Cannondale Theta Brakeset



Abernathy

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Jan 31, 2007
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I have an R700 Cannondale, a few years old now, that has been as solid as a rock... except for the brakes. I have tried all manner of pad options and combos with similar results. This is my first roadie and am perhaps still pretty green, but are the Thetas just ****? I have been eyeing off the SRAM Force/Rival set as an option for replacement. Oh, I am running the standard Shimano R550 wheelset and the braking surface is in fine condition.

Cheers, Abernathy.
 

Abernathy

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Jan 31, 2007
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Forgive my mild embellishment with the inclusion of the word "all". I have tried several pad options (Jagwire, Koolstop, Shimano...) with similar results. I guess this is what I mean by all manner.

Thanks.:)
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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Abernathy said:
Forgive my mild embellishment with the inclusion of the word "all". I have tried several pad options (Jagwire, Koolstop, Shimano...) with similar results. I guess this is what I mean by all manner.

Thanks.:)

Which Kool Stops did you try?

There are things, other than pads, which can decrease brake performance, or at least performance as you like it. If the pads are set too far away from the rim, brake lever travel will be increased, possibly resulting in a rider feeling as if brake power has decreased. Second, if the brake cable is not pulled tight enough when the brakes are set up, or if the cable has slipped in the pinch bolt, the effect will be much like that if the pads are set too far from the rim.

As a first step, check to see how far the pads are from the rim. I like very little lever travel up front and more lever travel in the rear, so my front pads are positioned about 1mm, always less than 2mm, from the rim. In the back, the pads are 3-4mm off the rim. Those positions, though, are just my preference. You might try adjusting the brakes so that the pads are closer to the rim. You can make that adjustment at the barrel adjuster on the brake caliper. You might need to recenter the brakes afterward.

One other thing you might do is check to see that the brake track on your wheels is clean.
 

Abernathy

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Jan 31, 2007
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Umm... KoolStop Supra 2 inserts, the black ones anyway.

I also prefer a very direct feel and set my calipers up as such, similar to your description. ( I hesitate to digress too much, but we have a number of bikes, with 3 roadies in the mix running Sora, 105 & Theta). Buying the roadie to train for MTB saw me developing a bit of a bug for racing on the road as well. Having an appreciation for the benefits of cleanliness in regards to bike componentry sees the rims and pads clean and uncontaminated.

I have replaced the inner and outer cables (Sept last year), but will do it again and re-check the setup, but I am not a complete stranger to caliper or disc brakes. The nuances, or feel, of various models of road calipers is a different story.

So, perhaps I should take the 105s off my partner's bike and run them for a week or so as a comparison... if she lets me.;) Her bike is significantly smaller or I would just ride it.

Cheers,

A.

ps I decided to do a deeper netsearch re the Thetas with no substantial results or info.