Garage Files: How To Regain That New Brake Feeling

be found at the local bike shop. Ask your favorite shop mechanic for one for your model of brake and add it to your toolbox.

18-Don’t forget to reinstall the pad retention pin and torque it properly. Failure to do this can result in your pads flying out mid-ride and could cause a nasty crash.

19-Snap the brake-pad spacer into place. Most of these will stay in place on their own and are designed to help you find the correct pad spacing.

20-Loosen the brake-caliper mounting bolts. If your frame uses an adapter, you should not loosen those. Only loosen the ones that come in from the top and control the alignment of the caliper.

21-Reinstall the wheels on the bike. You should be sure that the rotor is clean before doing this. If there is any doubt, clean the rotor with isopropyl alcohol and a fresh paper towel first.

22-With the brake applied, tighten the caliper mounting bolts. It’s helpful to alternate between the two bolts as you’re tightening them. Tighten the first bolt about halfway, then the other, then finish torquing the first, then the second. This prevents the caliper from moving while the bolts are being tightened.

23-If the squeeze-and-tighten method doesn’t work, use the window on top of the brake to check the alignment of the brake and the trueness of the rotors. You should be able to see a bit of daylight between both sides of the rotor and the pads. Spin the wheel to ensure this is true all the way around the rotor.

24-If your rotor is slightly off—and most are—you can use a rotor truing tool, like this one from Wolf Tooth Components, to bring it back to true. Gently work the rotor in the direction it needs to go. This can also be done with a small crescent wrench—just be sure it’s free of contaminants before throwing it on the rotor.

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