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  1. #1
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    Reputation: cengle33's Avatar
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    Front Brakes won't stop

    I have an F1 Cannondale 29er. On my last ride i noticed i did not have good stopping power out of my front brakes. It looks like either oil from my lefty got on the pads and rotor or it is brake fluid. Question is how do i clean this off? Or do i need to replace the rotor and pads. Ealry in the ride the fronts made a horrible noise like i was beating baby seals or something. Than as the ride progressed i lost total power out of the front.

  2. #2
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    Clean the rotor and pads off with rubbing alcohol. If it's oil, boil off any remaining fluid in the pads by baking them in your kitchen oven or toaster oven at 300F. Just be aware it may smell up your kitchen...

    Not sure if the oven trick will work with DOT fluid.

  3. #3
    Mr. Shibing
    Reputation: kuratsunade's Avatar
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    alcohol will do the job. bleach will smoke it(my friend told me that)...lol..
    I've seen people boil the pads and the disks in water, I do not know if that will help...
    A Chinaman in the States. Here we go!

  4. #4
    cougarbait
    Reputation: Lambdamaster's Avatar
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    try automotive brake cleaner
    09AS-Rsl/09Six

  5. #5
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    Replace the pads, clean the rotor using ispropyl alcohol (less diluted the better). Pads are like sponges, lots of small pores through out them. They'll hold onto any contaminant and never really come back to proper power. Brake cleaners leave behind a nasty residue, and on top of that are extremely noxious. you can use 'em on your cars brakes because teh clamp force of a cars brakes go through an amplifier and amps up the clamp force, overriding the loss of friction due to contaminants. Bike discs unfortunately don't have that luxury!
    You are not what you own.

  6. #6
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    I agree with Juan, no automotive brake cleaner. Take the pads out and thoroughly clean your pads and rotors with Ispopropyl alcohol (99-100% alochol if you can find it). If they still aren't right (ie your pads are contaminated) you'll likely have to replace your pads and reclean your rotors.

    You should also look and see where the spilled fluid is coming from. Leaking fork seals are bad but leaking brake fluid could be much worse... don't want that brake lever pulling straight ot the bar when your in the middle of some gnar singletrack! Good luck.
    NW MTB Addict

  7. #7
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    If any oil got on the pads they are probably toast. This happened to me when after a muddy ride and relube. Somehow some lube got onto my rear pads beknowing to me. Following week im hauling ass and hit the brakes and the fronts locked up but the rears just hummed loudly and didnt do anything. Scared the hell out of me and almost through me over the bars at nearly 22 mph. I went home and cleaned them with brake cleaner....sanded them...cleaned again....did nothing. Wound up bringin it to the LBS and the guy told me the pads are toast due to the oil, and he swapped them out on the spot for free.

  8. #8
    I wear two thongs
    Reputation: Eric Hoefer's Avatar
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    You can try sanding your brake pads with sand paper as well. It's hit or miss though, I've had it work with amazing results at times, and other times I've had it give the pads no improvement at all, but it's easy and worth a shot.
    Hiking is just walking where its okay to pee... Sometimes old people go hiking by accident. -Demetri Martin-

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