Cranbrook, what is the best solution to the lack of a front brake?

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by Nehmo, Aug 7, 2017.

?

Do you have a front brake on your motorized bike?

  1. Yes, disk

    55.6%
  2. Yes, rim clamp

    44.4%
  3. Yes, drum

    11.1%
  4. Yes, other

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. No

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Nehmo

    Nehmo Member

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    I now have a Cranbrook 55387 with a 4-stroke 49cc engine mounted. (I still haven’t done the initial test drive, btw.) The main failing of the bike in its current condition is the lack of a brake beyond the coaster rear-hub one. It needs a front brake.

    The options:

    1. Get a new

    front fork (suspension?) with disk brake mounting holes.

    front wheel with a disk.

    disk brake.

    2. Get a new disk brake adapter and put a brake on.

    3. Get a rim-clamp (caliper) break, perhaps an extra-long-reach type. I measure 3.75 inches (9.5 cm) from the rim center to the hole where the fender was attached. The only one I could find with a reach that long was this from Niagra.

    Considering the reach is so long, and considering caliper brakes depend on a difficult-to-maintain true wheel, , a disk brake seems preferable. Do those adapters work? Where should I buy everything (wheel with disk, disk adapter or entire fork, brake itself)?

    What solutions do you advocate for the lack-of-front-brake situation? If you already were in this situation and bought a wheel or something, I'd appreciate directing me to the vendor you recommend. I'll just follow your footsteps. I hate buying from unknown companies, so a referral is helpful.
     

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  2. crassius

    crassius Well-Known Member

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    I usually go to used bike store and buy a front fork with studs for cantilever brakes (abut $15 last time).
     
  3. malatious

    malatious Member

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    I bought a used mountain bike at the second hand store for $30.00 that had the front disk break setup that I put on my Cranbrook. On my new bike I bought a springer fork setup from Sunlite and had a wheel made with a Sturmy Archer drum brake, total $300.00. Cantilever brakes are cheap and will work pretty good as stated above. So far my favorite is the Sturmy Archer drum brakes but have not had them long enough to know how fast they wear out. The disk pads and disk wear out faster when on a motorized bike but work very good.
     
  4. xseler

    xseler Well-Known Member

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    On my Cranbrook, I started with a standard type caliper brake. I progressed through several upgrades of pads until I found the Kool Stop Salmon pads ---- best I found for caliper brakes.

    Then, I did like malatious, I got a used mountain bike that had front suspension and disc brakes. I'm now running Kool Stop disc pads --- my bike stops now!!

    If you still haven't worked all the kinks outa your setup, I'd suggest the caliper brakes to start. You can get a new caliper, pads, cable, and handle for around $10. Good luck in your adventure!!
     
  5. Nehmo

    Nehmo Member

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    I'm measuring a reach (from the fender-mounting hole to the center of the rim at the top of the wheel) of 9.5 cm. That's an extra-long reach caliper. I'm considering the Tektro [​IMG] What did you use? It doesn't seem like I can put a regular-reach caliper on a Cranbrook.
    But then, if I'm ultimately going to use a disk, maybe I should just replace the wheel and fork now. If I could do it cheap enough, that's the way I'd go.
    I don't really have a good used bike parts store around here. At least I don't know of one. Although this is a substantially sized city, bikes are not popular here.
     
  6. crassius

    crassius Well-Known Member

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    yeah, those are great with that extra cam action, they grab like truck brakes - there's a chinese clone of those now that also works and is more affordable
     
  7. zhono

    zhono New Member

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    I paid $20 on Amazon for front and rear clamp type brakes, complete with cables and levers. Pads are junk, but the rest is okay. Front fits perfectly, rear not so much. Had to do some iffy bending of my frame to make the rear brakes work. Plan to upgrade to disc brakes in the front, but right now dealing with trouble with the engine kit I bought.

    And FYI, you don't need to get new a fork or rim to have disc brakes. Just get this: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JRD9SZS

    They also make one for the rear: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JR5U7K6

    The adapter to make your front rim work with disc brakes is less than $3. The adapter to use rear disc brakes with your drive sprocket costs like $25. So for like $35 you can prep your bike for disc brakes. Then it's just a matter of how much you want to spend on the actual brakes themselves.
     
  8. Nehmo

    Nehmo Member

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    I already wrong-bought from a local bike shop,
    RevolveKCK Community Bike Shop, a so-called long reach caliper. It didn't reach enough. When I tried to return it, they acted like they didn't have any money, so I accepted a rim in exchange. The rim is too narrow for my liking, so the deal was a loss.
    I want to go with the disc on the front. I'm aware of those adapters for the forks. To get a disc on the front, I'll also need a wheel with a disc adaptor for the wheel. The economy idea is to get a regular rear wheel, remove the sprocket, flip right/left, mount an adapter, mount a disc, and use the fork adapter with a regular disc brake mechanism.
    I'll have to find a good rear wheel to use for the operation. Otherwise, maybe I can use a new front wheel made for disc brakes.
    I've given up on the local bike places as a source for parts. A place on the other side of town,
    Xtreme Bike & Sport, is a brick&mortar of an online company that carries these things, but their Google reviews are terrible. Considering all the bad experiences I've had so far with bike parts, I think I should pay attention to the reviews.[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  9. archtop67

    archtop67 New Member

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    FYI what a complete flip'n nightmare... Im in same quandary... those band brakes with HD kit on back S U C K from what Im experiencing.. I think when you pull the brake the dang bike speeds up lol. anyway.. I have long reach calipers from my old stock inventory that BARELY reach but they do but they also don't stop anything on the slick now damaged paint on rim... I may try even another set of pads.. maybe more soft n sticky... when taking my bike out for a ride with stop signs every 300ft is a RPITA without brakes... currently I'm trying to figure out WHY they sell those band drum Chinese brakes as for the life of me they do not work at. all... maybe I need sand the metal drum disk surface.. but then I'm sure it will also sand the leather strap inside( Band ) I cannot find any info on proper setup so Im just guessing.. and I also bought this clamp and for the cranbrook style huffy frames.. the forks are terrible and are not parallel and the drop outs are not strait so they kanker the disk bracket off slightly ,not to mention huffy idea of putting the fender brace right in line with a possible disk brake adapter and forks are too narrow so its loose up top... I've been trying to get this dang bike up and running for 3 weeks now and the lack of brakes is stifling! not to mention I haven't been able to remove the top locking nut on headset without it wanting to strip... I'm braking out the impact if all else fails...
     
    #9 archtop67, Aug 29, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2017
  10. xseler

    xseler Well-Known Member

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    If you want to keep your calipers, try to find some Kool Stop Salmon pads. These have the best stopping power of any pad that I used before I upgraded to disc brakes. Also, make sure that the pads are flat when they contact the rim --- you want to use all of the pad surface.

    Best of luck in your continuing adventure!
     
  11. archtop67

    archtop67 New Member

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    yeah I have cool stop put on now... I disassembling my brake calipers and they were loose.. tightened the nut down then put it back together and added acorn on top to lock it down... seems to be working nice now but a real test will come next! I use Kool stops on my anti bikes and had a pair I had put on but that brake was just causing me grief lol
     
  12. ZipTie

    ZipTie Member

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    I always install long reach caliper BMX brakes on the front and rear and use a double pull brake handle on Cranbrook builds. I never use the coaster brake, its there in case of some emergency though. The Cranbrooks at least have the fork and seat stay bridge holes already there, so I have 3 brakes from day one.
     
  13. archtop67

    archtop67 New Member

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    i finally got mine to work.. I have long pull that were squeaking allot no matter what pads and scuffing up the painted rim.. i finally found some softer black pads and readjusted the toe in and they are working now but im still waiting on the right 44mm disk adapters to mount to the high flange steel hub and disk adapter... FYI the cranbrook forks are thinner than suspension forks and thicker than tapered forks.. .. I think I measured 30mm but will check later... the one disk adapter mount I received is like 2mm too wide on the clamp part so loose at top not to mention the forks are not parallel and dropouts have been bent to fit hub width... proper alignment by bending the forks parallel and straitening the dropouts or at least partially helps immensely but dropouts need to be perpendicular to ground or your going to be also bending the dropout built into the adapter... steel ok.. aluminum not ok to bend... imho
     
  14. archtop67

    archtop67 New Member

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    Ive only bought one cranbrook and I do like the frames design and being all steel however proper fitment was not achieved by our local walmart enthusiast technician lol I build custom frames and race bikes mostly as a hobby and occasionally for sale but these frames are not much different than the CG motors.. good fun platform but need a little tweaking here and there! lol
     

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