RE: [CR]Brakes and use of star washers

Content-class: urn:content-classes:message
Subject: RE: [CR]Brakes and use of star washers
Date: Sat, 19 Nov 2005 10:10:16 -0800
Thread-Topic: [CR]Brakes and use of star washers
Thread-Index: AcXtMYsUwR2JUOvOQACS7Yqm235fdQAAQyKA
From: "Mark Bulgier" <>
To: "charles nighbor" <>, <>

Charles Nighbor wrote:
> When mounting typical side pull brakes I see both one star
> washer and two star washers used on pictures of bicycles.
> Which method is correct.
> And why?

Defining "correct" as the way God or Tullio intended, I'll posit this conjecture:

When fork crowns were rounded in front where the brake bolt emerges, a curved-in-back, flat-in-front "radius washer" was used to make a flat surface for the brake. Then only one star washer is used. Note the little divot in the Campy version of the radius washer, to clear the bottom of the headset (crown race) - that's for forks that put the brake hole higher up, closer to the headset, like Masi.

When the fork crown has a flat spot milled there, to eliminate the need for a radius washer, that moves the whole brake closer to the fork, to where you can't get a cone wrench onto the 13mm flats to center the brake. THAT's when you use two star washers in front.

On the newer brakes that came with two star washers, if you use a radius washer and one star in front, don't put the extra star in back of the crown - this doesn't do anything and looks like a rookie mistake to my eyes.

Never use two in the rear (unless you've got some weird bridge or seatstays that require it).

Mark Bulgier
Seattle WA USA