I took a bunch of parts off of a bike with a hybrid titanium/carbon frame (it died), and am using them to build up a bike from a sweet steel frame I got on ebay for a song. It's my first time building up a frame from scratch, and although it has been mostly smooth sailing so far, I recently ran into a major issue with the brake calipers.

As far as I can tell, due to the fact that the tubing on the steel frame is so much skinnier than the tubing on the titanium/carbon one, the pivot bolts on both of the calipers (the part that actually inserts into the frame) are too long, so that even when the nut is tightened all the way the calipers are still loose and flop around. Is there any way that I can work around this and still use those old calipers?

  • Welcome to the site! Are the rims the same size on both bikes? Jul 20 '11 at 7:00
  • Thanks! I took the wheels from the old bike as well, so yeah.
    – tel
    Jul 21 '11 at 3:06

I've run into situations on cheap BSOs (rebuilding bikes for Christmas Anonymous) where the pivots were welded on and we had this problem. Using shims (washers) worked OK, though it looked a little dorky.


The difference is usually in the length of the threaded insert that goes in the frame, and that the caliper bolt threads into.

The inserts are available separately, and must be sized correctly for the frame.

There may be some older calipers where the bolt itself is too long, but a Ti/Carbon frame sounds pretty new for that.

They come in 16mm and 22mm lengths. A steel frame would normally use the shorter 16mm version. See photos.

Caliper Bolt For Road Bikes M6 X 16mm X Dia 10mm Caliper Bolt For Road Bikes M6 X 22mm X Dia 10mm

____________ 16mm _____________________________________________________ 22mm _________________________


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