I have a persisting issue where the caliper rim brakes which contact the metal part of the rim are too high and instead rub against the tyre on my front wheel. Previously, this issue persisted when I first got the bicycle. I got the brake caliper replaced but this did not fix it. I then replaced the wheel which solved the problem and the brakes were making appropriate contact to the metal rim.

Unfortunately, I crashed the bike a few days later. I crashed the front wheel into a pole and I went over the hoods. The brakes had the same issue where they were too high and made contact with the tyres. I tried solving the problem by truing the wheel, despite not having a truing stand and doing it for the first time, I have the wheel which was not extremely out of true initially but improved it to as true as possible. However, the brakes are still misaligned. Unusually, the brake position is uniform across the entire rim and does not change position unlike what is expected in a crash where there will be a specific area where there will be an issue. (I have done all adjustments to the brake caliper as possible and moved them to the lowest possible position)

I have scoured the entire internet for a solution and similar problem yet have failed to find one.

Is there a possible fix to this? I've tried to visualise what the causes are but the only thing I can think of is that the wheel was either hit on all sides and consequently uniformly shrunk in size which is obviously not the case. brake severly out of alignment

  • 1
    Can you post photos of the brake area?
    – ojs
    Dec 17, 2018 at 7:33
  • Do you mean that on some sections of rim the pads are properly aligned, and on some the pads are too high? Dec 17, 2018 at 7:34
  • 2
    Totally wild theory, but if the fork was bent during the impact it could in theory make the dropout further from the crown and cause this issue. Seems extremely unlikely to me though.
    – Andy P
    Dec 17, 2018 at 10:37
  • 2
    A possible remedy: Long reach brake callipers..
    – Carel
    Dec 17, 2018 at 12:50
  • 2
    Can you add a pic of the entire fork and wheel? Dec 17, 2018 at 12:54

2 Answers 2


That looks like the wrong-sized wheel: a newer 622 mm wheel in an older fork designed for 27" (630 mm) wheels.

Per the great Sheldon Brown:

27 x anything except "27 five" and 609 mm Danish        630 mm      Older road bikes.
  • Yep, given (from what little can be seen in the photo) the apparent age of the caliper and the newness of the rim, it's very likely that the calipers are for 27" rims, not 700c/622mm. Dec 17, 2018 at 22:40

Rim brakes come with different "reach" -- the length of the arms. You might have brakes that are too long short and you could replace them with brakes with shorter longer reach.

  • 2
    Rather the opposite, with longer reach, the picture being upside down.
    – Carel
    Dec 17, 2018 at 15:59
  • Note that this change is simply "fixing" the problem created by installing undersized rims. Dec 17, 2018 at 22:41
  • Without a measurement I’m not convinced that the rim is indeed undersized. That would be a much rarer problem than requiring brakes with more reach. Dec 18, 2018 at 7:37
  • 1
    I've sucessfully done this by fitting Tektro 559 calipers to an 80s road bike, allowing me to use modern 700C wheels and not 27" steel rims. Completely and absolutely worth doing, if the bike is worth saving.
    – Criggie
    Dec 18, 2018 at 9:06

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