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I recently bought a new commuting bike (Norco ccx3) which has mechanical disc brakes (Promax DSK-715 Road Mechanical Disc). Thus far I've been pretty happy with them.

In the last couple of commutes, I've noticed an ocasionally 'ting' sound coming from somewhere on the bike when I would hit a bump. This morning I figured out what it was.

On the front brake, the pads are a a bit loose in the calipers. That is, the spring clip thing is still in there, but when there is no pressure on the brake cable, the pads can rattle a bit between the caliper and the rotor. With the wheel in, there doesn't appear to be enough room for the pads to slip out and there still is a fair bit of pad left.

Is this normal, or is there any danger to this?

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"ting" sounds with mechanical calipers are not uncommon. The rotor flexes when steering and the pads do move a bit. Some calipers use magnets to hold the pads in, some use springs. I wouldn't be too concerned.

  • Yeah, I've never looked at disk brakes on bikes very closely, but on cars the pads are fairly loose. So long as the pads aren't rubbing the disk then a little rattling should be OK. – Daniel R Hicks Dec 21 '11 at 2:50
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    If it is spring type, you could take the pads out and bend the spring open a bit, so that it applies more force to keep the pads away from the disc. I had Deore mechanical and I did it once in a while, it worked. – heltonbiker Dec 21 '11 at 12:20
  • Yup, nice answer. If you're really worried about it and you're not familiar with disc brakes, take the bike to a shop and let a professional have a look. Being that it's Promax brakes, I don't think it's an issue. – joelmdev Dec 22 '11 at 20:01
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What kind of brakes are these?

This doesn't sound "normal". If the pads are touching the rotor when you're not pulling the brake lever, then you have a problem that needs to be fixed. If they're not touching the rotor, then it's not quite as bad, but it's still not OK.

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