I have been given a bike which is in good order, except that the brakes are rubbing against the wheel. I have fiddled about with it but I can't adjust it effectively.

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  • 3
    These pictures are great. Really helps us see what is going on.
    – David D
    Feb 17, 2023 at 13:36
  • 2
    Not a big deal, but you have V-brakes, not calipers. I've updated the question so that people find the right thing when they search.
    – jimchristie
    Feb 17, 2023 at 14:04
  • 1
    Is the wheel properly centred in the fork? It doesn't look like it, and can easily be a bit off if the nuts were done up with it not fully seated. Also is the wheel true, or does it appear to wobble from side to side when you spin it?
    – Chris H
    Feb 17, 2023 at 15:41

1 Answer 1


The first and fourth picture show that the spring moving back the right-hand brake arm is dislocated. Just push it back behind the brake arm, so that it rests on that pin-like protrusion with a notch. Compare with the other three arms to see it should go, if it's not self explanatory.
After that, if the rubbing still occurs, check which parts rub where?
If the brake pads rub because they sit too high, adjust them by loosening the 5mm hex screw that holds them in place. Make them parallel to the rim, and ideally "toe them in", meaning to position them such that the rear end of the pad has a little more distance to the rim than the front. This may take a few attempts, but take your time with that: your brakes are your life ensurance.
Also, in your third picture you can see the adjustment screw (the one with the blue stuff on the threads). screwing that further in makes the brake arm on that side move back further when the brake is released. You have them on each of your brake arms (some brakes have them on one side only). Adjust them such that your brake pads, when released, are approximately equally far away from the rims.
Oh, and clean your rims from time to time, for better brake performance.

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