How to Adjust Shimano Ultegra Brakes

Written by matthew ferguson
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Shimano Ultegra is a series of performance bicycle components designed for road bikes. The series includes a pair of dual-pivot brakes, a type of caliper brake that pivots both directly above the wheel and just to the side of it. Optimal operation of the brake requires that each of the brake's two pads is positioned properly and that the brake is centred so that the pads can strike the wheel simultaneously.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • 5-mm Allen wrench
  • 3-mm Allen wrench

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  1. 1

    Squeeze the brake lever and note the position of each Shimano Ultegra brake pad in relation to the wheel's rim. Each pad should strike the rim at the rim's centre. If pad height needs to be adjusted, proceed to Step 2. If pad height is fine, skip to Step 3.

  2. 2

    Loosen the bolt on the side of the pad using a 5-mm Allen. Raise or lower the pad as needed in order to centre it, and then re-tighten the bolt to secure the adjustment.

  3. 3

    Observe the gap between each pad and the side of the rim. The pads should be equidistant to the rim. If one pad is sitting closer to the rim than the other, proceed to Step 4. If both pads are equidistant to the rim, skip to Step 5.

  4. 4

    Turn the adjustment bolt atop the Shimano Ultegra brake with a 3-mm Allen wrench to centre the pads. Turn the bolt counterclockwise to move both pads to the left. Turn the bolt clockwise to move both pads to the right.

  5. 5

    Observe the gap between each pad and the side of the rim once again. With the pads equidistant to the rim, the gap between each pad and the rim should be approximately 2mm. If the gap is more or less than 2mm, proceed to Step 6.

  6. 6

    Turn the cable adjustment nut, located at the brake's highest point, counterclockwise to decrease the gap between the pads and the rim or clockwise to increase the gap.

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