Sunday, November 7, 2010

Brake-Lever hoods for old Schwinn`s

Left Click on Image to Enlarge. Back(<)Button to Return

Above: This brake-lever was used on the Schwinn Continental and some Le-Tours and most likely several other bikes (circa 1980). It does not look like a good candidate for brake-lever hoods. As you can see the suicide lever on this one has already been removed. For removal see August 8th 2010 (We don`t need no Stinking Suicide Levers!) I chose to remove the cap screw on the side of the lever frame. This gives the hood a better fit. If you do this, make sure that you can not manipulate the post to come out of the housing after installing the hood. If you can replace the cap screw and continue.

Above: To remove the lever loosen the clamp using the slotted screw located in side the lever body. On some levers you will need to use an an Allen wrench. After you slide the clamp off the bars then remove the screw and remove the clamp. This will make it easier to install the hood. Take notice of how this came apart, as you will need to re-assemble it later.

Above: I have already removed the tip/adjuster from the lever. It screws off by turning it counter clock-wise by hand. You may need pliers to get it started. I like to insert the lever body into the hood as shown. Be careful using the "Cane Creek" hoods they are not as pliable as the old gum hoods. Do NOT insert the
lever body all the way just yet.

Above: Depending on the climate, You might want to warm-up the hoods "a little" using a heat-gun (set on low)or hair dryer gun. This will make the hood somewhat more pliable and easier to stretch over the lever body or frame. The key words here are "a little" You still have to handle the (insert swear word here) thing!

Above: This is what it should look like when you have worked it into place. Now you are ready to do come cutting. You will need a razor knife with a fresh blade and a small pair of sharp scissors. Use EXTREME CAUTION when working with SHARP TOOLS not
a job for children. If you don`t feel confident find someone with experience to do the cutting for you.

Above: You can feel where the post meets the frame of the lever you might even see a slight ridge. When cutting it is better to come up a little short that to cut too much off. If you cut it close enough, the tip will push the excess out of the way when you screw it back on.

Above: When screwed back on the tip / adjuster should make contact with the hood.
This one is not screwed-on all the way in this pic.

Above: Here I cut-out the channel for the lever using the razor knife. After cutting out the channel you can touch-up the edges with the small scissors.

Above: After trimming the channel cut, I screwed the tip/adjuster down all the way.
Then re-attached the clamp to the lever frame and mounted it on the handlebars. The top cut can now be touched-up with a single edge razor blade if necessary. I decided to leave well enough alone.

Yeah Baby! That`s what I`m talking about!

Till Next Time, Please RIDE SAFE and Remember to Always RESCUE,RESTORE&RECYCLE
Cheers, Hugh


  1. Wouldn't it be better to simply soak the hoods on hot water? Regardless, the conversion really dresses the bike up.

  2. That's really slick! I just assumed that when you finished the Continental in the last post that those were different levers. I have those same levers on my '78 Schwinn LeTour III.

  3. Hey Steve,
    That would work well too.(probably less chance melting them too!) But my heat gun is right here on the work-bench, and the stove is in the house.
    (that`s where my wife is)lol... Need I say more?

  4. Hey Bill,
    Thanks, I appreciate that. I try to re-use as many components as I can. Unless it is something that I think can be improved without spending a ton of cash. Or something that can be made safer. (like the brakes on the Rampar)However I really "took a beating" on the Rampar. But at least I know where ever it is... "It stops really well"

  5. Hey Hugh,
    I have a 78 Continental II and cannot get that tip adjuster off for the life of me. The whole thing spins. Almost like it was pressed from the inside. Any ideas?

  6. Hey 78 Conti.
    If my memory is correct, some of these have a retainer ring that makes them harder to remove. And some do not come-off at all. You probably have the latter. I wish I had better news for you. Good Luck. Let me know how it works out.

  7. Thank you very much for this- it seems those Cane Creek hoods can fit on a lot of different hoods- your pics and explanations made it much easier for me.


Cycling Blog Directory