Cannondale Expert Brake System

2.96/5 (26 Reviews)


Product Description

Cannondale Expert


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Reviews 1 - 15 (26 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:2
Submitted by DHmonkey123 a Downhiller from San Anselmo, Marin, California

Date Reviewed: June 16, 2010

Strengths:    good stopping power, light, good looks

Weaknesses:    when the pads wear out you can't tell if they actually are. not knowing caused metal on metal (metal on rim)and made a big groove in the rim

Bottom Line:   
Don't get these brakes, they wear out too fast

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Solstice or Tamarancho and my "secret trail"

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   Came on bike

Similar Products Used:   alot...

Bike Setup:   sadley, a cannondale F400

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Bujor Vasile Lucian a Cross Country Rider from Craiova , Dolj , Romania

Date Reviewed: January 24, 2006

Strengths:    Lightweight , good strength whem used on light frames , XC purpose .

Weaknesses:    Weak with organic pads .

Bottom Line:   
I am sorry for these problems , I realize how lucky I am by having these grait brakes functional ( I only bought one - rear - ) . I use it on Deore XT brake disk and I installed sintered metal calipers . The performace is unprecedent if o compare with cutting edge Hayes Brakes or Magura , besides i find it at a second hand store . No problems yet , even i have them for a month , i am a mad bull on that bike. I weight 90 Kilos but i ride fast and if there is a problem with this brake , by now i should find it ; i ride in winter and muddy conditions , especially below 0 . From 1 to 10 i give them 7.50 .

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Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $80.00

Purchased At:   second-hand dealer

Similar Products Used:   Hayes MAG XC , Hayes El Camino

Bike Setup:   Scott FX-30 Lite Flite , Deore hubs , Rigida Taurus wheels ,Shimano XTR Deraiours , Deore Switchers ,Marzocchi BOMBER MX Comp forck , Stratos O2-R Suspension .

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Bill a Cross Country Rider from NY

Date Reviewed: July 24, 2003

Strengths:    They do actually manage to stop the bike

Weaknesses:    I spend just as much time adjusting them as I do riding the bike

Bottom Line:   
I hope I'm posting to the right place. I see some posts for Disc brakes, I think thats another board. Anyway.
My friend has a Wal-Mart bike and he has less problems with his brakes.
I love everything about the bike except the brakes. Everytime I take the wheels off, the brakes have to be readjusted.
Just when I think I have them set perfectly, I go out riding and within a few miles, they are rubbing again. Brought the bike to the LBS to have them adjusted, it cost me $16. As soon as I got out on the road, they started rubbing again.
For $50 I'm gonna pick up a set of AVID SD 7's and be rid of them.
1 chili for value, because I'm sure Cannondale could have put better brakes on for very little addition cost to them or me. I would actually have preferred to pay an extra $10 if it meant decent brakes.
2 chili's overall, because they are not a danger to ride with. They do stop the bike, I just find them very annoying because they constantly have to be adjusted.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Similar Products Used:   Not sure, but I don't see anyone else fiddling with their brakes as much as me except for my friend who has the same bike

Bike Setup:   Stock F300

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Erik Smith a Cross Country Rider from San Jose CA

Date Reviewed: May 14, 2002

Strengths:    They look Cool

Weaknesses:    Brakes need readjustment every ride.
Brake fails when you really need it.
Gets very weak when heated up.


Bottom Line:   
Three weeks after buying the bike it has been in for service 3 times. Brakes leaked fluid from caliper after first ride. Rear Brake failed completly losing all fluid in seconds during a "intermediate" trail decent. The bike shop said they refilled the fluid without fixing anything and said to "try to see if it leaks again". <--not the safest idea. Cannondale has not offered to replace even though its under warrenty and I am waiting for them to reply to my complaint.


The bike is great but the brakes are horrible.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Limkin Trail/Los Gatos Creek

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1500.00

Purchased At:   Calamar Cycles

Similar Products Used:   XTR/ XT V brakes

Bike Setup:   2001 Cannondale F1000 lefty ELO, Coda Expert Disk Brakes

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Ted a Weekend Warrior from McKinney, Texas, USA

Date Reviewed: November 10, 2001

Strengths:    I didn't have to buy them. They Came on my bike. So they didn't cost me

Weaknesses:    I match what James said word for word Plus in addition I have gone through 5 sets of Pads. Ride through just a little sandy mud and be ready to replace the pads in the next 10 miles. I have to adjust the pads at every ride, Alchohol the roaters and clean the brake system with Dawn Detergent. They Creak,Screech,Slip and basically don't work well. Cannondale makes it difficult to change since you have to replace the Hubs and get your wheel rebuilt to change rotors

Bottom Line:   
Cannondale doesn't offer these on their new bikes anymore instead you get Hayes or Magura with a universal hub.

My bike is sweet, My dealer; "Wheels and Fitness" is Great, The service that I have recieved from Jeff the Manager and Cannondale is fantastic! But these brakes Suck!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Erwin Park-Mckinney Texas

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Purchased At:   Came on my bike

Similar Products Used:   None

Bike Setup:   2000 Cannondale Jekyll 900SL full XTR and soon XT Disc Brakes when I can afford to buy hubs and get my wheels rebuilt.

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:1
Submitted by james cleaver a Racer from euless tx usa

Date Reviewed: September 17, 2001

Strengths:    none

Weaknesses:    Inconsistent braking power,pads get contaminated too easily,
squealing noises loud enough i feel like i am in the movie deliverance,modulation changes as you are riding,pads will not stay tight.


Bottom Line:   
these brakes came on my jekyll, they had poor breaking power to start but i was told to let them break in. they never really did. since then i have replaced kevlar pads with cintered pads, added brake line attachments to keep the lines from melting, have had to replace a front caliper, replaced a warped rear rotor, and have to set the pad gap on these brakes from ride to ride. I have done everything the cannondale dealer and phone rep has suggested, and they still squeal, suck and don't work consistently enough to race with them. i can not even ride 10 miles without the adjustment going out of wack. I am very patient with bike equipment, and also take very good care of my bikes, but i must say that these brakes are terrible!!!!! even my local cannondale dealer told me to quit wasting my money and get some hayes or magura.Beware of these if you buy a new cannondale, swap em for almost anything else they will put on the bike.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Breaks at H ranch, St. Jo Tx.

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Purchased At:   Wheels in motion, Richard,son Tx

Similar Products Used:   magura hydraulic rim brakes, xtr V brkaes

Bike Setup:   Cannondale 3000sl jekyll

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Dan Johnson a Cross Country Rider from Worcester, MA 01604

Date Reviewed: August 5, 2001

Strengths:    Easy to adjust and set up

Weaknesses:    Loose a hydrolic line in the woods and you loose the brakes

Bottom Line:   
I have used these in all kinds of conditions and temps. I am 6' tall 260 lbs and have never had a problem stopping. The 2001 has a little black heat sink thing that attaches the hose and the caliper, this makes all the difference. I have a friend that has the 2000 expert disc's and on his bike they suck. For 2001 they added this heat sink thing and now I just have to adjust my breaks as the pads wear out and I am good to go. If these come on your bike I wouldn't upgrade unless you really have to have the "brand name" brake systems.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Leominster State Forest

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   Bicycle Alley

Similar Products Used:   None

Bike Setup:   2001 Jekyll 1000 with a lefty and Coda Expert discs

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Tommy from fairfield, nj, usa

Date Reviewed: June 30, 2001

Strengths:    light weight

Weaknesses:    no power

Bottom Line:   
worst disc ever

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Rob P a Cross Country Rider from Bolton, Ontario. Canada

Date Reviewed: January 1, 2001

Strengths:    - Solid feel.
- Good modulation.


Weaknesses:    - Stock "Green" pads aren't very good.
- Levers too close to bars.
- Not the best system around.


Bottom Line:   
My bike was shipped with the old "Green" pads rather than the "Blue" pads that were supposed to have shipped on all year 2000 bikes (See http://www.cannondale.com/tech/pdfs/01_expert_brake_supp.pdf for pad type identification). I used them all summer and found that they were not powerful enough (I weigh 185lbs). I have since switched to the new sintered metal pad kit (with standoff tube) with great success. I was guaranteed by tech support at Cannondale (1-800-BIKEUSA) that these would do it for me and so far, I think they’re right. For those of you who are complaining about lack of braking power, I suggest that you call tech support and maybe if enough of us complain, they might recall the old ones... unfortunately, I had to pay for mine.

As for my complaint about the levers being too close to the bars... the levers can easily be modified. E-mail me for instructions.

And for those of you who are complaining about leaking... I have not had a problem with the Expert but I do know that Cannondale has discontinued the Competition brake due to this.

Overall, I like the brakes. Would I buy them seperately to install on my bike... probably not. But would I buy another Cannondale with the same brakes... For sure!

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Bike Setup:   Year 2000 Cannondale F2000

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by John Felty a Cross Country Rider from Tempe, Arizona

Date Reviewed: December 14, 2000

Strengths:    Compact design. Lightweight

Weaknesses:    Perpetual maintanence. Poor overall power. Lack of power reserve means any contamination of pad or rotor causes dangerous braking situation.

Bottom Line:   
Bike Shops mechanic dream brake. Requires constant attention and adjustment. Things that have broken. Caliper seal failure on several calipers. Heat warped rotor. Multiple sets of pads @ $20 bucks each. I have now earned a PHD in Expert brakes, and I have tried any and all solutions ever posted on the web regarding getting these suckers to work. They are unpredictable and even the master coda mechanic cannot keep them set up for more than a couple of rides. BETA design. Cannondale had now said that these are for cross country only. This means that any situation that would require the use of expert brakes.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Sunset

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Similar Products Used:   Hayes

Bike Setup:   2000 900sx

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Adam F a Downhiller from Alameda Ca, USA

Date Reviewed: November 29, 2000

Strengths:    linear stopping power at any speed, that doesn't fade away when heat is generated at pads. Easy to adjust. And all the other reasons disks are good...work great in wet muddy stuff, rims can be out of true...less rotational inertia of wheels...

Weaknesses:    Need a clean well lit shop to service

Bottom Line:   
Excellent power at speed. Good on steeps at slow speed. Haven't tried them at steeps at high speed yet but I have confidence in them. At first I was concerned about the power because they lack the grabbiness that v brakes have at slow speeds, but anyone who has ridden steeps with their hands full of V brakes knows how the power dramatically fades off as they get hot. These don't do that. I will never ride V brakes again. Those who want more consistent braking power, and or those who like the feel of wheels with really low rotational inertia would be wise to consider these.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Similar Products Used:   shimano Vs, Hayes hydraulic

Bike Setup:   Cannondale Hardtail XTR, Lefty

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Hope to Stop a Cross Country Rider from FL

Date Reviewed: October 23, 2000

Strengths:    They Look Like they can stop a bicycle!

Weaknesses:    Sore Pinched fingers.

Bottom Line:   
I normally don't Complain, But picture yourself desending down a 50 degree hill,with a tree 30 feet ahead, and you need to lock-up the rear and lean the bike to the left to make a 60 Degree turn. on a bike with V-Brakes NO PROBLEM!, With STATE OF THE ART Cannondale Experts your picking bark out of your ass. the brakes DO NOT LOCK UP. If State farm requirerd anti lock brakes on my bike I would Keep Your So Called "EXPERTS". But it looks like I'll have to shell out more money. I have to Admit that name sold me! I Have three bikes all totalling over $10,000 & the new bike is collecting dust in the Garage because cannondale dosen't require Testing before subjecting. & for The MORONS who Disagree, Happy Pickons!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Redick

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Purchased At:   International bikes

Similar Products Used:   v-Brakes

Bike Setup:   Jeckyl 3000

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by gavin a Weekend Warrior from canada

Date Reviewed: October 18, 2000

Strengths:    They stop the bike. Ease of ajustment

Weaknesses:    You must be carefull not to contaminate the pads or rotors

Bottom Line:   
Before I got this bike I read all the reviews, and came to this conclusion. People love or hate them, there seems to be no in-between, so I figure it's a set up or contaminate problem. How can one person say they stop great and the next say their crap. I was right, if you clean them regularly with Dawn dishwashing liquid, keed oil and grease away from the rotors and follow Cannondales instructions for beding in and adjustment, these things rock, they are better than any rim brake I've used. I have no squeal, no spongy feel and no problems, The bike (which is awesome) stops when I want, where I want. Just look after the bike and clean it regularly-which you should be doing anyway-and all will be great

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   all

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   Came with bike

Similar Products Used:   none

Bike Setup:   Raven 2000

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Paul a Cross Country Rider from Seattle, Wa

Date Reviewed: September 20, 2000

Strengths:    When they are tuned they work great for 3 days of hard riding.

Weaknesses:    Turned them in 5 times for Pressure loss and calipiers defaulting, had the calipiers replace twice.

Bottom Line:   
Waiting for Cannondale to step up to the plate and ask for a recall or let people trade them in for other Disc's at the cost.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Mukeiteo

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Similar Products Used:   V brakes

Bike Setup:   900 SL JEKYL XT XTR

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Don a Cross Country Rider from San Diego, CA

Date Reviewed: September 11, 2000

Weaknesses:    Ambient temperature sensitive. Start out at 7am in 60 degree weather with mushy breaks, at 10am in 80 degree weather the breaks work as setup.

Bottom Line:   
Follow up to a previous post dated 7-26-2000:

Funny thing happened, snapped my rear axel forcing me to switch back to a rim brake on the rear. I hate having two different brake levers so jumped at a buddies offer to let me use his Hayes Mechanical on my Lefty until I got my rear wheel back.

That Hayes Mechanical completely altered my thoughts on the Coda Expert brakes.

Codas:
Good modulation
Light weight
Stop only slightly better than a good V
Unbelievable ambient temperature issue (yes the damn things have been bled).
$240 US per wheel

Hayes Mechanical:
Good modulation
Heavier (but not much)
Stop almost as good as the Hayes hydraulic
$120 US per wheel

I considered the 2001 upgrade mentioned below, but balked at the "not for downhill use or when extended brakeing is required" My favorite trail is 30 minutes of near constant braking. Also would not resolve the ambient temperature issue.

I've also used the Avid mechanicals, they stop a little better than the Hayes, but have poor modulation.

Bottom line - If you own a Cannondale and can use non-Coda hubs then definately look at the Hayes or Avid mechanical brakes. They stop better than the Codas, cost half as much, and are much more reliable (read, duck tape will fix your cables in a pinch). If you own the Lefty you are SOL when it comes to the Avids, get the Hayes.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Iron Mountain

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $240.00

Similar Products Used:   Hayes hydraulic, Magura Louise, Avid mechanical, Hayes mechanical

Bike Setup:   SuperV with Lefty
Mavic 317 rims, original hubs
In the process of swapping out my Coda disks for Hayes HMX Mechanical (yes 100% mechanical 0% hydraulic)

Reviews 1 - 15 (26 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


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