Machine Tech Brake Brake System

2.81/5 (37 Reviews)
MSRP : $135.00


Product Description

Machine Tech ZeroFlex II


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Reviews 1 - 15 (37 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Greg Yatko a Cross Country Rider from Chandler, Az. USA

Date Reviewed: January 14, 2008

Strengths:    Easiest brake in my life I've ever set up. If someone can't set this up in less than a minute, they shouldn't be working on bikes

Weaknesses:    Not the power of a longer arm v-brake. But good enough for me.

Bottom Line:   
you grease up the spring, put the adjuster base onto the brake, slide it on the brake post, put the allen screw on,barely tight, then do it to the other side, put the brake cable over the top, and adjust the bases with a cone wrench. This all takes 2 minutes. I have NEVER EVER had to reset the brakes after the initial setup. I've had these brakes for 11 years! They were first run in Pennsylvania, and had been underwater several times, so moisture isn't an issue. They've been run in the Arizona dust for a long time, so thats not an issue. They've lived in the corrosion prone rusty Florida moisture for 7 years, and that didn't do a thing to them. I guess I'll just keep my machine tech brakes with the real levers forever. I couldn't need anything else.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   National Trail South Mountain, Phoenix

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Purchased At:   with Jamis Team Dakkar


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Magildabek a Cross Country Rider from Santa Barbara

Date Reviewed: January 6, 2008

Strengths:    Yes, I have a set of Machine Tech brakes (not the Zero Flex or ZF II) that I haven't even found a picture of, but they are a previous revision because the use a noodle and have longer arms than any other pictures than their work I've seen. They still weigh in at 133 grams and look sweet as beans on my raw Al frame, but after trading parts with a bicycling machinist for one stainless barrel to be copied, and a cable retaining piece to be made, we found they WON'T WORK YET!

The deal is, that there is about 1/4" gab between where the spring wants to set and the actual frame, via the 1/4" wrench grip at the bottom of the brake bosses. There must have been a totally non-standard spacing part which the spring clipped into at some point. I may take some dense polystyrene and cut it haphazardly to fit, but will still need to tiny cotter pins to hold it rotationally static; this would be whack! HAS ANYONE SEEN NON STANDARD BRAKE BOSSES WHICH DON'T HAVE THE WRENCH GRIP ON THEIR BASE I COULD THREAD STRAIGT INTO THE FRAME WITH? That may be the solution another local biking machinist finds. I really want to see these brakes ride again, they are the lightest (even than my '04 Mag Avids) and sexiest looking brake EVER MADE!


Bottom Line:   
I need to find a solution for MT brakes not sitting flush with the frame over the bottom of our current standardized bosses.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   San Juan

Duration Product Used:   Tested or demo'ed only


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Andy a Weekend Warrior from Van Nuys

Date Reviewed: January 19, 2005

Strengths:    Looks, light weight & great performance if set-up

Weaknesses:    You don't just bolt them on

Bottom Line:   
Belive it or not, I am looking for another set of MACHINE TECH ZERO FLEX BRAKES, so if you want to sell, let me know (posted 1/2005).
Once you figure out how to correctly set these brakes up, they really work great! they are even durable with good pads.Hint; it's the pivot bolt/spring that causes the binding.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $20.00

Purchased At:   swapmeet

Similar Products Used:   Shimano LX, generic Fisher, Hayes disc & lots of cantilevers

Bike Setup:   Manitou fs with Cane Creek levers, a rear pully & rear brace (the pulley gives more clearance than a noodle & the brace helps stiffen the rear triangle).

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jason a Cross Country Rider from Elkhorn, ID USA

Date Reviewed: June 26, 2001

Bottom Line:   
Are you people serious? If these brakes don't work for you I suggest changing mechanics or upgrading your own skills. These are the EASIEST brakes to install and set up. My MT's never squeal and never bind, and the bolts never work loose. It's true that they need to be recentered every so often, but that's literally a ten second job with a pedal wrench...to do both brakes. They don't have the rim crushing power of the V's, but then again, I never need to crush the rim to stop my bike. I've never had any problem with the wicked sisters and I've been using these brakes and levers for five years. Don't forget that they are super light. As far as set up, just hook em up, pull the lever to clamp the pads against the rim, tighten down the pads and let a little slack out at the brake lever. How hard is that? No aligning the pads over and over to get em just right. Give em a little toe (stick a penny under the pad when you are tightening them while claped against the rim) and mive have yet to squeal. As I have never had a problem with these ever, I just have to give them 5 chilis for being light, effective, sweet looking, easy to set up (oh yes they are).

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years


Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Sven Lavine a Cross Country Rider from San Francisco

Date Reviewed: April 4, 2000

Strengths:    Fairly effective when working properly. Good looking.

Weaknesses:    These brake worked great at first. But it is VERY easy to overtighten the pivot bolt, causing the inner bushing to deform, resulting in severe binding. I did this to mine. And guess what - the manufacturer no longer produces bike parts, will not warrenty them, and do not stock replacement parts. Also, the levers are not working so great any more.

Bottom Line:   
DO NOT BUY THESE BRAKES! See product weaknesses for the reasons. As far as I know, they are not being manufactured any more, but there might be some still lying around. In my opinion, it is a good Idea to buy from established manufacturers that are able to maintain a level of quality control, and back it up with a good warrenty and customer support. Try Avid if you want to go with something other than Shimano.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Bike Setup:   Klein Attitude w/ shimano, Raceface, Rockshox and Bontrager Jones.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:3
Submitted by David a Cross Country Rider from Baltimore, Maryland

Date Reviewed: January 22, 2000

Bottom Line:   
The most beautiful V-brakes. Work great if setup properly. I think that these breakes have been given a bad rap! Maybe it's because I'm a bit of a tech-head, but I've got 'em workin great because I use Real X-levers which don't have a return spring and I set the spring tension on the brake very high. Make sure you use a minimum of cable housing length as this will sap the power from any brake. It is also important to grease the washer where it contacts the brake arm.

If done properly, I guarantee that you will fall in love (unless you use discs)! The pad holders are the best machined holders that I have ever seen.

***IF YOU DON'T WANT YOUR MACHINE TECH ZERO FLEX BRAKES, I WILL BUY A COUPLE OF SETS FROM YOU!!! I'M SERIOUS!!!

E-mail me, even if you want tips on setting-up.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Similar Products Used:   XT canti(still use), Alivio, XT V-brake(sucks--looks like shit('99) and uses a stupid small phillips head for spring tension. It also does't give proper return power for use with a lever that doesn't have a return spring.

Bike Setup:   '95 Trek 930, Marzocchi Z2 BAM, RaceFace LP cranks and headset, Real rings and levers, STX/XT derail., Mavic 217/GThubs, and XT rear canti & front Machine Tech V-brake

Overall Rating:1
Submitted by Dave a cross-country rider from MA

Date Reviewed: September 6, 1998

Bottom Line:   

If you are planning on building a bike up and never using it but displaying it for friends, you should consider buying these brakes. If you want to actually ride, don't even consider installing these brakes on your bike. I used them for less than a year and became so disgusted by there performance and constant cry for attention that I took them off and buried them in a little hole. I replaced them with the less expensive XT brake and have lived a happier life ever since.

Overall Rating:1
Submitted by waveslider a weekend warrior from redondo bch, ca

Date Reviewed: September 4, 1998

Bottom Line:   


Pluses: look nice, perform smoothly. good stopping power. Minuses: a pain in the butt to set up, wicked sister sticks out too far on the rear brake, my leg keeps rubbin' on it, they don't stay centered for very long...must be weak springs or the fact that the mounting bolt is very shallow and hard to tighten. It's the only thing that maintains the spring tension by forcing the brake against the brake boss. And think about this...if you had to adjust the spring tension out on the trail, you'de better have an open end wrench to hold the spring tension nut while you retighten the bolt!!! NOT A GOOD THING !!! I'll stick to a brake that uses a phillips head to adjust spring tension independently of the brake mounting bolt.

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Peter Sintic a cross-country rider from Hamilton Ontario

Date Reviewed: August 12, 1998

Bottom Line:   


I have been using them for two years and I am still having a great time with them. I get enough power after using brake boosters. Enjoy the progressive ability over 'V's. A little difficult to set them up but once dialed in, I haven't had any problems since. I love the looks of these babies and I wouldn't trade them for anything.

Overall Rating:4
Submitted by Michael a cross-country rider from Ottawa, Canada

Date Reviewed: June 28, 1998

Bottom Line:   


Upgraded from LX cantis o the Machine Techs. Installation was confusing until I READ THE INSTRUCTIONS. Very simple after that. A good productuct with some minor problems. Remember to use TI anti sieze compound on the bolts.
They tend to collect a lot of mud.
Use a new allen key on all the TI bolts (strip easily)A good product which just takes some care installing.

Overall Rating:1
Submitted by chiz a cross-country rider from Bham Alabam

Date Reviewed: June 1, 1998

Bottom Line:   


Finally had to replace these brakes. They have a serious design flaw. There is nothing separating the brake arm from the brake bolts, so that when you tighten them onto the frame the brake arm is actually clamped in by the bolt. They will never work correctly as long as the bolt binds the brake am in this fashion. I got some LX Vs from a mail order company in Colorado for $15.99 a pair and they work wonderfully compared to these pieces of shit. Don't do it, please!!!!!
NO CHILLIS, DAMNIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Overall Rating:4
Submitted by carlo a cross-country rider from toronto

Date Reviewed: May 28, 1998

Bottom Line:   


i see the bad reviews, buti tend to not agree. i've ridden through mud and the pulley thing hasn't jammed (maybe i'm just lucky). my cable also isn't kinked because of it. if the pads squeal (mine only do when i reef on them going really fast), blame kool stop; they are kool stop pads. admittedly, they do need recentering more than others, but this is quick. besides, i bet if i knurled the surface that contacts the fork, this wouldn't happen.

others also describe trouble installing them. i didn't have too many problems, though i did have to look at the insructions. after a few months of almost trouble-free riding, cool looks and the neat leverage adjust, i'll give them four flamers. would have been five if i never had to recenter them.

Overall Rating:1
Submitted by keven macgowan a weekend warrior from Rancho Palos Verdes, CA

Date Reviewed: May 26, 1998

Bottom Line:   


I bought the revamped version of these from Bike World for a great price
$24 each (so I thought). I followed the instructions while istalling them
and had a terrible time!! Horrible little critters to set up. The roller
for the brake cable has a very bad angle so it has lots of stiction and
therefore the brakes dont return to open, no matter how much you adjust the
spring.
On the trail these brakes are really mushy, and dont have very good mud
clearance. The finish is great and they look nifty, but they work like crap.

Overall Rating:1
Submitted by BRAIN a weekend warrior from TN.

Date Reviewed: May 6, 1998

Bottom Line:   


BRAKES WILL NOT STAY CENTERED ALWAYS NEED ADJUSTMENT. OLDER MODEL WICKED SISTER BINDS NEWER MODEL WORKS BUT MUST BE KEPT EXTRA CLEAN. NOODLES HELP SOME. NAME SHOULD BE CHANGED FROM ZERO FLEX TO ULTRA FLEX.SWITCHED TO SHIMANO AND NOW HAVE BRAKES THAT WORK PROPERLY. I GIVE THEM 1 STAR FOR LOOKS. MACHINE TECH BRAKES SHOULD BE IN THE HALL OF SHAME!

Overall Rating:4
Submitted by Reed a racer from TX

Date Reviewed: March 12, 1998

Bottom Line:   


People just seem to be crappin all over Machine Tech brakes. Lets see.... I bought their v brakes and levers at least a year ago. Initial setup and keeping them centered is not the easiest in the world, and they are a tad flexy. But nothing disasterous. Mine stop me on a dime, and the levers are wonderful. Have read reports the the wicked sister kinks the cable, I have had no trouble. i have to give these a very good rating, they work great overall (just a little more work to keep setup), look wonderful, and are priced well. Just keep the wicked sister and internals clean.

Reviews 1 - 15 (37 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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


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