a Cross Country Rider
from Divide, Colorado
Date Reviewed: August 27, 2010
Strengths: Stops the bike very well
Weaknesses: Doesn't make bike go faster
I bought this brake last minute for the front because I upgraded the forks, stem, bars, etc. and my old Deore center pull was not compatible with my forks. I planned on getting something better when time allowed but after using them, I really see no need. The bike is mainly for my commute which is part dirt road and part highway and this brake stops great at all speeds and I see no need for improvement. I'm pretty much gearing the bike for mainly road use and v-brakes fit the bill just fine. They are lighter than disc (which I have on my XC bike) as a bonus too :o]
Bike Setup: 1995ish Haro Extreme, Dart-3, old 7 speed Deore XT and hubs, Easton EA50 bars, EA70 stem, Cane Creek S3, Ritchey rims, WTB saddle, Oury shiznits.
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: May 5, 2010
Strengths: Good tolerances, well made
Weaknesses: Cannot dismantle to clean and lube
I have worked with various V-Brakes. On most of them the brakes work the same way, a brass sleeve in the arm slips over the fixed post and can be removed for cleaning and lubing.
On the Shimano the bearings are captive and cannot be dismantled making cleaning and lubing the bearing sleeve difficult if not impossible. I wonder how long the brakes will last, given that they get covered in mud from the tires
Other than that the tolerances on the brakes are good - no slop - and the brakes are well made. The springs are strong and easily adjusted.
I got these to replace Tektro brakes that broke when the adjusting screw hit a tree, but I think I prefer the Tektro.
a Cross Country Rider
from Penang, Malaysia
Date Reviewed: March 2, 2006
Strengths: Only Good at early stage
Weaknesses: The Pads, and like i said only good at early stage, imagine it after 6 months
When I first bought this brake I was amazed by how good it is at breaking. I fell off my bike at my first run but after a few runs and going downhill at high speed, the brakes loose all its power. I must use about 3 fingers to make the brake slow down and I crashed at Penang Hill cause this brake will not slow down quickly and i crashed, thank god i was ok. Another thing is this brake really is BAD during wet conditions, I can pull my whole lever and the brake will never brake, I crashed at my house gate cause of the brakes. But if you are a beginner or a weekend rider this brakes is ok but if you are like me, everyday cycling - upgrade to a better brakes like Avid SD7 - oh yeah before I finish up my review, the brake RIMS is the LAMEST!!!, it practically make my rear wheel rims black and i must clean it everytime so that i can brake, if not it will just slide. Dont bother to change the pads, just upgrade to another V's
Weaknesses: Heavy, Noisy/Weak when wet, Stock pads leave residue on rims.
Fisher spec'd these brakes on my HKEK ($919), though I suspect he thought people would switch to discs. It's a really nice bike with disc bosses, disc hubs, and Avid FR-5 levers...so it looks like Fisher made a bike that was just aching to go Mech disc and just haphazzardly threw the Shimano 420's on it to save $.
Anyway...I used these brakes for a few months until I saved up enough to Juicy-up. They performed very well under dry conditions. Good stopping power, mediocre modulation. Not too powerful in moisture, a bit noisy too. I would not suggest anyone buying these brakes 'after-factory' for a bike, but for OEM...they're okay. Avid V-brakes are soooo cheap these days, you may as well get those if youre gonna upgrade your existing system to a nicer rim-type brake.
Similar Products Used: Deore V-Brake, Avid SD 2.0, Avid Juicy-5's
Bike Setup: Stock '05 Fisher HKEK + LX HT II Cranks + ODI Lock-On's + Now using Avid Juicy 5's
Date Reviewed: June 6, 2003
Strengths: on gt timberline. Well, they stop me and will throw me off the bike if I am not careful. I weigh 180 lb. I am kinda' proud of myself b/c I have learned to adjust my brakes. You have to balance at the lever, at the cable, and the small screws for centering and they work fine. I usually clean the black crud off with alchohol as haynes repair manual suggest and they squeak very little, if at all. If I consistantly clean the rims I have sufficient stopping power. I have had mud, and still no complaint.
Weaknesses: When it's wet , even raining, I had sufficient stopping power, but not when the black crud is left on, then there is almost no stopping power. If squeaking is occuring I would attribute that to a bent rim that needs truing or debri on the rim.
They're fine. Oil the cable entry and exit points around housing, and oil cantilevers themselves (not rims!) and they work just fine. I wish I had a complaint just to fit-in with these reviews, but, I don't. Thanks acera. :)
Bike Setup: Fisher Joshua, Rock Shox, Bontrager Comps, Chris King
a Cross Country Rider
from nelson, New Zealand
Date Reviewed: September 28, 2001
ok i have acera v-brakes that came oem on my bike, the only complants is that u got to brake earlear in the wet and they make lots of noise once u clean the black stuff off your rim they work fine. i couldent expect nething better n a $800 bike, acera front deralers on the other hand aare crap mine just snaped on me while i was changing gear.
Bike Setup: Saracen X-ess, Rockshox Jetts, Deore throughout, Hayes semi hydraulic discs on deore disc hubs/D521's
Date Reviewed: December 11, 2000
Strengths: Dirt Cheap, handle very smoothly.
Weaknesses: On long downhill streches they can wear out quite a lot. I sometimes had a squeek problem.
These brakes are great if u r starting out and getting into freeride. I've had them for over a year now and when i started out doing easy stuff, they worked great. Now I am going into harder and more stressful stuff I am switching to Magura Hydraulics.
a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: July 20, 1999
Strengths: How other riders can hear you coming from miles away.
Weaknesses: Everything you want to be good in a brake.
These brakes are the worst pieces of trash ever designed. I can't believe shimano could make such trash. When toed-in properly they don't squeek too badly, but they still do. The pads cover your rims with black crap so fast, and they are impossible to adjust. And when you do get your right setup, they come out everytime you take the wheel off. JUst today they bit into my tire, tore it apart and messed up my rim. I'd give em zero chilis, but i can't. Damn this nation. Crappy crap crap i sez! Mr. Happy ain't too happy no more. I hate these brakes. I despise them. I'd rather have coaster brakes. Or nice vee's. mmmm.... vee brakes.... mmm...discs.....mmmmm I hate these brakes. And if you live in toronto, don't ever go to Cycle Logic. worst store, worst service. used to be good, but then new ppl came in. they suck. lousy service. boooo. zero chilis for you too!