Formula Disc Brake Disc Brake System

3.4/5 (117 Reviews)
MSRP : $369.00


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Product Description

Formula Disc Brakes


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Reviews 1 - 15 (117 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ray a Weekend Warrior from Coppet, Switzerland

Date Reviewed: July 31, 2011

Strengths:    NO Maintenance, parts replacement kits available online, build quality inside the brake looks good, not difficult to rebuild yourself.

Weaknesses:    none that I experienced nor that I could see in the internal mechanics.

Bottom Line:   
This review is for the 4-Racing XC model. Maybe I had good luck but after 7 years without any problems at all, I decided maybe they could use a some tender loving care from the pro's at the lbs. That was only partly successful. I realized later that they had lost the bleed ORs and that made it impossible to repair. They told me it was cheaper to buy some new brakes. I am pretty mechanically minded so decided to try a rebuild myself as I didn't have much to lose. First I disassembled the brakes using the exploded views to see if it was salvagable. The most difficult was to get all 4 pistons blown out. As soon as one blows out you lose pressure. I used a spring clamp to hold back the ones that blowout easiest. And after some fiddling I managed to get them out using a foot pump with 100psi and a nozzel held in the pressure ports. Then ordered the full OR & the MC pump kits from Formula Itay. Replacing the MC pump and all the OR seals easy. Besure to replace all Orings. It only goes together one way so there's no way to install things backwards. Get and read the bleed instructions it works easy if you do it the way Formula tells you. Buy the bleed kit syringes. Also remember to torque to spec.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Jura Mnts

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Purchased At:   OEM on the Lapierre

Bike Setup:   4-Racing + 160mm rotors.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:3
Submitted by rod farquhar a Cross Country Rider from victoria b c canada

Date Reviewed: August 31, 2003

Strengths:    formula b4 dh are pretty that is about all the good i can say about them

Weaknesses:    formula b 4 brakes did not work as well as i was told they would . i could see calipers expanding when appling pressure they squealed from day one and only stopped when warm or hot i found them under powered i contacted khs and they allowed me to return the set of brakes i promptly went out and purchased hfx mag hayes 8 inch and was never so happy after about 5 or 6 actuations i could perform one finger front wheel stands cold and no squeal and vast amounts of reserve power

Bottom Line:   
please do not waste you're time or moner on formula brakes i wasted one month and over a hundred dollars on shipping

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   khs bicycle parts

Similar Products Used:   hayey hfx mag 8 inch

Bike Setup:   porsche fs bike race face xtr group all high end components

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:3
Submitted by rod farquhar a Cross Country Rider from victoria b c canada

Date Reviewed: August 31, 2003

Strengths:    formula b4 dh are pretty that is about all the good i can say about them

Weaknesses:    formula b 4 brakes did not work as well as i was told they would . i could see calipers expanding when appling pressure they squealed from day one and only stopped when warm or hot i found them under powered i contacted khs and they allowed me to return the set of brakes i promptly went out and purchased hfx mag hayes 8 inch and was never so happy after about 5 or 6 actuations i could perform one finger front wheel stands cold and no squeal and vast amounts of reserve power

Bottom Line:   
please do not waste you're time or moner on formula brakes i wasted one month and over a hundred dollars on shipping

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   khs bicycle parts

Similar Products Used:   hayey hfx mag 8 inch

Bike Setup:   porsche fs bike race face xtr group all high end components

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by YaMon a Weekend Warrior from Ocho Rios, Jamaica

Date Reviewed: November 7, 2002

Strengths:    Light...

Weaknesses:    No product support. Weak levers.

Bottom Line:   
Stay the hell away from these if you do not have IS Standard Frame or you ride a Marzocchi Z1. Formula does not make a lot of adapters. make sure you have the adapter in your hand and KNOW for a fact it fits before you buy this. I still cannot imagine why they would make an adapter for the B4 and not the 4 Racing to fit the Zokes Z1 ?? I had to build my own rear adapter so that it fit my frame. Thank goodness I own a wrought iron furniture business and have the tools and materials at my disposal.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Blue Mountain Peak

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $180.00

Purchased At:   Bike Shop

Similar Products Used:   Magura

Bike Setup:   Ellsworth Dare, Z1 MCR, Set up for light Freeriding.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Martin a Weekend Warrior from Bratislava, Slovakia

Date Reviewed: September 2, 2002

Strengths:    Light, strength, modulation.

Weaknesses:    Strenght lasts about 1 descent and than air gets inside the brake. They leak and leak and leak and leak.

Bottom Line:   
This is review for Formula 4 Racing. 4 pistons brake caliper. If you pull out air they brake like no other brakes on the market. But problem is that they work only 1 downhill. Then air gets inside... And they leak through reservoir. I have been trying to get them working for 5 months and it was just wasting time. Forget about Formula it is peace of crap. Save your money and buy something else.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $300.00

Similar Products Used:   Hope, Hayes, Magura, Grimeca, Shimano, XSIV.

Bike Setup:   Scott G-Zero FX25, Marzocchi Z1 Freeride, Formula 4 Racing

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Bman a Weekend Warrior from British Columbia Canada

Date Reviewed: August 13, 2002

Strengths:    NONE!

Weaknesses:    my god! to many to list! these breaks suck!!!! never get into them! take my advise, to not listen to any good reviews u see cuz i did, and i lost $220 on these breaks!!!!

Bottom Line:   
garbage is the only word to describe them! they need constant bleeding, im talking every 3 days, and they will blow out on u half way down a trail! they will NOT work under the following conditions: rain, cold, hot, warm, mild, wet, dry...etc. they hardly work at all! If u like to be flying down a trail and suddenly find out u have no breaks, and u love wasteing hundreds of dollars, then these are for you!!!! and ignore the flaming chili, cuz i would give it a -5 if it would let me. These breaks suck so much shoving my foot between the forks would be more effective.
****DO NOT GO NEAR ANY FORMULA DISC BREAK!****

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Ned's Atomic Dustbin

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month


Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Vegboy a Weekend Warrior from Toronto

Date Reviewed: August 1, 2002

Strengths:    The back brake seems okay.

Weaknesses:    The front brake sucks.

Bottom Line:   
Don't turn your bike upside down. The brake fluid will not only leak out but that stuff will eat through your foot when you walk over your Exxon like spill. I've had to bleed them twice in a month and the guy at the bike shop still shrugs and says he can't seal it up better. His opinion is to get rid of them and that's exactly what i'm doing. After the bleed job braking power still sucks. My girlfriend's cantilevers on her "Autobike" work better. And they don't squeal like running your fingernails down the chalkboard either. STAY AWAY!

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Similar Products Used:   Avid SD5, Shimano LX\XT Vee's

Bike Setup:   2000 GT XCR LE, Marzocchi Z1, Fox Float RC, XT\XTR

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by joseph zacharda a Weekend Warrior from berwyn,il.,usa

Date Reviewed: April 30, 2002

Strengths:    great stopping in all conditions

Weaknesses:    plastic cover over the reservuar has tendency to leak.

Bottom Line:   
i had nothing but good luck w/these brakes. i am still on the original pads. i had to add some brake fluid only ones. i would buy these brakes again.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   kettle,wisconsin

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Purchased At:   porsche usa

Similar Products Used:   magura

Bike Setup:   porsche fs

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Tube a Cross Country Rider from Amsterdam

Date Reviewed: April 1, 2002

Strengths:    Superior control, stopping power, looks, light!!

Weaknesses:    None whatsoever

Bottom Line:   
These Formula 4 Racings are Tha Bomb! very well thought design, cool stopping power(double pistons) and even a built in safety action when ya crash! Choice from 140 160 or 185 discs. Service is tops also, all stuff is in stock. Product is being develloped continuesly. No other brakes on my bike!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Bergen

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $200.00

Purchased At:   www.rizzy.com

Similar Products Used:   Hayes, magura louise

Bike Setup:   Yeti A.R.C., RS SID XC, SRAM 9.0, Race Face cranks, Mavic Cross MAX UST Disc etc.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Luke Krawczyk a Weekend Warrior from Swindon, England

Date Reviewed: March 22, 2002

Strengths:    Formula B4s came set up on the bike (GT Avalanche). Easy to adjust and maintain. Have had to bleed them once as managed to smash a lever due to a bike meets tree at high speed incident, fitting spare parts was a 10 minute job and easy. Stops the bike well for the kind of cross country/freeride type riding that i do. Never had any lever pump up or brake fade at all that used to occur with my Hopes.

Weaknesses:    Levers could be a bit tougher but i guess they are meant to be light weight.
Pads seem to have worn down really quickly in the 3 months that i've had them but that could be due to they large ammount of mud we have to deal with here.


Bottom Line:   
All round a good XC/Freeride brake system, probably wouldn't use for prolonged downhill use. Some parts could be a little stronger. If you want an easy to maintain lightweight system the Formula is a good choice.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Any UK Trails

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   Came with the bike

Similar Products Used:   Hope XC4's and Hayes Mechanical

Bike Setup:   Hardtail set up for Cross Country/freeride.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by sean a Weekend Warrior from calgary,alberta,canada

Date Reviewed: January 27, 2002

Strengths:    great, stop fast and are extremly realiable.

Weaknesses:    I have encountered none, and most likly will never encounter any problems ever.

Bottom Line:   
Great, I think that they beat hayes with no problem. If you have a chance to buy these, but them!! They are great for all round bike setups, full suspension to hardtail. I am going buy another set for my hardtail today! Did I meantion that these are great brakes?

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $900.00

Similar Products Used:   hayes, avid, magua

Bike Setup:   2001 vps launch

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by allen abriel a Weekend Warrior from nashua,NH,USA

Date Reviewed: December 9, 2001

Strengths:    No Fade, Great feel

Weaknesses:    Lack of owners manual on product supplied with bike. Pad availibility

Bottom Line:   
No mechanical problems at all yet. Ride at temperatures from 30F to 90F without any adjustments needed. Noise minimal when dirty. Just cleaning rotors stops squeal.Can't speak for reliability, except no problems at all for six months. When trouble develops will probably just replace with a more widely known name, for parts and repairs. Concept of disc brakes is great. Hopefully won't have to worry about replacement of expensive wheels due to rim wear, like with conventional V pads. Also stopping ability much better than prior V's used.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   FOMBA Manchester NH

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   Came with bike

Similar Products Used:   V-brake XT

Bike Setup:   2000 GT XCR 1500

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by steve a Weekend Warrior from truckee

Date Reviewed: October 19, 2001

Strengths:    this is a follow up review. after replacing the calipers with the newer version these brakes rock! absolutley no complaints with these babies. Thorsten@khsbicycleparts.com was very helpful in contacting me via this site, now I can ride with confidence again!

Weaknesses:    the disks can loosen over time, and develop a rattle. thor sells a repair kit, but it does not work.

Bottom Line:   
now that there is someone out there that can provide product support I think these brakes are an excellent choice

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   mckenzie river trail

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $200.00

Purchased At:   porsche cars of north america

Similar Products Used:   magura

Bike Setup:   Porsche FS

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Global Bob a Cross Country Rider from Canada

Date Reviewed: October 14, 2001

Strengths:    Thorsten at Formula USA. Thorsten at ThorUSA.com
Lightness. The new committment of Formula.


Weaknesses:    Mmmm, ahhh, uhhh, if I had to find any fault it would be with the tiny o-rings that you must watch for if you remove lines or bleed the brakes. They might easily get lost.

Bottom Line:   
This is a follow up to my review on 5/15/01. I've now had a full season on these B4's.

These brakes work and work well. There have been no problems for the whole season. They are light (as light as advertized!), quiet, powerful, good modulation, have great feeling levers, nice beefy lines and connectors.

They are of course XC brakes and come standard with a 160 front rotor and a tiny 140 rear so don't let's hear anyone b!tching about running out of brakes while trying to stop their 230lbs down a ten mile hill. If you're an average XC'er or racer these brakes are for you. This is the lightest disc brake on the market.

For the heavy people there are optional front 185 rotors and 160 or 185 rears. Call Thorsten for his opinion on this - formula@khsbicycleparts.com

There is also the 4-Racing 4-piston version for heavier applications. I used a front 4-R for about four months with great results.

Nice brakes! Formula and Thorsten - take a bow.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   ThorUSA

Similar Products Used:   All Magura's XC brakes.


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chris a Weekend Warrior from Auckland, New Zealand

Date Reviewed: September 25, 2001

Bottom Line:   
Came standard on GT i-drive. My last GT came with the Formula MD-1 cable disc - front-runner for worst bike component of all time. Maybe that design team died of shame, because B4s seem to be living up to their reviews. They work well, have a nice lever shape, modulation and feedback, good power that is getting better each ride (the pads seem slow wearing so it makes sense that they’re slow to bed in), and are mostly silent - some nose when wet - unlike Formula’s dentist-drill cable discs. The design appears to be good if a bit fragile in some areas as a result of efforts to save weight. So far the discs themselves seem relatively robust in crashes but can be tweaked back into alignment if necessary. Reasonably straight-forward to bleed with the bleed kit - contact Thorsten or Erika Schaette at ThorUSA (Thorsten@thorusa.com) for really excellent and prompt service, advice and spare parts - even to the other side of the world. My bleed screws are a sloppy fit when not locked down which allows air to get into the bleed process, but thread tape cured that. I had to make up shims to get the caliper centered over the disc for drag-free running but once done there’s no further adjustment.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months


Reviews 1 - 15 (117 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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


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