Avid Elixir 1 Disc Brake System

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Avid Elixir 1 Disc Brake System 

DESCRIPTION

The Avid Elixir 1 Disc Brakes includes everything you need for a completer setup. These brakes are constructed from durable materials that offer immense stopping power every time. Featuring an ambidextrous mount system, versatility is abundant as you are

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 18  
[Nov 13, 2014]
Flator
Weekend Warrior

Strength:

Better than mechanical brakes

Weakness:

Won't hold a bleed more than 6 month even when they work right
"Self adjusting" means if they dragging or mushy you are stuck with it
Difficult bleed procedure

I am sick of fooling with these brakes. Nothing but trouble from the get go. Shop replaced the fronts under warranty after they bled them twice and they still didn't work.
Lever gets closer to your bars as the pads wear, eventually bumping into your hand -- so then your choice is new pads (which are only 1/2 worn) or bleed to add fluid. Pads front + rear = $50. Shop bleed front + rear = $70 - $90.
Tried bleeding them yourself? $50 avid bleed kit is two cheap 60cc syringes that the hospital gets for 50cents, fittings, piston block, and fluid. Guess what - when you apply the slightest negative pressure to suck air bubbles out of the caliper, the tubing or screw fixture leaks! The only thing crappier then these brakes is the bleed kit!

Similar Products Used:

Shimano xt
Avid bb

OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
1
[Sep 10, 2014]
Guilherme

Strength:

Stops the bike easily, no mechanical problems

Weakness:

Noisy when wet

I had this for a year on the downhill bike i made the portuguêse championship, good braking power, no problems, cheap and reliable...I had none of the problems everybody has been talking about, and i really push this brakes to limit in all conditions bottom line buy them !

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Sep 08, 2014]
ezweave
Racer

Strength:

The clamp fills in that pesky gap between your shifters and grips. You won't look like a buffoon who didn't put brakes on his bike.

Weakness:

Stopping your bike.

Long story short: quit XC racing/riding over ten years ago, raced road and CX since, these came on my new Niner and I used them in an endurance XC race where they utterly failed. Despite being set up properly (myself, an experienced mechanic, and every shop mechanic I know who looked at them), they don't work well. Avid's Elixir brakes of all levels have this issue (I've been told).

The brake's engagement point only seems to kick in when the lever is around 40% engaged. Then, the "modulation window" from "modulate" to "lockup" is spongy and springy. Even after bleeding/setup with new pads, I have to squeeze the lever almost to the bar to get them to lockup. Remember that brakes on a mountain bike are half of the steering system. To successfully navigate technical features (like a steep, step down switch back) you often have to lock up, or nearly lock up your rear for a fraction of a second. That is very hard with Elixirs.

In small doses, (the 100 miles of training on technical trails I got to do on the bike before the race), this is tolerable, albeit annoying. In a 50 mile, 5200 feet of climbing 90% singletrack race (much of which was rated at blue if not higher), this was a problem. My descending started to suffer as my hands were too fatigued to brake properly, which meant I had to take long technical descents slowly. After forty something miles of this, my knuckles were bruised (and have been swollen for two days). I had not realized how bad these brakes are.

For the money, you can find Magura MT-2s, Shimano SLX or XT, or better and they all do a much better job of stopping a bike. A quick parking lot test on a semi-Pro's F29 with MT-2s yields immediate shock over just how bad the Elixirs are. The mecahnics I talked to said they were all "pure junk". And "a damn shame" as the old BB7 is still an excellent mechanical, offering strengths precisely where the Elixirs fail.

When I ended my life as an XC teenager, I got into DH/FR and learned to use brakes properly. When I started racing road (I still race road) I learned to use brakes as speed control and less for steering. Had I realized how technical this race was, I would have swapped these out prior. Between the brake problems and an unrelated mechanical with my front DR (1x11 is happening as a result), I lost almost 30 minutes in a 4-5 hour race. Unacceptable. For grins, I pulled out my ten year old HT (which needs to be put of its misery for a litany of reasons, lest of which is limited storage space in the city) with its BB5s and noticed IMMEDIATELY that they had none of the problems of the Elixirs (though would not be as good in terms of pure power, plus "too little too late").

Even if you could manage to prevent this hand fatiguing "pull the lever to the bar" thing with Elixirs, you'll also immediately notice the amount of vertical play in the levers' pivots. Ridiculous. Deore brakes don't have that problem.

SRAM/RS/Avid do so many things right and I'm a long time fan (my road and CX bikes are all SRAM/Quarq'd out), but this is mind boggling.

If you only do mild or short technical descents and fatigue won't be an issue, I suppose they're okay. But only use them if your bike came spec'd with them. If you are buying new brakes, get Shimano or Magura. Same price, but a completely different world. These are almost as bad as the Amp research brakes from the late 90s. Avid owes you an apology if you're cursed with these brakes. In 15 years of riding and racing all manner of bikes I have never used a product that was so bad at performing it's chief function.

Just shocking.

Similar Products Used:

Hayes HFX-9s, Avid Juicy, Magura MT-2 (since then), BB7s, BB5s, old RS Cable Actuated Amp Research Junk, V-Brakes, feet, trees.

OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
1
[Jun 05, 2014]
Bob

Strength:

none

Weakness:

A properly maintained brake that seizes up in middle of long ride leaving a person stranded, even one time, is beyond worthless

Work fine, until they don't. The air in system (even after lbs bleed) causes brake to rub rotor, as heats up, rotor gets tighter until seizes completely. Of course, don't understand what is happening, at least the first time, until too late. Same price for bullet proof shimano deore.that will not need bleed for years. No defense for this in 2013; maybe first disc brakes ever on a mtb, but not today.

OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
1
[Nov 06, 2013]
Flamingtaco

Strength:

Lever is linear and smooth with great adjustment range
More efficient (less tiring/more brake force) than mechanicals
Versus mechanicals, worth every dollar
No more frozen brake cables during winter rides!

Weakness:

Time to make the move to drop price and eliminate all but the best mechanicals as the low-end brakes for MTB's.

Rode rim brakes until just a few years ago, what a shock it was moving into rotors (BB5's). Tens of thousands of miles never gave me trouble with rim brakes (I am a meticulous mechanic), but like disk brakes on cars, set and forget. Install and setup was scary easy, I kept re-checking everything because I feared I had missed something, but no, it really was a super easy install.

Due to my weight (400lbs), I previously upgraded to 203mm Shimano ICE rotors at both ends. Still, it wasn't enough to break loose the rear tire on hard pack trails unless I shifted my weight forward. Bottom end mechanicals at the time (BB5), but still...

An unbeatable deal added a set of Elixir 1's to my component list. Culture shock again! Even these "low end" hydraulics are heads and tails better than typical mechanicals. The level pull is smooth, linear, and predictable, period. It takes a lot less lever input for braking force, so fingers don't tire out early and max force is significantly increased. The piston seal pulls the piston back off the rotor for silent operation (when off the levers). An adjustment screw allows a wide range for setting the position of the levers.

These pads are a little grabby with Shimano's Icetech rotors. Rotors with big stinkin' holes in the braking surface need long pads to cut back on vibration. The rotors chattered and could be felt in the bar and seat with the round BB5 pads. The longer Elixr 1 pads smoothed things out enough to bring in the confidence, but a real hard jam will still induce some chatter and vibration felt in the bar. This is with a 400lb rider... might not be noticeable for a 200lb rider. For me (anyway), I think the only solution for using these rotors is to have long pads under dual pistons.

I rate the value at four chili's because I think they should drop to about $100-120 and replace high end mechanicals. High end mechs should be the only mechs availlable, and should be the bottom-barrel brakes available for MTB.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
[Sep 19, 2013]
Alex

Strength:

- Cheap
- Looks good

Weakness:

- Squeaky
- Low performance

The performance is poor if compared to almost any other hydraulic disk brake I've tried so far. I wouldn't recommend anyone to buy it. It came on my Cobia 2013 but I am looking for an upgrade as it is quite disappointing.

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
3
[Aug 31, 2013]
Corey Saunders
Downhiller

Strength:

they stop you they are good but not great

Weakness:

not build for downhill useless to bleed my avid bleed kit keeped pulling in air they needed bleeding in 2 months hs1 rotors heat up very fast sometimes losing all power

not for dh but they do work need big rotors 180 + for dh i still cant get a good bleed on them factory pads useless burn through them in one 10 min run running nukeproof dh pads now which have lasted 2 months and have half life on them to be honest will work for dh but these r more for light dh/fr but more for xc im buying some avid code r's

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
4
[Aug 31, 2013]
Ernie

Strength:

They stop you hard, handles are fine

Weakness:

Make a horrible gobble noise. Have almost no modulation. Air in rear line from factory

Dont buy these unless you cant afford anything else.

OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
1
[Jul 18, 2013]
rufio
All Mountain Rider

Strength:

They look pretty clean. Stiff construction on the lever so it modulates pretty well. I also find that in this brake the lack of features is a strength, there is not much that can go wrong. Reach adjustment

Weakness:

Nil.

I have had good experiences with this product. They came off my girlfriend's 29er, she maybe had 200 miles on them. We swapped brakes because we were doing some upgrades on her bike to accommodate her smaller fingers to something with a shorter lever and could offer a bit more stopping power; XTs. I put these on a rebuild project of mine, my old Iron Horse MKIII. I'm running 160mm rotors on this bad boy and with the pads properly bedded in, this thing stops on a dime. I run an alloy handlebar on these and they are torqued down pretty tight and the lever is stiff so the power translates well. I don't downhill or anything like that, but for trail riding these are great. However, they are entry level, so they don't have all the features of an Elixir 9 or something like that, but they just work.

Similar Products Used:

Avid Juicy 5 and Avid Juicy 3.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Jun 23, 2013]
Jayem

Strength:

Cheap

Weakness:

TURKEY WARBLE, resonant vibrations allowed to propagate due to caliper design/weight, increases in intensity and can make it impossible to hold on to bike.

Stay away.

Similar Products Used:

Most every other disc brake (and various avid hydros are the only ones I've had this problem with)

OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
2
Showing 1-10 of 18  

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