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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Who's got rides in on their XTR Trail brakes?

3 rides in and mine have not developed the power I was hoping for. I've never had a brake that didn't bed in in this much riding.

They feel about as strong as the current-gen XTs (which I sold in hopes of finding more power) and not as strong as my old Elixir CRs.

How firm are your levers? Mine are slightly spongier than I would have expected, but equally so, left to right. I assumed this was because they were over-leveraged and a byproduct of massive power. No noise (even less than the usual semi-metallic pad sound), vibration or contamination. New XT RT76 rotors 203/160.

Input is appreciated. If this is all I can expect, then I need to know if the lever will mate up to a Saint caliper, I guess.
 

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The lever will work with a Saint caliper yes.

As for the power, I don't believe the XTR should have much if anymore than the XT you had. You're paying for lighter weight.
 

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WOW... The power and feel on my buddy's brakes are amazing. Super firm lever and the ability to lock-up with one finger. Something is probably wrong.
 

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Onetrack said:
WOW... The power and feel on my buddy's brakes are amazing. Super firm lever and the ability to lock-up with one finger. Something is probably wrong.
You have to figure that one persons "feel" is going to be different from someone else. So going by "feel" especially over the interwebz, is going to be interpreted differently.

He said that the power feels like the current XTs according. There might be absolutely nothing wrong with them. Shimano advertised that the Trails offer 25% more braking power than the last gen XTR brakes. IIRC, the last gen XTR brakes didn't have as much power as the XT's due to the lack of the servo wave system.

So, maybe, just maybe, that the new XTR's are fine and that the power is not as much as expected.
 

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XTRs are all about weight savings as mentioned by others here. The last gen XTR brakes really sucked from what I hear so a 25% increase in power would still put them in low power level as far as what disc brakes are capable of.

Sorry that you thought XTRs would ever be a performance upgrade over XTs. You did save some weight and I do believe that they will gain a little more power over time.

Spongy levers almost always indicate air in the system somewhere which will lower the cabability of any brake's power. Definately bleed them.
 

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D.F.L. said:
Who's got rides in on their XTR Trail brakes?

3 rides in and mine have not developed the power I was hoping for. I've never had a brake that didn't bed in in this much riding.

They feel about as strong as the current-gen XTs (which I sold in hopes of finding more power) and not as strong as my old Elixir CRs.

How firm are your levers? Mine are slightly spongier than I would have expected, but equally so, left to right. I assumed this was because they were over-leveraged and a byproduct of massive power. No noise (even less than the usual semi-metallic pad sound), vibration or contamination. New XT RT76 rotors 203/160.

Input is appreciated. If this is all I can expect, then I need to know if the lever will mate up to a Saint caliper, I guess.
Did you shorten the line and then do a complete bleed ?? I would say that xt type power is to be expected,with that said my xt have nice stopping power.
If your looking for monster stopping power try saints,hope v-2 (nothing short of mindblowing) or stroker ace.
I was told by shimano c.s. that the hose is not compatible with other brakes in the shimano line,so call them if you going to do a swap out.
 

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frdfandc said:
You have to figure that one persons "feel" is going to be different from someone else. So going by "feel" especially over the interwebz, is going to be interpreted differently.

He said that the power feels like the current XTs according. There might be absolutely nothing wrong with them. Shimano advertised that the Trails offer 25% more braking power than the last gen XTR brakes. IIRC, the last gen XTR brakes didn't have as much power as the XT's due to the lack of the servo wave system.

So, maybe, just maybe, that the new XTR's are fine and that the power is not as much as expected.
Couldn't agree more--lever feel is a very personal thing. Some people get used to the hard stop feel of Elixr's and think that's how a brake should feel. They then try Hopes, which typically have a very progressive resistance in the lever (no hard stop, and more like a car), and think they are mushy. Go the other way and you'll think the Elixr's have no modulation. It's personal preference.

I have not used the XTR trails, but have heard that they offer a more progressive lever feel. If you don't like that, you should get some XO's or even Codes. Not sure about the power.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I pulled the pads last night and they were unusually dark. I emery-ed the surface and cleaned the rotor with alcohol. I'll see what happens on the next ride.

The lever 'squish' does not feel like they're in need of a bleed. They do not become progressively firmer with pumping, and both sides are pretty even (with the rear being slightly softer due to added hose length)

If XT-strength is all I can reasonable expect, then so be it. Initial web reviews sounded promising, so I thought I'd give them a shot. I tend to want something that's too strong for most guys, so if I need to go to a The One, V2 or Saint, I will.

I appreciate the input and hope that people post more as more brakes get out there.
 

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D.F.L. said:
I pulled the pads last night and they were unusually dark. I emery-ed the surface and cleaned the rotor with alcohol. I'll see what happens on the next ride.

The lever 'squish' does not feel like they're in need of a bleed. They do not become progressively firmer with pumping, and both sides are pretty even (with the rear being slightly softer due to added hose length)

If XT-strength is all I can reasonable expect, then so be it. Initial web reviews sounded promising, so I thought I'd give them a shot. I tend to want something that's too strong for most guys, so if I need to go to a The One, V2 or Saint, I will.

I appreciate the input and hope that people post more as more brakes get out there.
You should like we like the same style of brake....trust me,go for the hope v2, saints are great but the hopes out bling them and are a bit more stopping power,hold off on the Ones
 

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D.F.L. said:
I pulled the pads last night and they were unusually dark. I emery-ed the surface and cleaned the rotor with alcohol. I'll see what happens on the next ride.

The lever 'squish' does not feel like they're in need of a bleed. They do not become progressively firmer with pumping, and both sides are pretty even (with the rear being slightly softer due to added hose length)

If XT-strength is all I can reasonable expect, then so be it. Initial web reviews sounded promising, so I thought I'd give them a shot. I tend to want something that's too strong for most guys, so if I need to go to a The One, V2 or Saint, I will.

I appreciate the input and hope that people post more as more brakes get out there.
hehe, how about trade you my M810 saints for your XTR trails? ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I really just want maximum power up front. I brake heavily with the front and love when the front sketches around for traction, throwing dirt clods, and momentarily locking. While I don't normally advocate skidding, I somehow think locking the front wheel is pretty damn cool.

I got in another ride today and the brake just doesn't have enough at higher speeds. A couple of friends tried my bike and felt they were working great, so I'm confident there's nothing wrong. I hope this thread doesn't scare anybody away from the XTRs, wrongly.

I guess I'll consider a Saint caliper vs a whole new set from another maker.
 

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First, according to Shimano the levers aren't interchangeable. So maybe yes, maybe no. I've heard that they are quite a bit more powerful than XT so you need to bleed and maybe change or sand your pads a little. Personally I'm addicted to Saint 810's with 203mm rotors.....
 

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I have all of the parts in to set up the xtr trail levers to the Saint calipers. All of the fittings mate up fine so we'll see if there are any issues. Just need to bleed to verify they work fine. Ill update once I have some trail time on them. Dang love the new xtr levers, they look awesome!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
The brakes have gotten a bit stronger since I first posted. Everyone who has tried them falls in love, immediately. If I do swap to something else, I'm going to miss the XTR's levers; they're the best I've felt.

I just wish I had the extra power lost to the larger 29" wheel. With that extra oomph, I think they'd be perfect. (time to patent a 26/29 switch for brakes? (; )Thanks for the tip on the pads. I've always stayed with stock Shimano, but will seek out another set.

And do some index finger exercises.
 

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Changing pads will probably be enough... Or you could always go to a bigger rotor in the front. Oh wait you're already with an 8 inch... and lacking power?
 
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