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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm pretty new to "all mountain" riding, and I have been upgrading some parts of my XC bike to make it more suitable for the more technical riding that I've been doing since I moved to Arizona from Oregon.

My bike had Avid Juicy Three brakes but I have had a lot of trouble stopping on some of the technical, steep rocks in my area - not to mention two fingers were required to completely stop the wheel, which meant that I would lose some control from the handlebars.

I just replaced my front brake and rotor with a Shimano Deore XT, and moved my (current nicer) brake pads and rotor that were in the front to the rear.

Is it common to have different brakes in the front and rear? Are there any disadvantages to this setup?
 

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Rear brakes do not need to be as powerful, as it is easier to lock up the rear wheel.

I have a 4 piston Hope E4 front brake, and a Hope X2 2 piston rear brake.
Motorcycles do the same. My KTM has a 4 piston Brembo front with 280mm rotor, my rear is a 2 piston Brembo with I think a 200mm rotor. Not uncommon at all, in any two wheel discipline.
 

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I have only run same model front and back, but currently run bigger front rotor. I would say that it is down to how each end "feel". Ideally they should have similar feel....but in the old days where disks were new, people coped with V brakes on the rear and disk up front often.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
This. Different sized rotors are fine, but literally just found out that it is a huge pet peeve of mine when the levers don't feel the same. You might get away with it, but I recommend staying with the same model brakes front and rear.
I'm waiting on a new rotor for my front so I can properly bed in the setup. I'll do some easy rides to see how I like it.

I started with the front brake because I'm a college student and $100 for a new brake and $40 for a rotor is a bit much... if necessary I will replace the rear as well.
 

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Ive had several setups. The worst is having different levers but its not even that bad.

Right.now my front is a.zee lever with a zee 4 piston caliper. And the rear is a saint lever with a deore caliper. Before i bought the zee i had an avid brake that i use when i need a spare brake . It was goofy but still got the job done. The zee and saints have identical levers so it never felt odd.

As far as how common it is , i think most people run identical front and rears.because they buy a.set at a time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ive had several setups. The worst is having different levers but its not even that bad.
I went on my first ride with the new brake today, I really liked it - and having different levers didn't bother me at all. For now I think I'll keep my brake configuration as is, maybe I'll clean up the rear disc/pad and give my Juicy Three some new brake fluid though.

Here's what my setup looks like.


 
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