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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i've been reading posts on this board and talking with just about anyone i can about upgrading to discs and i seem to be getting totally different answers everytime i ask. i've only tried deore hydros on an enduro and hope mono minis on a custom bike at liberty bikes. i've heard that every brand is pretty much garbage from lbs's i've talked to, some say magura rocks, others it sucks. some love hope mono mini's others don't. some said go for avid cable discs some said why waste your money.

so i figured this would be my last ditch effort before just going with whatever i could find that seemed to be a good deal.

i ride mainly in dupont and pisgah national forests with road training in between. i'd like some brakes that don't weigh a ton. i'd like some hydros because i like the feel better than cable. please give me some solid advice.
 

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FuelFan90 said:
i've been reading posts on this board and talking with just about anyone i can about upgrading to discs and i seem to be getting totally different answers everytime i ask. i've only tried deore hydros on an enduro and hope mono minis on a custom bike at liberty bikes. i've heard that every brand is pretty much garbage from lbs's i've talked to, some say magura rocks, others it sucks. some love hope mono mini's others don't. some said go for avid cable discs some said why waste your money.

so i figured this would be my last ditch effort before just going with whatever i could find that seemed to be a good deal.

i ride mainly in dupont and pisgah national forests with road training in between. i'd like some brakes that don't weigh a ton. i'd like some hydros because i like the feel better than cable. please give me some solid advice.
Yeah there's lots of opinions on disc's but it all really comes down to is SETUP!

#1. true your brake tabs (usally done at a shop)

#1a. DO NOT use a shop that isn't willing or can't do #1

#2. keep your rotors and pads way away when you bleed the system (use a shim or something in place of the pads)

#3. elevate the system both rear up then front up twice when doing the bleeding process.

#4. if you have to do the bleeding process more than let's say 3-4 times in the same session either the brakes have something wrong with them or you are doing something wrong.

#5. when in doubt go to a professional

I have used XT 4 piston,Hayes,magura (clara,louise,marta) grimeca,avid mech.,and now Hope mini mono's 180mm fr,160mm rr. (the best feel and quality of the bunch IMO)

Smilie
peace, D.
 

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lets say just this, if your shop says all disc brakes are garbarge, than obviously they are not having a good time working witht them....

( meaning they really do not know anything about the discs they are working on )

would be interesting if they also say that all front suspension is garbarge ??? Anyone wants a Schwinn 10 speed or a Peugeot px10 ???
Sorry that I get a little miffed about this, as the Industry has spend millions to educate dealers and enable them to repair/setup every brand of disc brakes.

First look for a new dealer ! ....
Than get disc brakes .....

Brakemeister
 

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If I would habe a bag full of money laying 'round... I'd get some Hope Minis or Formula B4's. I've herad nothing but good things about them.

IMHO, any disc brake is a very good brake if wrenched properly.

If you don't want to mess with set-up go for something by Avid. They're basically idiot-proof. Even trying you would have a hard time trying to set them up wrong (I´m exagerating a bit, but it's to give you and idea of how easy are them to set-up, either mechs or Juicy's).

If you don't mind wrenching a bit and are a gearhead willing to master on brake maintenance and set-up, get some Magura. If set-up properly they're Top Shelf stuff.

With Hayez you're kinda guessing... you could get a nice trouble-free set of brakes or just the opposite.

For Shimano... Not to many people complain about them but some XTR users had been complaining about problems with non-retracting pistons which is annoying once you spent that amount of money in an XTR part. We all are still trying to figure it out why Shimano abandoned the four piston XT.... silly mistake from them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
thanks for the help.

right now i'm leaning towards the mono minis since i've heard fewer negatives about them than all the others except for the juicys.

one last question:
why is it exactly that maguras have gotten the rep of being so finicky or hard to work on?
 

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We have had all of the following & they all worked

Discs: Formula Hydraulics, Avid Cable (2 sets), Magura Louise ('04 model),
Rim: Avid Ti, Avid Mags, XT, STX, LX, Magura HS33's, RSX (older road) and Tektro.

They all worked. None sucked.

In fact, I have never had a piece of bicycle equipment that sucked right down to your lower level Deore components.
 

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FuelFan90 said:
I've heard that every brand is pretty much garbage from lbs's i've talked to, some say magura rocks, others it sucks. some love hope mono mini's others don't. some said go for avid cable discs some said why waste your money.
I'll give you some solid advice as I've been around disc brakes just about as long as anyone around here except for Thorsten the Brakemeister. I also instigated, help write and edited the disc brake FAQ at the top right of this page.

Don't believe ANYONE who tells you that a certain make of brake is garbage. There are bad samples of EVERY brake out there but NO bad makes of brakes in general. There are a lot of bad "mechanics" and lots of ignorance in general but no bad makes of brakes.

For instance, ask on this forum about Formula cable disc brakes and you won't get too many favorable comments. I'm talking about their present cable disc and not the old MD1.

Now go look at the Product Reviews on them. The link is up on the top right under my FAQ. There are some wonderful reviews.

I had a set of these on my bike for a 5 week test about three years ago. After my test I bolted them on a lady racers bike I mechanic. She's raced these brakes to many first place finishes since then (I can't remember the last time she didn't win) and she loves them. They have not let her down and I just re-adjust them every week.

Oh by the way, I've seen these brakes advertised at $25 per end.

Then somone here tells you that Maguras are troublesome to set up and not for first timers. Hello! My first disc brakes were Maguras and I've had many Maguras since then, never had a setup problem (not even with the first set!) or a reliability issue since. I run the Magura Cult and talk to hundreds of happy Magurites.

Same with Formula. Their last year's B4SL has got to be the best xc disc brake I've ever used (I tested mine for two years).

The N.Am importers of both the above brakes are the finest people in the world at looking after their customers.

Sure we all have our most favorite and least favorite brakes but the smart guy (the one you can trust!) won't run any of them down. But what he will do is to point out the facts and features of each type and let you go check out the reviews in Product Review.

That way, you can make the best educated decision possible without being a victim of rumor, inuendo and incompetance.

"...why is it exactly that maguras have gotten the rep of being so finicky or hard to work on?"

Can't help ya there. I had a set of Magura Marta that took less than an hour to install and didn't require one second's work in the two years they were on my bike. I did a few test bleeds (I write about bleeding so sometimes I bleed just to check out a method) and there was nothing "finicky or hard to work on" about them.

Oh by the way, you asked about Avid - the Avid cable disc is a great brake (how could so many reviewers be wrong?) but they are the world's heaviest xc brake.

Mike T. (mcm # 717 & FOG)
 

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I can think of a reason or two more...

The first should be found under the FAQ. Its the fact that some disc brake pads take a little bit to get properly bedded in before they really grab. I put an avid 203 on the front end of one of my bikes yesterday. And right out of the box... it had nothin. And I knew that right out of the box it would have nothin. Because it hasn't had time to get bedded in yet. Compare that to some good rim brakes which are at their best when they're brand new, and it'll be hard for any sales guy to know any better until he's tried a disc brake that's been properly run in. And so many people try something once or twice, and form an opinion quickly.

I dunno. Find someone with a bike that has a rim brake on one wheel, and a disc on the other. You can see they feel very different. And the initial test squeze might make the disc feel less powerful, simply because it won't get a hard register like you would with a rim brake. It ramps up much more slowly. Some folks might not like that.

Another possibility... you were talking to salesmen, not mechanics. Some salesmen by nature will know less than mechanics about the bikes they're selling. So if you take one that hasn't had much experience with discs, and all he hears from people who only ride a brand new bike once around the block is how the brakes didn't feel too good... Well, you get the idea. Put another way, salesmen don't get the experience of the lifetime of the bike or the product, unless it's on their own bike. And last year was a rough year for bike sales, meaning not too many of them could easily afford discs for their own bikes. All they usually get is a mixed bag of customer opinion which is based on a test ride. That's where a lot of their experience comes from in some cases. I'm not saying that's all salesmen, and in some cases, you'll get one who knows a little more. Most of the ones in the shop i worked in figured discs were nice, but that they weren't very reliable yet, weren't so easy to set up just yet, but that discs would "get there." None of them knew how I could install my Avid discs on my Trek. I had to come in here to the boards for that. (All hail to the gurus)

I've fallen in love with avid's rim brakes. I'll agree to a point with an opinion voiced earlier, that there isn't really a bad rim brake, all the way down to Deore. Maybe so. But some are much better than others. I weigh 260 on a good day, and I commuted up and down a hill for 2 years. I know about needing to stop, and I've tried a few different brakes. OEM promax, Shimano XT, (levers and brakes... don't waste your money) and Avid SD7 (levers and brakes). Give me an avid SD7 set (levers and brakes) any day. I even tried the Avid Ultimate on one bike. A very nice brake, but not much stronger than the 7. Not evnough to justify cost, anyway. But man, is it pretty... If I ever have to retire it, I'm mounting it on a cut down fork and turning it into coffee table art.

I was riding up and down a hill every day. I had a brake fetish. So naturally I tried the avid disc on my XC ride. Out of the box... they had nothin. After a short ride or two...

Well, V-brakes grab right away. When you apply them, you know it right away. Which is good in many situations. And for many, it's confidence, inspiring. Granted, those are the same folks who think that being able to lock up a rear wheel and slide is the true test of braking ability. But if you're on loose gravel, wet grass, or any other kind of not-quite traction scenario, that grabbiness can be downright pucker inducing.

Discs don't grab right away. When you first start applying them, they come on much more slowly. It's nice for scrubbing off a lttle bit of speed, and keeping control on gravelly hills. When you're in a panic stop mode, there's not much better than a disc brake. Most of the folks I used to talk to in here will all testify to being able to stop with one finger. For someone who wants to lock up the back wheel just by touching the lever, that's not going to be the best selling brake out there.



I can think of a lot of variations on the topic.
My disc brakes can also stop me on a dime if I need them to.
 
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