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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently attempted to fix the long lever throw that had developed in my XT calipers. As is documented in several places here, I did the piston extension/clean/lube thing. With one of the pistons on my front caliper, I could not get it to retract. This is what was causing the lever throw, the other piston had to compensate. Once re-installed, after one ride the piston was contacting the rotor enough to create significant drag.

I removed the caliper and ordered another, decided to open it up and see what was going on in there. This is what I found:

Light Grey Metal Iron Still life photography

The ceramic pistons on both sides, not just the one that was stuck, had completely deteriorated. I wouldn't even say they cracked. More like disintegrated. So ceramic can serve as the heat shield on the space shuttle but can't hold up to my meat hooks.

Anyone else experienced this with XTs? I'd like some brakes that are light enough for trail use but won't fade on a 3k foot Pisgah descent. Maybe Saint calipers on my current XT levers? SRAM? Magura? Hope? I'm feeling ambivalent about Shimano at this point, I think the last two sets of XTs I have had have suffered from the same problem. They didn't fail outright but definitely had the long lever throw after 6 months or so.
 

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You should send that photo to Shimano customer service and see what they have to say. I would hope they accept some level of responsibility - don't know what the warranty situation is, I would send anyway.
 

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Had the same thing happen on some M785s, was doing some trials style hops and heard a loud cracking sound. Didn't think anything of it at the time, but over the next few rides the brakes started rubbing and acting funny. Wasn't able to rectify the problem so I took the caliper apart and found that the pistons were broken. LBS called Shimano and had them warrantied. I'm currently using Hope Tech3 E4s and find them to be much better brakes.
 

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I could not get my m8000 calipers to stop dragging so I just replaced them. I cant even push the pistons back in easily. Now I want to disassemble and see what is going on.

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Magura MT Trail Sport. It's the cheaper version of the original MT Trail carbon, and comes stock with the HC3 levers - no need to get used to long levers!
Furthermore, with 4-piston front and 2-piston rear, it's the perfect trail brakes~
Pardon my fanboy rant, lol
 

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I replaced with the mt5's but the levers are complete crap. I even tried to use the xt levers just could not get the solid field I like.
I love the power. They are a great value.

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I replaced with the mt5's but the levers are complete crap. I even tried to use the xt levers just could not get the solid field I like.
I love the power. They are a great value.

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Did you try the 1 finger HC levers on the Maguras?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You should send that photo to Shimano customer service and see what they have to say. I would hope they accept some level of responsibility - don't know what the warranty situation is, I would send anyway.
Unfortunately Shimano no longer accepts e-mail communication from customers. I may go the LBS route, we'll see. Just amazed that they could be so poorly designed that they fail in epic fashion after a year of use.
 

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Wow, disintegrated from inside, crazy! I cracked a m8000 piston by pushing it back for a bleed with a flat metal tool causing it to leak all over but that was my fault. I couldn’t imagine how the pistons would fall apart like that. I’d be looking to warranty too!
 

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...Just amazed that they could be so poorly designed that they fail in epic fashion after a year of use.
It may not be a design issue but rather a material or manufacturing issue. Could be a bad batch of material or manufacturing process error.
 

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Magura MT Trail Sport. It's the cheaper version of the original MT Trail carbon, and comes stock with the HC3 levers - no need to get used to long levers!
Furthermore, with 4-piston front and 2-piston rear, it's the perfect trail brakes~
Pardon my fanboy rant, lol
Yeah.. they are great until you catch a lever the wrong way. This happened last weekend on a super minor low speed tip over. Regardless of what their marketing says about the 'carbotecture' body material.. guess what, it's plastic.

I've banged shimanos up in all sorts of ways and never had them bust apart.

Back to my xt's or something different.



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Stuff breaks... I think in the case of the Maguras the lever is much stronger than the body/hinge connection which is a bad combo.

I replaced the m8000’s because I got one of the early right lever assemblies that has issues. Now that they’ve got that sorted I’d rather buy the new m8000 lever for 40.00 than another Magura lever for 60.00.


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Yeah.. they are great until you catch a lever the wrong way. This happened last weekend on a super minor low speed tip over. Regardless of what their marketing says about the 'carbotecture' body material.. guess what, it's plastic.
Before they broke, what did you think of the Trail Sports? Modulation, power, freestroke, bleeding, ect....

Thanks in advance!
 

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Love them in all respects. Superior modulation to the shimanos, at least equivalent power. I even preferred the bleed kit functionality. The only areas where I prefer shimano is in the lever shape/feel, overall more solid feel, and durability.


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