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  1. #1
    wadeintahoe
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    Need help choosing new hydraulic brakes for my 2002 Giant AC1

    Hi, I recently took a header and broke my rear brake lever housing in half. Since these were the original brakes that came with the bike, I have never bought brakes b4. I ride in Tahoe, and the trails are often very technical, very rocky, tree roots, etc. My bike, being an All Mountain bike weighs in probably 8 to 10 pounds heavier than a tipical cross country bike. In the 40 something pound range is my guess. I am looking for a hydraulic rear and maybe later a front brake.
    Questions:
    1. Is 200mm the same as an 8" rotor.
    2. Any info I need to know or measure for as far as the mounting holes.
    3. Is the hose size standard or do I need to order the right size, or is
    it cut to fit.
    4. What is a Banjo nut or fitting?
    5. Basically, I'm looking for a brake appropriate for an all mountain bike that is ridden on technical trails with great modulation. Probably a two-finger lever, ease of use, proven performance.
    One more thing, this bike has always squeeled like a pig when I am using the rear brake. Soooo annoying! Ive dropped down to a 6" rotor on Giants advice and it still does it. Tried different pads. Any advise on how to fix and avoid this in the future?
    Thank You for you time.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
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    I don't have much experience yet with disc brakes but I do like the Shimano XT I have on my bike so far. They are quiet, except when wet, great stopping power and nice degree modulation.

  3. #3
    usually cranky
    Reputation: b-kul's Avatar
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    id go for whatever shimano brakes are in your budget. by far the best ratio of money to power to ease of maintenance out there. hoses are cut to fit, pretty simple. dont worry about a banjo nut, that wont really come into play. if you have rotors and adapters already all you need to worry about is finding the right brakes.

  4. #4
    007
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    First and most important question: What's your budget?
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: nauc's Avatar
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    x2 on the Shimano XT's
    2010 GT Avalanche Expert

  6. #6
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    Reputation: jmallory's Avatar
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    Shimano XTs and Icetech rotors. Such a nice setup.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Hikers Only's Avatar
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    hands down the Shimano XT's with Ice Tech rotors!

  8. #8
    usually cranky
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    how big a difference do you find the rotors make? im running my xt's with g2 rotors and they are pretty awesome.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
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    The new slx and any xt is a great brake

  10. #10
    Clueless genius
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    Save your money and go for the SLX over the XT. They're essentially the same brake, minus the flashy chrome faceplate and a small adjustment that does next to nothing. The icetech pads in my opinion don't make a whole lot of difference over the non icetech, but the icetech rotors are definitely an improvement over solid steel ones. Worth the extra money? Maybe. That said, "normal" shimano rotors are really damn good too!
    2009 GT Sanction 2.0
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  11. #11
    MTBR Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chikelusmith View Post
    they have the better strength and durability than any other brand
    Can't tell if this is sarcasm or not.

  12. #12
    007
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chikelusmith View Post
    Shimano's are really great..they have the better strength and durability than any other brand so i guess you might wanna stick to them for your requirement..i think that will be great.
    Quote Originally Posted by ncfisherman View Post
    Can't tell if this is sarcasm or not.
    Yeah, I can't tell either . . . Shimano brakes are not category leaders in regard to power or durability.

    Still haven't heard back from OP regarding budget . . . . no point in recommending something until we know what the target pricepoint is.
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  13. #13
    I Tried Them ALL... Moderator
    Reputation: Zachariah's Avatar
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    Shimano XT FTW. Your LIFE depends on brakes, and the XT is the best investment. Shop around....they can be had for under $150/side.
    "The mind will quit....well before the body does"

  14. #14
    mtbr member
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    Hope Tech V4, are awesome, if your budget allows it.

  15. #15
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    Wade

    To answer your questions:

    1. Is 200mm the same as an 8" rotor.
    Yes, 203mm is the most common "8"" size.

    2. Any info I need to know or measure for as far as the mounting holes.
    Your forks and frame probably require IS adapters for the calipers. Most will come with these adapters as calipers are usually now Post Mount.

    3. Is the hose size standard or do I need to order the right size, or is it cut to fit.
    Hose don't come in standard lengths. Measure how long your current hoses or cables are to see what length hoses you'll need. They usually need to be cut and then bled.

    4. What is a Banjo nut or fitting?
    It sits over the hose and is pushed into the caliper/master cylinder by the other hose fittings.

    5. Basically, I'm looking for a brake appropriate for an all mountain bike that is ridden on technical trails with great modulation. Probably a two-finger lever, ease of use, proven performance.
    I used the old 4 piston XTs on my AC and was happy with them. They ended up on my Reign a few years ago. I recently resurrected the AC and put 203mm Avid BB7s on it. I find these as good as my old XTs.

    This bike has always squealed like a pig when I am using the rear brake. Soooo annoying! Ive dropped down to a 6" rotor on Giants advice and it still does it. Tried different pads. Any advise on how to fix and avoid this in the future?
    There are lots of threads on here about this; For some brakes it seems impossible. The Avid hydraulic brakes seem to be the worst offenders.

  16. #16
    usually cranky
    Reputation: b-kul's Avatar
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    some frames actually amplify up the vibration into a squeal, likely your issue, and as wombat said, likely not a ton you can do about it other than avoid avids.

  17. #17
    Nothing can stop me now
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    Hopes. What's your budget?

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