1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
    mtbr member
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    My brake pads aren't worn out yet are they?

    Hey guys. I have had my bike since about Feb. Not long ago the disc brakes really went soft while on a long ride. I still had full braking power as long as I pulled far enough. It was obvious that is was just the pads wearing down. I stopped by my bike shop to get a tune up before heading to the trail again. The shop was really busy so they just adjusted the brakes and I was going to take it in for a full tune up later. The next time I went riding the rear brake lever was very hard and they lacked stopping power, at times squealing. I have myself adjusted the cables and placement of the pads and still can't make much of a difference. My only theory is the pads are shot but this seems strange since they still worked well before the bike shop adjustment. I would just take it in for the free tune up but I'm living 200 miles from that shop for the next 3 months and the shops here want $55 for tune ups. So any other ideas rather than brake pads? I you have read this far I thank you and am sorry I wrote so much!

  2. #2
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    If the pad still has plenty of meat left on it they might be glazed and the contact surface appears shiny.This can happen after a long downhill if the brakes have been used constantly . Lightly scuff the contact surface of the pad with some fine-medium grade emery paper and see if that helps.

  3. #3
    pronounced may-duh
    Reputation: Maida7's Avatar
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    Are these hydraulics or cable discs? What brand and model? I agree they sound like they are glazed. Did you break them in properly when you first purchased the bike?

    It's easy to just inspect the pads and see if there is material left on them.

  4. #4
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    It's a Giant Yukon with cable discs. Yeah, there is a good chance they are glazed then. I was going down some crazy hills dragging the brakes the whole way. I'll pop the calipers off tonight and see what we have.

  5. #5
    pronounced may-duh
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    could be an issue with the cable and or housing. Or they just need an adjustment.

    When working on discs be careful not to get any oil or grease on the pads or rotors. Even the oils from your skin will contaminate the pads. Clean your hands with rubbing alcohol before working on your brakes.

  6. #6
    In dog years, I'm dead.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maida7
    could be an issue with the cable and or housing. Or they just need an adjustment.

    When working on discs be careful not to get any oil or grease on the pads or rotors. Even the oils from your skin will contaminate the pads. Clean your hands with rubbing alcohol before working on your brakes.
    If you have oil residue on the rotor, it can be cleaned with alcohol as well.
    Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.... (Ecclesiastes 9:10)

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