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  1. #1
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    160mm vs. 183mm front rotors - Worth the weight?

    I'm setting up a new XC/AM bike, and revisiting the 160 vs. 180/183 mm front rotor size debate. For almost all my set ups, I spec a larger front rotor, since I've heard that stopping power is 80% performed by the front, and since I ride in the hilly bay area. Now that I'm paying a little more attention to saving weight, I wonder if the extra rotational weight of a 180mm rotor is worth the additional stopping power over the 160mm rotor. Has anybody done any direct performance comparisons? If yes, then what is your impression? Thanks in advance.
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  2. #2
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    I would think your body weight has some factors also. my am bike has the bigger rotors and they stop me much better than my cross country bike does with the smaller rotors.
    I am also 6 foot 1 205lbs. so an average size person may not be able to tell.

  3. #3
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    If your hilly area is steep and calls for quick, hard braking then YES, go 180 up front. I started with 160 up front and switched to 180 after my brakes kept heating up and screaming. The switch to 180 eliminated overheating of front and rear and the difference in power is incredible!

    GO 180! GO 180! Go 180!
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  4. #4
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
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    Quote Originally Posted by awai04
    I'm setting up a new XC/AM bike, and revisiting the 160 vs. 180/183 mm front rotor size debate. For almost all my set ups, I spec a larger front rotor, since I've heard that stopping power is 80% performed by the front, and since I ride in the hilly bay area. Now that I'm paying a little more attention to saving weight, I wonder if the extra rotational weight of a 180mm rotor is worth the additional stopping power over the 160mm rotor. Has anybody done any direct performance comparisons? If yes, then what is your impression? Thanks in advance.
    You will never notice the "extra" weight. You will notice the difference in braking.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by awai04
    I'm setting up a new XC/AM bike, and revisiting the 160 vs. 180/183 mm front rotor size debate. For almost all my set ups, I spec a larger front rotor, since I've heard that stopping power is 80% performed by the front, and since I ride in the hilly bay area. Now that I'm paying a little more attention to saving weight, I wonder if the extra rotational weight of a 180mm rotor is worth the additional stopping power over the 160mm rotor. Has anybody done any direct performance comparisons? If yes, then what is your impression? Thanks in advance.
    the rotor weight is so close to the center of rotation that it has no where near the same effect as rim or tire weight, plus the difference in rotor sizes can be quite small

  6. #6
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    Sounds like we have a consensus.
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  7. #7
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    weight?

    Like Shiggy said,weight would be unnoticeable.If you are a real weight wienie you could get ti bolts.

  8. #8
    Dame veneno q kiero morir
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    you may plus the weight of the calliper adaptor, is quite low, as the difference between 160 VS 180mm. And some times the screws need to be larger.

    Instead I mount 180mm. disc front in all of my XC bikes. As you said I cant notice the plus of weight but the plus of braking power is notable.
    Learning English !!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    You will never notice the "extra" weight. You will notice the difference in braking.
    Eloquently stated. I tried 160mm for both front and rear for my Elixir CRs for about a month. Just couldn't get it dialed in to what I liked...until I sprung for a 185mm up front. Now they feel wonderful...and the gain of 23 grams or so wasn't noticed at all.

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