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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mountaindavis's Avatar
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    Jun 2010

    ... and if we just ... 2012 Shimano XT's replaced my 2010 Elixir 5's

    I finally got the chance to try out my new Xt's that replaced my Avid Elixir 5's. I only changed the brakes, not the rotors. Holy crap! I just didn't know---I don't really ride many of my buddies bikes and those that I have taken out are all older than mine so no one had "great brakes". I just didn't understand the difference between mediocre brakes and holy $hit stopping power! Totally impressed. The stopping power is extraordinary--and I am not talking about "I love my new stuff wanna brag" thing either--they are that good.

    Supposed to go for a big ride today but totally screwed up when adjusting the caliper to keep from rubbing. I know the "hold brake lever with caliper loose" technique--always works the charm--but I was suffering from some caliper creep when tightening down the bolts so I was holding the caliper steady with my hand. And I spun the wheel to make sure it was staying aligned without rubbing and I caught my finger between the spinning spokes and the caliper. Now I can't use my brake finger as my nail is black-and-blue and it is swollen to the point of being too painful to squeeze the brakes. Sort of ironic that my brakes broke my brake finger (not actually bone broke, mind you).

    So, quickly about the caliper creep when tightening bolts--the key for me was to tighten the bolts a little at a time and alternating between the two bolts. I always did that, but "little at a time" is now much smaller. I am talking about a itsy bit at a time, practice patience small. like 10 degrees at a time, maybe less, and it worked perfectly, no creep.

    Anyway, great brakes. I used a Shimano 180mm spacer and filed down an old CPS washer to 2.5mm thickness and mounted the calipers to use with my 185 Avid rotor. I am going to upgrade to the Ice-tech rotors when $$ allow, but this system is working great as is.

    when getting new Ice-tech rotors, I am going with the 160mm in back and either the 203 or 180 in front--I am on a 29er, Gary Fisher Rumblefish. I am imagining that for my XC/Am style that 180's may be fine, not really sure--anyone care to offer up advice between 203/180 for the front?


  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Shalom's Avatar
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    Nov 2008
    Great that you have found the love with new brakes.

    As for rotor size, I would personally pair it up 180/160 or 203/180. If 160 on the back is fine for you, then chances are that 180 on the front should be good.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Bike radars review of the XT brakes said they were so powerful, you could use smaller rotors:

    Shimano XT M785 Disc Brake — First Ride Review - BikeRadar

    I don't know if you've seen it, but there is a thread about a manufacturing defect with the XT M785's:

    Love the new 2012 XT brakes

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mountaindavis's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    Thanks for the heads up with the troubles--I inspected everything and things look good for now but I will certainly keep an eye one them. I went to Shimano's website so I could register the brakes in case they do a recall or hose replacement, but although I found their registration area, it looks like these components don't have such a thing. Too bad--you would think that with something as important as brakes, they would want to reach you in case they found an issue. Guess not.

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