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  1. #1
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    black or chrome.

  2. #2
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    2012 XT vs. SLX brakes

    There doesn't seem to be much of a difference except price. Any words of advice?
    Last edited by lancelot; 09-13-2011 at 09:12 PM.

  3. #3
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    XT has forged levers, SLX does not. XT also adds free stroke adjustment.

  4. #4
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    Does anyone know what the free stroke does? I played with it on my XT and XTR brakes and can't tell a difference no matter how far I screw it in or out.

  5. #5
    g3h6o3
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    I noticed it changes the amount you can push (not pull) on the lever but it doesn't seem to have much of an impact on the brakes performance/feel.
    Check out my SportTracks plugins for some training aid software.

  6. #6
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    Sounds like you guys are talking about connecting rods and pistons.... do you really need forged levers? Has anybody ever broke a regular lever?

    I too am wondering if they are worth the upgraded price over the SLX??

    Quote Originally Posted by bengxe View Post
    XT has forged levers, SLX does not. XT also adds free stroke adjustment.

  7. #7
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    I've never felt the SLX levers, but I imagine the forged XT levers flex less and so may give you better feel.
    I bought XT because from what I found at the time, there wasnt much price difference.

  8. #8
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    I've never felt the SLX levers, but I imagine the forged XT levers flex less and so may give you better feel.
    I bought XT because from what I found at the time, there wasnt much price difference.


    I've been thinking of buying a set of Shimano XT brakes myself for use one of my hardtails. I want something with better modulation than the Code 5's on my other hardtail yet more power than the Elixir R's that are currently installed.

    However the SLX versus XT debate is interesting. Everyone seems to love the XT's and they compare favorably with the XTR Trails. The SLX's seem to be great brakes but haven't had the same acclaim and praise as the XT's. There's also the price factor the SLX's aren't that much cheaper,this could be both good and bad. This may mean that the SLX's are the same brakes as the XT's but with some element of cost savings built in. On the other hand this may also be a bad thing because the XT's may because they have more functionality and quality for a only marginally higher retail price.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mefistofeles View Post
    Everyone seems to love the XT's and they compare favorably with the XTR Trails. The SLX's seem to be great brakes but haven't had the same acclaim and praise as the XT's.
    I think the issue is that fewer people have reviewed/talked about the SLXs. I think they're great and have only read good things about them. It would be interesting to compare them side by side...

  10. #10
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    The SLX uses a cotter pin to secure the brake pads...the XT's use a threaded allen pin. As for the different material for the handle, it's more for weight savings, not much, also there's more of a texture on the XT levers. Lastly, the free stroke adjustment is for when the piston engages the fluid in the cylinder...when making this adjustment it feels pretty much the same as the reach adjustment...both control modulation depending on how you look at it...just my 2...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by zenkem View Post
    The SLX uses a cotter pin to secure the brake pads...the XT's use a threaded allen pin.
    Just noting that the SLX caliper can use the threaded allen bolt. I ordered them for mine. Also, am I the only one who as trouble not scratching the caliper trying to bend those pins??

  12. #12
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    Timely thread for me. I'm trying to put together an XT build kit, and brakes have me confused. There are combination shift/brake levers, like here:

    Shimano XT ST-M775 Disc Brake/ Shift Lever Set

    Is that what I should get? What about rotors? How do you determine what size rotors you need, and what size rotors will fit your bike?

    Does anyone offer package deals that are cheaper than buying the components individually?

    I'm building up an SC Blur LT2 with a Talas fork.

    Thanks.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    Timely thread for me. I'm trying to put together an XT build kit, and brakes have me confused. There are combination shift/brake levers, like here:

    Shimano XT ST-M775 Disc Brake/ Shift Lever Set

    Is that what I should get? What about rotors? How do you determine what size rotors you need, and what size rotors will fit your bike?

    Does anyone offer package deals that are cheaper than buying the components individually?

    I'm building up an SC Blur LT2 with a Talas fork.

    Thanks.
    Never delt with that setup, as for rotors it's totally up to you and how you ride and your trail conditions. I run 180's front and back on my 29er because I'm a Clyde and it makes me feel good...my 26er has 180 front and 160 rear...

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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsilva View Post
    Just noting that the SLX caliper can use the threaded allen bolt. I ordered them for mine. Also, am I the only one who as trouble not scratching the caliper trying to bend those pins??
    I didn't know that, I guess I need to take a better look at my SLX's...

  15. #15
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    From another thread in this forum:

    2012 XT brakes--HOT deal

    I don't know what prices for SLX are like, but at $120 per wheel, INCLUDING rotors, I don't think this price can be beat. Caveat is that the rotors might not be the ones you want.
    The secret to mountain biking is pretty simple. The slower you go the more likely it is you'll crash. ~Julie Furtado

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by zenkem View Post
    Never delt with that setup, as for rotors it's totally up to you and how you ride and your trail conditions. I run 180's front and back on my 29er because I'm a Clyde and it makes me feel good...my 26er has 180 front and 160 rear...
    Thanks for the response. I weigh 230 lbs, so I was thinking about 180 front and 160 rear.

    What determines "center lock" or "6 bolt"?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsilva View Post
    Just noting that the SLX caliper can use the threaded allen bolt. I ordered them for mine. Also, am I the only one who as trouble not scratching the caliper trying to bend those pins??
    Where did you order the threaded bolts from? I have the SLX brakes and don't care for the bendable pin setup.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    What determines "center lock" or "6 bolt"?
    Your hubs. You can get adapters to fit six bolt rotors to centerlock hubs, but not vice versa.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Porschefan View Post
    From another thread in this forum:

    2012 XT brakes--HOT deal

    I don't know what prices for SLX are like, but at $120 per wheel, INCLUDING rotors, I don't think this price can be beat. Caveat is that the rotors might not be the ones you want.
    Also may not be the pads you want. Those are probably OE parts, I dont know why theyre not labeled as such. Still a very good deal, I wish that was available when I bought mine.

  20. #20
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    XT vs. SLX weight difference. Both were front with un-cut hoses.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2012 XT vs. SLX brakes-dsc00239.jpg  

    2012 XT vs. SLX brakes-dsc00244.jpg  

    The LPG

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by lancelot View Post
    XT vs. SLX weight difference. Both were front with un-cut hoses.
    That's funny, what's the chance?
    And I love beer!!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    That's funny, what's the chance?
    I was pretty shocked. I thought the XT's would have been about 10-20 grams lighter. I'm almost afraid to weigh my XTR's.
    The LPG

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by kentgbr View Post
    Where did you order the threaded bolts from? I have the SLX brakes and don't care for the bendable pin setup.
    I got them from Amazon. Here's the link:

    Amazon.com: Shimano Pad retention pin+clip, XTR-M965 ea: Sports & Outdoors

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by lancelot View Post
    I was pretty shocked. I thought the XT's would have been about 10-20 grams lighter.
    +2 WOW!!!

  25. #25
    Lindsay
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsilva View Post

    That particular pad retention axle has a screw driver head that's easily damaged while tightening or loosening. Universal cycles has the allen bolts type for sale.

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