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  1. #1
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    Avid Elixir 1's... Any good?

    Hello, I'm new to the forum and still figuring things out so if this is is the wrong area then my bad. Anyways, I ride a Diamondback sortie 1 and when I got the bike it came with avid BB5's, but for awhile now I've been wanting to go hydraulic. I'm 15 years old and don't have a whole lot of money to spend, I found a set of new avid elixir 1's with the rotors for a fair price, are they any good or is there something better that's around the same price price point.

    Also, anybody know much about the Tektro Orion's? The look great, but do they perform well?
    Last edited by nholden98; 06-11-2013 at 05:44 AM.

  2. #2
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    In a word, no, they aren't any good. Free wouldn't be a fair price; I would literally not even accept them as a gift. They certainly aren't better than your BB5s

    these: Shimano Deore BR-M596 Disc Brake > Components > Brakes > Disc Brakes | Jenson USA Online Bike Shop
    and these: Magura MT 2 Disc Brake > Components > Brakes > Disc Brakes | Jenson USA Online Bike Shop
    are both much better than Elixirs.

  3. #3
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    Thanks, are any of the elixirs bad or just the 1's? I'll look into the ones you mentioned, just curious bout the avids.

  4. #4
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    As a former mechanic, it's my opinion that every Elixir brake is a worthless piece of crap. I've never seen so many brakes that need bleeding fresh from the box, and which are so problematic to bleed. And then there's the stuck levers & pistons, leaky hose fittings, and last but certainly not least, they squeal like a stuck pig. I remember one year when well over half the Elixir brakes on the bikes we sold had to be bled, have parts replaced, or get sent back to the distributor for warranty replacement. Avoid them like the plague.

    As for which brakes to get, Shimano M596. They're affordable & work really well, the only downside is they look a bit plain.

  5. #5
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    Thanks, I'll be sure to look into those. Saved my butt from dropping $$$ on a bad set of brakes

  6. #6
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    They came stock on my bike. They're not great, but they're not horrible, either. The only complaint I have is the squealing. My front brake is fine. The back brake squeals. Actually, it isn't the brake that's doing it. It's the braking action resonating into the left rear seat stay.

    I was about to pull the trigger on a new +/- $600 set of Shimano XTs, but I decided to look into the Elixirs first. If I can stop the resonance, which I believe I can, then I'll be perfectly happy afterward (and save a lot of money, too).

  7. #7
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    Also, I've been riding mine for right at two years now, and have needed to do nothing but replace the pads. No leaks, no bleeding... Nothing short of dependable satisfaction (except for the rear braking resonance).

  8. #8
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    Thanks! I've found new elixir 1's for $110 including 160 and 180mm rotors, I've seen good and bad reviews about them, and honestly I don't have $200+ for brakes because I'm also ordering other things for the bike, stem, tires, chainguide. But I'll continue my research on different sets.

  9. #9
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    Another option is the carbon tektro orions.. They look great, but do they deliver?

  10. #10
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    Someone said free wouldn't be fair for the Elixers, I'd echo that for the Tektro's. To be honest, there's a lot of hate out there for a lot of brands, someone has a bad experience, and everything is crap suddenly. A lot of bikes come with Elixer 1 brakes. Other than being notorious for making noise and being harder to bleed than Shimano brakes, I can't say I've really seen all that much wrong with them. I briefly had a set on my Anthem, but since there WAS actually a manufacturing defect in my front brake, they (Avid) sent me a pair (front and rear) of XO Silvers to replace my Elixer 1's. Those have worked fine for me.

    Here's the thing. If you can afford the Elixers, and not much else that's being talked about, go ahead and get them. They're not going to get you killed, and they'll get you into a set of hydros. If they're set up right, they aren't as noisy as people claim, contrary to what you hear, they can be bled successfully if you follow the directions, and actually, the truth be known, they even work pretty well as long as you're not trying to do down hill races with them. Ultimately, you may decide with money you earn at your job next summer to buy some XT brakes, or whatever. But if you do make that call it will be because of personal experience, and you'll feel better about spending the money. You may also reach the conclusion that I did - the Elixers aren't THAT bad, and some people just refuse to give a chance to anything they've ever had a problem with.

  11. #11
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    XT brakes aren't expensive, get those.

    Would rather drag my feet on the ground than have Elixir 1. Garbage doesn't even begin to describe them and how abysmally awful they are.

    Check out Blueskycycling, you can get XT brakes for $200 for front and rear (everything but the disc).

  12. #12
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    no, went through 3 sets then avid replaced em with xo's. they still suck. why would a company jump ppl up 9 tiers in the line? if you cant afford good set of hydros then go with bb7's. avid can only get mech's right, not hydro's. i just read 2 posts up & yes they could get you killed. i had complete failure on a DH. grab a fist full and hydro weeps from levers. ive had 4 sets of elixers and they all sound like a stuck pig. proper break in was done on the first 3 sets and the 4th i said fvck it

  13. #13
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    Ok thanks guys, I've decided to do some more research and save some more $$$ before going out and buying a set. Usually I wouldn't be so self conscious about spending some money on brakes but I'm also saving for a new specialized, so whatever money is left over can be used on my FS bike, for example the brakes. I'll be sure to steer away from the avids from now on, and look for some XT's

  14. #14
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    Avid Elixir 1's... Any good?

    I would reccommend looking into the SLX brakes, too. Everyone at the shop I work at loves them, including myself. They're pretty much just as powerful as the XTs, but cheaper. They're what I run, and they are amazing.

    Good luck!

  15. #15
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    My old bike came with Elixir 1s which squealed so much I didn't want to ride the bike some days. Avid replaced them under warranty with Elixir 3s which didn't squeal and stopped marginally better. When I built my current bike I went with SLX, and they are head and shoulders above the Avids. There's also a lot of talk about how good the lower tier Deore brakes are, so they may be a more budget friendly option.
    2013 El Mariachi Ti and a motor that needs an overhaul.

  16. #16
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    I put Elixir 1's on my son's bike because I knew he'd outgrow it soon. After a short bout with bleeding them three times, they've been great for a year now.
    Seeing how I got front and rear brakes with rotors for like 89 dollars... I'm not complaining.
    I like turtles

  17. #17
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    I have slx brakes and they work great or you could even say beyond great for the price paid. The looks, feel, consistency and power are all top knotch. Having said that, I also have a bike with elixir 1s and they work pretty good as well. I ultimately prefer the shimanos but I consider the elixirs to be a decent brake system. A good bleed is critical for avids to perform well. I havent had to bleed mine yet, but ive heard its trickier with avids than with shimano.

  18. #18
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    A good bleed or three on the Avids to get them to work marginally well. They're coming off the bike and I feel guilty selling the Avids so I'll probably give them to someone that can't afford real brakes.

  19. #19
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    I can't say I'd have bought them as an "upgrade", but the Elixir1's came on my bike an I've had absolutely zero trouble with them. They stop well, don't fade, and I have not had any noise issues. No issues here.

  20. #20
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    I have a complete set that will be going on ebay real soon. How much you think I could get for them? $200? Maybe $150? Surely $100? j/k... Might as well just give them away, uh? :-)

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by dshoe70 View Post
    They came stock on my bike. They're not great, but they're not horrible, either. The only complaint I have is the squealing. My front brake is fine. The back brake squeals. Actually, it isn't the brake that's doing it. It's the braking action resonating into the left rear seat stay.

    I was about to pull the trigger on a new +/- $600 set of Shimano XTs, but I decided to look into the Elixirs first. If I can stop the resonance, which I believe I can, then I'll be perfectly happy afterward (and save a lot of money, too).
    Had the same issue with elixir 3s. Purchased Serfas pads from Jenson USA and now they're fine. Cheap too.
    Please donate to IMBA or your local IMBA chapter. It's trail karma.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by dshoe70 View Post
    I have a complete set that will be going on ebay real soon. How much you think I could get for them? $200? Maybe $150? Surely $100? j/k... Might as well just give them away, uh? :-)
    I got brand new ones on ebay last year for 89 bucks.
    I like turtles

  23. #23
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    I think I saw them at one of the online stores for $42 so maybe you could get $50 for the set.

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