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  1. #1
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    BB-7 or Elixir-5 on my MoonLander?

    My Tallboy has 180/160mm XT brakes and they are everything I could want in a brake.

    I just bought a MoonLander with 160/160mm BB-7's on it. Its 4.7" tires are about the same diameter as a 29'er. The BB-7's brakes don't seem that strong for the bike, at least compared to the XTs on the Tallboy (is this a ridiculous comparison?).

    I have a brand new set of 170/160mm Elixir-5 brakes that we took off of our new Anthem.

    I can use either the 160/160 SS-5 or 170/160 Elixir-5 set on the MoonLander. Which would you do, and why?

    Thanks for your help. I am mostly road, and don't dip into the latest mountain techno much.

  2. #2
    Braille Riding Instructor
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    If setup correctly, those BB7s should provide more than adequate stopping power. I can't compare them directly to Elixir 5s, though.

    And, yeah, comparing BB7s to XTs might be a bit unfair--I haven't ridden Shimano's hydraulic offerings, but from what I've read, they seem to be the Cadillac of braking systems ... for now.

  3. #3
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    BB7s don't feel as nice as some of the better hydraulics but once they're properly set up they require little maintenance and should last a long time. I have 180/160 BB7s on my Moonlander and they're good enough for me. I remember that I was disappointed with mine at first because the pads were slow to settle in.

    I'd say test them out for a few more rides and if it doesn't get better then either get some larger rotors or different brakes. It's your bike and you decide what is right for you.

  4. #4
    Afric Pepperbird
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    Elixir 5's are cheaper oem brakes, but they do feel a lot nicer than my old BB7's. At least this is one man's opinion.

  5. #5
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    Given the all the extra mass of wheels like that I think you have to have good brakes. If you can hit decent speed that is, which obviously depends on your terrain. I'd be tempted to spring for another set of Shimano brakes (SLX perhaps) and ditch the bb7's. I demoed a fatback a couple months back, first time on a fadbike. It was novel, the Q factor KILLED me, but the BB7's were definitely lacking IMO. Not sure what pads they were setup with but it took forever to shut the thing down.

  6. #6
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    Even top-of-the-line hydros suck balls if they aren't setup correctly. Just sayin'.

    To the OP: heed Fatsinglespeeder's advice--go with what works for you.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdparrish View Post
    Even top-of-the-line hydros suck balls if they aren't setup correctly. Just sayin'.

    .
    I can't imagine a setup so bad on an XTR trail or Formula brake that would make it worse than a BB7. Assuming there isn't air in the system everything else is icing on the cake.

  8. #8
    Braille Riding Instructor
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    Quote Originally Posted by customfab View Post
    I can't imagine a setup so bad on an XTR trail or Formula brake that would make it worse than a BB7.
    I can't imagine such a claim being made in this thread.

    I also can't imagine a fatbike attaining anywhere near the speeds of a regular trail bike and therefore requiring a comparable amount of braking force. There's a reason most complete fatbikes come with mechs.

  9. #9
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    BB7 works like harm for me...

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by customfab View Post
    I can't imagine a setup so bad on an XTR trail or Formula brake that would make it worse than a BB7. Assuming there isn't air in the system everything else is icing on the cake.
    Yes, there isn't much to adjust on those brakes anyway. If you take the time to learn how to do it, the BB7 can be adjusted exactly the way you like it. It doesn't have as much stopping power as the Hope Tech M4 that I have on one of my other bikes, but it wins in terms of reliability and adjustability. For the type of riding that one does with a Moonlander it provides enough stopping power (and if it doesn't then get some larger rotors). I'm glad that I have it but I do realize that it doesn't suit everybody, just like everything else.

  11. #11
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    BB7's are going to be cheap and reliable. I have new BB7's on my Krampus and I have more than enough stopping power on 180mm rotors. I'm 210 pounds and the large contact patch of the 29x3" tire provides a ton of braking traction. I don't see how BB7's would be a bad brake if they are set up correctly.
    Mountain bikers who don't road ride have no legs...
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  12. #12
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    Here's what got me thinking about it. Saturday I rode up to a local ski resort, 8 miles and 2000' of elevation. Yeah, it was hard, especially with a 20mph head wind. Even still, it was only 10 minutes longer than my tallboy, and 25 minutes longer than my Wilier road bike. I put in 10psi to ride up, and lowered them to 5 psi to ride on the cross country ski access.

    On the way down, I had that 20mph wind at my tail. Still at 5psi, the Moonlander spun out at about 32mph, but coasted up to 45mph. No kidding, the Garmin data shows 45.0 max. That's as fast as I've ever gone down it on my road bike in still air. Anyway, in that case, the brakes didn't feel that strong, whereas I've never thought about it on the Tallboy with XTs. Oh, yeah, the Moonlander was quite stable at that speed

    OK, new way of stating it, if both braksets had the same diameter rotors, which is capable of the highest clamping force at the pads

  13. #13
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    So it's looking like before your most recent post that nobody's all that encouraging about those Elixir-5's. So I am also wanting to know about these two brake systems and what most folks would recommend ?

  14. #14
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    BB7's or get some sort of Shimano hydros. I have been running BB7s on my bike for years, never bothered with any sort of hydro brake because the BB7s just work.

  15. #15
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    BB7's are great. I use them on my disc trucker touring bike and went down all sorts of stuff fully loaded plus i'm 250lbs so we are talking appx 325lbs of bike and rider. With that said, if it's steep enough they aren't going to bring you to a dead stop right away but generally you probably aren't looking for them to do that either. Most here will tell you ditch the elixirs. Consider bumping up a rotor size on the front of the bb7's as your cheapest initial option. The nice thing is they normally include the proper mount for you to do that so it's just a $20 rotor you need to buy. IF that doesn't work, there are some great deals to be had on Shimano XT brakes especially the older 775's but even the newer 785's can be had for around $110 each.

    Also, keep your eyes on the classifieds as I will probably be selling a pair of great condition xt 775 brakes with tektro 180/160 rotors for pretty short money. If those elixirs you have are brand new takeoffs, you can easily sell the pair for about $100 on ebay.

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