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  1. #1
    mtbr member
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    DOT 5.1 fluid with SRAM 9.0 or Grimeca System 8 disc brakes?

    SRAM 9.0 disc brakes are the same as Grimeca System 8

    The manual for the SRAM brakes says to use DOT 3 or 4 fluid only, but I noticed that someone in the mtbr product review section for the SRAM brakes recommended switching to DOT 5.1. Has anyone tried this? What change in performance resulted? What are the long term effects on the seals? Would you recommend this "upgrade"?

  2. #2
    Formerly RyanC
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbadger
    SRAM 9.0 disc brakes are the same as Grimeca System 8

    The manual for the SRAM brakes says to use DOT 3 or 4 fluid only, but I noticed that someone in the mtbr product review section for the SRAM brakes recommended switching to DOT 5.1. Has anyone tried this? What change in performance resulted? What are the long term effects on the seals? Would you recommend this "upgrade"?
    DOT 5.1 fluid is a glycol-based fluid just like DOT 3 and 4, so its compatible with any brake made for 3 or 4. Don't use DOT 5, however, as it is a synthetic fluid which will eat away your seals. Will you notice any performance improvements? Very unlikely. 5.1 fluid has a higher boiling point, but it is way out of the realm of temperature that most bicycle brakes can produce. DOT 5.1 has a wet boiling point of 365 F. Maybe on a fully-laden downhill bike descending 3000 feet in 5 minutes would be better off with it, but I don't think any average rider would benefit from it. Some tandem manufacturers (like Santana) recommend it for the hydraulic drag brake on the rear wheel. Again, that makes sense, since tandems can reach much higher speeds on steep downhills with the extra momentum they have, and so need a brake that is constantly dragging. All that extra kinetic energy produces that much more heat at the brake caliper. Other people might disagree with me, but IMO any percieved performance enhancement is just a placebo effect.
    -Ryan

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Jaji's Avatar
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    yes Valvoline SynPower DOT4 fluid is the best brake fluid for the price. even on the auto forums people say you are throwing your money away when you buy Motul or ATE dot5 fluid when Valvoline is available and at such a lower cost. im using valvoline in my grimeca system 8 brakes and they hold pressure much better. ie. less water absorption. you could get it at kragen for like 4 bucks.

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