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  1. #1
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    Reputation: msiddens's Avatar
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    New to Disk Brakes....

    After running XTR V Brakes and levers for years, I've tested an Avid BB7 and am considering converting to Disk on my Santa Cruz Superlight. Considering the system weights, can anyone recommend a system that's reliable, has good braking power, low maint, and reasonable to light in weight? Not asking too much am :-) I'm 160 LBS and consider myself an XC rider. Thanks for all the feedback.
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  2. #2
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    The last year XTR hydro brakes for $79 on Jenson aren't bad. You will still need hubs, levers,and hoses.

    I changed my old hydro's to these, so I bet you can too.

  3. #3
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    Avid BB7's are superb. Extremely low maintaince and so easy to setup. I set them up without any instructions. Suposed to be nearly as powerful as high quality hydro's but without the bleeding and hydraulic hose etc. The pad adjustment feature on the BB7 is also worth getting over the BB5's. You can also set them up as you like them - lots of modulation or lots of power. And you can change it in seconds. I'm in the process of purchasing some Avid speed dial levers which also help customise the feel of the brakes. Even without the speed dial levers i can pull a rolling endo when setup correctly.
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  4. #4
    Prez NMBA
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    I have the BB7's on one bike and the old shimano XT 4 piston on my other plus Ive riden bikes with the juicies. the BB7's are plenty of brake for almost all situations and since you are used to v-brakes, they will be great for you. They do tend to loose some "power" as the cables start to get dirty though, so changing them out occationally helps. The only time i would recommend going to the hydros if you are doing a lot of long ie 5 mile or better downhills out west. then the power of the hydros is worth it. But I do love the simplicity and adjustment of the BB-7's

  5. #5
    ...idios...
    Reputation: SteveUK's Avatar
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    The low maintenance of cable actuated disc is a fallacy. Once a hydraulic brake has been bled (which all should be from the factory) and set in place on the bike, that's it. Nothing more to do until you need fresh pads. No maintenance, and no adjustments because the pistons will account for wear on the pads.
    If you want cable-discs, go ahead, but don't do it on the grounds of low maintenance. Get yourself down to a bike shop, or stop some guys on the trail and have a go of the two systems. You can't decide until you've compared.
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  6. #6
    Meh.
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    If you go mechanical, you can keep your XTR levers. The Avids are probably the best cable actuated discs on the market. However, they are not exactly light. Ti hardware will bring the weight down some.

    Mechanical disc brakes require just as much if not more maintenance than hydraulics. Hydraulics have many advantages over the mechs.

    As noted, you will need disc hubs.

  7. #7
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    Go Hydro

    I have used both the Avid BB7s and Hayes MX-1 mechanicals, the Hayes Mags and XT M765 Hydros.

    In a few words the hydros have been almost maintenance free once setup while the mechanicals always seem to need some adjusting about every third ride- probably because I am sensitive to the lever feel which will change with mechanicals as the pads wear.

    Another observation between the Avid and Hayes mechanicals- the Avids maintained a better lever feel longer than the Hayes, but had a surging on/off/on feel at low speeds that I get on twisting, up and down single track. Both paled in comparison with the either of the hydro systems. Another little note- if you do go with the mechanicals run full length cable housing it will make a noticeable improvement in the brake feel.

    Jenson is currently advertising a complete XT Hydro set (if you do not mind dual control levers) with rotors and wheels for $299- not a bad buy.
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  8. #8
    just like a speeder-bike
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    Quote Originally Posted by msiddens
    After running XTR V Brakes and levers for years, I've tested an Avid BB7 and am considering converting to Disk on my Santa Cruz Superlight. Considering the system weights, can anyone recommend a system that's reliable, has good braking power, low maint, and reasonable to light in weight? Not asking too much am :-) I'm 160 LBS and consider myself an XC rider. Thanks for all the feedback.
    If money is no object, I'd go Shimano XTR or Magura Marta SL (I think the latter is supposed to be lighter, by a little bit).

  9. #9
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    I am converting to disc, after taking the v brakes off you are left with a post sticking out out of the mount. What I am wanting to know is, does that post come out to. They have flat spots on either side were you can put a wrench, and if you look on the back side of the mount on the frame they are threaded.I tried to turn it with a wrench but it didn't move, I didn't want to put to much torque on it and crack the frame.

  10. #10
    POG
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    You should be able to...

    Quote Originally Posted by anteyeradio
    I am converting to disc, after taking the v brakes off you are left with a post sticking out out of the mount. What I am wanting to know is, does that post come out to. They have flat spots on either side were you can put a wrench, and if you look on the back side of the mount on the frame they are threaded.I tried to turn it with a wrench but it didn't move, I didn't want to put to much torque on it and crack the frame.
    remove the brake boss from the frame. Soak it with some penetrating oil. The fork boss is also removeable but on some forks (I think mainly zokes) you aren't supposed to remove it without a installing a replacement bolt since it helps hold the fork brace. Check with your fork manufacturer.

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