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  1. #1
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    Why such Avid hate?

    I totally believe you guys with your stories of Avid problems, but I cannot deny my experience. I love my Avid Elixer XO brakes. My LBS set them up perfectly, cut the hose and bled the system. These things have not needed any attention for six months now, incredible stopping power, great modulation, etc. Give the 2012 Avids a try. They really are very light and great performers.

  2. #2
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    I think a lot of it comes from the shear amount of people using avid brakes. More people using them more people there are to complain. Plus a lot of they're cheaper brakes come oem on lower end bikes. I hate hearing about it too cause I have had three sets of juicy sevens in the past and still rock them now with no problems at all. I set them up and bleed them myself and absolutely love them. No turkey warble crap and no other problems to speak of.

  3. #3
    Trail Tire TV on blogger
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    ya,.. just a shear percentages of volume use. They are pretty much the #1 brake on stock bikes... if everyone has a 2-5% failure or issue rate, and you sell 50% more you'll have what seems to be a higher failure rate... it;s just math
    Going to try and bring Trail Tire TV back. go take a look... http://trailtiretv.blogspot.com/

  4. #4
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    ya you guys are right. The sheer volume of people who have them because they come default on bikes probably has a lot to do with it. My friend has some juicy sevens on this bike that he likes. I have used them too and they worked pretty well. My bike came with the juicy fives that I have had for about a year or two and have not had a problem with yet them. I ride that bike about 3-4 times a week. Although I cant compare them with other brake sets in the price range because these are the first hydraulic brakes I have had on a bike.

  5. #5
    Never Forget 9-11
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    More poduct out there plus people are much more likely to tell about bad experiences than good ones. People either hate them or love them. I guess I'm lucky that my XO's work great.
    It's such a fine line between idiocy and genius.

  6. #6
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    complaining

    Avids are so well designed,bleed kits to pad swaps,if ypu muck things up who else do you blame??? Why I'm Joe perfect! Hey if you can't get them right let someone else,a shop perhaps,give it a try.complainers suck.THINK before thinking is illegal.
    Last edited by 02_NRS; 03-22-2012 at 07:11 AM. Reason: spell check for complainers

  7. #7
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    6 months? I've got hayes here that are 12 years old. Still working perfectly. Levers are pretty wiggly.
    Owner of www.shockcraft.co.nz and NZ Manitou Agent.
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  8. #8
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    You hear about the avid noise problems and blame avid. I think you should blame the bike manufacturer.It seems like some bike brands have resonance problems that could be and are stopped by using a different brand of brake. I have code 5's on both my bikes and never a noise problem or bleed issue,on my previous bike I had OEM XTR brakes and they were horrible.Previously on my current bike I had juicy 3's ,i upgraded to code 5;s because I wanted/needed more brakeing power

  9. #9
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    I do believe that others are having problems, but I am very pleased with my elixir 5's. Not one peep and not one bleed needed yet. Knock on wood.
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  10. #10
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    Love my elixir 9. Tried the new xtr and xt, don't really understand what all the hype was about since they weren't all that good.

    I actually laugh at the people who start threads complaining and whining about how their entry level avid hydraulics suck because they don't know how to "fix" the noise or have to pay the lbs to bleed them for him/her.

    Love all the fan boys claiming shimano, hayes, hope, formula, magura, avid is "hands down the best brakes you can buy", they all have their haters and people who have had issues with every brand.

    I think they all can work well and some might work better than others.

  11. #11
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    I hate hearing about it too cause I have had three sets of juicy sevens in the past and still rock them now with no problems at all.
    Most of the hate I hear is directed toward the elixir line. We never had a single problem with any juicy line of brakes in the shop.

    I belive avid created their own problem when they tried to make a brake (the juicy) lighter then it really needed to be. Brakes should be reliable first and light second (or even third) They tried to make a product that there was really no call for. (see new coke vs coke classic)

    When they did, that it made people want the latest and greatest. When everyone found out the latest wasn't all that great they went searching for something better. Or *****ed about it on the intrawebs.

    Don't think I'm talking from my high-horse either. I bit too and bought the first pair of elixir cr's I could find. Had to buy a longer hose for the rear and re-bleed of course. Could not get them bled or keep the pad contact consistent for months. Finally gave up and went back to juicys then moved onto hope brakes.

    For the past two-three years I've seen nothing but an endless line of elixirs going back to avid, some twice and some getting replaced under a rumored recall. Now most of these have been OEM brakes but a couple have been aftermarket sets bought by others.

    Bring back the juicy ultimates I say!
    "I'm the fastest of the slow guys"

  12. #12
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    All of it is interesting, I guess. Everyone has different experiences and theories. I never liked any of the Juicy line at all(not on my own bikes but on test rides and friends bikes) but liked the Hayes stuff at the time better(on my own bike). Now I love my XO's and even my R's and couldnt imagine going back to Hayes. Maybe Im lucky with what I got? Maybe I was lucky with Hayes before?

  13. #13
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    Love my Avid brake. The new HS rotors are quiet. The older rotors are noisy even with weekly brake/rotor maintenance.

    Gone from Juicy (bad, leaking near the reservoir) to Elixir R (Better) now 2012 XO Chrome (Great). XO is by far the best in weight savings, durability, modulation and stopping power.

  14. #14
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    I currently ride with Avid Elixir Rs, and they work just fine. I do ride XC, and have little need for some great stopping power. Also, before i rode Avid Single Digit SLs - so the braking power of the Elixirs blew my mind on my first ride.

    I guess the biggest thing that keeps me happy with the brakes is that i enjoy working on my bike. I don't see bleeding as a chore, it is a chance to do something i enjoy. The next biggest thing - IT'S A FREAKING MOUNTAIN BIKE! It is going to make noise, things are going to rattle, things are going to squeak, things might even howl.

  15. #15
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    [QUOTE=THINK before thinking is illeagle.[/QUOTE]

    Quoted for irony.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterMarv View Post
    I currently ride with Avid Elixir Rs, and they work just fine. I do ride XC, and have little need for some great stopping power. Also, before i rode Avid Single Digit SLs - so the braking power of the Elixirs blew my mind on my first ride.

    I guess the biggest thing that keeps me happy with the brakes is that i enjoy working on my bike. I don't see bleeding as a chore, it is a chance to do something i enjoy. The next biggest thing - IT'S A FREAKING MOUNTAIN BIKE! It is going to make noise, things are going to rattle, things are going to squeak, things might even howl.
    you're not supposed to drink the bong water

  17. #17
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    Why all the hate? Because the lower end models are horrible! No lie, I am on my 3rd set of Elixirs, all 2011, if I'm not mistaken, and they just don't work as they should. The first set, Elixir R's that came on my bike, would draw in air. I had 3 different shops take a shot at them and no one could make them work. The Second set, Elixir 5's (which were spec'd for the bike even though it came with R's) worked fairly well for about a month then started developing an inconsistency problem, until one day, at the bottom of a hill, they didn't stop me and off in to the woods I went. I took them to a LBS to be bled with no improvement, I tried to bleed them myself with no improvement and I finally took them to another LBS who couldn't make them work either. So, I'm on my 3rd set, Elixir 5's, that after just a few rides have started with the same inconsistency as the second set. Needless to say, I am not impressed! and you can forget about talking to Sram directly, sure they will listen to your story over the phone and act interested before telling you they won't work with you directly and that you really just waisted your time calling them (they may as well extend a giant middle finger at you over the phone, they probably have I just couldn't see it). Now, I'm sure I'm going to get responses about how the 10-12 different people who tried to bleed my brakes were all brain dead monkeys scraped up off the floor of the local zoo and forced to work at bike shops, but the sheer numbers would suggest that one of them had their s**t together and could bleed them properly. I'm not an Avid hater either, I have a set of 2010 Elixir CR's on another bike that work great, good power, good modulation and no noise, My wife has a set of R's on her 2011 bike and hers work great too. So, out of the 4 sets of 2011 Elixirs that my house hold has had over the last 8 months 3 have been garbage! End rant. woo!

  18. #18
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    recall?

    all the frustration yet no one has mentioned about the improper machining(silent recall???) of the caliper piston bores causing piston sticking.around 2010 oem brakes on a specialized fsr.call Sram for specifics.
    Last edited by 02_NRS; 03-22-2012 at 07:13 AM. Reason: forgot.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by '02 NRS View Post
    all the frustration yet no one has mentioned about the improper machining(silent recall???) of the caliper piston bores causing piston sticking.
    What year was that?

  20. #20
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    I think the volume of users is an issue. I also I think that the lower level Elixirs are cheaply made to the point where it's noticeable. Also until this year the Elixir brakes were not properly bled in the factory. I have 2011 Elixir 5's I have much better lever feel since I have bled the brakes a few weeks ago than I did when the brakes were new.

    I cracked a piece of the lever housing on installation. I have also had problems with one of the pistons sticking making the brake a 1.5 piston caliper, but this was also due to air in the system. Also now I have the problem of the pad retaining pins hex fittings has sheared on both brakes, so I'll probably not be able to remove the next set of pads without drilling them out.

    Having said all that a properly bled Elixir with good pads can be a very reliable powerful brake with a great modulation and a firm feel for one or two fingered braking. Also if the quality is improved from the factory and there is a lever redesign for one finger braking like Shimano's current range.

    Also bleeding is a pain. You need to sit down with the brakes have a beer and take your time. If you want to finish the job quickly it's likely that you'll get impatient and things will likely go badly. Also changing your pads at the same time as a bleed is a good idea.

  21. #21
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    I have only just begun my journey into using Avid hydro (Juicy 5's) and although I have been mt biking for a while (since 1990), I have always kept things pretty low tech for ease of maintenance and durability. My first bleed took me damn near a whole day as I ran into a lot of problems. Some due to my bleed equipment, some with non-bleed issues, and rest with inexperience. My J5's are used (off an '08 bike) but have held up and are in perfect working order. I'll try to remember to post back after I've used them for a season and see if I feel the same way.

  22. #22
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    my elixir 5s have been great so far i dont know why i want to try something else. i picked up a front xx for a great price so i am going to try it out and decide if i want to send it back or not. i should just stick with what has been working great though
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  23. #23
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    front xx lasted a month before pistons stuck
    rear made it to 7 weeks
    pos brakes, pos company for releasing such expensive yet horrible equiptment
    ymmv obviously

  24. #24
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    Volume of sales has to do with it, but it is not the only explanation, it seems to me.
    I know a mechanic at a local bike shop, who also is a full-time staff writer at a leading online bike magazine, who says that the stock Elixir line of brakes has caused nothing but problems from the first bike that went out the door with them. He mentioned the problem of pistons sticking, and that it had been solved, but also said that the piston design simply lets air in, even with the new bleed kits. He said there is a rotating door on the Elixir brakes- people send them back to SRAM to be replaced by new ones, SRAM replaces them no questions asked, and continues to do so until the person gets a good set or gives up, sells them on ebay and replaces them with something else.
    As someone noted, the Elixir line of brakes is the one everyone complains about. Less frequent are complaints about the Juicy, and virtually never about the BB7.
    undefined Absolutely must have: Black Machine Tech Zeroflex brake levers (the ones with the rotating leverage adjuster)

  25. #25
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    I can't speak about about volume sales but I can tell you that "I've" had 4 sets of Avid hydraulics and they all sucked. Two sets of Ultimates, a set of 7's and a set of 5's. Spongy lever feel and both sets of Ultimates constantly needed to be bled. Switched to Formula brakes and haven't looked back.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterMarv View Post
    . The next biggest thing - IT'S A FREAKING MOUNTAIN BIKE! It is going to make noise, things are going to rattle, things are going to squeak, things might even howl.
    You've apparently never ridden a rigid singlespeed. If my bike is making any noise besides the whirring of the hub, I'm going to try to stop it.

  27. #27
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    I was actually quite happy with how my elixir 5s worked, they stopped well with sintered pads, modulated well. However, only the piston on the hose side of the caliper moved appreciably, eventually the rotor would rub against the caliper, which made noise and bugged, me, tried every way imaginable to get both pads to move, never happened and seems to be quite common with elixirs.

    Got the new XTs, great brakes, but hate those stubby levers, I prefer braking with 2 fingers, no way

  28. #28
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    First off, let me say I have Avid brakes on all (3) of my bikes....XO on (2) bikes and Elixer R's on the 3rd. Never had any major issues to complain about but nobody can get the XO's on my Tallboy "just right" after multiple attempts. That being said, they stop me just fine so I'm not complaining.

    However, I was at the #1 shop in my area that sells only the best stuff and the SRAM reps were in there with their new ultra high end road set. Anyway, the conversation turned to a conversation about thier brakes and the female rep said "yeah, we've almost got past the Avid debacle". They implied that all the warranty replacements have been rather troublesome. On teh plus side, it's nice to see that they care about customer satisfaction and back their products....even when it wasn't their original design.

  29. #29
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    Good job! customer care/

    & when was the last time you could actually speak to a SHIMANO rep on the consumer level??? will stick w/Sram.....no complaints either.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterMarv View Post
    I currently ride with Avid Elixir Rs, and they work just fine. I do ride XC, and have little need for some great stopping power. Also, before i rode Avid Single Digit SLs - so the braking power of the Elixirs blew my mind on my first ride.

    I guess the biggest thing that keeps me happy with the brakes is that i enjoy working on my bike. I don't see bleeding as a chore, it is a chance to do something i enjoy. The next biggest thing - IT'S A FREAKING MOUNTAIN BIKE! It is going to make noise, things are going to rattle, things are going to squeak, things might even howl.
    No-the only sounds your bike should be making is the clicking of the freewheel and the sound of your tires as it kicks loose dirt up. Your derailleur may click in response to your call and your suspension may gush in retaliation to rocks lobbed its way, but that's it. If you have noises coming from your bike, it's time to tune it.



    on a personal note, I have a pair of Elixir 3's. They're in a box. I now run XTR M988 trail brakes, I enjoy them more. It isn't that the Elixir 3 brakes are incapable of functioning, it's just that everyone has their own preference of what they want. Some people don't like the feel of XTR brakes as a whole, from the lever blade to the way they brake. I personally don't enjoy the lever blades that Avid uses. They simply are not ergonomically comfortable for me.
    Last edited by ehigh; 03-24-2012 at 02:11 PM.

  31. #31
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    I have been an avid support for many years and had lots of trouble free braking with 3 different sets of Juicy 7 brakes. One finally died and the replacement parts were almost as much as some of the web deals so I went with a new brake. I frequently recommended Juicy brakes to riding buddies and some of them that took that advice don't speak to me any more because they believe I was trying to make their braking lives a living hell.

    I upgrade to an elixir CR set on one bike and those have been good (the actual braking performance and modulation has been fantastic but the front brake howls more than I would like and I have tried different pads and rotors, etc) . My "upgrade" to Elixir R's on my other bike has been frustrating. I've bleed them, 2 difference LBS have bleed them but no matter what the pads do not make contact until the leaver is almost touching the grip. My own avid experience has been very positive with the Juicy line and only 50/50 with the elixir line. I may try an elixir 9 to see how that performs.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dougal View Post
    6 months? I've got hayes here that are 12 years old. Still working perfectly. Levers are pretty wiggly.
    yeah, i have old hayes on my heckler that haven't needed bleeding in nearly 10 years. work great!

  33. #33
    Uncle
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    Why my friends have switched to Shimanos:
    Great prices - some sweet vintage stuff: http://classifieds.mtbr.com/showprod...product=101010

  34. #34
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    Seems to me that this is more than just a numbers game but either a manufacturing issue or more likely, a QC issue. My OEM Elixir 7 SLs are mushy, noisy, and vibrate. Pads and rotors replaced already. Now trying organic pads..maybe that will help...haven't ridden since change-out by LBS. Clean the darn things every ride. Guy who put the bike together had to bleed the rear 3 times out the box and it is still mushier than the front. Really? I think the end result will be a switch to another brand or a set of Avid replacement brakes under warranty. I will say that I have several friends riding Juicy 3s and they all are just fine. I loved my BB7s. Its not much to ask for a set of brakes that stop without lots of rigamarole.
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

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  35. #35
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    Fair is fair

    I've been bashing on my 2011 Elixirs in this forum for that last several months and thought I should mention that I now, finally, have a set of working 2011 Elixir 5's (the 3rd set). The irony of the hole situation is that I had just started collecting parts and money to swap the brakes out for something else. I decided to give the Elixirs one final bleed and then just nurse them along until I got some new brakes. To my surprise they started feeling better and better and now are actually performing quite well. My fingers are crossed that they continue to work well and I never need to used the Hayes lines I bought.

  36. #36
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    Ok, I have sweet silence now! I replaced my rotors with Alligator Serrations front and rear from Pricepoint, followed the procedure that MotorJeff recommended (using some sort of brake glue to adhere the pads to the spring), and then bedded the pads in. BAM! They are silent. Before, during the bed-in, they would start to vibrate and get noisy..now silence. YES!!!!!! I am excited to ride Thursday and put them to true test. This is on a Stumpy EVO 29 HT with Elixir 7 SLs.
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

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  37. #37
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    alligator rotors/

    also just tried a wavey from pricepoint & pleased w/the results.for $15. beats going used.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by TiGeo View Post
    Ok, I have sweet silence now! I replaced my rotors with Alligator Serrations front and rear from Pricepoint, followed the procedure that MotorJeff recommended (using some sort of brake glue to adhere the pads to the spring), and then bedded the pads in. BAM! They are silent. Before, during the bed-in, they would start to vibrate and get noisy..now silence. YES!!!!!! I am excited to ride Thursday and put them to true test. This is on a Stumpy EVO 29 HT with Elixir 7 SLs.
    congratulations! I had the opposite experience. After going round and round with my 5's they were feeling a bit better, but not good, as a last ditch effort (one of the many "last ditch efforts") I replaced my Alligator rotors with the stock Avid rotors and it helped the lever feel a ton. I honestly think it's just a fluke but it made me chuckle to hear you had a different experience. I hope the improvement lasts for you.

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