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  1. #1
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    Will a 180 rear rotor help me much with my with Elixir 5s?

    Many of my rides have long descents where I brake a lot because I'm incompetent and frightened. My front is 180 and works fine, my rear is 160 and fades. I use the rear brake more than the front; that may be poor technique, but my skills are going to improve slowly at best so in the meanwhile I'd like brakes that work. Would a 180 rear rotor have significantly less fade on long descents? Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Maybe a bit but it won't be a world of difference. Why don't you switch out rotor's and see if it does?

  3. #3
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    Over time you will learn to modulate your brakes. Your front brake should be your primary brake for stopping, while your rear should be used to help control your braking. Switching rotors isn't the best idea, as your pads are bedded to each individual rotor. If you constantly ride your rear brakes on long downhills, the 180 will likely only delay the inevitable brake fade.

  4. #4
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    It won't be huge, but some.

    Work on braking skills too. There are many vids to help you improve.

    Also, learn how to handle your bike in turns. This will allow you to brake less. There are lots of vids on this too.

    Just to check, are you running the HS1 rotors? (look them up on google if you don't know what they look like)
    Lead by my Lefty............... right down the trail, no brakes.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by dharel1705 View Post
    Switching rotors isn't the best idea, as your pads are bedded to each individual rotor. brake fade.
    Just change out pads too, takes exactly 7 minutes.

  6. #6
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    The larger rear rotor will also make it much easier to lock up your rear wheel, and then you're out of control. The best thing for you to do is get off these long steep down hills and practice braking correctly, then work you way back up to what you're scared of now. Riding something that's causing you to have equipment problems because you're scared and don't know how to operate your bike will cause you to die, or worse, be seriously injured.

  7. #7
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    definitely switch it out but you will need an adapter, don't pay big money for the rotor and consider organic/semi metalic pads as they have a softer bite and a little easier to modulate. Discobrakes.com has pads for 6 bucks

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cotharyus View Post
    The larger rear rotor will also make it much easier to lock up your rear wheel, and then you're out of control. The best thing for you to do is get off these long steep down hills and practice braking correctly, then work you way back up to what you're scared of now. Riding something that's causing you to have equipment problems because you're scared and don't know how to operate your bike will cause you to die, or worse, be seriously injured.
    This guy nailed it imo.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by natrat View Post
    consider organic/semi metalic pads as they have a softer bite and a little easier to modulate.
    gona have to disagree, organic pads fade fast and practicaly evaporate on long desents. get some metallic pads, they last longer and are much more resistant to fade.
    Quote Originally Posted by michaelscott View Post
    Buy used, be happy with what you got, ride more.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cotharyus View Post
    The larger rear rotor will also make it much easier to lock up your rear wheel, and then you're out of control. The best thing for you to do is get off these long steep down hills and practice braking correctly, then work you way back up to what you're scared of now. Riding something that's causing you to have equipment problems because you're scared and don't know how to operate your bike will cause you to die, or worse, be seriously injured.
    My bikes have 200mm rotors front and rear, and I find it easier to modulate my brakes, not more difficult I am in better control with larger discs, not more out of control.
    Riding Fat and still just as fast as I never was.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by crashtestdummy View Post
    My bikes have 200mm rotors front and rear, and I find it easier to modulate my brakes, not more difficult I am in better control with larger discs, not more out of control.
    That's cool if you're not terrified and ham-fisting the brake lever having come upon an obstacle that has just released your bowels, as seems to be implied in the OP. If that happens, then larger rotors just make it easier to lock up your wheels at an inopportune moment.

    If you're generally a steely-eyed MF with giant brass bollocks, larger rotors provide more braking power or allow you to get the same stopping power with less lever force, in theory resulting in a longer time before you detect fade, and a longer time before the fade becomes a safety issue, exacerbating the ham-fist/bowel problem. Which, if you're a steely-eyed MF with giant brass bollocks, isn't really a problem.

    I personally have no problem riding my 160mm F/R rotors on my AM bike in pretty much every situation save for 40mph cat-track downhills, in which case I just have to ensure I'm thinking farther ahead to when I want to slow down - or I have to ride a skid for a measurable portion of the length of a football field, which is bad form. That said, I think I'll switch to a 180mm rotor up front when my current pads wear down.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtdawg21892 View Post
    gona have to disagree, organic pads fade fast and practicaly evaporate on long desents. get some metallic pads, they last longer and are much more resistant to fade.
    yea you are probably right, i have a 203 on the front that was nice with the softer pads then i switched to metalic and hated the increased power and more on off feel but the back with the 180 organic does fade a bit

  13. #13
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    How is the rear brake fading?
    Is the lever going to the bar (fluid/air), or is it just losing power (pads)?

  14. #14
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    barco, Yes, it will help, but you may not detect it much. As said before, work on your braking technique. I suggest trying to use the front and rear equally. What you will eventually do is start using the front more, you just won't realize it. Also, fade is affected not only by the rotor, but the pads (as already mentioned) and the brake system itself. Brakes that are designed for extended downhill use will likely result in less fade than brakes designed for XC use.

    So, put that 180 in the rear (and maybe a 200 up front?), and work on your technique. You may find in the future that you do not need those big rotors. For me, a 160/160 is plenty for XC, 180/160 for "all mountain" is plenty. But when I go lift-serve, it is 200 front and back.

    Edit: This is all assuming that, as fsrxc is alluding to, that the system is properly bled and functioning as it is designed. If not properly bled, you could have a "fade" problem too.

  15. #15
    Hooligan
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    I ride 203's as well, 1 finger braking ftw! maybe an organic front/metallic rear combo would be a good way to go. i use my front a lot, but on my bike the back always takes more abuse. i have gone through a set of organics on the rear in 2 hours. i'm talking metal on metal, dh in the rain and mud is brutal on any pad, but some hold up noticably better than others.
    Quote Originally Posted by michaelscott View Post
    Buy used, be happy with what you got, ride more.

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