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  1. #1
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    Squabbling brakes.

    I may have mentioned this in the past so forgive me but...

    On my 2008 F4 I have had squabbling brakes since day one. The local bike shop swapped the first pair of pads (under warranty) with no issues. Month go by and I finally get a chance to go back and tell them the same noise is still happening. They say it's because I must have got something on the rotor/pads like a chemical or solvent, etc. They charged me a reasonable fee and swapped them. Now, years later I take the bike back in for more service (unrelated to the squabbling) but I mentioned it. They again, said something must have got on them so they replaced them for a fee.

    One ride around my neighborhood, on pavement, no water, no dirt, etc. and the squabbling started.

    I thought I had read years ago that this was a known issue. Would new rotors help?

    I also ran across this link.
    How to quiet squealing disk brakes - Denver mountain biking | Examiner.com

    I guess it can't hurt to try, can it?

    BTW they are Juicy three brakes if that matters.
    2008 Cannondale F4
    Shimano XT brakes, ice tech rotors.

  2. #2
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    Avid brakes... Personally, I'd say the best solution is to take them off the bike, throw them away and get better brakes (that means no more Avid/SRAM brakes). Maybe someone has a solution you might prefer but, to me, hydraulic brakes is one thing that company just could never (and still can't) do properly.

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  3. #3
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    My bike did that too (2012 flash carbon 1 with xo brakes). The fix was having 1 pad being organic and the other pad being metallic.

  4. #4
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    I've had Avid, Formula and Shimano brakes. It depends on the pad composition and rotor.
    For example, I was using Shimano rotors on Avid brakes with 3rd party sintered pads and it was working good, no squeal.

    Original Formula brakes with original pads and rotors produced noise....

    I have Shimano XT with finned pads now and they're silent...

    There are a lot of people online saying Avid brakes are bad, but I never had any real issues with them.
    They're more difficult to bleed and change pads than Shimano I believe, but they worked fine for me.

  5. #5
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    Thanks to all for the replies. Probably won't be able to replace the entire brakes. Too much $$ right now. The bike shop did install organic pads BTW.

    Do you think just replacing the rotors might be worthwhile? Can you recommend some specific brands? Is there a good "bang for the buck" rotor? I figure maybe I could just replace the front and see what that does.

    Thanks.
    2008 Cannondale F4
    Shimano XT brakes, ice tech rotors.

  6. #6
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    I have Avid brakes on my Flash and Wife's Scalpel and for me it works great, but YMMV...

    The chance that I OTB or lose traction with those brakes are slim as the modulation is great and in order to lock the wheel I really need to want to do that.
    OTH, The Shimano XTR I tried with a friend bikes are scary... one small squeeze and the wheels just lock.
    Luckily, I hardly have any squealing, mostly I get it after I cross water and the rotors are wet.
    I agree, when it squeals it is annoying, I believe most possible solutions were provided earlier in this thread...

    Another angle to think about:
    Sometimes break squealing is due to flexy wheel or fork... on my Niner One with RDO fork I get much more squealing (Hayes Prime brakes) when breaking in a corner than when my SID fork is installed...
    If your brakes squeals mostly when you are turning or leaning the bike, then most likely it is related to flex issues.
    Flash29C2
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    Supersix Evo 1 Hi Mod D/A

  7. #7
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    I have a 2012 flash carbon 3 and the avid elixers that came with it squealed terribly. After lots of complaing and a few parts (some at my expense and some warranty) avid sent me new improved 2013?? elixir 9s with carbon levers and they have been great. If they are under warranty lean on your shop to get them working avid is aware of the problem and knows how to fix it. If you have no warranty I agree you should trash them and get some XT's. Your just wasting money that could go toward better brakes
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  8. #8
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    I'm looking into this again and wanted to run it by other cannondale owners.

    I made a thread in the brakes subforum and am thinking about replacing front and back brakes and rotors. I like the Shimano XT brakes but am open to others. The main thing I can't understand is if I can put a 180mm rotor on the front? I'm confused about post mount and whatever the other one is called.

    Does anyone know if my F4 can fit a 180 mm rotor on the front? I'll likely stick with 160 mm on the rear.
    Do I need an adapter and if so, which one?

    Marin mentioned up thread he has success with the XT's. Any other comments on them? Is it a significant upgrade to what I have now?

    How difficult is the install on this? It seems pretty straightforward except if I'd need to shorten the cables, etc. Bleeding hydraulic brakes doesn't sound fun.
    2008 Cannondale F4
    Shimano XT brakes, ice tech rotors.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by de8212 View Post
    I'm looking into this again and wanted to run it by other cannondale owners.

    I made a thread in the brakes subforum and am thinking about replacing front and back brakes and rotors. I like the Shimano XT brakes but am open to others. The main thing I can't understand is if I can put a 180mm rotor on the front? I'm confused about post mount and whatever the other one is called.

    Does anyone know if my F4 can fit a 180 mm rotor on the front? I'll likely stick with 160 mm on the rear.
    Do I need an adapter and if so, which one?

    Marin mentioned up thread he has success with the XT's. Any other comments on them? Is it a significant upgrade to what I have now?

    How difficult is the install on this? It seems pretty straightforward except if I'd need to shorten the cables, etc. Bleeding hydraulic brakes doesn't sound fun.
    I don't own a cannondale, but no reason why you can't run a 180 up front. yes, you will need the correct adapter and it depends on the brake set you choose to go with.

    if your concerned about installing the brakes then just have your local shop do the work for you. It's not hard, but there are tools, etc. that you need to do the job correctly. Bleeding brakes is not a big deal but like installation does have it's learning curve. That decision is really just how mechanically inclined you are, how much time you have, etc.
    2008 Trek Fuel EX 8

  10. #10
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    Thanks. The brakes I was looking at were the Shimano XT M785's.

    I've looked at a youtube video on installing the brakes and it didn't seem very difficult but you never know. And it didn't have any special adapter so that part concerns me.
    What kind of special tools (besides bleeding the brakes) would be needed?

    I'll probably go to the local shop and ask them but I highly doubt they would like installing an item I didn't purchase from them. I could certainly be wrong though.
    2008 Cannondale F4
    Shimano XT brakes, ice tech rotors.

  11. #11
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    My wife demoed a Niner Jet9 RDO with XT brakes last Saturday = Brakes squealed like a slaughtered Pig...
    The bike was great otherwise...
    I demoed the Rip9 RDO with the new Sram Guide brakes - worked flawlessly
    Flash29C2
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    Niner One9 SingleSpeed RDO fork
    Supersix Evo 1 Hi Mod D/A

  12. #12
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    Brake squeal seems rather random and arbitrary... I've run Elixer 3's and Shimano XT/SLX (both on various sizes of avid rotors) and never had major issues with squealing. They'll make some noise if they get wet but overall noise wasn't a problem (at least not compared to the terrible lever feel and reliability of the avids...). On the other hand, I've ridden with friends who run Avid brakes and they squeal terribly.

  13. #13
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    XTs are running great for me so far, but I'll have to replace pads.
    AFAIK, stock pads are IceTech organic, I'll probably get regular organic since they're much easier on rotors than metallic.

    Anyhow, bleeding is really easy with open system Shimano.
    First prepare about 20ml of mineral oil in a syringe with flexible tube and another syringe without the plunger to hold the old oil.
    Rotate the lever to horizontal position, open the reservoir port, place the syringe (the one without the plunger) in it to contain the excess oil.
    Then, remove the caliper, remove the pads (so you don't accidentally spill oil over pads or rotor), use something to block the pistons, remove the caliper cap, plug the syringe with tube in it, unscrew the oil port and gently inject the syringe.

    After that just tighten the oil port and put all the back as it was

  14. #14
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    Get some SwissStop Brake Silencer for your pads. The stuff really works, we use it at the shop all the time.

  15. #15
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    I've had back and forth results. Found how they are bedded seems to matter alot as too how much noise they make. Squealling to some level is a constant but the turkey warble always seems to be an "I cleaned my rotors and out of laziness I didn't take the time to bed properly" issue. Reclean rotors and bed the right way and minimal noise again.
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  16. #16
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    On my Juicy's I used semi metallic Serfas pads with Shimano rotors....never had an issue in nearly a decade with them...Just switched to new XO brakes because I needed more braking power and they came with organic pads already installed, and no issues with them so far either....I'm located in the South where we have a really high humidity and my brakes don't squeal a bit...don't know what the problem seems to be with everyone else's...
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