Mountain Biking - Lifespan & cost of disc brakes?
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I recently tried out some mtbs and the salesman said that disc brake pads may last an entire season, but in dirty/muddy conditions they may not last longer than one day. Really??!! He also said they cost about $25/pair to replace.
True, there are extreme conditions that will eat a set of disc pads in a day; that same set of conditions will likely eat a set a V-pads in a couple hours.
I have seen V-pads go south in a matter of MINUTES!
I just replaced my Avid BB7's this past winter; they had three years on them, in all conditions (road salt finally did in the calipers), and two years on the pads. THEY'RE still useable, and are stored as spares for my new brakes.
I will never ride a bike without disc brakes again.
Oh -- ceramic pads, $17/wheel.
I was riding in the wet one day, and chewed through a set of pads, so yes it's true that they don't last long in really mucky conditions. But for the most part, they do have pretty decent life in 'em.
For example I bought a set of SLX brakes in January, haven't ridden in anything too mucky, and I still have plenty of life left in the standard pads.
09-05-10, 09:40 AM
I ride a Cannondale Rush w/Juicy 7's and I have added larger rotors for more power. I weigh 175 and I am not easy on brakes. I get a season out of a set of brake pads and that includes a couple of 6 hour endurance races. I bought my last pads on ebay, ceramics for about $12/wheel.
Disc brakes are definitely not maintenance problems, and offer superior braking in all conditions. The only problem I have experienced is riding in the rain, the pads swelled up and if not aligned just right drag and make noise.
I now ride with one finger over the brake lever, that's all I need, and I can lock either wheel at will. I'll allways ride discs in the dirt from now on.
09-05-10, 11:49 AM
Depends on the pad compound and type of soil I guess, but I have never even come close to toasting a set of disc pads in one day, even when that day was all DH in peanut butter mud.
I have however burned up a set of v brake pads (and noticeably removed a fair amount of material from the rims) in a morning while riding the same trails and conditions.
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