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  1. #1
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    Red vs. DA Brakes

    I'm trying to decide whether to use SRAM Red or DA components on my new frame. My main concern is the effective braking provided by Red calipers as compared to DuraAce which I have always used. From what I can tell from my internet searches, DA is the standard by which all other brakes are measured. For those that use SRAM and ride in the mountains, do the brakes work well? Do you feel they have enough stopping power? I'm in the mid 180s# FWIW. Have to used both DA and SRAM and can make the comparison?

    My wife has Red on her bike though at her weight stopping power is less of an issue. They work fine for her.
    FS: Shimano DA 7900 brake calipers, DA 7900 Crankset 50/34 175mm and BB

  2. #2
    Council of the Elders billydonn's Avatar
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    I love the Red brakes. I weigh about 210 and they were very good in the mountains of Montana this summer.... and believe me I used them quite a bit. I have only used Ultegra, not DA though, so I can't really compare. (Can't you put DA pads in SRAM calipers if you want?)

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  3. #3
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    Hmmm, not sure about swapping pads.
    FS: Shimano DA 7900 brake calipers, DA 7900 Crankset 50/34 175mm and BB

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    I switched from DA7800 brakes to Sram Red. I'm 175 pounds...at first I noticed that the Sram brakes required more effort at the lever, 'but once the pads wore in to match the rims, the braking power got better....meaning they required about the same effort at the DA brakes, I've used both brakes in the mountains on 50 mph 12% grades....no problems

  5. #5
    Senior Member NealH's Avatar
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    Although I didn't own my red equipped Tarmac too long, the brakes seemed to work fine. Even if they are not quite as effective as the DA, I really did not notice it. The stopping power was good coming down the mountains. I just had issues about everywhere else in the drive train.

  6. #6
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Brakes just slow you down.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  7. #7
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    "What do I say to complaints that my brakes are no good?
    I tell you this, Anyone can stop. But it takes a genius to go fast"
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Wogster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeWNC View Post
    I'm trying to decide whether to use SRAM Red or DA components on my new frame. My main concern is the effective braking provided by Red calipers as compared to DuraAce which I have always used. From what I can tell from my internet searches, DA is the standard by which all other brakes are measured. For those that use SRAM and ride in the mountains, do the brakes work well? Do you feel they have enough stopping power? I'm in the mid 180s# FWIW. Have to used both DA and SRAM and can make the comparison?

    My wife has Red on her bike though at her weight stopping power is less of an issue. They work fine for her.
    I haven't used DA or Red brakes, but most people who have issues with brakes, it's not the brakes, it's that they are not set up properly. Even single pivot side pull brakes, which haven't been made in over 30 years, the issue was that they simply didn't stay setup properly, rather then they didn't work.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    Set up properly, they'll easily lock up the front wheel or put you over the bars if you squeeze too hard.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wogster View Post
    I haven't used DA or Red brakes, but most people who have issues with brakes, it's not the brakes, it's that they are not set up properly. Even single pivot side pull brakes, which haven't been made in over 30 years, the issue was that they simply didn't stay setup properly, rather then they didn't work.
    Agreed. If there's a problem with any reasonable brakes they're either not set up properly or the pads are bad (especially if old and hardened). But a slight quibble on the timeframe - my Cannondale is only 21 years old and has single-pivot sidepulls (Shimano 600 - now called Ultegra). They stop the bike fine (and could lock the wheels if I wanted to) and haven't needed adjustments other than replacing cables and pads.

  11. #11
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the feedback. I've decided to "cheap" out and move my DI2 over to the new frame. If anyone wants a SWorks SL2 Roubaix frameset let me know.
    FS: Shimano DA 7900 brake calipers, DA 7900 Crankset 50/34 175mm and BB

  12. #12
    Senior Member bruce19's Avatar
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    Size and price?

  13. #13
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    PM me for details, it's a 58cm.
    FS: Shimano DA 7900 brake calipers, DA 7900 Crankset 50/34 175mm and BB

  14. #14
    The guy in the 50+ jersey PAlt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeWNC View Post
    Thanks for all the feedback. I've decided to "cheap" out and move my DI2 over to the new frame. If anyone wants a SWorks SL2 Roubaix frameset let me know.
    Where were you last spring?

  15. #15
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PAlt View Post
    Where were you last spring?
    Don't you need a backup?
    FS: Shimano DA 7900 brake calipers, DA 7900 Crankset 50/34 175mm and BB

  16. #16
    Senior Member bruce19's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeWNC View Post
    PM me for details, it's a 58cm.
    A bit too big for me. Thanks.

  17. #17
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    I really do not think that Dura Ace brakes are any better than Ultegra or 105. They may be a tad lighter but that would be about it. Braking power in bicycles is not a major issue. Under hard braking the rear wheel will lock up and skid. So for the rear wheel, braking power is not an issue. The issue is the coeficient of friction of the rear tire. For the front brake, hard braking will cause the bike to go over the front wheel. Here the power of the brakes is not an issue either. The issue is you going over the handle bars. I would just bet that the Red brakes are more than capable of sending you over the handlebars for the front brake and putting the rear wheel into a skid for the rear brakes. Anything more than that is not needed.

  18. #18
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    PatW, I agree most double pivot brakes will have enough absolute stopping power but it's how that power is applied, how linear or how well modulated that can make a big difference.
    FS: Shimano DA 7900 brake calipers, DA 7900 Crankset 50/34 175mm and BB

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