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  1. #1
    Senior Member PoorBehavior's Avatar
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    More Brake Power needed.

    Hey all, got an 05 base Rockhopper with the combined brake/shifter. I am over 215lbs and as I am starting to ride faster and harder I am wishing for some stronger brakes. Will an upgrade in just the v-brakes themselves to an avid single digit 7 or sram 9.0 give a lot of benefit if I use the combined shifter/brake levers or will I need to get a new set of shifters and brake handles to get real benefit? I do not have disc ready wheels. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Throw the stick!!!! LowCel's Avatar
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    You won't see a whole lot of a difference by just switching v-brakes.

    Since you have combined shifters and levers you could always go to avid cable pull disc brakes. That will give you improved braking and save you some money since you can keep your current levers/shifters. The wheelset will still have to be upgraded though.
    I may be fat but I'm slow enough to make up for it.

  3. #3
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    I just installed the Avid BB7 cable pull disc brakes on my bike. I haven't had a chance to ride on the trails yet, but just riding in the neighborhood, the brakes feel strong. A lot stronger than the CODA Expert disc brakes that were on there.
    Mark

  4. #4
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    Agreed, there are plenty people happy with their Avid BB7's including myself. Especially if you dont mind the weight penalty.
    Marin Rift Zone

    Marin Hawk Hill
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    Truvativ carbon riser bar

  5. #5
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PoorBehavior
    Hey all, got an 05 base Rockhopper with the combined brake/shifter. I am over 215lbs and as I am starting to ride faster and harder I am wishing for some stronger brakes. Will an upgrade in just the v-brakes themselves to an avid single digit 7 or sram 9.0 give a lot of benefit if I use the combined shifter/brake levers or will I need to get a new set of shifters and brake handles to get real benefit? I do not have disc ready wheels. Thanks.
    Check out the cables for free movement and lubricate or change as required. The brake blocks will have got a glaze on them so a bit of sandpaper or a file across them to clean them up works a treat. Before you do that though, look at the blocks to see if all the block is acting on the rim and adjust the brakes if not. Finally and not to be recommended for constant use- Take the glaze off the rims with sandpaper again, or as we have in the UK Wet and Dry paper using just water.
    ALL "V" brakes work well, even the cheap ones if that is what is fitted to your bike. Badly set up brakes or maintained ones don't. Then there is the option of fitting an aftermarket block to your brakes, but that will now give you 500 choices as everyone has their own specific one that works and all others are crap. I just use the standard Shimano block and never have any problems.

  6. #6
    Senior Member PoorBehavior's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice. I try to keep them tuned up as best I can. I really do not want to fork out $150-300 dollars for disc ready wheels and a disc system, might as well save it up for another bike next year. I am just starting to learn what I like and don't like anyway so no reason to rush it. Besides, thats why I wear a helmet.

  7. #7
    ODB to those that know me outdoorboy's Avatar
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    Are there larger pads available for v-brakes? Would that help?


    Brakes are a waste, they only slow you down.

    Sorry, I couldn't help myself.
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  8. #8
    Ankles Suck! norcodirtjumper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PoorBehavior
    Hey all, got an 05 base Rockhopper with the combined brake/shifter. I am over 215lbs and as I am starting to ride faster and harder I am wishing for some stronger brakes. Will an upgrade in just the v-brakes themselves to an avid single digit 7 or sram 9.0 give a lot of benefit if I use the combined shifter/brake levers or will I need to get a new set of shifters and brake handles to get real benefit? I do not have disc ready wheels. Thanks.
    My bike came with the combined shifters and levers also, with Hayes MX1 Mechanical disc brakes and my brakes work great with those levers.

  9. #9
    UareFASTjustNOTfastENOUGH MasterSezFaster's Avatar
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    You could get a set of these H33 Then you only need to get new shifters. They offer a lot more power then V's. I ran an older version for 8 years racing DH and I was 250lbs at the time and they had no problem slowing me down or stopping.

    Other then those you will need to get discs to see a major differance in power.



  10. #10
    ODB to those that know me outdoorboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MasterSezFaster
    You could get a set of these H33 Then you only need to get new shifters. They offer a lot more power then V's. I ran an older version for 8 years racing DH and I was 250lbs at the time and they had no problem slowing me down or stopping.

    Other then those you will need to get discs to see a major differance in power.


    Those are cool! Anybody know how much? Just curious.
    Visit ArkansasOutside.com. Lets go play outside in the Natural State!

  11. #11
    Senior Member CranxOC's Avatar
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    Go mechanical disc.
    "If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts." - Albert Einstein

  12. #12
    Senior Member PoorBehavior's Avatar
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    Yeah but with mechanical disc I need a new wheel and at this point I figure every dollar I don't spend is a dollar better spent down the line. Brakes are uber important obviously, except for outdoorboy. If the only way to see a real improvement is to go disk then I need a wheel, or set, starts to add up quick. I am not cheap, I just hate to throw money at a problem if there is a better way.

    Those hydrolic v brakes are pretty cool though, thanks for the link.

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    I'm in the same position as you...I want better braking but I don't want to spend $300-$400 (CDN) for the disc / wheel upgrade. Right now I have Avid Single Digit 3 that came with the bike.

    The reviews of Avid Single Digit 7 on mtbr.com are universally glowing. A lot of people write that you get almost disc like performance, except in muddy or wet conditions. For $25 each on pricepoint.com they're a lot cheaper than discs and I'm sure will be much better than what I currently have.

  14. #14
    Senior Member PoorBehavior's Avatar
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    I was lookng at the same reviews and was wondering the same thing about the avid 7's. I was almost hoping that the tree I just slammed into didn't just spin my brake shifter but broke it. Talk about taking the wrong line, I hit the brakes for an instant then just made sure I got both hands on the tree. Oh well, I might pick up something off of ebay, anyone have any advice on that?

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    though they are spendy the paul component v brakes have about twice the power of avid SD7's and are far nicer. though they cost 230.00 a very good upgrade one that helped me mout.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Josh M
    I'm in the same position as you...I want better braking but I don't want to spend $300-$400 (CDN) for the disc / wheel upgrade. Right now I have Avid Single Digit 3 that came with the bike.

    The reviews of Avid Single Digit 7 on mtbr.com are universally glowing. A lot of people write that you get almost disc like performance, except in muddy or wet conditions. For $25 each on pricepoint.com they're a lot cheaper than discs and I'm sure will be much better than what I currently have.
    then there are people like me who thought they sucked as they never stayed centered. myself I only saw a small improvement over the cheap shimano's that came on my bike. now the pauls v brakes were twice the power of the ASD7 and quite a bit mroe in cost though.

  17. #17
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    buy a *****in wheelset and break set that you can transfer to a new bike down the road.

  18. #18
    Senior Member PoorBehavior's Avatar
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    Knowing what the right thing to do is not the hard part, doing it is. I know I should just fork out $300 to get a decent set of wheels and brakes, but I have a hard time justifying that cost. I have found that I can usually get 70-90% of the performance with 10-30% percent of the cost if I gnore the hype and I am willing to put in a little leg work. JMHO. Besides, my ears would stop bleeding before my wife stopped *****ing about it.
    Beside, thats what the point of this thread was, a good improvement without buying a new wheelset and matching brakes.

  19. #19
    UareFASTjustNOTfastENOUGH MasterSezFaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by outdoorboy
    Those are cool! Anybody know how much? Just curious.
    The Magura H33's will run ya about 220$ for the set.


  20. #20
    Senior Member PoorBehavior's Avatar
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    Well, I think I am going to look into building my own wheels. If I learn something while getting a better setup for disc brakes then I can accept the cost. That way I will not only have disc ready wheels but I will know how to do more of my own work.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by PoorBehavior
    Hey all, got an 05 base Rockhopper with the combined brake/shifter. I am over 215lbs and as I am starting to ride faster and harder I am wishing for some stronger brakes. Will an upgrade in just the v-brakes themselves to an avid single digit 7 or sram 9.0 give a lot of benefit if I use the combined shifter/brake levers or will I need to get a new set of shifters and brake handles to get real benefit? I do not have disc ready wheels. Thanks.
    Dont bother changing V brake for V brake, get the convesion kit so you can put disc brakes on, it costs approx 100 quid for kit

  22. #22
    Senior Member matheprat's Avatar
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    Just set your brakes up properly, and spend a tenner on some new pads and cables. No offence, but you don't need discs. Just set up the brakes you have now properly.

  23. #23
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by outdoorboy
    Are there larger pads available for v-brakes? Would that help?.
    Most pads i've found on V-s were stubby and low quality.

    http://www.jagwireusa.com/switchback.html Best made.

  24. #24
    2-Cyl, 1/2 HP @ 90 RPM slvoid's Avatar
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    Who's the guy who's making a bike with 4 sets of brakes? 2 disc and 2 v-brakes?
    What he needs is an endo button. One press and it locks up the front wheel.

  25. #25
    Why Be Normal? Gorsar's Avatar
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    All v-brakes are NOT the same, and yes, you would notice a difference getting a quality set of v-brakes. If you are riding downhill for EXTENDED distances or ride in primarily sloppy conditions then yes, disc is the way to go. However, a decent set of v-brakes setup properly can offer outstanding stopping power.

    Avid Single Digit 7 V-Brakes

    I have nothing at ALL against disc brakes but personally feel that 80% of the riders that have them don't need them. More than you'd think have them for "coolness" value rather than braking power. There's nothing wrong with buying them for that reason but if money is tight or you're trying to spend as little as possible it simply doesn't make sense to drop $140 on brakes when your riding conditions doesn't merit it.

    Just my $.02.

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