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Old 04-05-07, 10:05 AM   #1
TazExprez
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I would like some disc brake upgrade suggestions.

I am new to biking and just bought a 2006 GT Avalanche 3.0 Disc in the XS size a few weeks ago. I have been reading this forum ever since I got the bike and purchased a Garmin Edge 305 (with HR & CAD) based upon the suggestions on this forum. I would like some disc brake upgrade suggestions. I would like to switch out the Tektro disc breaks and get hydraulic ones. I was thinking of getting the Shimano Deore M535 brakes. I will also need to change the shifters, since my bike has the shifters and brake levers integrated into one piece. Since I need to change the shifters, I was also thinking of changing the back cassette to 9speed. Do I have to change the brake rotors? Are there any other things I need to change in order to put in new breaks and shifters? Should I just get 8speed shifters, or are the 9speed ones much better? Thanks for any help.

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Old 04-05-07, 10:16 AM   #2
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bb7's and keep the shifters.

edit: and yes, they are that much better than your current mech's

Last edited by C Law; 04-05-07 at 10:48 AM.
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Old 04-05-07, 10:17 AM   #3
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I would consider an alternative to all that. You just bought the bike...why upgrade the snot out of it?

Try sticking with your current shifter/brake lever setup and install some 185mm Avid BB7 mechanical disc brakes. They are probably the nicest mechanical disc out there. They are very powerful and modulate well.
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Old 04-05-07, 10:21 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by chelboed
I would consider an alternative to all that. You just bought the bike...why upgrade the snot out of it?

Try sticking with your current shifter/brake lever setup and install some 185mm Avid BB7 mechanical disc brakes. They are probably the nicest mechanical disc out there. They are very powerful and modulate well.
Ditto the BB7 recommendation! They are an excellent mechanical brake. If you want to swap brakes, shifters, rotors, etc. then you probably bought the wrong bike to start with. Just swap the calipers and upgrade as things break or wear out.
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Old 04-05-07, 10:21 AM   #5
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I agree. Upgrade to some BB7s and keep your current lever/shifter combo.
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Old 04-05-07, 11:43 AM   #6
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Thanks a lot for all of your help. I'll probably just get the BB7 and then upgrade the rotors later on. I really like upgrading my PC and HT stuff, so I just brought this desire over to this new hobby. I never really liked integrated stuff, so I was really considering upgrading the shifters and break levers.

Will upgrading my 160mm rotors to 185mm ones be much of a hassle? Also, will the upgrade from BB7 brakes and 160mm rotors to hydraulic Deore M535 brakes be very noticeable? Is the difference in stopping power between 160mm rotors and 185mm ones very noticeable?

Last edited by TazExprez; 04-05-07 at 11:52 AM.
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Old 04-05-07, 12:42 PM   #7
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I think BB7 185mm would be pretty comparable if not better than Deore 160's. When you upgrade rotors, you need to get a different mount as well.

My suggestion is just buy a set of BB7's in the 185mm size and be done with it. They come with the proper mount and rotor.


If you buy BB7's and upgrade the rotors later...you're going to kill the deal. You can get the BB7's for around $65-70 each. If you go out and buy a G2 185mm rotor, you will pay around $40 or more. The mount will be at least $7. So you can order the BB7's with 185mm rotors now for $130 total or get the 160mm and upgrade to 185mm and pay $230. For that price, you can get a set of Juicy's.
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Old 04-05-07, 01:16 PM   #8
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I have Avid BB5 mech brakes with 160mm roters and they work great. If you just bought the bike and aren't going down insanely steep hills, then stick with what you've got until you become good enough to warrant an upgrade. Upgrading for the sake of upgrading is just a waste of money if your skills can't make use of it.
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Old 04-05-07, 02:52 PM   #9
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Should I get the 203mm BB7 or the 185mm ones? Will they both fit on my bike?
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Old 04-05-07, 03:47 PM   #10
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my 2 cents: i was in your situation. i went out and got the stock BB5's for $90 complete. they are perfect. they work great, were easy to install, and work 100x better than any v-brake. they have easy adjustments, and make your riding a lot more fun.
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Old 04-05-07, 05:17 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by TazExprez
Should I get the 203mm BB7 or the 185mm ones? Will they both fit on my bike?
Get the 185mm, 203mm seems like overkill for that bike.
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Old 04-05-07, 08:17 PM   #12
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yeah, it's hard to resist the upgrade bug. i think you'd be fine with bb7's and that's it. hydros are nice, but not a necessity, unless you're downhilling or any other discipline that would benefit greatly from it. pricepoint has them on sale for $60 each.

if you don't want to use the integrated shift/brake levers, they also have avid sd7 levers (my favorite)..usually for around $22 a pair. get some 8spd xt shifters and you're set!
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Old 04-06-07, 04:05 PM   #13
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'nuff said http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/126...rake-160mm.htm
I wouldn't switch to 9 speed right now. Wear out the current setup then upgrade if you feel like it later
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Old 04-06-07, 07:24 PM   #14
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Well, well, looky here, welcome back.
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Old 04-06-07, 09:57 PM   #15
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If I get new shifters and brake levers, could I use 9speed shifters with my current 8speed setup? I would like to get the 9speed shifters since I would like to upgrade to 9speed in the future.

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Old 04-07-07, 06:06 AM   #16
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I have a question on bb7 disc upgrades too. I'm currently running cantis.

I have to remove my front wheel for transport and I'm concerned with any complications I might have reinstalling a wheel with disc brakes.. pads falling out, alignment, etc.

Any input?
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Old 04-07-07, 06:11 AM   #17
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^ yes, there are absolutely no issues there at all
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Old 04-07-07, 06:25 AM   #18
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Cool thanks. So then just line it up, slide it in and lock it down. Great!
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