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Looking for advice on replacing Tektro Novela disc brakes

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Looking for advice on replacing Tektro Novela disc brakes

Old 04-30-17, 03:31 AM
  #1  
krashtest
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Looking for advice on replacing Tektro Novela disc brakes

Hi all,

I'm looking to replace the Tektro Novela disc brakes on my Cannondale Bad Boy. They were stock on my ride and while I found them to be adequate for city riding , they would squeal on occasion and required far too much servicing on my part.

Does anyone have any recommendations on a decent upgrade that requires minimal servicing? I was looking at the Avid BB5/5 or perhaps the 7 series though I'm not sure if the extra dough is worth it.

Thanks in advance,
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Old 04-30-17, 04:29 AM
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dabac
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To get to "minimal" service, I suspect you need to go to hydros.
Shimano Deore are hard to beat WRT value for money.
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Old 04-30-17, 07:46 AM
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Assuming it's flat bar I'd buy whatever Shimano hydro brakes you can find on sale. The British sites usually have the best deals but it's a bad time of year for a deal.
If you want to stick with the mechanical then BB7s are the way to go. You should be able to reuse everything else and just swap the BB7 calipers. New cables and compressionless housing is a good investment.
If you are mountain biking, go for the hydros.
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Old 04-30-17, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by krashtest View Post
Does anyone have any recommendations on a decent upgrade that requires minimal servicing? I was looking at the Avid BB5/5 or perhaps the 7 series though I'm not sure if the extra dough is worth it.
Buy the BB7s oven the 5s if you can. Having an adjustment knob on both sides rather than just on one makes installation and ongoing adjustment super easy. As well, the pads on the 7s are at least twice the surface area.

FWIW, I like Shimano a lot for hydros. My friends and I run -- between us -- Zee, Deore, and XT. Good value for the money. Easy installations. Easy to bleed.
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Old 04-30-17, 11:00 AM
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BB-5s suck, IMHO. I bought one and it was so pitiful I refused to put it on my bike; so I put a used BB-7 on instead. 7s have about twice the pad surface area but in my experience they still require constant tweaking. A step up from that is the Tektro Spyre/Spyke. On those, both pads move, making for much better operation and almost eliminating rotor warping issues, as well as requiring a lot less fussing. Hydraulics are still better -- more powerful, operate more smoothly, and once they're set up they require very little in the way of adjustments. Even a low end hydraulic will be better than a mech.

Last edited by BlazingPedals; 04-30-17 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 04-30-17, 03:38 PM
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I came to the same conclusion about mechanical discs for my use and environment, and decided that TRP HY/RD cable actuated hydraulic brakes are the most expeditious way of enjoying the benefits of hydraulic brakes on my e-cargo bike.
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Old 04-30-17, 03:50 PM
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My Novela calipers were pretty much worn out after about 9,000 miles. I replaced them with Shimano Sora R317 calipers and have been happy the relative lack of maintenance and improved performance. They're also pretty cheap and come excellent stock pads.
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Old 05-02-17, 02:33 AM
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Thanks everyone for your responses. I'm certainly leaning towards hydros now as thinking about all those adjustments gives me fits.
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Old 05-02-17, 06:35 AM
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I haven't had to fiddle at all with my Spyres, although I only have 5-600 miles with them on; so the jury is still out for the long-term. I have 'mixed' systems on a few bikes - disc in front and road caliper in back, which would require different levers on each side if I'd gone with hydros. So mechanicals are the way I went even though hydros would be smoother to operate.
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Old 05-02-17, 06:47 AM
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I'd recommend going with hydros too, though IME squeaking is a fact of life with disk brakes to some extent.

Just a word of warning if you go with BB7s. Don't use the adjuster at the brake lever when compensating for wear. I know with some models fitted to Cannondales you could adjust them this way, but with the BB7s you must adjust them using the knurled wheels down on the caliper or you'll quickly find that the cable is up against the end stop.
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Old 05-02-17, 08:22 AM
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Hit up the usual overseas vendors for some Deore hydros. They work great and require minimal maintenance.
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Old 06-07-17, 06:03 AM
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Just to give an update, I went with hydros and purchased Shimano Deore BR-T615. I only have about a 100 Km on them but I've very satisfied thus far. Consistent and smooth operation, and only a bit of squealing but only when it rained.

Thanks everyone for you input.
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Old 06-07-17, 06:07 PM
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Ive been using BB7s for a decade now. I dont call adjustments/attention less than 1x/month "constant". I am looking at the TRP Spykes as an upgrade, i can get them for just under $100/set.
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Old 06-08-17, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Currmudge View Post
I am looking at the TRP Spykes as an upgrade, i can get them for just under $100/set.
For me personally I don't think going from BB7 to TRP Spyers is an upgrade.

This would be an upgrade:

Originally Posted by kickstart View Post
I came to the same conclusion about mechanical discs for my use and environment, and decided that TRP HY/RD cable actuated hydraulic brakes are the most expeditious way of enjoying the benefits of hydraulic brakes on my e-cargo bike.
If you haven't swapped your brake cables to compressionless, do that first. Both would benefit from this...
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Old 06-08-17, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
BB-5s suck, IMHO. I bought one and it was so pitiful I refused to put it on my bike; so I put a used BB-7 on instead. 7s have about twice the pad surface area but in my experience they still require constant tweaking. A step up from that is the Tektro Spyre/Spyke. On those, both pads move, making for much better operation and almost eliminating rotor warping issues, as well as requiring a lot less fussing. Hydraulics are still better -- more powerful, operate more smoothly, and once they're set up they require very little in the way of adjustments. Even a low end hydraulic will be better than a mech.
You post this of course after I order BB7s to replace my Tektro Auriga hydraulics. I've had to bleed only once but just don't like the idea of fluid. Poured over endless info on mechanical and although not everyone a fan of BB7s seemed the best pick. And red knobs to turn for neanderthal shade tree mechanics like me.
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