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Brake pads for carbon rims

Old 04-28-10, 01:17 AM
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Brake pads for carbon rims

I'm pretty much set on getting a set of deep dishes (in addition to a front training wheel from psimet). As of now, i'm deciding whether to get full carbon or carbon with alloy braking strip. I'm leaning 80% toward the latter, but if someone has a suggestion for good braking pads for carbon, i'd love to hear about it. If you have horror stories of brakepad melting due to braking after long descent, i'd like to hear about that, too.

Thanks

edit: i should mention that the wheels i'm looking at are the spinergy stealth pbo and dura ace c50's. should there be good carbon brakes, i'll be considering psimet's carbons or the reynold assaults.

Last edited by echappist; 04-28-10 at 02:27 AM.
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Old 04-28-10, 01:26 AM
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brake.

sorry, i just had to.
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Old 04-28-10, 01:42 AM
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Rubber brake pads work better than cork, especially in the wet.

I don't think you should race and train on the same wheels for this reason, and because the wear and tear is expensive. The Al or ceramic strip to the rim adds substantial weight. For that reason, I'd stick to full carbon setups.

Why don't you buy an extra set of pads and swap them on before the races and then swap back to rubber pads and training wheels for the week?
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Old 04-28-10, 01:44 AM
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How long do carbon rims last compared to alloy? Bit of a random question, probly no easy answer, sorry to hijack the thread but I thought it might be relevant
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Old 04-28-10, 02:22 AM
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Originally Posted by mattm
brake.

sorry, i just had to.
no worries. i'm known for correcting other people's solecisms and spelling mistakes... guess this is what i get for staying up late to do research... on carbon wheels. even better, some of the spellings were originally correct

Last edited by echappist; 04-28-10 at 02:27 AM.
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Old 04-28-10, 02:24 AM
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Originally Posted by ridethecliche
Rubber brake pads work better than cork, especially in the wet.

I don't think you should race and train on the same wheels for this reason, and because the wear and tear is expensive. The Al or ceramic strip to the rim adds substantial weight. For that reason, I'd stick to full carbon setups.

Why don't you buy an extra set of pads and swap them on before the races and then swap back to rubber pads and training wheels for the week?
rtc, thanks for the suggestion. although i wonder what specific braking pads are recommended? is the new one that zipp developed any good?

Originally Posted by lazerzxr
How long do carbon rims last compared to alloy? Bit of a random question, probly no easy answer, sorry to hijack the thread but I thought it might be relevant
not at all. i think this would be quite relevant to the discussion. though i'll be using these for racing only...
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Old 04-28-10, 02:56 AM
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Swiss Stop yellows work well on my CF and aluminium braking surfaces.

I was pleasantly surprised at how well they worked in in the rain on CF.

(we don't have long descents here)
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Old 04-28-10, 03:27 AM
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Originally Posted by rollin
Swiss Stop yellows work well on my CF and aluminium braking surfaces.

I was pleasantly surprised at how well they worked in in the rain on CF.

(we don't have long descents here)
+1. I used them on both of my bikes and they work very well with several different carbon rims I've had.
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Old 04-28-10, 04:24 AM
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I use yellows and ride full carbon wheels all the time, I've had no issues with the brake pads melting, even riding in the mountains in Colorado.
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Old 04-28-10, 05:26 AM
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Swiss Stop Yellow pads. I know this guy who sells them too.
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Old 04-28-10, 05:54 AM
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Admit tingly, I've only used Swiss Stop RacePro Yellow, but have no complaints so far.

I see you are located in NYC, Sids have them in stock for 50 bucks.
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Old 04-28-10, 06:35 AM
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Originally Posted by leooooo
Admit tingly, I've only used Swiss Stop RacePro Yellow, but have no complaints so far.
I have Reynolds Assaults with SS Yellows and I have complaints. The stopping power is just not very good. Although the pads are set up perfectly, they just don't brake very effectively on the steep downhills (12-20%) that I do in western NJ. Especially when hills end with a stop sign at the bottom. When I ride hills around here, I use the bike with Ksyrium SSC SL's and DA pads. I use the bike with the Assaults for flatter, paceline rides.

I can see where the Assaults would be fine in Colorado where you're using them for speed modulation, but when you are relying on them to actually stop you in multiple, critical situations, not so much. I'm not concerned about the wheels melting, just maintaining control during heavy braking situations.
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Old 04-28-10, 06:56 AM
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The Zipp Carbon Carbon brake pads are quite grippy, almost too much so when you first get them. They are great in the rain.The problem is, they are expensive ($50 for a full set) and wear super fast. I'm talking 1/2 pad gone in under 1,000 miles. You get used to seeing little piles of rubber hanging off the front pads after nearly every ride. Great pad but too darn expensive for who short they last.

I'm going to try SS Yellow.
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Old 04-28-10, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Terex
I have Reynolds Assaults with SS Yellows and I have complaints. The stopping power is just not very good. Although the pads are set up perfectly, they just don't brake very effectively on the steep downhills (12-20%) that I do in western NJ. Especially when hills end with a stop sign at the bottom. When I ride hills around here, I use the bike with Ksyrium SSC SL's and DA pads. I use the bike with the Assaults for flatter, paceline rides.

I can see where the Assaults would be fine in Colorado where you're using them for speed modulation, but when you are relying on them to actually stop you in multiple, critical situations, not so much. I'm not concerned about the wheels melting, just maintaining control during heavy braking situations.
ha, let's talk about trying to stop on those on aluminum rims! the first time i saw one of these (tweed @ 9W), i chickened out and walked down...
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Old 04-28-10, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by leooooo
Admit tingly, I've only used Swiss Stop RacePro Yellow, but have no complaints so far.

I see you are located in NYC, Sids have them in stock for 50 bucks.

There's a better way to go...
Originally Posted by Psimet2001
Swiss Stop Yellow pads. I know this guy who sells them too.
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Old 04-28-10, 08:01 AM
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For carbon rims you need to use the pads recommended by the rim maker. Reynolds for example recommends only SwissStop yellow and KoolStop carbon pads. Using other pads may void your warranty.

My experience with Reynolds rims braking has not been that great. The cheaper Kool stops squealed like a dump truck and started chunking (coming apart) after only a few miles. Totally unuseable. SwissStop yellows work acceptably but start squealling after a couple day's (long) rides. All carbon clinchers overheat easily. I have had a tire come off the rim on a steep and very twisty descent. I won't use the carbon wheels on rides/races with that kind of descending.

OTOH, a friend and Trek shop owner has been using the same set of Bontrager carbon wheels for years. His first set of brake pads (the recommended cork ones) lasted 17k miles.

If you're not racing the all carbon rims are more hassle than they are worth.
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Old 04-28-10, 08:21 AM
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I've been riding my Reynolds DV46C's for almost two years now (using the Reynolds pads.) The braking is not as good as an aluminum rim, but it's definitely good enough. Lots of steep hills on my rides in Tucson, and plenty here in the Denver area, too.
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Old 04-28-10, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by FixdGearHead
There's a better way to go...
I probably would, but I have tried contacting him a few times to no avail.

If I needed pads today I can just stop by Sids and pick 'em up on the spot.
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Old 04-28-10, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by foresthill
I've been riding my Reynolds DV46C's for almost two years now (using the Reynolds pads.) The braking is not as good as an aluminum rim, but it's definitely good enough. Lots of steep hills on my rides in Tucson, and plenty here in the Denver area, too.
How is the braking when wet?
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Old 04-28-10, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Terex
I have Reynolds Assaults with SS Yellows and I have complaints. The stopping power is just not very good. Although the pads are set up perfectly, they just don't brake very effectively on the steep downhills (12-20%) that I do in western NJ. Especially when hills end with a stop sign at the bottom. When I ride hills around here, I use the bike with Ksyrium SSC SL's and DA pads. I use the bike with the Assaults for flatter, paceline rides.
The swiss stop yellow pads work as well as anything is going to work on carbon rims. If they don't work well enough for you, then you shouldn't be running carbon rims.

That being said, I can still lock up my carbon rims with my yellow pads.
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Old 04-29-10, 11:17 AM
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I have Edge 45 all carbon rims with SS yellow pads. I have no problem locking up the wheels in panic stops, not that is the preferred method of stopping. I have not found over heating to be significant problem. LOVE these wheels and great combination with SS yellows
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Old 04-29-10, 11:41 AM
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Thanks for all who replied, the other thing i would like to know about is breaking power in the rain as it does rain quite a bit in nyc, unfortunately.
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Old 04-29-10, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by ericm979
For carbon rims you need to use the pads recommended by the rim maker. Reynolds for example recommends only SwissStop yellow and KoolStop carbon pads. Using other pads may void your warranty.
+1

The SwissStop YellowKing (YK) pads offer some of the best stopping power for carbon braking surfaces in the industry. The problem though is the heat that is generated from the friction of the pads on the braking surface. As simple physics are applied: the more stopping power applied, the more friction resulting in heat being generated. The amount of heat being generated at high speeds (those involved in descents) can be quite high. Each manufacturer uses a different melting point for the resin in the layup of the carbon for the wheels. If the heat created by the pads meets this melting point, the rim can de-laminate and can cause catastrophic failure.

Currently, I do not believe there is anyone in the industry that has been able to figure out a way to effectively dissipate heat while maintaining the weight/stiffness ratios that make carbon wheels desirable in the first place.

To sum this up, use the brake pads recommended by the manufacturer of the wheels you purchased.

Reference: Most of this information comes from a SwissStop and Bontrager representative.
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Old 04-29-10, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by mcjimbosandwich
Thanks for all who replied, the other thing i would like to know about is breaking power in the rain as it does rain quite a bit in nyc, unfortunately.

Originally Posted by mattm
braking.

sorry, i just had to.


I haven't experience any issues with my SwissStop Yellow King Flash pro pads - stopping distance is a bit longer but not bad
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Old 04-29-10, 02:44 PM
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The issue with heat buildup is that carbon acts more like an insulator. The rim won't conduct heat like an alloy rim does so it doesn't act like a heat sink like the alloy rims can. The heat gets "dumped" into the pad. Regular pads melt and braking performance deteriorates/suffers.
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