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2nd wheelset...disk advice?

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2nd wheelset...disk advice?

Old 04-01-18, 10:27 AM
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2nd wheelset...disk advice?

I just bought a second set of wheels for our tandem, but still have to buy disks. The original wheels had 6 bolt disks, while the new wheels have the centre lock style disk retention. I see that there are lots of different disks and retainers available...ice tech rotors, floating rotors, etc....and centre lock to 6 bolt mounting adapters. I'm looking to build a second complete set of wheels that I can swap out easily...so I'm not looking to swap parts back and forth on the wheels.
Looking for input on what others would use for rotors and adapters. Any input would be appreciated, thank you.
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Old 04-02-18, 08:58 AM
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Assuming 203mm rotors for this whole discussion...

My favorite rotors for tandem use are floating rotors with symmetric rivets. When these rotors get hot, they stay true. For examples:
Discobrakes floating rotor
DP Brakes 2-piece rotor
CryoRotors - 2 Piece Frozen ? DP Brakes USA
Galfer Floating Wave (haven't tried it yet, but looks promising)
Bicycle | Galfer Performance Bicycle Braking Systems
Hope floating rotors fit this category as well, but their rivets may contact the non-Hope brake calipers

Floating rotors with asymmetric rivets look good on paper. When the rotor gets hot, heat is transferred to the aluminum spider for increased heat transfer (braking power). We've put some miles on Shimano RT86 IceTech rotors. They're great most of the time, but tend to warp badly on steep descents. We're trying a TRP TRP-25 2-piece centerlock rotor now, but haven't taken it to the mountains.

Similarly, Shimano's IceTech looks good on paper. The braking surface is a steel-aluminum-steel sandwich for higher thermal conductivity than plain steel. The risk for tandems is that the aluminum core heats up enough to melt, which dramatically reduces the effectiveness of the brake. I wouldn't recommend it for heavier teams, touring, or steep hills.

Plain 1-piece rotors tend to require frequent truing in my experience. On the other hand, they don't have any risk of melting or deflecting into the brake pads during braking.

I just happened to have 4 different centerlock to 6-bolt adapters on my bench recently. They are pictured below. Left to right: DT Swiss, Shimano, Problem Solvers, Discobrakes.

Unfortunately, none of those centerlock to 6-bolt adapters are compatible with my preferred floating rotors. The only workable option was to use the Discobrakes adapter after machining off some material where it interfered with rotor spider.

So, what would I recommend based on all that?
* Plain 1-piece rotors with DT Swiss, Shimano, or Discobrakes centerlock adapter
* Discobrakes floating rotor with modified (see below) Discobrakes centerlock adapter
* Galfer Floating Wave 6-bolt rotor looks very promising and to be compatible with DT Swiss, Shimano, or Discobrakes centerlock adapter
* Shimano SM-RT64 centerlock rotor looks promising
* TRP-25 centerlock rotor looks promising

These are the same centerlock adapters flipped over. The Discobrakes adapter (far right) has been modified to fit Discobrakes Floating rotors.
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Old 04-02-18, 07:09 PM
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Thank you...great advice...just what I was looking for.
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Old 04-02-18, 11:04 PM
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I've been using the Hope vented floating rotor with TRP Spyre brakes and so far it's been fine.
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Old 04-03-18, 12:13 PM
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We use the Shimano RT86 Ice Tech (203mm) and find them very reliable even on steep descents (10-12%). Our team weight is 300 lbs.

Rather than buy Centerlock adapters, try the IceTech rotors in a suitable size (180 or 200) and use appropriate brakes and technique. I don't recommend mechanical brakes like the Avid BB7 because they have less power and are hard to adjust. The TRP HY/Rd, Shimano R785, or Sram HRD are much more powerful and reliable.

A few teams warp rotors because they drag their brakes (rather than pulse), or use weak brakes like the BB7 that have be engage for much longer.
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Old 04-07-18, 09:44 AM
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It's all about technique. Never had an issue with BB7. Yes, it's steep around here. The real secret is check your speed before it get's out of control.
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Old 04-07-18, 10:52 AM
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Is it possible to shim centerlock rotors to move them slightly so one doesn't have to adjust the brake calipers? I've been looking at adding a center lock wheel, but wasn't sure if it was as easy to do as with the 6 bolt. thanks,
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Old 04-07-18, 11:07 AM
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I had an adapter like the one in the lower right corner, with a pinch bolt,* as supplied by BiFri , for the Schmidt Centerlock dyno-hub.

Avid 160 Disc , BB7 MTB caliper, speed dial levers, now with Kool Stop 'organic' compound pads .. on my Pocket Llama..

Tandem? do fast downhills ?

I just use mine around town all winter, and have to be carefull with front brakes, or the bike will stop out from under me, and I'm still moving..

[the middle row is shims]

* https://www.discobrakes.com/?s=0&t=4&c=55&p=823&tb=001

Though I think they used a, now discontinued, QBP made one..


Last edited by fietsbob; 04-07-18 at 11:17 AM.
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