Upgrading hydraulic brakes - dIY

TrailSeeker

Active Member
Region
USA
Hi everyone!

So my brakes in the back were squealing really bad (I used car brake cleaner and about to go see if that did the trick or not)...

Anyway, it had me thinking of upgrading my disc brakes but I was unsure of several things and wanted to see the communities thoughts.

1. Obviously a lot more expensive if this is available but I heard having 2 piece rotors was a huge advantage. Is this something I could do myself and would be worthwhile to increase performance?

2. If I do upgrade the caliper and whole braking system, are semi-metallic that much better? I know they'll last longer and some have said how quiet the can be for routine braking - but before I do that I wanted to see if the cost to benefit ratio was there.

3) most important is this an easy DIY project I can do at home? I also imagine I have to drain the hydraulics and bleed the valves first. Will I have to put in new cabling through the frame or any other tricky business?

Thanks everyone, sorry for the longer post but I'm new to biking and it's hard to find some of this stuff online. Everyone here is great though! I hope I can return the favor someday 🙂
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
You can definitely do it yourself at home. You may need to buy some tools if you don't have them. A workstand is helpful, but not required.

Two piece rotors will need less truing. They won't improve your braking performance.

Semi-metallic pads will last longer and be noisier. Organic pads are quieter. You do not need to replace the calipers to replace the pads and pads are inexpensive.

You don't need to bleed the brakes to replace pads or rotors. However, if the brakes feel squishy, you may need to bleed them. If you replace the calipers and trim the tubes shorter, you will need to bleed the brakes. Bleeding brakes is not a difficult procedure. There are lots of Youtube videos on how to do it. We would need to know more about which make/model of bike and brakes you have now and what brakes you want to replace them with to answer questions about routing the brake tubing.
 

TrailSeeker

Active Member
Region
USA
Thanks for your help @RunForTheHills! I think you answered everything i needed to know. So metallic might be even noisier it seems.

I think my plan for now is to just use what I have. I was thinking with winter coming up, that maybe I should upgrade but I don't think that's the case anymore, based on your answers.

Thanks for your help!
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
No problem. From your other thread, the Allant +7s has four piston Shimano brakes. Those are good brakes. You won't get much benefit, if any, from replacing them. You could replace the 180mm rotors with 203mm rotors to get a little bit more stopping power. You will have to install an adapter to the calipers to move their position further out. However, that will decrease the modulation of the brakes. If it ain't broke don't fix it.
 

Timpo

Well-Known Member
Hi everyone!

So my brakes in the back were squealing really bad (I used car brake cleaner and about to go see if that did the trick or not)...

Anyway, it had me thinking of upgrading my disc brakes but I was unsure of several things and wanted to see the communities thoughts.

1. Obviously a lot more expensive if this is available but I heard having 2 piece rotors was a huge advantage. Is this something I could do myself and would be worthwhile to increase performance?

2. If I do upgrade the caliper and whole braking system, are semi-metallic that much better? I know they'll last longer and some have said how quiet the can be for routine braking - but before I do that I wanted to see if the cost to benefit ratio was there.

3) most important is this an easy DIY project I can do at home? I also imagine I have to drain the hydraulics and bleed the valves first. Will I have to put in new cabling through the frame or any other tricky business?

Thanks everyone, sorry for the longer post but I'm new to biking and it's hard to find some of this stuff online. Everyone here is great though! I hope I can return the favor someday 🙂
I don't think you will get much benefit by switching to floating disc.
I switched to floating disc and saw no difference.

Also, what bike do you have?
What kind of motor inhibitor connector do you have?
 

TrailSeeker

Active Member
Region
USA
I've got an allant+ 7s, but not sure what connector it uses. I can say it's a bosch performance speed motor. I think it's a 3rd generation. That's all I know though.

I'm not sure why I thought upgrading the brakes was important - I've just been reading a lot of MTB material, although the allant isn't a true hardtail - it's more an adventure/ gravel type. It is a whole lot of fun though!!!
 

Timpo

Well-Known Member
I've got an allant+ 7s, but not sure what connector it uses. I can say it's a bosch performance speed motor. I think it's a 3rd generation. That's all I know though.

I'm not sure why I thought upgrading the brakes was important - I've just been reading a lot of MTB material, although the allant isn't a true hardtail - it's more an adventure/ gravel type. It is a whole lot of fun though!!!
Doesn't Allant+7s already have hydraulic brake?

Maybe I misread your title, I thought you had a mechanical brake and now wanting to upgrade to hydraulic.

Are you only talking about the disc rotor?
 

Timpo

Well-Known Member
What about Galfer 223mm?

Galfer is very well known in motorcycle industry, and their brakes are good.

You will also need a caliper mount.
I don't know what kind of fork you have, but assuming you have a fork with 160mm mount, you will need a 63mm mount to make it 223mm.

Galfer 63mm mount

Galfer 43mm mount
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Galfer makes 246mm, but I think it's a bit overkill.
So 223mm would be good enough.

You could put $8000 Brembo brakes on a Honda Civic. But why? If he isn't doing crazy fast technical downhill mountain biking, stopping 400 lbs of rider and cargo on a steep downhill, or some other unusual use case, why does he need gigantic non-standard rotors?

MTA: Also what will those oversize rotors do to the modulation of the brakes? Will he be able to feather them or will they be touchy and hard to use?
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Ak6J7.jpg
 

Timpo

Well-Known Member
I'm not talking about modulation.

If the range between 0% to 100% is so low, like one on right left side.. that would be hard for any braking.
In addition, if the brake is not adjusted right, for example if you can only use 0% to 50%, like one in the middle, that's also not good.
 

Timpo

Well-Known Member
You could put $8000 Brembo brakes on a Honda Civic. But why? If he isn't doing crazy fast technical downhill mountain biking, stopping 400 lbs of rider and cargo on a steep downhill, or some other unusual use case, why does he need gigantic non-standard rotors?

MTA: Also what will those oversize rotors do to the modulation of the brakes? Will he be able to feather them or will they be touchy and hard to use?
For me, upgrading brake is not about absolute stopping power.

Many people say, "what's the point of upgrading my brake? If I squeeze hard, I can easily lock the front wheel, how much more braking power do I need than that?"

For me, it's about control.
I don't know about you, but for me, upgraded brakes have always given me better control.
 

TrailSeeker

Active Member
Region
USA
Hey guys, thank you both for your advice! They are hydraulics already but 180 rotors. I never thought of the modulation aspect before.

I'm going to have to test the ones I have now and see how they do. Right now I'm doing anything close to downhill single tracks lol. Someday I'd like to branch out and do more technical trails though.

I think for now I'm going to leave them as they are but I'm going to also checkout the ones you mentioned timpo. Thank you both!