Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Mountain Biking
Reload this Page >

Garbage Tektro Mech Disc Brake Replacement - (POTENTIAL RABBIT HOLE)

Notices
Mountain Biking Mountain biking is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. Check out this forum to discuss the latest tips, tricks, gear and equipment in the world of mountain biking.

Garbage Tektro Mech Disc Brake Replacement - (POTENTIAL RABBIT HOLE)

Old 05-01-20, 09:58 AM
  #1  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Garbage Tektro Mech Disc Brake Replacement - (POTENTIAL RABBIT HOLE)

My OEM brakes are very underwhelming Tektro Aries series mech disc calipers. My biggest complaint is you cannot fine tune the adjustment of the "outer" pad, the only way to adjust is loosening the bolts on the caliper and moving closer to the disc, then adjusting the inside pad. Piss poor design IYAM. Stopping power is not great for my 36lb bike with 29+ tires either but only noticeable on the steepest of descents. Would like to upgrade to more stopping power while I am at it but not AS big of a deal I guess. Rotor size = 203mm front + 180mm rear.

Looking to replace as soon as my pads wear out - biggest factors are
1. price (I have $ but not a pro and I have kids so can't drop $400 on brakes "just cuz")
2. ADJUSTABILITY on BOTH sides (don't care if it's hand or tool, I pack a multi tool)
4. Reliable/Maintenance free (!!) (I don't mind changing out pads or bleeding OCCASIONALLY but constant bleeding is not my deal, I ride EVERY DAY and can tolerate ZERO downtime because I have 1 bike)

So school me here - Do I want to go with something like TRP's Spyke brakes which actuate both sides and look pretty snazzy? For close to that price should I just go with 4 piston hydros (Deore BR MT520s)? What about mech-actuated hydros? Are all hydros adjustable on both sides? Do I really want to deal with the care and feeding of hydros? Should I just go with a known quantity/tried and true product like BB7s?

Riding habits - I commute everyday, barely touch the brakes as the commute is long and flat with few intersection (the MUP I use has some underpasses and overpasses to avoid car traffic). I also ride a singletrack MTB trail network everyday near my house that has some very technical sections and is very steep in spots, lots of rock rolls, step ups, rock race drops, and, well, rocky-rockiness.

Last edited by davei1980; 05-01-20 at 10:25 AM.
davei1980 is offline  
Old 05-01-20, 10:20 AM
  #2  
Leebo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: North of Boston
Posts: 5,686

Bikes: Kona Dawg, Surly 1x1, Karate Monkey, Rockhopper, Crosscheck , Burley Runabout,

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 842 Post(s)
Liked 76 Times in 56 Posts
I use BB7's, got 180 mm rotors front and rear? Deore will be fabo. Good stuff there. Wait for a sale?
Leebo is offline  
Old 05-01-20, 10:25 AM
  #3  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by Leebo View Post
I use BB7's, got 180 mm rotors front and rear? Deore will be fabo. Good stuff there. Wait for a sale?
Thanks! I'm running 203mm rotor up front and 180 in the rear. Will update the post. Is pad adjustment easy on the Deore BR MT520?
davei1980 is offline  
Old 05-01-20, 10:31 AM
  #4  
Canker
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,397
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 209 Post(s)
Liked 59 Times in 31 Posts
Cheap bang for the buck
https://www.jensonusa.com/Shimano-BR-MT201-Disc-Brake
Not much reason to go mechanical when you can get those instead for the same price or cheaper.

Unless you are riding a down hill bike or weigh 300+lbs there isn't much of a reason to go quad piston.
Canker is offline  
Likes For Canker:
Old 05-01-20, 10:54 AM
  #5  
qclabrat
Senior Member
 
qclabrat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 1,361
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 252 Post(s)
Liked 68 Times in 61 Posts
Which bike do you have? I assume the parts are what you get with the pricepoint.
Even with my BB5, its pretty much set and forget, what's you process for aligning the brakes?
Deores are great for what you pay for them. You don't adjust pads, you're going to need to align like the Tektros and adjust pistons with mineral oil during setup.
It's not rocket science but all disc brakes need some experience. Lots of good YT videos to help out there.
qclabrat is offline  
Old 05-01-20, 11:06 AM
  #6  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by Canker View Post
Cheap bang for the buck
https://www.jensonusa.com/Shimano-BR-MT201-Disc-Brake
Not much reason to go mechanical when you can get those instead for the same price or cheaper.

Unless you are riding a down hill bike or weigh 300+lbs there isn't much of a reason to go quad piston.
Thanks this feedback does help! I weigh 173 most days, my bike is about 36 and I carry a backpack weighing up to 21 lbs.

I am no into touring but don't want to rule it out. Even then, I don't see getting up to the 300 lb mark, even fully laden with gear
davei1980 is offline  
Old 05-01-20, 11:14 AM
  #7  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by qclabrat View Post
Which bike do you have?
I ride a Jones Plus LWB. Most Jones bikes are a custom order ordeal. I got a complete bike which is great but not enamored with the brakes or tires. Cost = $2,050 so not the most expensive bike out there but not the cheapest and totally fun.

Originally Posted by qclabrat View Post
what's you process for aligning the brakes?
I have 0 experience with disc brakes; as such, so far it has been the following
Step 1: watch YT
Step 2: loosen bolts and attempt
Step 3: swear a lot
Step 4: take to LBS
My LBS has been great about adjusting for $10 but still the lever feel isn't right.

Originally Posted by qclabrat View Post
You don't adjust pads....
Is this true on all hydro brakes? I am fine with aligning them, it's the process of getting the gaps between the rotor and pads set up which is annoying so I am looking for easier service, if that means going hydro or more adjustable mech models, then so be it!
davei1980 is offline  
Old 05-01-20, 11:46 PM
  #8  
Darth Lefty 
Disco Infiltrator
 
Darth Lefty's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Folsom CA
Posts: 10,911

Bikes: Schwinn Paramount, Salsa Timberjack, Diamondback Expert TG, Burley Samba

Mentioned: 64 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1970 Post(s)
Liked 528 Times in 366 Posts
Hydraulic brakes do adjust automatically. If you have a lightly warped rotor going sing sing sing, it will still do that a bit, and the caliper still needs to be square with the rotor.

I like mine. They did take some breaking in. They are Tektros about the same level as the 200 Shimanos linked above, and use the same pads. No evidence of leaks or air after two years but they could be stronger. I haven’t yet tried any “nice” ones for longer than a test ride.

Bikepacking rigs come with cable brakes for the same reason as touring bikes come with bar cons instead of brifters, and steel frames. They are supposedly easier to deal with malfunction in the field. Trail bikes come hydraulic

Last edited by Darth Lefty; 05-01-20 at 11:51 PM.
Darth Lefty is offline  
Old 05-02-20, 12:24 AM
  #9  
Trevtassie
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Down Under
Posts: 1,609

Bikes: A steel framed 26" off road tourer from a manufacturer who thinks they are cool. Giant Anthem. Trek 720 Multiroad pub bike. 10 kids bikes all under 20". Assorted waifs and unfinished projects.

Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 530 Post(s)
Liked 319 Times in 165 Posts
If you want to stay mechanical in order of doing:
Upgrade pads to good after market
Upgrade cables to compressionless like Jagwire Mountain Pro. This is the best bang for your buck.
Upgrade Calipers to TRP Spyke with good aftermarket pads. They sell Spykes on Aliexpress for next to nothing, but the stock pads are pretty bad.
I'm at this level with my touring bike. It stops real fast, has good feel and didn't cost the earth. I ride like a loon, carry a heavy load and have 2.5" sticky road tires.
Upgrade discs to Icetech
If you regularly travel then cables are good because you can be brutal with them when boxing and unboxing your bike, one less thing to worry about..

If you want to go hydraulic then maybe get Icetech rotors. Whatever hydraulics you go, make sure they can take Icetech style pads with the cooling fins, they work good on my MTB.
I think the lowest grade Shimano that takes Icetech is the https://bike.shimano.com/en-US/produ...0/BR-M615.html maybe replaced by these https://www.universalcycles.com/shop...68&category=30
Trevtassie is offline  
Old 05-02-20, 08:32 AM
  #10  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Hydraulic brakes do adjust automatically. If you have a lightly warped rotor going sing sing sing, it will still do that a bit, and the caliper still needs to be square with the rotor.

I like mine. They did take some breaking in. They are Tektros about the same level as the 200 Shimanos linked above, and use the same pads. No evidence of leaks or air after two years but they could be stronger. I haven’t yet tried any “nice” ones for longer than a test ride.

Bikepacking rigs come with cable brakes for the same reason as touring bikes come with bar cons instead of brifters, and steel frames. They are supposedly easier to deal with malfunction in the field. Trail bikes come hydraulic
This is helpful! I have heard horror stories about air in the lines but my LBS mechanic said he's gone 1 yr+ with no bleeding, that's ok with me.
davei1980 is offline  
Old 05-02-20, 08:34 AM
  #11  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by Trevtassie View Post
If you want to stay mechanical in order of doing:
Upgrade pads to good after market
Upgrade cables to compressionless like Jagwire Mountain Pro. This is the best bang for your buck.
Upgrade Calipers to TRP Spyke with good aftermarket pads. They sell Spykes on Aliexpress for next to nothing, but the stock pads are pretty bad.
I'm at this level with my touring bike. It stops real fast, has good feel and didn't cost the earth. I ride like a loon, carry a heavy load and have 2.5" sticky road tires.
Upgrade discs to Icetech
If you regularly travel then cables are good because you can be brutal with them when boxing and unboxing your bike, one less thing to worry about..

If you want to go hydraulic then maybe get Icetech rotors. Whatever hydraulics you go, make sure they can take Icetech style pads with the cooling fins, they work good on my MTB.
I think the lowest grade Shimano that takes Icetech is the https://bike.shimano.com/en-US/produ...0/BR-M615.html maybe replaced by these https://www.universalcycles.com/shop...68&category=30
Thanks and I am sure you don't look like a loon!
davei1980 is offline  
Old 05-03-20, 08:41 AM
  #12  
Kapusta
Cyclochondriac
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,299
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1412 Post(s)
Liked 569 Times in 359 Posts
BB7s or one of the cheaper hydro options mentioned.

IME it is a wash maintenance and hassle-wise.

BB7s require frequent fine tuning as the pads wear, but it is easy to do, especially with the outboard adjuster.

Hydros are virtually maintenance and hassle free...... until they are not, and they have the potential to be a serious PITA. That potential has become a reality for me on a number of occasions over the years.
Kapusta is offline  
Likes For Kapusta:
Old 05-03-20, 08:47 AM
  #13  
Kapusta
Cyclochondriac
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,299
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1412 Post(s)
Liked 569 Times in 359 Posts
Originally Posted by davei1980 View Post
This is helpful! I have heard horror stories about air in the lines but my LBS mechanic said he's gone 1 yr+ with no bleeding, that's ok with me.
Some brakes go years without a bleed with no issues.

Others requires multiple attempts per year to get stubborn bubbles out of a caliper. Luck of the draw.

People in the first group will tell you hydros are absolutely maintenance free.

People in the latter group will tell a different story.
Kapusta is offline  
Old 05-03-20, 10:03 AM
  #14  
Canker
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,397
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 209 Post(s)
Liked 59 Times in 31 Posts
Well the nice thing about shimano brakes is they are super easy to bleed if you do have issues. Avid/Sram on the other hand are a PITA.
Canker is offline  
Likes For Canker:
Old 05-03-20, 10:23 AM
  #15  
Ross520
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 316
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 172 Post(s)
Liked 169 Times in 97 Posts
Originally Posted by davei1980 View Post
This is helpful! I have heard horror stories about air in the lines but my LBS mechanic said he's gone 1 yr+ with no bleeding, that's ok with me.
Bleeding brakes is simple work, anyone who wrenches on cars will agree. I don’t understand why that process scares people so much.
Ross520 is offline  
Likes For Ross520:
Old 05-03-20, 10:37 AM
  #16  
Darth Lefty 
Disco Infiltrator
 
Darth Lefty's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Folsom CA
Posts: 10,911

Bikes: Schwinn Paramount, Salsa Timberjack, Diamondback Expert TG, Burley Samba

Mentioned: 64 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1970 Post(s)
Liked 528 Times in 366 Posts
People like to imagine how hard it will be to do something different. I've never been happy with any cable cut I've ever made, so whatevs
__________________
Genesis 49:16-17
Darth Lefty is offline  
Likes For Darth Lefty:
Old 05-04-20, 07:25 AM
  #17  
Leebo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: North of Boston
Posts: 5,686

Bikes: Kona Dawg, Surly 1x1, Karate Monkey, Rockhopper, Crosscheck , Burley Runabout,

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 842 Post(s)
Liked 76 Times in 56 Posts
Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
People like to imagine how hard it will be to do something different. I've never been happy with any cable cut I've ever made, so whatevs
Got park tools cable cutters? Works well.
Leebo is offline  
Old 05-04-20, 07:32 AM
  #18  
Leebo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: North of Boston
Posts: 5,686

Bikes: Kona Dawg, Surly 1x1, Karate Monkey, Rockhopper, Crosscheck , Burley Runabout,

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 842 Post(s)
Liked 76 Times in 56 Posts
Originally Posted by Canker View Post
Cheap bang for the buck
https://www.jensonusa.com/Shimano-BR-MT201-Disc-Brake
Not much reason to go mechanical when you can get those instead for the same price or cheaper.

Unless you are riding a down hill bike or weigh 300+lbs there isn't much of a reason to go quad piston.
That's me. Well me +bike+ gear is usually around 300 or so. Most of New England has steep pitches. After lots of research I went with XT 8020 quad pistons. 180 mm rotors front and rear. Amazing stopping power. Set and forget. I was doing around 30 mph down a VT hill, had a logging truck make a big, slow turn in front of me. Not a panic stop but needed to alter course. Great brakes.
Leebo is offline  
Old 05-04-20, 09:03 AM
  #19  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by Ross520 View Post
Bleeding brakes is simple work, anyone who wrenches on cars will agree. I don’t understand why that process scares people so much.
That's a really good point. I've bled brakes on cars dozens, if not hundreds of times (I used to work on a stock car racing pit crew for a team which traveled on a now-defunct NASCAR developmental league)

I just don't wan to be messing with it all the time, once in a while for maintenance = ok.
davei1980 is offline  
Likes For davei1980:
Old 05-04-20, 09:30 AM
  #20  
wgscott
Occam's Rotor
 
wgscott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6,171
Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2366 Post(s)
Liked 1,244 Times in 655 Posts
Originally Posted by davei1980 View Post
Thanks this feedback does help! I weigh 173 most days, my bike is about 36 and I carry a backpack weighing up to 21 lbs.

I am no into touring but don't want to rule it out. Even then, I don't see getting up to the 300 lb mark, even fully laden with gear

My kid (your weight) bought these to replace some SRAM brakes that sell for 5X more than the Jenson sale price, and says they are indistinguishable from his XT brakes in terms of performance, and much improved over the SRAM brakes.
wgscott is offline  
Old 05-04-20, 12:43 PM
  #21  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
My kid (your weight) bought these to replace some SRAM brakes that sell for 5X more than the Jenson sale price, and says they are indistinguishable from his XT brakes in terms of performance, and much improved over the SRAM brakes.
You mean the BR MT 201s?

I am leaning that way... one guy on the Jones bike page I belong to suggested new levers, which brought new life to his brakes, but shoot, for the price of the levers he was recommending I could damn-near by a set of these 2 piston hydros! Also, new levers doesn't solve for the lack of outboard adjustment problem

Side note - my levers do have two anchor points, it shipped with the cable attached to the canti postion. I moved to the V brake position (less mech leverage) and they do feel better and I can no longer bottom them out. Jeff Jones says you can use either position on the levers but I disagree and so does Tektro.
davei1980 is offline  
Likes For davei1980:
Old 05-04-20, 01:50 PM
  #22  
Ross520
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 316
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 172 Post(s)
Liked 169 Times in 97 Posts
Originally Posted by davei1980 View Post
That's a really good point. I've bled brakes on cars dozens, if not hundreds of times (I used to work on a stock car racing pit crew for a team which traveled on a now-defunct NASCAR developmental league)

I just don't wan to be messing with it all the time, once in a while for maintenance = ok.
Yeah, I understand not wanting to fiddle with something all-the-time. But yeah, you know what you're doing, so come bleed-time, it will be an absolute breeze for you.
Ross520 is offline  
Old 05-04-20, 03:11 PM
  #23  
wgscott
Occam's Rotor
 
wgscott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6,171
Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2366 Post(s)
Liked 1,244 Times in 655 Posts
Originally Posted by davei1980 View Post
You mean the BR MT 201s?
Yeah.

Personally, I would get the SLX or XT, if you want to spend more, but these work great. They will accept finned pads, but instead of a bolt to retain the pads, they use a cotter pin.
wgscott is offline  
Old 05-04-20, 03:53 PM
  #24  
davei1980
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
davei1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: E Wa
Posts: 1,130

Bikes: Jones Plus LWB

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 436 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 84 Posts
Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
Yeah.

Personally, I would get the SLX or XT, if you want to spend more, but these work great. They will accept finned pads, but instead of a bolt to retain the pads, they use a cotter pin.
Would love to get the Zee or Saint line of brakes too for that matter just because they look so darn cool!
davei1980 is offline  
Old 05-05-20, 06:12 AM
  #25  
qclabrat
Senior Member
 
qclabrat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 1,361
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 252 Post(s)
Liked 68 Times in 61 Posts
Originally Posted by davei1980 View Post
Would love to get the Zee or Saint line of brakes too for that matter just because they look so darn cool!
I have Saints on a bike and ridden Zees, to me they felt nearly identical. The lever are nicer and finisher grander on the Saints but IMO not worth the up charge.
Also SLX brakes IMO are the best bang for the buck. Haven't tried the 201s, so can't offer a comparison on them.
qclabrat is offline  
Likes For qclabrat:

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.