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Reddit reviews: The best bike brake calipers

We found 69 Reddit comments discussing the best bike brake calipers. We ran sentiment analysis on each of these comments to determine how redditors feel about different products. We found 41 products and ranked them based on the amount of positive reactions they received. Here are the top 20.

Top Reddit comments about Bike Brake Calipers:

u/bcoate · 3 pointsr/cyclocross

I've used both the TRP (Tektro Racing Products) CX9's and cheap Tektro Mini V's.

TRP CX9: http://www.amazon.com/TRP-CX-9-Mini-V-Brake-Set/dp/B004C966DK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1343829859&sr=8-1&keywords=trp+cx9

Tektro Mini-V brakes: http://www.amazon.com/Tektro-926A-L-Pull-Brake-Black/dp/B001F2USVS/ref=sr_1_3?s=sporting-goods&ie=UTF8&qid=1343829905&sr=1-3&keywords=tektro+mini+v

As far as braking performance is concerned, they both worked very well (MUCH MUCH better than cantilever brakes). As you can see there is a massive difference in price between the two brake sets. The CX9's are nicer, but I'll list the advantages I've noticed, and you can decide whether it is worth the price difference for you. Side note: Try to find some used, I got my set for $40 I think?

Advantages of the CX9's:
-Lighter (but not by much, 40 grams for the set I think?)
-Much nicer hardware (titanium hardware, and hex bolts instead of phillips)
-Stays in adjustment longer (don't have to tweak the return spring tension nearly as often)
-Better design for CX bikes (some people run into issues with the Tektros not clearing the frame when releasing the brake to change wheels)
-Cartridge-style brake pads instead of the ones where you replace the entire pad and hardware.

In general, yes, mini-v brakes will improve your braking performance, but there are compromises. Modulation is more limited than with cantis, takes some getting used to. Clearance issues, the pads will be closer to the rim, making it easier for them to get gunked up. More importantly (to me at least) is if your wheel takes a big hit and goes a little out of true, the rim will rub on the brake more easily. This can be an issue when racing, but less so for casual riding, becase you can stop to either true the wheel, or reduce cable tension to move the brake pads out and get you home.

u/Gnascher · 1 pointr/bikewrench

Yeah, I followed the link and dropped the wheels and did a measurement. Looks like 55mm from the center of the mounting stud to the center of the pad. Measurement is rough because I didn't go so far as to drop the calipers ... I had to estimate the center of the mounting stud visually ... I'm sure I'm in the ballpark and a 57mm drop set should do fine.

I think these (and other) long reach calipers will do the trick.

Trying to get good info on which of these are a good choice.

Those Shimanos are just north of $100 for a set.

There's also a Cane Creek set in that price range.

I was also looking at velo-orange grand cru long reach brakeset. It's pricier at $170 for the set, but they look quite nice.

Priced between the shimano and the Velo-orange is TRP's RG957 @ $125 for the set. This may be the real sweet spot, if the ones below are "no upgrade".

The other end of the spectrum gets us Tektro R539 and also Miche Performance at ~$40 for a set?! Maybe the true "bang for your buck" category unless they're no real upgrade from my current no-name set. Nashbar has their own branded version similarly priced.

I haven't seen much in the way of reviews for the Miche or Velo-orange sets. The Shimano and Tektro brakes tend to be reviewed favorably.

EDIT: It looks like Shimano recommends 5600/6600 series levers for the R650's, so I guess they're out of the running. The TRP's are starting to look pretty attractive.

u/natermer · 1 pointr/ebikes

> So what your saying is I should essentially get a 700c wheel and maybe just need a new tube/tire if the ones I have don't fit?

The tires you have won't fit a 700c wheel. They may inflate and look ok, but it will be dangerous as 27 inch tires are 10mm too large. There is a pretty good chance they could pop off while riding the bike. You will want to get ones that specifically match your rim.

The tubes may be ok though. If you only want to swap out one wheel it would be better to use 700c tubes as your spare. If the tube is one size too small stretching it out a little bit won't cause a problem. But if the tube is too big it can bunch up inside the tire and that will cause a flat eventually.

> Any chance you could link me to those brakes?

Shimano makes good ones as well.

https://www.amazon.com/TEKTRO-Bicycle-Calipers-55-73mm-Silver/dp/B01MTSPEDZ

https://www.amazon.com/Shimano-Front-Reach-Caliper-Silver/dp/B005DTQ6UQ

I think the price for the Tektro is per set were as for the Shimano is for one calipers.

The only tricky bit is that they have a little 'arm' that flips up to allow you to remove the wheel without undoing the cable. You want to make sure that is oriented correctly when setting up the brake cables. Read the directions.

You may or may not have to swap out the brake levers as well. Depends on the style of your current brakes.

u/Drefen · 2 pointsr/whichbike

Accessories and consumables

Hand grips, bar tape, seat, seat post, brake pads, racks and even tires are all very personal choices. I am not a serious rider but I have 4 seats and at least 3 set of tires hanging around in my basement.

These are the items that are easy for anyone to customize to their own taste. The average rider will be fine with what comes on a new bike then will start to upgrade as they become more obsessed with the sport.

BikesDirect.com is probably the best example of this. They tend to sell bikes with excellent drive trains, decent frames, and low end everything else because they know their customers. The single best example I can think of is the Windsor Fens which has a full (almost) 105 groupset for only $699 which is not much more than your or I would spend just to buy the the derailleur/shifters/crank etc. The frame is decent but the rest is entry level. This is the type of bike you buy for the platform knowing you will want and need to upgrade everything else as you improve.

You can almost throw brakes into this catagory. Again using the BD Fens as an example which uses the Tektro R530 which are under $60 for the pair on Amazon. Where the Shimano 105 brakes are going to be at least double that amount.

Using amazon because I am lazy

u/NoodleSnekPlissken · 1 pointr/bicycling

> It might not be the fastest or shift the smoothest, but it’s unique, and it’s mine.

And this sort of affinity to a bike is more important that a few specs on paper. That being said, one or two considered upgrades can make it an even nicer ride. I would consider modern-era Shimano dual-pivot brake calipers such as these Shimano r451 calipers which will make stopping a bit more consistent and some modern compound tyres in 25-28mm (if they can fit inside the frame) to give a bit more comfort. Good luck with it. Post up some pics when done.

u/lamiata · 3 pointsr/FixedGearBicycle

First off, congrats on the bike! I have the exact same one in Bronze and it's been great to me so far. Honestly, it's a pretty decent bike out of the box. I'd go about changing things as you need (or want) to.

Personally, the only thing I've really upgraded on my bike is the brakes. There's some fast, long hills on my commute, so having the extra stopping power as really helped me feel safer when I'm descending.

Here's what I changed exactly:

u/AnontheMaus · 2 pointsr/bicycling

yeah, exactly what u/stewmeatsundays has said, watch vids and rewrap the bars.
I personally like the Arundel cork bar tape.
Also, for older braking applications, I would recommend better brake pads like the Kool Stop Conti and you will also need a 4th hand cable puller, like this IceToolz unit.
The alternative would be to fit some long-reach modern dual pivot calipers like these Tektro r559 which come in nutted fitment to suit your frame.


nice looking bike btw, I love a Shogun. Had a Samurai until a few mths ago when it had an argument with some idiot in a Camry...Samurai lost

u/zedmartinez · 2 pointsr/bicycling

They can of course be found cheaper elsewhere, just be careful the nutted thing. http://www.amazon.com/Tektro-R559-Calipers-Silver-55-73mm/dp/B006Z0OVWC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1422652766&sr=8-1&keywords=r559 If you're buying /new/ brakes I can't in good conscience recommend a cheaper product or I would, these are about as good as it gets on a budget for new brakes on old bikes. If you need cheaper, I would try and search eBay for older dual-pivot calipers and see if they have the long reach arms like these, or short reach like moderns ones (will be immediately apparent looking at pictures). But, that's me. Some good old centerpulls do exist, I just can't say I've ever been a fan of adjusting them compared to the dual-pivots.

u/GeminiTitmouse · 1 pointr/bikewrench

These are pretty standard budget aftermarket brakes. The important thing is to measure from the mounting bolt to the plane of the brake pads on your current set in order to find the reach, then find replacements that fit. Looking at Giant Kronos pics, they look like pretty modern short-medium reach brakes.

Another option is to figure out what model of crank/derailleurs you have and find the brakes that were part of that groupset when they were sold new.

u/martix_agent · 1 pointr/bikewrench

I just bought these fora cheap replacement for brakes on a friends bike. For the price, i'm pretty happy with them. They're far batter than anything it came with.
http://www.amazon.com/Origin8-Classic-V-Brake-Caliper-Front/dp/B000OF1NGQ?ie=UTF8&psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00

u/fremenocalypse · 1 pointr/motorcycles

Is there a link for that? You're a saint, bro. I'm not a huge fan of the budget brakes. I know they're adequate but for the type of riding we do, the higher the quality the better :D

EDIT: found them :) http://www.amazon.com/Kawasaki-ZZR-250-Brembo-Caliper-Adapter/dp/B00B10DH7Q

u/US_Hiker · 1 pointr/bikewrench

Okay, so with $200, assuming I was doing the work:

Wrap handlebars - $11.53 (sweet dark red, cause the red on there looks awesome already)
Cheap 700c wheels from co-op - $20? (Talk with them about the gearing to see if the range is the same, or if you want tighter range or whatever, they probably have a few sets there with somewhat different gear ranges on the rear)
Saddle from co-op - $5-10
Tubes/tires - $45 (tires, tubes)
Derailleur cables - $7 (Shimano, here)
Brake cables - $10.39 (Shimano, here)
Brake levers - $22.53 (Tektro RL340)
Brakes - $62 - (Tektro 539 rear, front)
5-speed chain - 7.98 (here)

Then I'd try to get pedals and a cheap but aluminum quill stem, handlebars, and seatpost from the co-op. Depending on where you are, you may be able to get all for $20 or less. Functional new parts suggestions: (not guaranteed to fit. These have all sorts of different diameters over the years/models, so you need to know what you have/need. Handlebars, Seatpost, stem.)

u/zipzapzorp · 2 pointsr/FixedGearBicycle

From the bottom up:

  • Pretty standard Alex flip-flop wheelset
  • 56cm Felt Brougham frame (I think it's an '07, but I can't swear to that since I bought it used).
  • FSA Crank with some super shitty pedals I had laying around.
  • Shimano 105 brake.
  • Bontrager stem
  • chopped riser bars
  • cheap/light Easton seatpost
  • cheap Brooks gel seat

    It's nothing super flashy or expensive, but she rides like a dream and she's built solidly.
u/aggieotis · 1 pointr/bicycling

Honestly, regardless of setup I couldn't get enough stopping power from my canti's and made the switch to mini-V's. I'll never look back. Way better power, and I no longer fret when it's wet or muddy.

These are really cheap and worth a shot. I didn't even have to change brake cables (but did need some extra housing and an inline barrel adjuster).

u/That_Hoopy_Frood · 1 pointr/cycling

I've read that disk brakes put extra force on the fork (which makes sense to me), so I doubt a fork that hasn't been built specifically for disk brakes will be able to withstand that force.

Have you looked into long reach calipers? I'm not sure if that's what you meant by "dropped brakes". You'll need brakes with about 4mm more reach than you have right now.

These brakes seem to be well reviewed for 700c conversions. They are nutted, which is what you'll probably need if the bike is sufficiently vintage (which it probably is, given that it doesn't have 700c wheels).

Edit: looking at this thread, you may have issues with freewheel vs. hub. The last comment is particularly interesting and probably warrants more research for your specific case.

u/ScottishJonJon · 2 pointsr/motorizedbicycles

You may want to look into caliper brakes as well. When I was building mine, the frame and hubs I had didn't have disc brake mounts, meaning I'd either have to weld them on or find really niche adapters (you may be in the same boat?). Most beach cruisers have caliper brake mounting holes though, it's usually just a hole sometimes filled with a bolt in the frame directly above the tire. This is assuming you don't have v-brake mounts which would be even easier.

If you look into caliper brakes, keep in mind that the front and rear brakes aren't the same, since their mounting bolts have to be different lengths.

u/BrakeNotBreak · 1 pointr/FixedGearBicycle

> Also will this be a good chain braker?

I use this to brake my chain.

Mind you I'm not braking it directly, but it accomplishes the goal.

u/theguth · 2 pointsr/bikewrench

Your 'turkey legs' are the older road bike brakes with the 'suicide levers' that curve around so they are reachable from the flat section of your drop bars, yes? in that case, No, you cannot install v-brakes, they require your frame to have canti studs to mount them to. Your frame likely does not have these. You can greatly increase your braking power with a set of dual-pivot caliper brakes (likely long-reach model is necessary), a newer set of levers can help power and comfort greatly as well.

u/Drxgue · 3 pointsr/FixedGearBicycle

Those are long-pull brakes. You don't need long-pulls on a track or road-geometry bike. They're also single-pivot, which is an outdated and totally shitty kind of mechanism. And they're also way too cheap.

Get one of these instead, and a Tektro trigger if you like. It'll cost more but you'll like it more.

u/kduth00 · 1 pointr/ebikes

I wonder if this bike will take brakes like these: https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00BLM3TZO#Ask

u/kimbo305 · 1 pointr/bicycling

> These brakes seem to have really long reach, and I can't fine any with the the 23mm extra I would need.

You only need 19mm to drop from 622 to 584. Which is still a lot, yes.

These brakes have the longest reach:
https://store.somafab.com/dimod750cepu.html
https://www.amazon.com/Tektro-R559-Calipers-Silver-55-73mm/dp/B006Z0OVWC

Keep in mind that going to brakes with longer caliper arms means that you have to squeeze harder at the lever to get the same force on the pads.

u/Turbobaker4 · 3 pointsr/bikewrench

The Tektro Beach Cruiser Caliper should work for you. Any shop in your area should be able to order them, and they are solid brakes.

u/mattpelaggi · 3 pointsr/FixedGearBicycle

You'll definitely need a standard reach (vs. the new standard "short reach"). I made the mistake of not checking and had to run out and grab a new brake when I built my Steamroller. I have a Tektro R539.

u/donkey_hat · 1 pointr/bicycling

My bike had the old style one too and I just drilled out the hole in the back of the fork to accommodate them. I couldn't really do that for the back one so I ended up using the front brake on the back and getting a really long nut to use the back one on the front http://problemsolversbike.com/products/sheldon_fender_nuts. The drilling took about a minute, just get a drill bit that's the same size as the nut (I think I used a 5/8 bit, but don't quote me on that). If that's too much work for you Tektro makes the old style mount ones too http://www.amazon.com/Tektro-R539-Pivot-Brake-Caliper/dp/B007QMIP2K but its $30 each for basically the same thing

u/Deadairshow · 1 pointr/motorizedbicycles

If the front wheel you have has no disc mount holes you could just use the rim brake surface. This rim brake would mount on the hole of the fork.