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Future of Road Hydraulic Discs

timmyotooltimmyotool Posts: 172
edited August 2016 in Road general
Hi,

I would be interested to hear any opinions on the development/future of hydraulic road disc brakes, and how much they will improve over the next few years?

I'm looking at new bikes with hydraulic discs but I'm not sure if this is the time to do so, or wait until there are refinements in the tech.

Looking at bikes with Shimano, the BR R505 are a pretty hideous contraption and not particularly ergonomic. I much prefer the model up BR R685, but these are still quite cumbersome.
I notice Shimano are yet to assign a braking system to a name (ultegra/105 etc). Does this mean that they are not quite up to spec to do so?

I'd be interested in peoples thoughts on this, or any insider knowledge...

Posts

  • bendertherobotbendertherobot Posts: 11,684
    Future? They're pretty terrific now. The RS685 are as good in terms of feel and operation as Shimano SLX.

    The future is simply about price.
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
    https://twitter.com/roubaixcc
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  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,441
    So basically you want to know if the levers will become prettier? I think so... they probably will
  • kajjalkajjal Posts: 3,380
    I have r785 calipers with r685 levers / shifters. They work very well and are the same in use as XT disc brakes. Plenty of power, consistent with a lot of feel.
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 7,421
    Yeah, those r685 levers are great pieces of kit. I actually prefer riding on the hoods than the ones on my Di2 rim brake bike.

    Tech seems to have settled down as far as standards are concerned. There seems to be consensus on post mount brakes for the high end bikes, and some form of through axle. So if you get a bike with a frame compatible with these standards, you will be okay for some time to come. Your frame should last a couple of groupsets so I don't see the point in waiting.

    Main issue is Di2 or not Di2. Although soon there will be a some frames out there for eTap only, most frames will retain Di2 drillings.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,441
    There seems to be consensus on post mount brakes for the high end bikes, and some form of through axle. .

    Not from me, I think they are both downgrades over IS mounts and QRs
  • bendertherobotbendertherobot Posts: 11,684
    I actually prefer the Shimano over the SRAM effort. Not in terms of performance or the aesthetics of the hood per se. Just the pivot. Small thing but i don't like where it pivots. I know that's weird.
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
    https://twitter.com/roubaixcc
    Facebook? No. Just say no.
  • stueysstueys Posts: 1,332
    Think that the technology will refine but the key alignments are getting there now as the previous ops have said. Shim flat mount seems to be the emerging standard and we slowly seem to be coming to a consensus on through axle. Both are good things, no reason not to dive into discs.
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 7,421
    There seems to be consensus on post mount brakes for the high end bikes, and some form of through axle. .

    Not from me, I think they are both downgrades over IS mounts and QRs
    I wouldn't know, tbh. My disc bike has IS and QRs. Never had an issue with either. I suspect that the push to direct mount was for weight. I suspect the push for through axles was sales. We are told they are stiffer and prevent brake rub. But I've never had a wheel slip using QRs so its fixing a problem that doesn't exist, I agree.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,441
    There seems to be consensus on post mount brakes for the high end bikes, and some form of through axle. .

    Not from me, I think they are both downgrades over IS mounts and QRs
    I wouldn't know, tbh. My disc bike has IS and QRs. Never had an issue with either. I suspect that the push to direct mount was for weight. I suspect the push for through axles was sales. We are told they are stiffer and prevent brake rub. But I've never had a wheel slip using QRs so its fixing a problem that doesn't exist, I agree.

    I have two frames/forks with direct mount... none of them is perfectly aligned/faced... never had a problem with QRs and modern dropouts either
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,337
    Yup - as I've said before, I'm a fan of technology in cycling but Thru Axles are a nonsense. I'd ALWAYS choose QR over TA. You will also always be able to convert TA wheel to a QR frame but not the other way. Grab a QR disc frame whilst you can before they fcuk it up.

    I have both types and there's absolutely no advantage to TA for riding but they're a PITA for wheel removal and replacement.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • kajjalkajjal Posts: 3,380
    Yup - as I've said before, I'm a fan of technology in cycling but Thru Axles are a nonsense. I'd ALWAYS choose QR over TA. You will also always be able to convert TA wheel to a QR frame but not the other way. Grab a QR disc frame whilst you can before they fcuk it up.

    I have both types and there's absolutely no advantage to TA for riding but they're a PITA for wheel removal and replacement.

    My newer bike has TA and i find it easier to change wheels. My xc mountain bike is QR which works fine.
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,337
    Kajjal wrote:
    My newer bike has TA and i find it easier to change wheels

    In what way? With QR the wheel just drops in - the rear just needs the lever flipped and the front a couple of rotations to tighten. It couldn't be much easier.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • kajjalkajjal Posts: 3,380
    Kajjal wrote:
    My newer bike has TA and i find it easier to change wheels

    In what way? With QR the wheel just drops in - the rear just needs the lever flipped and the front a couple of rotations to tighten. It couldn't be much easier.

    The TA just spins out by hand and the wheel always goes back in exactly the same. With QR sometimes I have to reseat the wheel if it does not go in quite right.
  • homers_doublehomers_double Posts: 6,932
    TA makes much more sense on a disc frame as the wheel sits in precicesly the same place each time.

    You can argue the time difference (which is minimal anyway) is taken out by not having to flip the little toggle on the calipers to open them up a bit.
    Advocate of disc brakes.
  • mr_evilmr_evil Posts: 234
    Kajjal wrote:
    My newer bike has TA and i find it easier to change wheels

    In what way? With QR the wheel just drops in - the rear just needs the lever flipped and the front a couple of rotations to tighten. It couldn't be much easier.
    I find TA a bit quicker on the front because there are no lawyer lips to adjust for, and a little easier at the rear because TA hub end caps don't stick out as far and so are less likely to catch on the chain.
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,337
    And what do you guys do with the TA when the wheel is off the bike (obviously for more than a few mins) - screw it back into the frame? I find them entirely unnecessary and a faff. I also had a rear TA loosen itself off - something that has never happened with QR.

    And my TA bike will neither go on my turbo nor my workstand. And I'd imagine it wouldn't go on some bike racks either. All for a "benefit" we don't need. Very silly.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • frisbeefrisbee Posts: 691
    The new Dura Ace Hydraulic levers are supposed to be exactly the same size as the cable levers.

    I intentionally went for a bike with a front thru axle. Not so bothered about having a thru axle at the back.
  • mamba80mamba80 Posts: 5,032
    And what do you guys do with the TA when the wheel is off the bike (obviously for more than a few mins) - screw it back into the frame? I find them entirely unnecessary and a faff. I also had a rear TA loosen itself off - something that has never happened with QR.

    And my TA bike will neither go on my turbo nor my workstand. And I'd imagine it wouldn't go on some bike racks either. All for a "benefit" we don't need. Very silly.

    Dont often agree with you MRS but your on the money, a solution to a problem that doesnt exist, i ve TA and QR on 2 HT MTB's and the TA is a faff and offers no performance advantage, maybe if your Gee Atherton it might though!

    i guess it ll be decided by the marketing people and what is available, wheel wise.
  • bendertherobotbendertherobot Posts: 11,684
    I'm a little bit torn. IF TA can guarantee easy and flawless installation every time then great.

    But, I now have 3 sets of wheels being swapped between 2 bikes. I've matched the rotors and the cassettes. Both bikes have different braking systems. In practice no combination of wheel/bike/brake is anything other than dead on.
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
    https://twitter.com/roubaixcc
    Facebook? No. Just say no.
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,337
    Been using QR for discs for 6 years on road bikes - never had an alignment issue of any sort - after all, any similar issue would be a problem for rim brakes too. Drop the wheel in and tighten - job done.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • DeVlaeminckDeVlaeminck Posts: 7,300
    ? I find them entirely unnecessary and a faff. .

    Much like disc brakes on road bikes then.
    [Castle Donington Ladies FC - going up in '22]
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,337
    ? I find them entirely unnecessary and a faff. .

    Much like disc brakes on road bikes then.

    Except absolutely nothing like it - otherwise, well done, spot on
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • vrsmattvrsmatt Posts: 156
    Easy to sort alignment on qr disc wheels to make sure the wheel sits right on installation....put the wheel in, leave qr loose, apply the brake, tighten qr. Voila

    Having used discs of a long time on mtbs I cant really see the benefit of TA's on road bikes unless its to add structural strength where weight/stiffness gets taken out of the frame/fork? Either way we are at the mercy of the manufacturers
    Giant TCR Composite 1, Giant Defy Advanced 2, Boardman Comp, Santa Cruz Heckler, Raleigh M-Trax Ti, Strida LT, Giant Halfway
  • lakesludditelakesluddite Posts: 1,332
    If you do go for Hydraulic discs on a road bike, be aware that some (most?) Specialized road disc bikes have a compatibility issue regarding the wheels. The wheels they come with as standard have a slightly smaller hub as they have slightly shorter chain-stays, so you will have problems if you want to upgrade the wheelset to something other than Specialized wheels (ie Axis or Roval).

    I know because I've tried to do it - still awaiting a new set of wheels from the US!

    As for the original question - will there ever be a time that components are not being upgraded and 'improved'?
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