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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got ultegra levers and crane creek SCR-5 calipers w/ cartridge pads, but my brakes don't 'grab' the way I would like. The calipers are high end crane creeks and seem to be great, so I'm thinking the pads are crap. I do a lot of riding on hills and I'm on the big end (6'4",210lbs.), so I want significant stopping ability and don't feel I have it now. Any advice? If I get new pads, what do you recommend? Thanks for the help!
 

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Yes, they do. I don't know about your brakes specifically. Here's my experience. I have a cheap hybrid that I use for commuting and riding around the city. It came with Tektro cantis. At first, the brakes were great. Then, they started to get really loud and were just weak. I would try sanding the pads a bit. They would still get "bad" after a couple rides. Replaced the pads with Shimano, and they are fine now.

Then, I got an Orbea with Orbea brand Zeus brakes. They were weak from the beginning. I thought I was used to the higher mechanical advantage of canti's. But, they were almost dangerous riding on the hoods. I replaced the whole setup with Campy Chorus brakes and stock campy pads. Couldn't be happier.

I hear Kool Stop is good. Also, machined wheel rims work a lot better.
 

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Lipton said:
I've got ultegra levers and crane creek SCR-5 calipers w/ cartridge pads, but my brakes don't 'grab' the way I would like. The calipers are high end crane creeks and seem to be great, so I'm thinking the pads are crap. I do a lot of riding on hills and I'm on the big end (6'4",210lbs.), so I want significant stopping ability and don't feel I have it now. Any advice? If I get new pads, what do you recommend? Thanks for the help!
Comparing generally similar brakes (like brand 'X' cantilevers vs. brand 'Y' cantilevers of brand 'Z' dual pivots vs. brand 'W' dual pivots), the brake pads are the definitely the biggest variable. Other variables are cables/housing, and the shape and geometry of the levers. The calipers themselves are generally not the biggest variable in brake performance.

A set of poorly performing brakes can often be transformed into excellent performers by a changing the pads. On excellent brand of pads is Kool Stop. In particular, their salmon pads are generally reputed to have excellent quality braking in dry conditions, and less degradation than most in we condition. Kool Stop pads come in a variety of shapes and fittings, so they can fit most any type of brake.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the info...

Thanks very much for all the tips. I remember hearing about Kool Stop before, but this is confirmation that they're one of the best. I will try those and see if it helps. Thanks again!
 
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