Rim Brake Calipers: SRAM Red vs Shimano Dura Ace

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
Mr.Gib
Posts: 3552
Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2005 4:12 pm
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by Mr.Gib

alcatraz wrote:
Wed Nov 21, 2018 5:50 am
Also from time to time is good to check the calipers for play. There shouldn't be any play in them if you pull/push the arms sideways. If there is it could explain the spongyness and the brake should be cleaned and reassembled. If it's clean already then tighten the pivot point that has play.
No play in my brakes. The spongyness I am talking about comes from the caliper literally flexing under hard braking. Just squeeze the levers until the pads contact the rims and keep squeezing. These brake bend a lot. As noted it doesn't really affect stopping power but it does effect the ability to modulate. But I still ride them on my light bike.
wheelsONfire wrote: When we ride disc brakes the whole deal of braking is just like a leaving a fart. It happens and then it's over. Nothing planned and nothing to get nervous for.

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Calnago
Posts: 8173
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2010 9:14 pm

by Calnago

@Lewn777: This may or may not be relevant to your situation as I’ve not tried the Dura-Ace calipers with SRAM levers. But it still might be somewhat applicable to what you’re trying to do.
I also agree that the current 9100 rim calipers are probably the nicest out there, functionally and aesthetically. They are super stiff, easy to set up and maintain, and look sleek and beefy. They work. Period. For those reasons I tried using them on my Koppenberg along with Campy levers as an experiment. I’ve got Shimano 105 5800 calipers on my rain bike along with Campy levers and it works fine, and gave me the clearance I needed to get full fenders underneath while running 25mm tubular tires. So, with the newer 9100 calipers having essentially the same physical operation as the 105’s (one of those rare cases where a design change hit the lower end group before the higher end), I figured I’d go that route on my Koppenberg, but found that I just couldn’t get them to work very well. Either the brake levers would bottom out against the bars before I could apply full force if ever needed, or they had to be set too close to the rims which decreased the modulation. They just felt “spongy”, through no fault of either the lever or the caliper, but just the whole setup. What it came down to was the difference in rim widths I was using between the two bikes. My rain bike is set up with standard 20mm Nemesis rims, while on the Koppenberg I’m pretty much using 24.2mm width rims. Campy and Shimano have historically had progressive pull rates with their levers/calipers, but on different ends of the spectrum. Meaning when you pull a Campy lever with their own calipers, the pads will move progressively faster, or slower (can never remember which way it goes) towards the rim depending on whether you’re at the beginning of the pull or the latter part of the pull. And Shimano, with their own calipers, would kind of do the same thing but in reverse. So, while the Campy levers seemed to pull the Shimano calipers to the rim just fine for my needs on the narrow rim, it was less than satisfactory on the wider rim. So I ended up going with just the Chorus calipers on the Koppenberg in the end, since they have slightly more clearance than either Super Record or Record.
It’s just something to think about. I’m not sure how SRAM’s levers may work in tandem with the Shimano calipers and it might even depend somewhat on the width of rim you’re using as well, as was the case with mine. You almost just have to experiment. Normally I don’t like mixing and matching, but I agree if the Shimano calipers work with your setup, that’d be a good way to go. I’d just go ahead and try it. If it doesn’t work the 9100 calipers should be an easy sell. But if they do work, then hooray.
Ultimately, here’s how I like the brake levers to operate, as depicted in the far right example of this diagram...
Image
Last edited by Calnago on Wed Nov 21, 2018 7:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Colnago C64 - The Naked Build; Colnago C60 - PR99; Trek Koppenberg - Where Emonda and Domane Meet;
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by Weenie


alcatraz
Posts: 2057
Joined: Mon Aug 29, 2016 11:19 am

by alcatraz

Friend just switched bikes and is now riding duraace9000 brakes instead of sram red and reports that these are even better. :)

/a

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wheelsONfire
Posts: 2749
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2014 8:15 am
Location: NorthEU

by wheelsONfire

One thing talking calipers. This bike that you ride today may be your last rim brake bike you buy.
If this is a reason to go for the best mix of light weight, stiffness and modulation you go EE.
If however price is prio and weight not so much. I would skip EE.
Still, EE cost much less than THM's brakes and are probably better talking efficiency.
I myself just recently bought an update kit which was about 230 USD shipped.
On that a tax of 100 USD.
Why?
Because i wanted to optimize the brakes as much as i could.
Bikes:

Ax Lightness Vial EVO Race (2018.12.21)
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=156137
Paduano Racing Fidia (kind of shelved)
Open *UP* (2016.04.14)


Ex bike; Vial EVO D

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Lewn777
Posts: 725
Joined: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:35 am

by Lewn777

Calnago wrote:
Wed Nov 21, 2018 7:20 pm
@Lewn777: This may or may not be relevant to your situation as I’ve not tried the Dura-Ace calipers with SRAM levers. But it still might be somewhat applicable to what you’re trying to do.
I also agree that the current 9100 rim calipers are probably the nicest out there, functionally and aesthetically. They are super stiff, easy to set up and maintain, and look sleek and beefy. They work. Period. For those reasons I tried using them on my Koppenberg along with Campy levers as an experiment. I’ve got Shimano 105 5800 calipers on my rain bike along with Campy levers and it works fine, and gave me the clearance I needed to get full fenders underneath while running 25mm tubular tires. So, with the newer 9100 calipers having essentially the same physical operation as the 105’s (one of those rare cases where a design change hit the lower end group before the higher end), I figured I’d go that route on my Koppenberg, but found that I just couldn’t get them to work very well. Either the brake levers would bottom out against the bars before I could apply full force if ever needed, or they had to be set too close to the rims which decreased the modulation. They just felt “spongy”, through no fault of either the lever or the caliper, but just the whole setup. What it came down to was the difference in rim widths I was using between the two bikes. My rain bike is set up with standard 20mm Nemesis rims, while on the Koppenberg I’m pretty much using 24.2mm width rims. Campy and Shimano have historically had progressive pull rates with their levers/calipers, but on different ends of the spectrum. Meaning when you pull a Campy lever with their own calipers, the pads will move progressively faster, or slower (can never remember which way it goes) towards the rim depending on whether you’re at the beginning of the pull or the latter part of the pull. And Shimano, with their own calipers, would kind of do the same thing but in reverse. So, while the Campy levers seemed to pull the Shimano calipers to the rim just fine for my needs on the narrow rim, it was less than satisfactory on the wider rim. So I ended up going with just the Chorus calipers on the Koppenberg in the end, since they have slightly more clearance than either Super Record or Record.
It’s just something to thing about. I’m not sure how SRAM’s levers may work in tandem with the Shimano calipers and it might even depend somewhat on the width of rim you’re using as well, as was the case with mine. You almost just have to experiment. Normally I don’t like mixing and matching, but I agree if the Shimano calipers work with your setup, that’d be a good way to go. I’d just go ahead and try it. If it doesn’t work the 9100 calipers should be an easy sell. But if they do work, then hooray.
Ultimately, here’s how I like the brake levers to operate, as depicted in the far right example of this diagram...
Image
Thanks for the post. Food for thought, luckily I live between two countires and have multiple bikes so any Dura-Ace calipers are going to find a home on one of my bikes. I'm using 21mm rims so I think I should be OK. But I think I might buy a front Dura-Ace caliper only as there doesn't seem to be any price saving for buying a pair then I can play with it and come to a decision about whether it works well enough. I actually like an early brake bite and after many years of MTB and motorcycle I'm good with brakes (from learning how to endo) and I don't really need to worry about modulation that much. :thumbup:

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