Avid Elixr 1 brake questions

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  • Avid Elixr 1 brake questions
  • Premier Icon JoeG
    Subscriber

    A pair of Avid Elixr 1s came OEM on my new bike. I’ve read some horror stories about Elixr brakes, but mine have been fine so far, so I’m cautiously optimistic. A couple of questions:

    – I see Avid replacement pads can have either a steel or aluminum backing plate. What are the advantages and disadvantages to the steel and Al?

    – Does the little bolt (pad pin) that keeps the brake pads and spring from falling out of the caliper come with the replacement pads?

    – The Elixr 1s use a cotter pin in place of the pad pin that is used on all of the other Elixr models. No doubt, its a little cheaper with the cotter pin, and 1s are the entry level brake, so I understand. But I’d find it hard to pull a cotter pin out and replace it on the trail unless I started riding with some needle nosed pliers. So I’d like to make my Elixr 1s take the pad pins like th eother Elixrs. I think that I have to thread the hole for the pad pin. Has anyone else done this? If so, any idea which tap I need?

    jeffskowski
    Member

    I have the same brakes and ordered replacement pads from Superstar. The sintered ones, so cannot comment on the Avid pads or whether they come with the split pins or not.

    As far as the pad retention pins, drilling and tapping would be more work than it would be worth in my opinion. For trail friendly use, I would try and find the appropriately sized R-Pins (see link below) or you could use a small allen bolt and Nyloc nut although this may require another small spanner to be carried with you. R-pins are the best option I think although they will scuff the tops of your callipers if that bothers you.

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/R-CLIP-CLIPS-retaining-pin-1-6MM-WIRE-36MM-6-10MM-SHAFT-/280881597459?pt=UK_DIY_Material_Nails_Fixing_MJ&hash=item4165d90c13

    Premier Icon JoeG
    Subscriber

    Good ideas about the bolts and clips. I’ll definitely consider those options.

    poolman
    Member

    I have run the 5s on a bike for 2 years now & they’ve been faultless. I use the superstar replacement pads & they come with the retaining clips. I am after a new brakeset & probably would have bought another set of 5s but on another thread here have been pointed towards XT – at similar money they look a lot better.

    Premier Icon JoeG
    Subscriber

    After some thought, I don’t think that the bolts will work. The pin has to be smooth for the pads to slide back and forth on, so the bolt threads would be the issue.

    I was at the hardware store and they had the R-pins as you call them. Those might work; the only issue is that there were a zillion different sizes! I’m not sure that I want to drag a fatbike into a hardware store…

    I do see that the Avid pins come with their pads. So unless I have problems and sh1tcan the brakes, I’ll get them whenever I buy replacement brake pads.

    Premier Icon stimpy
    Subscriber

    I’ve got 3’s on mine – some replacement pads do come with pins, some don’t.

    Avid spares – do
    Superstar – do
    Nukeproof – don’t
    Clarkes – don’t

    jeffskowski
    Member

    Good point about the threads but the bolt does not have to be a tight fit. The retaining pin is just there to stop the pads falling/being pushed out which is why a split pin will suffice but as you say, a threaded rod may cause issues. They use split pins on vehicle calipers too. The pins don’t take any load. They are a crude solution but one that works but not trail friendly as you say.

    My pads from Superstar came with the return springs but NOT the retaining pins.
    As for the R-Clip. You just need it to be made of wire that will fit the hole (same diameter as the original pins) and long enough to go through the other side of the calliper (same length as the original pins) without fouling the spokes etc

    Rather than taking your bike in, pull a split pin out and take that to get a match 🙂

    Premier Icon JoeG
    Subscriber

    I posted my same question at MTBR and someone responded that there is a TSB out on the Elixir 1s. I haven’t seen the TSB myself, but here is what the poster said.

    Anything that falls between the code 1may12B and 21sept12B written on the caliper is up for the service bulletin. It is due to an undersized o-ring in the lever body

    Mine are not affected, but if you have Elixir 1s it might be worth a look to see if yours are. HTH.

    Premier Icon JoeG
    Subscriber

    So here are the answers to my questions at the start of the thread:

    – Avid brand pads come with the pad pin, a cotter pin, and the spring as well. Some other brands, Kool Stop for instance, do not have the pad or cotter pin included with them.

    – The threading on the pad pins is M4x0.7, coarse metric thread. I had the correct tap in my Craftsman metric tap and die set. Only the outboard hole needs to be threaded, and it did not need to be drilled out larger before threading. Piece of cake to do!

    So, my Elixir 1s now have the pad pin installed like the rest of the Elixir brake models. 8)

    zerocool
    Member

    Don’t buy sintered Superstar Pads. Unless you’re planning on wearing ear defenders, they’re so noisy.

    I’ve had no other problems with other Superstar products apart fom their brake pads.

    Premier Icon JoeG
    Subscriber

    I’m in the US and AFAIK Superstar isn’t sold here. I’ll probably just use Avid ones or maybe Kool Stop.

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