Formula Brakes… Some advice…

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  • Formula Brakes… Some advice…
  • batman11
    Member

    Well I’m a big fan of formula since the heady days of the ora’s, still got a set now had them 6 years and still work fine about due a bleed though :D.
    Now run R0/Rx and and an Oem variant off a cube bike I picked up cheep I believe these are based on the T serious.
    All are nice brakes work great, great modulation, great power etc if bed in right pads last for ages and if you look about you can get some killer deals like these.
    http://www.merlincycles.com/bike-shop/mtb-parts/brakes/disc-brakes/formula-disc-brakes-1/formula-t1s-disc-brakes-front-rear-set.html
    Good luck

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    That’s the ones I was looking at batman11. Though wondering if it was worthwhile spending another £50 for some 2012 T1 brakes.

    Also now pondering some very cheap Magura MT6’s, and even Shimano Zee’s! 😕 Can’t make my flipping mind up what I want…

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    Not overly familair with Formula, other than having ridden (and been very impressed by) some original The One’s a few years ago. Well, that and have seen some older Formula’s corrode and seized in the workshop and require replacing. So my experience so far suggests high performance, but relatively high maintenance (but probably not as high maintenance as Avid).

    Anyway… Looking at some new brakes for my 29er right now, really tempted by some Formula’s, especially the T1s. What’s the real world difference between the T1 and T1s though? Just a cheaper master cylinder? Worth spending the extra on the T1 or just go with T1s? Or what about the R1 and R1s?

    waldo1
    Member

    I’ve got some 2013 25th anniversary t1’s in Bronze with all the adjusters, fcs, lever reach and caliper caps etc in red.
    They have the enhanced caliper technology and have been used only twice.
    Very rare brakes.
    Retail at £500. I’ll let them go for £280.

    mulv1976
    Member

    I was considering getting the T1s brakes too after realising my avid trail x0 were not so good on the long descents at les arcs. The guide said his formula were not so good and suffered fade. Two guys had total failure the week before on formula brakes apparently. The only guys who had no issues were the ones on shimano.

    It depends on what kind of riding you do I suppose. I’ll be getting some xt brakes with ice tech pads and discs if I go to the alps next year.

    Premier Icon monkeyp
    Subscriber

    I have Formula RX’s on two of my bikes and love them. I have one set on the Fatty with a 203 front rotor and another on my Cannondale Rush used for XC, 24 hour etc.

    The best place to look though is the Formula website. Believe it or not, you can pick up a full set (front and rear) of RX’s, with mounts and disks of your choice in size, including everything required to shorten the hoses and spare lever clamps for about £135 delivered!

    They also have other older models for seriously low prices, but the RX’s are the newest on their special offers I think.

    jonah tonto
    Member

    ill second what the monkey says – im eyeing up a pair of mega off the formula site for £110 ish

    Premier Icon weeksy
    Subscriber

    The forumla site is AWSOME for kits.

    I bought a set of RX’s with 203 rotors, fitting kit etc, all fullly bled, £125 posted… bargain !!!

    cubemeup
    Member

    Check silver fish uk for deals

    aphex_2k
    Member

    Been runnning k18s for a few years and really happy with them. Probably due a bleed but they’re still stopping me and working find.

    I know people go on about Deore / SLX / XT brakes but I just love the feel of Formula brakes and would buy another set.

    maxtorque
    Member

    I have a set of R1s (203/180) on my Zesty, and a set of TheOnes (180/160) on my c456. Both sets have been pretty reliable, without any fade in the alps (although my “brakesaving” technique of regularly using my face to brake with may have helped reduced fade….;-) and surviving the last wet winter in the uk. So far, only problem has been a leaking quick connector on the zesty (internally routed) that started to slowly weep a bit when the bike hadn’t been ridden for a day or two. That was fixed by just removing the quick connector!.

    Biggest issue for me is that the pads are a bit “thin” when new. I guess the designers wanted to reduce mass as much as possible, so to get the calipers thinner they only spec thin pad material. As such, in wet conditions i find i can go through a set pretty quickly (like 1 lap of cannock for example!). To combat this i run el cheapo Superstar pad sets, which are pretty much disposable, and you can throw a set in without breaking the bank! These do tend to squeal a bit when wet and braking gently however.

    sugdenr
    Member

    I use the Ones. Both sets the pistons dont seem to come out quite square, pads are stupid thin, can be a bit tricky to setup, and I am currently finding them a bugger to bleed :x.
    Honestly, unless you are a tart, fussy about setup or doing mega Alps downhill etc I’d just go with Shimano.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    Can’t speak for the T1S, but the R1S is basically an R1 lever and RX caliper, works perfectly well but adds a little weight. (and marketing men will no doubt tell you the cheaper caliper is flexier or some such pish)

    sugdenr – Member

    pads are stupid thin

    😕 Same thickness as my Shimanos.

    mulv1976 – Member

    I was considering getting the T1s brakes too after realising my avid trail x0 were not so good on the long descents at les arcs. The guide said his formula were not so good and suffered fade.

    Which brakes was he using? My The Ones have never missed a beat in the alps or on my dh bike (and nobody brakes as much as me 😉 First run down fort william I don’t think I let off the back brake for a second, the discs went a very pretty colour but they never faded at all)… RXs aren’t very good though frankly.

    aphex_2k
    Member

    I just dont like how the Shimano brakes I’ve used, feel. On/off with very little in between.

    Each to their own though eh?

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    Can’t speak for the T1S, but the R1S is basically an R1 lever and RX caliper, works perfectly well but adds a little weight. (and marketing men will no doubt tell you the cheaper caliper is flexier or some such pish)

    Just asked Silverfish. The T1s is indeed an OEM brake with a T1 caliper and an RX lever. Like you say, adds a little weight, but still works really well.

    RXs aren’t very good though frankly.

    What makes you say that? I’ve tried some new ones and they felt pretty decent to me. Not T1/R1 good for sure, but decent enough. Only thing I didn’t like about the RX’s was the pair that were a couple of years old I tried, the levers had gone a bit rattly. Which leads me to think if I do go the Formula route, I’m better off saving the extra for proper T1 or R1 brakes.

    bigyinn
    Member

    Shimano brakes have plenty of modulation, but you need to acclimatise to their feel.

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    Shimano brakes have plenty of modulation, but you need to acclimatise to their feel.

    Where in the original post did I ask about Shimano brakes?

    I know ALL about Shimano brakes… They’re all I’ve owned (XTR’s, XT’s, SLX’s, Deore’s etc. in various guises) for the last 10 years!

    I fancy a change and have really been impressed by Formula’s that I’ve tried. Hence asking…

    Premier Icon Nobeerinthefridge
    Subscriber

    I’ve had a set of the ones for 4 years, had to bleed them recently for the first time, as the pads were rubbing slightly. First I’ve had to do anything other than pad changes since new.
    I’ve a set of megas as well, two years now, not had to do anything to them, both very powerful with nice modulation. The only thing that would make me buy anything other than formula next time would be cost, ie if shimano were half the price, which they pretty much are.

    Some people have issues with all kit, some don’t, as said above – each to their own.

    mulv1976
    Member

    Which brakes was he using? My The Ones have never missed a beat in the alps or on my dh bike (and nobody brakes as much as me First run down fort william I don’t think I let off the back brake for a second, the discs went a very pretty colour but they never faded at all)… RXs aren’t very good though frankly.

    I can’t remember what he had tbh, it didn’t seem to affect his riding skills though to be fair! Endo-ing around steep switchbacks in particular was impressive.

    I am seriously tempted by the formulas especially the offers at merlin. My mate is about to buy some xt so I’ll see how he gets on. I might just go the full monty if I go to les arcs again and get some formula r0 (I am pretty much on the brakes all the time). The avids I used were not good at all once they got hot so I don’t fancy using them again.

    bigyinn
    Member

    mboy, my response was to :-

    aphex_2k – Member

    I just dont like how the Shimano brakes I’ve used, feel. On/off with very little in between.

    _tom_
    Member

    I was pretty pleased with the k18 I had, it was fine for a few months riding Whistler bike park basically every day! Pad life wasnt amazing though as they’re quite small, and the lever gave me a blister after a while.

    If/when I replace my avids it’ll probably be with Formula as I’m not a huge fan of the Shimanos I had (slx).

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    mboy – Member

    What makes you say that? I’ve tried some new ones and they felt pretty decent to me

    Just found them a little temperamental and, well, cut-rate… Limited adjustability, stuff like that. But also you can still get Oros, which are an ancient brake but better IMO. Formula never really seem that into the budget market, other folks do it better. My Ones are awesome- got a set on a dh bike, a set on a 23lb ti hardtail, they’re light enough and subtle enough for one and powerful and tough enough for the other.

    The rattly lever thing is a little bit of a formula trait tbh.

    I might have a brand new pair of RX brakes for sale soon. Coming on a new bike but I’ll be installing shimanos when the bike arrives. Anyone interested, let me know, email in profile.

    waldo1
    Member

    Mboy, I think if you find a set of the ones (ect version) for a good price you’ll love them.
    Most manufactures are making some great brakes at the mo. The power and weight of t1’s is hard to resist.

    wobbliscott
    Member

    Just put a set of RX’s on mine and they’re great. Excellent modulation and feel. I like the way the cylinder is perpendicular to the bars, it gets it out of the way and liberates space and gives you more flex ability to arrange all the various bits and bobs on your handlebars. Also the ergonomics of the lever is good. However I’ve read that since the holes on the disc are concentric and not overlapping you can get uneven disc wear . I’m seeing how it goes, but might be worth using other discs.

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    The rattly lever thing is a little bit of a formula trait tbh.

    From new? Or when do they start to get rattly? Is it easily sorted, or just a case of “they’re all like that, live with it”?

    Really want to try some Formula’s now, but worried after so many years of Shimano ownership I’ll regret it.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    I never buy anything new 😳 But I think of my assorted Oros and The Ones, all of them have been a wee bit rattly/loose. Not badly, mind. I think it’s by design, they have less stuff holding everything together, which gives them a lighter feel (you’re not overcoming a strong return spring) and also can make them more survivable (my Oro levers aren’t bolted to the piston, so if the lever pulls forward it just pulls away and avoids causing any damage- quite clever.

    And yeah, probably all of mine are a bit worn too, but then everything wears. Have to say, it doesn’t bother me in the slightest, I notice it when I think about it but not when I’m riding.

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