Avid BB7 Road SL Mechanical Disc Brakes

bb7roadsl_large

They Say
Mechanical Disc Brakes - 
There’s power in simplicity. For years now, ball bearing disc brakes have been a favorite among riders who want control, durability, dependability and piece-of-cake adjusting. BB’s adjustment knobs make quick work out of setting the perfect distance between the pads and rotor, as well as adjusting for pad wear. This is something you just can’t do with hydraulic brakes. And when you run ball bearing disc brakes, you can match them with our Speed Dial® levers for sweet, adjustable modulation.

Featherweight that packs a punch - This race-ready mechanical disc brake takes the proven power and performance of BB7 and dials it up a few notches with its sleek “Falcon Grey” anodizing and weight-saving hardware. The lightweight HS1 rotors and all-titanium hardware saves 25 grams per wheel. So you’ll be just as confident on the climbs as you are on the descents.

Compatible with Red, Force, Rival and Apex levers.
Weight 170 grams, Caliper only
Caliper Design Mechanical, Forged 2-piece Aluminum
Finish Falcon Grey (2012 Red Match)
Rotor HS1 140/160mm
Pad Aluminum-backed Organic
Adjustment Dual Knob Pad Adjustment, Tri-Align Caliper Positioning System
Intended Use CX/TRK/COM/ROAD
 
Tri-Align™ Caliper Positioning System™ - Another original Avid technology making your life better—there’s never been an easier brake to install and adjust. With Avid’s Tri-Align™Caliper Positioning System™, aligning the caliper to the rotor literally takes seconds. Just loosen the CPS™ bolts a little, and then squeeze the brake lever while re-tightening the bolts. Perfect caliper alignment—just like that.
BB7 SL (8)
We Say – On first inspection of these beauties I had two immediate impressions.
Firstly the finish – a very cool sophisticated ‘falcon grey’ colour that I was later informed by a riding buddy went with the SRAM Force groupset. Not a coincidence I would imagine as the two brands are under the same company umbrella. Secondly, a change of colour for the dialling adjustment knobs from the old cadmium red to a more subdued and much better black. I say this because unless your bikes colouring compliments these red dials they do tend to stand out. I remember having the earlier BB7′s on a stealthy black bike which became no longer stealthy due to these red dials.Fitting the brakes to the frame was easy with all the components required including a star Allen key and spare bolts with araldite already on the threads, great. The instruction booklet for how to fit was straightforward with good descriptive illustrations. It was also brief, which was great, no unnecessary drivel that makes you want to throw instructions in the bin and fit it your own way.Once the brakes were fitted to the frame and the cables adjusted ready to ride, I then had to put some mudguards on as the testing started in winter. No problem with fitting the back mudguard but the front one required a homemade bracket to get around the front brake to be able to screw the guard into the fork mudguard bosses.On the first few rides out they required the usual ‘bedding in’ of the pads. This means to start with there was some slight brake judder and some screeching noise until the pad gets used to the disc. Once it does though the braking performance improves and the reliability is good to excellent with easy caliper alignment.
I have tested these brakes in various conditions from on and off road on tarmac and single-track. I have also used them in cold wet and dry dusty conditions and the brakes are quite simply reliable and effective.
In Summary - Having used BB7′s as well as hydraulic disc brakes before, I am used to how they feel and respond to the riders actions and I have to say that this newer model is exactly the same as the old one. In other words, just great! The older model has become a bit of a classic and I found there was little difference between these mechanical and hydraulic discs. With the obvious advantages that mechanical brakes bring when it comes to maintenance or repair.
Since testing this product for review Avid have released a new BB7S model with stainless steal hardware and with an anodized shiny black finish.
To view the product online, please visit Fisher Outdoor Leisure Ltd. http://www.sram.com/avid/products/avid-bb7-road-sl-mechanical-disc-brake

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