When the goal is stopping power, maximizing surface area and clamping force is paramount. To evenly distribute forces throughout larger pads, high-performance vehicles sport multi-piston calipers. Avid's not wet behind the ears to the multi-piston game, but -- unlike the newly designed XO Trail brake -- its earlier offerings were solely intended for gravity use, and could easily double for boat anchors.
Lucky for the all-mountain/enduro set, Avid didn't just go digging in its extensive parts bin to pair an XO master cylinder to Code calipers. Instead, what you get is a completely unique four piston caliper that won't weigh your rig down. The resulting two-piece caliper houses 16mm and 14mm pistons.
This combination offers the perfect balance of modulation vs. power, allowing a controlled speed scrub to full on, eyeball elongating power. The minimalist caliper uses a post mount, and the line is connected via an adjustable banjo bolt on the back. This allows a clean installation on a variety of frames -- including the current trend towards chainstay mounts.
At the levers, Avid took the time to beef things up from the standard XO offering. Instead of a hollow pivot rotating on a bushing, the XO Trail's lever rides on dual sealed bearings. This adds strength and long-lasting, smooth action to the picture. Avid's Taperbore technology is employed here, but with the all new internals that feature a relocated, easy-to-access bleed port and an air trap to automatically isolate any tiny bubbles from the system.
The XO Trail master cylinder has lever reach and pad contact adjustment to accommodate individual rider preferences, and the clamp is matchmaker compatible for plenty of handlebar/shifter/remote mounting options. Connecting the caliper and lever is a high-strength, braided polyester hose that ensures lever input are not lost to expansion.
The Avid XO Trail Disc Brakes come in either Silver or Black, and with three rotor optoins; 160, 180, or 200mm.
6 ft, 215 wt.
150/140 Travel 27.5 trail bike
180 F 160 R Rotor
Similar Products used: Formula RX, Shimano XTR Trail, Shimano XT, Avid Juicy 7 Ultimates
Honestly, a lot of the below reviews are correct. These brakes do require maintenance, but not nearly as much as people make it out to be. Maybe I got a good set, who knows, but they functioned perfectly out of the box. After one full season (May-Oct) of riding between 2-7 days a week in Utah, they have performed better than any brake I have ridden.
Out of the box, they do require more adjustment to get dialed, once they are, they are the best. Organic pads and 4 pistons stop me on even the fastest descents. If you dial the contact all the way out, then use a zip tie between the pads to set the contact as close to the rotor as possible, you get instant engagement and then as the pads wear, you can dial the contact point in. Once you?ve ran out of this adjustment (a month or so of riding for me) you just do the process over again. I bled my brakes once this season, and really didn?t need to after I discovered the above trick.
I found myself riding some popular descents in Park City, one of which has a nice cheese wedge lip into a downhill into a flat left corner, and going in to the whole setup faster than ever before, because even over the chatter braking bumps in the landing I knew I would be able to grab enough brake to make the corner successfully. The slow speed modulation and working techy sections in Moab are no problem, and shutting it down while in a sketchy situation is optimal.
These brakes are not for everyone. They have more power than the XT?s and bite harder. They do require some maintenance, but if you are lubing your chain, and adjusting your derailleurs once a month, it doesn?t hurt to take an extra 15 minutes and adjust your brakes. If you are looking for set it and forget it, then look towards other brakes, but if you are ok with a little work to make your
I know everyone thinks the new XT's are the be all, end all brakes but its not all about brute power. I have had the current XT's and loved them once I got used to them, but they are basically an on/off switch with hardly any modulation.
The new 4 piston Sram trail brakes have comparable levels of power but due to the dramatic nature of the XT's they feel much more powerful.
If you do not have experience trimming the lines and/or bleeding them, do yourself a favor and take them to a shop after install to get them set-up right. Then enjoy.
Lighter than the XT's and the new HS1 rotors are light and quiet on my bike. I went from 180mm fr/rr XT icetech rotors to 160mm fr/rr HS1's with the X0 trails, that says allot.
I'm a big rider, about 230#, and they work perfectly with no fade anywhere I've ridden, even with the smaller rotors. And they have gotten rid of the CPS washer system on these, nice.
I am a bike fan of the SRAM Avid brakes, great stopping power, low maintenance and light weight.
Until recently I would have said these are the best brakes on the market, but Shimano has really stepped it up in the lastest generation XT and XTR brakes, which have insane stopping power and the icetech rotors are impossibly good at shedding heat. I still think the Avid Trails are a five star brake and I am happy to see Shimano and SRAM pushing the envelope of what is possible. If I was building up a bike today I am not sure which brake I would choose, it would likely come down to a cost decision.
Lightweight, powerful brake which has been more than enough for All-Mountain riding to laps in the park to full on DH. They do require a little more attention (even more so than the standard x0's), but have stood up to plenty of abuse and I have no complaints otherwise.
These brakes require A LOT of maintenance. Not only do they need bled a lot, but they are very difficult to bleed. Save yourself the time and frustration and take them to a bike shop. I've been through two sets of X0s and one set of trails and have since switched to Shimano. The XTs have as much power as the trails and they are extremely low maintenance and a fraction of the price.
Save yourself a lot of headache. Buy the xt or xtr. More power and reliability .
I have used 4 different sets of XO trail brakes in the past 2 seasons, and they have multiple consistent problems. Usually, out of the box they need to be bled again. After 2-3 months of riding, all of mine had to be bled again. I personally feel the lever is too long, and doesn't allow for good modulation until the lever is close to the bar; by that time, I am slamming on the brakes because it took so long to catch up with my attempt to modulate. Ran Avid Elixir 5s last year as well, no problems. I am now using Shimano XTs and feel they are the best bang for the buck.