Serious stopping power on the cheap
I bought a set of these and a set of the Avid SD-7s, and compared them directly to see if the SD-7s are really that much of an upgrade. Well, they are definitely an upgrade, but the SD-5 is still a great direct-pull brake.
The biggest differences I noticed:
- Shoes. These have bolt-on brake shoes, as opposed to the cartridges of the SD-7. They provide a softer lever feel, and slightly less stopping power. On the other hand, they are much quieter than the 7's out of the box.
- Cable boot. You have to slide the boot off the noodle to unhook the noodle from the brake arm link. This is hard on the rubber.
- Spring adjusters. These have a Philips head. I find these (as opposed to a hex head) are more prone to slipout and stripping. I guess it makes it possible to do adjustments away from home when you don't have an Allen set handy. Of course, that's probably when the adjusters will get damaged.
Still, this is a fine brake for the price of a good set of pads. Paired with a good set of levers, the improvement over traditional cantilevers is astounding. Do yourself a favor, and upgrade.
Replaced some old Pro Max brakes with these. Very noticeable difference. No fade, good reaction feel. Springs are stiff which I like. I did however use different pads. Im just not a fan of the basic avid pads that these come with. Overall, for the price, an excellent brake.