Might be time to have a place for brake reviews, esp since there are now disc and rim brakes available in many variations. When you post your reviews, make sure you tell us what you ride and where…
KH 36 Night Rider rim, double tracks, easy XC, red Magura HS 33 (small piston), KH Spooner, KH brake hanger/KH touring bar:
Standard Brycer set up, older style with the red spoked knob (03-04), black pads. Works well, some rubbing due to rim flex, otherwise a fine choice for a 36er, don’t use it as much due to running 165 cranks, but usefull for easing down hills and holding me in place when resting.
KH 29 47mm FR rim, single track, tech muni, Magura HS 33 (large piston), KH spooner, KH touing bar:
Brycer Frankbrake utilizing HS 33 new style lever and HS 33 old big piston style lever base (master) with newer HS 33 slaves. I got this lever after breaking my small piston lever “strap”. I just started riding this lever, decided to try the Frankbrake to see if it would be little less grabby and have less rim rub. According to Bryce, the bigger piston requires more lever pressure to actuate and has a larger range of travel at the slaves, so you can run them further from the rim. It works as advertised, still plenty of power, less grab, and less rub. It also looks beefier since the base is larger, shoudl also be a little more resistant to rock hits on UPD’s
Nimbus Oregon 26er Large Marge 65mm rim, single track, tech muni, snow and mud machine, Shimano M525 Disc Brake with 180mm rotor, KH Spooner, KH Brake hanger:
The Oregon comes stock with a Bengal disc brake which is not bad, but being that it’s white in color, I just didn’t like how it fit with my overall color scheme of green/gold/black, so I swapped out brakes and installed a larger rotor. The brake works great, better than a rim brake since there is no rub and it’s more less unaffected by water; well at least less affected and dries faster after getting wet. I have only had one problem once I got it set up correctly: While riding in Colorado my son had a UPD and the lever plunger come out of the lever body, losing contact with the piston.
There is a C clip that holds the lever plunger into the lever body. Apaprently this C clip is not all that strong, so a sharp knock like you get when your seat hits the ground grab handle first. I was able to get it working on the trail, but it happened again so I taped the lever in place and my son had ride breakless for the day. I fixed the C clip by stretching it out and reinstalling it, but I think this is a weak link and worth monitoring over time in all hydraulic disc brakes since this is the industry standard for retaining the plunger.
This uni doesn’t get ridden as much during the summer, so I’ll have to keep an eye on it as my son and I ride it more over the Fall and Winter. I think it’s worth looking at replacing the C clip with a nice aftermarket stainless clip and maybe keeping one in your tool big.