January 27, 2017 at 8:12 pm #815122
Today I had my first chance to take a look at one of these fancy Jagwire rotors in person, for which I took a few minutes to poke around with it. As such, I figured I post a little breakdown and analysis of them here before anyone makes the mistake of wasting $88 a piece on this rubbish.
These are meant to be a knock off of Shimano’s pristine RT99 Ice Tech Freeza rotors – which are outstanding – by using aluminum radiator fins. Here are a couple stock photos so you can see what I mean.
To start with, contrary to the title, these are not vented rotors. Vented brake rotors have corrugated material between the left and right braking surface to allow air to actually flow through the middle of the brake rotor. These have no such feature.
What makes the RT99 rotor so effective is that it has aluminum (a material of great thermal conductivity) sandwiched between the stainless steel braking surfaces, which draws heat away from the braking surface. The heat is then radiated away via the visible fins along the inner diameter of the braking surface.
The Jagwire, however, just has aluminum fins riveted to the inside of the rotor. You can see this in the following two photos. In the final photo, I used a Sharpie to outline the overlap between the aluminum fins and the steel rotor in order to show how small it is.
On top of the fact the overlap area is very small, the only legitimate area for heat sink is the minuscule amount of contact area on the riveted sections. The rest of the aluminum fin is just kinda-sorta touching the steel rotor, but there are often gaps between the materials, which means it is not a reliable heat sink. There has to be proper bonding in order to create reliable heat dissipation.
Furthermore, if you look at the wear on the rotor in the first photo, you can see the brake pads actually hit the aluminum fins! I always advocate running rotors that match the brakes in order to make sure the contact area of the brake pads match that of the rotor, and to make sure the pad and rotor materials are optimized for one another. Since Jagwire doesn’t make actual brakes it make sense that they totally screwed this up. This rotor was mounted to a cyclocross bike with Sram Force brake using no adapters. So unless the fork was WAY off in its location of the brake mount (highly unlikely), these rotors don’t have a suitable brake track for Sram brakes (or probably Shimano, since they are fairly close to one another)
Finally, the discolouration you see just inside the brake track of the rotor is heat singeing – and this is on a cyclocross bike. Clearly the rotors are not dissipating heat too well.
Garbage.January 28, 2017 at 6:31 pm #815129
Shimano has a bunch of patents on their Ice-tech rotors so it’s not surprising that no one else can copy them. Everything from the aluminum sandwich construction, extended heat sink fins, and even the way the friction disc is attached to the carrier is covered by patents. No one else will be legally making Ice-tech rotors for the next 10-15 years. They also have a patent on a self-dropping dropper post, which I hope they put into production sometime soon.February 1, 2017 at 3:07 pm #815234
That rotor is a joke right? Over the cost of a season(s) that a rotor will last it’s ludicrous to try and save only to lose the performance benefit the Ice Tech Freeza rotors provide. if you get why you need it, then get the real deal. Certain things can be knocked off, this cannot. Go home Jagwire, you drunk. Is the CR in CR1 short for crap?
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