Before we get stuck into this month’s step-by-step, here’s a word of warning — if you can’t bleed the disc brakes on your bike don’t even attempt this upgrade. If you have a problem it’ll be doubly difficult trying to find out if it’s the Goodridge cables that were installed incorrectly or the final bleed that went wrong. The sensible and cheap option is to get a bike shop to do it.
The Goodridge hoses replace the current ones on your disc brakes and there’s a good reason to fit them — they improve the brake’s performance and feel. If you cut a slice through one of the hoses you’d see a PTFE liner surrounded by a (three-wire) braided stainless steel sheath. This resists expansion a lot more effectively that the standard plastic liner fitted to most discs, and means all the brake force goes into pushing the pistons and pads against the rotor, not bowing the hose outward.
Goodridge sells hoses as Brakeline Kits (for between £27.99-£33.50) but dealers can also build a complete system from a large ‘dealer pack’ for a little less, by allowing you to pick and choose fittings to match those on your current brake. Fittings are either stainless steel or aluminium, the latter are available in five colours and tested in this month’s product (see page 49). Featured below are the five common types of fitting. Left to right they are: M6, M8 swivel, M8 fixed, Hayes and a banjo.
All these hose fittings have a unique (and patented) two-part attachment with a threaded tail and locking collar. Unlike the usual olive-based systems this is more reliable, easier to install and reusable. Check compatibility first though, because we found we had to reuse the bleed bolt when fitting the hoses to our Formula Oro brakes, because this bolt also acts as the bridge bolt, joining the two halves of the caliper together.
We had two visitors in this month to help us out with this upgrade: Toby Smith for Goodridge distributor Hotlines (01208 821775, www.hotlines-uk.com) and Adam Ramsden from Goodridge (01392 369090, www.goodridge.net).
1 First things first. Measure the new hose against your existing one.
2 Cut the hose with a very sharp set of cable cutters. Don’t use a knife, it won’t cut through the stainless steel sheath.
3 Remove the wheel and then the brake pads (remember to make a note of the orientation of the left and right pads).
4 Undo and remove both bolts holding the hose to the caliper and lever. Set them to one side if you need to reuse them.
5 Shave 11mm of the plastic cover off both ends of the new hose.
6 Using the end of the tail fitting, round out the end of the PTFE core.
7 Fit the yellow plastic sleeve and the two locking collars onto the hose.
8 Install the banjo fittings using either the mandrel tool or an adjustable spanner. Tighten until they’re ‘snug’ or there’s a 1mm gap between collar and tail.
9 Tighten both collars using a 8mm spanner.
10 Fit the hose to the brakes. If you’re using banjos at both ends, use the genuine Goodridge O-rings, not the old ones.
11 On the front brake align the hose parallel to the fork leg (it looks better) and tighten the fixing bolt.
12 Finally, bleed the brakes according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
After cutting, the end of the hose may have deformed slightly. Nip it gently with a pair of pliers to make it round.
A small drop of brake fluid in the hose will help the fitting glide into the hose.
If you have to thread the hose through line guides or a swingarm, now is the time to do it. You can shave off the outer cover to squeeze it into any tight line guides.