Saturday, May 12, 2012

Bike Tech: Shimano M445 Hydraulic Brakes Review

Shimano M445 Disc Brake System
Shimano is known for its mountain and road bike components with a wide range of products for different users and budget. This is my review of their entry level hydraulic disc brake system.
I bought a set of Shimano M445 Hydraulic Brakes from a local bike shop in Binan last April 30, 2011

Here are my observations:

1. Price - It set me back PhP3500. I believe this is the fair market price for this type of hydros from shimano.

2. Performance - From what I heard from numerous hydraulic brake users, there is a significant improvement over the mechanical disc brakes I am familiar with. Before, my rear brakes were useless in terms of stopping with load. I tried every trick of aligning the pads, cleaning the rotors with IPA, lubing the cables, etc, still, the mechanical MX4 Hayes failed to stop my rear wheels. For the new Shimano brakes, I noticed that the stopping power improves as the pads seats and breaks-in in time.

3. Appearance - the white caliper housing fits the black/white color scheme of my bike. The color scheme of the levers is also black and white.

4. Overall - It is my first time to use a hydraulic brake system so I have no base of comparison. I will post a long term user report for Shimano M445 brakes in the 6th month of use, or if there are problems/issues that arise.
 
Note: after more than a year of use, my brakes still function normally. The only maintenance I did here is when I added mineral oil to the reservoir just to get the experience of bleeding hydraulic brake systems.
 

4 comments:

BurritO said...

hey hows your m445? just got mine today.. entry level only

Gerald Jerico Velayo said...

my M445 still performs well, I have replaced my rear pads because I bike at least 80kms per week

Mahtab Alam said...

How to repair it please inform me.......

Gerald Jerico Velayo said...

Mahtab, sorry for the very late reply, almost two years :)
Repairing the M445 is roughly the same as that of regular Shimano Hydraulic brakes, use only Shimano Mineral oil, never get the pads dirty, ensure that the hoses do not leak. If you set these brakes, minimal adjustments are necessary. Enjoy and I hope this answers your question.