Brakes Lectric XP 3.0 Brakes...or lack of.

Mrteeth

New member
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Apr 13, 2023
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Lakeville, MN
My wife brought the Step Through model 12/22. So after the long winter, we finally got to put some miles on it. It's been about two weeks. Here's what I like and don't like.

Like:
  1. Fun
  2. Comfortable with the wide seat
  3. Works like it should in both Pedal assist and throttle
Dislike:
  1. The Brakes. They squeak. They are brand new. It doesn't grip and stop like it should. I hate the squeaking the most. What can be done here. It's brand new. Is this just how it goes with these type of brake system?
  2. The weight. Frankly, they should make two versions: Offroad with the fat, knobby tires and On road with skinny road tires for better efficiencies. This would reduce the weight and it would be much smoother on the road as well as getting better range.
So far, we've enjoyed it. We got the backseat and handle bars so my 8 year old can ride along. And she loves doing that. She almost stopped riding her own bike.
 
Hi and Welcome to our humble home :cool:

My wife brought the Step Through model 12/22. So after the long winter, we finally got to put some miles on it. It's been about two weeks. Here's what I like and don't like.

Like:
  1. Fun
  2. Comfortable with the wide seat
  3. Works like it should in both Pedal assist and throttle
Dislike:
  1. The Brakes. They squeak. They are brand new. It doesn't grip and stop like it should. I hate the squeaking the most. What can be done here. It's brand new. Is this just how it goes with these type of brake system?
  2. The weight. Frankly, they should make two versions: Offroad with the fat, knobby tires and On road with skinny road tires for better efficiencies. This would reduce the weight and it would be much smoother on the road as well as getting better range.
So far, we've enjoyed it. We got the backseat and handle bars so my 8 year old can ride along. And she loves doing that. She almost stopped riding her own bike.
OK, so take the brake rotor off and clean it with rubbing alcohol. Then get some sandpaper and go over it to get any other contaminants off
then wipe down with the rubbing alcohol again twice.
Do this with your brake pads but not so aggressive sanding, then just wipe til clean with rubbing alcohol pad or rag.

Then go out and find a hill and get up to about 17mph and put the brakes on fairly hard like you're trying to stop rather quickly until you get to an actual walking speed then let off the brakes completely and do it again..make sense so far mate?

Then let us know if the squeek is gone and the braking grip is better.


Hope that helps ya :)

HP
 
Hi and Welcome to our humble home :cool:


OK, so take the brake rotor off and clean it with rubbing alcohol. Then get some sandpaper and go over it to get any other contaminants off
then wipe down with the rubbing alcohol again twice.
Do this with your brake pads but not so aggressive sanding, then just wipe til clean with rubbing alcohol pad or rag.

Then go out and find a hill and get up to about 17mph and put the brakes on fairly hard like you're trying to stop rather quickly until you get to an actual walking speed then let off the brakes completely and do it again..make sense so far mate?

Then let us know if the squeek is gone and the braking grip is better.


Hope that helps ya :)

HP
How the heck am I suppose to remove the rotors?
 
Looking at a picture of Lectric XP 3.0 it appears to clearly have mechanic disk brakes. These things won't work effectually unless very finely adjusted. That includes aligning the caliper with the rotor, and very fine adjustment of the rear pad. Rather than me typing for a couple paragraphs there are good YouTube videos on how to make these simple adjustments.

If the bike comes out of a China they simply do not spend the time setting them up. My heavy 'fat bike' with well adjusted mechanical brakes stops just as well as the light street ebike I have with hydraulic brakes.

P.S. A quick way to check the adjustment is apply the brakes and look to see how much the rotor flexes.
 
I too have an XP 3.0. At 385 miles, I had to replace the brake pads. There was no more adjusting that would work on them. Yes, they were a bit loud and sounded like metal on metal most of the time, because the pads do have a lot of metal in them. My rotors appeared scored too, from the pads. I found some replacement pads on Amazon that cost less than $11 for 4 sets. The reviews were good, so I bought them. They were easy to insert and had springs and cotter pin included. So far, they are a huge improvement. Smooth and quiet stopping. We'll see how long they last, but at that price point, who cares?

The other major issue with the rear brakes that I discovered and why I was losing any braking on the rear wheel was that the caliper mounting bracket positions the caliper about 2.70 mm too high on the rotor. This not only applies less pad area to the rotor upon braking, but also allows a lip to form on each pad where eventually you will lose all braking on that wheel because as the rest of the pads wear down, the two lips eventually "kiss" each other over the top of the spinning rotor and prevent further pad pressure against the rotor. I've emailed Lectric support, but I'm not sure what, if anything, they will do about it. I've suggested that they send me a bracket that sits the caliper 2.75 mm lower so no brake pad ridges will form. We'll see. I believe I've read where some riders are milling or maybe grinding the top of the bracket down to prevent the ridge formation, but that would certainly void the warranty.

In fact, I first asked Lectric support why they don't put hydraulic brakes on this since they put them on the trike, but their response was they'd forward my suggestion up the chain, but if I were to put hydraulic brakes on the 3.0, it would void the warranty. So, WARNING: Doing any of this or working on your own bike might void the warranty!

After the warranty expires, I'm considering a dual piston, mechanical brake such as these that I found after much research
Origin Brakes.png
: ORIGIN8 BRAKE DISC OR8 VISE II MECH PM MTB:

It might be that the brake pads Lectric is using on the 3.0 have changed from what was on the 2.0. The rotor is larger on the 3.0, moving up from 160 mm to 180 mm. I met a fellow Lectric rider yesterday who has 2400 miles on his 2.0. He said he hasn't had to touch the brakes - even to adjust them. He's about my age and size and just rides around at about 12-13 mph at PAS 2.

My weight adds 180 lb to the bike and I keep it set at a level 2 and use PAS 2 or 3. Okay, sometimes 4 when I'm in a hurry, so an average speed on bike trails of 17-18 mph at PAS 3. I live in Florida and can ride on sidewalks here where there are no bike paths, so more braking for sure than on a bike path.

I'm no engineer, and could be way off on my assessment based on some unknown, scientific reasoning or engineering calculation, but I don't think so. I can only go with common sense and personal experience. Maybe I'm just stubborn at 70 years old, but check out these photos of the pads I replaced on the rear of the bike at 385 miles:
Lip at top of pads.jpg




Pads forming gap.jpg

I
 
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How the heck am I suppose to remove the rotors?
You may not have to.....I have a XP 2.0......once in awhile.....the brakes squeek......I just lift the wheel off the ground....spin it and clean the rotors with alcohol and a clean rag. The noice goes away for many miles.....if it comes back.....I just repeat the process. Good luck.
 
I checked my XP3.0 and have the same issue with the rear pads not contacting the rotor at the outer edge of the pad. I determined the rear wheel was not mounted all the way up in the drop out. I loosed the axle nuts on both sides and the small safety brackets which allowed the rear wheel to move up in the frame and the rotor to move up into caliper. Then tighten the rotor side axle nut first before the drive side. Then reposition the caliper bracket down as far as possible before tightening the caliper. The pad contact is very close to 100%. If a lip does develop on the pad it will be very thin and could be removed once it starts to interfere with braking.
The front brake pad to rotor contact looks much better. It however may have a similar slight issue also. Something to keep an eye on.
 
I checked my XP3.0 and have the same issue with the rear pads not contacting the rotor at the outer edge of the pad. I determined the rear wheel was not mounted all the way up in the drop out. I loosed the axle nuts on both sides and the small safety brackets which allowed the rear wheel to move up in the frame and the rotor to move up into caliper. Then tighten the rotor side axle nut first before the drive side. Then reposition the caliper bracket down as far as possible before tightening the caliper. The pad contact is very close to 100%. If a lip does develop on the pad it will be very thin and could be removed once it starts to interfere with braking.
The front brake pad to rotor contact looks much better. It however may have a similar slight issue also. Something to keep an eye on.
Thank you. I will check that out. Good call.
 
If the brakes are mismatched as described above, assuming there is not some confounding factor such as not seating the axle properly, there's only one real way to fix it while still keeping most of the same parts. You aren't going to like this given the stated desire to preserve a warranty. I personally wouldn't be concerned about warranty preservation when it comes to a basic defect like mismatched caliper-to-rotor facing. Braking ability is clearly compromised.

The fix revolves around changing the brake caliper adapter to something that is shorter than what is on now. It might seem that caliper adapters are universal in size, but they are not. For example, Avid brake mounting kits assume the use of Avid semi-hemispherical washers to do the final positioning of the caliper so its just right in relation to the rotor.


So to make up for the washer height, the adapters by design are a bit shorter than say a Magura adapter, where that adapter is meant to bolt directly to the Magura caliper with nothing in between caliper and adapter. So how do you take advantage of this? Get an off-brand adapter like the Avid described above and shim it until it fits right. Needless to say you also need longer bolts into the adapter (go longer than the added washer space to ensure deep thread seating in the adapter).

What if your adapters already use these washers? Well, you're looking at going to the full next size down in brake adapter and shim it up. Probably by rather a lot. If this sort of thing is new to you, thats probably more than you want to try :). However if you look at the shims provided in that kit I linked, you'll see its not exactly a total DIY concept as Avid makes kits designed specifically to facilitate such an effort.
 
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Thank you for this information. I was thinking somebody must manufacture an adjustable system as you describe - I just wasn't finding it. Another member, Aircooled, says he found his axle not seated properly, giving him the same problem. You mention that too. So I shall go there first and see if that isn't the problem. It also explains why Lectric was wanting me to ship them my bike, but I thought that to be a bit extreme. They could just assign someone to read all the forum posts on this issue and figure it out at the factory, yeah? They also never suggested either of the two probable solutions posted here. Regardless, the new brake pads have been excellent compared to the factory pads - quiet and smooth stopping power. I haven't had to readjust them yet at 150 miles. Now I will get them aligned properly to the rotor and, if successful, that should eliminate the much complained about brake problem with this bike.
 
One last thing: if changing pads or rotors, make sure you bed the brakes. I describe the procedure in the link below, but I don't get too deep into the whys and wherefores. Thats is because there is plenty of material already out there on the internet explaining the benefits in detail, so if you are so inclined a little googling will get you detailed explanations.


BTW those Origin8 brakes are not particularly noteworthy. Also that pad misalignment you picture is pretty severe. The problem is well-illustrated by your pic of what happens to the sandwich when they are compressed together. That needs fixing sooner not later. At the least, change the pads.
 
Thank you. I will check that out. Good call.
Good news! I just received an email from Drew at Lectric Bikes:

"Within the next 30-45 days, we will send a link to current XP 3.0 riders where they can request a hydraulic brake kit for themselves, and the cost of the kit will be on us! We will also provide installation instructions. You are welcome to take it to a bike shop for an installation, however, we are unable to cover third-party installation costs.

"We are excited to be able to upgrade your 3.0 in this way! Feel free to inquire about anything else, we are happy to help."
 
Good news! I just received an email from Drew at Lectric Bikes:

"Within the next 30-45 days, we will send a link to current XP 3.0 riders where they can request a hydraulic brake kit for themselves, and the cost of the kit will be on us! We will also provide installation instructions. You are welcome to take it to a bike shop for an installation, however, we are unable to cover third-party installation costs.

"We are excited to be able to upgrade your 3.0 in this way! Feel free to inquire about anything else, we are happy to help."
I got a very similar email from them. It’s going to be nice to have hydraulic brakes.
 
I think they're doing it because of all the brake complaints and since they have hydraulics on the trike, they might as well go ahead and do this. There should be fewer required mechanical adjustments with the hydraulic brakes, meaning fewer incidents resulting from user adjustment errors, in my opinion. Also, they will be offering some manner of free controller upgrade, maybe just software, that will give a smoother take-off (according to an email my wife received today).

By the way, I just received replacement pads at no cost from Lectric and they look exactly like the pads I bought on Amazon. The Amazon pads have been quiet and a vast improvement over the factory pads in stopping power (200 miles in). The metal bits in the pad matrix on these new pads are much smaller and more uniform, unlike the mishmash of different sized metal flakes in the factory pads.
 
FWIW, I think Lectric is doing the hydraulic brake upgrade thing more as a response to the recent lawsuit against Rad.
I couldn't agree more. I actually started a thread about this exact topic in another forum. This is about risk management, and the fallout of that Rad lawsuit - without regard to the crash particulars or which party prevails - will show us a move to incorporate hydraulic brakes as factory original equipment across the direct-to-consumer ebike channel.


I think the fact that Lectric is going back to earlier customers is very telling about the threat assessment on this subject. It is also a shot across the bow of their competitors, which is very much in Lectric's wheelhouse. That plus it also proofs them at least partially against legal liability from their existing customer base.
 
I couldn't agree more. I actually started a thread about this exact topic in another forum. This is about risk management, and the fallout of that Rad lawsuit - without regard to the crash particulars or which party prevails - will show us a move to incorporate hydraulic brakes as factory original equipment across the direct-to-consumer ebike channel.


I think the fact that Lectric is going back to earlier customers is very telling about the threat assessment on this subject. It is also a shot across the bow of their competitors, which is very much in Lectric's wheelhouse. That plus it also proofs them at least partially against legal liability from their existing customer base.
Also, it's The Right Thing to DO, which Lectric tends to do, in my experience. Must be privately-owned. ;-)
 
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