Center Lock vs 6 Bolt: Which Disc Brake System Should You Choose

When it comes to bicycles, safety is paramount. To ensure your safety as a cyclist, the disc brakes on your bike are essential for reliable, versatile braking. There are two main disc brake systems to choose from, center lock and six bolt.

The center lock system, also referred to as direct mount, uses a splined interface between the hub and disc rotor. You will require an adapter when fitting center lock rotors on a six bolt hub. It requires less parts to operate and is easier to install compared to the six bolt system. Furthermore, the design allows you to install the rotor without having to perfectly align the rotor and hub. Installation requires an open-ended wrench and lockring, making it less time intensive than the six bolt system.

However, there are some drawbacks to the center lock system. The rotors can be removed more easily compared to the six bolt system, so the risk of theft may be increased. In addition to this, it is not as compatible with certain hubs and frames as its six bolt counterpart, which may be difficult to fit.

The six bolt system has been used on bikes for many years. A series of six tiny threaded bolts are used to secure the disc rotor to the hub. The gap between the rotor and hub must be perfectly aligned to ensure proper braking performance.

There are some advantages of using six bolt disc brakes. Firstly, it is more secure and your discs shouldn’t get stolen as easily as they can with the center lock system. Secondly, it can fit certain types of hubs and frames that the center lock system cannot. The disadvantage of using the six bolt system is that installation tends to be more time consuming because you must precisely align the rotor and hub without a margin of error. It also requires an extra set of tools to tighten and loosen the bolts.

Overall, your choice between center lock and six bolt disc brake systems depends on your specific needs. If you are looking for speed and convenience, then the center lock system may be the best choice. If security and compatibility are more important to you, then the six bolt system would be a better choice. Both systems are effective at providing you with quick, reliable braking, so review your needs and choose the one that best suits you.

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