Founded in 1969, Goodridge started its business importing aircraft steel braided hose for the UK motor sport market. Continued success has seen this small establishment expanding into various parts of Europe, United States and Asia speedily in the last couple of years. Currently they have their own manufacturing base with original equipment manufacturing capabilities in specialist areas of large-scale automotive products and is also a purveyor of brake lines to F1 teams.
Most riders do not give much thought about upgrading their disc brakes. The only items they probably will ever change are the pads and the rotor when the brakes start losing power or when they start producing irritating noises.
The review team decided to check out the hype over the Goodridge brake lines distributed locally through Eclipse Sports. We want to know how much difference a set of good brake lines can make to a set of hydraulic brakes. At $150* per set without installation, the cables are definitely an expensive upgrade for any disc brake system. The brake lines come in standard length for the front or the rear brakes, with a choice of clear, black, red or blue coating. You need to specify the brakes you are using, as they come with various brake specific fittings.
Goodridge brake lines are constructed with a PTFE inner and a stainless steel overbraid, wrapped under a thin layer of plastic coating. The advantages of having a stainless steel line over plastic ones are its greater flexibility and durability. You can tie the Goodridge line into a knot as tight as you possibly can and it will not leave a crease when you straighten it out. Try doing that to plastics.
As soon as we got it set up, everyone was eager to throw our legs over the bike. The first thing that astounded us was the positive and solid feel on the lever. Gone were the mushy feelings on the levers when plastic lines were used. Plastic lines expand when you keep pulling after the pads touch the rotor; stainless steel doesn’t. This translated to rock solid feel on the lever when it reaches the end of its stroke.
When riding, the advantages of the lines are even more apparent. Both modulation and braking power improved tremendously. Modulation felt more linear and predictable with the Goodridge lines. We had a better sense of braking control throughout the ride. Improvement in braking power made halting from cruising speed to a complete stop with a single finger as effortless as it can be. With the new brake lines, our Shimano XT (4 pods) and XTR disc brakes were reborn.
Should I get it?
The team agreed that the Goodridge lines are an expensive upgrade for any hydraulic system and it definitely does not fit into the value for money category. Nonetheless, we will still strongly recommend this to anyone who is constantly searching for the “perfect” disc brakes. Rather then splashing out a few hundred on a new brake set every time, you will be surprise by the difference a set of Goodridge brake lines can do to your current hydraulic system. The brake lines will make your brakes feel better than new!
* We apologise for the printing error on the price. The hose are retailing for $165 to $175 depending on models and not $150 as stated. Working fast got its disadvantages.