Their name might not grab your attention but BBB’s Techstop pads are certainly wolves in sheep’s clothing when it comes to stopping lightweight road bikes on the proverbial sixpence, and they’re better suited to the rigours of winter than most thanks to medium compounds and unique design.
Techstops come in a choice of flavour ours were the Triple compound version compatible with SRAM and Shimano pattern callipers or we presume anything else that isn't Campagnolo - there's also a Campag version for a quid less - both types are available in either black or a triple compound – which we've got. The Tech Stop's relatively long profiles transformed the performance of 20- year old Campagnolo single pivots, which is great news for older training bikes. Slotting straight aboard contemporary mid-range Miche dual pivots, the super slimline shoes demanded slight adjustment of the inner wires to get the pads running a hair’s breadth from the rims. However, this is a minor inconvenience remarkably simple toe-in and finer adjustment without needing to using sections of folded cardboard more than compensate.
Casting an eye over their tricolour livery you’d be forgiven for thinking these were ultra sophisticated formula compounds but refreshingly BBB say this is purely cosmetic. Softer compounds can lack the deliciously sharp feel of their firmer counterparts but deliver proportionally more power whether trickling through town or thundering full pelt over greasy winter roads. Water channelling is more aggressive than most, yet curiously less prone to clogging with rim chewing abrasives-despite filthy sidewalls.
200 wet winter miles haven’t made much impression upon pad depth so the Techstops should prove long lived unless you’re a particularly heavy rider in hillier parts of the country. 20 quid for a complete set doesn’t have me jumping for joy but it’s certainly competitive and while undeniably good replacements for most callipers, improved performance is most notable on older, high end single pivot brakes.
Sound replacement pads for most calliper brakes, particularly older single pivots.
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Make and model: BBB Tech Stop Pads
Size tested: n/a
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
The techstop are replacement performance brake pads compatible with SRAM and Shimano pattern callipers, there is also a Campag alternative (although our non Campag pads worked fine with old Campagnolo single pivot brakes too).
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Soft, slender compounds with aggressive water channeling, tricolour design suggests something ultra sophisticated but refreshingly, on the packaging BBB advise this is purely cosmetic. Mounting hardware makes for easy and precise toe-in.
Looks promising for a softer compound.
40g (set of four)
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
The Techstop are surprisingly efficient all weather pads with long slender profiles providing dependable, silent stopping without collecting grit, dung or other sidewall chewing contaminant-even on filthy rural roads. Set up and toe in couldn't be simpler but allow for some cable adjustment. Wear rates seem good but this is likely to be influenced by riding style, rider weight and terrain.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Good performance, ease of adjustment.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Age: 36 Height: 1m 81 Weight: 70 kilos
I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)