Dr Matt Miller, founder of BrakeAce, has announced that he is now shipping his PF2 Mountain Bike Brake Sensors to customers following a successful Kickstarter Campaign. The BrakeAce PF2 is essentially telemetry for braking; it collects data from strain gauges measuring braking events at each caliper mount, combining it with location information, firmware, wireless protocols and apps to deliver insights on how a rider can descend faster by changing when and where they are braking at specific locations on a trail.
If you’ve ever received any mountain biking coaching, it is likely you’ve been told that corner exit speed is far more important than corner entry speed. Get your braking done early, set up wide, then rail through the turn. We all know it intuitively, but forcing actual application of that knowledge in the heat of the moment, on the trail… well, it’s a lot easier said than done. BrakeAce is looking to give you data to support that, by showing you exactly where on the trail you could be braking more effectively in order to get to the bottom faster.
The brake sensors themselves are strain gauges, built into an over-sized post mount that sits between your frame and the caliper. Indeed, you will need to up-size your rotor by 20mm to add the sensor. There are two versions: the BrakeAce PF2 TR for 160/180mm PM frames/forks, to be run with a 180mm or 200mm rotor, respectively, and there is a BrakeAce PF2 DH that fits 200/203mm PM frames/forks to be used with a 220mm or a 223mm rotor, respectively.
The BrakeAce PF2 Sensor strain gauges measure braking torque at a frequency of 1000 times per second. The braking is processed post-run, with each braking event categorized as Stabs, Brake Checks, Critical, Modulated, Heavy, or Long, etc. The exact location of each braking event is also logged, allowing the BrakeAce App to build up a comprehensive picture of how a rider is controlling their speed down a specific descent.
Using the data amassed, the BrakeAce App then pulls out three actionable insights, or “Key Opportunities”, highlighting locations where braking earlier or later could reduce your overall time, or where you are brake checking unnecessarily. The goal is to help the rider “brake smarter, ride faster and perform better on any trail”. As the rider improves, taking those learning points on board, the App will begin to pull out more Key Opportunities to help you find seconds elsewhere.
“The BrakeAce PF2 is the tool we always wanted. It didn’t exist, so we built it ourselves. It’s like the power meters every cyclist uses, except it’s for mountain bikers – where braking is everything. We have an epic team and we’re stoked to get these out in the wild.” – Matt Miller, BrakeAce Founder.
“Considering all the pieces needed to make the PF2 a reality, it’s no surprise it hasn’t been done before. We’ve combined sensors, firmware, GPS, wireless protocols, mobile & web apps, and a heap of scientific research. But the fact that you as a rider simply see how and where you can improve on the trail you just finished, makes it all worth it.” – Rohan Martin, BrakeAce CTO.
Pricing & Availability
BrakeAce PF2 Sensors are made in Rotorua, New Zealand. Pre-order pricing is $1,199 USD for a set of two sensors. Orders for a limited batch at that price are now open on the BrakeAce website, with shipping due in June 2023. When the pre-order batch is sold out, pricing will go up to $1,599 for the set. There is a free analysis app, but a paid-for Pro version is coming this year.