Following on from this review of the Camel ADV “The Fix” rear brake pedal replacement, which very effectively eliminates the “mushy” rear brake on the Tenere 700 that so many experience, I ordered two new sets of brake pads which I believe will bring both brakes into line with what I’d expect on a bike of this size and weight. After a fair bit of research my choice of pads were the following:
Installing the pads is a simple 5 minute per set job that involves removing a couple of cotter pins, sliding out a holding pin, replacing the pads and then doing everything again in reverse. There are several instruction videos you can watch if you need help and this one covers both the front and rear change:
Once done it was time to take the bike for a good test ride so I headed from East Cowes to Brading via The Downs (Isle of Wight). Immediately I noticed a far better bite to the rear brake. The stock pads had 2600 miles on them (circa 4200 KMs) so whilst there was some wear to them, they should have had plenty of life left, yet with the stock setup they were always fairly lifeless and required a lot of pressure to engage. The Gilfer pads, whilst not yet run in, were already significantly better and only a light touch of the pedal was required to slow the bike from 50mph. The hill from The Downs into Brading has a steep gradient and here was going to be a good test for both brakes. A medium pressure applied to the rear brake again slowed the bike well but the front brake was the revelation here. It now required a very light touch to engage the pads and the braking was far more smooth and controlled. With the stock pads in place I always found the front brake a tad “snatchy”; too light a touch and little would happen but a little more pressure would almost lock the front wheel. No such behaviour was noted with the Gilfer pads and they brought the bike to quick but smooth stop. On the way back I continually tested both front and rear brakes with the same results.
The Camel ADV rear brake pedal replacement is not yet quite adjusted to where I need it to be but that will have to wait until Tuesday when the new stock height pedals arrive. However, even with the current adjustment it’s easy to conclude that the Gilfer pads are a significant improvement over the stock pads and at circa £45 for two sets of fronts and one set of rears, it’s definitely an upgrade I’d recommend to anyone, whether you’re running the stock rear pedal or “The Fix”.