QUESTION: Can you use Shimano rotors with SRAM disc brakes? I have hydraulic Force brakes on my road bike and I noticed that the Shimano rotors I was considering seem to cost a little less.
Is it like tires where you can use whatever tire brand you want on a wheel? Or is it like derailleurs, where you have to use a specific cassette or chain to match the derailleur? I don’t want to waste my money buying rotors that won’t work. – Ronny F
RBR REPLIES: Yes, it’s ok to use Shimano rotors with a SRAM brake set up. In fact, I’m using Shimano GRX rotors with my own Force brakes right now because at the time I needed some rotors, those were the ones available.
One important thing to look for is to make sure that the rotor size matches your brakes. Most road and gravel bikes are using 160mm rotors these days, but a recent road bike I had came with smaller 140mm rotors in the back and larger 160mm rotors in the front. (Which gave me plenty of stopping power and maybe saved a little bit of weight.)
After I sold off that bike, I standardized on only 160mm rotors on the front and back wheels. That makes it easy to swap out wheels between my road bike and my gravel bike if I want to run road wheels on the gravel bike.
So if your bike uses 160mm rotors, it’s ok to use Shimano rotors or SRAM rotors, or even some other brand like TRP.
Another tip is to make sure that you buy the correct style of rotors that are Centerlock or 6 bolt, which depends on the wheels you are installing the rotors on. All my wheels are Centerlock at this point, which makes it very easy to install or remove a rotor or swap them between wheels if I needed to.