Magura Marta SL Magnesium Review

Brakes Pro Reviews

Reviewed by Brian Mullin aka Gram and Pastajet

I have been using Magura Marta SL brakes for many years, and had always been satisfied with the brakes, but I always wanted a tad more power and modulation. Magura revamped the Marta line in 2009, and then sweetened the pot with a lighter version using forged magnesium. The new brakes have met my expectations and then some!

Magura Marta SL Magnesium

Magura updated the Marta lineup with some new innovations for 2009. The upgrades include a redesigned caliper and reservoir body, a better lever pivot, and the use of the larger Louise pads. The new reservoir body contains a new bleeding system, that is drastically easier to use.

Which brings us to the Mags, their latest tweak on the Marta SL. The Mags come with a titanium hardware, a special paint job (white/red), a magnesium reservoir body and an aluminum caliper. The rotors are sold separately in 160, 180 and 203 sizes in either the default SL Wavy, Drilled SL or Venti rotors.

Magura were originally going to have a full magnesium set, but due to some tooling issues they have stuck with an aluminum caliper, so the weight wasn’t quite at their projected project weight. The weight weenie crowd not surprisingly, was up in arms over the lack of a full magnesium brake for Magura’s lightweight flagship and benchmark model. Hopefully, they can overcome the issues and release a magnesium caliper sometime soon.

I love the smell of napalm in the morning…Smelled like…victory.

Magnesium 101
Magnesium is a chemical element with the symbol Mg, and atomic number 12. It is a fairly strong, silvery-white, light-weight metal, and was first produced in England by Sir Humphry Davy in 1808. The name originates from the Greek word for a district in Thessaly called Magnesia.

With a density of only two thirds of aluminum, it has countless applications in cases where weight reducing is important. It tarnishes slightly when exposed to air, and is protected from air and water by a thin layer of oxide, which is fairly impermeable and hard to remove. Magnesium is a highly flammable metal, but while it is easy to ignite when powdered or shaved into thin strips, it is difficult to ignite en masse or bulk. Burning or molten magnesium metal reacts violently with water, since it creates hydrogen gas, so if your brakes spontaneous combust throw sand on them!

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About the author: Brian Mullin

Brian likes to push the limits in all the sports he obsesses in, whether it's mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, skiing, or sport climbing. He takes those same strengths and a good dose of insanity to his reviewing and writing on mountain biking products, creating technical, in-depth articles. Whenever he's not on the bike, he might be found watching MotoGP racing, otherwise look for him out on the trail.

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