High carbon iron is the best and it does show surface rust very quickly.You can get different grades of SS (like with kitchen knives)
I thought most current bikes used SS. Although my Yam XTR doesn't cause I get rust deposit inside the drilled vent holes.
You say step backwards compared to? cast iron? carbon?
I've only been riding for 7 years so I don't know what the common material used was before that
I wouldn't be surprised if the VFR has SS discs. My brother's '02 has terrible brakes.It is what I was told by my Honda mechanic on my previous VFR-03 & current RR8
And to add to what they say, I don't experience any rusting on the discs.
I don't know about the exact content of the metal but you add different alloys to the metal to turn it into stainless.
I guess you could add carbon to the mix to improve friction but slightly increase wear.
A while ago I read a mag article about pads & discs when I was needing new once. It said most modern bikes use SS discs, the chrome content unfortunately reduces friction!
You are probably referring to ductile cast iron discs with the typical surface rust. They are better for performance/ track use but rust & probably heavier
I figure bikes became "modern" in the mid-eighties when Suzuki invented aluminium frames. I guess it could be claimed they stepped up again in the late nineties when they started injecting them but I don't consider that to have been a huge leap forward..No, like I mentioned the article said MOST modern bike. It certainly didn't list discs fitted to all the bikes since 1980's.
Also your idea of modern may be different to theirs or mine.
I would consider less than 10 years old, modern but accept that it is all relative as there are no specific rule for classification!
For me, the brakes on the VFR were excellent specially the linked system.
As to find out exactly what metal is used on each modern sport bike, you'll have to do the search!
Slightly off the topic have you had any running experience with DOT 4, 5 & 5.1. I know the basic characteristics: boiling temperature, moisture absorption and not mixing 5 with 4 & 5.1. I also heard from somebody who used 5 in his racing car who said it was crap (long time ago so can't remember the details)
Are your discs magnetic?As I mentioned earlier, the Honda mechanic told me what the disc material was and the fact that my discs don't rust add to this what the mag article wrote. I am not Sherlock Holmes but hey that is what I figured out.
If you do find out this is not the case for RR8, I would be interested to know.
I also mentioned before, you get different grade of SS for different application.
Stainless steels are often very poor magnetically, especially when compared to iron.Sot sure it this was a joke
But don't be surprised to see electro magnetic braking system on motorbikes in the future (unless they already exist)
My point about cast iron was not about their performance but their rusting.
I did say they were better in terms of performance.
By changing the content of what goes in SS you can change their properties, therefore application.
As an example, cooking knives, you get surgical grade which are used to make cheap one with sharp edges which last a long time. Once they go blunt it is very difficult to sharpen them again
Then you get the high carbon SS knives, much more expensive, looses their edge quicker but can easily be sharpened; most pros use these
Marine grade SS are the most corrosion resistant grade.
But SS can also be brittle depending on its constituant