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How exactly is a dual pivot brake better than single pivot?

Is it the travel, mechanical advantage, or what?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

The main point of a dual pivot is the mechanical advantage. Since the individual pivot for each side of the brake is optimized for a greater lever length, you end up with a greater pressure of the pads against the rim.

Also, since the pivots are cleverly positioned (in my opinion), you end up with a compact, light and strong overall structure.

The downside would be tire clearance, which is not big problem on road bikes. On mountain bikes, V-brakes provide very good mechanical advantage with a very good clearance, but with a less compact structure.

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Another reason for this is that two-pivot varieties have an opportunity to recenter themselves better than single pivot. This reduces friction from one side dragging on the rim, and also contributes to why good road bikes that use them will frequently use the dual pivot calliper brakes.

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