I have sturmey archer xfdd and xrd5. Which brake lever are suitable for these and drop handle bars. The cable is road type with a barrel rather than a nipple.

3 Answers 3


I can not find anything suggesting that these components require special parts, so it looks like any road bike brake lever should work well.

If you are replacing the shifter as well, then you should be sure to buy and indexed 5 speed shifter. It will be difficult to find a 5 speed brake lever / shifter combo, as most road bikes have many more gears.

  • The brake cable for road and mtb shifters is different.road has a barrelhunp. Fff shaped plug and
    – Dave
    Aug 18, 2013 at 11:13
  • True. If you do not want to replace the cable, then be sure to by road bike levers. But cables are not very expensive, and often come with the levers, so this probably won't be a problem. Then end of the cable that goes to the brake is the same regardless.
    – superdesk
    Aug 18, 2013 at 12:51
  • Are road bike levers handlebar fittings a smaller diameter than the breaker lever fittings for drop bars?
    – Dave
    Aug 18, 2013 at 19:32
  • 1
    Road bikes typically have drop handle bars, mountain bikes and hybrids usually have straight bars. Road bike brake levers are made to fit drop handlebars. It seems like you have a lot of questions, perhaps it would be easiest to take your project to a local bike shop, where you can talk face to face with a knowledgeable mechanic. Good luck, and feel free to upvote / accept my previous answer if it was helpful, or edit it otherwise.
    – superdesk
    Aug 19, 2013 at 1:19

You will probably want to try to use these with V-Brake compatible drop bar levers (long pull) as opposed to standard drop bar levers used with caliper or canti brakes (short pull). One product that comes to mind is a Tektro RL520.

I don't think it's advisable to use with an integrated brake/shifter setup (Shimano STI / SRAM Doubletap Shifters / Campagnolo Ergo Shifters). You may want to consider using bar end or downtube shifters, if you're not using an Internally Geared Hub.

  • There is a chance you could get away with drum brakes and STI levers by using a travel agent to change the cable pull ratio from the brake levers, but I'm not sure how viable that is. There doesn't seem to be a lot of information about that setup.
    – Benzo
    Sep 17, 2013 at 14:13
  • Isn't it possible to get brake levers with two settings for long and short pull, so you can try and see what works? Sep 17, 2013 at 14:26
  • Also, is it possible to run drum brakes with an internally geared hub? Sep 17, 2013 at 14:27
  • Yes, You can get IGH hubs to work with drum brakes, the poster wants to use a Sturmey Archer xrd5 which is a 5 speed Integrated Gear Hub with Drum Brake.
    – Benzo
    Sep 17, 2013 at 14:30
  • 1
    I know they have flat bar levers with adjustable pull ratio by moving the pivot point, but I'm not sure those exist on drop bar levers. I think some Shimano XTR brake levers had this feature, but I'm not sure of others. However, drum brakes typically require long pull levers.
    – Benzo
    Sep 17, 2013 at 14:32

Any drop bar lever that isn't designed for V-brakes (which is almost all of them).

Brakes levers come in two different mechanical advantages: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bicycle_brake#Brake_levers

The Sturmey Archer straight bar brake levers are short pull, so you want a short (standard) pull drop bar lever.

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