Questions tagged [brakes]

Disc/rim/drum/coaster brakes; braking technique, maintaining brakes, anything else about stopping a bike.

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43
votes
6answers
71k views

How do I make my rim brakes stop squealing?

My rear rim brakes are squeaking loudly. I don't know what the problem is, but I am sure it has nothing to do with rain because it happens all the time even if it is dry. Anybody have an idea what ...
12
votes
2answers
85k views

How do I know whether my bike can use disk brakes?

I have a Gary Fisher bike (wahoo I believe). I think it's considered the entry level Fisher mountain bike. Could I put on disc brakes as opposed to using the standard brakes on this bike? Standard ...
69
votes
19answers
78k views

Do skilled cyclists really "use the front brake alone probably 95% of the time"?

Sheldon Brown's Braking and Turning Your Bicycle page states that: Skilled cyclists use the front brake alone probably 95% of the time and "Generally I advise against using both brakes at the ...
49
votes
8answers
71k views

Why don't brakes come with 'Safety Levers' any more?

It used to be very common to see bikes with dual pull brake levers (if that's even the right name) as shown below. However now it seems almost impossible to find brakes like this. Even finding a ...
7
votes
2answers
12k views

Can I convert flat bar to drop bars on a hybrid bike

I'm fairly certain that the bars should change out quite easily; I'm more concerned about the shifters and brakes. Currently I have a hybrid 18 speed with cable disc brakes and Shimano Deore XT ...
0
votes
1answer
484 views

What is the mechanical advantage of mechanical rim brakes and levers?

I understand that the amount of hand force required for a given braking force depends on the mechanical advantage of the braking system, which in turn is a multiplication of the mechanical advantage ...
26
votes
1answer
113k views

What is the difference between I.S., post, and flat mount disc brake mounting standards?

What is the difference between "I.S." (international standard), "P.M." (post mount), and flat mount disc brake mounting standards? Does one have a clear advantage over the other and is there a ...
22
votes
5answers
6k views

What kinds of brake designs exist, and what are their general pros and cons?

Here are the ones I'm aware of: Center Pull Cantilever Slightly better braking than side pull brakes. No recentering problem. Relatively rare V-Brakes Cheap to produce. Similar in braking power to ...
21
votes
2answers
245k views

Converting bike from rim brakes to disc brakes

I just bought a used 2009 Kona Dew and it comes with regular rim brakes. I'm perfectly happy with them so far, but have been wondering if disc brakes would come handy when it rains. What is involved ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Convert a Cannondale SM1000 (about 1991 model) to disk brakes

I've got an older, about 1991, model Cannondale SM1000 mountain bike purchased new. Would it be worth it to convert to disk brakes and if so what would be the process?
18
votes
5answers
26k views

Fixing noisy V brakes

My V brakes make a lot of noise when I brake! I am annoyed by such noise, not to mention the pedestrians. My mechanic said that it will not make this noise after using it for couple of days, but it is ...
39
votes
15answers
50k views

When should I not use my front brake?

I have only been riding for a short time and I remember when I was a child there was a belief that if you used your front brakes going downhill that you would fly over your handlebars. However, my ...
17
votes
3answers
62k views

do I need to change my disc if the brake pads got oil on them

In trying to change the brake pads on my mountain bike, I managed to get oil on my new pads and empty out all the brake fluid, and consequently also get some oil on the disc. I took the bike to the ...
9
votes
1answer
25k views

What is the actual cable pull of brake levers?

I understand that there are 2 brake lever cable pull standards: Standard Pull Levers Long Pull Levers (for V-brakes and disc brakes) But what is the actual difference in pull? And specifically: what ...
44
votes
10answers
35k views

Why is the front brake lever on the right if you 'drive' on the left and vice-versa?

I live in the UK and I expect my front brake lever to be operated by my right hand. However, I recently went on a friend's bike that had the brakes 'back to front', which would be the 'right way round'...
7
votes
1answer
9k views

Replace Ultegra 6600 STI lever

I need to replace my Ultegra 6600 right hand shifter as the ratcheting system is gone. The rest of the groupset is all the same 6600 series. I am having a hard time sourcing just a right hand side ...
8
votes
2answers
16k views

Disc brake break-in?

Just got a bike with discs (BB7). The feel of the braking is so-so on the first ride (5km commute from LBS to home). I think the cable for the rear needs a little tightening. But even so, I don't ...
3
votes
1answer
7k views

Use of Shimano long-reach calipers with "New Super SLR" brake levers/shifters

So my bike has Shimano Tiagra ST-4600/4603 brifters (it's a triple) but is fitted with long-drop BR-R451 calipers. In theory, these should be incompatible because of the change in cable pull ratio, ...
3
votes
2answers
551 views

Problems with brake discs

I recently bought a new bike. It is a Scott bike with disc brakes. The bike went in for it's service and now it has problems braking. As soon as I pull the brake leavers the front brakes makes a loud ...
56
votes
18answers
56k views

What is the practical advantage of disk brakes over rim brakes?

Disk brakes are becomming more popular on bikes now, and I was just wondering what the advantage is of this type of brake over the older rim brakes.
13
votes
4answers
10k views

What is the recommended type of tire for riding on wet pavement?

I am commuting in rainy Seattle, and the rain has started. Right now I have Continental Gatorskin tires on my commuter, but yesterday I noticed I was braking to stop the wheels and skidding quite a ...
33
votes
8answers
25k views

Can your rims wear down from too much braking?

I have a question about rims based on information in another question. The person asking states that he doesn't want his rims wearing down. Is this really a problem? Assuming you don't wear the ...
25
votes
2answers
20k views

What does "modulate" mean when referring to brakes?

Often in a review of brakes, or an article talking about braking the author will use the term "modulate." E.g. "The brake modulates well" or "Modulate your front brake." What exactly does this term ...
25
votes
1answer
39k views

What is the difference between different types of disc brake pads

I've seen several different descriptors for disc brake pads: Metallic, Semi-Metallic, and Organic. What is the difference between these types of disc brake pads?
16
votes
6answers
9k views

How to build surge brakes on bike trailer?

There are a couple of pretty good answers in How to make a cargo trailer?. After looking at those, at the answer to What are the safety concerns of a high vs a low mount trailer hitch? and doing some ...
12
votes
4answers
8k views

Enhancing brake force with steel rims in wet conditions?

I currently own an old racing bike, that still has ripped steel rims and a side pull caliper brake. The braking power is acceptable when the street is dry, but as soon as it gets wet (even morning dew)...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Bedding In process for brakes

A few days ago, someone asked a question which touched upon the bedding-in process for their new disc brakes. Because the question did not have any answer already, I wrote one in which I said that ...
12
votes
2answers
8k views

Why are there metal shavings in my brake pads?

I have several brake pads on my cantilever brakes that have several small metal shavings embedded in the pad. Is this normal? What should I do about it?
12
votes
3answers
3k views

can only use right hand to brake reliably, due to disability - safer/possible to modify bike?

I'm new here and hoping someone might have thoughts on this - had a look and couldn't find an answer elsewhere! Apologies for the kind of long question, and if it's silly, but any thoughts would be ...
5
votes
5answers
9k views

Braking on a vintage road bike

I recently bought a vintage Gitane road bike. I understand that in the 70s and 80s they sold a lot of these road bikes with drop handle bars. Sometimes they came with the extra lever for an easier ...
5
votes
1answer
4k views

How do I get rid of the noise on my Hayes Stroker Trail brakes

I recently bought a new bike that came with Hayes Stroker Trail hydraulic brakes. From day one they were squeeky and not very grippy. I wrote it off to the burn in period that most disc brakes ...
2
votes
1answer
794 views

Disc brakes on leader doberman which has no tabs and adaptors

I have a leader doberman with a front disc brake that I want to install on the rear. I know that it hasn't a rear disc brake tab, but I have found an adaptor for the caliper (http://www.ebay.com/itm/...
97
votes
16answers
29k views

Why are disc brakes rare on road bikes? (circa 2010) [closed]

Window shopping for road bikes, I can't see many that have disc brakes. What are the reasons for this?
22
votes
4answers
38k views

How to tighten a brake?

This is probably a really basic question but I'm confused by the whole brake mechanism so... My left (front wheel) brake has to be pulled in really far before it actually starts to brake (I guess ...
24
votes
3answers
6k views

How do I prevent disk brakes from squeaking in the rain?

When I got my new bike with disk brakes, I thought that they would perform much better in the rain. While this is true, they still squeak quite loud in wet conditions, which is quite annoying. Is ...
21
votes
3answers
148k views

How do I stop my rim brakes making a squeaking/squealing sound?

I bought a Schwinn Frontier Sport few months ago and started riding happily. After a few weeks my front rim brakes started creaking. It's so annoying in public places. My rear brake doesn't produce ...
19
votes
8answers
51k views

Why do my disc brakes squeal when wet?

Picture the scene... It's just been raining and you are getting ready to commute home after work, you cycle out on to the tarmac, the scent of fresh rain on hot tarmac fills your nostrils, you notice ...
49
votes
14answers
28k views

Safest way to slow down a bike quickly if both sets of brakes fail

This may sound like a crazy question, however today in the wet my rear brakes decided to stop working effectively. It has been pouring rain here which makes the problem more apparent. I managed to ...
36
votes
10answers
91k views

Why don't road bikes use v-brakes?

In my experience, linear pull brakes (v-brakes) have more stopping power than other types of cantilever brakes (let the flames start ;). Modern road bikes always come fitted with dual pivot brakes. ...
11
votes
3answers
26k views

Do cyclocross/interrupter/touring brake levers reduce brake performance?

I have bullhorn bars, with a Tektro cyclocross lever and a TT style bar end lever as well, operating rim brakes. The calipers are Tektro dual pivot. The pads are cartridge style pads (I don't have the ...
16
votes
2answers
7k views

Hydraulic Disc Brakes Maintenance

I have Hayes Nine hydraulic disc brakes on my mountain bike. I have recently replaced the brake pads and after that it seems that the pads are almost touching the rotor. How can I adjust it? I have ...
10
votes
3answers
5k views

Do aluminum rims provide better braking than steel ones when wet?

When I upgraded the brakes on my bicycle recently, the shop asked if I wanted to also switch from my (chromed) steel rims to aluminum rims, saying the aluminum rims would provide better braking power. ...
6
votes
7answers
7k views

Why do my brakes squeak? Do I have an incorrect distance between brake pads and rims?

My brakes were working normally until I adjust them today. I thought the brake pads were too close to the rims so I increase the distance a bit. Now every time I brake, they make horrible squeaking ...
7
votes
2answers
4k views

Will a road brake lever work with a v-brake?

I'm planning on changing my commuter handlebar to a drop handlebar. As the diameters are different, I need to know if the new brake lever will work with the existing v-brakes. (My intention is to ...
7
votes
1answer
7k views

Does having machined brake surface on rims matter?

I'm looking at getting a wheelset with disc hubs and rim brakes to run on my disc and non-disc cross bikes. There are stock wheels that have velocity a23 rims, which are a poupular rim brake ...
6
votes
1answer
6k views

How do I setup these brakes?

I recently bought a bike from bikes direct (The kilo TT stripper). Its a fixed gear bike that came with a front and rear brake. I was able to setup everything but the brakes. The brakes are: Front/...
5
votes
4answers
3k views

Dia Compe Brakes for 1991 Bridgestone RB-T

I have a 1991 Bridgestone RB-T. This bike has passed through many hands so much of the stock parts are gone. The original Dia Compe XCE brake arms have been replaced by Dimension canti arms. My ...
1
vote
3answers
14k views

How to convert a multi-speed bike to single-speed with coaster brake?

Now I don't want to take all the credit for this bike, but I'm pretty sure Trek must've lovingly had me in mind when they made this. I mean come on. This bike is awesome. Buying their beach cruiser ...
0
votes
4answers
464 views

How to decelerate effectively with a rear brake?

My front brake is not operational and it will be a couple of days before the replacement Shimano Deore arrives. There are probably other use cases for braking with a rear brake. For example, pad ...
19
votes
10answers
7k views

How can I safely go downhill on an antique penny-farthing bike?

I recently picked up a vintage penny-farthing (high wheeler) at the flea market and, after restoration, adopted it as my normal mode of transportation. It works well for the most part, but going ...