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John Appleby
August 1st 03, 07:31 PM
> 3) If trail riders don't use their front brakes much--as my friend,
> who was a sometime MTBer, seems to allege--why do I see so many
> front-wheel disk brakes?

If you think of your weight distribution on the bike, the rear wheel can
lock and you can carry on slowing down, whilst if the front wheel locks you
are over the bars.

As a result the front brake is far more effective a stopping mechanism
provided you don't lock it up. Obviously using both brakes at once is going
to stop you faster than using just one, though I suspect that in average MTB
riding use, you use mostly the front brake when braking hard. 70% sounds
realistic.

What is often the case on a MTB is that you use the rear brake for tactical
manoevres - for example to control your line of attack in a sharp corner.
Try doing that with the front brake and you will find that it slides
underneath you and you stack.

My suspicion is that either your friend hasn't ridden without a front brake,
or he doesn't ride very hard.

Regards,

John

Rick Onanian
August 1st 03, 07:40 PM
On 1 Aug 2003 10:35:16 -0700, Luigi de Guzman > wrote:
> 2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
> limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
> recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do

I suspect that the additional weight and weight distribution of
motorcycles makes the rear brake more useful. Additionally, it
could well be law in some states that motorcyclists must use both.

On top of all that, the nature of motorcycles AFAIK is that they
just don't require as much technique, though it certainly seems
that they _would_.

> 3) If trail riders don't use their front brakes much--as my friend,
> who was a sometime MTBer, seems to allege--why do I see so many
> front-wheel disk brakes?

How the hell does he get any braking accomplished on loose dirt
and mud and rocks and whatever else, using only the rear brake?

Aside from not being able to control his bike, he must tear up
the trails to no end.

I rarely use my rear brake; but my reflexes don't forget it in
a panic stop, either, whether on my road bike or my MTB.

> -Luigi
--
Rick Onanian

asqui
August 1st 03, 07:40 PM
Luigi de Guzman wrote:
[....]
> Both brakes should be applied at the same time when stopping. Even
> though the full braking potential of each wheel may not be required
> for normal, planned stops, it is important to develop the habit of
> using both brakes so that your reflexes will be ready to respond
> quickly and properly when an emergency situation occurs."
>
> they even have a diagram:
>
> <http://www.msf-usa.org/CourseReview/assets/RiderHandbook_27_1.gif>
[...]

Oh dear, not more of this nonsense.

Disclamer: The following discussion is carried out in the context of braking
on regular, clean, dry, level, road surface in a straight line, for the
purpose of decelerating from a given velocity to zero velocity in the
shortest distance possible.

Assuming the front tyre has enough traction to not skid before the
pitch-over point (reasonable assumption IMO). Maximal braking is at the
pitch-over point where your rear wheel is just about to leave the ground,
and cannot possibly contribute any significant amount of braking.

Hence at max. braking your rear brake contributes little more than a
skidding rear wheel, helping you on your way to losing control.

Dani

Eric Murray
August 1st 03, 09:05 PM
In article >,
Luigi de Guzman > wrote:

[front brake]

>Then, out of curiosity, I went to see what our fossil-fueled brothers
>on motorbikes have to say about braking. They say to brake with both
>at the same time:

[quote from MSF]

>1) Those big Flying Pigeons or Dutch roadsters, with only coaster
>brakes, were probably never intended to go very fast at all. My
>braking distance with only a rear coaster was scary, and my ability to
>brake depended largely on where my feet were in the pedal stroke.
>unnerving. [and I'm not very fast--the messengers and a lot of
>commuters, indeed, at at least one little girl can all beat me,
>speedwise]

Early motorcycles had only one brake, the rear, as well.


>2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
>limit to front-brake only braking?

Yes, the point at which you flip the bike over forwards.

> Why do the motorcycle guys
>recommend two-brake braking?

This is the MSF you are quoting. They are there to teach
beginning riders how to ride. Beginning riders, and riders who
learned improperly, are like your friend: they are afraid of
the front brake. There is even an old myth among motorcyclists
that the front brake will "flip you right over".
But on a motorcycle the front brake is
even more important than it is on a bicycle.

Motorcycle road racers often use only the front brake. Most of
those that use the rear use it more for suspension-related
reasons that are not applicable to bicycles and are too complicated
to explain.

A good motorcycle road racer will, at the point of maximum braking into
an approaching corner, have essentially zero weight on the rear.
Gary Nixon was famous for having his rear wheel in the air
on the approach to every corner.

>3) If trail riders don't use their front brakes much--as my friend,
>who was a sometime MTBer, seems to allege--why do I see so many
>front-wheel disk brakes?

Your friend is wrong. Front brakes are important for
off-road riding as well.


Eric

Paul Bielec
August 1st 03, 09:54 PM
I have a MTB.
When on pavement, I use both brakes but mostly the rear brake when on flat
and not going to fast. When going faster, the rear brake alone is not
enough. It will block because the weigt gets transfered to the front. Once
the rear is blocked, the rear brake is not that efficient anymore.
When on a Cross Country trail, you have to use both brakes when you go down.
The slopes are much stiffer than on the street or bike path. In addition,
the ground (soil, sand, mud, rocks etc) provides far less traction than
pavement. It is very easy to block your rear wheel in which case it makes
the rear brake even more inefficient than on pavement. So the trick is to
use the front brake as much as you can without blocking the front wheel
which would result in a nice dive over the handle bars with good chances of
having the bike landing on top of you.
Also, you'd try to transfer your weight to the rear and low by moving a
little behind your saddle.
MTB without front brake...never.
The disc brakes, in addition of having a better braking power, don't get
dirty as easy as the rims do. When you ride through several inches of mud
and water, it takes some time before the rims clean up.

Rick Onanian
August 1st 03, 10:07 PM
On Fri, 1 Aug 2003 16:54:59 -0400, Paul Bielec > wrote:
> The disc brakes, in addition of having a better braking power, don't get
> dirty as easy as the rims do. When you ride through several inches of mud
> and water, it takes some time before the rims clean up.

....and if your rims are the least bit out of true, or if your
brakes are adjusted very close, then you get terrible, horrible
scraping noises (while not applying the brake) which are so
loud they are not only embarassing but distracting too.

That's the main reason I'd like disc brakes for my MTB; I like
to keep my V brakes adjusted very close, but they sure get loud
when the rim gets muddy.

--
Rick Onanian

Todd Kuzma
August 1st 03, 11:05 PM
Luigi de Guzman wrote:

> 1) Those big Flying Pigeons or Dutch roadsters, with only coaster
> brakes,

Not sure about the Dutch, but the Flying Pigeons have no
coaster brakes. They use rod-operated brakes which are next
to useless.

Todd Kuzma

Eric Murray
August 1st 03, 11:12 PM
In article >,
Rick Onanian > wrote:
>On 1 Aug 2003 10:35:16 -0700, Luigi de Guzman > wrote:
>> 2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
>> limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
>> recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do
>
>I suspect that the additional weight and weight distribution of
>motorcycles makes the rear brake more useful.

It depends on the motorcycle. Long low Harleys put more
weight on the rear wheel than short sport bikes.

> Additionally, it
>could well be law in some states that motorcyclists must use both.

It could be, but it's not.
Most states do require front and rear brakes on bikes older
than a certain age, but there's no laws about using them.

>On top of all that, the nature of motorcycles AFAIK is that they
>just don't require as much technique, though it certainly seems
>that they _would_.

They require more skill in order to go fast.
A strong bicyclist can be fast even with poor technique..
whatever they lose on technical descents they make up into the wind
or up hills. With motorcycles, unless we are talking
straight line speed, it's all up to the skill of the rider.

Of course there are lots of motorcyclists who are the equivalent
of bicyclists who tootle along the bike path on a sunday.


Eric

Luigi de Guzman
August 1st 03, 11:28 PM
"asqui" > wrote in message >...
> Luigi de Guzman wrote:
> [....]
> > Both brakes should be applied at the same time when stopping. Even
> > though the full braking potential of each wheel may not be required
> > for normal, planned stops, it is important to develop the habit of
> > using both brakes so that your reflexes will be ready to respond
> > quickly and properly when an emergency situation occurs."
> >
> > they even have a diagram:
> >
> > <http://www.msf-usa.org/CourseReview/assets/RiderHandbook_27_1.gif>
> [...]
>
> Oh dear, not more of this nonsense.
>
> Disclamer: The following discussion is carried out in the context of braking
> on regular, clean, dry, level, road surface in a straight line, for the
> purpose of decelerating from a given velocity to zero velocity in the
> shortest distance possible.
>
> Assuming the front tyre has enough traction to not skid before the
> pitch-over point (reasonable assumption IMO). Maximal braking is at the
> pitch-over point where your rear wheel is just about to leave the ground,
> and cannot possibly contribute any significant amount of braking.
>
> Hence at max. braking your rear brake contributes little more than a
> skidding rear wheel, helping you on your way to losing control.
>
> Dani

I'm not disputing your statement. what I'm asking is--if front-wheel
only braking is maximal, why do the motorcycle guys say to use both
brakes? Especially considering their maximum speeds are much higher
than ours...

It looks like I'm going to have to perform experiments.

-Luigi

S. Anderson
August 2nd 03, 12:03 AM
"Luigi de Guzman" > wrote in message
om...
> "asqui" > wrote in message
>...
>
> I'm not disputing your statement. what I'm asking is--if front-wheel
> only braking is maximal, why do the motorcycle guys say to use both
> brakes? Especially considering their maximum speeds are much higher
> than ours...
>
> It looks like I'm going to have to perform experiments.
>
> -Luigi

I'm a motorcycle guy and I'm telling you I rarely use the rear brake. When
I'm braking heavily the rear wheel will actually be in the air part of the
time. The rear brake does very little at maximum braking, other than give
you something else to worry about. At more moderate stopping pressures the
rear brake can contribute to braking proportionate to the weight that's on
the rear tire. At the racetrack I never touch the rear brake. On the
street, I use it occasionally when it's wet out and to hold my bike still at
stop lights..that's about it.

Cheers,

Scott..

Mark Jones
August 2nd 03, 12:37 AM
"John Appleby" > wrote in message
...
> My suspicion is that either your friend hasn't ridden without a front
brake,
> or he doesn't ride very hard.
I don't ride all that hard and I still can't imagine
never using the front brake. I have tested stopping
with just one brake or the other and the front brake
always seems to do a better job. It is a lot easier
to lock up the back brake on most bikes I have owned.

David Kerber
August 2nd 03, 01:33 AM
In article >, luigi12081
@cox.net says...

....

> > Assuming the front tyre has enough traction to not skid before the
> > pitch-over point (reasonable assumption IMO). Maximal braking is at the
> > pitch-over point where your rear wheel is just about to leave the ground,
> > and cannot possibly contribute any significant amount of braking.
> >
> > Hence at max. braking your rear brake contributes little more than a
> > skidding rear wheel, helping you on your way to losing control.
> >
> > Dani
>
> I'm not disputing your statement. what I'm asking is--if front-wheel
> only braking is maximal, why do the motorcycle guys say to use both
> brakes? Especially considering their maximum speeds are much higher
> than ours...

Because at normal braking rates, you can get good stopping power from
the rears (on both bikes and motorcycles). It's only at near-maximal
braking that the rears become useless.

--
Dave Kerber
Fight spam: remove the ns_ from the return address before replying!

REAL programmers write self-modifying code.

E & V Willson
August 2nd 03, 04:20 AM
As one who has ridden both a bike and motorcycle, let me tell you that
only using the rear brake is near suicide. When the rear brake locks up,
the friction (stopping) force drops to near zero. What this means is that
there is less resistance from the locked (skidding) rear wheel than from
the rolling front wheel. As a consequence the rear wheel will come around
bringing you into a classic sideways skid. I know this unfortunate
experience. On the other hand if you brake hard on the front wheel, the
rear will just roll behind it, keeping in a straight line (assuming you do
not brake hard enough to endo).

If there was a choice between braking with the rear wheel or the front,
the front is the answer. The correct move is to first apply the front,
followed rapidly by the rear. Control the pressure on each brake so as to
prevent wheel lock, and stop in a straight line. Don't forget that a
locked wheel provides no gyroscopic force to keep you upright.
HTH.
Ernie

Luigi de Guzman wrote:

> So i've got to get to the library and return books. Somewhere in the
> middle of the City, in crowded stop-and-go traffic, my front brake
> cable snaps. apply my rear coaster brake (yuk). Limp to the library,
> return books, get bike to shop where a shopdude fits me up with new
> cable for GBP 1.80. great.
>
> I observe from my brief trip without a front brake that I am more or
> less utterly dependent on it. it's very hard for me to imagine riding
> without one. And yet when I got back to my room, I had an interesting
> AIM conversation with a friend fo mine from home:
>
> "you mean you use your *front* brake?" he said, somewhat incredulous.
> "I never use my front brake."
>
> I explain all the usual things--quote sheldon brown and my own
> experience, tell him to watch the beloki crash film again. but he
> persists. "Besides, all of my riding has been trail-riding, and I
> hardly ever use my front brake there."
>
> A statement I found very hard to believe.
>
> Then, out of curiosity, I went to see what our fossil-fueled brothers
> on motorbikes have to say about braking. They say to brake with both
> at the same time:
>
> "Use both brakes whenever slowing or stopping
>
> To stop, the hands and feet work together in a coordinated and smooth
> fashion. Squeeze the clutch and the front brake lever while pressing
> on the rear brake pedal and downshifting to first gear. The front
> brake provides around 70% of the stopping power for your motorcycle.
>
> Both brakes should be applied at the same time when stopping. Even
> though the full braking potential of each wheel may not be required
> for normal, planned stops, it is important to develop the habit of
> using both brakes so that your reflexes will be ready to respond
> quickly and properly when an emergency situation occurs."
>
> they even have a diagram:
>
> <http://www.msf-usa.org/CourseReview/assets/RiderHandbook_27_1.gif>
>
> In light of all of this I make a few observations & questions
>
> 1) Those big Flying Pigeons or Dutch roadsters, with only coaster
> brakes, were probably never intended to go very fast at all. My
> braking distance with only a rear coaster was scary, and my ability to
> brake depended largely on where my feet were in the pedal stroke.
> unnerving. [and I'm not very fast--the messengers and a lot of
> commuters, indeed, at at least one little girl can all beat me,
> speedwise]
>
> 2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
> limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
> recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do
> some tests when I go home, with the assistance of my science-minded
> younger brother]
>
> 3) If trail riders don't use their front brakes much--as my friend,
> who was a sometime MTBer, seems to allege--why do I see so many
> front-wheel disk brakes?
>
> -Luigi

ant
August 2nd 03, 04:48 AM
(Luigi de Guzman) wrote in message
> I had an interesting
> AIM conversation with a friend fo mine from home:
>
> "you mean you use your *front* brake?" he said, somewhat incredulous.
> "I never use my front brake."
>
> I explain all the usual things--quote sheldon brown and my own
> experience, tell him to watch the beloki crash film again. but he
> persists. "Besides, all of my riding has been trail-riding, and I
> hardly ever use my front brake there."

interesting.

im a new mtn biker, i suppose. i built myself a zero dollar
singlespeed out of discarded parts from the shop i work at, and an old
'tunturi' frame (which i hear is a maker of exercise bikes ;)

until now, i have been a road rider throguh and through. i ride mostly
fixed, and almost always without a rear brake. when with a rear brake,
i rarely use it, and even then mostly to give me something else to do
when im bored.

however, when i took up this new offroad hobby, i suddenly loved the
rear brake. i wouldnt go so far as to say i never use the front, but
it just doesnt seem appropraite a lot of the time. as fast as i am
going, on a rigid fork, with all the rocks and roots and mud, the
front seems to need all the traction and bounce it can get without me
trying to brake with it. ive skidded the front a few times, not an
experience i am used to for day to day road riding, and i do almost
all my speed modulation with the rear now. just seems like its cutting
it too close with the front.

then again, the few places ive been riding this beast around dont have
much in the way of straightaways, and the surface is loose. ymmv.

i guess my point is that even a person who is (hopefully) skilled in
the use of the front brake might see fit to lay on the rear for
offroad. then again, it might just be my inexperience. time will tell.

Phil, Squid-in-Training
August 2nd 03, 06:28 AM
> Motorcycle road racers often use only the front brake. Most of
> those that use the rear use it more for suspension-related
> reasons that are not applicable to bicycles and are too complicated
> to explain.

Not really. They use, as you say, the rear to lower the bike overall and
lower the CG. It's easy to visualize. Oftentimes (such as in MotoGP) it's
used AGAINST the throttle to control the amount of thrust.

--
Phil, Squid-in-Training

Werehatrack
August 2nd 03, 03:21 PM
On Sat, 02 Aug 2003 05:25:57 GMT, "Phil, Squid-in-Training" >
may have said:

>> If there was a choice between braking with the rear wheel or the front,
>> the front is the answer. The correct move is to first apply the front,
>> followed rapidly by the rear. Control the pressure on each brake so as to
>
>Other way around. Braking the rear causes the (full) suspension on a road
>moto to settle, lengthening the wheelbase and lowering the CG. Then apply
>the front.

This also initiates the forward load transfer, increasing the traction
of the front wheel so that when the front brake applies, it is less
likely to lock.

I've been unsurprised that the cheapo suspension fork on my latest
low-budget acquisition can be easily bottomed by brake application.

--
My email address is antispammed;
pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail.
Yes, I have a killfile. If I don't respond to something,
it's also possible that I'm busy.

Rick Onanian
August 2nd 03, 03:38 PM
On 1 Aug 2003 20:48:22 -0700, ant > wrote:
> it just doesnt seem appropraite a lot of the time. as fast as i am
> going, on a rigid fork, with all the rocks and roots and mud, the
> front seems to need all the traction and bounce it can get without me
> trying to brake with it. ive skidded the front a few times, not an
> experience i am used to for day to day road riding, and i do almost
> all my speed modulation with the rear now. just seems like its cutting
> it too close with the front.
>
> then again, the few places ive been riding this beast around dont have
> much in the way of straightaways, and the surface is loose. ymmv.

I used to ride rigid in the same type of terrain. Give the
front brake a chance, spend some time on it. It's still more
useful, even in those conditions.

--
Rick Onanian

g.daniels
August 2nd 03, 04:17 PM
well, we're still loooking for the lab/computer machine to quantify
the misc. ramblings on braking.
BUT i begin noticing a trend that suggest alotta guys haven't
developed a two hand braking capacity with enough ottolith to sense
polar moment inertia from rear and front and then COORDINATE MAX BRAKE
AND MAX BALANCE with all due respect to gary nixon's broken bones the
discussion proceeds without a bottle to hold it in?
don't take this as an insult or that I have superior reflexs that's
absolutely untrue. ima ground sloth. on the other hand I can heal and
toe and slide and snap gears up and down but that's practice.
so to suggest the discussion(without the lab model to quantify)
revolves hehehe around an unexperienced sensation. and that gary nixon
et al may not be forthcoming for one reason or another.
???????????<>?????????????????=T

Rick Onanian
August 2nd 03, 05:41 PM
On 2 Aug 2003 08:17:48 -0700, g.daniels > wrote:
> BUT i begin noticing a trend that suggest alotta guys haven't
> developed a two hand braking capacity with enough ottolith to sense

What's ottolith?

> polar moment inertia from rear and front and then COORDINATE MAX BRAKE
> AND MAX BALANCE with all due respect to gary nixon's broken bones the

I suspect that many people have, in fact, developed the
abilities described above; but many of the front-brake-only
people choose that method for personal reasons.

For me, it was a habit I got into as a child after wearing
through too many rear tires; I had a bike for which I
couldn't find a new tire, and so needed to use the front
brake only.

Since then, I was out of biking for awhile, then got into
mountain biking a few years back, and found that I feel
more efficient using mostly the front brake, and some rear
(sometimes just one or the other).

On my road bike, I generally only need the front brake,
though I've used the rear out of reflex in panic stops.

> discussion proceeds without a bottle to hold it in?

What does that mean? A bottle to hold the discussion?

> absolutely untrue. ima ground sloth. on the other hand I can heal and
> toe and slide and snap gears up and down but that's practice.

Sounds like you've been listening to too much Brooks & Dunn.
"Heel toe doe-see-doe come on baby let's go down"

> so to suggest the discussion(without the lab model to quantify)
> revolves hehehe around an unexperienced sensation. and that gary nixon

What?

> ???????????<>?????????????????=T

My feelings exactly. I was only able to interpret parts of
your message; for better readability, you could use the Enter
key, and near-correct punctuation; and you could use easier
language to understand.

...."Caddilac blackjack baby meet me outback, we're gonna boogie"...

--
Rick "country bumpkin / grammar nazi" Onanian

Mark Hickey
August 2nd 03, 07:21 PM
David Kerber > wrote:

says...

>> I'm not disputing your statement. what I'm asking is--if front-wheel
>> only braking is maximal, why do the motorcycle guys say to use both
>> brakes? Especially considering their maximum speeds are much higher
>> than ours...
>
>Because at normal braking rates, you can get good stopping power from
>the rears (on both bikes and motorcycles). It's only at near-maximal
>braking that the rears become useless.

The trouble is that a lot of people rely entirely on the rear brake
since that's "adequate". Then a car pulls out directly in front of
them and they have NO clue about how to stop fast. Either they use
less than maximal braking or they go over the bars.

Mark Hickey
Habanero Cycles
http://www.habcycles.com
Home of the $695 ti frame

Jonathan
August 2nd 03, 07:52 PM
> I ride with some new-er mtn riders. They are scared ****less about "using
> the front brake and going over the bars." Lent one of them my C-dale last
> night for his night ride and he as much as told me he didn't use the front
> brake 'cause he didn't want to crash. Idiot. Oh well.
>
> Mike
>
>

Don't judge them to harshly. I was scared ****less of the front brake for
years too, mostly because I started riding as a child on a cheap huffy bike
where the cheap caliper breaks barely worked properly on the cheap steel
rims. And the few times I tried the front break, i did nearly go over the
bars, and it scared me because I was riding on hard pavement in a townhouse
complex.

Using the front break *is* scary when you don't know what to expect or
proper techinque.

Eric S. Sande
August 2nd 03, 08:26 PM
>What's ottolith?

He means "otolith".

Look it up, you're on the internet.

:-)

--

_______________________ALL AMIGA IN MY MIND_______________________
------------------"Buddy Holly, the Texas Elvis"------------------

(Pete Cresswell)
August 2nd 03, 08:57 PM
RE/
>3) If trail riders don't use their front brakes much--as my friend,
>who was a sometime MTBer, seems to allege--why do I see so many
>front-wheel disk brakes?

My riding intensity and skill are somewhere between zero and pathetic.. a big
drop to me is a 10" curb or a flight of stairs.....I do most of my riding on
dirt, rocks, tree roots, and grass and I ride solo.

With nobody to emulate, maybe I'm going down the wrong path - but what I do to
learn braking technique seems logical to me.

What I do is to practice panic stops from various speeds on various surfaces.
All I do conciously is sort of throw the bike forward as I put my butt as far
back as fast as I can and simultaneously just brake as hard as I can with both
brakes.

Doing this over-and-over, I think I'm developing a feel for how much of each
brake works in varius situations.

It's kind of fun too...the feeling of hard accelleration without having to do
much work...
-----------------------
PeteCresswell

Zoot Katz
August 2nd 03, 09:32 PM
Sat, 02 Aug 2003 12:41:27 -0400, >,
Rick Onanian > wrote:

>
>What's ottolith?

misspelt
--
zk

David Kerber
August 3rd 03, 12:28 AM
In article >,
says...
> David Kerber > wrote:
>
> says...
>
> >> I'm not disputing your statement. what I'm asking is--if front-wheel
> >> only braking is maximal, why do the motorcycle guys say to use both
> >> brakes? Especially considering their maximum speeds are much higher
> >> than ours...
> >
> >Because at normal braking rates, you can get good stopping power from
> >the rears (on both bikes and motorcycles). It's only at near-maximal
> >braking that the rears become useless.
>
> The trouble is that a lot of people rely entirely on the rear brake
> since that's "adequate". Then a car pulls out directly in front of
> them and they have NO clue about how to stop fast. Either they use
> less than maximal braking or they go over the bars.

Definitely. Since I've been riding more, I have been consciously
forcing myself to use the fronts even for normal planned stops, to
ensure I have an instinctive feel for how much force I can put on them
when I need it.


--
Dave Kerber
Fight spam: remove the ns_ from the return address before replying!

REAL programmers write self-modifying code.

John Henderson
August 3rd 03, 12:55 AM
"Phil, Squid-in-Training" wrote:

> Other way around. Braking the rear causes the (full)
> suspension on a road moto to settle, lengthening the wheelbase
> and lowering the CG. Then apply the front.

Agreeing with you, I always hit the rear brake first with a
conventional bicycle too. If I require moderate to hard braking
force, I apply the front brake a fraction of a second later,
easing off the rear brake as I do so. In that time, the hard jab
on the rear brake has tested the adhesion, giving vital
information about how the front might behave. Any short rear
skid becomes easily felt, and generally causes me no loss of
stability.

The advantage is that this procedure soon becomes both quite
subtle and fully automatic, and I find the developed reflexes
quicker and more accurate than the mental pause otherwise
required to visually assess the surface before committing to
heavy front braking.

You can always hit a patch of slippery surface later in the
manoeuvre, so you've still got to keep your eyes open of course.

John

ant
August 3rd 03, 05:35 AM
"Mike S." <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<dfIWa.60541
> You just hit the nail on the head. Once you get to the point where you
> aren't too freaked out to use the front brake, you'll find that you can just
> about use it to go down anything AND have more control doing it. Going down
> steeps here in San Diego, I brake using the front, feathering it so that it
> is almost but not quite locking. The rear is barely useful since all my
> weight is forward.
>

'went for another short ride. as luck would have it, it seems that i
use the front more than i recalled. it was a natural reflex when i
actually had some serious stopping to do, and of course a standard
method for the straight and true bits. still a little hairy on the
rough downhills, thoguh, what with the rigid fork and roots and rocks
and all. i guess i remember using the rear more becuase this is the
first time ive ever really wanted it. and on some of those
aforementioned rocked, rooted, and rutted downhills, i really want it.
i suppose it is the same thing as when i am zipping down a sandy
descent on the fixie. front brake begins to get the wee-est bit iffy,
for once.

> You do a lot less damage to the trails when you aren't skidding your wheels
> around.

in my few offroad rides, (coutn 'em on my hands few) ive locked the
wheels only a handful of times. ill keep the trails nice for my kids,
'promise.

cheers

Phil, Squid-in-Training
August 3rd 03, 06:21 AM
> Agreeing with you, I always hit the rear brake first with a
> conventional bicycle too. If I require moderate to hard braking
> force, I apply the front brake a fraction of a second later,
> easing off the rear brake as I do so. In that time, the hard jab
> on the rear brake has tested the adhesion, giving vital
> information about how the front might behave. Any short rear
> skid becomes easily felt, and generally causes me no loss of
> stability.

Hmm... I never really thought about it the way you said it. Interesting to
note, however.

On my road (pedal-)bike I tend to use the rear exclusively for slow braking.
If I need to brake faster, or if something unexpected pops up in front of
me, I'll grab some of the front.

On the MTB at the trails, I'll brake with the front exclusively while
upright, going straight, and the rear mostly with a little of front while in
turns or technical stuff.

--
Phil, Squid-in-Training

Phil, Squid-in-Training
August 3rd 03, 06:24 AM
"g.daniels" > wrote in message
m...
> well, we're still loooking for the lab/computer machine to quantify
> the misc. ramblings on braking.
> BUT i begin noticing a trend that suggest alotta guys haven't
> developed a two hand braking capacity with enough ottolith to sense
> polar moment inertia from rear and front and then COORDINATE MAX BRAKE
> AND MAX BALANCE

Hey g.daniels... even though you're relatively illiterate, I agree very much
with you on this one. How many people (on pedal-bikes) can maintain their
rolling stoppies? Or simply have a stoppie where the wheel is a centimeter
off the ground?

Motorcycles are a lot heavier, have a lot more inertia, and therefore are
probably easier to control in this respect.

--
Phil, Squid-in-Training

David Damerell
August 4th 03, 03:41 PM
John Appleby > wrote:
>As a result the front brake is far more effective a stopping mechanism
>provided you don't lock it up. Obviously using both brakes at once is going
>to stop you faster than using just one,

That may be obvious to you but it is still not true. Read Sheldon's page
on the subject!
--
David Damerell > flcl?

David Damerell
August 4th 03, 03:46 PM
Rick Onanian > wrote:
>On 1 Aug 2003 10:35:16 -0700, Luigi de Guzman > wrote:
>>2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
>>limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
>>recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do
>I suspect that the additional weight and weight distribution of
>motorcycles makes the rear brake more useful.

Another consideration is that at motorcycle speeds a lot more can happen
in between discovering a front brake failure and engaging the rear brake -
hence there is a greater argument for having the rear brake at least ready
to apply, and the quickest way to do that is probably to have it applied a
little to start with.

I wonder, also, if the weight of motorcycles makes it more likely that the
rear will want to slip out and overtake the front if the rear brake is not
applied?
--
David Damerell > flcl?

Alex Rodriguez
August 4th 03, 05:13 PM
If you ride slow enough, you don't need any brakes. That is probably what your
friend is talking about.
-----------------
Alex __O
_-\<,_
(_)/ (_)

Mike S.
August 4th 03, 05:13 PM
> That may be obvious to you but it is still not true. Read Sheldon's page
> on the subject!
> --
> David Damerell > flcl?

There are a lot of things that Sheldon knows a lot more about than I do.
There are also topics on which I strongly disagree with him. This is one.

I would really like to be there when someone using Sheldon's braking article
as gospel really needs to stop NOW! I don't wish the results on anyone.

Why wouldn't you want to use all the available braking in an emergency
situation? It may not do a bunch, but the rear brake does help slow you
down.

Mike

Ryan Cousineau
August 4th 03, 06:02 PM
In article >,
David Damerell > wrote:

> Rick Onanian > wrote:
> >On 1 Aug 2003 10:35:16 -0700, Luigi de Guzman > wrote:
> >>2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
> >>limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
> >>recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do
> >I suspect that the additional weight and weight distribution of
> >motorcycles makes the rear brake more useful.

Some cruiser and touring motorcycles are so long and heavy (and in some
cases, have such bad front brakes) that the rear end will effectively
never lift off the ground (or to be more accurate, you don't want to be
around when it happens). In such a case, the rear brake provides
effective deceleration even in emergency braking.

> Another consideration is that at motorcycle speeds a lot more can happen
> in between discovering a front brake failure and engaging the rear brake -
> hence there is a greater argument for having the rear brake at least ready
> to apply, and the quickest way to do that is probably to have it applied a
> little to start with.

On most motorcycles, if you experienced front brake failure as you
entered an emergency braking situation, your only hope would be to find
an escape route. Rear brake only would so vastly increase your braking
distance that you would almost certainly hit something.

> I wonder, also, if the weight of motorcycles makes it more likely that the
> rear will want to slip out and overtake the front if the rear brake is not
> applied?

Not really. p=mv. The more weight you have, the less it wants to change
direction. On the other hand, if it does move, you have a bigger problem.

A major reason for motorcyclists to use both brakes is to balance the
chassis as they enter a corner, similar to Jobst's recommendations for
quick cornering on a bicycle, but different because the motorcycle has a
suspension system that complicates things, and it can accelerate out of
the corner.

--
Ryan Cousineau, http://www.sfu.ca/~rcousine
President, Fabrizio Mazzoleni Fan Club

Peter Cole
August 4th 03, 07:07 PM
"Mike S." <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]

> I would really like to be there when someone using Sheldon's braking article
> as gospel really needs to stop NOW! I don't wish the results on anyone.
>
> Why wouldn't you want to use all the available braking in an emergency
> situation? It may not do a bunch, but the rear brake does help slow you
> down.

Unless you're in a reduced traction situation, the front brake provides all
the "available braking". Under maximum braking, the rear wheel completely
unloads making it useless. Before that point, it is prone to skid when it
locks. A skidding wheel will go sideways just as happily as forward. Two-brake
panic stops are a great way to get your rear wheel to come around. If riding
sideways is what you're after, it's a good technique.

Mark Hickey
August 4th 03, 07:20 PM
David Damerell > wrote:

>Another consideration is that at motorcycle speeds a lot more can happen
>in between discovering a front brake failure and engaging the rear brake -
>hence there is a greater argument for having the rear brake at least ready
>to apply, and the quickest way to do that is probably to have it applied a
>little to start with.
>
>I wonder, also, if the weight of motorcycles makes it more likely that the
>rear will want to slip out and overtake the front if the rear brake is not
>applied?

I saw a study on stopping distances in a motorcycling magazine about a
million years ago.

As expected, rear-only braking led to some really, REALLY long
stopping distances.

Front-only braking was nearly as good as it got.

The absolute best stopping distances were those when the rider got it
"just right" and used as much front brake as possible, but didn't
quite lock up the rear brake.

However, the best average "stopping mode" during the tests happened
when the rider simply locked up the rear and concentrated only on the
front brake.

Mark Hickey
Habanero Cycles
http://www.habcycles.com
Home of the $695 ti frame

Rick Onanian
August 4th 03, 09:10 PM
On Mon, 4 Aug 2003 09:13:39 -0700, Mike S. <[email protected]> wrote:
> Why wouldn't you want to use all the available braking in an emergency
> situation? It may not do a bunch, but the rear brake does help slow you
> down.

It depends on which emergency situation. In many
pavement-surfaced emergency situations, a properly
adjusted front brake will provide enough braking to
keep all your weight off the rear wheel; in that
situation, the rear brake will not change anything,
unless you've modulated your braking so precisely
that the rear wheel has a small amount of lateral
traction to keep you from sliding out sideways.

That said, I know that when I was test-riding my
road bike downhill in the city at about 30 mph and
a car pulled out from a sidestreet, I didn't blow
time thinking and deciding which brake to use how
much; I just squeezed the hell out of those levers,
which resulted in the front slowing me and the rear
skidding (with no effect, although it could have
had a bad effect).

That was scary, exhilirating, exciting, and quite
fun, and I hope it never happens again.

> Mike
--
Rick Onanian

Luigi de Guzman
August 5th 03, 12:00 AM
Thanks mark. That pretty much answered my question. Wish I had a
link to the experimental results--they would make for some good
reading.


-Luigi
BTW, I'm still looking for an excuse to try out that recipe on your
website....

Terry Morse
August 5th 03, 12:02 AM
Mike S. wrote:

> Why wouldn't you want to use all the available braking in an emergency
> situation? It may not do a bunch, but the rear brake does help slow you
> down.

The rear brake can also make you crash when it's locked up. This
causes "fishtailing", as the rear wheel tries to swap places with
the front wheel. A locked rear wheel make an inherently unstable
ride.
--
terry morse Palo Alto, CA http://www.terrymorse.com/bike/

Mike S.
August 5th 03, 12:33 AM
"Terry Morse" > wrote in message
...
> Mike S. wrote:
>
> > Why wouldn't you want to use all the available braking in an emergency
> > situation? It may not do a bunch, but the rear brake does help slow you
> > down.
>
> The rear brake can also make you crash when it's locked up. This
> causes "fishtailing", as the rear wheel tries to swap places with
> the front wheel. A locked rear wheel make an inherently unstable
> ride.
> --
> terry morse Palo Alto, CA http://www.terrymorse.com/bike/

I dunno about y'all, but in the 15 years of riding, I've never had a serious
case of the bike swapping ends when I'm emergency braking. Last time, I was
off the back of the saddle, arms extended, and grabbing hold of both brakes
as hard as I could.

When I grab just the rear, it can happen. Used to when I was a kid
anyway...

Mike

David Kerber
August 5th 03, 12:43 AM
In article >,
says...
> Rick Onanian > wrote:
> >On 1 Aug 2003 10:35:16 -0700, Luigi de Guzman > wrote:
> >>2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
> >>limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
> >>recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do
> >I suspect that the additional weight and weight distribution of
> >motorcycles makes the rear brake more useful.
>
> Another consideration is that at motorcycle speeds a lot more can happen
> in between discovering a front brake failure and engaging the rear brake -
> hence there is a greater argument for having the rear brake at least ready
> to apply, and the quickest way to do that is probably to have it applied a
> little to start with.
>
> I wonder, also, if the weight of motorcycles makes it more likely that the
> rear will want to slip out and overtake the front if the rear brake is not
> applied?

In my experience, it's easier to control a locked-up rear brake on a
motorcycle than on a bike. Maybe because the extra mass slows things
down just a bit, giving me more time to react?



--
Dave Kerber
Fight spam: remove the ns_ from the return address before replying!

REAL programmers write self-modifying code.

Carl Riehm
August 5th 03, 01:32 AM
Is it possible that the difference between bikes and motorcycles, as far
as front/rear braking is concerned, is that a much larger percentage of
the weight on a bicycle (mainly the weight of the rider) is on the front
wheels? And so there would be a difference between a road bicycle, say,
where there is relatively little of the rider's weight on the seat, and a
hybrid or "comfort" bike, where most of the rider's weight is on the seat?

Carl

On Mon, 4 Aug 2003, Terry Morse wrote:

> Mike S. wrote:
>
> > Why wouldn't you want to use all the available braking in an emergency
> > situation? It may not do a bunch, but the rear brake does help slow you
> > down.
>
> The rear brake can also make you crash when it's locked up. This
> causes "fishtailing", as the rear wheel tries to swap places with
> the front wheel. A locked rear wheel make an inherently unstable
> ride.
> --
> terry morse Palo Alto, CA http://www.terrymorse.com/bike/
>

Robin Hubert
August 5th 03, 06:13 AM
I can't believe y'all are even thinking about braking. Doesn't eveyone know
about this by now?

My only thoughts (currently) on braking involve my failure to see the
smooth, steel manhole cover, and what the front brake means in such
situations, particularly in regards to healing.


--
Robin Hubert >

R15757
August 5th 03, 11:19 AM
<< he rear brake can also make you crash when it's locked up. This
causes "fishtailing", as the rear wheel tries to swap places with
the front wheel. A locked rear wheel make an inherently unstable
ride.
--
terry morse Palo Alto, CA http://www.terrymorse.com/bike/ >>

What is your bike, a tractor trailer? Jackknife?

In my experience, a rear wheel slide is (1) inevitable in any serious stop,
unless you don't touch the rear brake, and (2) easily controllable. Use both
brakes, get used to sliding.

Robert

Peter Cole
August 5th 03, 12:40 PM
"R15757" > wrote in message
...
> << he rear brake can also make you crash when it's locked up. This
> causes "fishtailing", as the rear wheel tries to swap places with
> the front wheel. A locked rear wheel make an inherently unstable
> ride.
> --
> terry morse Palo Alto, CA http://www.terrymorse.com/bike/ >>
>
> What is your bike, a tractor trailer? Jackknife?
>
> In my experience, a rear wheel slide is (1) inevitable in any serious stop,
> unless you don't touch the rear brake,

Which is the whole point of not using the rear.


and (2) easily controllable. Use both
> brakes, get used to sliding.

You can't control a skid, that's what skid means.

Peter Cole
August 5th 03, 12:45 PM
"Carl Riehm" > wrote in message
...
> Is it possible that the difference between bikes and motorcycles, as far
> as front/rear braking is concerned, is that a much larger percentage of
> the weight on a bicycle (mainly the weight of the rider) is on the front
> wheels?


Not true.

Jim Price
August 5th 03, 05:00 PM
Peter Cole wrote:

> "R15757" > wrote in message
> ...
>>
>>In my experience, a rear wheel slide is (1) inevitable in any serious stop,
>>unless you don't touch the rear brake,

At the end of the most serious stops I usually do on the road, there is
a short pause before the rear wheel comes back down to earth.

> Which is the whole point of not using the rear.

It wouldn't matter a jot if I had or hadn't used the rear wheel for a
serious stop.

>> and (2) easily controllable. Use both brakes, get used to sliding.

I don't always need to use the brakes to go sliding - gravel and a
corner is usually enough.

> You can't control a skid, that's what skid means.

You'd better not go skiing:)


--
Jim Price

http://www.jimprice.dsl.pipex.com

Conscientious objection is hard work in an economic war.

R15757
August 5th 03, 05:40 PM
Peter Cole wrote:

<< "R15757" > wrote in message
...
>> On the trail, tires skid and slide much easier. big
>> concern on gravelly trails is to not slide your front wheel at speed.

>Skidding a front wheel usually means a crash, no matter what the >surface. If
>you're turning and lose the front, you'll be down before you know it.

Exactly. Since the front tire slides out under much less braking force on a
trail, riders need to be much more judicious about front brake use on a trail.

>> Although
>> you will need the front brake, you want to have your rear brake set up to
carry
>> as much of the load as possible.

>How do you "set up" a brake to "carry a load"?
>>

Replace worn pads, tighten cables, true the wheel so the pads can be set close
to the rim, lubricate cables, levers and brakes, mount a rear tire with
significant knobbies which will allow you to apply more braking force before
skidding. Etc.

Robert

R15757
August 5th 03, 05:48 PM
<< You can't control a skid, that's what skid means.
>>

Plain disagree with you on that. It is easy to control a skid with so-called
body english, especially on pavement.

Robert

R15757
August 5th 03, 05:57 PM
<< > In my experience, a rear wheel slide is (1) inevitable in any serious
stop,
> unless you don't touch the rear brake, and (2) easily controllable. Use both
> brakes, get used to sliding.

>Wrong and wrong. Unless you think Beloki just didn't have enough
>experience or skill to "control" his skidding back wheel:

http://boss.streamos.com/qtime/6/oln/tdf2003video/14action8_300.mov

I didn't invent the physics, I just report it.
--
terry morse Palo Alto, CA http://www.terrymorse.com/bike/
>>

You should look again at the tape. Beloki did in fact control his skidding rear
wheel, for a moment. Then his tire came off the rim. When his rear came off the
ground is when he lost total control. The wheel came back to pavement and
stuck, sending him high-side.

Also in the same tape you might notice some guy named Lance *locking up his
rear wheel* as is prone to happen under heavy braking, and controlling the
skid, directing his bike around the wreck even with a locked rear wheel.

Robert

Mark Hickey
August 5th 03, 07:47 PM
"Peter Cole" > wrote:

>"Carl Riehm" > wrote in message
...
>> Is it possible that the difference between bikes and motorcycles, as far
>> as front/rear braking is concerned, is that a much larger percentage of
>> the weight on a bicycle (mainly the weight of the rider) is on the front
>> wheels?
>
>Not true.

What he said. The balance of a motorcycle, road bike and "comfort
bike" are all very similar in terms of weight distribution between the
front and back. If they weren't, they'd be evil handling pigs.

The biggest difference is in the lower center of gravity on a
motorcycle (particularly one like my BMW), allowing me to use a LOT
more front brake than I could get away with on a bicycle with its
relatively high COG (after all, the "engine" averages about 1m/3'
above the pavement).

Mark Hickey
Habanero Cycles
http://www.habcycles.com
Home of the $695 ti frame

Mark Hickey
August 5th 03, 07:47 PM
David Kerber > wrote:

says...

>> I wonder, also, if the weight of motorcycles makes it more likely that the
>> rear will want to slip out and overtake the front if the rear brake is not
>> applied?
>
>In my experience, it's easier to control a locked-up rear brake on a
>motorcycle than on a bike. Maybe because the extra mass slows things
>down just a bit, giving me more time to react?

Exactly - on a 600 pound (270kg) motorcycle, the dynamics of getting
it sideways are entirely different than on a 17 pound road bike.
You're also more "anchored" on the motorcycle, much as you are on a
horse - on a bicycle, you're loosely attached, allowing the bike a lot
more movement.

I once lost a 750cc Kawasaki in a rear-wheel slide (seems the owner
forgot to mention his front brake didn't work - a fact I discovered
entering a tight right-hand curve at FAR over the maximum speed). I
was able to countersteer (to the lock!) and keep it up for quite a
while, even though I was now off the main road an flying sideways down
a path covered with deep rocks.

It's when the path ran out of rocks, and the rear tire "bit" (ala
Beloki's crash) that things got really interesting.

Mark Hickey
Habanero Cycles
http://www.habcycles.com
Home of the $695 ti frame

Peter Cole
August 5th 03, 07:49 PM
"R15757" > wrote in message
...
> Peter Cole wrote:
>> >How do you "set up" a brake to "carry a load"?
> >>
>
> Replace worn pads, tighten cables, true the wheel so the pads can be set
close
> to the rim, lubricate cables, levers and brakes, mount a rear tire with
> significant knobbies which will allow you to apply more braking force before
> skidding. Etc.

All of these things are even more critical on the front wheel. Steep descents
are when you really need effective braking, and there the front wheel gets
loaded even before the braking-induced weight transfer (not to mention fork
dive). Lots of mountain bikers brake downhill by skidding their rear wheels,
it's not the sign of an expert rider.

Peter Cole
August 5th 03, 07:55 PM
"Jim Price" > wrote in message
...
> Peter Cole wrote:
>
> > You can't control a skid, that's what skid means.
>
> You'd better not go skiing:)

I ski a lot. Balancing a bike requires steering.

Peter Cole
August 5th 03, 08:54 PM
"Kevan Smith" /\/\> wrote in message
...
> On Tue, 05 Aug 2003 18:55:18 GMT, "Peter Cole" > from
> Comcast Online wrote:
>
> >"Jim Price" > wrote in message
> ...
> >> Peter Cole wrote:
> >>
> >> > You can't control a skid, that's what skid means.
> >>
> >> You'd better not go skiing:)
> >
> >I ski a lot. Balancing a bike requires steering.
>
> You can't track stand?

A track stand requires steering:

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gloss_tp-z.html

"Track Stand
The act of balancing motionless on a bicycle. This is done most easily on a
fixed-gear bicycle. The rider turns the front wheel to about a 45 degree angle
and balances with the cranks horizontal. If the bicycle starts to lean in the
direction the front wheel faces, a slight forward movement of the cranks will
bring the tires back under the rider's center of gravity. If the bicycle leans
the other way, rolling backward will correct the lean.
It is possible to do a track stand on a freewheel-equipped bicycle it the
front wheel is pointed up a sloping section of road."

Rick Onanian
August 5th 03, 11:36 PM
On Tue, 05 Aug 2003 11:43:32 GMT, Peter Cole >
wrote:
> How do you "set up" a brake to "carry a load"?

Weld a rack to the caliper.

--
Rick Onanian

Rick Onanian
August 5th 03, 11:41 PM
On 05 Aug 2003 16:40:23 GMT, R15757 > wrote:
> to the rim, lubricate cables, levers and brakes, mount a rear tire with
> significant knobbies which will allow you to apply more braking force
> before skidding. Etc.

How would a knobby tire allow you to apply more braking force?

At least, I thought we were discussing pavement-riding here...

> Robert
--
Rick Onanian

David Kerber
August 6th 03, 12:16 AM
In article >, r15757
@aol.com says...
> << You can't control a skid, that's what skid means.
> >>
>
> Plain disagree with you on that. It is easy to control a skid with so-called
> body english, especially on pavement.

Steer into it, just like in a car. Works fine on both bicycles and
motorcycles.

--
Dave Kerber
Fight spam: remove the ns_ from the return address before replying!

REAL programmers write self-modifying code.

R15757
August 6th 03, 05:41 AM
<< I don't see it that way. I see a skidding wheel slipping to the
left, followed by a "fishtail" to the right. I submit he lost
control as soon as his rear end started coming around.>>

Yes he lost control as soon as his rear end started coming around, but his rear
end was in the air at the time, not skidding. Bikes jackknife when the rear
comes off the ground, not during rear wheel skids.

<<Had Beloki
not skidded his back wheel in the first place, it is likely he would
have not fallen. Note that he was *not* turning when the skid began, so the
culprit was his braking -- not the hot tar (which Armstrong negotiated just
fine).>>

He was braking heavily on approach to the turn, undoubtedly leaning hard on the
front brake, which unweights the rear end. Add an unusually slippery
surface--surprisingly slippery to Beloki--and you get an unexpected rear wheel
skid. Yes, the sudden sideways slip of his rear end started the wreck.


<< You must have better eyes, or a better recording. All I can see is
Lance tracking straight. I suspect he has good enough bike handling
skills to avoid a rear wheel lock-up. >>

I have this on tape and watched it several times. I assure you LA's rear wheel
was totally locked up as he maneuvered left around fallen Beloki. It's plain as
day.

LA's handling skills are excellent. They allowed him to keep the rear wheel on
the ground, and to control the skid. Rear wheel skid, although only adding a
little to stopping power, is inevitable under such hard braking. You must not
have to panic stop very much or else you would know this already. This is to
your credit I suppose.

Go out and try a few hard stops. Get up to about 15-20 mph and try to stop as
quickly as possible. Try some using only the front brake, and some with both
brakes. You will notice (1) you will stop a little bit shorter when using both
brakes and (2) trying not to skid the rear tire during such a stop is like
trying to keep your eyes open during a sneeze.

Robert

Tokyo-B
August 6th 03, 08:04 AM
"asqui" > wrote in message >...
> Disclamer: The following discussion is carried out in the context of braking
> on regular, clean, dry, level, road surface in a straight line, for the
> purpose of decelerating from a given velocity to zero velocity in the
> shortest distance possible.


Man - you certainly do ride some boring trails...

Luigi de Guzman
August 6th 03, 05:51 PM
(Tokyo-B) wrote in message >...
> "asqui" > wrote in message >...
> > Disclamer: The following discussion is carried out in the context of braking
> > on regular, clean, dry, level, road surface in a straight line, for the
> > purpose of decelerating from a given velocity to zero velocity in the
> > shortest distance possible.
>
>
> Man - you certainly do ride some boring trails...

and *you* certainly don't ride for transport!

the roads are anything but boring.

Especially in the middle of a big city, or in a car-crazy suburb.

I enjoy it though. Kinda like traffic surfing. very zen feeling.

Go play in traffic!

-Luigi

Bernie
August 7th 03, 05:02 AM
Luigi de Guzman wrote:

> So i've got to get to the library and return books. Somewhere in the
> middle of the City, in crowded stop-and-go traffic, my front brake
> cable snaps. apply my rear coaster brake (yuk). Limp to the library,
> return books, get bike to shop where a shopdude fits me up with new
> cable for GBP 1.80. great.
>
> I observe from my brief trip without a front brake that I am more or
> less utterly dependent on it. it's very hard for me to imagine riding
> without one. And yet when I got back to my room, I had an interesting
> AIM conversation with a friend fo mine from home:
>
> "you mean you use your *front* brake?" he said, somewhat incredulous.
> "I never use my front brake."
>
> I explain all the usual things--quote sheldon brown and my own
> experience, tell him to watch the beloki crash film again. but he
> persists. "Besides, all of my riding has been trail-riding, and I
> hardly ever use my front brake there."
>
> A statement I found very hard to believe.
>
> Then, out of curiosity, I went to see what our fossil-fueled brothers
> on motorbikes have to say about braking. They say to brake with both
> at the same time:
>
> "Use both brakes whenever slowing or stopping
>
> To stop, the hands and feet work together in a coordinated and smooth
> fashion. Squeeze the clutch and the front brake lever while pressing
> on the rear brake pedal and downshifting to first gear. The front
> brake provides around 70% of the stopping power for your motorcycle.
>
> Both brakes should be applied at the same time when stopping. Even
> though the full braking potential of each wheel may not be required
> for normal, planned stops, it is important to develop the habit of
> using both brakes so that your reflexes will be ready to respond
> quickly and properly when an emergency situation occurs."
>
> they even have a diagram:
>
> <http://www.msf-usa.org/CourseReview/assets/RiderHandbook_27_1.gif>
>
> In light of all of this I make a few observations & questions
>
> 1) Those big Flying Pigeons or Dutch roadsters, with only coaster
> brakes, were probably never intended to go very fast at all. My
> braking distance with only a rear coaster was scary, and my ability to
> brake depended largely on where my feet were in the pedal stroke.
> unnerving. [and I'm not very fast--the messengers and a lot of
> commuters, indeed, at at least one little girl can all beat me,
> speedwise]
>
> 2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
> limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
> recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do
> some tests when I go home, with the assistance of my science-minded
> younger brother]
>
> 3) If trail riders don't use their front brakes much--as my friend,
> who was a sometime MTBer, seems to allege--why do I see so many
> front-wheel disk brakes?
>
> -Luigi

Hey Luigi
As a person who was a kid on a CCM coaster brake bike in the mid 50's to
early 60's, I can say those brakes (I think we called them Bendix brakes)
worked very well. They withstood a lot of abuse, and kid cyclists learned
to use them very well. I remember lots of sliding stops, often just for
show, sometimes to save one's life.
My brakes never failed and I don't remember ever hearing about bad coaster
brakes. In that day we were all aware that "racing" bikes with lever
brakes were death traps because if you applied the front brakes too hard
you would fly over the bars. (!!!)

Certainly no one expected to apply his coaster brakes hard and still be in
a stable and upright position, that was just not possible. I still think
they are practical and durable brakes for those who want a simple shopper
type bicycle.
Best regards, Bernie

Robin Hubert
August 7th 03, 01:47 PM
"Bernie" > wrote in message
...
>
>
> Luigi de Guzman wrote:
>
> > So i've got to get to the library and return books. Somewhere in the
> > middle of the City, in crowded stop-and-go traffic, my front brake
> > cable snaps. apply my rear coaster brake (yuk). Limp to the library,
> > return books, get bike to shop where a shopdude fits me up with new
> > cable for GBP 1.80. great.
> >
> > I observe from my brief trip without a front brake that I am more or
> > less utterly dependent on it. it's very hard for me to imagine riding
> > without one. And yet when I got back to my room, I had an interesting
> > AIM conversation with a friend fo mine from home:
> >
> > "you mean you use your *front* brake?" he said, somewhat incredulous.
> > "I never use my front brake."
> >
> > I explain all the usual things--quote sheldon brown and my own
> > experience, tell him to watch the beloki crash film again. but he
> > persists. "Besides, all of my riding has been trail-riding, and I
> > hardly ever use my front brake there."
> >
> > A statement I found very hard to believe.
> >
> > Then, out of curiosity, I went to see what our fossil-fueled brothers
> > on motorbikes have to say about braking. They say to brake with both
> > at the same time:
> >
> > "Use both brakes whenever slowing or stopping
> >
> > To stop, the hands and feet work together in a coordinated and smooth
> > fashion. Squeeze the clutch and the front brake lever while pressing
> > on the rear brake pedal and downshifting to first gear. The front
> > brake provides around 70% of the stopping power for your motorcycle.
> >
> > Both brakes should be applied at the same time when stopping. Even
> > though the full braking potential of each wheel may not be required
> > for normal, planned stops, it is important to develop the habit of
> > using both brakes so that your reflexes will be ready to respond
> > quickly and properly when an emergency situation occurs."
> >
> > they even have a diagram:
> >
> > <http://www.msf-usa.org/CourseReview/assets/RiderHandbook_27_1.gif>
> >
> > In light of all of this I make a few observations & questions
> >
> > 1) Those big Flying Pigeons or Dutch roadsters, with only coaster
> > brakes, were probably never intended to go very fast at all. My
> > braking distance with only a rear coaster was scary, and my ability to
> > brake depended largely on where my feet were in the pedal stroke.
> > unnerving. [and I'm not very fast--the messengers and a lot of
> > commuters, indeed, at at least one little girl can all beat me,
> > speedwise]
> >
> > 2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
> > limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
> > recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do
> > some tests when I go home, with the assistance of my science-minded
> > younger brother]
> >
> > 3) If trail riders don't use their front brakes much--as my friend,
> > who was a sometime MTBer, seems to allege--why do I see so many
> > front-wheel disk brakes?
> >
> > -Luigi
>
> Hey Luigi
> As a person who was a kid on a CCM coaster brake bike in the mid 50's to
> early 60's, I can say those brakes (I think we called them Bendix brakes)
> worked very well. They withstood a lot of abuse, and kid cyclists learned
> to use them very well. I remember lots of sliding stops, often just for
> show, sometimes to save one's life.

No way! What you kids didn't know is that slamming on the rear brake and
sliding did little to nothing in regards to saving your lives. You only
think it did.

> My brakes never failed and I don't remember ever hearing about bad coaster
> brakes. In that day we were all aware that "racing" bikes with lever
> brakes were death traps because if you applied the front brakes too hard
> you would fly over the bars. (!!!)

Uh, do you still believe this?

>
> Certainly no one expected to apply his coaster brakes hard and still be in
> a stable and upright position, that was just not possible.

?????

>I still think
> they are practical and durable brakes for those who want a simple shopper
> type bicycle.

Sure, as long as you ride the thing at 10mph or less, and on the sidewalk,
and never have to stop quickly.




--
Robin Hubert >

Larry Schuldt
August 7th 03, 02:22 PM
On Thu, 07 Aug 2003 12:47:02 GMT, "Robin Hubert"
> wrote:


>Sure, as long as you ride the thing at 10mph or less, and on the sidewalk,
>and never have to stop quickly.

Don't forget... at that time you probably weighed much less than 100
pounds. The coaster brake was stopping a lot less mass going at
considerably slower speeds.

larry
--
To reply by e-mail, be polite. Rudeness will get you nowhere.

Robin Hubert
August 7th 03, 02:28 PM
"Larry Schuldt" > wrote in message
...
> On Thu, 07 Aug 2003 12:47:02 GMT, "Robin Hubert"
> > wrote:
>
>
> >Sure, as long as you ride the thing at 10mph or less, and on the
sidewalk,
> >and never have to stop quickly.
>
> Don't forget... at that time you probably weighed much less than 100
> pounds. The coaster brake was stopping a lot less mass going at
> considerably slower speeds.
>

Ah, well, I haven't forgotten. We lived on our bikes as kids, especially in
the summer. This was pre-bmx days so kids bikes to us were 20" wheeled
Schwinn, 24" Western Flyer, Murray bicycles, and anything we could pull out
of the trash and local ponds and cobble together, with coaster brakes, all
of 'em. We also did stuff like off-roading, built jumps (20ft flights
sometimes), and an amazing array of other stunts that I wouldn't think of
doing today. I still wouldn't say a coaster brake only is ideal. Every kid
can learn to properly use a front brake. In fact, that's the best time to
learn.



--
Robin Hubert >

Bernie
August 7th 03, 02:56 PM
Robin Hubert wrote:

> > As a person who was a kid on a CCM coaster brake bike in the mid 50's to
> > early 60's, I can say those brakes (I think we called them Bendix brakes)
> > worked very well. They withstood a lot of abuse, and kid cyclists learned
> > to use them very well. I remember lots of sliding stops, often just for
> > show, sometimes to save one's life.
>
> No way! What you kids didn't know is that slamming on the rear brake and
> sliding did little to nothing in regards to saving your lives. You only
> think it did.

>
> I still think it did save me sometimes.

>
> > My brakes never failed and I don't remember ever hearing about bad coaster
> > brakes. In that day we were all aware that "racing" bikes with lever
> > brakes were death traps because if you applied the front brakes too hard
> > you would fly over the bars. (!!!)
>
> Uh, do you still believe this?
>

Nope. It was a kid myth of the time, possibly still out there...

> > Certainly no one expected to apply his coaster brakes hard and still be in
> > a stable and upright position, that was just not possible.
>
> ?????

With only a rear brake that easily locks up the wheel, its hard to remain in a
stable position. You tend to slide and end up with one foot on the ground for
stability as you skid.

>
> >I still think
> > they are practical and durable brakes for those who want a simple shopper
> > type bicycle.
>
> Sure, as long as you ride the thing at 10mph or less, and on the sidewalk,
> and never have to stop quickly.

Lots of people ride at less than 10 mph all the time and still go places and do
things on their bikes. I know a few who don't like bikes with gearshifts and
handbrakes because they want simplicity. Look at the current popularity of
cruisers. More power to them!
Sidewalk riding? I'm fully in favour of street riding. Sidewalks are called
walks because....
Bernie

David Kerber
August 7th 03, 04:39 PM
In article et>,
says...
> "Bernie" > wrote in message
> ...
> >
> >
> > Luigi de Guzman wrote:
> >
> > > So i've got to get to the library and return books. Somewhere in the
> > > middle of the City, in crowded stop-and-go traffic, my front brake
> > > cable snaps. apply my rear coaster brake (yuk). Limp to the library,
> > > return books, get bike to shop where a shopdude fits me up with new
> > > cable for GBP 1.80. great.
> > >
> > > I observe from my brief trip without a front brake that I am more or
> > > less utterly dependent on it. it's very hard for me to imagine riding
> > > without one. And yet when I got back to my room, I had an interesting
> > > AIM conversation with a friend fo mine from home:
> > >
> > > "you mean you use your *front* brake?" he said, somewhat incredulous.
> > > "I never use my front brake."
> > >
> > > I explain all the usual things--quote sheldon brown and my own
> > > experience, tell him to watch the beloki crash film again. but he
> > > persists. "Besides, all of my riding has been trail-riding, and I
> > > hardly ever use my front brake there."
> > >
> > > A statement I found very hard to believe.
> > >
> > > Then, out of curiosity, I went to see what our fossil-fueled brothers
> > > on motorbikes have to say about braking. They say to brake with both
> > > at the same time:
> > >
> > > "Use both brakes whenever slowing or stopping
> > >
> > > To stop, the hands and feet work together in a coordinated and smooth
> > > fashion. Squeeze the clutch and the front brake lever while pressing
> > > on the rear brake pedal and downshifting to first gear. The front
> > > brake provides around 70% of the stopping power for your motorcycle.
> > >
> > > Both brakes should be applied at the same time when stopping. Even
> > > though the full braking potential of each wheel may not be required
> > > for normal, planned stops, it is important to develop the habit of
> > > using both brakes so that your reflexes will be ready to respond
> > > quickly and properly when an emergency situation occurs."
> > >
> > > they even have a diagram:
> > >
> > > <http://www.msf-usa.org/CourseReview/assets/RiderHandbook_27_1.gif>
> > >
> > > In light of all of this I make a few observations & questions
> > >
> > > 1) Those big Flying Pigeons or Dutch roadsters, with only coaster
> > > brakes, were probably never intended to go very fast at all. My
> > > braking distance with only a rear coaster was scary, and my ability to
> > > brake depended largely on where my feet were in the pedal stroke.
> > > unnerving. [and I'm not very fast--the messengers and a lot of
> > > commuters, indeed, at at least one little girl can all beat me,
> > > speedwise]
> > >
> > > 2) Is there some sort of maximum speed, or some other purely physical
> > > limit to front-brake only braking? Why do the motorcycle guys
> > > recommend two-brake braking? [this will probably require me to do
> > > some tests when I go home, with the assistance of my science-minded
> > > younger brother]
> > >
> > > 3) If trail riders don't use their front brakes much--as my friend,
> > > who was a sometime MTBer, seems to allege--why do I see so many
> > > front-wheel disk brakes?
> > >
> > > -Luigi
> >
> > Hey Luigi
> > As a person who was a kid on a CCM coaster brake bike in the mid 50's to
> > early 60's, I can say those brakes (I think we called them Bendix brakes)
> > worked very well. They withstood a lot of abuse, and kid cyclists learned
> > to use them very well. I remember lots of sliding stops, often just for
> > show, sometimes to save one's life.
>
> No way! What you kids didn't know is that slamming on the rear brake and
> sliding did little to nothing in regards to saving your lives. You only
> think it did.
>
> > My brakes never failed and I don't remember ever hearing about bad coaster
> > brakes. In that day we were all aware that "racing" bikes with lever
> > brakes were death traps because if you applied the front brakes too hard
> > you would fly over the bars. (!!!)
>
> Uh, do you still believe this?

Why not? It's true? In this case, "too hard" means hard enough to lock
the front, therby causing an endo (on most bikes, anyway).


--
Dave Kerber
Fight spam: remove the ns_ from the return address before replying!

REAL programmers write self-modifying code.

asqui
August 8th 03, 01:08 AM
David Kerber wrote:
> In article et>,
> says...
>> "Bernie" > wrote in message
>> ...
>>> My brakes never failed and I don't remember ever hearing about bad
>>> coaster brakes. In that day we were all aware that "racing" bikes
>>> with lever brakes were death traps because if you applied the front
>>> brakes too hard you would fly over the bars. (!!!)
>>
>> Uh, do you still believe this?
>
> Why not? It's true? In this case, "too hard" means hard enough to
> lock
> the front, therby causing an endo (on most bikes, anyway).

As recently mentioned somewhere (possibly even earlier in this thread, but I
can't be bothered to find it):
Locking the front would simply cause it to slide out to one side, much like
locking the rear. An endo is when you brake hard enough to exceed the
pitch-over point, but not hard enough to lock up the front.

As for the "death trap" comment: A front brake is a death trap because it
can be misused and cause an accident, but a rear brake is not a deathtrap
when the only way for you to stop with it from speed involves sliding all
over the place and possibly under the wheels of another vehicle?

Dani

David Kerber
August 8th 03, 01:58 AM
In article >,
says...
> David Kerber wrote:
> > In article et>,
> > says...
> >> "Bernie" > wrote in message
> >> ...
> >>> My brakes never failed and I don't remember ever hearing about bad
> >>> coaster brakes. In that day we were all aware that "racing" bikes
> >>> with lever brakes were death traps because if you applied the front
> >>> brakes too hard you would fly over the bars. (!!!)
> >>
> >> Uh, do you still believe this?
> >
> > Why not? It's true? In this case, "too hard" means hard enough to
> > lock
> > the front, therby causing an endo (on most bikes, anyway).
>
> As recently mentioned somewhere (possibly even earlier in this thread, but I
> can't be bothered to find it):
> Locking the front would simply cause it to slide out to one side, much like
> locking the rear. An endo is when you brake hard enough to exceed the
> pitch-over point, but not hard enough to lock up the front.

Do you really think you can slide the front on a typical road bike on
clean pavement? I've seen a few people (not many) lock the fronts while
going straight, and they've always gone over the front, apparently
because the tire had too much traction to slide.

Of course hitting the front brakes too hard on a corner is an entirely
different matter, because you have a sideways component to the
frictional force adding to the deceleration component.

....

--
Dave Kerber
Fight spam: remove the ns_ from the return address before replying!

REAL programmers write self-modifying code.

Rick Onanian
August 8th 03, 02:36 AM
On Fri, 8 Aug 2003 00:08:29 +0000 (UTC), asqui >
wrote:
> As for the "death trap" comment: A front brake is a death trap because it
> can be misused and cause an accident, but a rear brake is not a deathtrap
> when the only way for you to stop with it from speed involves sliding all
> over the place and possibly under the wheels of another vehicle?

Don't forget the whole reason you're panic-braking in the
first place: to avoid a hazard in front of you. The rear
brake [used alone for panic-stopping] is a deathtrap because
it won't accomplish anything.

When I was a little kid getting my fun out of skidding as
long as I possibly could, I found that with a little more
speed I layed a LOT longer track. I can't imagine what
would happen with the speeds I reach now and the tiny
contact patch on my 700x23c @ 125 psi tires...I bet I
could maintain my speed skidding down a moderate hill.

> Dani
--
Rick Onanian

Rick Onanian
August 8th 03, 02:39 AM
On Thu, 7 Aug 2003 20:58:27 -0400, David Kerber >
wrote:
> Do you really think you can slide the front on a typical road bike on
> clean pavement? I've seen a few people (not many) lock the fronts while
> going straight, and they've always gone over the front, apparently
> because the tire had too much traction to slide.

I wish I could come up with some safe conditions for
testing this. It actually sounds like fun.

--
Rick Onanian

Tom Sherman
August 8th 03, 03:58 AM
David Kerber wrote:
>
> Do you really think you can slide the front on a typical road bike on
> clean pavement? I've seen a few people (not many) lock the fronts while
> going straight, and they've always gone over the front, apparently
> because the tire had too much traction to slide....

While the coefficient of static friction will be greater than the
coefficient of kinetic friction between the tire and pavement, there is
likely still enough retardation provided by a sliding front tire on an
upright road bike to cause a pitch-over.

It takes a high amount of braking force to lock up a wheel - I have to
pull very hard on the levers to lock up the front wheels on my tadpole
trike which has Avid cable operated disc brakes. (The combined
rider/trike center of mass is low enough and far enough back that the
rear wheel stays on the ground during application of maximum braking
force.

Tom Sherman - Quad Cities USA (Illinois side)

asqui
August 8th 03, 02:07 PM
Rick Onanian wrote:
> On Fri, 8 Aug 2003 00:08:29 +0000 (UTC), asqui
> > wrote:
>> As for the "death trap" comment: A front brake is a death trap
>> because it can be misused and cause an accident, but a rear brake is
>> not a deathtrap when the only way for you to stop with it from speed
>> involves sliding all over the place and possibly under the wheels of
>> another vehicle?
>
> Don't forget the whole reason you're panic-braking in the
> first place: to avoid a hazard in front of you. The rear
> brake [used alone for panic-stopping] is a deathtrap because
> it won't accomplish anything.

I know. I was being sarcastic :)

> When I was a little kid getting my fun out of skidding as
> long as I possibly could, I found that with a little more
> speed I layed a LOT longer track. I can't imagine what
> would happen with the speeds I reach now and the tiny
> contact patch on my 700x23c @ 125 psi tires...I bet I
> could maintain my speed skidding down a moderate hill.

Until you wear through the paper-thin tires and blow the inner, because then
your contact patch would increase ;)

>> Dani

Arpit
August 10th 03, 08:39 AM
I have a mountain bike, and I go riding in the australian bush a lot.
A lot of the times, there are tracks, with extremely steep descents.
The sort of thing which I can barely pull my bike up by hand when I
need to go back. They usually have gravel/small rocks on them, and I
find its often easies to just lock my wheels and slide down skidding,
often for a vertical distacnce of 50 meters or so at a time. YOu need
to have good balance though.


On Thu, 07 Aug 2003 21:36:05 -0400, Rick Onanian >
wrote:

>On Fri, 8 Aug 2003 00:08:29 +0000 (UTC), asqui >
>wrote:
>> As for the "death trap" comment: A front brake is a death trap because it
>> can be misused and cause an accident, but a rear brake is not a deathtrap
>> when the only way for you to stop with it from speed involves sliding all
>> over the place and possibly under the wheels of another vehicle?
>
>Don't forget the whole reason you're panic-braking in the
>first place: to avoid a hazard in front of you. The rear
>brake [used alone for panic-stopping] is a deathtrap because
>it won't accomplish anything.
>
>When I was a little kid getting my fun out of skidding as
>long as I possibly could, I found that with a little more
>speed I layed a LOT longer track. I can't imagine what
>would happen with the speeds I reach now and the tiny
>contact patch on my 700x23c @ 125 psi tires...I bet I
>could maintain my speed skidding down a moderate hill.
>
>> Dani

Buck
August 10th 03, 08:53 PM
"Arpit" > wrote in message
> I have a mountain bike, and I go riding in the australian bush a lot.
> A lot of the times, there are tracks, with extremely steep descents.
> The sort of thing which I can barely pull my bike up by hand when I
> need to go back. They usually have gravel/small rocks on them, and I
> find its often easies to just lock my wheels and slide down skidding,
> often for a vertical distacnce of 50 meters or so at a time. YOu need
> to have good balance though.

Exactly the kind of behavior which damages trails. Perhaps it is less of an
issue because of the low rainfall in the outback, but skidding down trails
in wetter areas messes up the drainage and results in water using the trail
as a conduit - which results in greater erosion. Learn to decend without
skidding. A rolling wheel provides greater control than a skidding wheel.
Brake to the point just before lockup. See how easy it is to decend when you
aren't sliding.

-Buck

Arpit
August 11th 03, 08:34 AM
Beleive me, this doesnt cause any erosion, some of the rocks are
gravel, but some are as large as your head :p Also, by locking the
wheels, and deflating the wheels to about 10psi, I get much better
traction than if i roll. Rolling I've had my brake pads melt.

Note these arent bike tracks, they are abandoned walking tracks. Only
the rangers drive through them on VERY chunky 4wds.

On Sun, 10 Aug 2003 19:53:24 GMT, "Buck" <j u n k m a i l @ g a l a x
y c o r p . c o m> wrote:

>"Arpit" > wrote in message
>> I have a mountain bike, and I go riding in the australian bush a lot.
>> A lot of the times, there are tracks, with extremely steep descents.
>> The sort of thing which I can barely pull my bike up by hand when I
>> need to go back. They usually have gravel/small rocks on them, and I
>> find its often easies to just lock my wheels and slide down skidding,
>> often for a vertical distacnce of 50 meters or so at a time. YOu need
>> to have good balance though.
>
>Exactly the kind of behavior which damages trails. Perhaps it is less of an
>issue because of the low rainfall in the outback, but skidding down trails
>in wetter areas messes up the drainage and results in water using the trail
>as a conduit - which results in greater erosion. Learn to decend without
>skidding. A rolling wheel provides greater control than a skidding wheel.
>Brake to the point just before lockup. See how easy it is to decend when you
>aren't sliding.
>
>-Buck
>
>

Arpit
August 11th 03, 10:30 AM
On Mon, 11 Aug 2003 01:04:42 GMT,
wrote:

>Armpit writes:
>
>> I have a mountain bike, and I go riding in the Australian bush a
>> lot. A lot of the times, there are tracks, with extremely steep
>> descents. The sort of thing which I can barely pull my bike up by
>> hand when I need to go back. They usually have gravel/small rocks on
>> them, and I find its often easier to just lock my wheels and slide
>> down skidding, often for a vertical distance of 50 meters or so at
>> a time. You need to have good balance though.
>
>Oh! You're so manly. How do you do it. I certainly can't balance
>that well...

hahahahah, dunno, its hard, but becomes easier when you see a 10
meter drop on either side ;)
>I assume from the way you tell it. I don't know what you
>call extremely steep but it isn't more than 40% grade because a
>bicycle with a rider on it will endo before that. You don't have to
>go to the Australian bush for such trails.
Aussie bush is within cycling distance from my house :) big national
park
>Mountains are full of
>trails that approach and exceed what a bicycle can descend. There are
>some well known passes in the Alps Col Ferret and Passo San Giacomo,
>for instance, where MTB's have no advantage over a road bicycle
>because the bicycle must be carried uphill and must be wheeled
>downhill by the rider who restrains it by using the front brake.

Yep, I did that the first few times going on those paths, too scared
to do otherwise :P But the weight of a steel kmart-i-cycle ;) and the
fact that my front AND back brakes were rarely enough from stopping
the bycycle sliding when i was wheeling it forced me to learn quick :p
>
>Of course there are local trails as steep as that but they aren't
>famous mountain passes.

Well, not all of it is steep, you get some flat bits to reast, and its
good if you go out of control, I think i mentioned one of my brake
pads melted off once.
>
>You probably need to re-evaluate what should be ridden and what should
>be walked.
Yes, well, the distinction blurrs when you don't care about the bike
surviving the trip. Heh, I used to ride bmx bikes, and well, i broke
the chains :/ then I realised the tracks I was cycling on were for
stunt motercycles.
>Skidding doesn't prevent an endo, because if it achieves
>constant speed then it is no different than letting the brake shoes
>slide with the front wheel wheel rolling.
Yep, except the surface area of 2 mountain bike tires inflated at less
than 10psi on the ground is greater than 2 brake pads.
>If you get any useful
>effect from your rear brake, then it ain't steep.

I get a useful effect. comfort ;)
>
>Jobst Brandt

>Palo Alto CA

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