View Poll Results: How many fingers do you use to brake?

Voters
231. You may not vote on this poll
  • 1 finger only, no exceptions.

    101 43.72%
  • 1 or 2 finger, depends on the situation/brakes.

    88 38.10%
  • 2 finger, never tried 1 finger.

    18 7.79%
  • 2 finger, tried 1 finger, didn't like it.

    21 9.09%
  • 3 or 4 finger.

    3 1.30%
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 35
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: lew242's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    527

    SIngle finger or not?

    Been trying single finger braking for ages, but still prefer two finger braking in many situations. What about you?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    1,932
    One finger in technical sections. Like having more hand on the bar. Two or three fingers when I'm also changing gears with dual control shifters.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    63
    I used to use two almost all the time, but noticed the other day that I only use one almost exclusively now and haven't noticed any difference... so there you go - not sure what that proves. I do use my index finger which some other riders seemed to think was odd.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    313
    1 finger does in for me in any situation I've come across. Disc brakes have so much bite I can't imagine why you would need two fingers unless you had rim brakes.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: lew242's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    527
    Quote Originally Posted by GDubT
    1 finger does in for me in any situation I've come across. Disc brakes have so much bite I can't imagine why you would need two fingers unless you had rim brakes.
    Not even for endos or initiating tail slides?

  6. #6
    My other ride is your mom
    Reputation: Maadjurguer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    4,441
    ironic question considering I just switched....I was always a two finger guy....but always favored small diameter handgrips......I just recently switched to a larger handgrip....which made the two finger a bit unstable in tech sections. I subsequently moved my brake levers inboard (towards the stem on the handlebar) to more closely align the maximum leverage point on the lever to my pointy finger (a one finger brake setup).

    Long story short....I really like the increased control of the one finger vis a vis steering...but still use two fingers when I want to finesse something such as some of those tricky descents when you're on the verge of having a tire grip vs. break loose.....somehow....the two finger works best for me in these situations.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    71
    I've been one finger since I changed to disc brakes. As Maadjurguer nentioned, the trick is to move the brake levers inboard of the shifters, so your finger is at the best point for leverage.
    Endos and skids no problem.
    Although, if the performance from your brakes is crap, you may need two fingers.

  8. #8
    g3h6o3
    Reputation: PissedOffCil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    3,711
    Can only brake with 1 finger since starting trials. You need as much handlebar grip as possible for trials so I got used to it and wouldn't go back.

    Lever needs to be as inside as possible as previously mentionned.
    Check out my SportTracks plugins for some training aid software.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: dietz31684's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    416
    "Lever needs to be as inside as possible as previously mentioned."
    Yes!

    I chopped off my shift indicators so I could swap the shifter and brake positions.
    Grip-shifter-brake


    1 finger always

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: lew242's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    527
    Quote Originally Posted by chrism
    trick is to move the brake levers inboard of the shifters, so your finger is at the best point for leverage.
    I have lever set for perfect single finger braking, nearly an inch inboard of the grip, use single finger baking on fast smooth sections of trail, but on slower very technical rocky sections of trail and for tail slides and endos use two fingers, although my forefinger is in the 'hook' and my index finger is balanced on the tip of the lever.

    Maybe because I'm older and have 15 years of road motorcycling (3 fingers) I find I can put more power through my brake system with two fingers, and two fingers seem to give me more modulation feel. I just can't get the full modulation feel and power I need with one finger. Although I'm wondering if I used a more powerful system like Avid Code this might be enough power for me to change to single finger in all situations.

  11. #11
    wuss
    Reputation: dropadrop's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    2,363
    Only one finger for sure, I have better use for the rest. Besides modern brakes are so powerfull that if you feel you need more you are probably pulling fron the wrong part of the lever.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    914
    I am a 2 finger person. I ride dirt bikes and can't do one finger on them so I think that's why I use 2 fingers on my bike. Just habit and what I am used to.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    313
    Quote Originally Posted by lew242
    Not even for endos or initiating tail slides?

    Not even for endos or tail slides. Like I said, there's really no reason at all to use more than one finger with a good set of disc brakes. Using two fingers might give you a little better modulation, but I've never come across a situation where I've needed it.
    Last edited by GDubT; 03-24-2011 at 09:51 AM.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: lew242's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    527
    Quote Originally Posted by GDubT
    Like I said, there's really no reason at all to use more than one finger with a good set of disc brakes.
    What brakes are you using? I'm using Elixir 5's, are they not enough?

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Mr. Lynch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    2,527
    I'm a 1 finger guy. I use to use 2 fingers with v-brakes, but with hydraulic discs 1 finger is plenty. I think it gives you more control having 4 fingers on the grips and 1 finger is more than enough to lock up the back.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    313
    Quote Originally Posted by lew242
    What brakes are you using? I'm using Elixir 5's, are they not enough?
    BB7 in the back and BB5 in the front. I don't really know too much about each and every hydro brake out there, but if the Elixir 5's aren't working for you, you either a) don't have them dialed in properly or b) should try a different set of brakes. I've read lots of bad reviews about the 5's and that could be your problem no matter how well you set them up.

    I've had nothing but good experiences with mechanical discs and I would definitely recommend a set of BB7's if you're in the market. Super easy to set up, bite like crazy and you don't have to worry about bleeding them ever...plus they're way cheaper than most hydros. Modulation is where I think you'll notice the difference going with a better set of hydro's.

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    55
    I used to need two fingers to stop. Got new brakes recently and haven't ever needed two fingers since.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation: lew242's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    527
    Quote Originally Posted by GDubT
    BB7 in the back and BB5 in the front.
    No that then...my Elixirs are dialed properly and are similar in modulation and power to BB7s. I've previously used both BB5s and BB7s.

    I think some of the problem here is I'm using two fingers on very rocky very steep technical natural trails. Maybe aggressive technical AM/Light FR would describe it. Probably I need Codes/R1s or bigger rotors. Of course many people swearing by one finger braking are really XC/light trail riders, and for that I too use one finger.

  19. #19
    wuss
    Reputation: dropadrop's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    2,363
    Quote Originally Posted by lew242
    Of course many people swearing by one finger braking are really XC/light trail riders, and for that I too use one finger.
    I wonder what kind of statistics this is based on?

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation: lew242's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    527
    Quote Originally Posted by dropadrop
    I wonder what kind of statistics this is based on?
    On the fact that some people who swear by single finger are using BB5s, which must surely say something relevant.
    I was hoping that someone might say that the terrain they were riding, brakes they were using or rotor size they had had an effect.
    For example "I used to use Avid J3s and used 2 fingered braking on my Nomad, but since I switched to codes, it's one finger all the way".
    or
    "I use Hayes Stoker Trails and occasionally I used two fingers in the knarly stuff, but since I switched to 185 rotors I only need one finger".
    (These are both fictional, but examples of what I was hoping for), but not: "I use Avid BB5 front and BB7 rear, and use one finger".

  21. #21
    wuss
    Reputation: dropadrop's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    2,363
    I've used Avid BB7's, Juicy 7's, Shimano LX, Magura Louise, Marta, Hope M4's and Hope V2's with rotors ranging from 160/160 to 203/203 and terrain ranging from gravel roads to DH tracks and never needed two fingers (after understanding how levers should be positioned).

    Bigger rotors do help, and also ensure your hands ache less after the ride. Going from BB7 to hydralics was more a change in modulation then power. I rode downhill for four hours in NZ with a loaner bike that had Magura Julies and 160/160 rotors. Still one finger was fine even though I lost a lot of power when the brakes started cooking.

    Honestly though, I don't understand how not to get enough power with one finger, I guess I have strong fingers? (doubt it really).

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    55
    To clarify then, I like to ride fast and or rough terrain, I just upgraded to hayes ace's and have 8in rotors. Some brakes do require two fingers for sure, and if you only need one finger on those brakes, your braking too early

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: dhbomber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    794
    1 finger all the friggin' way!
    My Bike: http://forums.mtbr.com/showpost.php?...3&postcount=49

    On-One Whippet 650b XC machine

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    2,619
    Quote Originally Posted by Maadjurguer
    ...but still use two fingers when I want to finesse something such as some of those tricky descents when you're on the verge of having a tire grip vs. break loose.....somehow....the two finger works best for me in these situations.
    I do the same thing. When I need the ultimate amount of braking finesse (such as in really steep technical sections), I find I have more control with two fingers (and may even go 3).
    Warning: may contain sarcasm and/or crap made up in an attempt to feel important.

  25. #25
    Bicyclochondriac.
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    13,178
    Good discs: 1 finger.
    Properly set up v's: 1 finger
    V's with crap pads or cables: up to 2 fingers.
    Cantis well set up: up to 3 fingers.
    Cheap cantis: 4 fingers and lots of prayer.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •