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Thread: No rear brake

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    Re: No rear brake

    Before you try this, have you ever tried actually going a whole ride without using your rear brake? You'll notice you have to plan your breaking way ahead, and basically ride a whole lot slower and more conservatively, defeating the purpose of having a light bike to begin with. And that's not even bringing in the obvious safety issue: your stopping distance will be dramatically greater in an emergency stop - hiker, oncoming biker around bend, etc.

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    Between you and this guy, we're in for some exciting cycling:
    Is it safe to use only the rear disc brake for trail riding ?

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    No rear brake

    Are you riding on or off road?

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    No rear brake

    Who am I kidding....it doesn't matter. Both would be crazy unless you're sporting a fixie rear setup.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Lol, actually I've never been on a MTB with a rear brake.
    Whoa! Subscribed.... You've NEVER ridden with a rear brake? You riding a Tri-cycle? Please post pics of this setup, I am interested.
    "We can always find excuses if we want to find them, but if we really want to do something, we have to just go."

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    No rear brake

    Quote Originally Posted by sodak View Post
    Whoa! Subscribed.... You've NEVER ridden with a rear brake? You riding a Tri-cycle? Please post pics of this setup, I am interested.
    I looked; he's brand new to MTB. I think he said January.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Yes, January. I've left the tabs on the frame and wave the centerlock rotor so its always an option. I just haven't needed one thus far and was amazed no one else uses this setup ESPECIALLY since there seems to be a no front brake cult following...
    tell me about this "no front brake cult" - I must have missed it
    Honestly... ahh I give up

  13. #13
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    You can also ride without a helmet to save weight.

    With the exception that riding without a backup for your brake is even dumber than riding bare-headed: a helmet will never prevent an accident, just protect your head in case you get into one. A brake could very well prevent the crash to begin with.

    Brakes fail. Riding without a fail-safe (another brake) should mean you're riding more carefully (like with brakeless fixies), but if you ride a one-brake bike as fast as one with two brakes, you have a hole in your head.

    (Closed tracks are a different thing, like BMX and velodrome. My strong position for two means of stopping applies to traffic and open trails.)

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    No rear brake

    I think riding without a rear brake is flawed logic. The whole point is to have a lighter bike? No offense but you're on a boat anchor of a bike. The logical way to lighten a bike is to upgrade to lighter parts or lighten yourself. The flip side is ride it how it is and actually get faster/better by riding instead of worrying about bike weight.

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    No rear brake

    That's in the dirt jump bike section. Think of that as a big bmx bike. My DJ bike has no front brake but I'm also not barreling down trails at double digit speeds with trees everywhere; I'm in a controlled area.

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    No rear brake

    You must not go very fast.

    I'd like to see a spec sheet on this revel. We sell revels and they're boat anchors of a bike

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    The short answer will be no, no one around here is going to have only a front brake with no rear, as we all kind of like being able to keep living. Dirt jump MTB's are the only bike that deliberately run one brake, but as mentioned, they are in controlled environment (most of the time).
    If you are riding on trails (or roads for that matter) and you have something unexpected happen, you are going to find it very very difficult to stop safely without causing yourself injury.
    As has been mentioned above, you have a very flawed idea of how to save weight on your bike.
    Put the rear brake back on your bike!
    I don't crash, I just have slightly uncontrolled dismounts!

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    Re: No rear brake

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    When I built my new MTB, I didn't get a rear brake, grinded of the rear rim brake mount/cable holders, and had the rear wheel built with a centerlock hub so I could also shave the weight of the 6 bolt flange as well as the centerlock lockring. Before I decided to do this I did TONS of research on pros and cons and didn't really find ANY info on the popularity of this light weight one brake setup. Obviously it's not an ideal setup for 99% of you, but is there seriously nobody else who favors this setup, or do my googling skills need work?
    IMO Nobody has been rude, and 99% are simply trying to grasp the concept of acceptable risk.

    By sharing your love of extreme sports, and wingsuit flying, it's become clear that your definition is a step beyond what most of us mere mtbr's would consider rational, let alone wise..

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  26. #26
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    No rear brake

    You have loads of places to drop weight and I find it more than a little stunning that you chose your rear brake.

    You have at least two people depending on your health. I don't get your rationale at all but let us know how it goes for you.

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    I suppose if you do not ride on any long, steep downhill runs, you'll be OK. I just hope you don't have to stop suddenly which could send you flying OTB.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Thanks. Im done losing weight until something breaks, but just to be clear the decision had nothing to do with weight otherwise I would have bought a lighter front tire or something similar. That would stun me as we'll. even if the rear brake was weightless, I wouldn't buy something just to not use it. What I mean is I'm not choosing between the weight and the brake. I have just not had a problem stopping with my front and FAST. Something's being lost in translation here. Perhaps you guys are all hardcore and so far removed from the recreational type of riding I do that you can't fathom how its not an issue?
    We aren't riding what you are riding. No way I could ride my downhill runs w/o the help of a rear brake and if you saw it/rode it, you'd agree. This is coming from a semi-weight weenie on an XC bike.

  30. #30
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    Keith, I didn't say you have a hole in your head.

    I did say if someone rides a bike with a single stopping method as fast as a bike with two, they have a hole in their head.

    It's precisely the kind of risk assessment you mentioned: if you only have one brake, you need to adjust your riding style. It's not just about possibility of failure, but the physics of decelerating a bicycle. Sure, you can stop a bike really fast with just the front brake, but with help from a rear brake it'll be faster.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    The weight savings is a definite benefit, but I never bought a rear brake because I've never used my front brake and felt like I needed to be able to stop more, if you can understand what I mean.
    Does OTB mean anything to you? Seriously, running only a front brake is a sure cause for a severe Over The Bars experience.. Those can be career ending at speed. just sayin...
    Last edited by sodak; 03-23-2013 at 05:43 PM. Reason: spelling
    "We can always find excuses if we want to find them, but if we really want to do something, we have to just go."

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  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    When experimenting and intentionally using the front brake too hard too fast I still didn't go OTB. The front wheel locks up and slides sideways as I go down on my side before I can blink. Still not OTB. How do you manage that?
    Hmmm.... I'm done... spectating only now..
    "We can always find excuses if we want to find them, but if we really want to do something, we have to just go."

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    Ok, Iíll try to offer my .02 without seeming like an a-hole. I have finished a ride without a rear brake before, and I gotta say that I did not enjoy it. Iíve also finished a ride with no front bike, and didnít like that either. I quite enjoy having both brakes at the speeds that I ride and for when there may be a mechanical or wreck induced problem with one of the brakes.

    No offense, but a 26 lb hardtail is a pig. My full suspension bike weighs just under 26. Iíve read your list of bike parts, and there are many places to trim weight other than eliminating the rear brake. Personally itís not something Iíd do, but to each their own.

    One point I will add, is that Iíd never ride without bar end plugs in place or atleast grips that completely cover the end of bars. I once watched a buddy take a ďcore sampleĒ of his leg with his handlebars in a fairly slow speed crash and it was very ugly.


    -RW

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    I don't understand how that happens. I can feel the weight shift and put my butt farther back as I feel the rear wheel get lighter. The front digs in very well and I stop very fast, especially going downhill. When experimenting and intentionally using the front brake too hard too fast I still didn't go OTB. The front wheel locks up and slides sideways as I go down on my side before I can blink. Still not OTB. How do you manage that?
    Find some grass so that if/when you go down, you won't get hurt. Ge up to speed, lots of speed. Hit the grass and lock the brakes. Squeeze the lever as hard as you can and as fast as you can. You will almost certainly crash, if not OTB, then you'll slide out to the side and roll. If you think this test is unrealistic, I got news for you, it is. Eventually, you will be in the same scenario but you'll be on hard or rough terrain and when you go down you're gonna get hurt.

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  40. #40
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    No rear brake

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    But you have more experience than me, so if you don't reply to my follow up questions how can I learn anything?
    Everybody is telling you the same thing: you need rear brakes mountain biking.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Yep, you just reiterated the results of my experimenting (and quoted it). The front wheel locked up and slid out from under me sideways VERY fast, no OTB. Learned not to do that, lol.

    But you did crash or lose control, right? That's my point. With a rear brake as well as a front, you can control how your bike moves to a degree. What I am saying is that you are much more likely to lose control (when you experience a situation) when you have to hit the brakes hard and fast by only having one brake verse two. In a nutshell, you are more likely to get hurt on your one brake bike, than I am on my two brake bike. Sorry...

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    RE: No rear brake

    I think the feeling of light weight is in your head.
    Sent from my Lumia 800 using Board Express

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Lost control is an understatement! I was on the ground a split second after I felt the tire lose traction, but before I even had a chance to let off the brake lever. Obviously it's safer to have 2 brakes. That's just simple physics. But It still amazes me that there's not a vocal group that don't use a rear when some are pro no front (DJ, fixie), and none at all (BMX) since the front is better at stopping. Thanks for the replies, and I'll post the video the first time I wipe out from no rear (I record everything in 1080p 30fps wearing my skydiving helmet/cam when we're MTBing)
    Well, I hope you don't get hurt!

    BTW, since nobody is speaking up about also using only a front brake, you are most likely the only mountain biker on planet Earth who does so.

  45. #45
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    Bwahahahaha Keithy, great thread mate, for a new member id say this is one of the better piss takes/threads ive seen, cheers mate, i actually think it deserves some +rep, comin your way bro....
    Dont ever let the truth get in the way of a funny story....

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwiplague View Post
    The short answer will be no, no one around here is going to have only a front brake with no rear, as we all kind of like being able to keep living.
    don't be so sure...







    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

  47. #47
    meh... whatever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    I don't know what qualifies as a boat anchor. Mine weighs 26lbs right now.

    Giant Revel 3 frame with a lot of crap grinded off
    Continental vertical 2.3 wire bead front tire
    Cheap Alex single wall wheel
    Cheap sram 6 bolt hub with disk
    Rockshox xc28 with green spring and rim brake mounts ground off
    Shimano hydraulic brake with BMW hydraulic fluid
    Cheap thick aluminum handlebars with ends filed and beveled to eliminate need for end plugs (I would have to modify the end plugs to get them to fit the ID because the bars are so thick!
    Shimano 9spf lever shifter
    ESI racers edge grips
    Cheap seatpost sawed off an inch below the top tube's bottom weld
    Cheap, light seat with Ti rails
    Shimano 11-34 cassette cs-hg20-9
    Shimano long derailleur
    Shimano 9spd chain
    Mrp bb mount front chain guide
    Mrp 32t podium chainring
    Shimano un-55 73x107 bb
    Shimano crankset m361 ground and modified to us single ring
    Cheap light aluminum cage platform pedals
    Velocity aero heat rear wheel with velo plugs
    Qtubes ultralight
    Ritchie's zmax intuition pro 2 rear tire
    Shimano m629 centerlock rear hub
    it's the BMW hydraulic brake fluid that makes it so light. every hard core rider knows that you can save quite a bit of weight here as the BMW fluid is easily 2lbs. lighter than other brands in the front brake system and you've removed the rear brake entirely. you can shave off about 4 more lbs. by replacing the oil in your fork with the BMW fluid as well. the stuff that rockshox uses weighs a TON.

    you could easily get this bike under 20 lbs by removing your saddle, seat post and clamp, every 2nd pair of spokes on your wheels, removing the wire beadS from your tyres, and drilling multiple holes in your frame/cranks/bars.

    keep us updated on your project!
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

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  49. #49
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    If it's really about the preference to ride without one even if it weighed nothing, I think "Weight weenies" is the wrong area for the discussion. People instantly think you just want to shave weight and draw quick conclusions: save elsewhere, not worth it etc.

    The bikes in the pics posted above could be fixed gear. It counts as one stopping method. I sometimes flip the rear wheel of my MTB and replace the disc with a bolt-on sprocket. The result is front brake + fixed gear as my stopping methods.

    In defense of the front brake I think a lot of OTBs are incorrectly attributed to it. Most of the time it's more about incorrect weight shifting on part of the rider: they weren't low and back enough. Of course if you shift your weight too far back or too soon (before braking), you won't have enough traction in front and will slip the front wheel. The perfect balance is to put enough weight on the front wheel to keep traction but also avoid the rear from unweighing too much. If you get to a point where the rear tire lifts off the ground, your center of gravity moves up and forwards: you are not stopping as effectively as you could.

  50. #50
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    No rear brake

    Yeah. This thread was probably posted in the wrong sub forum as the op has stated his objective was not weight savings.

    Can't wait for the videos. Especially as you become a better biker.

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    As is mentioned, relying solely on the front brakes is fine if you are in a controlled environment. I have to agree that the stoping power of the front is good enough once you get used to it. However, when you do ride on the bike lanes/trails, it is hard to avoid encountering 'sudden' situations. It is in these situations where our reflexes kick in and it is difficult to predict what actions our reflexes will bring. However, based on my experience, you would tend to jam whatever brake there is. And with only the front brake available, you would flip over the bars.

    In Denmark, most bicycles work on coaster brakes (i.e. having to back pedal to activate the rear brake). Therefore, there is only one lever on the handlebar for the front brake. As I was getting used to the braking system on those bikes there during my exchange studies, I started with relying heavily on the front brake because I was not used to back pedalling to brake. It was all fine, and it shows that front brakes do suffice for your ordinary journey. However, I witnessed a cyclist who was rounding a corner at normal speed. He spotted another cyclist who was riding head-on towards his direction at the very last minute because of the corner's blind spot and as you have guessed, his natural reflexes kicked in, causing him to squeeze the only lever available to him. Of course, he flew over the handle bars but was fortunate to come out of it unscathed because he was in thick winter clothing.

    Front brakes may suffice but I highly doubt you'd find a large pool of 'followers'. Nonetheless, it's interesting to learn that some have been relying solely on it.

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by HiddenStar View Post
    I witnessed a cyclist who was rounding a corner at normal speed. He spotted another cyclist who was riding head-on towards his direction at the very last minute because of the corner's blind spot and as you have guessed, his natural reflexes kicked in, causing him to squeeze the only lever available to him. Of course, he flew over the handle bars but was fortunate to come out of it unscathed because he was in thick winter clothing.
    Riding around a blind corner at normal speed is a hint: not a very good eye for traffic.
    That he hadn't practiced how to brake effectively beforehand is also obvious.

    I wouldn't be too quick to blame the bike.

  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddprocter View Post
    You'll notice you have to plan your breaking way ahead,
    Oh, I'll think he'll find that he gets plenty of breaking.

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    True indeed, the cyclist must not have been very experienced. Just citing an example of a 'sudden' situation though where your reflexes may kick in; in a way you may not want it to even if you have practiced.

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    Attachment 784342Attachment 784342Attachment 784343

    No rear brake. My Stump Jumper dumpster-dive fixie MTB project.
    Every man has inside himself a parasitic being who is acting not at all to his advantage.
    William S. Burroughs

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  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    I cant see the attachment, but isn't a fixed gear useful as a rear brake?
    Yes, in urban settings where you're not messing up the trail by skidding all over the place.

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Since getting multiple comments about how heavy (boat anchor) my Revel frame is, I've been trying to research how it compares to other MTB frames. I only bought the frame because it was dirt cheap, but all the info I can find seems to indicate that its not much heavier than the high end Giant aluminum frames, especially since I've ground off all the unnecessary stuff. Why does the Revel frame have a reputation for being heavy?
    I really don't get why it matters at this point. You have a really heavy front tire, heavy parts, and then saving ounces on the frame is not that worthwhile. You should either be committed to doing a lightweight build or just not worry about it.

  59. #59
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    You aked what qualifies as a "boat anchor" in the weight weenie world: A 26lb hardtail. There are lots of budget built hardtails on here under 20lb.
    I could ride with only a front brake if I chose to but it wouldn't be as fun and I'd have to go a lot slower. I go through 3 sets of rear brake pads in the time it takes to wear out 1 set of fronts.
    If you want to ditch a brake ditch the front. Again, you lose braking power but you can at least brake hard while maintaining front wheel traction for turning. I've never seen anyone ride with only a front brake and the only people I've seen with only a rear were on dirtjump bikes or in a hillclimb race.
    Keep the Country country.

  60. #60
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    I never ever use my rear brake, but i wouldn't remove it - i like to know it's there in the event my front fails.

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  62. #62
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    Since you asked Keith, I think that the weight benefits of losing a brake are FAR outweighed by the safety implications--not to mention the downright fun factor.

    The truth is that two brakes make for more controlled riding. While the majority of braking power comes from the front, the rear helps with stability. It's just a lot more fun to be able to control the behavior of both wheels on descents (and even on technical climbs sometimes).

    But if you want to ride with one brake, nobody is going to stop you. You wanted opinions, so you got them.

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  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    if it weren't for the rules in place where we ride I wouldn't wear a helmet in many of our rides either.
    Okay.. so I am back.. ^ This is a can of worms you will want to avoid opening on this site... may be too late, but I warned you. haha..
    "We can always find excuses if we want to find them, but if we really want to do something, we have to just go."

  65. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Saying everyone NEEDS a rear brake is like saying everyone NEEDS a full face helmet. FYI, I do wear a full face, not because I bought it for MTB but because its my wingsuit helmet. Please don't take this as argumentative and please do respond. This isn't why I started the thread but I'm enjoying sharing ideas about risk assessment. Ever heard of risk homeostasis? Interesting topics. Blue skies, brother!
    If you want to control both of your wheels, then, you do NEED two brakes. There are benefits to controlling both wheels--both from safety and control perspectives.

    But, no, you don't need two brakes to ride a mountain bike. I've ridden with just one (after having one fail), and I managed to limp along fine. Was it as fun? No. Was it as safe? No. Was it as fast? No. I didn't let it ruin my day, but that's because I could probably ride a 1980's Huffy and still have fun outside! But I have a lot more fun with a bike that gives me control and confidence.

    If there were some terrific advantages of riding with one brake that offset the obvious risk, then more people would do it. But, for most skilled riders, that just isn't the case. The minor weight savings certainly don't even come close to providing any worthwhile risk/benefit ratio.

    I think that your wingsuit experience is totally irrelevant. While I haven't base jumped before, I have participated in other mountain sports since I was a kid--and none of those experiences weigh on my decision to ride with two brakes.

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  67. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Makes sense. I understand and agree with all save for one exception. Do you really feel that your experience in non related extreme sports did nothing to shape your ability to calculate and manage risk in other areas?
    Honestly, very little. While some very basic mountain-living technical skills often cross over nicely (staying warm and dry, navigating through unknown terrain), the actual risks and benefits of various sports are pretty different. Participating in different sports has probably made me more thoughtful (a good thing)--but I always try to approach everything that I do with a fresh and open mind. There's so much to learn, and already "knowing too much" is a great way to miss out on the lessons of a new sport--not to mention getting yourself killed or hurt.

    Maybe the thing that has crossed over the most for me is thinking about the consequences of screwing up. There are some things that I don't do anymore, because getting killed would really make life hard for people that I love and who depend on me. When I was 20, I was willing to put a little more on the line--and to believe that I will come out the other side unscathed. As I've gotten older, and had friends die, I'm a lot more aware of the reality that "risk management" is sometimes less controlled than we like to think. It's also a numbers game, where luck plays a significant role.

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  69. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    When I don't wear my helmet cycling, I'm usually following my daughter with her training wheels down the sidewalk...
    Some of my worst crashes have occurred on flat terrain. Like the time that I decided to play polo with cow pies on a gravel road. Or the time that I was riding on a path with my family, and tried to see how far I could wheelie with clipless pedals. Doh...

    By the way, training wheels suck. Get her a Stryder ASAP. Or a scooter. Kids learn so much faster that way!
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  70. #70
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    I vote for you not wearing a helmet, like ever. Live free, dude.

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  72. #72
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    No rear brake

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    She's tiny and can't get both of her feet on the ground so the plan is training wheels til she's a bit taller, then remove the pedals balance bike style, then reinstall the padals and voila!
    That's what we tell people to do at the shop. Always works great!

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    No helmet? No rear brake? Skydiving? Wingsuits? You are an extreme adrenaline junky and I think it's fair to say that you are at a very high risk of dying from severe injuries by the risks you seem to think are "OK". I suppose your reply will be, "I'm not crazy, I'm just having fun".

    Nope, you are flat out crazy.

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  75. #75
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    Just be careful bud!

  76. #76
    meh... whatever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lelandjt View Post
    I go through 3 sets of rear brake pads in the time it takes to wear out 1 set of fronts.
    that ratio will become inverse should you ever begin using your front brake to its potential.
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwiplague
    The short answer will be no, no one around here is going to have only a front brake with no rear, as we all kind of like being able to keep living.
    Quote Originally Posted by monogod
    don't be so sure...
    Quote Originally Posted by Saul Lumikko
    The bikes in the pics posted above could be fixed gear. It counts as one stopping method.
    they are. but a "stopping method" is not necessarily synonymous with having a "rear brake". after all... hitting a tree at full speed counts as one stopping method as well but also isn't a brake.
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

  78. #78
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    The point is, a bike you ride outside of controlled environments (velodrome, BMX track...) should have two methods of stopping in case one fails, so you don't have to use a tree as a "stopping method". Fixed drivetrain counts as one.

    Of course it's not as effective as a front brake, but neither is a rear brake.

  79. #79
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    This has been a fun thread, but at the end of the day I don't really see any controversy here.

    From what I've read, the OP mentions that he's typically riding slowly, with family members. I don't see any massive braking demands from what he describes.

    Worst analogy in the world, but take the example of a driver in Phoenix, Arizona, who has never put snow tires on his car. "Why the heck would I ever need snow tires? I've never used them." The driver simply hasn't been in conditions that would require snow tires. So, thus far, seems to me that the OP hasn't been riding in conditions (trail, speed) that would make him question his front-brake-only position.

    It would be great if he could take a ride with my buddies and I. I'd be very interested to see if he could keep up, and to know if he could really manage with front brakes only. My personal take is that he'd start to consider a rear brake - but who knows - maybe he still wouldn't need it. I'd be really impressed if that were the case.

    (BTW, I'm not touching on the safety aspect here of having a secondary brake.)

  80. #80
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    Riding slow and safe is still fun. Seeing what's around you and enjoying the time on the trail has huge rewards. I sometimes go for a spin on my old-rusty-steel-rigid-department-store-bike barefoot and with out tools/spares. If this is how you ride, you don't need a rear brake.

    I love how the original poster made the bike from parts, learning from his mistakes, just having fun. That is real passion. It is a genius idea to grind off the tabs and unneeded mounts. Also, I would never have thought to use a centerlock hub without the lock ring to save weight.

    No rear brake is a great idea for a cool custom bike. Even if you decide to go stupid and race around with only one brake, chances are the brake will never fail. I have never had a cable snap.

    OP did you make it 1x9 gearing? What size chain ring did you use?

    Please post some pictures, I love custom bikes with unique ideas.

  81. #81
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    Although I didn't read the whole thread since every reply seemed the same, commenting on the OP's sanity, he must have his answer; apparently nobody else rides this way. At least he's having fun arguing with all the "experts" who didn't answer his question.

  82. #82
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    ^ So you're trying to make fools of everybody who replied?

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  84. #84
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    I cannot get your video link to work???

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  86. #86
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    There are two ways to add risks to sports:

    1. Push the envelope. That means attempting bigger drops on you bike--and wearing pads when necessary. Flying closer to features in a wingsuit--after refining the gear choices and knowing the route. Climbing harder routes on bigger mountains--with carefully selected tools and gear for the season. Riding in multi-day ultra-endurance races--with carefully selected equipment.
    2. Use the wrong gear. That means rock climbing in tennis shoes. Skiing big chutes without a beacon. Kayaking without a life jacket. Paragliding without a spare parachute. Riding a bike without proper brakes.

    In the former, successful athletes use appropriate equipment to add control and increase safety. Still lots of excitement and risk. In the latter--well, those people either end up dead or in the hospital.

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  88. #88
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    Sometimes the former do indeed get killed or injured. But not terribly often. Most accomplish awesome things, and live full and rich lives.

    The latter, however, accomplish very little. And they pretty much all get injured or killed.

    I don't know of one extreme athlete who intentionally increases risk, just for the sake of enjoying more risk, by limiting equipment. Yes, many of them take less gear sometimes--but only because it has some other benefit. For example, some people climb big peaks without oxygen. But they don't do it to increase risk, but rather to achieve a higher level of style. Not having oxygen can increase risk, but they mitigate that by acclimating better and making more conservative decisions. They don't do what you do, however, which would be akin to climbing without crampons--knowing that they would be unable to self-arrest should they slip.

    If you want to add risk to your lifestyle, maybe you should let an untrained kid pack your base-jumping parachute. Now that would be cool! You'd be giving up so much control--and adding a lot of risk! Or maybe you could ride your bike without ANY brakes--just rub your shoe against your tire!

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  90. #90
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    Maybe the wingsuit acts as a second brake.

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  92. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    Oops, sorry that was a mobile link since I've been making posts from my I phone (hence the bad auto correct spelling). This link should work...

    Arbor Hills Singletrack Mountain Bike Trail - YouTube
    Cool, thanks for fixing that. Upon watching the video, I think that speed is fast enough to warrant a rear brake, but YMMV.

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  94. #94
    meh... whatever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saul Lumikko View Post
    The point is, a bike you ride outside of controlled environments (velodrome, BMX track...) should have two methods of stopping in case one fails, so you don't have to use a tree as a "stopping method". Fixed drivetrain counts as one.
    the point is, it's still not a rear brake. my comment, tongue in cheek, was in response to not having a "rear brake" rather than a "stopping method"....
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Medlock View Post
    So hypothetically, if you rode the same trail where would you make use of the rear brake and to what benefit? Excuse my ignorance I have no concept of the rear brake other than physics knowledge. Would you have used it on the straights or the turns? As I mentioned, that was the fastest I ever go and when I started riding that trail there was only one part that made me go oh **** and wish I had another brake. There is a part where it goes downhill over two 1 ft drops one after another, followed by a quick sharp turn over rocks and a bit steeper downhill. I felt like I needed speed to go down the drops smoothly, but then found it hard to brake enough on the short straigh part before the turn. After some practice I figured out I coul brake in the turn and the wheel actually gives subtle feedback about when it going to lose traction. When I feel that I let go of the lever immediately and then squeeze it again and like magic the about to loose traction feeling was gone. Sorry for my lack of terminology but that's the best I can manage to explain it.
    Sorry, man I didn't mean to get you upset. You continue to look at it from a point of view as though everything is fine and dandy. I am looking at it from the standpoint of, "oh sh!t!" Meaning, I need to stop or maneuver radically right NOW! You've got to be on alert at all times. Having a rear brake (just in case, if for nothing else) makes sense from a safety POV. That's all.

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    OK, no problem.

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  100. #100
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    Yup. There are times when you would not want any rear brake force and times when may need as much as 50/50 front/rear rake force plus anything in between. Front/rear brake pressure is an imperfect science do to constantly changing circumstances/needs during each ride.

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