Are longer brake levers or shorter levers better for kids?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Are longer brake levers or shorter levers better for kids?

    It seems the consensus (myself as well) is that shorter levers are a better fit for kids. Shimano and Magura seem to have solid options for these. So I was looking at Magura's website and saw a lever chart. It showed the various braking power based on the lever (you can swap theirs out for about 4/5 other options). It showed iirc, that the longer levers provided more power(or maybe there is more to it and I missed it).

    I chatted with MeekBoyz DH bike guys and they indicated that power was the main focus due to kids limited hand strength.

    I'd think a longer "lever" for anything would provide more leverage/power over whatever its acting upon. Maybe a longer kids lever would provide the same? (Assuming you could just move the levers in far enough for the kids to 1 or 2 finger them and reduce the reach appropriately.)

    I'm sure its not that big of a deal but for bigger/longer shuttle days it'd be nice to be setup more comfortably. I dunno tho

  2. #2
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    A longer lever would provide more leverage, but it still sounds like hooey especially since the levers angle away from the bars. The longer the lever the longer the reach necessary to get a piece of it. Plus, technically speaking if you've got a rig trick enough for the Shimano or Magura brakes, then they should be learning to brake with 1 finger (or two if they have to) not their whole hand. At that point if you wanted the extra mechanical advantage to be of any benefit you'd have to move the brakes even further inboard to allow them to use their pointer finger on the outboard part of the lever. That's my $.02... and it seems to make sense in my head anyway, atleast for a Thursday afternoon lol.

  3. #3
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    The only advantage I see with longer levers is that you can move the shifter inward so the kids don't have to move their hands as much to shift. Power is not an issue from my experience, though my kids have not ridden any lift parks yet. I also have to encourage my girls to brake less as they have an overly healthy respect for fear.

  4. #4
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    If the brakes are working correctly then more leverage is not needed to stop kids weights.
    If they have to pull any harder on any decent hydraulics its because of heat or contamination. (Or perhaps off brand pads)

    Jnr still has 160mm both ends on his small bike 24 and the only issue is him occasionally glazing pads on the longest DH trails... which Id put bigger and better rotors on and finned pads rather than more leverage.

    However lever position and adjustment is crucial for 1 finger braking.

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