Linears/Canti Vs. Disc brakes- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Linears/Canti Vs. Disc brakes

    I've never had disc brakes. What are the pro's and con's? What do you ride? etc etc

  2. #2
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    I am bias to discs because I think it is all pro. In muck, they outdo rim pads. Nowadays they are the caca of all brakes. I wish my bikes had them.

  3. #3
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    I ride discs because I like good braking. They just work better. They are easier to setup, aren't affected by how true your rims are, and work in all elements. I'm working towards all my bikes having them. Only my old touring bike and my road bike do not, the latter probably never will. That's the one bike that doesn't need them. The touring bike has disc brake compatible hubs, but no tabs. Check the brake forum. This topic has been beat to death.

  4. #4
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    weight and riding style dependant

    I'm 220# and like to ride fast, so disc is a neccesity for me. A lighter rider doing XC type riding with dialed in V-brakes (there some pretty good setups out there) will probably be fine....But once you ride disc, you won't go back unless your a real weight weenie.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by KrisRayner
    But once you ride disc, you won't go back unless your a real weight weenie.
    Word.

    I do use a canti on the back of my Kmonkey (disc on the front); it works well enough that I don't care to upgrade to a new wheel and brake.

  6. #6
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    i like my v's, disc's defintally outperform them in just about every way possible but they remind me of how spoiled i am when i get on my full squish gearie.

    That was one of my many reasons building a ss... to make myself htfu

    pro's to discs: more consistent, longer lasting pads, easier to maintain, better power/feel, look sexy

    pro's to v's, cheap, remind you of old times, encourage learning to build wheels from wearing through sidewalls of rims, they teach you their is more to a good ride than fancy equipment (and i am a complete gear whore with every bike but the singlespeed)

  7. #7
    Mark
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    Stooopid UCI won't allow disks on 'Crossers.
    I'm still tempted to add at least a disk on the front of my new bike...
    I guess I could swap forks for a UCI race but I'm probably not gonna get to that level for a while anyhoo...
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  8. #8
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    Cons: Vee/canti/linear brakes will eventually wear your rim side walls away

  9. #9
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    If you live in dry country then good V-brakes are almost as good as disks and much lighter.

    However if you have mud to contend with you'll discover that rims are consumables and V-brakes (or any rim brake) don't grip so well when lubricated by slurry.

    Also if you ride in remote areas and buckle a rim slightly, you can still use your brakes if you have disk (or drum) brakes.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 5736' Highlands, Scotland

  10. #10
    CB2
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    Last year was my first year with discs. I put them on after this ride.


    I didn't really care for them. Yes, being able to stop is a nice thing, but when ever they got wet the would squeal and drag. As soon as things thawed out a bit, I put the V's back on. It was like a breath of fresh air; I loved the light feel at the lever with fresh cables, and no drag or squeal.
    Fast forward to Autumn: I put a suspension fork on my bike that is disc only, so go back to the discs, and now I love them. I'm over the fact that they are noisier, and just dig the power. Even put them on my back up bike.
    I do like the feel and adjustability of my cable actuated BB7's more than my hydro Juicy 5's though.
    If you live somewhere with a drier climate, V's are still a good option IMHO.

  11. #11
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    I love the wide hub flanges you can get with a ss non-disc rear hub, and I don't like riding in mud, but I have a bike with discs for snow. Discs are way better in any kind of slop, and don't tend to ice-up unless you are getting hub deep in it.

  12. #12
    don't try this at home
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    Quote Originally Posted by gte819s
    Cons: Vee/canti/linear brakes will eventually wear your rim side walls away
    i keep hearing this, but i've never ever had pads wear out the side walls of my rims. never, ever. i figure if someone is doing this, they must be using their brakes waaayyyyy too much or they are using crappy rims.

    i use v's. mostly cuz i just didn't see the need to spend the extra for them at the time i got my bike about 7 years ago. they work well enough, whether wet or muddy or dry. i've never had a problem with them not stopping me.

    downside is that many sus. forks don't have posts for them anymore. they've fallen out of fashion. almost like the u-brake and rollercams before them.
    will you rep me?

  13. #13
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    This has been beaten to death at the brake forum but it is nice to see specifically what SS riders are using. I'm on V's. The frame is an older Kona, no disc tabs but the Kona P2 fork has them. I might go with discs in the front sometime in the future. Water crossings + mud = screaming and slippery V brakes. I have to hold the brake down just enough to contact the rim while I ride to try and dry/clear up whatever is on it.

  14. #14
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    My SS has cheap Shimano V's and my geary has BB5's. I'm actually in favor of V's. The V's stop as good as my disks, are easier to modulate, and I hardly ever have to adjust them. As for the disks, I have to make some adjustment to brakes every other ride. The only advantage to having disk for me is that it is a little easier to take the front wheel on and off and its better in the wet. If I ever build up a complete XC bike from scratch, it will have V's for sure.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by moschika
    i keep hearing this, but i've never ever had pads wear out the side walls of my rims. never, ever. i figure if someone is doing this, they must be using their brakes waaayyyyy too much or they are using crappy rims...
    How about a Shimano XT wheelset from new to paper thin in one 24 hour race? The rims weren't crappy, the conditions were. My thumbnail can dent the rim - it hangs on my Wall of Woe with all the other broken bits.

    Brakes are there to be used. If you're not using your brakes then you're going too slow

    That's my racer hat speaking, actually I prefer to ride without using my brakes too. Don't know why, just feels right.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 5736' Highlands, Scotland

  16. #16
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    I like V's just fine. Then again, it's dry where I live, other than snow. Lotsa rain and mud, I'd probably feel differently. V's are simpler, cheaper, lighter, less complicated...definitely in keeping with the whole spirit of SS'ing. Not to say those who go with discs are in any way less 'pure'. My next SS will probably have them, since my wife's already does.

  17. #17
    one chain loop
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    i love 90's bikes, so i really have no choice but v's. no complains.
    everything sucks but my vacuum cleaner.

  18. #18
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    Mechanicals discs for me. Simple as v's to use/install/maintain but with more stopping power. The only con I see is the weight but if I cared about that I wouldnt be on a steel 29er.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doggity
    I like V's just fine. Then again, it's dry where I live, other than snow. Lotsa rain and mud, I'd probably feel differently. V's are simpler, cheaper, lighter, less complicated...definitely in keeping with the whole spirit of SS'ing. Not to say those who go with discs are in any way less 'pure'. My next SS will probably have them, since my wife's already does.
    If I ever get a new brand spankin' bike, it will have the canti posts. I love the Avid Shorty brakes. So much better in design than the old school truff from the late 80's early 90's.
    I live vees too, but the Avids rock it for me, like Def Leppard.

  20. #20
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    My Cantsi/ceramic Mavics work great in the spring, summer and fall but not so much in the winter. It mainly is an issue with the cables and arms freezing up. Still for 3 seasons it is fine.

  21. #21
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    I use both, disc on the SS and V's on the grocery getter. My last XC ride was a '84 Ritchey Assent with a horrible U-brake mounted below the bottom bracket. At best they were marginal for stopping so when I built my first new bike in 20 years I went with hydro disc and fell in love. I could actually stop in wet weather with the touch of one finger. After a few years I built a commuter with a base model Trek that came with V's and find that the stopping power was not bad and I don't have any issues I once had with the old U-brake. The only problem I had was when I bent the rear rim and had to adjust out the pads for the ride home. I would still go with disc over V's on any bike I would be riding in wet weather though.
    "You don't need a lighter bike, you need bigger muscles"

  22. #22
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    My singlespeed has v brakes front and rear at the moment,usually i run a disc up front with a sus fork but since the winter has arrived it is now rigid.I really dont mind v brakes and i have worn down the odd rim until it has split.Discs just seem to need CONSTANT adjusting and seeing as i am a bit of the old school (40 years) i dont mind retro.

  23. #23
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    ah! I think I am now going to work on my carbon SHark and put Avids on it. Its got old shimano cantis...
    Anyone interested in a very green Schwinn frame?

  24. #24
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    I currently run cantis, Linear brakes (Vs), mech discs, and hydro discs. After getting used to linear brakes and discs, the cantis really feel inferior.
    For a cheap light build, Avid Single Digit 5s or 7s combined with FR-5 or SD-7 levers are pretty sweet.
    As to performance, discs do perform better, but I'm fine with linear brakes just about everywhere except in snow. Though I do appreciate how discs eliminate most of the leaf-rub noise you get riding in the fall (leaves get caught in rim brakes).
    Discs are the way to go though if you have big downhills (none where I live).
    I would use discs on a new build primarily because it just keeps getting harder to run rim brakes (most new forks and frames won't run them). I do prefer my mechanical BB7 to my hydro BB5s (read the turkey gobble thread on BB5s), but the BB5s are the only hydros I own so it's not fair for me to judge other hydros based on them.
    Warning: may contain sarcasm and/or crap made up in an attempt to feel important.

  25. #25
    Got single track/speed?
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    Good discs outperform rim brakes. Do you need the performance?

    I'd take a pass on the mechanical discs and only use high quality hydros. The bad hydros are difficult to modulate and the mechanicals take too much lever effort for equivalent braking power. The light effort of hydros can really be appreciated when you're dog tired and have to ride a steep downhill.

    I do like the cleaner look of rim brakes on a rigid singlespeed, though.

    -Chuck

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