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Old 08-12-07, 04:52 PM   #1
JeanCoutu
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Front coaster brake?

Ok, so my cargo/porter/rat bike has a broken canti braze on post thing, there's a 1/2 v brake on the left side for looking class, but it has no front brake to speak of.

Of course a drum brake would be cool but I don't own one. I do have a 36 hole coaster brake though, and I seem to recall these things take a lot of force to get any useful braking out of. I've seen that thread with the bike with the suicide brake thing, looks really class but would a coaster brake be workable with a V brake lever?
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Old 08-12-07, 06:42 PM   #2
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I don't know how to actuate a coaster brake except via the chain. I think there might be a need for mechanical advantage here, as the cranks act as lever arms on a coaster brake.
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Old 08-12-07, 11:00 PM   #3
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Well yeah obviously I'd have to make something as seen on drum brakes, what I'm wondering is if it would work reasonably well given a v brake lever and fingers to pull it. I seem to recall having to put a lot of weight on the pedal to get any useful braking out of said brakes, but that was a long time ago, and back then I was also much smaller/lighter.
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Old 08-13-07, 09:53 AM   #4
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Well yeah obviously I'd have to make something as seen on drum brakes, what I'm wondering is if it would work reasonably well given a v brake lever and fingers to pull it. I seem to recall having to put a lot of weight on the pedal to get any useful braking out of said brakes, but that was a long time ago, and back then I was also much smaller/lighter.
I really doubt you could get enough travel out of a lever to even start to apply the brake, let alone pull with enough force.
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Old 08-13-07, 10:13 PM   #5
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thats a cool idea, but i agree that a hand lever would not have anywhere near enough travel to actuate the coaster brake. i made the suicide brake bike, and there is alot of distance covered when i pull back on that handle to brake. your on the right train of thought though, thinking out of the box is a great start.

since you only have one brake boss how bout this, mount the brak arm and hand lever and instead of a brake pad, mount a hand with a certain finger extended, that way when you pull the brake lever you can "waive" to the cars that arent giving you your lane.
maybe use the brake boss to mount a light.
maybe use it to mount a really long antena w/ an orange flag on the end like the big wheels when we were kids.
i look at every hole in any part of any bicycle as a place to mount something.
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Old 08-13-07, 11:42 PM   #6
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I saw an odd front hub for sale on ebay once that was essentially a coaster brake hub, with a brake arm and a lever that went where the sprocket normally goes, intended to attach to a handlebar lever. ISTR it was a Bendix.

I think something can be hacked out of a normal coaster brake hub. A lever could be brazed onto an existing sprocket, with several holes for a cable anchor. Several holes may be needed for experimentation determining the proper amount of leverage needed to engage via a given brake lever. The hardest part would be setting the hub innards so that not so much travel is needed to engage the braking action.

ETA: You would also need some kind of spring to keep the sprocket/arm normally in the "disengaged" position.
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Old 08-16-07, 01:56 PM   #7
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I've installed the wheel that I'd laced with the coaster brake wheel on another bike, turns out it takes much less presure then I recalled, also the travel between freewheeling and brake engagement is less then I expected, but it's not an on or off thing with pressure determining braking force, there's some more predal travel between brake engaged and hard braking. So I dunno if this is truly doable, of course having yet to see even a single coaster brake used this way says alot about it.

Unfortunately, it seems I've ruined the bike in need of a front brake due to lack of same... So I won't be persuing this project. In any case thanks for the insight, I appreciate.

Damage on the bike in question can be seen here:
http://bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=333507
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Old 08-17-07, 05:37 AM   #8
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Front coaster brakes were used in the 30s---they were rare and bring a lot of $$$ on ebay.
Coasters can be adapted but they are a bit wider than most front hubs and the fork would need to be spread.
Shamino makes a type of hub brake---they call it a roller brake.Not imported to the USA.
sorry about your bike---but it's a good excuse to get a new one---sam
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Old 08-17-07, 04:31 PM   #9
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Front coaster brakes were used in the 30s---they were rare and bring a lot of $$$ on ebay.
Coasters can be adapted but they are a bit wider than most front hubs and the fork would need to be spread.
Shamino makes a type of hub brake---they call it a roller brake.Not imported to the USA.
sorry about your bike---but it's a good excuse to get a new one---sam
Again, I believe that you are thinking of a drum brake, they are still being made today (as in the shimano one that you mentioned) and never ceased to be produced. In fact i have one that came off of a 70's muscle bike.
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Old 08-18-07, 04:42 AM   #10
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I saw a pixie with a hand actuated coaster brake on the rear wheel. He called it a gravity bike there was no apparent way to pedal it. I don't know how well it performed. I think it was on chopperbicycle . net . including a photo.

Later,

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Old 08-18-07, 06:07 PM   #11
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I saw a pixie with a hand actuated coaster brake on the rear wheel. He called it a gravity bike there was no apparent way to pedal it. I don't know how well it performed. I think it was on chopperbicycle . net . including a photo.

Later,

Allan Greenblazer
Also, lever operated drum brake.
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Old 08-22-07, 10:48 PM   #12
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I really doubt you could get enough travel out of a lever to even start to apply the brake, let alone pull with enough force.
With normal hand brakes, usually cable-travel required and cable-force required are kind of opposites. You need more of one and less of the other, or vice versa. (Comparing centerpull canti's versus v brakes... one uses a lever that gives more force and one uses a lever that gives more pull.) Funny thing about coaster brakes is they're made for lots of force AND lots of travel, which is no problem if you're using your big leg muscles to power it but a big problem if you're using your little hand muscles.
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Old 08-22-07, 11:01 PM   #13
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They're available on a few models around here. Looks like they're actuated by a regular v-brake lever, but I haven't measured the amount of cable pull, so don't take my word for it.
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Old 12-22-07, 07:15 PM   #14
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So has anyone actually tried using a front coaster brake?
I should take down a spare Raleigh frame from the rafters and try putting one together.
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Old 12-23-07, 10:50 PM   #15
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I'm riding a bike with coaster brake. It takes a lot of force to activate those well- comparable to the force you put into pedaling. I think doing it with a hand brake would be a bad idea.
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