Bicycle Mechanics - Auxiliary ("Cross", "Interrupter") Levers for Drop Bars
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05-18-09, 01:57 PM
I would like to put these on a bike for my wife. What will be involved in this type of instalation? I checked Sheldon Brown but could only find this. http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/brake-levers-drop.html
Any help would help;)
05-18-09, 02:05 PM
Usually you just need to remove all the bar-tape and original levers and cable & housing. Remove cable from housing, then chop housing where you want to place the cross lever. Install cross-lever first, then regular lever. Install housing in between, thread through inner cable. Then final housing section to brake-caliper. Clamp cable to caliper and re-wrap handlebar.
Important thing to remember is to place the lever kinda high, almost as high as the bars. That way, when she uses them, her palms are BEHIND the bars, not ABOVE. Having your hands above the bars means you only have your thumbs behind the bars to support your weight flying forwards. You want to use them like MTB levers, with your palms behind the bars.
I've had plenty of customers come into the shop to have those levers removed because they broke their thumbs in a panic stop and they STILL ended up flying over their bars and crashing. One of them actually ended up under a car; luckily it stopped in time before running them completely over. Talk about adding insult to injury! :(
I've never used those but basically you'll have to remove the brake cable, cut the brake housing where you want the interrupter lever to be, put the cable through the aero lever and the small piece of housing you just cut off, then through the interrupter lever and then through the rest of the housing all the way to the brake calipers.
05-18-09, 02:15 PM
Here's some photos on how they should be installed... high:
If you set them low like the '70s suicide bars, that's gonna be the results.
05-18-09, 03:20 PM
also you don't need to unwrap all your bar tape, just enough to free up the brake cable and give you a place to clamp the lever, you can then cut and tape it before installing the lever. Then remove the cable from the housing, cut the housing, put the lever on, arrange housing and recable. Should be a fairly easy install.
One question I do have regarding these, is I planned to put just one on each bike (front brake only) for emergencies when I'm on the tops (which isn't very often). Are the left and right lever the same, or are they specifically designed for each side? Is it worth having both on?
05-18-09, 03:59 PM
Here's another view:
There are right and left specific, but each could probably work upside down.
05-18-09, 04:04 PM
I guess it depends upon the model, but they all look pretty symmetric. Only different in DieselDan's photo would be the split-slot where the clamp expands. Using one lever on one or the other side would just place the slot aiming up or aiming down. Shouldn't affect functionality in any way.
05-19-09, 09:33 AM
I will place an order today. Cheers Scott
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