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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 10-28-11, 11:12 PM   #1
Telly
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Cycling with a coaster brake

Hello everyone,

A good friend and riding buddy recently purchase a bike with the Shimano Nexus 8 internal hub with built-in coaster brake. He lent me the bike so I could commute for the morning and I kept having the following problem (used to a standard 24 speed).

Every time I had to stop because of traffic/stoplight/etc, and the pedals weren't in the ideal position to start, I had to either push the bike by foot or get off and turn the pedals. Is there any trick in commuting with a coaster brake? I know this might sound stupid, but it became more than just annoying when I had cars behind me waiting for me to start off!

I did read in the forum that you can disable the coaster brake, but before I suggest that to my buddy, I would like some input from you guys!
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Old 10-28-11, 11:25 PM   #2
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I never had the problem. Left foot is my sweet foot and I coaster brake with my left foot forward, so the left pedal ends up around the 9 o'clock ready for my left foot to stomp on it when the light goes green.
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Old 10-28-11, 11:32 PM   #3
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It just takes a little getting used to and learn to stop the pedals in the horizontal plane so you can start off more easily.
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Old 10-28-11, 11:34 PM   #4
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You have to train yourself to brake in a manner that will leave your pedals in a "ready to go" position once it's time to roll. Usually this means braking with the opposite foot you prefer to start off with. It quickly becomes second nature.

If the pedal ends up too low for start up, you can easily "back it up" when stopped by applying light pressure on it while rolling the bike backwards slightly. After a little while you won't have any problems.
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Old 10-28-11, 11:46 PM   #5
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Now that I think about it, I wasn't using the coaster brake as much; the bike also has two v-brakes and force of habit has me using the rear v-brake instead...
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Old 10-28-11, 11:56 PM   #6
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Well, you'll still have to make sure the pedal is in your ready to start position when you stop, because as you discovered, you won't be able to freewheel it into position.
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Old 10-29-11, 03:02 PM   #7
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Astride the bike with one foot on the ground, just reach back and lift the rear of the bike by the seat tube so you can move the cranks into a better position with your free foot.
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Old 10-30-11, 07:13 AM   #8
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Thanks everyone for the info/tips!

Actually, I don't have to do anything since I don't own the coaster bike
... but the best advice I can give my friend is to stop using the rear v-brake and start using the coaster brake with the foot he DOESN'T use to start
... a little bit of practice and he'll be enjoying his new bike!
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