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Thread: Disc or Rim

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    Senior Member garysol1's Avatar
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    Disc or Rim

    First real mountain bike purchase for me will happen in the next few days. It will be used for general purpose XC riding. I would love your opinions on if I should go disc or save some coin and go with rim brakes. Discuss......

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    IMO, our technology has made it such that bicycles can use disc brakes, take advantage of that and get discs. I used to have cantis, even after putting brand new pads on and cleaning the rims they still sucked. My bb5s stop me instantly, love them. It's worth it.

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    Rim brakes will work just fine unless you think you'll be finding yourself in wet, muddy places. Rim brakes lose a lot of their stopping power when liquids are introduced into the equation. For general xc purposes, rim brakes will leave you completely satisfied, however, upgrading from rim to disc is a more arduous task than you'd think. You'll either have to rebuild your wheels with disc hubs or get a new wheel set, and depending on whether or not you choose hydraulic or mechanical, you'll need new brake cables. In other words, make your decision now, and save money (whichever way you end up going..)

    A beginner rider on a beginner bike probably won't find too much need for disc brakes too soon..
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    or you could buy the bike with disc ready wheels and just get rim brakes right now. Then you could upgrade to disc without much of a problem. The cable issue is not a big deal. By the time you decide to upgrade to disc, it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to replace the cables anyhow and cables are cheap. Quality V Brakes are better than crappy disc's anyday. If you want disc, upgrade to an Avid BB7 later.

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    Senior Member garysol1's Avatar
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    I don't want to upgrade brakes. What ever comes on the bike I buy will be staying on it for a long time. My money pit is my roadbike so the Mountain bike will stay status quo.....unless of course....... I fall in love with mountain biking...........

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    Disc brakes are more expensive, but its slightly easier to change brake pads on discs than on rims.

    I'd try demo-riding a bike with discs at a LBS to see what its like, then make your choice.

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    Lost in the Black Hills mx_599's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garysol1
    First real mountain bike purchase for me will happen in the next few days. It will be used for general purpose XC riding. I would love your opinions on if I should go disc or save some coin and go with rim brakes. Discuss......
    disc

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    PBR Racing RIC0's Avatar
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    Rim brakes went out in the 80's man. Go disk or go disco.
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    Senior Member mlh122's Avatar
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    my $0.02 would be probably if you can get a bike with nice discs (not cheapo ones) and you can afford it without breaking your bank then go for it. though when i got my bike my budget was a firm $500 and i couldn't get worthwhile discs in that range. so i got a bike with V brakes and disc-ready frame and wheels. when we got my wife's bike we were able to afford nicer stuff, her's has some kind of hayes hydros. to me the main differences are a huge stopping power difference (on hers i can make the front and rear tires skid on dry pavement, my v brakes can only skid on mud) and adverse weather performance. hers stop the same in rain or mud, maybe a little less if the rotor gets wet, but barely noticeable. my bike still stops in rain and mud, just takes a lot more distance. and mud/dirt causes some bad grinding noises and accelerated pad and rim wear, so i stop and clean the pads/rim every so often with a kleenex when riding in mud. so far there's never been a situation where i couldn't ride a certain path because my brakes weren't good enough. someday i may get some nice mech discs but for now my V's get me by.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RIC0
    Rim brakes went out in the 80's man. Go disk or go disco.
    No disco bands these days... closest I can come up with though is VNV Nation, Assemblage 23, and Funker Vogt...

    Well... maybe not Funker Vogt...

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    Go Fixed Gear, then you won't have to worry about brakes.
    Strike like an eagle and sacrifice the dove.
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    Lost in the Black Hills mx_599's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garysol1
    First real mountain bike purchase for me will happen in the next few days. It will be used for general purpose XC riding. I would love your opinions on if I should go disc or save some coin and go with rim brakes. Discuss......
    garysol1, please share your thoughts on brakes.

    how do you think riding a bicycle with rim brakes will make you feel? happy, sad, or even frustrated...?

    how do you think riding a bicycle with disc brakes will make you feel? joy, guilt...?

    do you have any fears, concerns, or past bad experiences with either rim or disc brakes that you can share with us?

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    Senior Member garysol1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mx_599
    garysol1, please share your thoughts on brakes.

    how do you think riding a bicycle with rim brakes will make you feel? happy, sad, or even frustrated...?

    how do you think riding a bicycle with disc brakes will make you feel? joy, guilt...?

    do you have any fears, concerns, or past bad experiences with either rim or disc brakes that you can share with us?
    Let me get on the couch here.....LoL
    Not sure about the happy or sad Doc but I would prefer disc if I had a bigger budget. What I need to figure out is this....Do I forgo better components to get Disc. I can get a higher end bike with V-Brakes that is a few years old or a newer lower end bike with a Disc.....That is my dilemma. I do not care about the cool factor but I may care about resale value if I decide to upgrade bikes in the future.

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    Lost in the Black Hills mx_599's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garysol1
    .....That is my dilemma.
    how is your quality of sleep? are you having trouble initiating sleep thinking about brakes?


    i wouldn't compromise components for discs in your range. get a nicer bike with rim brakes.

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    Pretty Hate Machine Weeks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerboyd
    Rim brakes will work just fine unless you think you'll be finding yourself in wet, muddy places. Rim brakes lose a lot of their stopping power when liquids are introduced into the equation.
    boy, that's for sure. i did my first muddy, wet, rainy riding a week ago and the first thing i noticed was how my brakes transformed from 'brakes' to 'speed modulators'

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    It really depends on where you ride. If it is going to be muddy get discs if not V-brakes will be fine.

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    Senior Member garysol1's Avatar
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    Ok, Thanks guys...My search continues.

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    Rim

    "What do I say to complaints that my brakes are no good?
    I tell you this, Anyone can stop. But it takes a genius to go fast"
    Enzo Ferrari
    origonaly sighted in Zin and the art of road bike matinence.

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    Disc brakes work- but not the cheap ones. Cable operated Discs come in a variety of qualities and Although the higher end ones are OK. They are not as effective as Hydraulic.

    Choice of Disc or rim brakes is impossible to answer. "V" Brakes work well. Before giving answer.

    What Make and model of Disc brakes are going to be used?
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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    Quote Originally Posted by kayakboy
    I tell you this, Anyone can stop. But it takes a genius to go fast"
    Enzo Ferrari
    Well, Enzo Ferrari just wanted to say something profound...I think an idiot with massive quads could go fast just as well as a genius, don't you?


    You don't need hydraulic disc brakes, sir. Don't be swept away by the tech geeks (such as myself) that say Hydro is the only way to go.

    This man is a roadie who is getting into MTB'ing. He's not a MTB'er that's looking for an agressive sled to rocket downhill or huck to no end. He would do just fine with a set of Avid Mechanicals or something along those lines.

    I do suggest that if you can't get a bike with Avid Mechanical discs...just stick with V-Brakes. The Avids are very easy to set up, maintain, and fix if need be. They perform very well too. In your case, I'd be more concerned with what kind of fork you will get with your bike purchase. Brakes are going to stop you eventually either way you go. Generally, people end up upgrading drivetrain stuff as it wears out, but forks and brakes tend to stay OEM longer unless you get "upgrade fever" like me. Last year, the Trek 6500 and Rockhopper Comp (I think) were the same price. The 6500 looked more "racey" and had a better rear derailleur, but I talked my pastor in to getting the Rockhopper b/c 6500 came with a Manitou Axel and the Rockhopper came with a Rockshox Tora Fork. There is absolutely no question there which is better. The Tora is a suspension fork...the Axel is a rigid fork that occasionally gives way to a bump or two.

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    Senior Member wheelhot's Avatar
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    Kay, if you are getting rim brakes, make sure its a Avid Single Digits, its simple, low maintenance and it works, but If you are getting disc brakes, make sure its not Hayes SOLE. Avids, Magura and Hayes (except SOLE) are all good disc brake makers

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    Hazardous biker Ricardo's Avatar
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    Dude,
    qualilty v brakes are better and cheaper than cheap discs. If you are entering the sport you dont really need discs, I try to advice people that their bikes should reflect their position in the learning curve.

    My point is that you wont have a real difference riding full xtr if you are a crappy rider. Get a simple bike and upgrade accordingly.

    Ricardo

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    NCAA - DUAL CHAMPIONS! a2psyklnut's Avatar
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    I agree with Ricardo, I would get the older bike with better components with rim brakes versus a newer bike with low end discs.

    Also, the comment on getting a better frame / fork is good advice. You'll upgrade the accessories before you change out the frame.

    The thing you don't mention is your budget. What is it?

    The reason? If you're talking about $1,000, then you start to enter the realm of decent discs and decent components. If you're talking $500, then the new discs are crap!

    My priorities:

    Good Frame - Heart of your bike, most critical
    Good Fork (suspension) - Will make a huge difference in how your bike feels
    Wheels - Can make your bike feel like an anchor or a gazelle.
    Drivetrain - Nobody wants crappy shifting
    Tires - Different tires can make or break a bike's feel.
    Brakes - Stopping is stopping. If you ride DH trails in the mud then you need discs. If you ride XC you don't.
    "Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "WOW, What a Ride!" - unknown
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    Senior Member garysol1's Avatar
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    Here is what I THINK I have decided on. My LBS has a 06 Gary Fisher Tassajara with the Manitou Axel Elite fork that he will let me have for $500.00 out the door. I know it does not have the best Forks or brakes but it should provide a solid enough platform to get me started and the bike is disc ready including hubs so if I decide I need better braking action I can easily upgrade. Very importantly is that it has the full warranty which a used bike would not.

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    one of the few things that I learn from MTB is get quality components, if you cant get a lower range of technology that is quality , cant afford a Juicy? Get a Single Digit instead

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