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Old 07-21-03, 02:36 PM   #1
Cyclone
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Front brakes

What is the purpose of the front brakes on a mtb? I feel like an idiot asking this question but I've never had a use for them and I've asked other people and they have no idea what the purpose is either.

What brought up this question is I was looking at bikes at the Sports Authority and I saw a Honda ~Gasp~ bike with front disc brakes and regular rear brakes. I was thinking to myself "Why did they put the disc brake on the front?" and then wondered what the point of front brakes were in the first place. I know that the front brakes on cars are mostly responsible for stopping the vehicle but on a bike trying to stop quickly with the front brakes = FLIP! heh
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Old 07-21-03, 02:41 PM   #2
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The front brake supplies the greatest amount of stopping power on a bike or a car or almost anything with forward momentum.
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Old 07-21-03, 03:06 PM   #3
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I use my front brakes most of the time. With a little practice you learn how to balance between stopping and flipping. As was mentioned before the front brakes provide the most stopping power, by using your front brake you avoid skidding your back tire which tears up the trail and hurts you ability to stay in control. Practice a bit with your front brakes and you will start using them most of the time, the trick is to make sure you keep your weight back.
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Old 07-21-03, 04:03 PM   #4
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I'm going front disc on my stumpie just because my new fork won't allow for my V. When istarted out biking many years ago i primarily used the back brake, but as i grew up i started to realize the benefits of using the front brake more, and a good combination of the two.
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Old 07-21-03, 05:26 PM   #5
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I feel like an idiot asking this question but I've never had a use for them ...
You should not feel like an idiot for asking but like one for not using them. (jk)

If you learn to use your brakes properly you will be using the front more then the rear. The only time I use the rear is to control the bike on technical descents or through a turn.

Also, if done properly you can lock up and slide the front wheel without going over the bars.

Another thing, if you are not using them then you are not going fast enough

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Old 07-21-03, 07:13 PM   #6
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Originally posted by dirtbikedude


Another thing, if you are not using them then you are not going fast enough

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Old 07-21-03, 07:36 PM   #7
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If you grab a fist full of brake at high speed of course you're going to flip over. You have to know the limits, and if the rear wheel starts to lift off, bringing it back down is only a matter of letting off the front brake a bit. 2 brakes is better than one!
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Old 07-21-03, 11:22 PM   #8
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I've never been able to figure out how you can go over the handlebars by using the front brake. You'd need alot of traction for that. I know when I do a 'stoppie' I have to throw my weight forward to get up on the front wheel.
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Old 07-21-03, 11:32 PM   #9
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Originally posted by skdsl
I've never been able to figure out how you can go over the handlebars by using the front brake. You'd need alot of traction for that. I know when I do a 'stoppie' I have to throw my weight forward to get up on the front wheel.
Wanna know how? Go really fast downhil and squeeze the lever really hard, really fast. weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!
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Old 07-22-03, 05:48 AM   #10
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It's all about practice. Braking is a learned skill, as many others!
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Old 07-22-03, 06:44 AM   #11
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I go over the handlebars all the time Its great fun..
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Old 07-22-03, 07:33 AM   #12
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I've been over the handlebars too. Not from using the front brake, but from hitting something or washing out. I try to crash as little as possible, as the injuries sustained stop me from riding.
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Old 07-22-03, 07:59 AM   #13
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I use about 65% front brake and 35% rear. It takes some practice, but I started using 50/50 and then just started using more and more front!

If your back tire starts skidding, you're using too much rear brake!

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