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  1. #1
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    How do you brake?

    I've been riding for a while and never notice how I brake. I use the index and middle finger for both front and rear brake. But now when trying some harder moves (those on spaceman.cz!) it seems I dont have enough grip on the handle bar with 2 finger on the brake lever!
    I watch some of the pros' clips closely and saw that they only use the index finger. Doesn't this make your hands too far out to the side of the bar?? Is this how most of you brake and I just have to get used to it?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    1 finger braking is the way to go. Allow better grip on the bar. With hayes and avids you adjust the reach so the brake locks when the lever gets close to the bar. Then you do not have a reach issue

  3. #3
    ÖöÖöÖöÖöÖö Dannihilator's Avatar
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    Me, I only use one finger on each brake lever.
    Strike like an eagle and sacrifice the dove.
    Words and Stuff.

  4. #4
    Long member...oh wait....
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    Yea, Usually one finger is enough when you have 8" rotors (maelstrom) but for the rest of us, we use two............Oh man........
    "The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart."
    -Iris Murdoch, writer (1919-1999)

  5. #5
    NCAA - DUAL CHAMPIONS! a2psyklnut's Avatar
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    One finger most of the time! I have some aftermarket levers made by the now defunct Razor Rock Racing and love them. I'll probably get some new Dangerboy levers for my new brakes.
    www.dangerboyusa.com

    Not bad for $54.00 US.

    L8R
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  6. #6
    NCAA - DUAL CHAMPIONS! a2psyklnut's Avatar
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    Try this link if that one above isn't working: http://www.dangerboyusa.com/dangerboy_bike_parts.htm

    L8R
    "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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  7. #7
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    how do you brake? with fingers
    it doesn't really matter if one or two finger braking as long as it works for you and your comfortable with it.

  8. #8
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by namaste1978
    Yea, Usually one finger is enough when you have 8" rotors (maelstrom) but for the rest of us, we use two............Oh man........
    Yes but proportionately with type of riding I do compared to my size I betcha it require similar forces to xc with 6". The 8 in rotor is trying to stop a 270pnd man moving very fast down a mountain. The 6" is trying to stop someone lighter doing xc.

    BEsides...on my xc bike I have 6" rotors

  9. #9
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reggie
    how do you brake? with fingers
    it doesn't really matter if one or two finger braking as long as it works for you and your comfortable with it.
    Reach down and grab onto the rubber

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelstrom
    Reach down and grab onto the rubber
    As a kid I had an old BMX bike with no brakes. I would just use my foot on the rear tire to slow down

  11. #11
    bac
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    I use only one finger - and the middle one @ that. I seem to be relatively unique with this technique, but it really works for me. It allows me to get nearly a full grip on the bars, while still having one finger on the brakes @ all times. It also allows me access to the trigger shifter (when on a geared bike) @ all times.

    Try it, you may just like it!

  12. #12
    snow DjRider04's Avatar
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    Ha! I use my middle finger too. I tryed using my index, but it just doesnt feel right....plus all of the grip is on the outside of the bars. Using your middle finger gives you grip on both ends, plus your middle finger tends to have more leverage/power.

  13. #13
    Pup
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    Definitely a matter of personal choice and strength. I use my index and middle finger. The muscles in my forearms eventually developed so that I can brake and still hold the bike firmly with the ring/pinky fingers and thumb. That's the way it works with pretty much everything. You just get used to it.

  14. #14
    The Man. FoX Rider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by namaste1978
    Yea, Usually one finger is enough when you have 8" rotors (maelstrom) but for the rest of us, we use two............Oh man........
    Umm....no. 6" rotors can stop you fine on DH. Mine certainly does. Besides the 6" is in the rear and the 8" is up front. Considering your supposed to use more front then rear. (What is it 75%-25% or 70%-30% I've heard both?) Think its 75-25 Front-Rear.

    To answer the thread topic. I am use to using two fingers because my old bike with V-Brakes. Whenever I can I try to use one finger with my Hayes Nines. But since the lever kept moving back to the handle bar I found it would hit my middle and ring finger before it grabbed any of the rotor. Hopefully now with the Hayes Mags it'll be different. Haven't had a good ride with them yet. Just a ride home from the LBS on friday.

    Sorry that is confusing...

  15. #15
    Humaniod Typhoon -Stretch-'s Avatar
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    i use my middle finger too...its fun
    04 specialized hardrock xc with eggbeater sl pedals
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  16. #16
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    I tried my middle finger for a while but too many people staring at me so I stopped and asked what's everybody else's doing Might as well try it some more or go with index.

  17. #17
    Humaniod Typhoon -Stretch-'s Avatar
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    i use my middle cause my index and thumb are mostly on my shifters...both sides are grip shift...and its fun to give ppl the middle finger inadvertantly
    04 specialized hardrock xc with eggbeater sl pedals
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by FoX Rider
    Umm....no. 6" rotors can stop you fine on DH. Mine certainly does. Besides the 6" is in the rear and the 8" is up front. Considering your supposed to use more front then rear. (What is it 75%-25% or 70%-30% I've heard both?) Think its 75-25 Front-Rear.

    What? Have I been doing it all wrong? Usually when going down an incline I dont use the front at all because I choose to not go over the handlebars or have that wheel slip out from under me. Last weekend I had a heck of a time on my ride because my rear brake went out (air in hydraulic line and put off bleeding it one too many times I guess) and steep loose gravel hills with only a front disk opened up a whole new dimention to the sport. Seriously though, are you really supposed to use the front more than the rear when you are out in the rough going down big hills? Or maybe front more for XC riding and rear more in the down hill?
    I know the front brake can supply 2-3x the stopping power of the rear on a solid surface because of weight transfer to the front, but that isnt really something you want all the time is it?




    And on the topic, I use index and middle finger. That is what feels comfortable to me.

  19. #19
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    When doing dh you use the front brake ... 80% of the time give or take. It allows you to control your turns more while maintaining speed. I almost never use my rear when doing dh. I use front for almost everything except power sliding. In fact I can ride without using my rear at all in really steep stuff. Feel much more confident and fast using front in sketchy situations.

  20. #20
    The Man. FoX Rider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RoadKill
    What? Have I been doing it all wrong? Usually when going down an incline I dont use the front at all because I choose to not go over the handlebars or have that wheel slip out from under me. Last weekend I had a heck of a time on my ride because my rear brake went out (air in hydraulic line and put off bleeding it one too many times I guess) and steep loose gravel hills with only a front disk opened up a whole new dimention to the sport. Seriously though, are you really supposed to use the front more than the rear when you are out in the rough going down big hills? Or maybe front more for XC riding and rear more in the down hill?
    I know the front brake can supply 2-3x the stopping power of the rear on a solid surface because of weight transfer to the front, but that isnt really something you want all the time is it?




    And on the topic, I use index and middle finger. That is what feels comfortable to me.
    As Mael said you can get away with ONLY using front on DH. You just need to modulate (?Spelling?). My first time DHing I only used my rear brake. For one run and it caused me to skid and loose control multipul times. Then I can remember my friend who was riding with me (DjRider04) told me to use my front brake. Ever since I've been using my front much more then the rear. Plus rear brake leaves skid marks and that digs up the trails. I always yell at my friends when they dig up the trails.

    I just want to say HFX Mags modulate (?Spelling?) MUCH MUCH better then my old HFX-Nines.

  21. #21
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    Wow, so I really have been doing it all wrong. I hang my butt way back over the seat and dont skid much using the rear brake, but I will start using the front alot more and see how that works for me. I have been using the rear so long that last weekend without it was really something!

  22. #22
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RoadKill
    Wow, so I really have been doing it all wrong. I hang my butt way back over the seat and dont skid much using the rear brake, but I will start using the front alot more and see how that works for me. I have been using the rear so long that last weekend without it was really something!
    Be prepared to flip. Braking is a balance between modulation and switching between front a back. It really is pretty difficult to think about. It just starts to come naturally once you get over the fear of flipping forward and start to use the front brake.

    Enjoy new found speed

  23. #23
    mmm babaghanouj. rasheed's Avatar
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    with my hayes mechs that i used to have on my bike, one finger braking wasn't really an option if i wanted to stop. slowing down, no problem... but stopping, forget about it.

    my new hayes hydros though, are a whole other animal. one finger braking is a sinch. i usually have my index fingers on the brake lever... occasionally i'll have my middle fingers on there, but mostly it's the indexes. i only use two fingers when i really want to stop abruptly to pull an endo or something - i think i do that out of instinct or habit more than need though.

    as for the front/rear braking issue... i usually use more front than rear when i want to slow down quickly or stop. but on certain occasions when i just want to slow down just a tad, i'd drag my rear (without locking of course) just to bleed off some speed. i usually do this on steep descents or on descents where there's a turn in the trail just at the bottom of the hill.
    current ride: 2003 norco vps fluid 3.0 (custom build).



  24. #24
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    i only use one finger sometimes its the index sometimes i feel like flipping the trail off for making me brake..i use my middle hahahahaa. but then again i have saint 8" rotors so. got to love 8 inch hydraulic disc brakes.../


    peace
    An6

  25. #25
    Senior Member sarsparilla's Avatar
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    With my avid mechs I use index and middle fingers. with my levers that I have and the way that they're set up it feels like the lever pulls back into my finger so I just use both of them.

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