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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 08-27-08, 07:38 PM   #1
Autospirit
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Why have inline brakes? (removal)

Even while offroad on my Poprad, I feel more confident riding in the hoods. Using the flat bar portion is just way too twitchy and uncomfortable for me. So the inline brakes are just an extra component taking up bar space. Is there a clean way to remove them? Although the thing I do like is the additional cable tension screw which allows for more clearance during wheel removal.
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Old 08-28-08, 07:08 AM   #2
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some racers prefer to hold the tops when they dismount into barriers, as it allows them to lean back further, getting them in a more upright position for running. for them it can be nice to have a way to slow down if they misjudge their speed going into the dismount.

some people who are used to flat bars don't feel comfortable laid out on the hoods all the time, and choose to use the tops a lot, but still like the laid out position sometimes as well. cross levers are a good solution for those folks as well.

for a whole lot of us they're not terribly useful or necessary, and they're pretty easy to remove. i'd recommend new brake cables at the very least, and since there's a break in your cable housing you'll either need to replace the housing (which requires unwrapping the bars) or stick something in place of the inline lever. i'd recommend some inline barrel adjusters:


once the cable's out there's usually just one allen bolt tightening the inline lever to the bars. most cross levers are hinged so they can be removed easily, without unwrapping the bar or removing the other lever. then slide the new cable in, stick in the barrel adjuster and route it through the brake.
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Old 08-28-08, 07:37 PM   #3
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Thanks for the thorough response! With cantilever brakes and STI's, I would think that it is necessary to run those adjuster tubes in the absence of the inline brakes in order to allow for tool-less wheel removal, correct?
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Old 08-28-08, 09:25 PM   #4
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most cantis, you can just unhook the straddle cable from one brake arm, the left one in this picture-
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Old 08-28-08, 11:04 PM   #5
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Bartop levers are great for steep descents, either on- or off-road. If you were smart you would have figured that out on your own.
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Old 08-28-08, 11:46 PM   #6
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most cantis, you can just unhook the straddle cable from one brake arm, the left one in this picture-
Right. if you are running them with enough slack to be able to unhook the cable that is.

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Bartop levers are great for steep descents, either on- or off-road. If you were smart you would have figured that out on your own.
On road, steep descent...whats that? No, I still prefer the hoods. Thanks for the words of wisdom though
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Old 08-28-08, 11:53 PM   #7
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The real question is, Is there a clean way to remove them?

Hint: The answer might have something to do with an allen wrench.
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Old 08-29-08, 09:40 AM   #8
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The real question is, Is there a clean way to remove them?

Hint: The answer might have something to do with an allen wrench.
and new cable housing
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Old 08-29-08, 10:23 AM   #9
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Bartop levers are great for steep descents, either on- or off-road. If you were smart you would have figured that out on your own.
Unless you're using monstrouslywide bars, I much prefer the drops in those situations. Better for everything except bunny hops, and even those the hoods are better than the flats IME.
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Old 08-29-08, 11:05 AM   #10
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Unless you're using monstrouslywide bars, I much prefer the drops in those situations. Better for everything except bunny hops, and even those the hoods are better than the flats IME.
During long descents on the road, having bartop levers adds a very comfortable alternative to the hooks. On a steep off-road descent or drop, using the tops allows you to put your weight significantly farther back than in the hooks. I prefer grabbing the bartop for dismounts rather than the left hood, the balance is slightly better being closer to the stem. For technical curvy sections, I agree that the hoods or hooks are better.

I'm not going to get evangelical about it, but I find bartop levers to be a very handy 90 grams to add to a cross bike. Are they absolutely necessary? Of course not. But despite their "unpro" appearance, many pros on both sides of the pond choose to use them; not just for cross, but also Paris-Roubaix and other cobbled classics.
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Old 08-29-08, 11:32 AM   #11
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Trust me, I don't not use them because of weight or concern about looking pro. I had them on my last bike, but didn't use them much, so I don't run them on my current bike, because it didn't come with them. I don't have an ultra aggressive setup to my bike (about 1.5" of saddle to bar drop) so maybe that makes some difference. To each his own.
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