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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 11-28-11, 12:22 AM   #1
Javaslinger
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Brakes not working well when wet

I'm a rookie cyclist and I recently got a 2011 Kona Jake. Love it...

Took it out for some light mountain biking over the weekend. Nothing to steep or rough. Anyway, there were some muddy, wet parts and my brakes quickly diminished in their ability to bring me to a quick halt!

Is this normal? Do I need a tune up? Different brakes?

Thanks for any advice,

Ken
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Old 11-28-11, 01:30 AM   #2
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I think your experience is one of the reasons there are people, myself included, that are excited about the trend of disc brakes on cross bikes.
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Old 11-28-11, 02:29 AM   #3
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Get some Kool Stop Salmon pads. Your experience is normal, but good pads help a lot.
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Old 11-28-11, 06:43 AM   #4
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Why are cross bikes worse in wet conditions than other bikes?? I thought cross races were often featuring wet, muddy conditions?
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Old 11-28-11, 06:46 AM   #5
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Internal drum brakes for the win! \o/

On a more serious note, Javaslinger, a tuneup could be in order. Checking the brakepad alignment is a good start, making sure you get full contact of the pads (both sides) on the disc, on both wheels.

If that passes inspection, you could look into upgraded pads. Perhaps there is something on the market that works like a tire tread, pushing the water away so that the pad gets better contact? A chat with your local bike mechanic/guru would not hurt either, especially if he/she has wet/muddy riding experience.

Last edited by digitalmouse; 11-28-11 at 07:00 AM.
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Old 11-28-11, 08:50 AM   #6
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Salmon pads and ensure everything is set up properly.
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Old 11-28-11, 10:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Javaslinger View Post
Why are cross bikes worse in wet conditions than other bikes?? I thought cross races were often featuring wet, muddy conditions?
No need to slow down.
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Old 11-28-11, 01:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
I thought cross races were often featuring wet, muddy conditions?
Yes , But same conditions for all contestants.. AND they are not out in traffic,
so the slow braking doesn't put them out getting Hit in intersections by Cars.

To OP: KS Salmon compound pads are a good low cost improvement.
+1 on getting the mechanics right on the brake setup and adjustment.
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Old 11-28-11, 02:08 PM   #9
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No need to slow down.
Ooooooh! I want to see you take a muddy, off-camber hairpin turn at 25mph!
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Old 11-28-11, 02:39 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Why are cross bikes worse in wet conditions than other bikes?? I thought cross races were often featuring wet, muddy conditions?
I wouldn't say that they are worse than other bikes, except bikes with disc brakes. All rim brakes get worse when muddy.

Another factor that you should consider here is your tire tread. If the tire is packed up with mud, it won't really matter how well the brakes stop the wheel from spinning, as muddy stopping distance is often limited by traction.
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