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Old 09-09-12, 09:55 PM   #1
tortron
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Aero or Non-Aero levers

Hi guy's,
I am nearing the end of my touring bike build and have the option of using either a set of nonaero or an aero set of brake levers.

(Bike is set up with DT shifters, drop bars and cantilever brakes front and back)

assuming the levers are identical in all other respects (cable pull, comfort etc.) are there any advantages or disadvantages to either brake type under touring conditions?
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Old 09-10-12, 12:45 AM   #2
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I wouldn't use either of the levers you are considering tbh. If you are using dt shifters and the frame has canti mounts then I would fit V brakes and Tektro V brake levers. Much better braking than cantis. The only reason to fit cantis is if you are determined to use STIs.
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Old 09-10-12, 04:56 AM   #3
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I find that I like the aero levers but mainly just because the cable routing is neat, clean, and out of the way. I also find cantis to work fine as long as they are set up properly. Vbrakes are fine as well, but I really don't see them as a big upgrade.

Bottom line, I'd keep the cantis and use the aero levers.
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Old 09-10-12, 05:44 AM   #4
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tortron, If the two sets of brake levers you have are equal in comfort and function it then becomes a personal appearance preference matter.

Brad
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Old 09-10-12, 06:46 AM   #5
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I used Modolo 919, pre aero levers with my cantilever equipped bike,
the other part of the score was the cantilevers them selves , Scott Petersen SE
front and rear so it was a strong system bringing the whole kit to a stop
from the brake hoods using my fingertips ...
a perfect match with old long ramp Randonneur bend bars.

MA of that brake lever type falls in between V and the other aero levers in cable pull ratio.
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Old 09-10-12, 06:51 AM   #6
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I would use aero brake levers for the cleaner look and less cable clutter.

Canti brakes work great if properly set up and installed with good pads like KoolStops. There is an on-going bit of misinformation by V-Brake proponents that they have more braking power and no drawbacks. Not true. Properly set up canti brakes work great. They also make it very easy to install large tires and continue to work if you rim gets out of true. In contrast, V-brakes have very little clearance between the pads and the rims, so if you wheel gets out of true they will rub the rim and perhaps make your bike unridable. If you like to slam on your brakes with very little effort, then perhaps V-brakes are your thing, but cantis are better for riders (like myself) who prefer to modulate their braking. I rarely ever slam on my brakes, but my cantis work just fine on the rare occasions where I need to do so.
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Old 09-10-12, 06:57 AM   #7
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For me the best reason to use aero brake levers is so I can also use in-line levers as well. I now have all my bikes set up this way.
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Old 09-10-12, 05:23 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by ClemY View Post
For me the best reason to use aero brake levers is so I can also use in-line levers as well. I now have all my bikes set up this way.
I hadn't thought of that one since I don't like in-line levers, but I guess that is a big plus for some folks.
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Old 09-10-12, 08:08 PM   #9
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I like the mirror mounting option that non-aero levers allow.
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Old 09-10-12, 09:03 PM   #10
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Non-aero levers have been gone for so long, it would be really cool to have them. The bike dorks will be gawking at them.
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Old 09-11-12, 01:21 AM   #11
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It is not true that Vs have more stopping power than cantis when used with road levers designed for Vs. These levers pull more cable/have less leverage, this removes the advantage that Vs have with MTB levers. I guess one or the other set-up is more powerful but it is not a big deal either way. What is worse is that the V/road levers have far worse ergo if you have small hands the fulcrum is almost outside of your reach when riding on the hoods.
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Old 09-11-12, 01:25 AM   #12
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I like aero levers, and they have very comfy grips on some of the designs. Seems like it might be easier to do repairs on the non-aero though. If part of the conceit of the touring bike is that it be designed to be easily maintained in the field, then I think that the cable routing on non-aero is probably superior.
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Old 09-11-12, 01:51 AM   #13
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In both cases V brakes need more cable pulled, so to go with them, V levers pull more
though they may not feel the same V road and V MTB levers have the same need to fulfill.

pull ratios may vary slightly.. hand power with fingertips moving lever from the brake hood on road levers is certainly less, than grabbing from the drops , or 3 fingers gripping an MTB leverr.
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Old 09-11-12, 08:29 AM   #14
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If you plan on using a bar bag, the cables on non-aero brakes may be a minor inconvenience. It depends on the size of bar bag and how you set it up. Certainly not a major issue either way. If you have to change a brake cable - its also easy with either. DT shifters are good!
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Old 09-11-12, 09:12 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by KZBrian View Post
I like the mirror mounting option that non-aero levers allow.

That's what I thought -- after I put aero levers on my bar-end equipped Trek 720, I saw that the Mirrycle brake lever mount was set up for STIs or old style levers. I assumed that the STI mount wouldn't work with my aero levers, so I kludged a mount like this (got the idea from Erick L. on this board): http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/p...093&size=large

Turns out that some aero levers have the STI type mount at the top that allow you to put on Mirrycle STI mirror -- a friend showed me how on his. But my kludged mount works, so I will keep it.

I do like the feel of the aero levers better than my old levers -- they give better braking power from the hoods.
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Old 09-11-12, 09:26 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Burton View Post
If you plan on using a bar bag, the cables on non-aero brakes may be a minor inconvenience. It depends on the size of bar bag and how you set it up. Certainly not a major issue either way. If you have to change a brake cable - its also easy with either. DT shifters are good!
Funny, I find just the opposite. With the Arkel bar bag the mounts conflict with the cable routing on aero brakes. Not a big deal to address though. Unless you want the retro look, get the aero. It's easy enough to feed a new brake cable through the housing without having to remove your bar tape and it's a cleaner appearance. This is an aesthetics issue, not a mechanical concern.
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Old 09-24-12, 07:43 PM   #17
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Looks like i will be sticking with the non-aero. I found the aero cables a hassle when breaking down a different bike to fit in my bag (not being able to completely remove the bars and pack them somewhere safer between the frame). Not that i fly often, but its something that stuck in my memory.
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Old 09-24-12, 09:08 PM   #18
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I would use aero levers. I find that the cables get in the way of opening my handlebar bag.
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