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Old 06-06-07, 03:29 PM   #1
KnoxBreezer
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Xtracycle and brakes...

So I've been salivating over an xtracycle for a while now. Plan to put the freeradical kit on my Breezer. My question has mainly to do with braking power when loaded.

The Breezer has a dyno hub and nexus 8 on it, so an upgrade to discs would essentially ditch these two very nice pieces from the machine (or cost me a bunch more to upgrade). The current V-brakes seem nice and strong when it's loaded with 40lbs of groceries... but I could definitely see myself pushing the xtracycle's weight limitations. They rate it for 150lbs... I weight 200lbs... so 350lbs total weight when "fully" loaded...

Looking and reading, seems like many xtracycles are riding with the standard v-brakes but some with front discs. For those of you with experience, do you have problems stopping when fully loaded on your xtracycle? It's moderately if not somewhat hilly around here. So for those of you that push your weight limits on xtracycles and have v-brakes, do you just "take it easy" and have no problems?
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Old 06-06-07, 03:35 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knox
....do you just "take it easy" and have no problems?
I'm running v's on mine, I push the wight limits regularly, and live in foothill country. I have to pay attention when loaded but have not had problems.

Who makes the dyno hub on the Breezer? Shimano's dyno hub will take a disk, it just threads onto the hub. I have disks on two of my shimano dyno hubs.
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Old 06-06-07, 03:42 PM   #3
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I would say when riding fully loaded aim high, think ahead, get the big picture, plan your braking zone, don't wait to the last minute to stop, anticipate, and you will be fine.
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Old 06-06-07, 04:01 PM   #4
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Post this question on the tandem forum - or just search that forum for a discussion on brakes.
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Old 06-06-07, 06:46 PM   #5
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I have standard brakes. Generally, when mine is heavily loaded I'm not a speed demon and tend to ride slower and more carefully, focusing more on the bike's handling. I ease up to stops slowly and braking isn't a problem. However, there aren't many steep hills around here and I don't plan to ride up and down steep hills with heavy loads even if there were steep ones.

Unloaded and hitting the front brakes hard when running fast can still result in an endo. Been there, done that.
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Old 06-07-07, 01:17 AM   #6
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I am currently using XT v-brakes on my xtracycle, they work fine... I have disc brakes on two of my other three bikes, so I'm aware of what you are missing... However, v-brakes attract less attention for theft, and work just fine. I operate my xtracycle above it's weight limit regularly (3-5 times a week) , and have not had braking to be an issue. I was plauged with the same dilema as you about 3 weeks ago. I am more than happy with the setup. Just keep your speed reasonable when loaded, and you won't have any trouble with a set of decent quality v's. (Ps, slaming on the brakes with 585lbs on that thing is like trying to stop a loaded 747 mid aircraft carrier landing)
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Old 06-07-07, 05:59 AM   #7
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Thanks for the feedback. I hadn't considered the similarity with tandems... and duh, we ride a tandem quite frequently!
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Old 06-07-07, 07:00 AM   #8
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I see a tandem in my LBS that has been modified with a reinforced fork and 2nd set of caliper brakes. Said to have better braking but uses up rims faster. Don
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Old 06-07-07, 11:05 AM   #9
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I have run the Xtracycle regularly at it's weight limit. The breaks that came with my 96 RockHopper were not enough, so I upgraded to V-Breaks with great success. I still take it easy on the big hills and plan my stops ahead, but that's cause the 150 lbs of cargo are my kids.
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Old 06-07-07, 08:49 PM   #10
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I think you'll overload and break your Xtracycle long before you run out of brakes!
Last Summer, I toured with my two daughters and lots of gear for self-contained touring on a tandem + trailercycle + cargo trailer and 4 panniers; total team weight was around 300 lb, so team + bike weight was 500 lb.

Basically, as long as you have proper weight distribution on both wheels (for traction), you'll brake as fast with a loaded bike than with an unloaded one ; you'll need to squeeze the brake levers much harder though! There still are limits to a very loaded bike: since you brake harder, you'll wear the brake pads much quicker and in a long downhill, you may overheat the rims and blow a tire.
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Old 06-08-07, 12:09 AM   #11
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You should be more than fine with V-brakes.
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Old 06-08-07, 11:29 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ollo_ollo
I see a tandem in my LBS that has been modified with a reinforced fork and 2nd set of caliper brakes. Said to have better braking but uses up rims faster. Don
Hmmm...nosir,I don't like it. They reinforced a road brake with a canti. If they would've swapped the road brake for a V they would've gotten the power they needed with alot less complexity. I think somebody just wanted to do it for S&G's.

For the OP,I'd go with discs,but i'm heavily biased.
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