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How do you convert the front fork to disc brakes?

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How do you convert the front fork to disc brakes?

Old 06-28-08, 12:55 AM
  #1  
adamtki
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How do you convert the front fork to disc brakes?

My front fork doesn't have tabs for disc brakes but I'd like to convert to disc brakes. i've seen adapters on the internet but I can't see how they'd attach to my fork. do they use the eyelets which I currently use for front fenders?

And can any disc brakes work with any disc brake adapters? Thanks.
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Old 06-28-08, 03:09 AM
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They're usually mounted about 3-4" away from the end of the fork-ends. Typically you'd weld or braze on the disc-brake mounting tabs. Considering they'd be facing 500-600lbs of force under maximum braking, they're slightly beefier than rack eyelets.
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Old 06-28-08, 08:33 AM
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If you link to those adapters we might be able to help better.

My general opinion is not to do that at all.
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Old 06-28-08, 08:57 AM
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Swapping the fork is your best bet.
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Old 06-28-08, 01:12 PM
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Which brings up the question of why you want disc brakes? Do you ride in some of the extreme conditions where disc brakes has an advantage?
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Old 06-28-08, 01:44 PM
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Since the OP lives in the hilly and perennially wet Puget Sound area, disk brakes should be useful.
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Old 06-28-08, 01:56 PM
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Buy a disc-ready fork
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Old 06-28-08, 03:16 PM
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Originally Posted by adamtki View Post
My front fork doesn't have tabs for disc brakes but I'd like to convert to disc brakes.
If the fork legs are tapered I'd be really hesitant to do that. Disc (all hub) brakes stress the fork quite differently than rim brakes do. If fork legs are are evenly sized I might consider it.

Originally Posted by adamtki View Post
i've seen adapters on the internet
I've seen adapters to go between the different mounting standards (IS and post mount?), I've also seen the occasional fork that didn't have ANY brake fitting permantly attached, so mounting hardware for either rim brake or disc brake had to be assembled by the customer. But I've never seen a bolt-on generic disc brake adapter for forks. (there are som for rears though)
Originally Posted by adamtki View Post
do they use the eyelets which I currently use for front fenders?
Not very likely. Can't see that one attachment point would be enough.
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Old 06-28-08, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Mondoman View Post
Since the OP lives in the hilly and perennially wet Puget Sound area, disk brakes should be useful.
Definetly YES!

Swap the fork. There's lots of options out there. I can't imagine something you would use on the fork that would not be kludegy and hell and a maintanence nightmare.

On the rear the adapter brackets are not so bad. But that's if you can find them.

Frankly I'd suggest you just bite the bullet and get a newer disc equipped bike or go disc on the front via a fork swap and leave the rear as rim brakes.
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Old 06-29-08, 12:30 AM
  #10  
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I've seen several like these.

http://www.jensonusa.com/store/produ...e+Adapter.aspx

But after looking at them more, it occurred to me that perhaps they're for the rear brakes.

I live in a hilly and wet place as one poster mentioned. I commute all year round and I live off a steep road. My bike is heavier because it has an electric motor (curb weight with all the commuting gadgets is 50 lbs).

sounds like replacing the forks the best idea. It's a lot of work! But I guess it's worth it.
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Old 06-29-08, 01:15 AM
  #11  
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This looks like a good choice for a replacement fork.

http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...20Road%20Forks

My only question is if the carbon legs will be strong enough for hard disc braking.
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Old 06-29-08, 01:17 PM
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Stay away from carbon for a hub motor! I've been using this fork on a bike with an electric hub motor for over 2 years now.

http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...20Road%20Forks
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Old 06-29-08, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by adamtki View Post
I've seen several like these.

http://www.jensonusa.com/store/produ...e+Adapter.aspx

But after looking at them more, it occurred to me that perhaps they're for the rear brakes.
There are two different brake caliper mounting standards, IS and post mount. What you're looking at in the link above is an adapter to go from post mount to IS, not to turn a generic fork into a disc brake fork.

Originally Posted by adamtki View Post
sounds like replacing the forks the best idea. It's a lot of work!
Not really. A straight up fork swap would take me something like 20 minutes, and I'm not the fastest wrench around exactly. Setting up a disc brake - another half hour.

Originally Posted by adamtki View Post
But I guess it's worth it.
Only you can answer that. But as a rule most people are quite happy with disc brakes.
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Old 06-29-08, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by adamtki View Post
This looks like a good choice for a replacement fork.

http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...20Road%20Forks

My only question is if the carbon legs will be strong enough for hard disc braking.
The material in itself doesn't say that much about a product's final suitability for service. You can have rock solid CF and flimsy Cr-Mo just as easy as the other way around. Most available criteria for judging something like this(apart from reviews) is weight. Something considerably lighter than comparable products should be treated with some suspicion.

The potential risk I can see is that usually people expect light weight when they're buying CF components, so maybe there's a bit of added incentive from the manufacturer to skimp a little on the material. OTOH it's designed for the job, so it should be up to it.
If you're worried though, you could (assuming your frame takes 1 1/8") look for a rigid fork for a 29er MTB instead. That one should definitely be up to anything you can throw at it.
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Old 06-29-08, 07:49 PM
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Originally Posted by dwainedibbly View Post
Stay away from carbon for a hub motor! I've been using this fork on a bike with an electric hub motor for over 2 years now.

http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...20Road%20Forks
My motor is in the back wheel. I was just concerned about the extra weight that the front wheel has to stop. But I guess there are many riders much heavier than me.
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Old 06-29-08, 08:42 PM
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And any fork that's marketed as a CX fork should do just fine for commuting.
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Old 06-30-08, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by adamtki View Post
This looks like a good choice for a replacement fork.

http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...20Road%20Forks

My only question is if the carbon legs will be strong enough for hard disc braking.
I have that fork on my Cross-Check and it is reputed to be nearly identical to the Winwood Muddy. If it is in fact a relabeled Muddy, then it is designed for tandem use in addition to cyclocross, so it should be pretty strong.

My only concern with 29'er forks is that the axle-to-crown distance seems to be longer than a typical road/cross bike fork (e.g. Salsa CroMoto Grande, 468mm a-c, vs 400mm or so for the Winwood). I don't know if that would work well on a road/cross frame though I don't know if you mentioned what kind of bike you have.

Last edited by Metaluna; 06-30-08 at 09:03 AM.
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Old 07-01-08, 02:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Metaluna View Post
I have that fork on my Cross-Check and it is reputed to be nearly identical to the Winwood Muddy. If it is in fact a relabeled Muddy, then it is designed for tandem use in addition to cyclocross, so it should be pretty strong.

My only concern with 29'er forks is that the axle-to-crown distance seems to be longer than a typical road/cross bike fork (e.g. Salsa CroMoto Grande, 468mm a-c, vs 400mm or so for the Winwood). I don't know if that would work well on a road/cross frame though I don't know if you mentioned what kind of bike you have.
Thanks for the insight. I use it for bike commuting.
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