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Poll: Battle of the Brake Levers

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View Poll Results: Battle of the Brake Levers
Tektro
8
32.00%
Cane Creek
3
12.00%
SRAM
0
0%
Shimano
13
52.00%
Other
1
4.00%
Voters: 25. You may not vote on this poll

Poll: Battle of the Brake Levers

Old 06-06-11, 01:06 PM
  #1  
Epicus07
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Battle of the Brake Levers

Need some comfortable brake levers for a new build. I tend to like riding on the hoods and flat tops. What do you guys think?

The contenders:

Tektro


Cane Creek


Sram S500


Shimano BL-R400


Other
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Old 06-06-11, 01:19 PM
  #2  
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I've found the tektro to be fine for me, but everyone's hands are different.
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Old 06-06-11, 01:22 PM
  #3  
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Old 06-06-11, 01:25 PM
  #4  
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You're a sick man
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Old 06-06-11, 01:26 PM
  #5  
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The Tektro and Cane Creek are quite similar...quite possibly identical, but I prefer the Cane Creek. Also you can get em with Tan hoods, which I like.
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Old 06-06-11, 01:32 PM
  #6  
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The new (current) tektro levers have hoods that are shaped a lot differently than the original ones, but they're equally as comfortable IMO. Not built quite as well but not bad. Also the current crop of tektro levers have levers that curve outwards to make the brakes easier to grab. Just FYI.
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Old 06-06-11, 01:39 PM
  #7  
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Originally Posted by mazdaspeed View Post
The new (current) tektro levers have hoods that are shaped a lot differently than the original ones, but they're equally as comfortable IMO. Not built quite as well but not bad. Also the current crop of tektro levers have levers that curve outwards to make the brakes easier to grab. Just FYI.
You're referring to two different models R100/R200 and R340/R341. Two different levers, each with two lever arm options.
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Old 06-06-11, 01:51 PM
  #8  
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I like the shape of Shimano levers, but that's just me...The BL-R400 and BL-R600 are very nice IMHO. And perhaps, more importantly, they look more the C&V part then the rest.
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Old 06-06-11, 01:52 PM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by ColonelJLloyd View Post
You're referring to two different models R100/R200 and R340/R341. Two different levers, each with two lever arm options.
I just looked at the levers and you're right. I ordered R200's and they sent me R340's lol...
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Old 06-06-11, 02:08 PM
  #10  
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The new ones blind me. I couldnt put something so "special" on my bike.
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Old 06-06-11, 02:16 PM
  #11  
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I like Tektros, mainly because of the long, wide, flat top. Very comfy place to rest the hands, and a nice smooth transition to the "ramps" on the handlebar. Very much like 10sp Campy Ergos, another fave of mine. Shimanos have never appealed to me - too much like pre-aero Campys: narrow, short body, abrupt transition from handlebar, and too small around for my long fingers.

FWIW, Cane Creek levers are also made by Tektro.

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Old 06-06-11, 04:05 PM
  #12  
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I've only had the Tektro and Shimano and I liked them both, but I voted Tektro because I think they look better for no particular reason.
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Old 06-06-11, 04:47 PM
  #13  
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I'll hold off on voting for a little while.
I'm presently using Tektro Long-Pull levers on my commuter, and I really like them. I have ordered a set of Cane Creek SC-5's in silver with the gum rubber hoods for my Marinoni (along with a noodle bar), so will be able to have a better gauge on my preference.

My fave's to date were my Campy Ergo 10sp circa 2000, which the Tektro's are reminiscent of.
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Old 06-06-11, 04:58 PM
  #14  
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Uhmmm......make sure you choose the one with easily repalacable hoods. You know what happens when the bacon starts to cook! 45+ bucks if you can even find them! Cachinggggg!

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Old 06-06-11, 05:03 PM
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The SRAM are a bit pricey but look pretty comfortable and have the same hoods as all other sram levers so they should be easy to replace.
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Old 06-06-11, 05:09 PM
  #16  
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I've had both the Tektro/Cane Creek and the BL-R600 (R400?). The Tektros have a plastic body which is light but I found pretty "hollow" and the horizontal play in the metal lever itself was disappointing. The body was big but possibly too big for me; I didn't feel as though I could get a complete grip. Couple that with the loose lever arm and it was an okay lever for the price but nothing special.

The Shimano R600 (never tried the R400 but they seem similar) I recently got and their quality is really great. The body is metal and solid with the right amount of heft, the hoods feel slightly thicker, and the design allows my hand to get a comfortable, firmer grip. The metal levers are nicely polished with little lateral play. Whereas the Tektros felt unnecessarily big, the Shimanos were compact and of distinguishably better quality. I do wish they had the quick-release mechanism. They do cost almost 3X the price but they seem to be pretty cheap on eBay though. If you like the Shimano Aero design from the 80's (105, 600, etc.) then the R600 will not disappoint.

I also want to throw out Gran Compe levers too. I found that the higher quality stuff from Dia Compe was surprisingly good. I have Aero Gran Compe levers and the hood material is phenomenal while the body is solid, maybe a bit chunky. They started the whole spring in the lever part design I believe.

The SRAM don't look CV at all... look like brifters without the "-ifters" part.

Last edited by Veloh; 06-06-11 at 05:15 PM.
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Old 06-06-11, 05:27 PM
  #17  
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Carbon record levers. Do it.
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Old 06-06-11, 06:59 PM
  #18  
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You mean to tell me it's about comfort. All along I thought it was how they looked.

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Old 06-06-11, 07:56 PM
  #19  
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Old 06-06-11, 08:21 PM
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They're not much to look at, but I like the bendy Tektros a lot. They fit my hands better than the RL100/200 and I can get great braking action from atop the hoods.

The Tektro site lists a gum hood for these but I've never seen them offered through any distributors (and they might not do much to make them look better anyway.)

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Old 06-06-11, 10:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Chris_in_Miami View Post
They're not much to look at, but I like the bendy Tektros a lot.
They are truly brake levers only a mother could love....Glad they work for you.
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Old 06-06-11, 10:59 PM
  #22  
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^ They're actually very ergonomic in a good way.
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Old 06-06-11, 11:20 PM
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They actually look like they would be a nice option. I just hate how ugly they are from the front
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