Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

Hydraulic Vs mechanical brakes

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Hydraulic Vs mechanical brakes

Old 01-29-22, 07:54 PM
  #1  
Marbles67
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Posts: 7
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Hydraulic Vs mechanical brakes

Hi all
we have a 2014 Trek 3700 it has mechanical disc brake
A friend suggested hydraulic brake upgrade
But my bike has shifter and brake lever in on combined unit so probably fairly expensive.
His bike was simpler then mine!

Is the gain Worth the price?
Marbles67 is offline  
Old 01-29-22, 08:00 PM
  #2  
chaadster
Thread Killer
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Posts: 11,462

Bikes: '15 Kinesis Racelight 4S, '76 Motebecane Gran Jubilée, '17 Dedacciai Gladiatore2, '12 Breezer Venturi, '09 Dahon Mariner, '12 Mercier Nano, '95 DeKerf Team SL, '19 Tern Rally, ‘21 Breezer Doppler Cafe+, ‘19 T-Lab X3

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2047 Post(s)
Liked 1,110 Times in 677 Posts
Just to clarify, there are cable-actuated hydraulic brakes, like the TRP HY/RD, so you could go that route with less cost expenditure than going fully hydraulic.

Whether it’s worth it depends on a lot of stuff you make no mention of at all, so it’s probably not.
chaadster is offline  
Likes For chaadster:
Old 01-29-22, 08:10 PM
  #3  
biker128pedal
Senior Member
 
biker128pedal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Eastern VA
Posts: 1,383

Bikes: 2021 Domane SL6, Black Beta (Nashbar frame), 2004 Trek 1000C being made an all arounder.

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 179 Post(s)
Liked 256 Times in 161 Posts
Looks like all cables. Altus level shifters. I’d just get new brake pads. Going hydraulics will only if I’d have to start replacing drive train parts. Like converting to a1X.
biker128pedal is offline  
Old 01-29-22, 08:15 PM
  #4  
Marbles67
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Posts: 7
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Good advice

Originally Posted by biker128pedal View Post
Looks like all cables. Altus level shifters. I’d just get new brake pads. Going hydraulics will only if I’d have to start replacing drive train parts. Like converting to a1X.
ok ya thank you for that...I'm just rehabbing a bad knee,but I have to keep riding long term.
Dr wants this over walking for strength.

Thank you that's great information
probably best to use what I have
Marbles67 is offline  
Old 01-29-22, 08:23 PM
  #5  
Koyote
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 5,181
Mentioned: 34 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4984 Post(s)
Liked 7,227 Times in 3,134 Posts
Originally Posted by Marbles67 View Post
Hi all
we have a 2014 Trek 3700 it has mechanical disc brake
A friend suggested hydraulic brake upgrade
But my bike has shifter and brake lever in on combined unit so probably fairly expensive.
His bike was simpler then mine!

Is the gain Worth the price?
Do your present brakes stop the bike adequately?
Koyote is offline  
Likes For Koyote:
Old 01-29-22, 08:45 PM
  #6  
Marbles67
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Posts: 7
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Do your present brakes stop the bike adequately?
there not bad ,I tried my friends and his hydraulic brake you seem to use less force.
I'm not sure there better?just different snd very little experience for measuring rhe two different types
Marbles67 is offline  
Old 01-29-22, 08:46 PM
  #7  
Koyote
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 5,181
Mentioned: 34 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4984 Post(s)
Liked 7,227 Times in 3,134 Posts
Originally Posted by Marbles67 View Post
there not bad ,I tried my friends and his hydraulic brake you seem to use less force.
I'm not sure there better?just different snd very little experience for measuring rhe two different types
So, you don't really have a complaint with your brakes, but you are considering replacing them - which, as you seem to understand, will be costly.

Does this seem sensible to you?
Koyote is offline  
Old 01-29-22, 09:11 PM
  #8  
Russ Roth
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: South Shore of Long Island
Posts: 2,091

Bikes: 2010 Carrera Volans, 2015 C-Dale Trail 2sl, 2017 Raleigh Rush Hour, 2017 Blue Proseccio, 1992 Giant Perigee, 80s Gitane Rallye Tandem

Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 790 Post(s)
Liked 636 Times in 480 Posts
I wouldn't bother. I'm quick to upgrade to hydraulic for actual MTBing or for more rigorous riding, for general riding at moderate speeds, there's plenty of other things to spend the money on that will make for a more fun bike and the discs aren't them.
Russ Roth is offline  
Likes For Russ Roth:
Old 01-29-22, 09:12 PM
  #9  
GamblerGORD53
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Elevation 666m Edmonton Canada
Posts: 1,972

Bikes: 2013 Custom SA5w / Rohloff Tourster

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 912 Post(s)
Liked 149 Times in 120 Posts
The triple play of downgrades. LOL.
Hydro, 1x and tubeless.
GamblerGORD53 is offline  
Likes For GamblerGORD53:
Old 01-30-22, 10:14 AM
  #10  
chaadster
Thread Killer
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Posts: 11,462

Bikes: '15 Kinesis Racelight 4S, '76 Motebecane Gran Jubilée, '17 Dedacciai Gladiatore2, '12 Breezer Venturi, '09 Dahon Mariner, '12 Mercier Nano, '95 DeKerf Team SL, '19 Tern Rally, ‘21 Breezer Doppler Cafe+, ‘19 T-Lab X3

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2047 Post(s)
Liked 1,110 Times in 677 Posts
Slapping a pair of Juin Tech M1s would be quick and inexpensive; the caliper pair (and 2x 6-bolt rotors) is like $170 off Amazon. The OP would use their existing levers, cables, and rotors, and probably wouldn’t even need new cable housing, so it’s a super simple R&R job.
chaadster is offline  
Likes For chaadster:
Old 01-30-22, 10:36 AM
  #11  
JehD
Senior Member
 
JehD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: New Mexico
Posts: 321

Bikes: 2020 Electra Cruiser 7D - 2021 Mongoose Dolomite ALX - Rusty Huffy and a broken Giant

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 107 Post(s)
Liked 118 Times in 79 Posts
Ive had both Hydro and mechanical. The nice hydros were just awesome and my mechs do get the job done but they are different bikes and different uses.

IT sounds like in your case with the combined shfters it might be more expensive depending on what group set you have, but I just picked up a left and right shifter for my fatbike ( I wanted rapidfires vs the ones that came on it) for under $40. These were more entry level Altus shifters but they are Shimano but I never had issues in the past. Better ones are still under $100.
JehD is offline  
Likes For JehD:
Old 01-30-22, 02:04 PM
  #12  
Marbles67
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Posts: 7
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
So, you don't really have a complaint with your brakes, but you are considering replacing them - which, as you seem to understand, will be costly.

Does this seem sensible to you?
Perfect 😍

Last edited by Marbles67; 01-30-22 at 03:05 PM. Reason: Just to be fair
Marbles67 is offline  
Old 01-30-22, 02:20 PM
  #13  
phughes
Senior Member
 
phughes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 2,405
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 710 Post(s)
Liked 706 Times in 425 Posts
Originally Posted by Marbles67 View Post
if you're not interested in lending help with out being condescending drift
I thought he gave sensible advice.
phughes is offline  
Likes For phughes:
Old 01-30-22, 02:29 PM
  #14  
tyrion
Senior Member
 
tyrion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 3,737

Bikes: Breezer Radar

Mentioned: 27 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2001 Post(s)
Liked 1,528 Times in 738 Posts
Originally Posted by Marbles67 View Post
there not bad ,I tried my friends and his hydraulic brake you seem to use less force.
I'm not sure there better?just different snd very little experience for measuring rhe two different types
Hydraulics are better - there is less slop in the system when compared to wires and wire housings. You have to decide if it's worth the money to upgrade.

It's a fair amount of money. I wouldn't - I'd just get bigger rotors if you want more braking power.
tyrion is offline  
Old 01-30-22, 03:09 PM
  #15  
Iride01
MotuekaCascadeChinook
 
Iride01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 10,656

Bikes: '20 Tarmac Disc Comp '78 Raleigh Competition GS

Mentioned: 40 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4305 Post(s)
Liked 2,865 Times in 1,994 Posts
It wouldn't be worth it to me.

If you are like I was when I finally got hydraulic brakes, for quite a while I had a learning experience to overcome. 50 years of habits had me using too much braking force and several times the front wheel would delivering the maximum possible braking and the rear wheel would be locked up trying to swap ends with the front wheel. One of those times I wound up taking a tumble. Probably wouldn't have been a good thing if I was rehabbing a knee.

Still I like the hydraulic brakes now that I've learned how much force to put into the brake levers. But I'd probably never think swapping from any other to hydraulic worth the price.

If you were considering a entire new bike, then I go for the hydraulics just for the ease of maintenance over other types. But if the bike I wanted didn't come with them, then it'd not be a big deal.

Don't read condescension in posts from others. It likely wasn't intended. When you read a reply, it's you you are hearing the voice of in your head. Not the person that wrote it, so you really don't know how they said it and in what tone they meant it.
Iride01 is offline  
Old 01-30-22, 03:22 PM
  #16  
cxwrench
Senior Member
 
cxwrench's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Nor-Cal
Posts: 3,067

Bikes: lots

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1516 Post(s)
Liked 2,177 Times in 1,134 Posts
If you learn how to adjust them properly there's really no need to 'upgrade' to hydraulic. Most people including many shop mechanics don't have any idea how to do this.
cxwrench is offline  
Likes For cxwrench:
Old 01-30-22, 03:54 PM
  #17  
RH Clark
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 457
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 237 Post(s)
Liked 233 Times in 118 Posts
Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
So, you don't really have a complaint with your brakes, but you are considering replacing them - which, as you seem to understand, will be costly.

Does this seem sensible to you?
EXACTLY!
No reason to change anything unless what you have isn't working for how you use it. Even then you need to know if what you are changing will solve the problem first, if it's an expensive change.
Otherwise, you are just trying to impress someone else or feel less inadequate for your choices.
RH Clark is offline  
Old 01-30-22, 04:36 PM
  #18  
chaadster
Thread Killer
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Posts: 11,462

Bikes: '15 Kinesis Racelight 4S, '76 Motebecane Gran Jubilée, '17 Dedacciai Gladiatore2, '12 Breezer Venturi, '09 Dahon Mariner, '12 Mercier Nano, '95 DeKerf Team SL, '19 Tern Rally, ‘21 Breezer Doppler Cafe+, ‘19 T-Lab X3

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2047 Post(s)
Liked 1,110 Times in 677 Posts
Geez…$170 for a hydro brake upgrade does not really seem like a lot of money to me…not given how important they are, and not given it’s 2022. I’m pretty sure I paid more upgrading to XTR V-brakes when those came out in 1996; if memory serves, those were $125/pr retail.

$500+ for something like Paul Klampers or Yokozuna Ultimos would be expensive…
chaadster is offline  
Old 01-30-22, 05:33 PM
  #19  
CAT7RDR
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: Hacienda Hgts
Posts: 1,596

Bikes: 1999 Schwinn Peloton Ultegra 10, Kestrel RT-1000 Ultegra, Trek Marlin 6 Deore 29'er

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 625 Post(s)
Liked 1,348 Times in 685 Posts
$280 for me to upgrade to Deore 4 piston brakes.
Was it worth it?
Yes, stopping fast without fade is a good thing.
CAT7RDR is online now  
Old 01-31-22, 12:38 AM
  #20  
Rolla
Victimless Criminal
 
Rolla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2020
Posts: 2,383
Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1047 Post(s)
Liked 2,494 Times in 1,117 Posts
Ride what works for you and what you feel is worth your money, but you'll rarely hear of people trading in their hydros for cable brakes. Just sayin'.

Last edited by Rolla; 01-31-22 at 12:41 AM.
Rolla is offline  
Old 01-31-22, 02:42 PM
  #21  
veganbikes
Clark W. Griswold
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: ,location, location
Posts: 9,888

Bikes: Foundry Chilkoot Ti W/Ultegra Di2, Salsa Timberjack Ti, Cinelli Mash Work RandoCross Fun Time Machine, 1x9 XT Parts Hybrid, Co-Motion Cascadia, Specialized Langster, Phil Wood Apple VeloXS Frame (w/DA 7400), R+M Supercharger2 Rohloff, Habanero Ti 26

Mentioned: 42 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2855 Post(s)
Liked 2,032 Times in 1,350 Posts
I wouldn't put a bunch of money into that bike, ride it into the ground and save your money for something that comes with everything you want and overall better parts. Your brakes with some adjustment and some better pads could work a bit better.
veganbikes is offline  
Old 02-01-22, 05:00 PM
  #22  
trucklet
good cheap fun
 
trucklet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Location: Lansing, MI
Posts: 23

Bikes: 2017 Specialized Fuse, '75 Schwinn Voyageur II, '86 Schwinn LeTour, '86 Cannondale SR800 pre-Black Lightning, '90s Cannondale H200, '90 Trek 720, '76 Schwinn Super Le Tour

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked 15 Times in 6 Posts
I would try new pads and rotors before changing everything out.
trucklet is offline  
Old 02-01-22, 06:50 PM
  #23  
fooferdoggie 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 1,582
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 432 Post(s)
Liked 552 Times in 330 Posts
Originally Posted by CAT7RDR View Post
$280 for me to upgrade to Deore 4 piston brakes.
Was it worth it?
Yes, stopping fast without fade is a good thing.
Plus one finger braking thats alone was worth it. I upgrade my commuter just because our tandem got the 4 piston Deore and I loved the feel. my maguras were Fien but one finger braking with gloves in winter are great.
fooferdoggie is offline  
Old 02-08-22, 03:10 PM
  #24  
Calsun
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2021
Posts: 478
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 193 Post(s)
Liked 106 Times in 84 Posts
The move to hydraulic disc brakes made cable routing far less of a problem and easier to have it inside the frame for a better cosmetic appearance. Originally the disc brakes were considered important only for tandem bikes where the rider weigh was doubled. It would be advantageous with sewup tires where it is possible to have a problem with heating up the rims and softening the rim cement on a long steep descent. Now it is a good way to get people to spend more for a new bicycle.

My 2001 Trek 5200 has caliper brakes and they work perfectly well at slowing and stopping the bike.
Calsun is offline  
Old 02-09-22, 06:17 AM
  #25  
chaadster
Thread Killer
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Posts: 11,462

Bikes: '15 Kinesis Racelight 4S, '76 Motebecane Gran Jubilée, '17 Dedacciai Gladiatore2, '12 Breezer Venturi, '09 Dahon Mariner, '12 Mercier Nano, '95 DeKerf Team SL, '19 Tern Rally, ‘21 Breezer Doppler Cafe+, ‘19 T-Lab X3

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2047 Post(s)
Liked 1,110 Times in 677 Posts
Originally Posted by _ForceD_ View Post
I have always questioned the necessity for disc brakes (hydraulic or mechanical) vs. rim brakes. In my opinion it really comes down to the amount of tire that you have in contact with the ground. And that’s where your stopping really happens. Except for in a very few extreme situations, I have always been able to lock up with wheels with my properly adjusted rim brakes. But the amount of tire you have in contact with the ground doesn’t change. Once the wheel is locked up in a braking situation…it doesn’t matter what kind of brakes you have. Your stopping ability comes down to the amount of tire on the ground. Now I said “extreme” situations. If you’re doing a lot of mountainous descents, wet hilly environments, freezing with ice and snow, etc. Certainly you’re better off with disc brakes. But if you’re riding in relatively flat or rolling hills terrain…maybe you don’t ride when it’s wet…what’s the need for disc brakes? Understand that I don’t have anything against them. If you want them…more power to you. But if your rim brakes are properly adjusted and working as they should be, and you ride in an area where they are sufficient…why change?

Dan
wrong thread. please delete
chaadster is offline  
Likes For chaadster:

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.