Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

Rear tire skidding

Notices
Road Cycling ďIt is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.Ē -- Ernest Hemingway

Rear tire skidding

Old 07-24-21, 04:03 AM
  #51  
Badger6
Obsessed with Eddington
 
Badger6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Brussels (BE) 🇧🇪
Posts: 954

Bikes: '16 Spesh Diverge, '14 Spesh Fatboy, '18 Spesh Epic, '18 Spesh SL6, '21 Spesh SL7, '21 Spesh Diverge...and maybe n+1?

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 348 Post(s)
Liked 351 Times in 234 Posts
I think we should separate two things. Emergency braking (max braking) and normal braking.

There are a few folks here that keep banging on about emergency braking, which is a very specific situation and one that involves surprise, which therefore means without well developed skills a rider will be unable to stop safely. The suggestion (fact) that it is only (best) achieved with the front brake is correct. Physics and lots of observation reflect this. But, emergency braking should be a rare event, if it isn't rethink how you ride and how attentive you are when riding.

Braking under normal circumstances should be planned, meaning normal braking shouldn't be a surprise...if it is, it is emergency braking. See above. Normal braking is 70/30 (for sake of using hard numbers) front/rear bias. If 99.999999% of a rider's braking is normal, they should be using their brakes in this fashion and developing the skills to ratio the brakes back and forth front to rear as required for the surface or situation. If properly developed, when an emergency situation occurs, the developed skill will let the rider brake appropriately and in the fastest (shortest) time possible. Shifting body weight on the bike is also part of this.
Badger6 is offline  
Likes For Badger6:
Old 07-24-21, 04:49 AM
  #52  
Jeff Neese
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 400
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 153 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 69 Times in 48 Posts
It's the same as with a motorcycle - you ALWAYS use both brakes. That's because you want your muscle memory to reach for both brakes automatically without having to think about it. You don't have to apply the front brake as hard if you're just slowing yourself down, but both brakes should be engaged. If you get in the habit of just reaching for the rear brake, then when you need more braking (panic stop, or for any other reason) you have that moment when your brain has to "remember" to reach for the front brake too. Muscle memory is a powerful thing and it pays to develop that in your braking. If your muscle memory is to use the rear brake only and someone or something pulls out in front of you, you don't want to have to "remember" to use both brakes. You want your body to just react automatically and reach for both brake levers at the same time. Train your muscle memory to use both brakes, always.
Jeff Neese is offline  
Likes For Jeff Neese:
Old 07-24-21, 02:10 PM
  #53  
xroadcharlie
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Windsor Ontario, Canada
Posts: 384

Bikes: 2018 Giant Sedona

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 121 Post(s)
Liked 70 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by Jeff Neese View Post
It's the same as with a motorcycle - you ALWAYS use both brakes. That's because you want your muscle memory to reach for both brakes automatically without having to think about it. You don't have to apply the front brake as hard if you're just slowing yourself down, but both brakes should be engaged. If you get in the habit of just reaching for the rear brake, then when you need more braking (panic stop, or for any other reason) you have that moment when your brain has to "remember" to reach for the front brake too. Muscle memory is a powerful thing and it pays to develop that in your braking. If your muscle memory is to use the rear brake only and someone or something pulls out in front of you, you don't want to have to "remember" to use both brakes. You want your body to just react automatically and reach for both brake levers at the same time. Train your muscle memory to use both brakes, always.
This is a very good point. As a recreational cyclist I'm guilty of using the only back brake much of the time. Once someone unexpectedly turned in front of me and my first instinct was to apply the back brake. You find out in a hurry that alone in an emergency is next to useless. While I was able to avoid a collision after applying the front too, I should have learned from that experience to get into the habit of using both brakes all the time. But I soon fell back into my old ways of using the back brake alone.

I plan to remedy that from now on.

Last edited by xroadcharlie; 07-24-21 at 02:17 PM.
xroadcharlie is offline  
Old 07-24-21, 05:20 PM
  #54  
scottfsmith
I like bike
 
scottfsmith's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2021
Location: Merry Land USA
Posts: 291

Bikes: Roubaix Comp 2020

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 124 Post(s)
Liked 119 Times in 78 Posts
I agree, you should always use both brakes. Just vary how much force you are applying. I use more back brake on the mild brake situations, and the more I need to stop the harder I push on the front brake compared to the back. On dry pavement front-only will be the fastest stop, but on wet pavement your front will start skidding earlier and so you want some back brake as well. In an emergency you don't necessarily have time to think wet-or-not, just hit both brakes and adjust.
scottfsmith is offline  
Likes For scottfsmith:
Old 07-24-21, 05:47 PM
  #55  
LarrySellerz
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2021
Posts: 333
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 383 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 66 Posts
the front brake is like 90+% of your braking power

Last edited by LarrySellerz; 07-24-21 at 06:08 PM.
LarrySellerz is offline  
Likes For LarrySellerz:
Old 07-24-21, 06:06 PM
  #56  
eddy m
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 643
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 111 Post(s)
Liked 52 Times in 35 Posts
Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Use the front brake. When you are braking (especially downhill) there is a lot more dynamic weight transfer onto the front wheel, so more braking grip available on the front wheel. Using the rear brake only to slow down is likely to lead to skids, as you have discovered. Personally I always use both brakes, but with more pressure on the front brake.
This ^^^^
Use the rear brake on long downhills only to keep you at a comfortable speed while preventing the front brake from overheating.
the bike will stop almost as well with front brakes only as it will with both brakes, and much better than it will with rear brake only. If anyone doesn't believe that, it's easy enough to do the experiment to prove.

em
eddy m is offline  
Old 07-24-21, 06:07 PM
  #57  
eddy m
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 643
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 111 Post(s)
Liked 52 Times in 35 Posts
Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
the front brake is like 90+% of your braking power. I regularly ride with only a front brake, but wouldn't ride with only a rear brake. skidding is cool but sounds miserable and scary when going through corners I hate twisty downhills
This too ^^^^

em
eddy m is offline  
Old 07-24-21, 08:54 PM
  #58  
Symox
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 387

Bikes: '07 Specialized Roubaix Comp Triple, '12 Gravity Fixie, '21 Liv Rove 4, '06? Giant EB Spirit

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 190 Post(s)
Liked 112 Times in 67 Posts
Thanks everyone - did several fast descents using 70/30 front/rear

much safer and fun
Symox is offline  
Likes For Symox:
Old 07-25-21, 01:08 AM
  #59  
genejockey 
Klaatu..Verata..Necktie?
 
genejockey's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 6,834

Bikes: Canyon Endurace, 105; Battaglin MAX, Chorus; Bianchi 928 Veloce; Ritchey Road Logic, Dura Ace; Cannondale R500 RX100; Schwinn Circuit, Sante; Lotus Supreme, Dura Ace

Mentioned: 20 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3468 Post(s)
Liked 3,692 Times in 1,863 Posts
I wonder how many novices crash because they were told "Don't use your front brake or you'll go over the bars!", and never learn how to use both brakes?
__________________
"Don't take life so serious-it ain't nohow permanent."
genejockey is online now  
Old 07-25-21, 01:23 AM
  #60  
Badger6
Obsessed with Eddington
 
Badger6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Brussels (BE) 🇧🇪
Posts: 954

Bikes: '16 Spesh Diverge, '14 Spesh Fatboy, '18 Spesh Epic, '18 Spesh SL6, '21 Spesh SL7, '21 Spesh Diverge...and maybe n+1?

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 348 Post(s)
Liked 351 Times in 234 Posts
Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
the front brake is like 90+% of your braking power
On its face this statement is false as written. Not helpful, and dangerous.
Badger6 is offline  
Old 07-25-21, 02:08 AM
  #61  
Racing Dan
Senior Member
 
Racing Dan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 1,893
Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1093 Post(s)
Liked 186 Times in 127 Posts
Im betting most of the rear braking that ppl do is because the rear brake is in the right, thus more natural to most. I moved the front brake to the right lever and it quickly became natural braking mostly on the front. In the past with the rear on the right, that's what I used, except when being conscious about it.
Racing Dan is offline  
Old 07-25-21, 02:30 AM
  #62  
dabac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 8,553
Mentioned: 46 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1040 Post(s)
Liked 233 Times in 173 Posts
Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Some techniques include deliberately locking up the rear wheel to dig through gravel and loose topsoil to hit the firmer stuff underneath.
Iím having trouble seeing how that would work. As long as youíre moving forward, your wheel will still be moving onto a new layer of loose topsoil. Iím struggling to see how you can use the same wheel to both freshen the surface and draw benefit from the cleared surface.
Itís supposed to kinda-sorta work for cars, where enough gravel can accumulate in front of the locked wheel to create a kind of wedge effect that helps with braking. Basically the flip side of hydroplaning.
Donít think youíd get enough wedge effect to matter from a bicycle wheel.
dabac is offline  
Old 07-25-21, 02:40 AM
  #63  
dabac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 8,553
Mentioned: 46 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1040 Post(s)
Liked 233 Times in 173 Posts
BITD when I did mountain touring we did a fair bit of rear braking to prevent the front from overheating. I still remember the front rim sizzling when rolling through a puddle after a LONG descent.
On most of my road riding I set a small amount of rear brake while I do most ĒactiveĒ braking up front. Basically I use the rear as a gauge. If the rear wheel begins to lock up, I know itís becoming unweighted and that there isnít much more braking to be had before going OTB.
Slick, slippery surfaces also prompt more rear brake use.
dabac is offline  
Old 07-25-21, 06:42 AM
  #64  
Kimmo 
bike whisperer
 
Kimmo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Melbourne, Oz
Posts: 9,396

Bikes: https://weightweenies.starbike.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=152015&p=1404231

Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1377 Post(s)
Liked 608 Times in 431 Posts
Originally Posted by xroadcharlie View Post
This is a very good point. As a recreational cyclist I'm guilty of using the only back brake much of the time. Once someone unexpectedly turned in front of me and my first instinct was to apply the back brake. You find out in a hurry that alone in an emergency is next to useless. While I was able to avoid a collision after applying the front too, I should have learned from that experience to get into the habit of using both brakes all the time. But I soon fell back into my old ways of using the back brake alone.

I plan to remedy that from now on.
For thirty years, I had the front brake on the left. Then, I decided that was wrong, because that's the hand I'll take off the bars first. Aside from realising that STI is brilliant for simultaneously downshifting and braking with one move, I also realised my muscle memory needed a lot work when I'd sometimes grab a fistful of the wrong brake.

Then I built up an old bike with modern stuff, and left the rear brake off for a while because of the old school brake hole. Riding that bike around really helped rewire my muscle memory. I suggest you disconnect your rear brake for a month or two.
Kimmo is offline  
Old 07-26-21, 01:28 PM
  #65  
Zaskar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 580
Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 345 Post(s)
Liked 140 Times in 88 Posts
This thread is a great example of how much bad advice can found in forums. "100% front brakes in emergency stops" "Don't use rear brakes" This is completely wrong. If you aren't able to use your rear brake to add to your front brake's effort - even in hard efforts - you should spend less time typing on forums and more time riding your bike... and learning how to modulate those brakes.

Weight transfer works both ways - of course the faster you decelerate, the greater the load on the front end... so move back and put more weight on the rear tire. Ever seen a sprinter right at the line - throwing the bike forward? Doing that when braking in that emergency stop lets you use a lot more rear brake. Also, if the rear locks up (which you'll quickly correct because you've been practicing modulating), the rear is much less likely to move around - because it's no longer trailing with little to no weight on it.

Type less, ride more.

Last edited by Zaskar; 07-27-21 at 07:58 AM. Reason: Dont go around the filter.
Zaskar is offline  
Old 07-26-21, 04:40 PM
  #66  
terrymorse 
climber has-been
 
terrymorse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Palo Alto, CA
Posts: 4,273

Bikes: Scott Addict R1

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 937 Post(s)
Liked 767 Times in 423 Posts
Originally Posted by Zaskar View Post
Ever seen a sprinter right at the line - throwing the bike forward? Doing that when braking in that emergency stop lets you use a lot more rear brake.
If your grab any amount of rear brake in an emergency stop, and the rear wheel isn't skidding, you're not using maximum braking.

It's also a bad idea to skid the rear wheel when braking hard, because that will cause the rear end to come around, and that can produce a high side crash (been there, done that).

In addition, pushing yourself back on the saddle isnít to allow more rear braking. Itís to avoid an endo over the bars.

Yes, please use both brakes most of the time. But when braking at the limit, the rear brake is useless.

Last edited by terrymorse; 07-26-21 at 05:42 PM.
terrymorse is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


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.