Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

Please use an E-brake

Old 02-02-06, 10:28 AM
  #1  
flythebike
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Buddy of mine who thinks a brake messes up the aesthetic of his bike was presented with an unavoidable, unexpected obstacle yesterday. Someone had closed a section of road that was just after a corner that he rode every day. All of a sudden here he is at speed and has a very short distance to come to a complete stop as a fence blocked the road. No out. He couldn't stop. Bent his fork, ruined his headset, injuries to face and wrist. Damage could have been minimized or avoided with a brake. Point is no matter how good you are sometimes you have no out, you just must stop quickly and he had no time to brace and skid. So all you invincible brakeless people (and I have logged years as one) take note, it turns out you may not be invincible after all.
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Old 02-02-06, 10:38 AM
  #2  
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or he could slow down. i agree if you are going to blaze around town a brake is a good idea, i think most people in here will agree... riding brakeless is kinda like smoking "i know it's in my best interest not to do it, but it just looks so dang cool!"

p.s. i still ride brakeless
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Old 02-02-06, 10:44 AM
  #3  
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If you cannot do an emergency side swipe out skid you should not be riding without a brake. Best luck to your friend on a quick recovery.
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Old 02-02-06, 10:45 AM
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*yawn*...How about this. You mind your own business and let people decide for themselves wether to install a brake or not. There is enough literature out there for everyone to make an informed decision with out more ancedotal "evidence".
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Old 02-02-06, 10:50 AM
  #5  
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna
If you cannot do an emergency side swipe out skid you should not be riding without a brake. Best luck to your friend on a quick recovery.
You didn't read my post very carefully. There was no warning. No time to do anything but grab for brakes and/or backpedal a little. No time to stand up brace yourself and skid. He wasn't going like a bat out of hell. Just normal everyday speed. On a bike trail. And both these counter-arguments are missing the point. Stuff happens. Handbrakes allow you to react quicker if you need to make an emergency stop. Please use one and save pleas for the courtroom.
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Old 02-02-06, 10:54 AM
  #6  
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If I can't see around a corner I slow down almost to a complete stop. I just ordered a brake lever so I can run a front brake, but in the 2 or 3 months I've been riding brakeless and haven't had a problem. I take it nice and easy except when I know for sure I can speed up a little, and even then I'm not that fast.
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Old 02-02-06, 10:54 AM
  #7  
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Originally Posted by flythebike
Please use one and save pleas for the courtroom.
but aren't you the one pleading here??

I ride with a brake, but I know alot of people who don't, and I have every confidence in them that they're aware of the risks in doing so. You say yourself it was an unavoidable, unexpected obstacle. sometimes you just can't do anything about it. again, those who ride without brakes understand what that entails. and even if you do have one, sometimes ***** just happens.
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Old 02-02-06, 10:58 AM
  #8  
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Originally Posted by flythebike
You didn't read my post very carefully. There was no warning. No time to do anything but grab for brakes and/or backpedal a little. No time to stand up brace yourself and skid.
I guess in that case, a brake wouldn't have helped much either. He probably would have slowed down only a couple mph.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:05 AM
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Brakes are your friend, I dont care who you are. Everyone should ride brakes, front and back.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:08 AM
  #10  
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I realize you are just trying to be helpful but really, your friend ran into a fence, not like a sudden moving object. It seems like that isn't really an issue of having a brake or not but going too fast without a brake.

I've ridden both with a brake and without and my only accident came when I went over the bars by slamming on my front brake on a downhill. Not sure it was more helpful than a powerful skid would have been but since it was there, I hit it.

Everyone knows the risks and people have accidents, both with brakes and without.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery to your friend. Crashing suck no matter what the circumstances.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:09 AM
  #11  
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Panic stop with front brake = endo.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:11 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by bridgestoneboy
Brakes are your friend, I dont care who you are. Everyone should ride brakes, front and back.

Are you being sarcastic? If not then you should do what Shants said.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:19 AM
  #13  
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Hmm... my one really bad wreck came on my road bike -- brakes front and back -- where I got doored by a woman getting out of a cab in the middle of traffic (cab hadn't pulled over.)

Brakes didn't do much, and I hit the door full tilt. I can see brakeless = ride slower/more cautious... but brake or no brake, if you don't see a fence, you're going to hit it.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:24 AM
  #14  
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Originally Posted by wangster
Are you being sarcastic? If not then you should do what Shants said.

Do I sound sarcastic, no. Brakes should be on all bikes that are not exclusively rode in the velodrome.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:26 AM
  #15  
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Riding brakeless is knowing how fast you can stop and riding accordingly.

If you can't stop on a dime, then riding blind around a corner at full speed is probably a bad idea. There could just as easily have been a parked car there, no?
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Old 02-02-06, 11:36 AM
  #16  
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I agree with bridgestone boy. It's just too much to risk, when having those two little pieces of metal would save your life. I also think that we should have to get bikes inspected yearly, though, so that they could check on those and other safety features.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:39 AM
  #17  
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Old 02-02-06, 11:44 AM
  #18  
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my one bad wreck on any bike in the 19 years i've been riding them was last month. it involved using the front brake on my fix.

an emergency can mean just about anything. sometimes a brake just makes things worse, but i have one anyway--because i'm a masochist.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:44 AM
  #19  
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what shants said, but not as harsh.

sorry to hear about your buddy, it sucks when fences jump up a bite ya
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Old 02-02-06, 11:45 AM
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i hope that the facetiousness of bridgestoneboy's post hasn't escaped you all.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by monkey
Panic stop with front brake = endo.
Yeah, if the rider panics. Quite different from an emergency stop, which is what the front brake is for.
Bottom line is, everyone should ride at the speed that is appropriate for their skill, bike setup and traffic situation.
The guy who hit a fence was going too fast, that's all. Lesson learnt for him. Either put on a brake, or stop going into blind corners at 20mph.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by bridgestoneboy
Brakes should be on all bikes that are not exclusively rode in the velodrome.
ridden in the velodrome. it's ridden, not rode.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:50 AM
  #23  
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The point isn't the particular circimstance of this event. Rather, that it is a fact that you can stop faster with hand brakes. Given X amount of exposure, there is Y chance that eventually you will find yourself in a situation where you can't escape unscathed without a lot of stopping power. And slowing to a crawl for every blind corner is a pain in the butt to boot. If you take the same route and are constantly faced with the same solution, it is normal to take for granted a certain action. But if those circumstances change, you're fooked. A similar thing has happened to me in with road work.

The First Amendment is still in effect. I'll preach all I want. Since I am, I'll invoke the name of God, Sheldon Brown. He would agree with me 100%. You kids want to ride like you are in control of everything that happens, fine. You want to insult me because you can't properly articulate your views, I could care less.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:51 AM
  #24  
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P.S. I'm outta here.
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Old 02-02-06, 11:54 AM
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I dislike it when people preach to me through anecdotes. I personally really don't like riding brakeless, but that's my own opinion. I think everyone is pretty much aware of the inherent dangers associated with riding a bike without brakes. Now if they still choose to pursue that style of riding, despite the risks, than so be it, its their decision and nobody's place to try and convince them otherwise.
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