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Brake lever choice for mechanical disks

Old 02-23-22, 12:21 PM
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Gyro_T
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Brake lever choice for mechanical disks

I am reluctantly giving up my drop bars on my Kona Rove that has mechanical disk brakes (TRP Spyre). I will be using a Jones bar with the 2.5" rise. Not sure what works best, long pull, short pull, "linear pull", etc. with that brake and bar combo. I occasionally ride this bike fully loaded so power is a factor, but it is mostly ridden as a road bike on Tarmac. Any suggestions from personal experience is welcome.
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Old 02-23-22, 03:29 PM
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Spyre's are a short pull brake so something like the Paul Canti Levers would be an ideal choice. They have the nicest feel and would be ideal if you are looking for good power and modulation especially with good compressionless housing and quality slick stainless steel cables.
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Old 02-23-22, 04:35 PM
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I think that Tektro makes brake levers that are short pull for flat bars, did you check their website? Levers that are listed as working for cantilever brakes should work on your Spyres.
TEKTRO BRAKE SYSTEMS
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Old 02-23-22, 05:55 PM
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I love my 4 finger Sturmey Archer levers on my 3 IGH bikes. They have 2 holes for the rivet but come as short pull, I'm using them long. The newer ones have comfy plastic inserts that are not wearing down AFAIK.
Right or wrong, it's working fine with SA drums, Spryre disc on my Rohloff14 and soso with an old side pull caliper on my CCM front wheel. The Spyre pads grip instantly anytime, 203 mm disc. None of my brakes ever squeak.
===============
Edit >> Well I just had a look at my latest Simcoe roadster bike bought last spring, that I've modified just about everything. The stock levers were crap and the first to go. I put on a second pair of SA levers I bought 5 years ago, they are still at short pull. The front wheel has the SA XL-FDD that was on my tour bike, used it about 500 miles on this bike. I guess I never noticed any difference in feel.
The rear has a Nexus 7i with roller brake. It is very mushy, so maybe I'll have to try something.

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Old 02-24-22, 07:17 AM
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tektro MT3.0 for flat bars on all my hybrid/mtb bikes.
used with BB7's.
cheap, dependable, bulletproof 2-finger brakes.
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Old 02-24-22, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
tektro MT3.0 for flat bars on all my hybrid/mtb bikes.
used with BB7's.
cheap, dependable, bulletproof 2-finger brakes.
are your bb7 mtb or road? This guys spryes are short pull, he had drop bar levers before.
he needs to do the research on the various tektro levers to match up the lever pull to his spryes.
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Old 02-24-22, 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
are your bb7 mtb or road? This guys spryes are short pull, he had drop bar levers before.
he needs to do the research on the various tektro levers to match up the lever pull to his spryes.

bb7 mtb version on the rear.
with deore v-brakes on the front.
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Old 02-24-22, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
bb7 mtb version on the rear.
with deore v-brakes on the front.
Sounds like he needs different levers than you use.
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Old 02-24-22, 10:50 AM
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2 finger levers are just about the dumbest awkward thing going. IMO. Cheap alright. It's even dumber that they are often paired with twist grips. LOL. Whether they work as well has no relevance. I did use them once or twice on a hotel rental with a rim brake canti.
BB7s are dinosaur technology now.
I rest ALL my fingers on mine, a lot of the time.

I know there's fancy levers now that you can switch the pull anytime. Then you can figure out the pull makes NO difference. LOL.

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Old 02-24-22, 12:27 PM
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When I set up my troll with dropbars, and mtn bb7's, I had to be sure to get the right long pull dropbar levers, so this fellow will have to be sure of his levers.
My understanding is that this is pretty important.
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Old 02-24-22, 07:31 PM
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Shimano levers have an adjustment for short and long pull.

BL-R780
BL-R550
BL-R4700
BL-R3000
etc...
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Old 02-25-22, 12:28 AM
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I did find a couple models on the Tektro website that specify "disk". Two of them are Eclipse MT 2.1, and the RT354AG. Both are an MTB style that look like a 2-finger design. I would love to find one that is more like a 4 finger design. Hard to tell with the Sturmey Archer, levers. The do not indicate if they are short-pull.
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Old 02-25-22, 02:52 AM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53 View Post
2 finger levers are just about the dumbest awkward thing going. IMO. Cheap alright. It's even dumber that they are often paired with twist grips. LOL. Whether they work as well has no relevance. I did use them once or twice on a hotel rental with a rim brake canti.
BB7s are dinosaur technology now.
I rest ALL my fingers on mine, a lot of the time.....

i dunno if they're officially called/labeled "2-finger levers."
that's just the maximum amount of force required (for me)
to activate them for emergency/fast stops.
in normal use......one finger is plenty.
i did buy a set of moto-x lever pads, cut the small one
in half, put half on each lever. comfy.

might depend on your hand size.
i gots big handses, so it's ueber-comfortable to rest a couple
fingers on the levers with hands on the grips, thumbs on
the trigger shifter.
i want instant brake response in traffic, so no bother.

big hands = unable to use a standard laptop keypad,
need to carry a separate full size keyboard.
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Old 02-25-22, 06:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Gyro_T View Post
I did find a couple models on the Tektro website that specify "disk". ...
...
The do not indicate if they are short-pull.
I mentioned in my previous post that any levers that are listed as working with cantilever brakes should work fine with Spyre disk.

Canti brakes are considered a short cable pull brake.
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Old 02-25-22, 06:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Gyro_T View Post
I did find a couple models on the Tektro website that specify "disk". Two of them are Eclipse MT 2.1, and the RT354AG. Both are an MTB style that look like a 2-finger design. I would love to find one that is more like a 4 finger design. Hard to tell with the Sturmey Archer, levers. The do not indicate if they are short-pull.
gyro, it would be best if you take the time to do a bunch of reading up on short and long pull brake levers and brakes, so its clear about the differences and the consequences of not having the correct levers.

it's pretty straight forward with some research
good luck
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Old 02-25-22, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
I mentioned in my previous post that any levers that are listed as working with cantilever brakes should work fine with Spyre disk.

Canti brakes are considered a short cable pull brake.
Just about any lever that works with road brakes is also a short pull lever. Sora R3000 levers are short pull, for example. Shimano BL-550 are also compatible. In the used market there are literally millions to choose from. As long as the distance from the pivot to the brake anchor point is 25mm or less, they are short pull.
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Old 02-25-22, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
As long as the distance from the pivot to the brake anchor point is 25mm or less, they are short pull.
Interesting little tidbit, thanksWill try to remember that and check some of my levers
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Old 02-25-22, 11:02 AM
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I get it that there is more here than I thought I needed to learn. One consideration I have to make these days is arthritis in the knuckles of my index and middle of my right hand. It seemed to me a lever I could use four fingers on would be helpful, especially on long gravel descents which abound the local area.

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Old 02-25-22, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Gyro_T View Post
I get it that there is more here than I thought I needed to learn. One consideration I have to make these days is arthritis in the knuckles of my index and middle of my right hand. It seemed to me a lever I could use four fingers on would be helpful, especially on long gravel descents which dominate the local area.
Were you happy with the braking power of the spyres overall?
And yes, regular length levers are more appropriate imo than the stubby ones.
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Old 02-25-22, 11:52 AM
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It had a pair of Gevenalle CX levers on Salsa Woodchipper bars. Yes, I was happy with the performance of those.
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Old 02-25-22, 06:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Gyro_T View Post
It had a pair of Gevenalle CX levers on Salsa Woodchipper bars. Yes, I was happy with the performance of those.
I'm familiar with those levers, I have a set but with avid bb7 mtb versions. Those brakes are long pull brakes, so I had to specify the Gevenalle long pull versions.
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Old 02-25-22, 11:34 PM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
Interesting little tidbit, thanksWill try to remember that and check some of my levers
Helpful to know if you have to sort hundreds of brake levers.
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Old 02-26-22, 06:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Gyro_T View Post
I get it that there is more here than I thought I needed to learn. One consideration I have to make these days is arthritis in the knuckles of my index and middle of my right hand. It seemed to me a lever I could use four fingers on would be helpful, especially on long gravel descents which abound the local area.
re finger hand strength. With cantis, disk, v brake, I've always found it better to have initial braking point NOT immediately after lever movement. I realize this preferred "amount" to be impossible to describe in writing, but I think the best way to describe it is that if engagement is too early, you get less mechanical advantage if the ends of your fingers are only slightly bent.
if you look at the angle of your finger, from the last joint to the end of finger, I find more finger power and better feel for modulation with that angle 45 degrees+, rather than just a slight angle.
Not very clear I realize.....
but keep this in mind if you have those issues that impact things.
I know some people who think instant engagement of lever is safer in their minds (faster braking response) but it really has less mechanical advantage.
*We are talking small differences in lever position here though.....
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Old 02-26-22, 07:01 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Helpful to know if you have to sort hundreds of brake levers.
makes complete sense.
What actual points do you measure from, middle of the anchor points of brake cable end stop things, like middle to middle standard for handlebars etc,

have yet to look at levers I have, just curious.
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Old 02-26-22, 08:50 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Helpful to know if you have to sort hundreds of brake levers.
None of my non-drop bar brake levers are new enough to be long pull. And my drop bar levers were all bought for short pull, if I wanted to use a long pull brake I added a Travel Agent.
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