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70lbs of kids + trailer = Disc brakes recommended?

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70lbs of kids + trailer = Disc brakes recommended?

Old 02-15-17, 06:56 PM
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Pukeskywalker
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70lbs of kids + trailer = Disc brakes recommended?

Is stopping a bike with 100lbs of trailer + kids too much for V-brakes?

I'm moving to a place with lots of bike paths, and I'd like to haul my kids around in a trailer (big twin 2-year-olds)

I have a bike with nice V's (Avid Single Digit SLs) and kool stop pads, but I'm thinking of getting a disc bike for quick stopping power in an emergency

Am I being too cautious? I'd like to know before trying it because I'm impatient and want to get going right away after we move in

Thanks
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Old 02-15-17, 06:59 PM
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Dry weather braking isn't limited by the brakes. It's limited by traction and handling considerations.

Towing a trailer with kids isn't about brakes, it's about common sense and riding at speeds you can manage safely based on conditions.

Put very simply, don't go flying down the MUP with a trailer, at 20+ mph, regardless of hat kind of brakes you have.
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Old 02-16-17, 02:50 PM
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+1 to everything FBinNY said. There are other sorts of brakes that lack for power (large calipers, roller brakes) but a well adjusted v-brake has more stopping power than some discs. Discs do win out in the rain or when riding through streams though. They have some other advantages off pavement as well.

And to echo the bit about keeping speed down, braking hard with a heavy trailer can get dicey, so better to avoid it if possible.
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Old 02-17-17, 09:09 PM
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V brakes are quite good in the rain after the first rotation of your wheels. The difference between them and discs is pretty small.
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Old 02-19-17, 06:36 PM
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thanks everybody. skipping a bike upgrade will save some big $ here. I will put kool stops and Avid Single Digit SL Vs on it
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Old 03-10-17, 06:09 AM
  #6  
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Here's my 2 cents...Pulling children you CANNOT have enough brake. My wife has just settled on a Scott Contessa 720 for her trailering needs (including our 1 year old baby girl) due to primarily hydraulic disks...that and it being just gorgeous! But brand aside (I'm not badge loyal at all) if you have concerns...upgrade. I've pulled over 200 pounds using bikes with v's....and stopped reasonably due to not flying warp speed to begin with. But disks work better, period.
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Old 03-10-17, 07:33 PM
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Cycle Tote make trailers with brakes. That is, when you brake hard the trailer's brakes brake as well. Ya, they're expensive but they are really nice.
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Old 03-11-17, 12:24 PM
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Maybe Modify , rather than Buy? have a 2 wheel trailer, consider rigging up drum brake hub wheels on the trailer, itself..

@ my LBS they did that for a Local, the weight he was hauling was Carcass of portions of a dead Elk bagged during Hunting Season.



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Old 03-12-17, 12:59 AM
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Originally Posted by 52telecaster View Post
V brakes are quite good in the rain after the first rotation of your wheels. The difference between them and discs is pretty small.
Being a daily rider where its wet for 8 months out of the year, and lots of long steep hills, I can't agree with that statement.
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Old 03-15-17, 12:41 PM
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Originally Posted by kickstart View Post
Being a daily rider where its wet for 8 months out of the year, and lots of long steep hills, I can't agree with that statement.
+10

Most people who diss discs don't have experience with them, or only experience with cheapies. Promax or Radius discs are not the standard.
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Old 06-02-17, 01:32 AM
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All this talk of Vee brakes verses Disc brakes is all well and good but whichever system you choose they are only as good as the spokes and rims on your wheels and then the build quality of the wheel has a very large influence and bearing upon the action and reaction of the brakes.

For the record I am a big Sturmey Archer 70mm drum brake fan, I find that in a cargo carrying situation that the drums out perform discs and Vee brakes....... but again it is down to spokes, rims and wheel build quality.

The other advantage that drums have over open discs and Vee brakes is that they are enclosed from the environment and do not suffer in wet, dusty or gritty conditions. I have been building trikes & quads with drum brakes for over 7 years now and the majority of them are used in the commercial delivery and industrial sectors without a single issue.

Last edited by Gareth; 06-02-17 at 01:39 AM. Reason: spelling mistakes.
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Old 06-02-17, 11:29 AM
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The rig I mentioned in the post above , #8, was wheels built with Sturmey Archer drum brake front hubs.
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Old 06-05-17, 04:48 PM
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The Burley D'lite trailer is working out great. It is an older model that needed a replacement of the elastomer shocks, $20.

The kids love it and have been asking to go on a bike ride every day.

My V-brakes with Koolstop pads are working out, pulling 90 lbs. There aren't many hills here, but I take it slow down the ones I see.
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Old 08-15-17, 10:31 AM
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V-brakes or disks have enough power to skid the tires, so "power" means nothing. Being able to smoothly _control_ the braking ("modulation") is important to maximise braking while maintaining control, and excessive brake power makes this more difficult. So more power than needed to skid the tire is not only useless, but can make a crash more likely.

V-brakes rely on rim quality and condition...and do a good job when that is nice. If the rim is damaged or contaminated, then they may not do so well. V-brakes also lose braking power when the rim is wet, but your tires have less traction in the wet also, so this is not such a handicap. Disks tend to be more consistent.

If you have to deal with hills, then the big issue is with controlling speed on long descents, and what is needed there is heat capacity and cooling area. Large rims are better at both than a small disk, but a large size disk might be better yet. If the rims get too hot, the tires can blow off the rims...not good, but often does not result in a crash. An undersized disk can fail catastrophically when it overheats.

Disk calipers are available to suit road or MTB ratio levers, where you have to stick with MTB ratio levers with V-brakes (or use a kludgey ratio changing device). This may be a factor if you want to run drop bars, as you will pretty much require road-ratio brake levers.

Disks can make fat tires and/or fenders easier to fit, and you have more rim options, as there is nothing stopping you from running a rim-brake rim with a disk.

Cantilever brakes don't have to be V-brakes though, and wide and narrow profile cantis can suit various lever ratios by changing straddle cables. Wide profile cantis are not fussy as to straddle cable length, so are easy to set up for big tires and fenders.

Finally, a disk front on a skewered wheel may eject the wheel after frequent hard use...so requires frequent checking. A nutted axle, or better yet a through axle is a good idea. Why they can't just mount the calipers on the front of the right fork leg, I'll never know.
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