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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I really think it depends on rider weight and bike size. The heavier the rider and the smaller the bike frame size, the more you'll tend to use the rear brake. I use to ride smaller frames and my riding weight (bike plus rider) was 285+, I rode "large" size and I'd go through rear brake pads a lot more often than fronts. I'm now down to a total riding weight of around 240ish, ride XL frames, and I use the front brake way more than before. The pad wear seems to be much more even than before.

discuss....
 

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100lbs or 300lbs doesnt matter. xs or xl frame doesnt matter. its just pure physics.. an object in motion will try to remain in motion. that means when you hit the brakes, your body weight and the bikes weight shift forward, the bike acts as a lever to push the front wheel down and unloads the rear wheel.

it'll happen more or less according to weight, but it'll happen regardless. the brake tries to stop your wheel but physics try to keep your body and bike moving forward.. the front has more weight and traction to slow you down.

it sounds like you've just learned how to brake more effectively :)
 

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tomsmoto said:
100lbs or 300lbs doesnt matter. xs or xl frame doesnt matter. its just pure physics.. an object in motion will try to remain in motion. that means when you hit the brakes, your body weight and the bikes weight shift forward, the bike acts as a lever to push the front wheel down and unloads the rear wheel.

it'll happen more or less according to weight, but it'll happen regardless. the brake tries to stop your wheel but physics try to keep your body and bike moving forward.. the front has more weight and traction to slow you down.

it sounds like you've just learned how to brake more effectively :)
ditto!

I use both brakes
 

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NMBP
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I ride with my seat higher than anyone I know and I have been known to have more than my fair share of endo's. When I ride technical slickrock, I stay off of the front brake.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Also, heavier people move the COG further back with same body movement. The smaller the frame, the less one would have to move to shift COG (shorter wheelbase, etc), loading the rear suspension, wheel, and brake more.
 

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ups and downs
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And it depends on how much deceleration you're trying to achieve. The harder you brake the more weight transfer you have. If your riding style tends to favour lighter and smoother braking and you're mostly using your rear brake to help straighten the bike on loose surfaces by some trail braking or light braking, you'll likely use more rear brake. But for hard braking to scrub speed or avoid objects you'll end up using a lot of front brake if you want to avoid skidding.

Some bike geometries will mitigate weight transfer, longer front-centre, slacker fork angles and higher forks can change the rider's weight balance to more rearward to start with and that means in most conditions you might only be getting to 50/50 distribution under braking.

YMMV :skep:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
dogonfr said:
Maybe you should go ride a MX track or do some Hare Scrambles. :thumbsup:
I've ridden motorbikes up on many of the same trails that I ride my bike today - before they were banned up there and yes, on a motorcycle, you do use the front brake a lot more heavily. Perhaps it has to do with the very low COG of a motorcycle and it's relationship to rider weight compared to the very light weight of a bicycle compared to it's rider weight, how it shifts under braking, and the idea that a large % of the rider weight can be shifted around compared to a motorcycle which has a fair amount of unshiftable weight (the bike itself).
 

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ride hard take risks
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tomsmoto said it very well. :thumbsup:

Might as well throw the front brake out and skid the heck out of the trails that makes sense, then you wont be able to ride you MTB either, now that's thinking with the big head. :rolleyes:
 

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Old man on a bike
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Discussing what? Fat guys use rear brakes more when they ride a frame that's too small? I think you're just learning how to ride more effectively but I'm guessing since you really don't share much in the way of details about your riding or braking technique...
 

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Take yer back brake off!

The problem with back brake riders is the state the trail get in on steep terrain.

I used to live in Dublin and in the Dublin Mountains are some of the best steep tech trails I've seen. But cos they're steep a lot of riders drag their back brake and skid down them. A lot of the trails are now crap to ride: all loose and sketchy rather than rocky, grippy and a delight to ride.

Same thing here in Wellington, NZ. Some of the steeper trails are made a mud slide from the skidders and foot draggers (another pet hate of mine). Luckily they are maintained by local volunteers, whereas in Dublin they are ruined forever. :madman:

Lower your saddle, get off the back, use the front brake and save the trails for others to enjoy. If you can't face the fear of the endo: get off and walk!! Others will thank you for leaving the trail in a great state. :thumbsup:

rant over...
 

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i almost always use BOTH my brakes when braking - there's two levers for a reason- but i have more pressure applied to the fronts than the rears... i find using a bit of rear brake keeps the rear more planted (I try to never lock up the rear) lessens that sensation that you'll fly over the bars from the front brake... but that's my style... everyone will be different...

just take this analogy for instance... when you apply the brake pedal in your car - BOTH front and rear brakes get used... why? because that's the most efficient use of the brakes - when BOTH are applied (of course more bias on the front... and the front rotors are usually significantly bigger than the rear..)... but nonetheless... shortest stopping distances and heat is being managed most efficiently when both brakes are being used to their max capacity...

and of course, there might be some occasions where you need the bike to rotate - so you'd maybe use just the rear in those instances... but those are exceptions... i'm just talking most efficient use for braking in a straightline either on flat or going down hill


peace
 

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I personally can't remember the last time I skidded my rear wheel on a trail ride. Not only is it better for the trails, it saves a $hitload of $$ in rubber.
Plus, you have much more control when both wheels are gripping the ground without breaking traction.
I'm usually a 60-70% front brake guy myself. And I weigh almost 300lbs geared up.
 

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mudson said:
Lower your saddle, get off the back, use the front brake and save the trails for others to enjoy. If you can't face the fear of the endo: get off and walk!! Others will thank you for leaving the trail in a great state. :thumbsup:

rant over...
:thumbsup:

It's all about control and trail sustainability. Use both brakes but put more pressure on the front when DH. Obviously it's a bit different if you are heading uphill. If you mostly use your rear brake on the DH your front wheel will tend to float and you'll have less control; washing out on corners because your front wheel isn't biting the dirt.

Endos?? If the DH is sustained you won't endo because with modern suspension the mid-part of your travel should compress when the weight shifts forward a bit (thus more control of the bike) and compensate for the tendency to endo, (maybe if your brakes have no modulation or your suspension is jacked, but then get new brakes and service, or get a new fork) also assuming you have proper body positioning for the DH.

You only momentarily let off on the front brake if you are going over a steeper pitch, such as a rock roller or root roller, down steps, etc.. where the front wheel may get stuck. Other than that, for the sustained DH, it's both brakes but mostly front, both for control and trail sustainability.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
savagemann said:
I personally can't remember the last time I skidded my rear wheel on a trail ride. Not only is it better for the trails, it saves a $hitload of $$ in rubber.
Plus, you have much more control when both wheels are gripping the ground without breaking traction.
I'm usually a 60-70% front brake guy myself. And I weigh almost 300lbs geared up.
According to what the other people are saying, you are using too much rear brake. 80% in front. I say as rider weight goes up, a rider will put more pressure on the rear and end up using more rear brake - more like what you say. A lot will depend on setup as well. Riser bars, lower seat, trail type, rotor size! will all make a big difference, IMO. Others say it's just 'basic physics'.

Personally, I rarely skid except in a panic/oops I came in to that suprise corner too hot situation. I'm currently running 8" rotors front and rear on both bikes and if I had to estimate % back when I weighed more, I'd say I used to do pretty close to 50/50. Now I think it's 70/30 ft/rr/
 

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BrassBalled DropbarNinja
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Your front brakes are where your stopping power is coming from. I'm one of the new school riders who use more front brakes over the rear... If i were to have to choose between one of my brakes, i'd choose the front any time...

And yes, big guys use front brakes too...

 
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