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First of all, forgive me if this should go in the brake forum- and if so hopefully a mod would be kind enough to move?

Anyhow, I'm curious for some feedback on winter riding and its effect on rim brakes. I'm looking to consolidate my collection of bikes down to two bikes. A year round, pavement oriented commuter, and an off road trail bike. This concerned the former. Disc brakes would be great, but I can get a much nicer overall bike if I settle for rim brakes. I'm not worried about all the various other concerns that may be present, at least not for this thread- those are other issues.

What my question basically boils down to is how durable are rim brake wheels in winter (mid-west, SE Michigan) riding? I am familar with their performance. Although this is only my second winter commuting, I did ride a very considerable amount last winter on a couple of rim brake bikes. This winter on entry-level mech. discs.

Obviously, the discs will not have a wear-and-tear effect on the wheels similar to rim brakes, but how much longevity should I expect out of a wheelset thats going to see year-round use with rim brakes? Consider all maintainence to be a non-issue and taken care of as necessary.
 

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Saving lives with knives.
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Honestly, the cold weather doesn't seem to wear down the pads/rims anymore quickly; the wet & slop of winter on the other did. I live in SE MI, it's been a while since I've ridden rim brakes but that is what I seem to remember.
 

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I commute and just ride around on a "fender" road bike. It doesn't do anything near the damage as me slopping around the trails in the mud on my mountain bike equipped with rim brakes.

I just figure when I eat through my rims, then I get disc brakes for the front. No option for the rears since the frame is old.

Unless you have a lot of hills that require you to be on your brakes a lot, rim should be just fine.
 

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plasma donor
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It does suck when rim brakes get iced. For general commuting, this isn't such an issue. If you can swing the disc option, it's great peace of mind, but for a commuter, traction is likely to be an issue before the brakes once it's icy out. As far as actual durability, you're going to have more brake wear in weather where you're going to brake more aggressively. Padwear isn't an issue in winter. Rimwear can be more noticeable from my experience.
 
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