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Disc brake users - your verdict?
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Chrace




Joined: 28 Apr 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:27 am    Post subject: Disc brake users - your verdict? Reply with quote

So, for those of you have have gone for disc brakes on road or TT bikes - what's your verdict?

I magically sold my road bike the other day, with all accumulated swish trinkets added over the past 1.5 years, for 250 quid more than I paid. Took a whole 10 mins on Facebook for someone to bite which took me by surprise and has now left me without a bike. Cue complete luxury problem - I had to go shopping for a new bike.

So I've ordered a Spesh Venge Disc but curious what people's verdict of the change of brakes are?

The market for wheel upgrade from stock seems harsh. Too new I guess. Anything else positive or negative you have noted?
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Jorgan




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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You won't regret it. Sure they can be noisy under hard braking, but they are a game changer in the wet imho. Hydro potentially a bit more faff, but there's always the LBS if you want.

Great example was a very fast, long and rough descent on an Audax I did. I went from the back of the strung out group to almost the front in about a minute; I felt like John Tomac! All because I could modulate my braking way better.
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

my CX bike stops so quickly it often still surprises me....
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Whisk




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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My HotChillee team bikes have had disc brakes for the last two years. I'm riding a Specialized Venge this year. For the previous two years, I rode bikes with carbon rim brakes, which were terrifying in the wet and had issues with heat build-up on long descents in the dry. My own bikes all have Dura Ace rim brakes with alloy rims.

There is no denying that disc brakes work. Regardless of the conditions, when you pull the levers you get instant deceleration. Brake too hard in the wet and they can be more prone to locking up, but once you get used to them, that isn't such an issue. A good rim brake with an alloy braking surface will stop you nearly as quick in most conditions, but in the wet you obviously get that slight lag as the pad clears the water off the rim. The disc brakes do seem prone to getting dirt in them in the wet, which can make a nasty grating sound until it clears off the pads.

I don't MTB or CX, so disc brakes are all new to me and not something that I really know how to maintain and fiddle about with. Fortunately, my team bike gets replaced every year, so I've not really had to service the brakes. I think that would probably be a trip to the bike shop for me rather than something I could do myself. Don't forget to put spacers between the pads if you are transporting your bike without the wheels in - if the levers get squeezed without a rotor between them then you might find the pads closed together and you'll need to prize them apart.

I think if I was in the market for a new bike then I probably would go for something with disc brakes. They're not going away regardless of whether they're actually needed or just a marketing gimmick. I don't think I would go out and buy a new bike just for the benefit of getting disc brakes, especially if I had "nice" race wheels which would be no use on my new disc bike. All of my own stuff is 10-speed though, so my good wheels wouldn't be much use on any new bike now Wink
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Jorgan




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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 1:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also used my Canyon with carbon wheels all winter and in all weathers, because the rim doesn't get trashed like it does with with rim brakes; plus better performance in the wet obviously.
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PCP




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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a Cube road bike with disks and love it. You actually stop, even in the wet.
Can screech a bit but the confidence that they give you when descending is wonderful, especially with the short, steep hills round I ride on.

Id never buy another road bike without them.
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Pebble 2




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PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What sealed it for me was last years Marmotte Sportive, coming off the Galibier in the rain, I was passing hundreds of people gripping their brakes in sheer terror trying to slow down. The Cannondale Synapse meanwhile allowed me to brake confidently before every bend and control my speed perfectly. Its a no brainer.....
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Mungo




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PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2018 10:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't ride in the rain unless I've got a number on.
The 70.3"s I do are flat.. ish.

With a new bike in the offing this Winter, and IMUK the target next year, if it's wet I'll loose lots of time on the downhills.
I'm climbing well and hunters is getting flatter month by month!
I don't want to give this time away descending.

Anyone rode a P5 with hydraulic brakes?
Better?

Not convinced on discs, I won't be doing any alpine switch backs or crazy hilly sportives anytime ever so maybe there not for me.
I've no doubt there very efficent.
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Jorgan




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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2018 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mungo wrote:

Anyone rode a P5 with hydraulic brakes?
Better?


The braking surface is going to make more difference than hydraulic power. Carbon rims are less effective in the wet, period. This is why discs are such an advantage if you're using a full carbon rim. Unless you're using an alloy brake track of course Smile
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Chrace




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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mungo wrote:
I don't ride in the rain unless I've got a number on.
The 70.3"s I do are flat.. ish.

With a new bike in the offing this Winter, and IMUK the target next year, if it's wet I'll loose lots of time on the downhills.
I'm climbing well and hunters is getting flatter month by month!
I don't want to give this time away descending.

Anyone rode a P5 with hydraulic brakes?
Better?

Not convinced on discs, I won't be doing any alpine switch backs or crazy hilly sportives anytime ever so maybe there not for me.
I've no doubt there very efficent.

Mungo - do you do mountainbiking? If not, go do it. Seriously.

At the half X last year (extremely hilly, and very hairy descends) I was easily outmatched by some of the others when climbing in sheer power and engine. Typical triathlete style, train more, train harder. But especially one guy simply lost all his training time value in not being able to descend. He passed me after 10 mins shooting up the first hill but I left him going down, a pattern that repeated all the way through the race until I simply just left him. I only saw him again 30 mins into the run where he came past me at ballistic speed. He was clearly MUCH faster than me from a typical triathlete training point of view. But I descend very fast, and more so amongst triathletes than roadies. And there is no doubt my MTB skills are the primary reason.

On MTB you'll quickly learn how to brake, corner and pick lines. And you'll do it at lower speeds with soft ground instead of tarmac. Crashing is kind of part of the fun, where as on the road it's deadly. It's also really good interval training from a training point of view. But fun.

So next winter - upgrading your skills will matter a LOT more than upgrading the bike. Less bling, sure, but it sounds like you have a target for IMUK and if so it's all about the finishing line time rather than how cool the bike looks.
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Jorgan




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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would agree with the above about descending skills; even on some pretty poor carbon rim braking, I can out descend most triathletes in the dry. Conversely, in the wet, I have lost places on very technical wet descents, to people on standard road bikes with alloy wheels Rolling Eyes

I would say that a full aero helmet & disc wheel makes its presence known on long, fast non-technical descents, as I have closed gaps of 300-400m in no time at all in these circumstances too, by staying aero.

If & when I replace my ageing first gen Speed Concept 7, I'll go for a TT frame with disc brakes. I'm that converted now; and in a few years the choice and integration will be good.
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Andy916




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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mungo wrote:
I don't want to give this time away descending.


Read a book on advanced driving or riding, or better still learn from someone with those skills. Far more important for speed and safety downhill. Also, as above, mtb helps.

I've not been out-descended in a few years of TriX/Chamonix etc ultra hilly stuff, not because I'm gung-ho but because I'm thinking further ahead. Alloy braking surface, ultegra or Magura calipers. Really couldn't care less about discs except for a gravel or winter bike. MTB is different, in that front-wheel lock-up on a steep descent is no problem as your weight is further back; do that on road geometry and skinny tyres and you'll be on your arse in no time unless you're Marc Marquez.
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fenix




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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2018 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mungo wrote:
I don't ride in the rain unless I've got a number on.

.............. if it's wet I'll loose lots of time on the downhills.
.


Can you see the solution here ?
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jibberjim




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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fenix wrote:
Mungo wrote:
I don't ride in the rain unless I've got a number on.

.............. if it's wet I'll loose lots of time on the downhills.
.


Can you see the solution here ?


Don't ride in the rain AT ALL!
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Jorgan




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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2018 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even when I commuted on a CX bike with discs, I used to be in the "why do road bikes need disc brakes" crowd; but now I have a carbon road bike with hydraulic discs, I'm a convert.

I actually look at road bikes with rim brakes and think they are antiquated now Laughing
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