Importance Of Brakes
Brakes are an extremely important component of bicycles. They allow the rider to control when the vehicle will stop. This is especially useful when riding downhill or encountering an obstacle.
A good set of brakes will respond quickly and force the bike to come to an immediate stop. The brake controls are found on the handlebars and are connected to cables which run to the wheels. When the brake controls are pressed a cable contracts slowing down and stopping the motion of the wheel.
All road safe bikes need to have adequate brakes. Without them the rider could end up crashing into traffic. It is the responsibility of every bicycle owner to ensure that their own braking system is in working order. Regularly maintaining them and getting them checked by bike mechanics are useful things to do.
The Emergence Of Disc Brakes
In recent years disc brakes have begun to be the most popular braking system for bicycles. They used to only be used on specialist mountain bikes. However, the road bicycle community are now appreciating the benefits of disc brakes too.
Their emergence has also divided opinion upon amongst riders in general. One high profile incident involved professional cyclist Fran Ventoso suffering severe injuries as a result of the disc system. This has led to old school bike owners feeling reluctant to upgrade their brakes.
They have a much more efficient stopping power when compared to older forms of brakes. Therefore riders are able to apply less force to their braking control lever before the bicycle comes to a complete stop. Less hand strength is needed, appealing to a broader range of bike users, as well as preventing muscle fatigue.
There is also an added amount of customisation. Bike owners are able to change their disc rotor for one with a different diameter that better suits their vehicle. Generally speaking, the larger and heavier the bike, the bigger the rotor should be.
All riders want consistency and that is what they will get with a well maintained disc brake system. When they pull the lever they will get a consistent braking force, helping them to judge how much pressure they should apply each time. The main downside is that wheels can lock up and cause potential crashes if the brakes are not properly connected.