Do I REALLY need Both front and back brakes?

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by StrontiumEthics, Jul 29, 2008.

  1. StrontiumEthics

    StrontiumEthics Motored Bikes Sponsor

    Im putting an engine on my mountain bike, however im getting the sprocket than Andyinchville sells the disc mount, so that means I lose my rear disc brakes, however, I've been riding without back brakes for some time now just to see how its like, and im quite comfortable with it. I am a pretty light rider, so when I had my rear brakes install the bike will continuously skid out on me. So my question here is Do I really need both brakes? I do not normally ride in rain, or anything else, and do not ride very long distances. I just cruise around, and enjoy the sites. Sofar my front brake hold up just fine, I mostly use them anyway. (avid BB7). When I get the engine will will basically rely on compression braking for back braking. I know my limits I will not go 30 mph on a city block, so I will not require much braking. Based on my Dillema do you guys think I still need my back brake, if I do I will need a whole new frame and I just brought this one. So wasting money right there if I do.

  2. SirJakesus

    SirJakesus Guest

    Just remember when you need to stop quickly while taking a turn or if you're on loose or slippery surfaces you're going to get very intimate with the ground really fast if you're only using front brakes. It's your show though good luck. I wouldn't ride without front and rear brakes personally.
  3. Pablo

    Pablo Motored Bikes Sponsor

    Absolutely you need both brakes - especially with an engine! Engine braking is a bit overated in a small low compression engine.
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2008
  4. StrontiumEthics

    StrontiumEthics Motored Bikes Sponsor

    That means I will have to buy another frame, which is alot more money, and transfer all my parts. Its like I might as well buy a new bicycle. Lol. I dont got the kinda money yet. And besides I think you are underratting my front brakes, when I ride my bike i ride at approximately 20-28 MPH. and i stop more than quick enough to take a turn, In addition when I had my rear brakes on my bike I never used it? There are hardly any elevations where I live, mainly flatlanding. And sofar my front brakes along serve me more than good.
  5. StrontiumEthics

    StrontiumEthics Motored Bikes Sponsor

    These engines are low compression?i didnt know, However when I had both brakes installed I didnt use the back brakes, at all, as of now my front brakes served me more than good. There are hardly any obsticalls, or elevations where I live so... The streets are very wide, and I will not use my engine during traffic, or on sidewalks, if you minus all of that, then Emergency braking is at a minimum. With these wide streets I hardly need to brake at all. I think Ill just hold on using fronts,but when I get some extra money, ill get a new frame, etc. think thats good idea? or do I really really need it at this moment,when I install the engine.
  6. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    Well, it's really up to you. If you are looking for people to tell you it's a good idea to use only the front brakes, that person will be hard to find. The odds are nothing will happen, but 1 in 1000 odds are only good until you hit that 1 time. Like I said, it's up to you. Same with helmets or any other safety devise. You make your choice and take your chances.

    I have 2 back brakes (coaster and caliper) and am adding a front even though it is not the look I want...and my bike is all about the looks. However, I really want to come back from every ride.
  7. Pablo

    Pablo Motored Bikes Sponsor

    Yes they are pretty low compression, relatively speaking. Under 8:1.

    As stated by Hough, it's up to you, not us.
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2008
  8. sabrewalt

    sabrewalt Guest

    Brakes Fail

    I have personal experience. Brakes Fail. In my case it was my rear brake. The front brake saved me from injury.
  9. SirJakesus

    SirJakesus Guest

    Thanks pab!~
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 30, 2008
  10. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    In Pablo's defense (not that he really needs it)- his device will allow the rear disk to be retained, so it's a legitimate suggestion.

    However, as I have no stake in that kit....and in fact, can't use it on my bike, I'll suggest it.

    Have you thought about a shifter kit?
  11. crazygringo

    crazygringo Member

    If you really wanna ride with 1 brake. Nothing we say here is gonna change your mind.
    The majority of the posts say, yes, get both brakes working. I agree with the majority.
  12. Madwack

    Madwack Member

    simple as it gets...on dry pavement with only a front brake will be ever try and brake on pavement with gravel and u are gonna go down..if that front wheel locks....the fron will will dig in and begin to go sideways..taking u and the bike down....releasing the brake will save you..but....dont do it dude....the pain from hitting the pavement is no fun

    trust me i just finnished wipen out on my Mountain bike...hip and ribs ooo sore

  13. Scottm

    Scottm Guest

    I bet if you look at the rear of the frame where the seat stays leave the seat post, there should be a small bar connecting the stays and it has a small hole in it. That's made so you can add cantilever or center pull brakes to the rear. Or fenders. No need for a new bike.
    Here are some good articles on braking techniques and various brakes.
    He does teach about using mostly the front brakes.

    What kind of motor will you be using? Sometimes my Happy Times throttle sticks wide open. I have had to depend on both front and rear and the soles of my shoes.
  14. crazygringo

    crazygringo Member

    Race car drivers all believe that the brakes are the most important part of the car.
  15. crazygringo

    crazygringo Member

    Another thought came to mind for me about this thread....

    the broken bones don't hurt as much as having to lay there while they dig gravel out of your back?
  16. Simonator

    Simonator Guest

    I only have front brakes, but I live dangerously.
  17. Simon_A

    Simon_A Member

    Scottm has best idea, its what I was gonna suggest, disk brake at the front and rim at the rear.
    Most of your braking is performed with the front brakes, but as stated in low traction situations you need the rears. With just the front brakes the rear end gets light with hard braking, the rear brakes keep the tail of the bike stable.

    Failing that the "sick bike" conversion allows you to keep both sets of disks. Its the planned next evolution of my bike. Happy time, front and rear disk brakes, and geared output on the engine.
  18. HI Strontium,

    If you want to have disc brakes in the rear AND run a sprocket mounted to the disc hub itself our "top hat" disc hub adapter may be the ticket for you (provided you have enough clearance to move your disc OUT (away from the spokes) about .4 inch ....I am working on the final spacers to make small and precise adjustments and will experiment on a disc brake equipped bike I recently bought before making them generally available for sale.

    Hope this helps you.

  19. SirJakesus

    SirJakesus Guest

    LOL, This coming from the dude that got creamed by an SUV because he was out on a test run at night with no lights :)
    Indeed if you wish to live dangerously nobody is stopping you. It makes for good pictures and stories anyways... most of the time...
  20. jonboy2five

    jonboy2five Member

    slow down...

    i have been riding and racing high performance motocycles ( both street and off-road) for 30 years. the front brake is what stops you, especially on pavement, even on a wet road. racers use the front on both pavement and dirt to slow down, and the rear for control and setting the rear end. BTW braking on wet gravel in the middle of a turn is NEVER advisable. ANY hard braking on a two-wheeler should be done on an UPRIGHT bike. my $.02, and i know from whence i speak...good luck, and just get a rim (v-brake) for the rear.