MTB and ADV brakes handing?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by Dr Bombay, Oct 29, 2019.

  1. Dr Bombay

    Dr Bombay "When you get to a fork in the road, take it" Supporter

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    Hi there, I'm back into motorcycles after 30 year hiatus but ride mountain bikes (MTB) near daily.

    So....all you MTB and adventure riders, have you swapped brake levers on your MTB to front right like on motorcycle? Those that have, was worth the effort or do you adjust from motor to no motor handing w/o error?

    Thnx
    #1
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  2. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    I have not but I know people who did and for road bike too. For me no need my brain adjusts right away.
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  3. shrederscott

    shrederscott Long timer

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    Hi

    I ride both a e-mtb, and a KTM 350.

    I have kept the lines stock on both bikes.

    I have no problems switching between bikes .

    The control differences are greater than the hand levers .. shifting foot / thumb , no rear foot brake, extra dropper post control ect....

    At any rate, I do not find it confusing . I should note I have at least 4 buddies that ride both bikes, and have no issues either with stock set ups.

    But, if you feel need to modify ... why not ? ?

    Scott
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  4. Cedarooner

    Cedarooner Adventurer

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    Race Mtb, enduro and dh at a respectable provincial level in BC. I’m resonably meh/adequate on the Moto. Never had an issue with the brakes and run normal on both.
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  5. uncle milkbone

    uncle milkbone Been here awhile

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    Stock on both, don't even think about switching back and forth.
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  6. GreyThumper

    GreyThumper Long timer

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    I switched the cables on my road and mtbs. It was easy, so might as well try it. And with my right lever controlling the front brakes on my bicycles, it got easier to signal with my left hand while riding in traffic.
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  7. avster

    avster Been here awhile

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    In the UK the standard on bicycles is to have the front brake on the right. I've heard that it was done that way so that when indicating right to turn across traffic (remembering that we drive on the left), you could have a hand on the rear brake for more gentle control. Therefore the same model of bicycle sourced in mainland europe will have a different setup to one sourced in the UK.

    With more modern frame and component designs where the cable routing is angled and optimised, especially on more cramped road bikes the front brake cable can take a slightly strange route for right hand front brake levers. I made the decision years ago to swap all of mine over to left hand front brakes; makes the cabling easier and neater, reduces a strain and/or rub point on some bikes (or sharp cable exit angle from the caliper) and allows me to decelerate with the front brake whilst signalling right. I can, therefore, understand changing it to the right for those who drive on the right hand side. It is strange that bicycle manufacturers get this wrong for both of us :-)

    I can't say it makes any difference to jumping between motorbike and bicycle, it took a little while to get used to on the bicycles without locking up the back in heavy braking.
    #7
  8. suomyer

    suomyer Adventurer

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    I switched brake lines on my MTB after having a near miss with the KTM-1290 . Had to do a quick stop to avoid going wide on a tight corner and found myself almost losing control as I garbed the clutch.... :fpalm..so when under pressure/a panic situation...I guess you never how you are going to react until it happens......especially if you have been going out more on the MTB which was my case.Hope this helps .
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  9. c_m_shooter

    c_m_shooter Ninja Warrior

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    Never had in issue with control of either.
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  10. Doug Just Doug

    Doug Just Doug Silly Party Candidate Supporter

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    Same here -- I ride both and it has never been an issue; has been automatic for so long I guess. Of course, now that you're making me actually think about it, I'll probably eff up and end up on my head or something. :^)
    #10
  11. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    Yes, I put bike front brake levers on the right. I build my bikes, and I see no reason not to.
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  12. norseXL

    norseXL Northman

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    I allways switch the MTB front to right and truly belive it has saved me several times.
    Riding my MTB in the wet rocky root infested trails of Norway mean I'm constantly have to avoid locking up giving excellent practice to train my spinal reflexes.

    Good luck have your spine know the difference when you switch from MTB to motorcycle...
    #12
  13. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    I swapped mine. Then one day when I really needed more front brake, my lizard brain kept grabbing the back and I slid off the road into a bush

    I swapped em back to 'bike normal' and haven't had a problem since

    M
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  14. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    I haven't tried but advise I got was when you switch mount try brakes a few times. Even switching between different motorcycles brakes could be very different or there could be an issue with brakes.q
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  15. SRG

    SRG Long timer

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    Left (Dammit, this should say RIGHT) hand front brake is normal/standard/common sense. On a moto you have no choice, why do it different on a bicycle because you do have a choice? What is the advantage?
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  16. ChaoSS402

    ChaoSS402 Been here awhile

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    I don't know if it's common sense, it can go either way logically. If you've spent your life riding bicycles it's probably strange to try to switch, but if you grew up on motorcycles and are getting into bicycles it might feel more natural to go right hand front brake.
    #16
  17. Edoz

    Edoz n00b sauce

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    I'm a lifelong mountain biker but a new motorcyclist. I've seen plenty of guys who run their MTB brakes switched, but when I got my first motorcycle it never occurred to me. The rest of the control scheme is so different, it's just a totally new thing to learn. I switch back and forth seamlessly.
    #17
  18. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    It's because of history. Originally bicycles had rear brake only and it was mounted to use strong hand. Motorcycles forked before it got standardized and put in law (yes by law in US rear brake on right side) and originally penny-farting and immediately following safety bikes had spoon brake on front wheel.

    https://janheine.wordpress.com/2015/06/05/which-hand-for-which-brake/
    #18
  19. abhibeckert

    abhibeckert Long timer

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    How is that common sense?! It seems pretty much arbitrary to me.
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  20. SRG

    SRG Long timer

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    I'll try to speak slowly - on a motorcycle the front brake must be on the right, because the clutch must on the the left, because the throttle is on the right and you need 2 hands to operate them simultaneously, so, unless you want to rearrange all of the handlebar controls, the front brake must be on the right. As i said, on a bicycle - you do have a choice - But why swap them around from motorcycle standard? What is the advantage? The only reason most of you grew up w/ with them backwards is that the bikes were bought in the US. Most other places don't do this.

    Clear now?
    #20
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