MTB and ADV brakes handing?

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

  1. racerron

    racerron Liv It

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    Always switched my mtb cables.

    Although just bought a new mtb and started riding it as is, when I finally did switch it to motorcycle style I had to relearn how to use the brake 's again on the mtb.

    So next time i'm not changing nothing. Going to let my brain do all the work.
    #21
  2. abhibeckert

    abhibeckert Long timer

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    Speaking slowly hasn't helped mate - especially since your two posts contradict each other. Is left standard or right standard?

    I don't believe there is a standard at least as far as bicycles are concerned. I've ridden ones with the front brake on the left, on the right, and with no front brake at all and for a while when I was young/stupid I even rode a bicycle (for years) that I could only slow down flintstone style... or just jump off and hit the ground sprinting.

    The bicycle I ride currently has the brakes on the opposite side to a motorbike, but it doesn't bother me too much perhaps because the riding position is so different. With a mountain bike I would swap them over.
    #22
  3. SRG

    SRG Long timer

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    Too much trouble over a small thing.

    A shame that a small thing is so easily screwed up.

    One last time - what is the advantage (on a bicycle) of having the front brake on the left?
    #23
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  4. jockboyer

    jockboyer jockinafrica

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    Historically the Italians as do the Brits install right front brakes on their bikes, I think initially it was the better lines of the cable housing they went with.
    My first mechanic was an Italian so I have always ridden right front on my bicycles... going to motorbikes was easy. Though the adjustment if you have them switched as most have said is not too difficult keeping them all the same just leaves one less thing to think about when you are grabbing a handfull of brakes going downhill or into a turn, or.....
    I will say that the right front brake set up on a bicycle is a minority, just make sure if you lend your bicycle to someone you tell them it is a right front set up!
    #24
  5. markk53

    markk53 jack of all trades...

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    Switched on my bikes to right hand front brake. Was it worth the effort, I don't know, I didn't ride a bicycle with a left front brake. I was riding motorcycles before I went to a multi-speed bike with hand brakes so it was kind of a no brainer. When I built the bike I swapped the brakes... I was working as a bicycle mechanic when I bought my first multi-speed bike.


    Imagine that. Non-motorcyclists that swapped brake sides. Brits probably because they seem to do everything different when it comes to driving. Italians probably because they're Italian and no one is going to tell them what to do!
    #25
  6. VanXR

    VanXR nOOb/NooB/noob/NOob/NOOB/ Supporter

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    Always switch mine. I just like it that way until my buddy says, "Can I try your bike out" Never ends well....
    #26
  7. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    If you're signalling with the left arm you're braking with the right hand.

    Right = rear and you're less likely to go over the bars if you grab a handful of brake in an emergency

    M
    #27
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  8. SRG

    SRG Long timer

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    ^^what rubbish^^
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  9. millican

    millican Been here awhile

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    I have my road bike in the garage now to switch the brakes so that the front brake is on the right. It was never a problem until I bought a Burgman 400, which has both brakes on the handlebars instead of the rear brake at the foot.
    As for using the left hand to signal, that's a relic of the days before cars had electric lights. Since you couldn't reach the right window, you used your left arm to point over the top, so to speak. When they put lights on cars, they had this novel idea of putting the right signal on the right side instead of on top of the left light. On a bike, you can reach the right side as well as the left, and it's pretty darn clear when you're pointing to the left or right, so why are cyclists still expected to signal like they're in a pre-electric-light car when they never had the limitations of such a vehicle in the first place?
    #29
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  10. uncle milkbone

    uncle milkbone Been here awhile

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    One last time - what is the advantage (on a bicycle) of having the front brake on the left?

    Right hand shifts the gears so easier to use left hand for braking and right hand for shifting so right isn't doing everything, and easier to feather front brake with left hand. Never even think about which brake when switching from moto to mtn bike and back. YMMV.
    #30
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  11. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    Having a wide variety of bikes, I find the suggestion there's a "correct" answer to the question amusing.
    [​IMG]
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    #31
  12. markk53

    markk53 jack of all trades...

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    Fixed it so rubbish covers both.

    If there is some problem using the front brake there is a problem with the rider, not where the brake is. Sound like all those "don't touch the front brake, you'll flip over frontwards" old biker guys. They say the same crap as the first post.

    As for the shifting, with shifting in the levers or on thumb shifters, no big deal. I don't have to think about it either, I started out with the brakes reversed on the bicycle. I would say this, I rode a Bultaco Sherpa T with left foot brake/right shift and a variety of right foot brake/left shift bikes. My brother, Yamaha TY250, and I traded bikes one day. As I went over a drop off I had a real problem trying to brake with the shift lever on the Yamaha. Sometimes that "no problem" thing doesn't quite work right.
    #32
  13. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    Then come up with a better explanation.

    M
    #33
  14. uncle milkbone

    uncle milkbone Been here awhile

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    SRG said:
    ^^what rubbish^^

    :rofl:rofl:rofl:rofl
    #34
  15. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    [​IMG]

    That's why.

    Personally, I don't know a whole lot of people that know the left arm pointing up means I'm turning right, so I just point to the right. If you're close enough, it *may* and I stress may mean the right arm pointing where I'm going is obscured.

    I've been pointing left with my arm pretty much straight out while riding on the DY and STILL got passed on my left just as I was about to turn. If I didn't always do that last head check, I'd be a hood ornament right now.

    M
    #35
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  16. SRG

    SRG Long timer

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    I've ridden/driven plenty of bikes (Hodaka, Bultaco) and cars (right hand drive) with non standard controls. Being used to one setup is (to me) obviously preferable. When "panic" reactions take over, I don't want to make a mistake.
    #36
  17. brianjonesphoto

    brianjonesphoto Hacked off

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    I've ridden bikes more that twice as long as I've been on motorcycles and have not issues swapping between. BUT my son now has an Oset 20 and I've putted around a very little on that. I cannot for the life of me get used to the idea of a left had rear brake. Every time I've been on the Oset i keep reaching for the foot brake that isn't there. I rode a friends Oset 24 and had the same issue.
    #37
  18. SRG

    SRG Long timer

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    Automatic transmissions in cars (and bikes) allow some freedom in control placement. Has anyone* ever thought about switching them around?

    No? Gee, why not?

    *excluding those w/ a good reason.
    #38
  19. ydarg

    ydarg Miscreant

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    No. Road/MTB/CX bikes are all stock bicycle layouts....front brake is on the left.

    I ride by muscle memory, not by actively thinking "apply front brake with right hand.....oh wait, it's left now". When you start thinking stuff like that, you start getting in trouble in my experience.
    #39
  20. bwringer

    bwringer Gimpy, Yet Alacritous

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    Pretty much lifelong bicycle and motorcycle rider, and I've never really had issues switching.

    That said, it is noticeable and a little odd for a little while. I've definitely considered switching the bicycles. And then I ride a little further and forget all about it.

    In the aviation world, pilots never seem to have any trouble switching hands in aircraft with side sticks. It's a question Airbus drivers get a lot, and none of them consider it an issue.
    #40