MTB and ADV brakes handing?

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

  1. markk53

    markk53 jack of all trades...

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    Because, much like motorcycles, someone built their bicycles that way.

    Same reason why some motorcycles had foot shift, others had hand shift, some on the right, some on the left, some had first gear up - 4 down, some had neutral at the bottom - 4 or 5 up, some had rotary shifting going n 1 2 3 4 n 1 2 3 4, some actually had front brakes on the left when there were foot clutches. Until something becomes regulated, there are no explanations.

    Why do some countries run on the left side of the road while most go on the left side? Some people started it out that way.

    There doesn't have to be any reason. The only reason why most bikes are set up the way they are now is because of federal regulations in a number of countries. I am not sure of it, maybe someone works in a bike shop can tell us if a new bicycle has to have the brakes set up with the front on the left, rear on the right required by gov't regulations.
    #41
  2. Dr Bombay

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

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    Thanks for all the feedback. Very interesting to read all the comments. Clearly no right or wrong just personal preference. I do find myself pulling left leaver when hard braking on my Tiger, and thus loose engine braking, but its a habit that could be broken. That said, if the winter is long and cold (and I need stuff to do inside mid feb) I may try swapping my 3 MTBs over to right hand front brake and give it a try.
    #42
  3. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

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    Back when bicycle brakes were connected with cables, I used to switch to the moto configuration. Then I loaned a bike to my son who promptly launched over the bars when he thought he was grabbing the rear brake but it was the front. Now, I ride both motos and bicycles often enough that I can make the switch with just a few front brake pumps on the start of the bicycle ride and my brain is reset to bicycle mode. However, for the last couple of years, I've been using a Rekluse clutch with their left hand rear brake setup. That makes it a little harder to switch back to the bicycle configuration but so far, no over-the-bars braking mistakes.
    #43
  4. motu

    motu Loose Pre Unit

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    I've never had a bicycle with a left hand front brake in my life - is it a US thing ?
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  5. SRG

    SRG Long timer

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    No solely a US thing (there was an Aussie here who said his bikes have been LHFB) but a 100% a stupid thing.
    #45
  6. Plaka

    Plaka Brevis illi vita est

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    the advantage is that for most people the right hand is stronger. for a cable operated brake that strength is needed because the front wheel has more traction. most of the braking is up front. if you are left handed put the front cable operated brake on the left.
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  7. SRG

    SRG Long timer

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    Dammit, the post you quoted of mine should say RIGHT.

    Which is the 2 wheeled standard. The only reason it is done differently is that some have conditioned to do so, for no good reason.
    #47
  8. Plaka

    Plaka Brevis illi vita est

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    dyslexics are teeple poo.
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  9. Midwesterner

    Midwesterner Adventurer

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    I've been bicycling a lot longer than I've been motorcycling. So for me, switching the bicycle brakes would cause a much bigger problem than it would solve.

    Anyway, I noticed that I have somewhat unconsciously developed a newish mountain bike habit since I started motorcycling. At the beginning of a fast and/or low traction downhill, I will cover the right lever (rear brake) with two fingers and cover the left lever with just one finger. I guess this helps me remember which hand is connected to which end of the bike.
    #49
  10. LuciferMutt

    LuciferMutt Rides slow bike slow

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    I ride both frequently. I have never once felt the need to switch the levers around. It's just a mindset muscle memory thing -- when I'm on the MTB, front brake is the the left lever and on the motorcycles, it's the right lever. Your mind will flip the switch as soon as you get off one and onto the other. It's not a problem, mostly because both levers on a bicycle are brakes, while only one on a motorcycle is a brake.
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  11. markk53

    markk53 jack of all trades...

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    Yeah, you know, that thing about the north hemisphere and the south hemisphere. Cross the equator and the brakes switch sides. :lol3
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  12. motu

    motu Loose Pre Unit

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    So why isn't my motorcycle brake on the left if that's the case ?
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  13. scottrnelson

    scottrnelson Mr. Dual Sport Rider

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    I swapped my mountain bike brakes over one time to see if it would help - make the right lever the front brake on everything. I've been riding both bicycles and motorcycles for so long that I automatically know which brakes do what on both, so I switched it back after just a few days. I've really never been confused about which lever does what on any of them.

    So it wasn't worth the minor bother to switch in my case.
    #53
  14. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Smoove, Smoove like velvet.

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    Mine doesn't.

    I can't swap between gp and standard shift, and I have the brakes flipped on my bicycles as well.
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  15. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    About 15 years ago I switched all my mtb to right hand front brake - Aussie/Moto style.

    My wife and daughter ride this way.

    The bicycle brake lever system is based on a 100+ yr old outdated French system. It's designed for your right/powerful hand to stop the then powerful rear brake.

    Those in the know moved forward years ago.
    #55
  16. markk53

    markk53 jack of all trades...

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    Golly neds, ya got me! I owe you a shout if I ever get down under... will it make me left handed? :lol2
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  17. sky44

    sky44 Been here awhile

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    Gives me no issues. I've been riding mountain bikes for much longer... The bikes are so different in so many ways that my brain doesn't get mixed up.
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  18. motu

    motu Loose Pre Unit

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    Well, I'm lefthanded - should I put my motorcycle brake on the left bar so my dominant hand can apply full power to stop ?
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  19. markk53

    markk53 jack of all trades...

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    Only if you are in the the western hemisphere... :confused::jack
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  20. tentative_rider

    tentative_rider Wanna Be On Gravel

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    I have been riding mountain bikes and motorcycles for decades, but the brake lever location has never affected my ability to ride either one interchangeably.
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