Brakes overrated?

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6/20/2018 5:40 AM

Several times over the years I've seen guys put in good rides with "no brake" (witness Barcia last weekend). Makes me wonder...for all the fawning we do over the brakes on modern bikes...are they overrated? At the pro level, amazing OEM brakes aren't good enough, so they put on billet calipers, big rotors, etc. Then Barcia goes out a gets a 3rd with no brake at all? Seems like old Schwinn bike brakes would suffice for most guys. I had this epiphany a few years ago when I restored an 84' RM250 for VMX and discovered that I absolutely loved the old dual leading-show drum brake on that thing. So progressive and easy to modulate and still enough power to lock the wheel with a man-sized, 2-finger squeeze. The rear suspension was really good too, but that's another story. Anyhow I started hating modern brakes after that...too touchy, just altogether too much for a 225-pound thing. I know all you pro weekend warriors who "feel frame flex" and such will disagree and call me names, but I know there are some of you slowly nodding in agreement.

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6/20/2018 5:48 AM

Ronnie mac once removed his front brake because it was useless when the throttle is wide open

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6/20/2018 5:51 AM

NO BRAKES??? MY FAVURITE RIDER IS BRAKE WHARTON BECUZ HE IS FORM TEXUS!

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6/20/2018 5:53 AM

rmoto003 wrote:

NO BRAKES??? MY FAVURITE RIDER IS BRAKE WHARTON BECUZ HE IS FORM TEXUS!

I thought everyone always mentioned "Matt Bisceglia" when talking about Texas SUZUKI IS THE FASTEST

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6/20/2018 5:54 AM

You can do without them, and have less unsprung weight. It's cool till you need them. Ever watch speedway? With 4t compression braking and 1 brake you can do OK. No different than taking the seat off.

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2015 Beta 500 RS, history: 99 KTM 300, 87 CR250, 84 KLR 600, 82 GPZ 550, 81 KX 250, 80 KX 250, 79 Montesa 414 VE, 78 250 VB, 77 360 VB, 76 360 VA, 75 YZ 125, 74 TM 125, 72 TS 125, 60's West Bend Go Boy Kart

6/20/2018 6:33 AM

Brakes are over rated, they only slow you down.

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2018 KTM 250sx
Instagram CamaroAJ

6/20/2018 6:39 AM

rmoto003 wrote:

NO BRAKES??? MY FAVURITE RIDER IS BRAKE WHARTON BECUZ HE IS FORM TEXUS!

beat me to it. lol

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6/20/2018 6:48 AM

Ktm brakes mo betta than Yamaha brakes.

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GP740
Since 1987

6/20/2018 7:26 AM

Worse brakes make you go faster...that’s why I choose Honda

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6/20/2018 7:58 AM

Stopping is overrated...

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6/20/2018 8:19 AM
Edited Date/Time: 6/20/2018 8:33 AM

"You can only go as fast as your front brakes will allow."

-Ricky Carmichael

(context: he was talking about supercross)

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6/20/2018 9:36 AM

Xracer wrote:

Several times over the years I've seen guys put in good rides with "no brake" (witness Barcia last weekend). Makes me ...more

My Kid had the best race of his 12 years racing with no brakes, literally smoked someone he could never beat.
Makes me think he's dragged the brake forever

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6/20/2018 9:56 AM

Ask Josh Coppins if he would have liked a working brake in the 2007 MXGP

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Riding is Freedom, Freedom is Riding!

6/20/2018 10:01 AM

The faster I got on MTB the less I used the brakes. Just my observation

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6/20/2018 10:06 AM

Huh. When it comes to crashing, it's not the speed that'll hurt you, it's the sudden stop.

I'd guess good riders can go 70-75% of their normal speed with only one functioning brake. To get to their fastest laps, they need both to perform like normal.

I'd also think that with the available engine braking it's easier to pull that off in the four-stroke era.

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6/20/2018 10:44 AM

Best brakes in the world don’t do shit without traction.

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6/20/2018 10:54 AM

Without front brakes is easier to me than without back brakes. No such thing as going fast with no brakes!

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6/20/2018 11:14 AM

When I first started riding I never even touched the rear brake. I think it was a habit carried over from riding bicycles with both brakes on the bars. Obviously I wasn't fast, but I still use the front significantly more than the rear.

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6/20/2018 12:05 PM
Edited Date/Time: 6/20/2018 12:06 PM

^ I rarely use my rear brake. Partly due to being tall and having big feet, seems like I could never modulate it well. I just learned not to use it, and actually remove the teeth from the lever to allow my oaf feet to not catch on it. That said I abuse the front brake severely and cant imagine not having it. Plus I find myself slightly dragging the front in turn to keep the front end planted better--- not sure this is just a thing I do or if it actually makes a difference. The bigger and most aggressive is best for me, but I could easily loose the rear setup and not miss it!

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6/20/2018 12:13 PM

I just raced Mammoth. Having really good & easy to modulate brakes, by Galfer, made passing on the downhill a helluva lot of fun!

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I ripped a start from Egypt and I was happy about that.

6/20/2018 12:16 PM

Im not seeing many places at High Point where you are proper on the brakes,

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6/20/2018 12:22 PM

Brakes? Oh, you mean the coward prongs? Yeah, you don't need 'em.

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6/20/2018 12:52 PM

They only use brakes for stopping?

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Twitter: @ftemoto
Instagram: @mstusiak

6/20/2018 1:12 PM

i remeber JS7 2009 yz450f only went through one set of front pads for the whole sx season cuz he used it so little. and he won his first SX in 2005 with a failed brake.

with engine braking you can get away with using very little braking or if you spend enough time practicing without touching it you can do laps where you almost never use and instead just throw the bike over in corners, but thats some pretty high level confidence

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"If you feel in control, you're not going fast enough" ~Mario Andretti

6/20/2018 1:42 PM

fox1nz wrote:

Ask Josh Coppins if he would have liked a working brake in the 2007 MXGP

He deserved that title, felt gutted for him

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6/20/2018 1:46 PM

pinch Seats are overrated as well
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6/20/2018 1:48 PM

The opposite of a panic rev a tap on the rear brake dips the front end down. I use it quite a bit for that.

A little thing I do sometimes when laid over accelerating through a rutted berm is give a mini tap to the front brake while still on the gas. It keeps me settled in and from popping up or out to soon. It’s on tight turns mostly. Barely any pressure at all to the lever, but it works for me.

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6/20/2018 2:17 PM

A few years back I was dicing with a buddy in the 50+ class at Portland MX in Michigan. I got a little overzealous and took us both out in a corner snapping off his front brake lever. He showed up at the line for the second moto still missing the lever because he didn't have a spare and we couldn't find one to borrow. he proceeded to whip my butt and win the second moto! I told him afterword that I will never race him again without him having his front brake because it makes him slower...lol.

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6/20/2018 2:21 PM

fox1nz wrote:

Ask Josh Coppins if he would have liked a working brake in the 2007 MXGP

Andy_Greenney wrote:

He deserved that title, felt gutted for him

He did deserve it, and he thinks this subject of brakes been over rated is arse. Haha

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Riding is Freedom, Freedom is Riding!

6/20/2018 3:53 PM

This question is easily answered. Just disable your brakes before your next race/ride. You'll either be faster, slower, or dead. No matter the outcome you'll have your answer.

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If it ain't yer's don't take it, If it ain't the truth dont say it, If it ain't right don't do it...Marcus Aurelius