Secondly, I must post the TK inspired disclaimer, one more time:
NOTE: Large doses of "my opinion" will be handed out in gloppy dollops today. You've been forewarned..
here), is the "all-arounder" that I think makes sense for the meat and potatoes of the cycling populace. Yes- I would likely "like" it as well, but that's beside the point!
Secondly, I am neither for, nor against disc brakes on road bikes. I can see why there are reasons someone may want disc brakes on a road bike, but I also see reasons why they are not such a great idea as well. I find it amusing that some folks just blindly accept that disc brakes "solve all the problems" and that cantilever brakes are "retro-grouch components" worthy of the dust bin. The truth, in my opinion, is somewhere in the middle of those two thoughts.
Let me start out with a scenario: Let's say disc brakes were the only choice you have ever had in brakes for cycling. Okay? So, along comes some whiz-bang engineer who declares that a wheel's rim can do double duty!
It can be a rotor and a rim, all at the same time! We simply move the caliper outwards, which should give us great power and modulation, if the "calipers" are correctly designed and set up. This will allow us to ditch the weight of that stainless steel rotor, make the mounting points less heavy, and less of a strain on the frame and wheels. The hub flanges can now be centered and wheels should theoretically be stronger. Overall, we think the system will actually save several grams over current disc brake technology.
What if that was the way things went? Sure- we know the pitfalls of caliper and cantilever brakes: Hard to set up, don't work sometimes in inclement weather, and are less powerful. Right? Isn't that the "party line" on cantilever brakes these days?
- Hard To Set Up: And disc brakes are not? Especially mechanical disc brakes, which any mechanic will tell you, need to be meticulously set up with proper housings to get maximum braking potential. Of course, no one ever had a disc rotor rubbing, a bent rotor, or a rotor that made noises. Yeah- disc brakes are definitely better than cantilevers in this way. No question, right? Let's not even give credence to the existence of disc brake facing tools, bleeder kits, or shims, because disc brakes rule, and they are just better than cantilever brakes. Duh!
- Cantilever Brakes Don't Work As Well In Bad Weather: Hmm...yeah, probably not. Because, no one ever had disc brake pads wear out in a single ride in bad weather. (Those racers at Moab that one year- that was all a set up by retrogrouch cantilever lovers. Lies!) No one ever had disc brakes make horrible turkey gobbling noises whenever they get wet. (Anyone who says they have is lying, of course.) And everyone knows that the minute it gets ugly out, everyone runs out and finds their cantilever brakes suck, and won't stop them at all, and swear off cycling forever. They should ride disc brakes. Dummies! No one ever lived that rode cantilever brakes in inclement weather, everyone knows this.
- Cantilevers Are Less Powerful: Yep, another no-brainer. Hydraulic disc brakes rule! (Never mind that trials riders- arguably the cyclists who need the most powerful brakes in cycling, have used hydraulic, canti mounted rim brakes for..... well never mind. They obviously don't count!)
Okay, food for thought, for sure. That's it for this series for now. Thanks for reading.