Is 2018 the year proper race bikes with discs gain momentum?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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alcatraz
Posts: 728
Joined: Mon Aug 29, 2016 11:19 am

by alcatraz

I'm a light guy. I absolutely love that people switch to disc brakes because I can score some really good deals on lightweight calipers. :lol:

/a

by Weenie


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wheelbuilder
Posts: 400
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:10 am

by wheelbuilder

spdntrxi wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 4:41 am
wheelbuilder wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 4:26 am
Although I do espouse my love for rim brakes on the road bike, I am not against them at all. I have hydraulic disc on both my mountain bike (orbea Alma) and on my CX bike (Kona Jake the Snake) I love them for singletrack/crappy weather and think there is a definite need for them in certain situations. If I get behind a slow moving car on a long descent, I will pull over and wait five minutes so I can have a clear descent. This disrupts my flow for sure and it is definitely something that is always in the back of my mind.....(overheating carbon clinchers) It has never happened, but I do worry about it. If I was equipped with disc, I'm sure I would have better peace of mind. Just something I deal with, as I prefer rim brakes on the racy road bike.

only time I've wanted disc brakes is a few years ago at Levi's GF getting caught behind the fatality before the bridge and we had to ride the brakes single file down -16% gradiants... my hands were tired.

Yes. I didn't ride that, but was working that day. There were actually a couple of carbon clincher failures weren't there?

Kazyole
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2013 1:45 am
Location: NYC

by Kazyole

Bordcla wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 2:58 pm
...
No one would dispute that disc brakes are functionally better and are much more optimal braking system. The pushback is 100% a reluctance to change, trying to argue that the reasons for preferring an objectively inferior and more compromised braking system are not simply that: a mere resistance to change.

Well, good news: no one forces you to throw away your existing bike if you like it!
They are functionally better. I think the argument from most of us who see no reason to switch isn't that we don't want a better system. It's that we don't see the current tradeoffs (weight, aero, the expense of buying a whole new frame, and I guess aesthetics) to be worth the the marginal gain. We see rim brakes as a perfectly adequate system, and let's be real most of us don't ride in Strade Bianchi-esque conditions with any regularity. Hell, most amateurs (myself included) avoid riding in the rain wherever possible not because of anything to do with braking, but because it's miserable.

As the tech matures, I'm sure the weight and aero penalties will be reduced. Same thing happened with Di2. When it first came out it was heavier than mechanical and you had to have ugly wires all over your frame. Now it's all elegantly internally routed and the weight penalty goes in the other direction. I don't necessarily believe that discs will get lighter than the kind of exotic rim brakes we buy on this forum, but I do believe the gap will shrink over time. If in a couple years I can build a disc brake bike at a weight penalty of 100-200 grams instead of +500 grams, I'd probably consider it for my next bike.

Your last sentence is basically the crux of it for me. I like my bike. It works well. And it's far lighter than what I'd be able to build with discs right now. And while I acknowledge that discs are very marginally better in ideal conditions and considerably better in subpar conditions, right now it's just not enough to get me to want to spend the money.

JWTS
Posts: 24
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 10:44 pm

by JWTS

guyc wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 8:46 am
23 pages and no-one will have changed their position.
Random guys on the internet aren't going to change my position. Here's what did: going from my rain bike to my race bike. Last couple of years I put up with it, in part because I was racing sporadically and working too much/riding my bike not enough. I finally had enough though. I have hydraulic discs on my MTB and my rain bike, and my race bike feels absolutely horrible in terms of braking feel. Good aluminum rims, swisstop pads, DA calipers. The bike just feels terrible compared to my rain bike.

I won't make any claims that it's "faster" or "safer", but without question, my new disc brake road bike is simply more enjoyable to ride, and if it means it's 1/2 a lb heavier and has 1W more drag (Merida's estimate of their disc bike vs the rim version), I'm totally cool with it.

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Miller
Posts: 1229
Joined: Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:54 pm
Location: Reading, UK

by Miller

I'm going over to discs but it's not just or only about brake performance: I really like how use of disc brakes opens up bike design for wider tyres. I see a lot of benefit in that.

Of course if you object to discs on purist grounds you're also unlikely to feel benevolent towards 30mm tyres on a road bike...

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Lelandjt
Posts: 405
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2016 7:10 am

by Lelandjt

Miller wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 2:36 pm
I'm going over to discs but it's not just or only about brake performance: I really like how use of disc brakes opens up bike design for wider tyres. I see a lot of benefit in that.

Of course if you object to discs on purist grounds you're also unlikely to feel benevolent towards 30mm tyres on a road bike...
This thread is about "race bikes" and it's assumed we're talking about normal road racing, not Roubaix or gravel. 30mm tires are not being considered by these users.

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Miller
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Joined: Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:54 pm
Location: Reading, UK

by Miller

Kind of a sweeping statement there. 3T Strada is designed around 28mm tyres. Even for race bikes discs offer new design options.

TobinHatesYou
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Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:02 pm

by TobinHatesYou

Many new rims are 29mm wide and optimized for tires that measure 28-30mm.

C36
Posts: 193
Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2017 3:24 am

by C36

Lelandjt wrote:
Miller wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 2:36 pm
I'm going over to discs but it's not just or only about brake performance: I really like how use of disc brakes opens up bike design for wider tyres. I see a lot of benefit in that.

Of course if you object to discs on purist grounds you're also unlikely to feel benevolent towards 30mm tyres on a road bike...
This thread is about "race bikes" and it's assumed we're talking about normal road racing, not Roubaix or gravel. 30mm tires are not being considered by these users.
Tell this to manufacturers that equip their bikes with 28 or 32mm tires (can't remember if was trek or Scott having 32mm on road disc bikes). Directly from a manufacturer representative mouth "bigger tires allow you to feel how better you can brake"... the type of arguments bringing doubt in "value"...





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TobinHatesYou
Posts: 957
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:02 pm

by TobinHatesYou

I feel a hell of a lot more confident leaning into a corner on a descent with "28mm" tires measuring 30mm than "25mm" tires measuring 26.5mm. Depends on the rubber compound too. All the same rules apply. If you are a sprinter and the stage is flat, you're going to be on an aero bike with deeper, slightly narrower wheels (and tires.) If you're a domestique or GCer on a rolling or mountain stage, then you might be on something shallower and wider.

spdntrxi
Posts: 1420
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2013 6:11 pm

by spdntrxi

man I just "upgaded" my bike to accept 28s.. now you want me to get 30+.. I'll pass

C36
Posts: 193
Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2017 3:24 am

by C36

Bordcla wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 2:58 pm
...
No one would dispute that disc brakes are functionally better and are much more optimal braking system. The pushback is 100% a reluctance to change, trying to argue that the reasons for preferring an objectively inferior and more compromised braking system are not simply that: a mere resistance to change.

Well, good news: no one forces you to throw away your existing bike if you like it!
Functionally better: in absolute nobody dispute this... would double front brake be "functionally better" technically yes... then why don't we go for it? simply because your glorified braking system is also a compromise.
Now, is the Disc-Compromise giving an overall "better" set-up than a rim-brake... we can agree to disagree but how a less responsive frame (don't understand how this doesn't come #1 in the discussions), heavier set-up, more rub-prone, wheel swapping problem-prone, maintenance heavier can't overcome a "smoother, easier, more consistent braking"... the math doesn't add up for most of the cases.
So you can keep the "100% change reluctance" and see that some people analyze things and don't take the marking arguments as facts (still thinking in this argument "we put 32mm tires so the Client can feel how much more he can brake").

Now I could understand someone living in the Alps, Colorado or Colombia, riding regardless the weather conditions, liking to push on the descents and putting comfort as priority, to select disc brakes, I wouldn't dispute it... but what % of us live in mountains-region, and out of those xx% how many ride regardless the weather condition and out of those small x% how many descent so fast that they feel the need to have perfect braking system in all conditions?
That's where Marketing teams are good at... seeing how many disc brakes I saw last week in Houston that is flat as a pancake, they are doing a good job and to loop back with the initial topic... likely 2018 will see disc gaining momentum.

pdlpsher1
Posts: 1413
Joined: Thu Jul 19, 2012 6:09 pm
Location: CO

by pdlpsher1

Currently I'm running Conti 4K S 23mm on the front and 25mm on the rear. I've tried Conti 4K S 28mm's but the tire has a 60g. weight penalty per tire compared to the 25mm's. The 25mm's measure 27mm as is and frankly I don't think I need anything wider than 27mm especially if they have add a rotational weight penalty. Also with the 28mm Contis I couldn't run my favorite tube which is the Conti Supersonic. The tire got so big I had to use a heavier tube. Like all things in life there comes a point of diminishing returns.....

dricked
Posts: 53
Joined: Tue Jan 09, 2018 1:57 pm

by dricked

Wider tires and a smoother ride is quite nice in Canada with all the frost heaved asphalt.

mattsurf
Posts: 20
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2018 8:26 pm

by mattsurf

Last night I was cycling on my CX bike to the swimming pool. I was cycling around 34kph (21mph) when a car turned left directly infront of me, I managed to avoid the car, however, if I had my rim brake road bike I am not so sure I would have done. Firstly it was damp, secondly, because the brakes have much better modulation I didn't lock up the rear, and finally as it was my CX bike, I had 37mm Scwalbe Marathon Supreme tyres.

Cycling in busy urban areas, a disc bike with wider tyres is also an advantage. My CX bike is not as fast as my road bike for sure, however, the difference is only around 7%-10% slower over a 80km (50mile) ride with some good climbs. I realise that this is an issue for people on this forum (including myself), however, for most cyclists, or people who only have one bike, a disc bike with the ability to take wider tyres is an obvious choice.

I do understand why many people here are defending rim brakes, and for many people, depending where you live and the conditions you ride in, rim brakes make better sense than discs, when you consider the weight and cost penalty (I don't buy the aero penalty). What does annoy me is people belittling me because I chose a disc road bike over a rim brake.

Unfortunately for people who love their rim brakes, I believe that the choice will diminish, and R&D budgets developing rim brakes from Campag, Shimano and SRAM will also be cut, however, as long as there is an underlying demand from diehards, some niche producers of frames and calipers will probably continue to provide rim brakes for some time to come

by Weenie


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