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Offline bonoeuf

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Braking; front only or both?
« on: 13 August, 2010, 07:52:05 PM »
Lets discuss guys and gals.
"My father taught me to work, but not to love it. I never did like to work, and I don't deny it. I'd rather read, tell stories, crack jokes, talk, laugh -- anything but work."
Abraham Lincoln.

Offline Snibor

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #1 on: 13 August, 2010, 08:33:33 PM »
Both,have done since 1964. -Snibor

Offline Roland

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #2 on: 13 August, 2010, 08:36:23 PM »
My personal opinion:

Both if braking hard
both if you need front not to dive too much
front if you are goinh slow/steady enough and you know you will stop (we have linked brakes anyway)
back if slow maneuvering
slow if you need to scrub off a little speed in bends

Offline JJs Esso

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #3 on: 13 August, 2010, 09:36:46 PM »
Seems to me that whatever braking technique works for the rider is the best one.

You do need to take into account road conditions, bike characteristics, circumstances, and personal preferences.  I see stopping distances in tests as being a little like 0-60 figures - fascinating but irrelevant to riding 99% of the time.

What I do know is that over-reliance on the back brake will cause problems and did for JJ.  We fixed the problem by getting her into the habit of using the front brake to the max and did that by using front brake only, which is how I prefer to ride.  End of problems, and she can now build on that as she wants.

The 75/25 figure so often quoted is ancient and pre-dates ABS and disk brakes.  It takes no account of linked brakes or the massive differences in engine braking between bikes.  I for one would rather ditch it than use it as a mantra, and feel my way around any bike I ride.  I have no way of knowing if I am getting it right anyway!  The differences in all the bikes I have owned have been an important and interesting part of motorcycling.  I have had bikes where the back brake was virtually inoperative, and bikes where a touch of back brake would lock the wheel.  I rode accordingly (mostly leaving the damned back brake alone!)

To the person who says I am an old dog that needs to learn some new tricks I would say I agree with the first part.  However, experience touring every Western European country and a few Eastern European ones, from North Cape (before the roads were made up) as far south as Rome, the Trans-Canada Highway end to end, Halifax Nova Scotia to Fairbanks Alaska  and back - all without incident - seems to suggest I am doing something right.

Let me throw a bit of production bike racing and drag racing in there as well, just to complete the personal history. 

However I am not complacent, I continue to learn, and I always bow to greater experience.

Offline GeoffWilson

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #4 on: 13 August, 2010, 09:51:45 PM »
 :460: . . . but if I was answering myself without having just read JJs account above, then have it spot on as to what I do... worked for me for the past six years since returning to biking after long absence...!

Offline cdnford

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #5 on: 14 August, 2010, 01:17:27 AM »
Good place to discuss this topic .
Now I will say this in todays world with the internet it is not hard to find answers to any questions ,some research is all that is needed .
So that is what I have done and my view after all that and watching with my two eyes the best way to stop a motorcycle is using both brakes .
The instructor at my school drove the bike to a speed of about 30 miles per hour and then stopped only using the rear brake (slammed it hard enough for the tire to skid and black smoke to appear ) ,then he used only the front brake to stop and finely he used both ,the result when using both he stopped in a shorter distance .
Now I have not rode the bikes of the past there fore I do comment on them .In today's world most of the new bikes have abs,traction control and of course linked brakes .So when a person is faced with a stopping situation in normal driving applying small amount of rear brake while doing the same with the front the bike stops smoothly with out the sudden transfer of weight forward .
In an emergency braking say a car or were I live a white tail deer were to jump out in front of you ,the brain takes 3/4 of second to asses ,3/4 of second to decide what to do and 1/2 second to implement the disicion,which equal 2 seconds ,I for one will be jumping hard on the rear brake while pulling the front brake and not worrying for second about locking up the tires only about cutting my speed to lesson the damage to my body. 
I am all so sure that the abs feature on cbf1000 will kick in which may be a good thing or not .
For those senior riders who feel to preach the benefits of only using the front brake "just because it works for you does not mean it is the correct method in todays world ".Every rider choses a way or style to ride and even though it works for them when posting on an open forum they should keep in mind that other riders may not ride like them and are seeking good solid info .
Here in canada we get all the bike magazines from usa ,uk and of course cdn when reading though them the writers are more concerned about how fast the bike is ,but they do all so discuss the abs feature and linked brakes ,but know were do they ever say use front brake only (to the best of my memory ),can they be trusted when they are media and protecting from a lawsuit ?.Again I say maybe .
I am sure this debate will create some good banter just like my fellow cdn's when discussing the correct way to stop a truck or car on snow and ice covered roads ,I for one love abs brakes they do the pumping for you .
Happy reading guys and gals
inches from a clean getaway =jack Nicholson

Offline JayJerome4

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #6 on: 14 August, 2010, 04:23:35 AM »
" For those senior riders who feel to preach the benefits of only using the front brake "

..............Perhaps the words 'senior' could be replaced with the word 'experienced' and 'preach' with 'give an opinion based on that experience' would be more appropriate...........

I have to say the front brake only method has transformed my riding to a much safer level than previously.... it certainly works for me.

Surely that's what counts??

JJ  :158:
'There are no such things as Good days or Bad days, just days of Grace that allow you to enjoy or endure '  :)

Offline daesimps

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #7 on: 14 August, 2010, 09:09:48 AM »
For me when slowing gradually it's front only and then back to finish off so there isn't a pogo effect from the front forks.

When stopping in an emergency I'm going with i2i's advice of front only and keeping the rear wheel spinning to help stability.  I've done some seriously hard braking (bonoeuf will confirm this!) and when adding the back brake there appeared to be no difference.  When braking really hard the rear end was so light that the rear locked (or would have if the ABS didn't kick in) and made next to no difference at all, just removed valuable tread from the tyre.

If it ain't broken - fix it 'til it is!

Offline neilaction

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #8 on: 14 August, 2010, 10:46:36 AM »

Front only 90% of the time.  :028:
The rear lacks feel anyway on this bike IMO.
(not unusually so, most road bikes lack feel IMO)

In an emergency its a reflex to go for both brakes.

On dirt roads I would use the rear a lot more.

I have never owned a bike with either ABS or Honda's combined braking system before so it would be interesting to take the biff down a few dirt roads to see how it goes. I know the BMW boys I ride with all turn the ABS off once hitting dirt.

I didn't think I would like the brakes on the biff.
Too old school.
But I do and they suite the biff perfectly.

Offline JohnnieBoy

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Re: Braking; front only or both?
« Reply #9 on: 14 August, 2010, 12:29:13 PM »

You state something like , '... front only........ brakes are linked anyway.....'


The rear is linked to the front, so when you plant your foot hard on the rear brake lever, some pressure goes to the front brakes.  IT DOES NOT WORK THE OTHER WAY ROUND!

If you only squeeze the front lever, NOTHING goes to the rear brake!

All been said above, but basically, most stopping power is from the front, but if you need to get speed off, some retardation to the rear can only help that process, (until you are tugging the front so hard that the rear wheel lifts, which can happen.

Rear only when manouvering slowly, feet up U turns etc.
Johnnie Boy