Carbon Forks and Hydraulic Disk Brakes

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bigchiefally
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Carbon Forks and Hydraulic Disk Brakes

Postby bigchiefally » Mon Apr 29, 2013 08:12 am

Sooooo, buying a bike on the cycle to work scheme and had settled on a Boardman Comp. However due to an annoying combination of my works insistence that I buy the vouchers in multiples of £100, the bike and accessories that I want coming in slap bang in the middle of a multiple of £100 so I have to fill it up with stuff I dont really want, and the tax savings in the c2w scheme it works out only about £118 more to buy the next model up, the Team.

Anyway, that is just a bit of back story, the difference as I can see in the bikes is that the Team, the more expensive one, - is about 10% lighter, which sounds great till I get on the bike, at which point the kilo saves me and the bike about 1%, so maybe not such a big deal.
- has carbon forks (as opposed to metal ones)
- has hydraulic disk brakes (as opposed to mech disk ones)
- doesnt have such a nice paint job!

I will be commuting about 4 miles each way, with a proper nasty climb for about 1/2 of it. I also plan on getting out for a exercise ride for about an hour at the weekend and hopefully one evening weeknight whilst the light is good.

So - what are peoples opinions on the hydraulic brakes - are they genuinely a plus point?

- What about carbon forks - do you genuinely notice the difference?

Many Many Thanks

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tim wand
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Re: Carbon Forks and Hydraulic Disk Brakes

Postby tim wand » Mon Apr 29, 2013 09:16 am

I take it the majority of your commute will be on Tarmac/Metalled roads?

A carbon fork will produce less feedback/buzz from the road surface, you wouldnt believe how bad UK road surfaces are and how much buzz can be felt coming back through the fork.

A 4 mile commute shouldnt really cause you any fatigue or problems from this though.

What is you mechanical knowledge like? Hydraulic brakes require regular maintenance (i.e bleeding) to remove air locks and maintain fluid levels. This can be a faff if you dont have the correct bleed kit or mechanical knowledge.

I have a mate who got a Boardman from Halfords and took it back to have the rear brake bleed after only a Month and lets just say he d have been better off if a Monkey had done the job.

Mechanical Discs (especially Avid BB5'S OR BB7'S) are more than adequate for a fast road hybrid and easy to maintain and set up.

In summary I would say a Carbon fork is desireable in the long term. Hydraulic discs are a bit OTT for what you are doing and a faff to maintain unless you know what your doing or have a decent LBS who will do it for you.

I know this doesnt help, IME if you are trying to decided between two bikes, you usually end up lusting after or regretting not buying the more expensive one.

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nicklouse
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Re: Carbon Forks and Hydraulic Disk Brakes

Postby nicklouse » Mon Apr 29, 2013 09:20 am

tim wand wrote:Hydraulic brakes require regular maintenance (i.e bleeding) to remove air locks and maintain fluid levels.

sorry wrong.

fit and forget maybe bleed once in 3 to 5 years.

if they are getting air locks then something has failed.

maintain levels ! got a leak? nope that is called over filling and causes issues when your pads wear out and you want to fit new ones.
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pkripper
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Re: Carbon Forks and Hydraulic Disk Brakes

Postby pkripper » Mon Apr 29, 2013 09:47 am

nicklouse wrote:
tim wand wrote:Hydraulic brakes require regular maintenance (i.e bleeding) to remove air locks and maintain fluid levels.

sorry wrong.

fit and forget maybe bleed once in 3 to 5 years.

if they are getting air locks then something has failed.

maintain levels ! got a leak? nope that is called over filling and causes issues when your pads wear out and you want to fit new ones.


Agreed - hydraulic brakes if fitted correctly only really suffer a problem if they're damaged (usually through some sort of impact or transit) or incorrectly installed / filled. I've a couple of pairs that haven't ever been bled (one is 7 years old, one is 5) - they work perfectly still.

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tim wand
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Re: Carbon Forks and Hydraulic Disk Brakes

Postby tim wand » Mon Apr 29, 2013 10:36 am

I ve got Avid Juicy 5 s on an old Orange Five and newer Avid 3s on a Whyte 19. Because I live in Flatlands central I transport the bike a lot in the car. and even though I use pad wedges when I take the wheels in and out, I still find I have to bleed the brakes about once a month to get optimum performance.

I agree, I dont store or transport the bikes correctly, hence the maintenance issues.

I just feel as the OP is looking for a fast commuter hybrid type bike, then He doesnt really need hydraulic discs, I know new modern closed systems if treated correctly are not high maintenance. but still represent a challenge to those with little or limited mechanical knowledge.


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