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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:22 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2013 7:04 pm
Posts: 659
Quick question,

In every ones general opinion should your left hand do the rear brake or the front ?

At the moment I've done mine so that your left hand does the rear brake as per my moden mountain bike and as per new bikes I've seen, but looking at pictures of other peoples retro bike it seems some have it the other way around.

Whats the right way for a 1989 bike or does it come down to personal choice ?


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:29 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Aug 03, 2008 12:31 am
Posts: 585
Location: London
I have left front, right rear. Only because it gives a nicer cable routing crossing over my bars, with non-aero levers and Campagnolo brakes that is.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:35 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:07 pm
Posts: 1324
Location: Cotswolds
When building bikes in the 1950 -60's I always put the front brake on the left, for UK roads, unless the opposite was specified.
The reason for back brake on the left goes back to rod brake roadsters with a high centre of gravity and lumpy rims. It was possible to go over the front with a hard front brake application. However, as the weight transfer to the front can mean the back wheel skids, on sporty bikes you could brake effectively with the front brake while signalling with the right hand.
Modern bikes are mostly made for the opposite side of the road, so where do they put the front brake on the continent?
Keith


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:43 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2012 4:16 pm
Posts: 1568
Location: NOTTINGHAM
Someone once said that the reason there's a difference between continental set up - left = front & UK set up -left = rear was down to being able to use hand signals for turning and being able to brake effectively? Certain element of sense in that.

I've tried the continental set up & it feels alien to me so mine are UK set up but I agree with fiks in that the continental set-up gives better cable routing.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:54 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2013 7:04 pm
Posts: 659
So for uk roads, its rear on the left and front on right ?


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:04 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2012 2:08 pm
Posts: 2186
Location: Shrewsbury
Maca wrote:
So for uk roads, its rear on the left and front on right ?


My father started a pretty extensive collection of British built bikes back in the 60s through to the late 80s, all of them were right front, left rear. A few never having being ridden from new including Dawes and Carlton.

As I understand it, European bikes are the opposite, although imported bikes like Peugeot are routed right front, left rear for the British market.


Last edited by Robbied196 on Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:05 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2012 4:16 pm
Posts: 1568
Location: NOTTINGHAM
that's the convention although a lot is personal preference.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:38 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2013 7:04 pm
Posts: 659
Cheers guys, think I'll keep it as is then. UK Spec with my rear brake on the left lever.

That way I wont go over the bars after having ridden my mountain bike.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 2:01 pm 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Fri Aug 08, 2008 2:36 pm
Posts: 16750
Location: Yorkshire, England
Right front, left rear for me.
BUT and a big BUT, it's whatever you feel safe with, they work either way.
It's also why modern brakes are 'flip-flop' so they can unbolt the lever etc and swap them over (at least in flat bar world) since they are not cables you can switch easily like 'retro' bikes.

If you do have them the other way around in the UK, remember to tell anyone that borrows it ;)

Edit, I should say if a new bike is purchased, then the rules are right-front left-rear as per the Pedal Bicycle regulations.
I had some interesting reads on this I'll see if I can find the links.


Last edited by FluffyChicken on Sun Jul 28, 2013 2:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 2:08 pm 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:03 pm
Posts: 1791
Location: In the village
Left=front
Right=rear

But I ride on the right and I like to change gear with my right hand and I use the front brake more than the rear. So I can change and brake at the same time.


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