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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Road Bikes With Disc Brakes Coming To A Future Near You?

I just came across this little article from Cycling News about the recent UCI ruling on disc brakes for cyclocross racing and its effect on the future of road bike braking systems.


The rear disc mount puts more stress on the frame, requiring an strut between the stays to bolster the area.  Even so, just three rear rotor bolts are sufficient in this application.

The rear disc mount puts more stress on the frame, requiring an strut between the stays to bolster the area.

The UCI's recent lifting of the ban on disc brakes in cyclo-cross has been widely heralded as a positive step forward for the sport, finally allowing a critical piece of equipment to advance past what is essentially decades-old technology. The move from rim to disc brakes has already changed the landscape for mountain biking and 'cross riders – especially racers – stand to make similar gains:

• Braking performance – both in terms of power and modulation – will improve dramatically, especially in adverse conditions where even the best rim brakes can become virtually inoperable
• Mud clearance: by moving the brake hardware away from the rim, bikes are less apt to clog up with debris
• Overall weights could potentially decrease: even when factoring in a disc rotor, 'cross bikes' lower braking demands should make for smaller and lighter hardware than on mountain bikes plus even lighter rims than what is currently available
• Fewer pits during muddy races
• The ability to continue on if a rim becomes slightly out of true

Taiwan Bike Festival Is A Wash

The First International Bike Festival is a wash after a week of rain and bad weather. The outer bands of Typhoon Magi have dumped buckets of rain on the participants and may have greatly impacted the number of attendees.

You can not predict nature, but you CAN look back on previous seasonal weather patterns.

Last year at about this same time I was preparing to ride from Hualien to Taichung over the Central Cross Island Highway. A typhoon came within hours of hitting Taiwan and then reversed course and saved the trip.

In late October, Taiwan often receives one last typhoon to end the storm season before settling down into a mild winter. Planners should have understood this and planned around the typically unstable weather.

Why choose October and run the risk?

Another GIO scheme goes horribly wrong. *sigh!*