New MTB'er – Should I buy a bike with v-brakes ?

Home Forum Bike Forum New MTB'er – Should I buy a bike with v-brakes ?

Viewing 36 posts - 1 through 36 (of 36 total)
  • New MTB'er – Should I buy a bike with v-brakes ?
  • Thrustyjust
    Member

    For all year riding spend a bit more and forget the brake pads lasting a ride, rims lasting 6 months.

    reggiegasket
    Member

    Only a plonker will advise you to go with Vs

    cyclistm
    Member

    yeah, spend a bit more and go discs. It will provide better pay back as you wont need to change the pads after every ride.

    Premier Icon cp
    Subscriber

    Of hazard a bet that the vees on the cheaper bike will be better than some potential cheap and nasty cable discs.

    All depends on what they actually are really.

    Premier Icon tthew
    Subscriber

    If the V brake bike doesn’t have disk compatible hubs and mounts on the frame then DEFINITELY the disk bike. (makes any future upgrades really expensive)

    kja78
    Member

    When I bought my first ‘proper’ mountain bike a few years ago, I thought I’d save a few quid and get one with v brakes. However within a few months I wanted discs. This meant new wheels as well as brakes. Even if you do get one with cheapy mechanical discs, it will be much cheaper just to get hydraulic brakes later, rather than needing wheels as well. V brakes just don’t cut it when the going gets wet, muddy and steep.

    Premier Icon tuskaloosa
    Subscriber
    rickt
    Member

    It has to be discs, purely for the wheels and mounts incase of future upgrades.

    Whats making you wanting a Commencal El Camino over other bikes? Cost or brand ?

    waveydave
    Member

    V’s do not work at all in the snow. They are also very sketchy in poor conditions. Amongst my mates i was the first to go disc, i was the only one riding safely all winter, It wasnt long before all my mates had better discs than me.

    DISCS

    thebees
    Member

    Hi all,
    I’m on the verge of buying a new mountain bike and have pretty much decided on a Commencal El Camino with 29″ wheels. The 2013 models are being sold off cheap, but I don’t know wether to buy the bottom of the range one with v-brakes at £325, or to spend around a hundred quid more to get a disc brake version instead ? I’ve had a bike with v-brakes before and found them to have great stopping power, but a search round the net has lead me to believe that they’re not much cop when wet. This would seem to be a major disadvantage for trail riding through the winter. Any help welcomed, Ta.

    gears_suck
    Member

    Let me answer your question with a question. Would you buy a new car with drum brakes? No! Better things have been invented just for you. Take advantage.

    Premier Icon Onzadog
    Subscriber

    I’m holding off buying a new road bike until I can get one with hyrdaulic discs. Wouldn’t dream of buying a mountain bike without them.

    I can say with 100% certainty that the V’s on my HT have more stopping power than a rubbish disc set-up!

    But that may not mean a lot in this case

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Subscriber

    Second hand, with discs.
    Put a ‘wanted’ on here – much better value.
    Be fussy about a good one, that is well looked after.

    Premier Icon tmb467
    Subscriber

    Discs

    Although I’m riding an hardtail with magura hydraulic rim brakes cos there’s no disc mount on the frame

    Although if there were mounts, I’d use discs

    EDIT – only on the rear…got a disc up front

    Premier Icon Coyote
    Subscriber

    Discs if you can. However my SS has V-brakes, Avid Single Digit, and they will stop me whenever I need it.

    Oh, and…

    rims lasting 6 months

    Really? Really, really?

    as you wont need to change the pads after every ride

    M’OK…

    Buy what you can afford to get you riding. It’s all good. As others have said, try and make sure that the hubs are disc compatible for the future. They are better but they are not the be all and end all.

    Premier Icon jambalaya
    Subscriber

    When I first wanted to get into mtb-ing I bought a cheap bike with v brakes. Within 3 months it was clear that was a mistake as on wet muddy winter rides on reasonably steep descents I had limited stopping power, occasionally zero as all the brakes did was scrape the mud off the rims !

    If you’re riding on fairly flat ground the v’s will be adequate. That bike above is still going strong, it’s been a loner to mates wanting an occasional ride and is now a commuter for my son in law. No one has died riding it although I did scare myself a few times.

    Adding £100 to a £325 budget is a big difference 30%. If you look around on classifieds here you will find a good bike for £400, much better value than buying new. If its your first bike I’d be tempted to say ignore 26 vs 29 and jut buy something decent, plenty of advice on here if your unsure of a particular bike for sale.

    6079smithw
    Member

    No mountain bikers survived the 90s on their cantis and V brakes.
    Anyone into mountain biking now got started after the turn of the century 🙄

    TBF the specs if they’re what I saw are Commencal own brand V’s compared to Tektro hydraulic discs. I would go with the disc model in that case.

    Good V brakes are better than bad disc brakes, as my ‘mate’ will testify after having a brief go on one (his disc brakes sucked)

    bigrich
    Member

    it gets wet, it gets muddy, the efficiency of V’s drops dramatically.

    orangeboy
    Member

    I still use a hardtail with v brakes a lot and its fine but only in the summer.
    If its going to be your only bike then get a disc one.

    But I’d suggest having a look at used stuff any new bike around 4-500 and even up to 1000 can be a little poor in places

    thebees
    Member

    OK, thanks for all the advice.
    So I’m now thinking that I need to invest in a bike with discs. However I do have an old Kona Lava Dome (with v-brakes) at the back of the garage which, with some work, could be a good starting point to get into off-road riding. Then in a few months I could trade up to a decent disc braked bike.
    Thanks again.

    bigrich
    Member

    old Kona Lava Dome

    is it steel? that’s a rad bike to ride.

    maxtorque
    Member

    For me, it is a descsion based on what i’m going to use the bike for.

    For just general pootling around, not on steep or gnarly stuff, cheap rim brakes will be better than cheap (cable operated) disc brakes (because the braking surface is at a larger radius, the clamp force can be a lot less, and as such, things like high friction in the cables/calipers/levers etc has less effect).

    BUT,

    If you think at any point you might want to do some ‘proper’ mountain biking, i.e muddy, steep, rocky etc, where you need repeatable braking and control, then at the very least a bike with disc/caliper mounts would be a good idea as other have mentioned.

    Even for a cheap (and hence heavy frame) some sensible second hand sourced upgrades to a better fork and hydraulic discs can release a lot of intrinsic capability for little extra cost!

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
    Subscriber

    You’d be better off buying second-hand and getting disc-ready. Can always be upgraded to better brakes at a later date.

    sunnrider
    Member

    I´d recommend going for a 2nd hand one with disc brakes.
    A quick look through Ebay and you should find something like a Rockhopper Comp with decent spec and under your spend.

    The cheaper bikes on CRC don´t seem to be much good.

    An example: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/specialized-rockhopper-/251344487121?pt=UK_Bikes_GL&hash=item3a854c82d1

    shermer75
    Member

    Kona Lava Dome? Sweeeeeeeeeeet 😀

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
    Subscriber

    There’s a Soul in Classifieds within your budget.

    yossarian
    Member

    Don’t get a bike with v brakes.

    People didn’t really ride off road until disc brakes were invented.

    Premier Icon Coyote
    Subscriber
    bigrich
    Member

    People didn’t really ride off road until disc brakes were invented

    people very, very quickly adopted discs as they were so much better in the wet and the mud.

    crankboy
    Member

    You have a kona lava dome in the garage. You should be spending a few quid doing that up.

    I have an old p7 with v s it was and is great fun and very capable off road the rims lasted for years of muddy ridding too. But disks are a whole league better.

    gears_suck
    Member

    rims lasted for years of muddy ridding too. But disks are a whole league better.

    All I can say about that is either you never applied them or it wasn’t ridden enough.

    CaptJon
    Member

    bigrich – Member
    people very, very quickly adopted discs as they were so much better in the wet and the mud.

    I remember being jealous of people with discs, but i hate to wait years until i could afford them.

    crankboy
    Member

    I think they were good quality fir rims and I kept the blocks free of grit . The rear did go catastrophicly when it finally wore through. The front is now badly grooved . The front highlights the other issues with v brakes , v’s become useless or very annoying if the wheel goes out of true or develops flat spots as the blocks catch on the tyres or the rims.

    v’s are ok if you have no choice ie second hand etc. Fine if the bikes used for commuting. Get the disk version if you can though even if the brakes are rubbish cable jobs ( which tbh are usually much better with a pair of aftermarket superstar, A2Z, Aztec etc pads) These will be ok and will allow easy an easy upgrade to proper disk brakes at some stage. I’d say worth it really as otherwise you’d need a new wheel set if you decide to upgrade, providing the frame has disk mounts too. Deore brakes are imo are excellent value. Also saves on pads and no rim wear. In some places mud and wet equals grinding paste. V’s are however ok. Also depends where it’s going to ridden really.

    Premier Icon tomaso
    Subscriber

    If you look at The last but one issue of StW they review an Islabke with Vs and thought it not bad. If its all you can afford it will get you out on the trails. Most disc brakes are better than Vs but some are barely any better.

    I did the Ported du Soliel on a disc front and v rear braked bike in 2000 and survived. I also survived the entire MTB era before V brakes. But ask me to forego disc brakes now and I’d tell you to go take a leap :mrgreen:

Viewing 36 posts - 1 through 36 (of 36 total)

The topic ‘New MTB'er – Should I buy a bike with v-brakes ?’ is closed to new replies.