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Top Mount Brake Lever Questions...Please Help!(7 posts)

Top Mount Brake Lever Questions...Please Help!ss-nyc
Jan 29, 2004 5:33 AM
I have a fixed/track bike (no cross bike yet) and thought this board would have the best knowledge of top mount brake levers.

I am changing from flat bars to drop bars on my fixed bike and I can only assume I will spend most of my time on "the tops" of my drop bars in a "less" agressive position. I ride a great deal in NYC traffic which is why I want the advantage of having top mount brake levers in addition to standard drop bar brake levers. So...

Which are good inexpensive levers? (I cannot spend money on Paul levers)

Can they be mounted (or removed later) without having to unwrap the bars?

How do they actually work? (I have never actually seen any installed)

What size do I need? (I have seen 24mm and 26mm)

Thanks in advance!
Tektro are inexpensivepitt83
Jan 29, 2004 5:52 AM
They have a hinged mount so you can remove them when you want

The cable goes through the lever arm. The housing is cut and you're pulling the cable toward the bar from within that break in the housing. Tough to descirbe; easy once you see it in action. Your regular brake lever will still work. You'll need both since the "STI" lever will acually be pulling cable.

I think the size would depend on your bar diameter.
Tektro are inexpensiveatpjunkie
Jan 29, 2004 8:42 AM
a good choice for what you are looking for. A bunch of fixies have been using them and I've even seen a few that somehow 'tie off' the lever without using the main brake lever. check the fixie page. I also saw on some Bianchi TT bikes from the Tour had a top mount mounted backwards on the aero extension so a rider could slide hand backwards on the aero bar and brake.
The tektros are cheap, havea hinge and are available in both sizes. probably your best choice.
Tektro are inexpensivemr_e
Jan 29, 2004 9:29 AM
I had one on my fixie without a standard lever (mine was a Specialized cast model, quite stiff). I just ran a mtb cable through so the fixing ball hung up on the hole in the lever. It still pushes the housing, but that worked fine for a road caliper, and seems to work aok on a canti (cross fixie).
no need to unwrap to install, but to remove...laffeaux
Jan 29, 2004 11:04 AM
You can easily install the levers without unwrapping the bars. However to install them you must cut the cable housing as it exits the bar tape. If you remove the levers, you'll probably want to replace the housing (unless you have some sort of coupler to rejoin the housing), which would require unwrapping the tape.
Tektros are the only ones I've used...The Walrus
Jan 29, 2004 12:34 PM
...the first time I added a set (to see how well they'd work and if I'd like them), I bought Tektros because they were far and away the least expensive; they worked so well, I never bothered to try any others when I was upgrading other bikes.

FYI: the last time I looked, Supergo had them back in stock, for $19.95 a set. I hate to recommend Supergo, but you won't find a better price on these.
Tektros are solid for the price. nmsnwbdrhoon
Feb 1, 2004 5:51 AM