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Why do road bikes use cantilever brakes instead of V-brakes?(7 posts)

Why do road bikes use cantilever brakes instead of V-brakes?js5280
Jan 25, 2002 10:09 AM
Just something that has perplexed me. V-brakes are lighter, cheaper, and a much simpler design. I know that they are sometimes used on touring bikes so I assume they must be more powerful in order to stop a loaded bike. So why haven't cantilevers been replaced like they have in the MTB world?
They don'tTJeanloz
Jan 25, 2002 10:15 AM
Road bikes use caliper brakes. Old school mountain bikes use cantilever brakes. V-brakes are moderately heavier than caliper brakes (XTR vs. Dura-Ace for comparison). And the bosses on the frame make the frame a little bit heavier.

Also, V-brakes don't work really well with road bike levers (they do work, but not really well). The big question though, is when will disc brakes eliminate calipers? It will happen, it's just a matter of time and weight.
thought he meant cantis vs. Vs on cross bikes nmgtx
Jan 25, 2002 10:21 AM
re: Why do road bikes use cantilever brakes instead of V-brakes?gtx
Jan 25, 2002 10:19 AM
V-brakes don't work as well with road levers. Also, they aren't lighter (the opposite is true), and they aren't cheaper (well, maybe they are now because cantis are more rare and have become a more upscale item). V-brakes were originally developed for suspension bikes because they solved the cable routing problems. They are also marginally more powerful (hard to compare the two directly, because so much depends on pads and proper setup). Also, your average home mechanic (and plenty of shop mechanics) had a hell of a time properly setting up cantis, whereas the V-brakes are more of a no-brainer. But properly set up cantis are sweet. They also shed mud better. In the most recent Olympics, the gold medalist in the mtb race had cantis on his mountain bike!
D'oh! I meant caliper brakes, sorry! (nm)js5280
Jan 25, 2002 10:55 AM
they canpmf1
Jan 25, 2002 11:53 AM
I had my cross bike set up with v-brakes. You need to use a travel agent. They didn't stop nearly as well as a dual pivot road brake.
re: Why do road bikes use cantilever brakes instead of V-brakes?MIan
Jan 25, 2002 11:41 AM
Not enough cable pull in road levers for Vs. Plus, power in road brakes in not a problem. Tires loose traction long before road calipers run out of power.