Brakes or no brakes?

I was wondering how many of you out there ride a 36" with brakes and how many of you do not. I have a n36 and do not have the brake. What is the benefit to having one? I only ride it on the road so I don’t know if Terry can answer! Ha!
Seriously, I would like to hear some of the pros and cons from you veterans of large wheel riding. Thanks.

it’s a benefit…but the real heart of the sport is about being brakeless…way more savage, skillful and interesting. Simplicity is what unicycling’s about…and brakeless gives you massive thighs!


brakes are lame…everybody’s going to disagree with me though…and they are all LAME!

Maybe use the search feature. I may be wrong, but there could be 20+ threads on brakes and about 20+ on what equipment people run on their 36.

pffftttt…the heart of the sport is the whole “one-wheel” thing.

I rode my 36er brakeless for years. Then last year, as I was decsending Mt Diablo, I swore that I would never do that 12 miles of downhill without brakes ever again.

Brakes are a godsend for those who ride lots of hills, and those who don’t have 18 year old knees. I’m not lame, but I might have ended up that way if I kept riding big hills with no brakes.

For riding in flat areas, brakes are useless.

You’ve convinced me! Today I’m having my mechanic remove the brakes from my car! Brakes are for lightweights! :roll_eyes:

And while we’re at it, what wussies are those hard core mtbers who ride their $5,000 mountain bikes WITH BRAKES on them! And Disk Brakes at that! WHat a bunch of pussies! hahahahahaha!

think what you will, i’m young, and at this point it’s all about being hard core…and brakes are not at all hard core. especially in muni. i have so much less respect for muni riders that use brakes.

for cokers…its just way fun to not use a brake. and more skillful. down hill rides are tougher of course.
but damn thats just how i do it, thats just my thoughts on the matter, you don’t have to think the same. but i am a good rider in many respects. you could take my advice and opinions, or disagree with them respectfully. its like every time i speak an opinion on this forum people get all bent outa shape.

I would but I don’t know how. Oh well!

But do you use them on your 36?

I think you’re like a lot of 18-year olds, not yet accepting the fact that you won’t live forever. In 2006 I didn’t use my brake enough on the Lake Tahoe ride (around the lake), and my knees were toast early on. I only made it halfway. Last year I used my brake on more downhills, and finished the whole 72 miles. Half the lake is hardcore. All the way around is even more hardcore.


Should I say it? No.

I use brakes to keep me from becoming lame.

That said, for those deciding if they want to add a brake, if you don’t feel like you need one you don’t. They’re just for riding down either long, or steep hills. If you don’t have those around, you don’t need a brake.

Look around your screen. It’s up there, near the top, the word “Search.” Give it a try.

I have brakes on both my muni & coker, but don’t use them hardly at all…they just look so cool! :sunglasses:

Thanks all. I got what I needed when you said they were just for hills. I do not have those where I live. It is flat here! I just wasn’t sure how they were used in day to day regular riding. If at all. and if so how they would help. It made sense when you talked about your knees getting wore out John. I feel that way without hills! Ha!

And then when someone asks ‘‘How do you stop that thing’’ you tell them you use the brake :stuck_out_tongue: .

No, I disagree, I agree with you. Why take the purest and simplest form of cycling, and add complexity? When I had a Coker, I rode on the road and off road, soemtimes on fairly steep hills, and was happy without a brake.

To be fair, I can imagine using a drag brake on very long descents. But not for normal riding.

You probably have more hills around you than you think. Here if there is any incline bicyclists call it a hill. :wink:

I thought about getting a Coker without a brake but changed my mind. I don’t plan on riding it only around here. The mountains and hills in Georgia are beckoning me to take them on.

Just because you have a brake doesn’t mean you have to use it on every little hill. I love the brake on my Coker. On a long downhill the brake can be a godsend. But I don’t use it on every hill. I can’t do what AspenMike does and go brakeless down a mountain pass. My legs would kill me after doing that. So I use a brake. I do take the Coker on big climbs up mountains and then back down.

I do go brakeless for the 24x3 muni. The way I muni doesn’t often require a brake. However there have been a few muni rides with a lot of downhill where the legs did object and say “you really should have used a brake”. It all depends on how and where you ride and what you prefer to do.

I had brakes and live in a really hilly area, I even ride fast down them, but I never used my brakes. I didn’t like them, at all, my knees were already bad from other sports before unicycling so I just learned how not to destroy them on down-hills or tear them apart on up-hills, my calves and thighs are looking great and my only problem is the occasional sticky ankle where it will lock up for a second or two, that’s never thrown me off though. I am brakeless and loving it!

It’s easier on your knees to go faster down hills with shorter cranks than it is to ease down it slowly with long cranks.

yup, but even on super scary hills where I go slow my knees don’t give, it’s mostly my ankle which is weird because I’ve never injured it before and it never hurts it just gives out randomly or locks up just as randomly.

Nah. I do prefer using my brute strength! I’ve got the quads of steel to prove it haha!:smiley:

due to not using brakes my legs have been compared to those of a black man… apparently black men have monster legs… hahaha