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Does the 950 have enough front brake?

36 posts from 24 voices
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  1. arecipo

    I was riding along the other day and some cager a******e ran a red light and I had 2 choices, accelerate or brake and I chose the latter. Even with down shifting I had a hard time getting her to slow down so I went ahead and applied the rear break to give it that extra stopping ability. I typically ride only using the rear break in emergencies. At any rate, it seemed that the front break was not enough. Has anyone else experience this? I understand that keeping the cost of the bike affordable was key in the design of the bike, but wouldn’t it be better to have 2 front brake rotors?

    Just curious,

  2. yhoower

    I haven't had that experience but I always try to use both the front and rear brake at all times especially in emergency stopping situations.

  3. peertuge

    Ive locked up both wheels at highway speed so im guessing the single front disc is enough.

  4. dartpoj5

    I use front and rear brakes all the time as well. Dual front brakes wouldn't hurt (Given the 1100 was dual fronts), but I believe the single front brake is plenty. Of course, I am coming from a 750 which had single front and a drum rear. The rear disc gives a lot more usable stopping power than a drum IMHO.

  5. VTvinChic

    Dual fronts wouldn't hurt the 950, but I agree it's really on the border. I changed to a braided brake hose when I installed my risers on my 950 and that made a difference - a "tighter" feel - under heavy braking.

  6. kdbrich72

    You should use both brakes for stability. But having said that, I've not noticed an issue with the braking power. I do know that several people on the 650 board I posted on swore by stainless steel brake lines...said they got better braking power out of them.

  7. dhegopra

    I haven't had any problems with the front brake not having enough power, but I've only had the bike for about 700 miles.

    I would recommend taking look at some pro literature for proper braking techniques. The rear break is not an emergency brake and it should be used, especially on emergency stops. In fact, there are even times when only the rear brake should be used.

    This is the book my father got me when I bought my 950.

  8. ylvrikhd

    I also added a stainless brake line when I added risers which made the feel more firm but like another poster stated you can slide the front wheel with the single disc. I use the rear brake quite a bit when slowing down but always the front and rear when I need moderate to severe braking. You better keep your mouth closed if you lock up the front and rear brakes or your false teeth are gonna get ejected.

  9. zmogejyoe

    I agree with others. It has not been a problem for me. The front brake, especially on good pavement, has good stopping power. Glad you safely avoided the red light runner.

  10. OgieRiter

    For this type of bike I think the brakes are fine and as others have mentioned the braided lines will firm up the brakes.

  11. lem23

    I locked up the front at about 50mph for a second, scared the crap out of me (Was my first ride longer then a few mins on bike and I had learned on smaller bikes with crappy brakes), but I just eased it off a bit and iTSdarted rolling again... If it had anymore braking power i'd be afraid of locking it up on accident.

  12. arecipo

    Maybe there is something wrong with mine then. The front breaks don't seem to grab like the rears do. I'll pull of the pads and look for glazing and clean the rotor and see what that does. Thanks for the heads up on the break lines too. I had not thought about hydraulic expansion of the rubber lines.

  13. dman

    Not saying there is nothing wrong with your front brakes but the perceived and actual difference in braking power is huge when applying both brakes. If you start out by only applying the front brakes then apply the back brakes you will definitely notice gained braking ability. This doesn't mean that the front brakes has issues. This is the fact that using both brakes will result in the most efficient braking and stopping power.

  14. bkman

    I don't know if it will help, but here is what I did on my wife's Honda 750:

    wider levers (so more pressure may be applied to the master cylinder)

    stainless braided hydraulic line (more pressure reaches the caliper)

    EBC Double-H sintered metallic brake pads (a new chemistry that supposedly has much better initial bite and less fade)

    EBC rotor (probably not necessary, but the OEM one was rusting a little).

    After about 300 miles of break-in, the collective effect was staggering. That bike stops 10 times better now.

    You may not have to throw the parts catalog at it like I did, but I'd suggest you at least try those HH metallic pads from EBC. I think that and the stainless braided line made the biggest difference for us.

    I remember reading the first reviews of the 950, and the only real criticism those editors had was the brakes being a little under-sized for the weight. Keep in mind that the 950 only weighs a few pounds less than the 1100 did. That said, it is advisable to use both brakes all the time for the most effective stopping power.

  15. VTvinChic

    In a panic, anyone can lock up the front on the 950. You just grab a handful of lever, hard and fast. However it is the rate and amount of pressure (somebody already mentioned the "perceived braking") that makes the difference. It seems a bike this size should brake a little more responsively with more minimal effort under normal riding conditions.

  16. dke2

    Maybe your front brakes are just worn? If you're using only the front brakes all the time, then I'm not surprised your rear brakes seem tighter and more responsive. They've had less miles on them. It's possible that it's just a case of worn pads, right? Just a thought.

    Start using your rear brakes with the front. That's how they're engineered to work.

  17. Shebhertezz

    I was taught in my safety course to always use both brakes - it's muscle memory for when I need to react and stop fast. IMHO I don't think it's the bike - I have found out the hard way that the front brake used on it's own works fast and hard quite well!

  18. BigerDawe

    Please be careful!
    There are times when it's not a good idea to grab a big 'ol handful of front brakes.
    I wanted to start a thread where people could convey their sometimes humorous stories about front brake usage (I have two) for whatever educational value they may have.
    I decided against it because:
    1) it would confuse someone:
    2) I don't want to usurp any info imparted in a MSF:
    3) I don't claim to be an expert.

    oh well.......

  19. Troober

    I'm just trying to figure out why you would ignore 35 to 40% of your braking ability? That part does not make sense to me. Man get on that rear brake!!! There is no wonder your front brakes dont seem adequate if they are the only ones you are using. I bet that carrying all that load they are probably worn and glazed. Not to mention that in an emergency situation it is not uncommon for things to play out in slow motion, and make you wonder if your EVER Going to stop. Been there and done that.... just be carefull and start practicing with those rear brakes bro....

  20. Shebhertezz

    OOPS! I posted the wrong article. I use both brakes! I'll delete that article...


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