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Disc brakes have become increasingly popular for all kinds of cycling due to their impressive power and ease of control. They are now standard equipment on a number of Co-Motion models. Disc brakes are nearly impervious to moisture and mud, and minor wheel problems have no effect on disc performance.
Disc brakes are an excellent choice for tandem use. Here at Co-Motion Cycles, we offer the Avid Mechanical BB-7 disc with Avid’s largest 203mm rotor. The large rotor combined with Avid’s compact and efficient caliper provides powerful braking that is easy to modulate under varying conditions. We’ve designed special disc dropouts specifically for the rigors of tandem use and currently specify front and rear disc brakes on several of our most popular tandem models.
Seasoned tandem riders know that during sustained braking, rim brakes can be a hazard as braking friction can cause overheating of the rim, potentially resulting in a blown-out tire. For decades, the crudely made Arai drum brake was the only viable solution to shoulder part of the braking duty on steep grades or long mountain descents, even though the Arai drum was never adequate for anything more than supplemental braking. Manufacturing for the Arai drum has ceased, but the good news is, our disc brakes perform better than the Arai drum/rim brake combo ever did. The Avid BB7 discs we specify provide even, consistent braking with excellent modulation for extended braking sessions with no effect on rim temperature: A safer, user-friendly choice. Because the Avid discs are so powerful, using them to supplement a set of rim brakes on a tandem is neither necessary nor advisable.
Dual (front & rear) disc brakes are an excellent option for our Americano and Pangea models. We can provide front and/or rear disc brakes on some other custom single models upon request. The Avid Mechanical BB7 is our disc brake of choice, with 160mm rotors which are best suited for the size and needs of single bikes. Opting for disc brakes can add versatility and practicality to your bike. Since discs are virtually unaffected by weather, they’ve become popular for all-weather commuters and cyclocross riders. Others use discs as a way to make wheel changes simple on a single multi-purpose bike. For example, you can set up a bike with heavy-duty 700x44cm tires for heavy-duty use on unimproved roads or trails, then swap the wheels with a lightweight set with 700x20mm tires. Such a change can be done much more quickly than a tire change; of course you do need a hefty investment in wheels to make this work!
For 2010, we completely redesigned our rear disc dropouts to re-orient the disc caliper between the chain-stay and the seat-stay (steel frames only). This new dropout design -manufactured right here on our Mazak CNC vertical mill- means it’s easier to fit rear racks and fenders, so you don’t have to shop for a disc-specific rack or adapter for your disc-equipped bike.