With the alarming rise in the number of accidents, safe riding is a major concern. Brakes play a major role in the safety system of a motorcycle. Motorcycle manufacturers, these days are launching bikes with front disc brakes as standard. But what exactly is the difference between disc brake variant and drum brake variant?
What are drum brake variant motorcycles?
What are disk brake variant motorcycles?
Disc Brakes vs. Drum Brakes
In disc brake variants, vents present on the disc improve the heat dissipation rate. Also, they are exposed to air whereas the drums are not. In a vehicle equipped with drum brakes, excessive friction causes a surge in temperature due to which the drum expands outward. Because of this, more effort has to be exerted to bring the vehicle to a stop, since heat dissipation rate is directly proportional to efficiency of the brake. Another disadvantage of drum brakes is that they are pretty useless when exposed to water.
In a nutshell, Disc brakes are easier to inspect, have fewer parts, have a superior design and better stopping power. The only advantage Drum brakes have is that they are cheaper to manufacture.
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Conclusion - The Current Scenario
Most manufacturers, today are providing front disc brakes as standard in their new products. But most of the bikes continue to employ drum brakes at the rear. Is this a wrong thing?
The answer is no. As the years have gone by, drum brake technology has also improved so much that some of them are more efficient than disc brakes of yesteryear. Also, during braking, due to mass transfer, most braking effort is needed at the front wheels. Most of the entry level bikes do not require a rear disc brake. Using a disc will also increase the costs on all these bikes. Thus, although a front disc brake is absolutely necessary, a rear disc brake is not so critical.
So in modern motorcycles since maximum braking effort is required at the front, the front wheel is equipped with disc brake and the rear wheel with drum variant. This solves the necessary purpose and also reduces the cost considerably.
Image Source : BrakesNAutomotive