On sale Thursday November 11

The December issue of Cycling Active is in the shops now and packed full of news, reviews and advice on all aspects of cycling.

Cycling Active Cover Dec 2010The mud and cakes issue

We ride with a cake loving club
Road test: Seven of the best cakes
Head to head: 2 great (and affordable) MTBs

Why off-road winter rides are jolly good fun.

PLUS Bike Tests

Three fast and stylish road bikes: Tifosi CK7 Audax, Cannondale Synapse 105 and Whyte Sterling

First rides: Condor Heritage, Islabikes Cnoc, Kona Sutra, Charge Filter

Not Forgetting:

Tested: winter jackets, pricey helmets, bike bags
What to do when you can’t be arsed to ride?
How many miles to pedal off that xmas spare tyre?
How to clean your bike with December’s FAB SUBS GIFT from Muc-Off?
Great bike rides around the UK and beyond

Events not to miss in 2011

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  • Nick Rearden

    Hi Martin, it’s a fraught area because there are plenty of touring purists who argue and will no doubt continue to argue that there are numerous good reasons to use good cantilevers; among them weight, durability, ease of maintenance, brake feel. There’s probably more and they wouldn’t be wrong. On the other hand, there is what might be called a new category of touring bikes borne from the mountain bike category and of which the Kona Sutra is possibly the benchmark model where riding across all kinds of terrain including mud is considered quite normal. Under these circumstances, disc brakes are lovely but some people just like ’em because they’re cool and there’s nothing wrong with that unless it’s a disastrous choice. Properly set up discs shouldn’t ‘drag’ as such. I couldn’t see too many top mountain bike racers putting up with that.

  • Martin Fitzpatrick

    I read with interest- no make that ‘inappropriate and deeply disturbing excitement’- your First Ride article on the Kona Sutra. Someone has made the bike I thought they’d never make! A touring bike with disk brakes- I’d all but given up hope!

    Not only are they almost non-existent in the market, but the bloke in my LBS gave me a good explanation as to why that is, just a couple of weeks ago. He reckons it’s all down to mud versus drag. All disk brakes drag, he reckons, and you need to have a ‘pro’ to go up against that ‘con’. The ‘pro’, for off-road riders, is mud- or rather, the fact that rim brakes just don’t perform in mud. For on-road riders, that isn’t a big factor, which is why he reckoned we’d never see a road bike or tourer with disk brakes. Thoroughly disappointed, I was forced to accept this logic and pretty much gave up hope, only to have it re-kindled by your latest issue!

    Given all that, I was surprised that your article hardly mentions the brakes- except to say they’re ‘very effective’. Well, may I ask, dig they drag noticeably? Is my LBS man talking though his seat-post or is there something to this? I could just get crazy enough to go and slap down a grand on my nearest Kona dealer’s counter, but I need an answer to this burning question first! Any help would be much appreciated!