Dutch Gazelle Cabby (Boxbike) brakes. can you improve them?
Just a quick post about Gazelle cabby brakes, i have done a lot of work on Gazelle cabbys, the brakes are fine for the Netherlands but if you have steep hills or tend to ride on the quick side then you might want to stop a bit quicker than the standard brakes allow.
So i was asked the question recently, is it worth upgrading…here is my reply.
Standard brakes on the cabby are designed for the relative flat, the rear brake, an IM30, is too basic for riding anywhere other than the flat, the IM80/1 is a much better brake for the rear and easy to fit. the front brake is ok, and i don’t really think it worth upgrading, it might be the small wheel thing but upgrades are less impressive on the front, worth doing if you have the spare £40 + available but the improvements won’t rock your world..
Shimano have a new roller brake out that is currently (Sept 2016) hard to get, the BR-C6000 Roller brake, retails for about £50 and is rated for 130kgs rather than the IM81 rating of 100Kgs..
If you live somewhere hilly, we have converted the front fork to disc brakes and so far so good, a transformation but pricey. (we don't offer this as a product)
Using low compression brake outer can also make improvements, but careful which brand you use…make sure it still uses a round steel case else it can pop the ferrels, don’t use anything looking like gear cable for the same reason), (Ashima for example, terrible stuff), Sram low compression outer has a good rep but difficult to get hold of..
also lets not use sledge hammer to crack a walnut, just make sure your existing roller brakes are greased, no grease (it can burn out the grease if you do a lot of hard braking) makes the braking snatchy or reduce your braking power, so regrease with special roller brake grease, (£15 a tube, last ages), on the flip side, if you have over greased (if its dripping out the bottom) then use brake cleaner and patience to slowly get the old grease out then start again..
the Gazelle Cabby is a great little bike that’s designed for the home market of the Netherlands, a few tweaks here make the Gazelle cabby the best cargo bike for a new family and the most easy to ride bike of the lot of them imo.
It’s a great price too…£1400ish at time of writing, that’s a lot of bike for a lot of jobs for not that much money in the grand scheme of things.
(these modifications and observations are also valid for other cargo bikes with roller brakes, Really Useful Bikes (RUB) offer these upgrades on all cargo bikes at reduced prices on new bicycle bought from RUB)