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extending the excrutiating brake thread
4 opinion items:
1. All posts to the effect of 'locked tires are not the most effective
stopping method' are naturally, correct, and the converse is also true.
Threshold braking is the most effective stopping method and it does not
involve locking the brakes. Tire-locking fans hold on to your flame pen
and bear with me for a sec.
2. Most (non-racing) driving schools teach students to lock the brakes
for maximal stopping power (or did before the omnipresence of ABS)
BECAUSE while threshold braking may be theoretically advantageous, in
real world emergency braking situations, you are vastly more likely to
get a shorter stopping distance from locking 'em up than from trying to
perform the unfamiliar maneuver of threshold braking under duress.
Interestingly, they apparently had to work to overcome the same mental
problem that ABS has - drivers letting pressure off and easing up on
braking because of the noise.
3. Virtually any production brake is capable of locking the tires, or at
least once before heating up. Bigger and better brakes are for: A.
enduring high stress/heat (marginally valuable on the street really), B.
providing better control at the limit (truly important). This isn't
'feel' just for the pleasure of it, as some seem to imply, it's the
ability to actually control that threshold point before locking. This
is also true of the bike cable example, BTW.
4. While ABS may not be as perfect threshold braking as may be able to
perform, it is probably closer than 99% of drivers would be able to
perform in real world scenarios, with the notable exception of
soft-surface braking (gravel/dirt/snow) where a little skid to dig the
tire down to a layer of higher traction can be important.