Home TRIALS CAR Fiddle brakes by Grant Campbell

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Back End



Front End

Front End 2


Fuel tank




Other cars

Fiddle Brakes are one of the most important bits of a trials car. They give the ability to lock up a wheel, which enables much better turning, better control descending hills, traction control by slowing or locking the spinning wheel, and if the car cocks a wheel and is in danger of rolling, the ability to lock the offending wheel, continue forward and bring the car back to earth!

On the first two cars I built, I used cable operated drums, simply because VW handbrakes are always pretty good, and the wheel cylinders available are always too small. Drums are high maintenance, low return, and are really not worth pursuing.

Inboard brakes allow the back end to be quite a lot narrower, give the opportunity to continue driving the car if an axle/CV breaks and lessen the unsprung weight - an important factor even in a low speed trials car.

The fiddle brake levers on my car achieve a ratio of about 18:1. I used this beaut oval section tube, about 18g. The master cylinders are 5/8". HINT: buy them from a trailer manufacturer. For some reason they are about half the price of the same thing at regular retailers. I've offset these so I could put them closer together.