V Brakes Vs Cantilever – All Difference with Pros and Cons!

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Brakes refer to such instrumental device which mainly works for stopping or slowing running wheels.

A brake set absorbs energy, creates friction and reduces the pacing movement from several moving devices, vehicles and wheels. There is an entire connection between a motor and brakes over the years.

A common question arrives most of the time -the user is often concern about V Brakes Vs cantilever, which is good for them? I felt the same at the early stage of my bike riding. In this modern life, you can replace cantilever brakes with v brakes and it’s easy to do also.

These days, it is far easier to choose the right brakes. Do you want to get a full guideline on V Brake Vs cantilever brakes with the pros and cons of each brake? Let’s know all about it.

Head to Head: V Brakes VS Cantilever Brakes

Cantilever brakes Vs V-brakes both are different from each other according to their features, quality, and stability. The ultimate difference between V brakes and Cantilever brakes are point out here with pros and cons.

V-Brakes Cantilever Brakes
Pad Replacing
As V-Brakes need a pad to stop the bike, the brakes pad damage due to friction. The pad-replacing is very easy for the v-brakes. Cartridge-style is followed to replace the cantilever brakes and it is also an easy process to do.
The best V-brakes are very light-weighted. The weight is only 0.6 lbs. The best cantilever brakes are also very light-weighted. In this case, cantilever brakes are lighter than the v brakes. The weight is of cantilever brakes are only 0.3 lbs per set.
The V-brakes are compatible with mountain bikes. Here, cantilever brakes are compatible with road mechanical disc, old road calipers, and u-brakes and so on.
V-Brakes are less smooth than the cantilever brakes. Cantilever brakes work with the center-pull mechanism and that’s why it is smothering than the V-Brakes.
V-brakes look conventional. The cantilever brakes look similar to V-Brakes but an updated outlook.
As you know brakes performance depends on road condition and bike compatibility, a good set of V-Brakes performs better in a suitable bike. Cantilever brakes are also the same and suitable for the selected bike.
The best V-Brakes brake is cheaper than the Cantilever brake. The Cantilever brakes are a bit costly but the price affordable too.

Why You Need The Best Brake For Your Bike?

Well, it may come to your mind that why you will need the best brakes? First of all, as a biker, you will need to stop your bike’s motion at any time anywhere.

For this reason, you have to ensure that your bike is obeying your command. That’s mean on the time you press the brake of your bike it should instantly stop.

There are many other reasons too and I have sorted them out.

To avoid an unexpected accident

In the middle of riding, you will feel the importance of instant stopping your bike. Because of heavy traffic and unexpected traffic allocation may force you to stop your bike in the middle of riding.

So, you must choose the best brake set for your bike. You may have a mountain bike or a hybrid bike you will need the best bike parts which can work better for your bike.

You can have a comfortable riding

For a comfortable ride, you need to choose the best brake set for your bike, especially for the mountain bike. In the hilly track, you will feel the necessity of choosing the best brake set.

In the hilly track, you will face many obstacles and that’s why for a comfortable ride you need to choose the best brake set.

To take a smooth turn

Sometimes you will experience curvy road while riding then you should reduce the bike speed from the regular speed on a linear road.

So, before taking the turn you need to use your brake set otherwise you may fall into unexpected accidental issues.

There are many types of brake available for the bikes in the market. They are-

  • V-Brakes
  • Cantilever Brakes
  • Disc Brake
  • Caliper Brake

You will also find some comparison on different sites about- v brakes vs caliper, cantilever brakes vs caliper, cantilever brakes vs disc brakes, and so on.

V Brakes

V brakes are the most common and powerful “linear-pull” brakes for stopping the pace of your cycle, bike or car. It is a popular brake system.

Typically, we can see this type of restraint on the mountain and off-road bike. It performs best for dry braking. Similarly, it has improved its quality and works better for wet braking like muddy or rainy conditions.

V-Brakes are conventional brakes that can offer you a smooth braking system in your mountain bike. As a biker, you need to know that V-Brakes are effective in stopping the bike motion.

The lightweight of the brakes can offer you a smooth-riding. There is a problem with V-brakes and that is it needs to be changed after a certain period.

Pros Of V Brakes

  • V brakes are far more potent for increasing leverage
  • The changing process is simple
  • Pad replacing is more comfortable than usual cantilever brakes
  • V brakes are so much smoother
  • Better measurement quality
  • It is stronger than cantilever brakes
  • V brakes are inexpensive
  • Fast braking quality in any urgent situation
  • Lighter than disc brakes
  • Easy to use, maintain and replace
  • It doesn’t make any pull on the hub
  • V brakes elements are available in the market

Cons Of V Brakes

  • Need to install one more adapter for road bike style
  • Not suitable for braking in the muddy road
  • Performance can have reduced by mud and water
  • It may create wear on the rim

Cantilever Brakes

The cantilever brakes are a “central pull” mounted rim brake which directly connects to the fork by a cable. Though it was not popular in the past time, recently, it is becoming more develop and access to the bike rider.

Cantilever has brake shoes and cable connections from both sides. The leading theory of these brakes is squeezing the lever, pressing the wheel rim by V brakes pads. It performs best for the instant breaking in muddy road or place.

Each brake is crucial depending on riding location. If you are thinking about which is best? Then I say both are best in a different situation.

In words, V brakes can give you the best braking experience for dry braking. On the other hand, the cantilever is best for completely braking in the mud or wet road.

Pros Of Cantilever Brakes

  • Larger rim sizes for most of the roads close to (600 mm)
  • Have a long lever arm
  • Brakes stop the wheel movement by a simple pressure
  • It has a yoke angle which is useful for riding
  • Best braking power in a muddy and wet place
  • Most compatible with your device
  • No need to add one more adapter
  • Cantilever brakes are cheaper than other brakes
  • It is lighter in weight
  • The construction structure is easy
  • Easy to maintain and set up this brakes

Cons Of Cantilever Brakes

  • Need to reach the brake calipers all around the tier.
  • Less advantage of narrower tier
  • A little bit difficult to match with a cantilever brakes

Types of Cantilever Brakes

The cantilever is three types according to their angel. They are-

  • Wide profile
  • Medium profile
  • Low profile
  • Direct-pull

Wide Profile

Full profile cantilever brakes come with high instrumental advantages. It has an angel, more than 90 degrees.

Though it is not so much traditional, it works better only with lever top automatic positions. For example, we can say about mafic cantilevers.

Medium Profile

Medium profile cantilevers are using since late 1980. The cantilever angel is almost 90 degrees. It gives the best accomplishment within a wide range.

Low Profile:

The low profile cantilever angle is less than 90 degrees. If you can set it up properly, it can give the best performance.

Without a proper setting, a cantilever gives meager braking power.  Most importantly, the narrow profile doesn’t stick out the great distance from the frame.


In the case of the direct-pull brake, there is no additional skew cable such as v-brakes. You can easily adjust this direct-pull cantilever brake on your own.

How Can I Set Up V Brakes?

You can set up your V-Brake set by yourself easily and fit that brake to your bike too. If want to do it by yourself for the first time then you should follow the instruction below-

  1. First thing first, you need to remove the bolts.
  2. Then open the brake set from the box and remove the plastic.
  3. After that attach the V-shaped plastic stick and then attach the brakes.
  4. Put the brake wire into the head of the plastic head and it will help to generate stopping motion.
  5. There is a spring too for a loose connection and tighten the connection.

Set up and install a V brake is as much more straightforward as you don’t think.

There one consideration is the brake must have to be compatible with your bike because a wrong installation may give you a bad experience. As most of the V brakes come with brake pads of cartridge-style, so the replacement is more natural.

I hope that you can replace or insert new v-brakes by yourself. You should also know that you need to change your brakes after a certain period.


Are V brakes better than cantilever?

V brakes are born from traditional cantilever brakes. The evolved version of cantilever brakes is far more powerful and can increase leverage. Likewise, it is easier to set up and install. So, in some ways V brakes better than cantilever.

Can you use V brake levers with cantilever brakes?

No! You can’t use both of these together, because they are not compatible with each other. It is not possible V brakes adjustment with cantilever.

What is a cantilever brake?

– It’s a rim brake and each brake has the arm to hold the tier.

What are the best cantilever brakes?

– For this answer, you should follow the types of cantilever brake from this content. It also depends on your bike and the road where you are going to ride.

Are cantilever brakes good?

– It depends on the road condition and bike compatibility. You can’t judge the brake for only one condition. I will suggest you choose the brakes for your bike according to your bike’s compatibility and the track where you ride.

Tips Before Choosing A Brake

As you are going to choose the best bike brake for your bike you need to follow some additional tips. Make sure that you don’t look upon these parameters bellow before choosing the best brakes for your bike.

  • The compatibly
  • Perfect pace reducing or stopping power
  • Easier installation and management
  • Reasonable price
  • No possibilities of complete brakeless

Final Words

Cantilever and v brakes are interrelated, and each has its unique features. But linear-pull (V brakes) is most mind winner all around because of its high instrumental performance.

I want to say, choose a v brake because of its huge advantages. Linear pull brake will never complete brakeless. Besides, it has the advantage to repair and replace very fast within a short period.

Hopefully, your all confusion about V Brakes Vs cantilever is apparent now. Yet, if you have anything to know, let me know you next.

Last, of all, I will suggest you remain concern about safety. Brake fail can cause you serious injury to your body. So, check your brakes whether they are okay or not before riding. Stay safe and avoid unnecessary riding.