emily’s bike stuff
About Archive RSS

Cockpit Revamp and New Brake Pads on Egret


My typing load at my day job has been increasing and some wrist pain has returned. Between that and trying those GS1 Evo grips with larger wings on the Brompton I’ve been thinking about refining my cockpit and grips on egret. I bought a variety of Ergon grips to try and the ones that don’t work out will go to the library at Scenic Routes.

Looking down from over the bike at the handlebars with inner bar ends, a phone mount, and GS1 Evo grips.

I seem to be between sizes for the Ergon grips. My hand circumference is right on the lower bound of their large size — 8.5". The small GS1 Evo grips (above) didn’t work well on my Brompton but the large ones did. The large ones feel a smidge big but that ends up helping with how little backsweep the Brompton stock bars have. I think putting my fingers around the large ones keeps them closer to their natural flexion at rest compared to the small ones. But then I tried the small size on egret and it worked out pretty well! Those bars are wider and have 25 degrees of backsweep. Similarly, the large GP1 Evo grips were too large and hurt my wrists pretty quickly. But! The small GP1 Evo grips are pretty good. I landed on giving those a try for a while:

Looking down from beside the bike at the handlebars with inner bar ends, a phone mount, and small GP1 Evo grips. There's a large paper bag and hat in the basket.

One thing I don’t like about the GP1 and GC1 grips are their outboard metal clamps1 — the metal feels harder when leaning your bars against something; they require the full length of the grip to be on the bar (hard with the Brompton’s narrow bars); the outer band is less comfortable than the grip material and my hands gravitate outboard; and imo the bare inboard side is kinda ugly.

I’m not sure I’m totally happy with the GP1 grips yet but it’s hard to tell when my wrists flare up. I’m trying to avoid the temptation to change the bike too much just because I’m having a possibly unrelated flare-up.

I also ended up getting rid of my mirrcycle mirror. It was fine. I liked it for seeing if Kat or my friends were close behind me and occasionally for cars. I think a larger mirror would be more useful. This one was small enough that fine adjustments made huge differences in sight. It was also getting hard to adjust — too tight and it was super stiff but any looser and it wouldn’t hold its position. I didn’t try sorting that out but probably should’ve. One week later and I do kind of miss it. But I also like how much cleaner the cockpit is without it.


I also wanted to get my brake levers further inboard so that my index fingers and wrists don’t have to change angles to have my finger on the furthest part of the lever blade. This worked out pretty well. I had to move the bell and e-bike controls around. I do wish these bars were less crowded.

The inner bar ends (Soma’s Cletus extensions) also needed to be angled up a bit for a neutral wrist angle. I tried swapping their unsightly grips with weed can’s old bar tape but I didn’t like the look. The old grips on there were kind of uhh, chode looking, and the thick padded tape didn’t improve things. I’m just going to try some old scraps of slim black tape.

I’m also gonna try pitching my bars up (rotating away from the rider) to decrease the effective backsweep with the GP1 grips to straighten out my wrists again.

Brake Pads and Bleed

Roughly 2901 km later and the front brake pads are worn! They are worn asymmetrically but are less than 0.5mm thick on the thinner side. I’ve seen customer pads worn down to the backing plate (or through it), which seems to correlate with caliper damage. So worth replacing conservatively imo.

A used brake pad lying on a wooden bench. It's worn at an angle and the front side is slim.

Shimano BR-MT410 calipers came stock on egret. These only support resin pads so in went a new set of B-type M05 pads. If these calipers ever break then I’ll replace them with something that supports metallic pads but for now I’m plenty happy. The stopping power is there (although I’ve been thinking about going up a rotor size) and they’re super quiet — even in the rain.

It was also time for a brake bleed. Normally you probably wouldn’t need a bleed after six months of use but I think these always needed a minor bleed from the factory. I also wanted to trim the hose length a smidge. I’ve been riding the same position for a while so I feel good about not needing the extra length. The front didn’t need that so much as the rear but I might as well while I’m here. When the rear pads need replacing I’m gonna trim the rear hose and bleed those too. The gradual cleaning up of the stock configuration continues.

Looking at the front of the left brake lever with the compression bolt cover off and a rag under the lever.

I love replacing disc brake consumables on e-bikes because it’s so easy to bed the brakes in! The bleed and new pads feel great. I also love these Shimano calipers that have a bleed screw instead of a bleed nipple that requires a 7mm box wrench between the nipple and hose. So much easier.

  1. And the naming. The naming is impossible to follow. ↩︎