The first thing we noticed when fitting the Mono Minis was that the split-lever clamp now has rounded edges to stop it scoring carbon bars. On the trail it is the reduced lever travel that makes the Mono Mini feel different to the other brakes on test. In fact it feels like the system has been overfilled with fluid. However, we know that it’s not the case as this is the second set on Mono Minis that we have tested in as many weeks (the other on the Whyte E120), and both felt exactly the same. We don’t think that it is because the Mini is the only brake with a mono-block caliper, and we suspect that it is has more to do with actuation ratios and the lever itself.
It’s a lever feel that won’t appeal to everyone, but if you like running your lever blades really close to the bar it is perfect — you’ll never pinch your middle finger between the end of the lever and the grip.
The profile of the CNC-machined lever isn’t as comfortable as the carbon version, but the standard Hope Mono Mini offers exactly the same level of stopping as the more expensive version.