How to choose wheels for a bicycle

Wheels play an important role in the construction of a modern bicycle. It is on their type that the roll of a bicycle and its ability to certain conditions, maximum speed and efficiency braking, as well as many other features.

choose a wheel for a bicycle

Which wheels to choose? Top manufacturers

Budget bikes and mid-range models are very often equipped with inexpensive wheels whose functionality leaves much to be desired. And the first thing that comes to mind is to replace them to a better and more functional counterpart. Usually, the choice is made from products of famous manufacturers whose name everyone heard:

  1. Continental

  2. Dunlop

  3. Presta

  4. Schrader

Each of the above brands has a large number various models designed for use in certain conditions. When choosing, you should pay attention not only to specifications and catalog descriptions, but also on reviews specific users, taking into account both positive and and negative sides.

Options for choosing wheels for a bicycle. What to pay special Attention?

Choosing an alternative to the wheels mounted on your bike, to take into account the following features are necessary:

Rim Profile Design

an important parameter that directly affects wheel reliability and its resistance to mechanical stress.

  1. The oldest and least perfect is the single-walled rim design. Such wheels can be found in old Soviet bicycles manufactured by MMVZ, as well as modern cheap Chinese bikes. They are suitable, perhaps, for a power ride on the city without any sharp and dynamic loads.

  2. A two-wall design is considered more advanced, it can be found in most modern bike models. Good strength and ability to withstand mechanical stresses coupled with a low price – these are its main advantages.

  3. Three-walled profile design is characteristic only for MTB upper price range. Functional features of such rims maximum, but the price is far from budget;

Number of needles

The parameter directly affecting the reliability of the wheel, the ability operate it in extreme conditions, as well as on which rider weight is able to withstand the bike. The larger their number, the bike is suitable for more severe operating conditions. TO for example, mountain bikes are almost always equipped wheels on 32 spokes, road – on 28. An important role is played by the material from which the spokes are made. Preference should to give to steel or titanium spokes, they provide maximum reliability and rigidity of the entire structure, allowing the manufacturer to reduce the total number of spokes without compromising reliability and functionality.

The method of mounting the spokes to the rim

Direct attachment of a spoke to an aluminum rim. The the method has a significant drawback – in the place of attachment of the spokes cracks occur quite quickly, which can lead to knitting needles.

Mounting with pistons – special steel inserts in the rim to which the spoke is attached. A similar design is essential increases overall strength, and also leads to a rise in price wheels, and therefore on budget bikes there is enough seldom.

Design and parameters of used tires

As with car tires, bicycle tires are divided into many conditional classes that differ between softness of rubber used, profile height, type and tread pattern. Pay attention to the parameters tires. They are indicated by two digits going through the dash or fraction sign, the first of which indicates the width, the second – landing diameter.

Choose the diameter of the bike wheels

wheel diameter

The diameter of the wheel used depends on the type of bike and its suitability for certain operating conditions.

  1. Small wheels, 13-15 inches in diameter, are mounted on children’s bicycles and their teenage counterparts;

  2. Wheels with a diameter of 20-22 inches are widely used in “slow” citybikes, involving a leisurely move around the city;

  3. Mountain MTB and cross-country bikes almost always equipped with wheels with a diameter of 24-28 inches and powerful, bright pronounced mud tread;

  4. Wheels of maximum radius (about 30-32 inches) equipped with narrow and hard tread mounted on road bikes and models for triathlon. Their mission is to maximize speed in extremely short intervals.

In the following articles, our experts tell you how to choose mountain bike, secrets to choosing a bike chain and features choosing a road bike.


Attention! This material is subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a buying guide.

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