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A bicycle wheel guide: which type is right for you?

bicycle wheelbicycle wheel
bicycle wheelbicycle wheel


A bicycle wheel guide: which type is right for you?

Whether you are looking to upgrade your bike wheels or looking into buying a brand new bike- you will have to find the best wheels for you. Having a great set of bicycle wheels is paramount. Efficient bicycle tyres should be both durable and lightweight.

You might think that bicycle tyres are all the same but this is not true, more especially, mountain bike tyres. Choosing the perfect bike wheels is a bit complicated but not difficult to understand. There are different tyres for different bikes, for example, a tubeless wheel is not the same as clincher wheels. A good bicycle tyre should be able to support the weight of your body and also remain firm and lightweight.

It is important for a mountain bike tyres to be given a new set of wheels once in a while. Not only is it healthy for the performance of your bike, but it will also boost acceleration and deceleration. Many aspects of your bike such as braking and increase in speed will improve. Thus making is important for you to know all the types of mountain bikes and which one is perfect for you. Below is a guide we compiled on how to choose the best bicycle wheels for you.


Wheel glossary

  • Bearings - bearings allow the hub axles to rotate. The bearings on the wheels should be able to rotate freely without any notches
  • Hubs - hubs are at the centermost part of the wheel and they allow the axis to rotate. It is what holds the wheel and the bicycle together.
  • Rims - rims are on the outside of the bicycle wheel. The primary function of a rim is to hold the tyre in place.
  • Spokes - spokes are what connects the hub to the rims. Wheels have different numbers of spokes, this is varied because there are different sizes of wheels.


Clincher wheels

Clincher wheels are by far the most common type of wheels. If you are a beginner, it is highly likely that you have had a bicycle with a clincher. The word “clincher” refers to tyres that have a separate inner tube to hold the air. These types of tyres are used mainly by recreational cyclists.


Tubeless wheels

Tubeless wheels have no inner tube and they rely on air pressure to ensure that an airtight seal is created. The tubeless wheels have become increasingly popular over the years and perfect for mountain bikes.

They sometimes are referred to as two-way fit. Having tubeless wheels will allow your tyres to have low air pressure. Another thing to remember is that having a tubeless wheel will ensure that you never have tyre punctures.


Tubular wheels

Tubular wheels are those that have the tyre mounted onto the rims. They are relatively lighter than tubeless wheels and are used in sports and everyday riding. Be sure to carry an extra tube in case you have a puncture. Changing a tube is not a difficult task. You could either use a tube glue or a tubular tape to mount the tyres.


Thinking of buying a second hand?

It is no lie that buying bicycle accessories can be a bit pricey and because of this many cyclists choose to buy bicycle parts and accessories on secondhand. This is no problem as long as you know what to look for when buying online.

There are a few things to take a look at before buying a secondhand bicycle wheel. Firstly, you have to check if there is any hop with the height of the rims. Then, you want to spin both wheels to check for any buckling. Ensure that you ask the previous owner of the repair history on the wheels. This is important when buying second-hand wheels.


Maintaining your wheels

Once you’ve found the perfect wheel for you don’t celebrate too soon - the work does not end there. Just like any other equipment, bicycle wheels need to be maintained. There are a few ways to ensure that your wheels are kept in perfect condition.

Cleaning the bearings of your wheel are is a must, they need to be kept clean and regularly oiled. Regularly inspect the rims on your wheels for scrapes and chips. Damage to the rims is usually caused by riding over a pothole or curb.

Be sure to also lubricate your bike on parts where the metals touch. Do not use a household lubricate, ensure that you use a bike chain lubricate.


Final thoughts

Buying the perfect wheels for your bicycles can be a daunting experience. If you are not well versed regarding the types of tyres that are available and also the ones perfect for you, visit your nearest bike shop and speak to a professional for some assistance.

There are a variety of good tyres available on the market that includes new features such as puncture resistance tyres. Make sure you have checked out all of the options available to you before making your final decision.

bicycle wheel