Everything You Need To Know About MTB Wheels | Mountain Bike Jargon Buster

Everything You Need To Know About MTB Wheels | Mountain Bike Jargon Buster

– Of course we all
(hip hop music) ride on wheels, but how much do you really know about those wheels? Well, in this video we’re
gonna take a wheelie and then look at what is beneath you, break down the individual components, and give you all the vital stats. So, let’s take a look at those wheels, and you’ve got different sizes. You’ve got 24 inch. You’ve got 26 inch. You’ve got 27 and a half,
and then the big ones, the 29 inch wheels, and that comes down to the rim diameter. So, you’ve got your rim here. Then, you’ve got your spokes. You can get these bladed. You can get them straight. All sorts, we’re gonna get
into that in a little bit, and then, of course,
you’ve got the centre part which is this hub right here. You’ve got bearings inside of there, and then this thing right here, well that’s you’re free hub. Okay, so first things
first, let’s take a look at what actual axle
widths the hubs come in. Taking the front wheel,
you’ve got standard QR, and then this one here
is a little bit bigger. You can actually see that
it’s a 15 mil diameter. You can also get that in a 20 mil, and then you’ve got the boost option, which is 110 millimetres in width, 15 or 20 depending on your fork. Let’s pick up that rear wheel, though. There’s slightly more options here, and it is a little bit more complicated. So, you’ve got, you can already see that that is actually a lot wider, just to get that cassette
onto the wheel itself, and then you can get
these in quick release, which is normally 135,
you then get it in 142, and also 148, which that boos option, too, but for those big downhill bikes, you actually find they’ve
got a wider hub space, and just to give it a little
bit more strength and rigidity. You’ll get into 150 mil,
and also even 156 mil for some of those newer bikes. So, it’s quite an option,
and if you’re thinking about getting new wheels, then this is a main consideration you
should be thinking about, because you don’t want to
get that in the wrong size. Okay, so what I want to
actually talk about now is the freehub, and this little thing is what really drives the wheel forward, but in this case, first of
all, what I want to talk about is the different sizes that you get it. You can get it in a SRAM XD
driver body, which is this, or you actually get it
in a Shimano freehub, which has got slightly longer splines, all the way along the freehub body, but what’s really
interesting about this thing is the pawls, and that’s
these little things right here which are actually on springs, and they’ll spring back and forth,
and when they’re connected to the ratchet system of the hub, that is what allows you to accelerate. The biggest decision
that you’ve got to make is about that rim, and this
comes down to the material. You can either go for a carbon one, or an aluminium one. If you go for alloy one, then
it’s gonna be a lot cheaper. You’re gonna save a lot of money if you do need to replace
a rim at any point. Also, one big thing that a lot of people don’t actually realise is
when you dent that rim, it can quite often save
you from a puncture, but the carbon rim, and this is something that I’m quite new to. I’ve not really ridden one all the much, but it does really improve
the ride of the bike, and makes it a lot more stiffer. So, you’re really pushing
the bike into those turns. You’ve got extra grip. The pressure is really
going through the tyres. It’s not moving, and it’s a
lot easier to maintain, too. It’s not gonna out of true so easily, but the big thing about rim choice is make sure that if you
are buying new wheels that you get them tubeless ready. This has got to be one of the
best upgrades to your bike. Sticking with rims, what
I want to talk about is this internal rim width right here. What you’re going to find is if you’ve got a wider one, then it’s just gonna change that tyre profile. You’ve got a larger volume. So, it’s gonna dampen
some of those small bumps, especially when you’re
going through rock gardens, and then in turns you’re
gonna have a lot more grip. Personally for me, I like to
have a bit of a wider rim, especially when I’m riding in duro, and wider the rim, you’re gonna have a bigger tyre profile,
which can lead to punctures. So, just experiment. Do some research, and
find out what really suits your riding style. Okay, so we’ve talked
about that rim choice. We’ve broken down the hub and told you each part that’s in there. There’s one thing left to talk about, and that’s the spokes, these guys that connect everything together and ensure that you’ve got a super strong wheel. What I want to talk about, though, is a traditional J-bend
versus this style here, which is a straight pull,
and you can see the spoke goes right in through the hub flange, and all the way to the nipple. So, if you do break one
of these, it is dead easy to replace, but there
are some trade offs, too. You can actually find that these can sometimes seize into the
hub or into the nipple, and the can be really hard
to actually tension back up. With blade spokes and the straight pull, they’re a little bit
easier to sort of adjust and sort out, but the J-bend is sort of the traditional, the easier one to do, but it does have it’s weaknesses. You might have found that
you’ve snapped a spoke right up there, and that
is what this straight pull really eliminates, and if I was you, if you’re gonna get custom built wheels, and you can find a hub that
suits the straight pull spoke, then go for it. Okay, so there is the
wheel hopefully explained. There’s only one point that I’ve missed, and I probably think that’s the nipples. I’m sure you gonna pick up, and ask some question about that. Well, you know, they go for brass or alloy ones right here,
and then the cool thing is you can actually colour coordinate these to your hubs, or any other
anodized parts on the bike. Hopefully I’ve explained it all. If you’ve got any questions, then please leave it in the comments down below, and we’ll do our very best to answer them. If you want to watch
some videos from GMBN, then make sure that you
click right on that globe, cause you’ll never miss another one, and then click up there to find out is upgrading your wheels worth it, click down there for how to
fit and choose new wheels, and then there’s only
two things left to do. If you’ve found this useful,
then give it a share, and a thumb up like.

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. GMBN what do the different axles look like? I don't know the difference between QR and 15mm. And what's a bolt thru?

  2. How it works when you stop pedaling and you hear that sound from the wheel? I kinda guess it, but im not sure

  3. Can someone explain me engagements points
    -what is the minimum engagements/the max ?
    -is there a real difference between 30and40 points
    – what 4,75degree mean ?
    – and does a trial hub fits in an enduro rim ?

  4. Argh, I need new rims, I got my maxis dhf on both and damn the wheels are heavy. But I got no monies for carbon rims.

  5. I'm disappointed with the Diamond back 29er recoil tubeless is leaking from the joint ,I thought they were one piece ring like my Bontrager in my other bike

  6. is there any way i can put larger wheels on a bike? i ride 26" but being 6'6 it looks a bit silly despite having an XL frame

  7. You said 156 for DH hubs, its 157mm my good man, I would hate to see guys looking for wheels for there DH bike and can not find them in 156mm.

  8. Yo GMBN I love the show. I have a question about about 110 boost hubs. I'm ditching my RS1 for a pike rct3 with boost spacing. My question is will I need a wider rim to accommodate the hub? The rims that I'm riding on now are Stan Crest 29s.

  9. what are the spokes generally made of? is there such a thing as a carbon fibre spoke? how much lighter is a full carbon fibre wheel set?

  10. Should I worry too much about boost spacing? I've seen a bike that I like but it is 142 x12, will this be a disadvantage?

  11. Quick question, I have been looking for replacement bearings for my wheel. The bearings that I removed are held in a ring (not cartridge bearings) and cant find replacements. Could I use free bearings instead? I've been to 3 bike shops and none could help me.

  12. if you run tubeless you can run lower tyre pressures, meaning there is less air in the tyre , with less air in the tyre would this make you slower #askgmbn

  13. What should u do if the wheel shakes. It goes through a shake into the disc brakes and makes a horrible scratching noise could you suggest what I can do to fix it ?

  14. Important!!! Don't use Stan's No Tubes tubeless sealant if your wheels have anodized spoke nipples. The ammonia in the sealant corrodes the nipples and can lead to spoke and wheel failure! I've seen it happen hundreds of times. Either run brass, or use another brand.

  15. straight pull?!?!? BAH! see how your local bike mechanics feel about rebuilding your wheels with these stupid abominations. the complications go on and on and on. look into it for yourselves. every top end wheelbuilder knows:
    J BEND for life baby!!

  16. you did miss the whole other side of the wheel where the rotor attaches.. I'd say thats a pretty crucial area of the wheel!

  17. So, I know it's a bit of a stupid question, but.. Do spokes force the rim into/towards the freehub or vice-versa? 🙂

  18. I'm looking to upgrade my bike. Which should I do, buy a dropper seat post or convert to tubeless tires?

  19. I don't know what this "wheel" thing you speak of is I just call it "the circle thing that I always warp and need trued"

  20. Don't know if it's just me stuck in my ways but tubeless just seams like a lot of effort and expense for what seams like a very small gain. I've had tubes in my bike for 2 years and not one flat

  21. Good video as it covers some really good ground. Would it be possible have a look at the relationship between rim width and tyre width i.e. what tyre width range should you have for specific rim width?Also any info on Fat bike wheel measurements please? #loveafatty

  22. my wheel is having tire with size 26*1.95,
    can i replace 26*2.2 tyre on that same wheel ?? or should i buy new wheel with extra rim width ??
    does rim also hv extra widths ??
    plzz confirm it to me

  23. it would have been nice to see you explain for the bike newbs the actual concept of a spoked bicycle wheel. How a few spokes and a thin bit of alloy can support you and resist the stresses of riding. Spoke counts, spoke tensions, these sorts of things.

  24. You guys just keep making amazing videos! Y'all helped inspire me to start my own channel! Keep up the great work! 🙂

  25. When building a custom wheel, I go with the exact opposite of Scotty and choose J bend spokes. They are almost universally available, cheap, and plenty strong. All benefits when you are away from home and suddenly need a spoke to save your vacation.

  26. I have a Mavic Crossride wheelset, but I bent the rear wheel rim. These Wheels uses 24 holes rims, where can I find one to replace the bent one?

  27. I want a louder hub, I love the sound of them! How do I know that the one I'm buying will be louder than the one I own now? #askgmbn

  28. #AskGMBN- Can you replace hubs if it has the right number of holes without replacing your spokes and rim?

  29. I am having a hard time searching for answers. I need to know what is enough tire clearance for MTB. I am halfway to building my hardtail, planning to put 2.4" tires on my WTB i23 rims.

  30. Wheel size includes the tyre, the rim diameter is less than the wheel size.

  31. Man…the video stopped to buffer three times right after your wheelie pun in the beginning.

    Whew. Glad that’s over !:)

  32. can (hope) adapters effect if the rim is right in the middle of the hub / middle of chainstays? In case it doesn't how can I make sure to check if the rim in deed is in the middle of the hub without special tools?

  33. Can u use a 15x100mm fork on a frame with a 148×12 thru axle but use a 15×100 wheel on front and a 142×12 on back with the adaptor kit does it matter using boost on back and normal on front

  34. For an introduction to wheels (presumably for beginners), it was
    visually difficult to follow. He would point to something but we didn’t go close up , then there was a close up from a DIFFERENT ANGLE and I couldn’t tell what he had been pointing to.

  35. I would like to build a 29er rear around a Shim XTR M9111 142 hub and I'm looking for a spoke chart

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