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Wheel size

chrisofconcordchrisofconcord Posts: 8
edited November 2007 in Workshop
Does wheel size ( 26 vs 700) affect the ride or safety of a road bike?



  • John.TJohn.T Posts: 3,698
  • Thank you for your reply.

    So does this mean you choose size by what looks proportionatly best with frame and kit?
  • GarybeeGarybee Posts: 815
    I choose size by what works with the frame. If i tried to put mtb wheels on my road bikes the callipers wouldn't reach the rims.

    Hypocrisy is only a bad thing in other people.
  • John.TJohn.T Posts: 3,698
    My answer to your question was totaly correct but I do not think that was the question you meant to ask. I believe that you meant 'can I fit either wheel to any bike'. Garybee has answered most of that but you also need to look at the width (OLN, over lock nuts) of the rear hub. MTB and some touring wheels are 135mm while most road hubs are 130mm.
    This is the trouble with forums. You need to ask the question carefully or you get pedantic sods like me giving glib answers. We usually get there in the end though.
  • Thank you John. I appreciate your thoroughness.

    I am asking because i am exploring how to change the look of my bike. The technicalities such as coordinating components are details I am learning how to recognize, and remedy.

    So far I have found that to change wheel size to achieve a less squat look to the bike it is necessary to alter wheels and brakes. This amounts to an approx $ 600 whim.

    The bikes rides well as is.

    I only asked the question to find out if my whim was going to result in some unforseen problem. One chap mentioned toe to wheel clearance. That was useful.

    Again thank you for taking the time to pursue the question.

    Good riding,
  • Random VinceRandom Vince Posts: 11,374
    it will change the handling slightly, a larger wheel rolls better over rougher surfaces as it doesnt drop into the gaps and cracks as easily

    a smaller wheel is quicker to accelerate but a larger wheel is easier to keep rolling at speed

    the gyroscopic effect of a wheel spinning keeping the bike upright is greater with a larger wheel so a bike is easier to throw arround under you with a smaller size wheel

    these are the arguments with 24 inch and 26 inch wheels when debating for mountain bikes so the last point doesnt really apply here.

    the reach of your brakes is the main thing to take into consideration here, i'm still debating if i can fit 700c wheels to my bike as the brakes might not reach due to the positioning of the brake mount since the bike was made for 27inch which are slightly larger
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  • Thank you, Vince
  • nicklousenicklouse Posts: 50,675 Lives Here
    another issue is the feel of the steering as the trail will change.

    700 to 26 and the steering will feel faster and vics versa (presuming that the overal diameter is also changing.your gear ratios will change and the rollability of the wheels.

    But the bigest consideration is the brakes if you are using rim brakes.
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