April 20, 2017

This Wide Rim Phenomenon.

Wide Right Explained. Image courtesy of

As mountain bikers we love technology possibly alot more than the next cyclist … after all Disc Brakes, Suspension ( it’s coming for Road ), Thru-Axles are all trickle-down effects from the MTB world.

However, the one trend that we have to take ownership of is the WIDER IS BETTER rim mentality that seems to have gripped the market. Wider is NOT ALWAYS better in my opinion … how can I say that?

There are a few reasons that I believe we are being mislead when we ONLY factor in HOW WIDE IS YOUR RIM?

  1. there needs to be a good “ratio” between tyre width and rim width – that ratio is not yet set in stone but definitely exists
  2. tyres that were NOT designed for wide rim ( bigger volume ) application will never ride as well as you think – simply because their tread/knobs are in the wrong place compared to where they were designed to be …
  3. wide rims with wide tyres can cause major tyre clearance issues on a frame/bike that was not designed for that combination

An interesting read can be found on the No Tubes website – their ” Wide Right” concept is on the right track :

The current crop of SUPER WIDE rims matched to “NORMAL” width tyres is creating what No Tubes call the ” Bell Effect ” – riding a bike with this setup is really disappointing and quite honestly – dangerous!

So next time you consider a WIDER WIDER WIDER rim option , please consider which tyre width/brand you plan to use – the 2 are actually a system and getting one of them wrong will negate any benefits that you were trying to achieve.

A short blog post but hopefully some food-for-thought.

We are moving into our new warehouse this weekend so I hope to post some pics next week of our new home – in the Baakens Valley, Port Elizabeth.