Wheels mis-matching wheels

Discussion in 'Bicycle Repair' started by banzo, Jul 15, 2011.

  1. banzo

    banzo New Member

    My motor kit needed a new rear hub so I'm upgrading my rear 20" wheel from a 28 to a 36-spoked wheel. The change should help with the added #32 of hardware back there.

    Meanwhile, my original 20" front wheel [24 spokes] is going to take a beating on these rural roads in bad repair -- more than when I was pedaling -- plus the added weight of the new hardware. For now I'm going to see how long I can run it until I destroy it; the budget is tight. Meanwhile, it has a hollow axle with a quick-release. The front fork that came with the bike is a spring-loaded 20", Zoom Fitness 190. It's spongy with my weight bearing down on it. It was designed for kids.

    I'm thinking of upgrading the fork to a 20" Suntour "Swingshock" [model depending on when they release this new animal] and using a 36-spoke rim. Alternately, I could go to a 24" fork with a Mag wheel like those used in BMX. Any thoughts on which route might hold-up better being motorized on rural roads in poor repair?

    Just a reminder, since I'm on blood thinners for life, a head-bump for some could be fatal for me. I have to be extra-cautious about my activities. Since front wheels do 70% of the stopping, when I upgrade to a new fork, is getting a disk brake in front worth the extra expense/trouble? Also, is up-sizing my front wheel from 20"-to-24" likely to make that much of any difference with handling? ["So-what" if my handlebars are 2" higher. Right?]

  2. 2strokepoke

    2strokepoke Member

    i would say getting disk brakes is definately worth it as you can get much shorter stops than caliper or coaster brakes though i'm not sure of your current brake set up. a 24 inch fron wheel with a 20'' rear should be alright below 20 mph but idk what it would do at greater speeds.
  3. sparky

    sparky Active Member

    24" in front and 20" in back sounds great. I think GEBE describes the gearing for 20" as "aggressive", which I like... and taller tires are always better than shorter tires when it comes to absorbing bumps.... so it sounds like you have a winner.

    I've never had disc brakes, so I can't comment... but I can ask... would you really want to "stop quicker" with your front wheel?? V-brakes stop plenty well enough as it is. A back wheel with disc brakes would be my preference...
  4. fanatic

    fanatic New Member

    Front Disc would be the way to go. The difference between the disc and the v-brake is that the disc is a lot smoother. The disc brakes are also a lot easier to pull. Your two options are hydrolic and mechanical discs.

    Don't be afraid of the disc up front having too much power. You just don't pull as hard on the lever.