HOW TO MEASURE BIKE TIRES (All You Need To Know)

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Your bycycle may have tubular or clincher tires. Know detailed information about how to measure bike tires to get the best tires for your cycle. 

HOW TO MEASURE BIKE TIRES

Does your life become more colorful on a sunny day while riding your bike?

If you are a bike lover like me, maybe these words have put a smile on your face. From green activists to office-goers, let alone the cyclists, bicycle or bike is a quality means of transportation.

The surprising thing is, many of us ignore the aspect of sizing our bike tires. That’s why I crafted this simple but useful piece on how to measure bike tires.

 

PRO TIPS ABOUT HOW TO MEASURE BIKE TIRES

WHY SHOULD YOU LEARN TO MEASURE YOUR BIKE TIRES?

Allow me to explain – Most of the time, when any need for upgrade or replacement arises, riders are happy with whatever bike tire that will come along or leave it up to the hand of the local bike shop.

However, a smart biker might ask himself, “This should probably be an easy task.” In addition to that, if you want to buy the tires online, you should know your requirements like – the size of your bike tire, what type of tire you want to go with tubular tire or clincher tire? Or you may want to buy a tubeless tire etc. In today’s world, every tire has its size marked outside, but these numbers gradually fades.

Before jumping into measuring, it would be nice to know some basics on bike tire size & what do the numbers mean, which are printed on tires.

BIKE TIRE SIZE:

The conventional sizing system was based on the measurement of the diameter. It was not a good quality sizing system. The development of tires & rims, nullified this type of sizing system. Meanwhile, companies developed their sizing structure. This phenomenon made it extraordinarily hard to buy a tire. To solve this problem on sizing, ISO introduced a standardized sizing system.

EXPLANATION OF THE NUMBERS:

Almost every tire has the size printed on it. But it can wear off easily. The larger number stands for the tire diameter, while the smaller number tells you the tire width. Usually,these measurements are in inches, but millimeters can also be used.

Additionally, these tires can come with various sizes depending on types. Some common measurement for the diameter is 26, 27, 27.5, 29 (all are in inches), etc. Bicycle wheels can cope up with a range of different widths, so it’s not necessary to match the exact width with the old one during the replacement.

LET’S START THE ACTUAL MEASURING:

STEP 1-KEEP THE BIKE IN AN UPRIGHT POSITION:

Stand your bike upright or lean it against a wall. This position of the bike allows you to measure smoothly. If you are doing it alone, I would recommend you to use a retractable metal tape rather than a plastic tape as it’s stronger and will leave you with a free hand.

STEP 2 – MEASURING THE DIAMETER:

Put down the tape against the center of the wheel. From there, expand the tape in a straight fashion towards the edge of the outer tire. Now double the length that you have just measured and you have the diameter. Pretty easy, right?

However, in most cases, tire diameters are whole numbers. So, if your measurement emerges to something like 26.8, then take it as 27 inches.

STEP 3 – MEASURING THE WIDTH:

It is easier than measuring the dia. Place the tape on the ground across the tire’s tread going from one side to the other side in a straight direction. The width may vary to a great extent depending on the intended use of the tires. For example, bikes that are made for rough terrain have tires with a wider width, while bikes with tires of narrow width promise a fast & smooth ride.

STEP 4 – INCORPORATING THE MEASUREMENT:

Generally, the standard procedure is – place the diameter first, then the width. For example, if you find the diameter as 27 inches and the width as 2.4 inches, the printed measurement would be 27 X 2.4.

MEASURING THE CIRCUMFERENCE:

This measurement is useful, especially if you need to calibrate your bikes speedometer or GPS. If you buy a new cyclometer or want to calibrate the one you already have, you will need the wheel’s circumference.

You can measure the circumference of a bike tire in two ways, it depends on whether you know the dimensions of the diameter or not. As you are smart enough to measure the diameter by now, just multiply the diameter by Pi. As we all know, Pi is equal to 3.14. So, if the diameter is 27 inches, you multiply 27 by 3.14.

In case you don’t know the tire diameter, you can measure the circumference by using a string. At first, evenly wrap a string around the surface of the tire. Where the string returns to its straight point, make a mark or cut the string on the spot. This distance from one end to the marked/cut point – is the circumference of the bike tire.

TO SUM UP,

As a parting thought, I would like to say that measuring the tires of your bike is an easy process. The good news is that you don’t just ride on the two wheels, rather you have a clear understanding of- how to measure your bike tires.

I hope this article will benefit you while purchasing tires online or offline.

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