I don't get the odd wheel sizes on my second hand bike

harry25

Retro Newbie
Yes I have seem the word Mullet mentioned somwhere before , I have checked it out and it refers to bikes with different wheel sizes. Although I have 2 wheel sizes I have decided to keep it simple and stick to 26 inch which I prefer which it appears is "more standard" nowadays anyway . It is interesting though to see what works and what does not and clearly different sizes are an interesting variation. Still I am right at the beginning of my revisit to bikes and have now "painted up "my old rusty spanners . The ones that intrigued me were the ones that had different markings on either side : they must have been using two different scales. And I need not have bought a new Pedal Pro spanner as I seem to have found something similar.so it is always best to check what is already in the tool box!

The next Job on the "to do" list. The spikey front wheel (with the spokes going too far into the rim) is the next job on the list .I have seen various fixes for this on You Tube , duc tape , Insulation tape , and the cloth liners . On my wheel spokes almost pushed through the old liners . I think it will probably need 3 layers of liner . I cannot remember seeing old wheels like this before . Time to get some duc tape in . I will probobly have to change the front wheel if this project goes anywhere but right now I am "training myself up" so will stick to old bits and keep the spend low for now . When I know what I am doing a bit more, I can also spend a bit more on better kit .

I suppose there are at least two aspects to enjoy :- riding the bike itself and the DIY maintenance side of things !. I suppose this varies a bit between different individuals
 
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Kult Friction

Retro Guru
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Ironically, some modern bikes now come with almost this exact setup as an option, which is appropriately called a "mullet". You very nearly invented an MTB trend here..just pipped at the post by a few years 👍

I did have a good chuckle at your second post. Glad you got it sorted.

Give it time and it will be the other way around. The larger wheel on the back, the smaller on the front. Bike industry is prone to doing anything in order to upset the status quo and find a new niche market to flog their latest tat off to.

Odd wheel sizing is nothing new, and I'd of thought common knowledge to anyone into retro bikes. It's not a new fangled 'emperors new clothes' conjured up by men in suits to extract more money from the consumer in order to keep the corporate wheel turning (Yep, Pun intended) but there is genuine merit to this setup.......

I'm sure there's more, but here's 3 legitimate MTB's that spring to mind that had odd size wheels, so you could say history is repeating itself (as it has a tendency to do) with the earliest I can recall being 37 years old!

Cannondale with the SM500 in 1984
Raleigh with The Edge in 1987
Ibis with the Mountain Trials in 1989

After this Specialized utilised this setup for their BigHit and Max Backbone DH FRS bikes for a reasonable amount of time (Late 90's to mid '00's iirc)

A lot of what has advanced the MTB (for the better & not just for the sake of it as some may believe) has been borrowed from it's motorized cousin, where you'll also notice matching wheel sizes is a rarity, especially in the off road market where it's all but non existent.......
 
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harry25

Retro Newbie
Interesting info .Thanks for that . One other variation I had though of is more mundane :- varying the width of the wheel , say mixing one and three eighths on the front with one and a quarter on the back . I could have done this and scrapped the front wheel but instread I going down the "make do and mend approach ". (for now at least). At least this way I can learn about wheels without putting the spend up front!
 

Kult Friction

Retro Guru
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Wind the neck in sunbeam, I'm not accusing anyone(maybe except our beloved bike industry) Post is humerous, tongue in cheek.
Err, Not really sure what you mean by that? but okay..... Sunbeam? :confused:

I was just stating odd size wheels are nothing new, with a few examples should someone want to take a look as such early examples may have evaded their radar, after all this is a bike site dedicated to retro bikes......... We don't all have to be cynics, we are allowed to embrace change especially when it has a nod to the past and has technical merit......... so I really don't understand your issue 🤔
 

dyna-ti

Gold Trader
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It came across as being sarcastic. Maybe not your intention, but there you go.

as anyone would know ;)
 

dyna-ti

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Deepest apologies then. Whole pandemic thing and being stuck inside for over a year has left me a bit fragile temper wise. Maybe always looking for what isnt there. :)
 

Kult Friction

Retro Guru
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Deepest apologies then. Whole pandemic thing and being stuck inside for over a year has left me a bit fragile temper wise. Maybe always looking for what isnt there. :)
Hey, honestly it's all good......... It'll do that to you (anyone) & I totally get where you're coming from....... Appreciate the apology, but really no offence taken 👍 :)
 

grey-beard

Orange 🍊 Fan
Don't forget, how could we, the "Trek 69er" from around 2009 I believe, 29 upfront good old 26 out back, genius.
 

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