You are a biking champ - ruler of the vast mountain trails. But your fame will become dull if you don’t understand the various parts of your mean machine. So to become a complete champ it is necessary to enhance your knowledge about different mountain bike parts.
The Basic Parts Of A Mountain Bike
The frame of a mountain bike is smaller than that of a road bike. But the angle is very relaxing for the rider so that he can maneuver the bike with skillful agility over different grounds. Mountain bike manufacturers build bikes, which are gender specific. So while you buy a bike be sure to get the right sizing.
The handlebars of a mountain bike are flat, usually as wide as the rider’s shoulders. However, depending on the rider’s preference it could be narrower or wider. Riser bars are fast becoming popular as it looks attractive and gives the riders a more upright position. You can add bar ends to the handlebars, which will allow more hand positions and give more comfort to the rider.
Bike Crank And Derailleur
A crank is connected to the bottom bracket of the frame with pedals attached to the tip of each crank. Crank has chainrings attached to it. The gear and chainrings are outfitted with derailleurs. The derailleurs, using the shifters that are placed at the handlebars, derail one gear to the other and the chain from one chainring to the other. The finer the quality of the derailleur the more exact the shifting will be.
Shifters activate the front and rear derailleurs setting off the motion of the chain from one gear to the other.
Three basic types of shifters are:
1. Thumb Shifter: These are the most basic shifters that are fastened on top of handlebars and are operated by a push and pull of the thumb and the index finger respectively.
2. Rapid Fire Shifters: Rapid-fire shifters are generally fixed at the bottom of the handlebar and are activated by a two push buttons. For newer models a push and pull lever is used.
3. Grip Shifters: A grip shifter acts like a motorcycle throttle. To shift up to a lighter gear you have to turn the grip shift for the rear derailleur inwards. And to shift down to a heavier gear turn the grip shift outward.
Mountain bikes are meant to stomp on Steep Mountain trails and are usually equipped with outstanding gear ratios. The most popular one is the 36x34, which the mountain biker christens as “granny” gear. With this gear, you can trudge steep hills at a high tempo.
Today’s mountain bikes have passed the stage of coaster brakes. Today the “V” brakes or the linear pull-type brakes are regular in mountain bikes. You can have Disk Brakes for high-end mountain bikes. Disk Brakes are highly proficient, as its feat does not get clogged by water or mud. You must keep your timing intact for a good braking performance.
The mountain bike riders use two types of pedals. One is the toe clip, which can be made up of metal or plastic and is compatible with any kind of rubber shoe. The second type is the clipless pedal for which the biker has to wear a special kind of shoe. Clipless pedals raise the transfer of power from the rider to the bike.
A saddle is necessary for your comfort while you chomp your way through a rugged ride. Make your seat comfortable with a perfect saddle for you.
Wheels and Tires
There are plenty of wheel sets in the market, which will ensure high performance. Mostly these wheels are durable and light but before buying a wheel keep in mind the safety factor.
Tires are the most important parts of the mountain bike. They should have a good grip for a smooth experience. A bad tire can sour up your whole journey ending it up in some gutter.
Today the suspension system has become essential for a mountain bike and with improved technology, suspensions are now cheaper and simpler to handle. This is evident in fork suspension system of hardtail mountain bikes.
Knowing about the components of a mountain bike will make your bike live long and healthy always ready for a rousing journey.
Robert Sheehan is a freelance writer and co-owner of