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Cycling Components

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Do you want to know more about cycling components?

The components are, together with the frame, the fundamental part of a bicycle. Today the bicycle components market is one of the most powerful and, therefore, year after year we find them more sophisticated and with better competitive advantages. The most prominent components of a bicycle are the wheels, the drivetrain (cassettes, chains, chainsets, chainrings, etc.), the brakes, the handlebars, the forks and rear shocks, the saddles and the tyres.

How to choose the components of a bicycle?

For all components we must take into account the manufacturer, which should preferably be of recognised category. From here, the price and characteristics will vary depending on the model.

First, we must consider the use : recreational, transport or sports. In the first two cases, it is better to bet on resistance, comfort and, above all, simplicity. Bicycles for sporting use, starting from a certain range, tend to have mechanical components that are too complex, may not be necessary and that require more maintenance. For sporting use, always take into account your level of fitness and the type of cycling you will be doing.

In the case of the MTB , the most important components would be the front suspension, the rear shock (in case of double suspension), the front and rear derailleurs and the wheels.
Depending on whether we like more forest tracks or trails and rocky descents we will choose a type of suspension with more or less travel.
We can also choose our cranks and chainrings depending on whether we are going to ride on steep and difficult terrain, since several gears are required, or in the city or on simple roads, where only one or two gears may be required.
26 inch wheels are the standard for downhill, freeride and BMX bikes, while 29 inch wheels are increasingly popular for endurance, cross country or trail cycling. 29 inch wheels have the advantage that they improve pedal power, offering more acceleration and better traction, but on the other hand they are heavier and more difficult to manoeuvre. Therefore, the last generation of wheels, are the 27.5 inches, with the smae advantages of traction and acceleration as the 29 inch ones, but without adding excessive weight or reducing maneuverability.
Mountain bike handlebars can be flat or upright. The former favours aerodynamics on the bike, since keeping the arms closer together and holding a less upright position allows the cyclist to reach higher speeds and increases the traction of the front wheel on uphill tracks, by being more inclined over the handlebars. Upright or riser handlebars increase comfort and stability by placing the arms further apart and the body more upright. They also increase control over the bicycle and add safety on descents. For this reason it is rare to see flat handlebars on bicycles with double suspension. Road bike handlebars are for holding a more inclined position on the bicycle. The hands can adopt four different positions that will change depending on the gradient of the road.

The components of a road bike are the pedals, the derailleurs, the brakes and the gear shifters. Their prices vary depending on their weight and precision.

10-speed shifters are the standard for medium to high range road bikes, although some bikes offer 11-speed options. Starting bikes have 8 or 9 speeds. Choosing between double or triple chainsets (2 or 3 chainrings in the front) will depend on how and where you are going to ride your bike. Triple chainsets offer a wider range of gear changes, making ascents easier. Experienced cyclists are usually strong enough to use double chainsets. Those with less experience, or urban cyclists who ride with their bikes loaded, should look for bikes with triple chainsets. Most non-competitive bicycles are assembled with the so-called Compact chainset; two slightly smaller chainrings, usually of 34 and 50 teeth, this allows cyclists to tackle practically any type of route even if their physical state is not optimal.

The wheels are the star component of road bikes. The total weight and speed of the bike depend to a large extent on them. Carbon fiber and aluminum wheels are the most common. The use of aerodynamic or lenticular wheels are also common, especially on track or triathlon bikes. They have a high resistance to air, especially when spinning at high speeds.

Regarding the brakes , hydraulic discs have been introduced in mountain bikes and it is rare to find any bicycles with rim brakes or V-Brakes as standard. In road bicycles, rim or caliper brakes (or speed reducers) predominate, and disc brakes are only being introduced in cyclo-cross because of their greater power on wet terrain.

When it comes to tyres , tubeless ones will offer us a better performance than clinchers, by reinforcing the puncture protection thanks to the action of the liquid inside the tyre. Resistance and comfort are the main advantages of tubeless tires, despite the greater complexity involved in terms of assembly or maintenance. Another type of tire is tubular which are noramlly used for competition. With an inner tube completely wrapped in the tyre, they allow for better tracing power in bends, absorption of vibrations and comfort.

As for the pedals , for sports use it is better for them to be automatic; they improve the performance on the bicycle, allowing more strength to be transferred with the legs. In addition, they prevent injuries by keeping the knee always in the same position. For in the city it is much more comfortable to use any classic platform pedal.

The saddle is a component that must be chosen personally. The width should be set according to the distance between the ischia (the lower bones of the pelvis), which in the case of women is usually greater, and the inclination of the body when pedaling. As we lean our body forward with a more sporting position, the distance between the ischia decreases. The most important of all is to sit by placing the ischium in the widest part of the saddle, this will ensure that the perineal and genital area is free of compressions ensuring a good blood flow to the legs.

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Opinions featured in Cycling Components

Michelin Country Rock Cover 27.5x1.75 black
Good quality
I recommend this especially on long ride pavement
Marjhone, the 12 December 2019
Vittoria Kevlar Anti Puncture Tyre Liner 29"
good quality
good quality, a liitle work is needed to fit it into tire
Tomasz, the 27 November 2019
Fulcrum Racing 1/3/5/7/Zero/XRL Freehub Body for 9/10/11-Speed Shimano HG
Couldn't find it anywhere else
Spent a while searching for this freehub body, this was my last resort.
Gary, the 23 November 2019
Selle Italia Max SLR Gel SuperFlow L3 Saddle Black
Great quality
Good products
Ian, the 14 November 2019
Shimano Dura-Ace 9000 Right Handle Mechanism + Rubber
Dura Ace STI Right Lever Replacement Mechanism
Being an original item from Dura Ace, it was to their normal standard. It was a shame that the original eventually failed and wasn't as robust as the previous 7900 and 7800 STI which I never had an issue with.
MARK, the 13 November 2019
Shimano STEPS E7000 Right control with 700mm cable
Make sure this is the switch you require
I mistook this switch for the power select switch (walk, eco, trail and boost). It is not that switch and cannot be used for that purpose. This it purely for Di2 rear mech shifting. I'm not sure why Shimano developed two types of switches as surely they could do both jobs with one switch and have the function set up in their app/software.
Darren, the 13 November 2019
Prologo Kappa EVO PAS T2.0 Saddle Matte Black
Good value
It has a pro feeling about it.. I have had much more expensive prologo saddles than this one but this is as good
Mads, the 11 November 2019
Schwalbe Big Ben 27.5x2.00 K-Guard TwinSkin Wired Tyre black
great tire
best ride for comfort
kenneth, the 9 November 2019
Saddle Selle SMP Extra red
Early days
Couple of rides definitely better than my previous saddle hopefully it will prove to be the answer
Phil, the 6 November 2019
Brake caliper Shimano RS785 hydraulic road p.mount
It does what it should!
Does what it should. Good braking in all conditions
tim, the 5 November 2019
SRAM Guide R / RE / DB5 / Code R G2 Spare Piston Handle
Works great
Cane fast. Works great. Can’t fault service or product
Lian, the 4 November 2019
Schwalbe G-One Allround 27.5x1.35 Performance Dual Tyre Black
Great tire
I had a really hard time fitting it on a Mavic wheel with 4 levers but the result was a good gripping tire on the wet pavement and not bad rolling resistance. I think it will perform well in the snow
Pierre, the 24 October 2019
Fox Factory Transfer Factory Series 30. 9mm Telescopic Seatpost
Simply the best!
This is defenately the absolute best dropper on the market
Michael, the 23 October 2019
Tip-Top Box of Patches Red F0 (100 units)
Yes. Hard to find this product elsewhere
Adequate quality for road bike tyres
Brendan , the 21 October 2019
Pro Koryak Telescopic Handle 27.2x70mm black
Wrong description.
It says total length 400mm. But it’s actually 450mm so it didn’t fit my bike. Blame shimano.
Aleksander, the 10 October 2019
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