How to Choose a BMX Bike

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Asking yourself a few simply questions before you buy a BMX bike will help make sure you choose the right bike for you. Some people ignore these considerations, only to end up with the wrong BMX bike. You do not want this to happen to you.

Things You'll Need

  • An understanding of how you will use the bike
  • Money
  • Determine what style of BMX is best for you. BMX comes in three styles--classic BMX, freestyle BMX and Jump Biker. Choose jump bike if you intend to do a lot of ramping. Choose freestyle if you want to learn a lot of tricks. Choose classic if you just need a good, reliable BMX bike.

  • Decide what you would like your frame to be made of. BMX bikes are usually made from two types of framing materials--chromoly steel or aluminum. Steel frames are sturdy and economical. Aluminum frames are more expensive, but are lightweight.

  • Determine the size of the frame for your BMX bikes. BMX bikes come in various sizes, mostly to make them comfortable for different age groups. Anyone over 12 years old will require a “full size” BMX bike frame, while those under 12 years old will require a smaller frame.

  • Determine the type of rims that best suit your needs. Freestyle BMX bikes usually have either mag rims or 48-spoke rims. Classic BMX bikes usually have a lighter weight, 32-spoke aluminum rim, which gives a little extra speed for racing. Jumping bikes require very strong rims, so they typically come with either 48-spoke rims or rims that have 36 heavy-duty 13 gauge spokes.

  • Determine the style of brakes you would like to use on your BMX bike. Jumpers and classic BMX bikes usually prefer raw stopping power, so the opt to go with a single, linear pull braking system on the rear tire. This offers maximum gripping for fast stops. Freestyle BMX bikes usually need more control and less raw power, so they are normally equipped with U-brakes on both the front and rear tire of the brakes. U-brakes offer a more distributed stop, but are not as instantaneous as linear pull BMX brakes.

Tips & Warnings

  • First time BMX bike buyers may want to consider getting a 48-spoke freestyle bike. This is a nice middle ground between the various forms of BMX biking.
  • Pay attention to your biking habits. If you find that most of your time is spent on a particular activity, then your second bike can be one that is more customized for what you like to do.

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  • Photo Credit beelden zeggen meer, Flickr.com Creative Commons License
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