Mountain bike (MTB) can mean almost any kind of off-road bicycle. Wide knobby tires, flat handlebars, maybe shocks, probably a sturdy frame...

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34
votes
12answers
7k views

What type of tires can prevent goatheads?

We have a lot of goatheads1 in our area, and they have a tendency to do something like this to bike tires: Unfortunately, I ride a road bike (specifically a Kona Dew), so I have much smaller, ...
31
votes
11answers
20k views

Can I use a Presta tube in a Schrader rim?

I keep losing pressure in my tires, and among other things, I'm looking at the valves in the tubes. It's an old mountain bike with 26 inch tires. Can I use Presta tubes on rims drilled for Schrader ...
25
votes
2answers
8k views

What's the difference between All-Mountain, Cross Country, Freeride, Downhill bikes?

I'm somewhat new to the world of mountain bikes and I'm seeing various terms to describe different bikes. What is the difference between all-mountain, cross country, freeride, and downhill? Are they ...
25
votes
4answers
1k views

Why are tubeless tyres popular in mountain biking?

I've noticed that a lot of people use or promote tubeless tyres for mountain biking. Why is this? It seems a lot of hassle to get a special rim conversion kit and goop to put in the tyre. As far as I ...
23
votes
7answers
29k views

Which way do I orient my bike tire's tread direction? and why?

I have a mountain bike tire that has stamped on the side something like: <----------front rear-------------> Which seems like a pretty clear indication that the tire should be oriented in one ...
19
votes
15answers
55k views

Converting a MTB to a Road Bike

I just bought a new MTB and am planning to change my previous MTB into a Road Bike. How do I do it? What kind of parts do I need to change or add or remove? I am not looking to for a full ...
18
votes
8answers
5k views

How do I prevent my pants from getting caught into the bike gears

I have the unfortunate habit of always getting my jean pants stuck in my gears and end up with a nice rip on the seams. I've used those velcro braces to keep the bottom of my pants leg close to my ...
18
votes
6answers
749 views

How deep does snow have to be before it becomes unrideable?

I was going to go for an off road ride in the snow this weekend but I chickened out. Partly because it was cold but mainly because I have no experience riding in snow and wasn't sure whether I would ...
18
votes
5answers
29k views

How do I separate disc brake pads after accidentally pulling the front brake while the wheel is off?

The title says it all really. I've taken the front wheel off my mountain bike to get it in my car. When I get it out and try and put the front wheel back on the space between the brake pads isn't wide ...
18
votes
5answers
2k views

How do I cycle up steep rocky ground?

When mountain biking with my friends, we sometimes end up tackling a severe up hill over rocky ground. I usually find I end up putting a foot down first. I'm not sure what's going wrong. Sometimes my ...
17
votes
7answers
9k views

What pressure should I run my Mountain Bike tires at?

Should I run my mountain bike at the suggested PSI/Bar on the tire/rim? Or should I run it a bit lower? Or is it more about conditions? Should I run lower if I am running on softer terrain?
17
votes
8answers
5k views

What are the differences (and their practical implications) between a 29" mountain bike and a cyclocross bicycle?

I am considering the purchase of a bicycle for riding off road, and have heard a lot of buzz about 29" mountain bikes. However, I am not particularly interested in technical riding - although I would ...
16
votes
5answers
2k views

What type of brakes are best for mountain bike racing?

Disc brakes are more expensive than v-brakes, but in a heavy rain they will break down. V-Brakes are becoming harder to find, but they're much easier to maintain and don't break down as easily. What ...
16
votes
7answers
10k views

How to get the tyre back on to the rim easily?

What is the best/easiest way to get the tyre back on to a rim after removing it to fix a puncture for example? Some tyres can be really hard to get back on to the rim. I don't like using the tyre ...
16
votes
4answers
3k views

How bad is road salt for my bike?

I took my mountain bike out yesterday in the snow. Did some hills around town, riding through slush and puddles, and all sort of dirt/mush/ice/snow. I gave the bike a pretty good wipe-down after the ...
16
votes
1answer
3k views

What features of a mountain bike's geometry gives it different characteristics?

When you see descriptions of mountain bikes they are usually described as XC, trail, enduro etc. and have different geometries based on what sort of category they fall into. What are the defining ...
15
votes
6answers
3k views

Where is the best place to carry water (back or bike)?

Where do you prefer to carry your water? I find when I am mountain biking I prefer to carry my water in a hydration pack on my back (easier to rock the bike). When road biking on flat ground I ...
14
votes
7answers
16k views

Front suspension or full suspension mountain bike

I'm considering buying a mountain bike and have narrowed it down to two models (make and model aren't important for this question). One model is a full suspension bike (front and back), the other is ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

Is there something particularly wrong with exclusively riding a mountain bike in a city setting?

I live in Davis, and I ride bikes simply for commuting around the university and around town. My last bike is a hand-me-down from my sister's friend over 6 years ago; it's pretty much on it's last ...
14
votes
7answers
3k views

How can a beginner cyclist build up power?

I am a 44-year-old guy, 250 lbs (yes, overweight). I have not been on a bike in over 15 years. I just picked up a 12 Trek Marlin (Gary Fisher Collection) this weekend, and after riding for about 2 ...
14
votes
1answer
237 views

Pass in the Alps that can be crossed by mountain bike?

I'm looking for a pass in the Alps that I can cross with my mountain bike. I know that if there's a road, I could just use it, but my question is a little bit more special. I'm looking for a pass ...
14
votes
3answers
393 views

Should I fear cows?

I know that sounds like a silly question, but I really need an advise. Recently a herd appeared at my local trail. Often they block the trail, and I (being a city boy) don't know how to behave toward ...
14
votes
4answers
242 views

Pre ride checks

What checks should you perform before setting off to ensure that your bike is safe to ride? I'm more interesting in mountain bikes rather ride road bikes but I guess that most checks are applicable ...
13
votes
2answers
764 views

Do helmets really lose their quality with time even if kept in package?

A friend of mine, who works as a sales manager in a good bike shop advised me to never buy a helmet that is older than couple of years, and the best thing to do is to buy the current model line, when ...
12
votes
5answers
822 views

Am I going to get injured mountain biking if I don't have rear suspension?

On the several occasions I've gone mountain biking, I was using a nice borrowed bike with full suspension and it felt nice. I'm told that rear suspension, though nice, is not necessarily a must-have. ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

Why do I always get punctures in my rear wheel?

I get probably five times as many punctures in my rear wheel as opposed to my front wheel. I run a good pressure and don't get obvious pinch flats. Does anyone have a logical reason why this could ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

do I need to change my disc if the brake pads got oil on them

In trying to change the brake pads on my mountain bike, I managed to get oil on my new pads and empty out all the brake fluid, and consequently also get some oil on the disc. I took the bike to the ...
12
votes
3answers
809 views

Bike tires need air every ride…is this normal?

I ride my bike maybe once a week at most. I need to add air to the tires every time to bring it up to the right pressure. (I ride a mountain bike and I put about 45 - 50 PSI's into the tires.) Is ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Cycling on snow in extreme freezing conditions: will my bike break?

I plan on riding my Merida Matts 40-D in mountains like these: The temperatures are usually around -20 °C and I was wondering whether anything can break on my bike due to the freezing conditions. ...
11
votes
6answers
2k views

Mountain Bike on Paved Roads

I'm an occasional biker. I bought a mountain bike (nothing fancy) with the idea that I might use it off-road or on mountain trails (of which there are many here in Calgary). However, since I've bought ...
11
votes
1answer
4k views

What effect does changing the stem length have on my bikes handling

I'm finding that when jumping my mountain bike seems to be very nose heavy no matter how far back my saddle is. What effect will moving to a shorter stem length have? My bike, a Boardman FS-PRO came ...
11
votes
4answers
22k views

What is the “preload” setting on the front fork suspension?

I've made a photo of the actual "thing" as I find it very difficult to explain otherwise: I'm wondering what this "thing" sets and how it actually works. So, what is "preload" and what happens when ...
10
votes
3answers
567 views

Making a very sharp turn by pivoting on your front wheel?

There is that cool maneuver that lets you do a very sharp turn (90° or even 180°) in very tight situations, like descending two flights of staircases (in town) or narrow and very steep winding trails ...
10
votes
4answers
7k views

What is the purpose of suspension lockout?

I'm trying to decide which 29'er bike I want to purchase and one of them has lockout. I know what lockout does but I'm not sure what it is used for and if I will need it. Thanks
10
votes
6answers
4k views

Bailing out with SPD pedals on a mountain bike

I got a new mountain bike a year ago, with SPD pedals. I'm OK with these on a road bike (that I don't normally crash), but on a mountain bike when I crash I usually can't jump off the bike like I used ...
10
votes
3answers
864 views

Do mountain bikers yield to hikers?

I've seen rules and graphics online that basically say that bikers are to yield to hikers. Is this the generally accepted rule, and if so, how do you define "yield"? Background The areas I normally ...
10
votes
3answers
3k views

I often get a sore neck when riding. How can I adjust the setup of my bike to help prevent this happening?

Quite often if I'm riding for longer than about an hour I get a sore neck. I assume that I can make some adjustment to my mountain bike to help prevent or reduce the soreness, but I don't know what. ...
10
votes
4answers
17k views

How to tell when to replace cassette?

How do you tell when it's time to replace a cassette? Are there any specific wear patterns on the teeth to watch for or symptoms specific to a worn-out cassette?
9
votes
4answers
1k views

What are the disadvantages of more suspension travel?

Having some suspension travel is always nice, but what disadvantages are there for the bikes handling as the travel increases? This question applies to both to full and front suspension bikes.
9
votes
2answers
5k views

Hydraulic Disc Brakes Maintenance

I have Hayes Nine hydraulic disc brakes on my mountain bike. I have recently replaced the brake pads and after that it seems that the pads are almost touching the rotor. How can I adjust it? I have ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the benefit of a larger disc rotor?

What real benefit does having a larger rotor give to braking performance? Additionally is my assumption correct that you callipers don't actually change in size, just the rotor and the adapter need ...
9
votes
2answers
3k views

Can I convert a road frame to a mountain bike?

Some years ago, I picked up a Cannondale R3000 and moved all the components to my current bike as an exercise in bike building, never repeated (in fairness, the Cannondale fit me a little better but ...
9
votes
2answers
4k views

Cannondale Lefty DLR Ti Fork Rebuild/Maintenance

I have a mountain bike with a 2003 Cannondale Lefty DLR Ti fork. As I've been riding the bike this season, I've noticed that the fork is behaving strangely. It doesn't seem to lockout fully and it is ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

What causes my front wheel to twist when I apply the brake?

I have a 2005 Specialized HardRock Sport with disc brakes. When I'm slowing down from a reasonable speed with the front brake, I noticed that the top of the front wheel appears to deflect sideways ...
8
votes
6answers
4k views

Kickstands and mountain bikes

Why is it that many people often recommend against using kickstands on mountain bikes? Does it have something to do with offroad riding (perhaps something could get caught there?), or are kickstands a ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

What skills/drills should I learn to descend faster and more confidently? (for mountain biking)

I've ridden road and mountain bikes for years, and this is my first year riding as a part of a team (and actually doing races). I've been stuck at nearly the same level of skill when descending and ...
8
votes
4answers
881 views

Skate shoes vs mtb shoes?

It's an old argue on forums, still cant get it. What is the (real, that worth the money and time for ordering from abroad, in my case) difference, let's say between Five Ten FreeRider shoes and some ...
8
votes
7answers
14k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of riding a smaller Mountain Bike frame?

I am 182cm (5' 11'') tall and am looking into buying a new frame for my mountain bike. Right now i have a 19'' frame and i found a good deal on a 17'' frame. The guy from the shop told me that it ...
8
votes
2answers
579 views

What are the main improvements in suspension technology in the last 10 years?

How much has bicycle suspension technology evolved in the last 10 years? I am thinking about both rear and front suspension. What have been the major breakthroughs that all bicycle manufacturers are ...
8
votes
4answers
3k views

Trainers & Mountain Bikes

Can I use a trainer with a mountain bike? I want to the same bike off road at weekends so I don't really want to change the setup of the bike.