How do I Choose the Best Motorcycle Rims?

Dan Cavallari

The first step in choosing the best motorcycle rims is determining the correct size and function for your motorcycle. Motocross motorcycle rims, for example, will be different than sport racing rims in both size and construction. Many motocross motorcycle rims are spoked — that is, they feature several metal spokes that add tension to the rim and keep it round and true side to side. Sport racing rims are usually made from aluminum alloy and feature a cast design; the design may feature non-adjustable spokes, or may incorporate a solid disc. Choose the correct style and function, and choose the best material for your riding style.

Rims are made specifically for motorcycle racing.
Rims are made specifically for motorcycle racing.

Cost may be a determining factor in choosing the best motorcycle rims as well. Chrome wheels, for example, offer a classy, eye-catching look as well as durability, but these rims will come at a higher cost than other styles of wheels. Simple steel rims will be much cheaper, but they will also be lacking in visual appeal. Racing rims will generally be more expensive than all-purpose rims, since racing wheels are usually designed to be stronger and lighter than all purpose rims. Magnesium may be used to construct such rims, as this material can reduce weight while maintaining sufficient strength.

Sports racing motorcycle rims are often made of solid aluminum casting.
Sports racing motorcycle rims are often made of solid aluminum casting.

Custom motorcycle rims are by far the most expensive types of rims because they are made to the customer's specifications. They are usually one-off models, and a designer must come up with a concept for the wheels before their construction. They must then be constructed, usually using some sort of laser cutting machine or CNC machine operated by a professional. All this custom work will drive up the price of the rims, but it will also produce a unique and eye-catching look that will enhance the beauty and functionality of the motorcycle.

It is vital that you research the proper size of the motorcycle rims you are considering. Every motorcycle style requires a different size rim, and some motorcycles, such as choppers, feature rims that are much wider than normal. The width and height of a wheel will affect the motorcycle's steering significantly, and if the wrong size wheel is put on a motorcycle, the ride quality may suffer. Different rim sizes will also affect your tire choice. Motocross tires come in a few different sizes — both in terms of width and diameter — and they must be fit to the proper size rim. Sport racing rims, chopper rims, cruiser rims, and other types of motorcycle rims will also vary in height and diameter, so it is important to research what size tires you will need before you purchase a set of rims and ensure that a wide selection of tires are available for that size rim.

You might also Like

Readers Also Love

Discuss this Article

Post your comments
Forgot password?