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Old 09-09-09, 03:13 PM   #1
wmcnick
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small wheels, big frame

is it possible to put 20 or 24 inch wheels on a road bike frame without changing the frame or fork? i know that the brake mounts would be useless and the clearance is changed, but i'm ok with that. is it easier, harder, possible, impossible to do it with a single speed or fixed gear?
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Old 09-09-09, 03:21 PM   #2
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is it possible to put 20 or 24 inch wheels on a road bike frame without changing the frame or fork? i know that the brake mounts would be useless and the clearance is changed, but i'm ok with that. is it easier, harder, possible, impossible to do it with a single speed or fixed gear?
Your bottom bracket would be very close to the ground. You would have better luck going from 26" (ERTO 559) to 24" (ERTO 520 or 507) than from 700c (ERTO 622). Going to a 20" wheel (ERTO 451 or 406) would be unwise.

If you want a small wheel bike, look for the mini velos -- Dahon makes the hammerhead -- or folding bikes.
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Old 09-09-09, 08:41 PM   #3
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You could possibly put shorter crank arms on it and help some.
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Old 09-09-09, 08:53 PM   #4
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Totally possible, as long as the hub width/spacing is similar. SS/FG hubs are usually narrower than geared hubs/dropouts.

You may have to put on shorter cranks due to having less bottom bracket clearance, definitely if you went from 700c to 20".
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Old 09-10-09, 11:40 AM   #5
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20" on a road bike frame is pretty much impossible without some frame modifications. As in, you can't get cranks short enough to be able to clear the ground.
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Old 09-10-09, 12:02 PM   #6
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If your chainring clears the ground, you can get cranks short enough to work.
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Old 09-10-09, 06:52 PM   #7
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If your chainring clears the ground, you can get cranks short enough to work.

That bike is a trailer queen though.
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Old 09-11-09, 07:04 AM   #8
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That bike is a trailer queen though.
C'mon, just because there aren't gear teeth all the way around the chainwheel?

Anyway, that shouldn't matter too much here in alt-bikes. If you want practicality, try the Utility Bike forum.
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Old 09-11-09, 11:10 AM   #9
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http://liverydesigngruppe.com/liveryblog/?p=188

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Old 09-13-09, 09:06 PM   #10
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Thats pretty neat.
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Old 09-24-09, 10:58 AM   #11
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I've slapped 24" wheels onto a old 27" road bike (about a 53-55cm frame) - it worked as long as you didn't lean into corners too much. I think the cranks were just 170s, nothing too long, but they'd strike the ground if you were in the wrong part of your pedal stroke as you turned.
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Old 10-09-09, 03:06 PM   #12
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everything is possible...
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Old 10-25-09, 12:44 PM   #13
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You want to build a mini velo? They're popular in Asia. Bikes with a normal frame having small wheels.
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Old 10-26-09, 12:45 AM   #14
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small wheels, big frame, short crank arms
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Old 10-26-09, 03:33 PM   #15
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I'd go with 165mm or even shorter cranks. You could put 20" wheels on it but then the crank needs to be proportionately shorter to avoid pedal strike when leaning on turns.
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Old 11-12-09, 01:30 AM   #16
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20" on a road bike frame is pretty much impossible without some frame modifications. As in, you can't get cranks short enough to be able to clear the ground.
Yeah, I once had a flat rear on a road bike, and a broken chain stay on a 20 inch rear recumbent. Got stranded at work one night when the last train home came 3 minutes early. Put the 20 on and pedal clear when going straight, but slightest lean resulted in pedal strike.

It should be harder on a fixie since you can't coast through a turn to keep from striking the ground.
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Old 11-12-09, 08:19 AM   #17
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funny I didn't hear anyone mention brakes
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Old 11-12-09, 12:14 PM   #18
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funny i didn't hear anyone mention brakes
coasta brakes!
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Old 11-14-09, 08:40 PM   #19
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you need bigger gears too.
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