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Old 03-02-10, 11:57 PM   #1
slipknot0129
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Can you put 26 wheels on a 700c bike frame?

Can you put 26 inch wheels on a 700c bike frame? I might want to put 26 inch wheels with knobby mountain bike wheels on my cannondale touring bike when it gets muddy. Does big knobby tires go any faster in thick mud compared to skinny tires? My skinny tires go really slow in the thick mud but fast in the truck tracks.
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Old 03-03-10, 12:56 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by slipknot0129 View Post
Can you put 26 inch wheels on a 700c bike frame? I might want to put 26 inch wheels with knobby mountain bike wheels on my cannondale touring bike when it gets muddy. Does big knobby tires go any faster in thick mud compared to skinny tires? My skinny tires go really slow in the thick mud but fast in the truck tracks.
Diameter-wise, fat 26" tires end up being about the same as narrow 700C tires. However, they'll probably be too fat to fit between the chainstay or the fork blads, plus you'll need longer reach brakes. You can get around this by putting on skinny 26" tires, but that will lower your cranks to the point they'll hit the ground too easily in turns. A 650B size tire might be a good compromise, but they're relatively rare: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/650b.html
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Old 03-03-10, 06:46 AM   #3
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Will 38x700C knobbies fit? They're not fat by mountain bike standards, but they'll be an improvement over skinny road tires. In the mud, at least.
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Old 03-03-10, 08:01 AM   #4
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Your best bet is to add bigger (knobbier?) tires to your existing rims because as Jeff mentioned, smaller rims will lower your cranks creating a significant strike risk. If the bike is a touring model it likely has pretty generous clearances for larger tires as well as fenders. You'll need to measure what kind of clearances you have with the seat and chain stays as well as the fork crown and brakes to see what size tires will fit.

A more important question might be, Why are you riding a touring bike with road tires through deep mud in the first place? If your rides consist of a lot of on road and off road riding you might consider a cyclocross style bike as it is made to handle both pavement and unpaved surfaces.
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Old 03-03-10, 11:08 AM   #5
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Oh I forgot about the brakes not working and the components. I got some clearance for some bigger tires and my current tires are 700c 28. I just went through a mud part to see how bad the bikes slows. Usually on my road the mud is pushed to the side and its smooth in the middle when it rains.
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Old 03-03-10, 12:10 PM   #6
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I understand that your cassette and RD should/might work but you'd need disc brakes since the rim brakes will no longer work.
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Old 03-03-10, 12:16 PM   #7
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The C-dale touring bikes have plenty of clearance - why not run some 700C cyclocross knobbies? I'm running 700X35 Avocet Cross tires on my T700 and could probably go wider.

Certainly cheaper than swapping brakes and rims.
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Old 03-06-10, 01:51 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by slipknot0129 View Post
Can you put 26 inch wheels on a 700c bike frame? I might want to put 26 inch wheels with knobby mountain bike wheels on my cannondale touring bike when it gets muddy. Does big knobby tires go any faster in thick mud compared to skinny tires? My skinny tires go really slow in the thick mud but fast in the truck tracks.
There are tons of 700c tires available to fit your needs. The only real constraint is your frame clearances.

I have 700x42 knobblies on my Cross-Check



You might find a Treking / Touring tire give you the tread you want

http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/SubCate..._200276_200327
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Old 05-17-12, 12:06 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by dobber View Post
There are tons of 700c tires available to fit your needs. The only real constraint is your frame clearances.

I have 700x42 knobblies on my Cross-Check



You might find a Treking / Touring tire give you the tread you want

http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/SubCate..._200276_200327
Hi,

I am trying to do the same in my benotto, I currently have 700c x23, but I need wider tires, I would like to know what size of rim did you use for those tires, because I imagine mine wouldn't fit wider tires.


Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-17-12, 01:27 PM   #10
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yes, it is possible to put mtb wheels on a bike designed for 700c wheels. you will have to pay attention to the width of the tires (28mm may be max) though. and a disc or coaster brake, or possibly a new fork, may be necessary.

despite what you might think, crank clearance problems, while turning, are not as much of an issue as one might think, inasmuch as most of us, at a early age, learned to habitually raise the inside crank on a turn. ascending curbs on the go is another story...

and if you have a coaster brake and hold your tongue right, you can use a pedal as a kickstand.

Last edited by hueyhoolihan; 05-17-12 at 01:32 PM.
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