So, you know which RF wheelset you think you want to buy but you’re not sure it's going to fit on your bike. We’ve put together this mini guide for buying wheels to help you out.

What’s Your Wheel Size?
Let’s Talk Axles
Front Wheels
Rear Wheels
Cassette Bodies

 

What’s Your Wheel Size?

Mountain bike tires and wheels come in predominately 3 sizes: 26”, 27.5” (or 650b), and 29”.


 The 29 is referring to the diameter, and 2.35 referring to the width. Some tires and rims will show the size by the metric equivalent, so a 29 x 2.5 could be displayed as 622 x 58.

  • If your tire/rim says 29, or 622, you need a 29” wheel.
  • If your tire /rim says 27.5 or 584, you need a 27.5" wheel.
  • If your tire/rim says 26" or 559, we unfortunately don’t offer this size wheel any longer. This is an older mountain bike standard that is no longer used on XC, Trail or DH bikes, though it's still used a bit for dirt jump or pump track style bikes. If you’re looking for a 26-inch wheel, your best bet would be to go to your local shop and get the rim replaced or look at other complete wheel options.

*Front and rear wheels are almost always the same size, check the other rim/tire if you’re in doubt.

 

Let’s Talk Axles

QR’s 

Traditionally, frames and forks worked with slotted dropouts where 9 mm (F)/10 mm (R) hub axles rested. A thin 5 mm quick release (QR) skewer then slid through the hollow axle to clamp everything in place. These are not as secure nor as stiff as “thru axles” and are now typically only found on older bikes.

If you have an older bike with QR’s and want to upgrade your bike, our wheels have tool-free swappable endcaps to change a 15 mm wheel to a 9 mm (F)/10 mm (R) and use your quick releases. (Endcaps sold separately.)

Thru Axles

These axles also go through a hollow hub axle but they’re larger in diameter and screw into closed dropouts. These axles are stronger and stiffer compared to QRs.

 

Front Wheels

Though it may feel daunting, the front wheel is easier to choose.

The most common size for Race Face front wheels is 15x110 Boost. Tool free endcaps (sold separately) can be used to adjust our front wheels to match the axle specs your bike requires.

 

Front Wheel Axles

AXLE DIAMETER

HUB WIDTH

TYPE

DESCRIPTION 

9mm

100mm

Quick Release (QR)

Older axle standard and not available in all RF complete wheels.

15mm

100mm

 

Older axle standard and not available in all RF complete wheels.

20mm

110mm

Oversized thru axles (Non Boost)              

Older axle standard for DH /gravity bikes up until 2018.

15mm

110mm

Boost - For Boost compatible forks. 

Current most popular MTB axle standard.

20mm

110mm

Boost 20 - Oversized thru axles

Found on newer DH bikes (2018 - onward), both 29 and 27.5" models


What do these numbers mean?

N.B. 100mm width is an older hub standard and does require a different hub that is not commonly available on new Race Face complete wheels. We would recommending building a custom wheel with a Race Face Vault 100mm front hub.

If your bike doesn’t fit this size of front wheels, you can also buy our rims and have them built up with a different hub.

 

Rear Wheels

Figuring out what rear wheel is right for your bike can be confusing because there are many more moving parts going on at the rear of the bike.

The most common rear hub sizing for Race Face wheels is 12x148 Boost but there are many option for you to choose from depending on what frame and drivetrain type you have. Tool free endcaps (sold separately) and different cassette bodies allow the rear wheel to accommodate multiple setups but it is best to get the correct wheel to start with.

 

Rear Wheel Axles

AXLE DIAMETER

HUB WIDTH

TYPE

DESCRIPTION

10mm

135mm

Quick Release (QR)

Old standard that is still used on some rim brake bikes.

12mm

142mm

Thru-axle

Old MTB standard that is now the most common axle type on road and gravel bikes.

12mm 150/157mm Non-Boost Older (Non Boost) axle standard for DH/gravity bikes.

12mm

148mm

Boost

Offers a stronger wheel build and is currently the most common mtb standard.

12mm

150mm/157mm

Super Boost

Current competing axle standard common on DH bikes and found on some trail bikes.


What do these numbers mean?

 

Cassette Bodies

Here’s a quick and easy way to decide which cassette body you need for both Shimano and SRAM builds.

Similar to your front wheel - if we don’t have your sizing, you can always build up a custom wheel with our rim and hub options.

 

That’s it!

You’re done. Click buy, then sit back and relax, knowing you made the right choice.

See you on the trails!

 

Still have questions? Contact us