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wheel info

Wheel Sizes and Tire info:

So what are the advantages and disadvantages of different sized wheels?

Well, the smaller the wheel the more maneuverable the scooter can be. The smaller wheel has less of a gyroscopic effect making it somewhat easier to turn (though this also depends a lot on steering geometry). So in general, scooters are more maneuverable than motorcycles (which have larger wheels). The converse of this is that larger wheels may give better stability at speed.

The downside of smaller wheels is that they don't roll over obstructions in the road as well. Just think of a pothole in the road. If it's a large hole and a small wheel, the wheel could fall into it! Even if it's a raised obstruction like a tree branch or a curb, a larger wheel will roll over it with less effort than a small wheel. That's one reason why off-road trucks often have monster wheels. When you're driving over rocks a big wheel makes life easier. Similarly, if you're riding over roads filled with potholes (for example New York City!), you'll value larger wheels.

While a few scooters have 16" wheels (e.g. MC_X1507) and a few have 10" wheels (e.g. MC-U1504), most scooters have a 12" or 13" wheel which is a reasonable compromise between maneuverability and stability.

Scooter tires come in all sizes of course, with a typical 13" wheel scooter tire having a designation something like "130/60-13". The "13" refers to the wheel rim diameter. The "130/60" part indicates that the width of the tread is 130mm (5.1") and that the tire has an aspect ratio of 0.60 (or 60%), which means that the sidewall height is 60% of the width of the tire. Some tires are designed for front wheel use, some for rear wheel use and some can be used on either wheel. Though most tires today are tubeless, there may still be a few tires which require an inner tube, especially on older scooters.

The tread pattern may be directional, meaning that it has to be mounted the correct way around to perform properly and there should be an arrow on the sidewall which shows which way the tire should rotate. You may also see a speed designation on some tires between the "130/60" and "13". This is a letter which runs from "J" to "Y". "J" indicates the tire is safe to use up to 62mph, "L" is up to 75mph, "N" is up to 87mph, "P" is up to 93mph and "S" is up to 103mph. You probably won't be going any faster than that on a scooter. However there is a "W" designation shows the tire is safe up to 168mph. As far as I know there are no "W" rated scooter tires! Most scooter tires will be priced in the $55-$85 region.