What is a Clincher Wheel on a Bicycle?

What is a Clincher Wheel on a Bicycle?
Clincher wheels are so ubiquitous among recreational cyclists that even those who know how to change their own tires might not know there is any other bike wheel model. Their low cost and ease of maintenance makes them the standard wheel type for most riders.


Clincher wheels have retaining wires running along the inside edges of the wheel rim. The inner tube rests between the wires, while the tire itself is sandwiched between the wire and the rim.


Tubular Wheels

The alternative model for a bicycle tire is the tubular wheel. The tire and inner tube are stitched together into a single unit and then glued directly onto the wheel.

Who Uses Clincher Wheels

Clinchers are the most common wheel and tire set on the road. Tubular wheels and tires are more common among competitive cyclists.


The main advantage of the clincher wheel is that, as the inner tube and tire are separate, they can be easily and cheaply removed and either fixed or replaced. Tubular tires are not so easy to repair and it is usually cheaper to replace the entire unit than to try fixing it.


The wheels, tires and inner tubes for clinchers are heavier than their tubular counterparts. This is why competitive cyclists prefer tubular wheels.

Clincher Types

There are some variations on the clincher model, which are meant to give the wheel more grip on the tire and allow for a slightly higher tire pressure. These are called "hook" or "crochet" clinchers.


Article Written By Edwin Thomas

Edwin Thomas has been writing since 1997. His work has appeared in various online publications, including The Black Table, Proboxing-Fans and others. A travel blogger, editor and writer, Thomas has traveled from Argentina to Vietnam in pursuit of stories. He holds a Master of Arts in international affairs from American University.

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