Toledo Bicycle Components

It is important for cyclists to have an understanding of their bike in order to conduct themselves safely on the road. An experienced bike accident attorney can help people better understand the relevance of Toledo bicycle components in an injury case.

The foundation for all the controls are located at the front end of a bicycle. It makes up the means for steering and leverage and is where braking and gear selection is located. Many other accessories are located on the steering system, including horns/bells, lights, and mirrors.

Like the frame, the handlebars and fork assembly must undergo and pass stringent testing. Handlebars must allow for comfortable and safe control of the bike. While most handlebars are adjustable, federal regulations require that they are to be located no more than 16” above the bike seat and be inserted into the stem at a minimum depth clearly marked on the bike.

Bike Drivetrain

The transmission of a bike is where your energy is converted to speed. There are numerous Toledo bicycle components that are genetically part of a bike’s drivetrain. They include the sprockets, chains, derailleurs, and pedals.

Regulations require that pedals should generally have a tread on the top and bottom and be equipped with reflectors. Chains are required to be able to operate over sprockets without catching or binding.

Chains are also required to be guarded on most single-speed bikes. Multi-speed bikes have derailleurs that allow a rider to “de-rail” the chain and shift it to another gear.  Derailleurs are also required to be guarded.

Role of Bicycle Wheels

Important Toledo bicycle components include the wheel assemblies. The wheel assembly of a bike is comprised of the hub, rim, spokes, and tire. Bike hubs are the center part of the bicycle wheel. They generally consist of an axle, bearings, and a hub shell. The rim is the outer hoop of a bike wheel that interlocks with the tire to hold the inner tube in place. There are many different types of rims, but most are metal and all must meet minimum government strength requirements.

The spokes of a wheel basically provide support to the rider. While spokes are also constructed from a variety of materials, it generally holds true that the more spokes a wheel has, the stronger it is. There are a variety of tire options for bikes. Road bikes generally have smooth tires, while mountain bikes have knobs for traction. There are all sorts of tread patterns in between. The federal government requires that all tires have the recommended inflation pressure molded onto the sidewall of the tire. Proper tire inflation is an important safety item.

Importance of Suspension Systems

Many bikes are equipped with a front and/or rear suspension system. Bikes with only a front suspension are often referred to as “hardtail” bikes. A front suspension bike helps to alleviate rider fatigue. However, riders must ensure they have a suspension that is adequate for their weight. Otherwise, a heavier rider could bottom out the suspension which could throw the rider’s weight too far forward during braking resulting in a crash.

What are Common Types of Bike Suspensions?

A bike that uses a front suspension, as well as a rear shock/coil, is referred to as a full suspension bike. Full suspension bikes, while heavier than hardtails, help absorb more of the impact of rougher terrain. The braking system on a bike is extremely important for safety.

There are many different types of brakes, but generally, most brake types fall into one of three distinct categories:

  • Rim Brakes: Rim brakes work by clamping down on the metal rim, slowing, or stopping its rotation
  • Disc Brakes: Disc brakes consist of a metal disc attached to the wheel that rotates with the wheel. Brake calipers squeeze the disc, slowing or stopping its rotation
  • Drum Brakes: Drum brakes work by applying braking pressure against the inside surface of the wheel hub. The footbrake or back pedal brake is a type of drum brake

Much like motor vehicles, federal regulations set out maximum stopping distances for bikes. Generally, the manufacturers are required to ensure that their braking systems can bring a 150-pound cyclist to a stop within 15 feet from the point of braking.

Defining Reflectors

Other than certain youth bikes designed strictly for sidewalk use, bikes are required by federal regulations to be equipped with reflective devices that illuminate under a motor vehicle’s headlights. Reflectors should be located on the pedals, wheels, and on the front and rear of the bike. Red reflectors on the back of a bike are required to be visible for up to 600 feet of vehicles with headlamps on.

Reflectors only work under specific conditions. While reflectors should be situated to pick up a driver’s headlights, that is not always the case. Weather conditions can obscure the reflector or a driver may have a headlight out. Ohio law requires not only reflectors, but also that bikes be equipped with lights if riding at night. There are specific laws relating to Toledo bike components, bikes must have a white light that is visible at least 500 feet to the front and 300 feet to the sides.


Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC