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Bicycle Tyre Basics

Updated: Dec 11, 2021


Below are some basic pointers that will help you when looking to buy new tyres for your bike.


Basic Info

A diagram showing technical terms for a bicycle tyres design features
[1] - Basic Nomenclature For A Tyres Design Features

Tyre Tread

The tyre tread is the portion of the tyre that will interface with the ground. Treads coming in a variety of different shapes, sizes and compounds depending on what the intended use for the tyre is.

Tyre Bead

The tyre bead is the inner most circumference of the tyre which will interface with the rim of your wheel. This is an important feature that ensures the integrity of the tyre wheel interface and for a tubeless setup it ensures an air tight seal.


Tyre Sizing

A diagram showing the different dimensions of a bicycle tyre
[2] - Nomenclature Of Different Tyre Dimensions

Tyre Width

The tyre width is the dimension indicating how wide the tyre will be. This is important to consider in context with the width of your rim and will also influence the drag experience when pedalling.

Tyre Profile

The tyre profile is essentially the height of tyre.

Tyre Diameter

The tyre diameter is the dimension of the inner circumference of the tyre. This much match your wheel set. i.e there are separate sizes to fit 26", 27.5" and 29".

Sizing Labels

The sizing label is a standard format used to show a tyres dimensions. This can normally be found on the side wall of your tyre.

Normally the size is denoted as Diameter X Width

i.e. 29 X 2.3 (Meaning to fit a 29 inch rim and is 2.3 inches wide).

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