How to Customize Your Own BMX Bike

Written by andrea julian
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How to Customize Your Own BMX Bike
If you want to your bike to do tricks, you need to trick it out. (bmx image by claude wolf from Fotolia.com)

Customising your BMX bike for your specific riding style can enhance your performance and allow you to do more complicated tricks. There are three basic types of BMX bikes out there: jump/dirt bikes, racing bikes and freestyle/stunt bikes. No matter what style you ride, you will want to beef up your bike to handle bunny hops, ride half-pipes, get airborne, spin 360s, and ride fakie. It's all about being able to manoeuvre and perform with these custom built bikes.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • • A BMX bike
  • • An understanding of how you will use the bike
  • • Socket set
  • • Allen wrenches
  • • Crescent wrench
  • • Custom BMX bike parts such as a custom frame, 3 piece sealed cranks, and custom rims and tires

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Decide on how you're going to customise your bike. Find out which companies offer the most compatible parts for your style of BMX. The main parts you will want to replace no matter what style you ride are the frame, the rims, and the cranks. BMX bike companies offer speciality parts for each style of riding, so you will want to do some research to find out the parts that will give you the best performance.

  2. 2

    Set your budget to get a better understanding of just how custom you can get with the money you have for parts and work. Customising your BMX bike isn´t cheap, but there are lower levels and higher levels of customisation you can go with.

  3. 3

    Start with the frame. Some of the basic frames are high tensile steel, chromoly (chromium-molybdenum steel) and reinforced aluminium. Custom bike frames will cost anywhere from £130 to £1,300 depending on what you want. Steel frames are sturdy and economical. Aluminium frames are lightweight and more expensive. Most basic dirt jumping and freestyle frames are made of chromoly steel while race bike frames are made of aluminium. More advanced dirt jumper and freestyle bike frames can be made of aluminium, but this is not recommended for beginners because these frames are expensive and damage more easily.

  4. 4

    Next add the three-piece sealed cranks. They come in a variety of sizes, styles, and colours specific for your personal taste or size. Things to look for are the strength, weight, girth, and ease of maintenance. Custom racing bikes usually use aluminium or titanium cranks. For "trick" bikes, machined aluminium or chrome cranks work well. The most important factor in deciding which kind of custom cranks to get is your body size. They need to be customised for your weight, height, and style.

  5. 5

    Add new rims to your bike. If you are riding freestyle, you will want to get mag rims or 48-spoke rims. Racing bikes will benefit from a light weight 32-spoke aluminium rim. You will need very strong rims if you are doing a lot of jumping with your BMX bike. Try either 48-spoke rims or rims that have 36 heavy-duty 13 gauge spokes.

  6. 6

    Put custom tires on your custom rims. For ramps, you will want slick tires, for tricks, get knobby tread tires. Freestyle BMX bikes work best with a multi-tread.

  7. 7

    Start riding your new tricked-out BMX bike and see how much better the performance is now that you have added a custom frame, rims, and cranks.

Tips and warnings

  • Aluminium has a tendency to scratch and mark easily, making it a good choice for pros. Beginners are better off with a sturdier and cheaper material that will resist falls and mishaps.
  • When riding your new customised tricked-out BMX bike try not to be dazzled by all the shinny new parts and crash. Too much chrome can blind you in direct sunlight.

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