How to Remove and Install Your Wheels
Demonstrates how to release brake cables and operate front and rear quick release axles.
After last week’s flat repair tutorial, I received a lot of comments from people who thought I should’ve included wheel removal and installation instructions. This tutorial will cover the removal and installation of both front and rear quick release wheels.
Remove Front Wheel
When removing the front wheel, the first step is to disconnect your brake. Most brakes will have a simple mechanism that allows you to unhook the cable without any tools. If you cannot easily disconnect the cable you can always let some air out of the tire until it clears your brake pads. Now pull back on the quick release lever and with your other hand on the cap, spin the lever counter-clockwise a few times until your wheel comes free.
Quick Release Components
- The lever tightens the skewer, and usually has the words ‘Close’ or ‘Open’ written on either side.
- The skewer rod runs through the hollow axle and is threaded at one end.
- The cap threads on the skewer and acts as a nut, holding your wheel in place.
- The two springs should always be facing narrow end inward, on the outside of your frame or fork. The springs are only designed to provide clearance while removing and installing your wheel.
Install Front Wheel
You should always remember to apply a thin layer of grease along the entire length of your skewer rod.
When installing the front wheel, simply slide the axle evenly up into the fork dropouts, with the quick release lever on the left side of your bike. Holding the cap with one hand, spin the lever clockwise, making sure the side marked ‘Open’ is facing outwards. When tightening the lever, it should meet resistance at about the halfway point, with the lever pointing straight out. Now tighten the lever all the way down.
When the lever is tight, check to make sure it says ‘Close’ on the outside surface. I like to position the lever so that it is tucked in close alignment in front of the left fork blade. This gives you something to grip while tightening and loosening the lever.
Re-attach your front brake and check to make sure the pads are lined up correctly with the rim.
Remove Rear Wheel
Removal and installation of the rear wheel has a few extra steps because of the gear cluster. Just like the front wheel, you’ll need to release the rear brake by unhooking the cable or deflating the tire. Next, adjust your rear shifter until the chain is on the smallest sprocket. Then loosen the quick release lever and carefully removed the wheel.
Install Rear Wheel
To re-install the rear wheel, first place the chain back onto the smallest sprocket, and then slide the axle evenly up into the rear dropouts. Tighten the quick release lever the same way as the front wheel, with the lever on the left side of the bike. Make sure the lever is safely tucked in between both of the left chain stays. Re-connect your rear brake and once again check to make sure the pads are lined up correctly with the rim.
- Jim Langley: Bicycle Quick Releases Explained
- Sheldon Brown: Quick Release Skewers
- Bicycle Torque Specifications
- Park Tool PCS-9 Repair Stand
- Park Tool PCS-4 Repair Stand
- Park Tool SK-3 Starter Mechanic Tool Kit
- Park Tool PK-3 Professional Tool Kit
Discuss this topic in the Bicycle Repairs and Mechanics Forum
Has anyone used this for pedals and/ or bottom bracket? Is it any good? I have sounds coming from pedals & BB. 20210528_174952.jpg (Size: 37.76 KB / Downloads: 35) ...Read more
I was hoping to buy a Centaur Power Torque crank for my GT Transeo 5.0 build. The shell is 73mm though and I got a message back from them yesterday stating none of their cranks will fit this size Bottom Bracket shell. Be aware—as some retailers list that it is 68/73mm. ezgif-3-3e4fd7bb285f.png (Size: 88.74 KB / Downloads: 8) ...Read more
Hi guys! I have a used 2007 Fuji Roubaix and it has been creaking/clicking when I'm putting a heavier load on it (could be high or low gear/any gear,) but as long as I'm pedalling really hard (straining on the pedals) it's pretty pronounced from the middle of the bike by the peddles, straight down under the seat. I think it's probably the bottom bracket that's dried out, because I had the peddles...Read more
Just wondering about the possibility of upgrading only the front brake of an Apex 1 mechanical grupo to hydraulic. I figure the front brake does way more and it would save a ton of $$. What I'm wondering about is if the left hydraulic brake lever/hood would have a different shape compared to the mechanical brake right shifter. Anyone know exactly how different they are and if it would f...Read more
Hey. I recently built a gravel bike out of an old mtb and it has been going amazing for the first 200km. Today out of nowhere I noticed It was pulling to my right when I was braking particularly with the front brake. It's a cantilever braking system and I am running 42mm tires on a 700c wheelset. It's a steel frame and forks look fine (at leaset true to the eye). I did tighten the headset befor...Read more
So i have bent my drive side crank on my Devinci Kobain 2020 with a SAMOX 170 B148 30T crankset and SAMOX PF BB92 bottom bracket. Will my BB be compatible with shimano crankset and can I replace only my driveside crankarm? I attatched some images that may help 20210612_221824.jpg (Size: 42.25 KB / Downloads: 5) 20210612_221737.jpg (Size: 45.18 KB / Downloads: 5) ...Read more
So I'm repairing a bike that's equipped with Shimano "Light Action" front derailleurs. It looks to me like the gear shifter has 10 settings from low to high. But the front derailed has 3 gears like a regular bike. Any position other than 1, 5 or 10 on the handle and it just rattles and skips. Am I missing something? Thanks in advance....Read more
Long story short. I have a road bike that suddenly makes noise when I put pressure on the pedals. Doesn't matter if I sit or stand or if I keep my hand on the wheel or not. It's there. And become worse when more pressure is applied. Man I tried everything from front to back. I greased the front wheel plus the quick release. The fork bearings I maintanced a month ago. but did it just for sake of...Read more
Recently bought a new CAAD 13 and found that sticky metal plate in packaging with spare parts/bolts. Wondered what it was, searched the internet. Found Shimano manuals which state it's mandatory to use this one if bolt is touching the frame of a bike. CAAD 13 has front derailleur mounting point welded to its frame so actually now support bolt is screwed into painted aluminum surface with glossy fi...Read more
Hello everybody! Im new to the forum and I think bikes are what make people happy . Anyways im currently converging my panasonic sport 1000 to 700c. Ask me why im just dumb haha, love the frame for some odd reason but eventually wanna get a new frame. Currently on the bike I have a full tiagra groupset (besides brakes, have longer arm brakes) the only problem i am having is with the holes for t...Read more
A friend who often stops over to go for a ride showed up tonight with another guy I hadn't seen in years who just bought a new bike. It was a full suspension Mongoose from Walmart. They asked me to adjust the derailleurs and brakes. It had V-brakes and the arms were stamped steel. They flexed so much I couldn't get them to skid the wheels without rubbing the out of true wheels. I finally found a c...Read more
So I'm finishing up a build on a 90's GT Outpost Trail. I took the set from 7 speed up to 10 speed. I got a Zee rear derailleur and a SLX iSpec B Shifter. So I get into tuning the derailleur, and at first I can't get it to shift down into the lowest gear. I realize the integrated hanger probably needs to be pulled out and realigned. So I take the wheel off, do some fine adjusting, and sure enou...Read more
Hello, I need to replace my speed shift, the old one got broke, but my bike is quite old, this type of shifter is't available anymore, but can't i simply order a speed shifter with the same gear posisions that also has a cable to the derailleur ? I'm dutch, I hope my english is understandable, Thanks in advance, Laurens...Read more
Does anyone know the thread pitch for FSA Modular cranks? I had an issue with a faulty installation using a Cannondale Spider. Despite using the same direct mount profile, the spider was not contoured to the crank properly. This caused the lockring to jump crossthreaded during the fastening process, and stripped out the lockring thread. Note this incompatibility for Cannondale spiders to preven...Read more
I have a Specialized Sirrus 6.0 on order. It comes with tubeless tires. I’m thinking of having my dealer pull the tubes during setup and put in the sealant. Other than not worrying about flats, are the tubeless setups lighter and what’s the negatives?...Read more