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What Are BMX Frames?
The BMX bike frame is the biggest and most expensive part of your BMX setup. It has a great influence on your riding style and progression as a rider. Both freestyle and BMX race frames have the classic diamond shape, but you’ll find that race frames are longer to provide more stability.
With freestyle BMX bike frames, the goal is to have a durable, sturdy frame that can withstand the hard impacts. For this reason, they are usually made from steel. Race frames on the other hand are built to be as lightweight as possible and are typically constructed from aluminium.
What BMX Frame Size Should I Get?
You can get frames in a range of different sizes. The frame size you choose is ultimately a personal preference, but as a general rule, the taller you are, the bigger your frame should be.
Frame sizes are typically measured by the length of their top tube. In freestyle frames, this measure is expressed in inches. When it comes to race BMX frames, you will see they are divided up into “frame names” starting with Mini and going all the way up to Pro XXXXL.
Along with the top tube length, the headtube angle is another detail to consider that can affect the overall feel of the bike. Having a steeper angle will bring the front wheel closer, making it easier to perform front-end tricks. A mellower angle means that the wheel is further away, offering more control at high speeds. If you don’t really know yet what you prefer, just go for the industry standard, between 74° and 76°, for a neutral setting.
What Is the BMX Chainstay?
The BMX chainstay is the length measured from the centre of the bottom bracket to the centre of the rear axle. The latter can be fully inserted in the rear dropout (slammed, the shortest chainstay possible) or to the middle of the dropout (centre). The chainstay is an important aspect of your frame and impacts your bike’s handling. Chainstay lengths typically vary between 12 and 14 inches.
A shorter chainstay is preferred by park and street riders who seek a more responsive setup, so they can perform fast spins and sharp turns. Trail riders prefer a longer rear end as it provides more stability and control.
If the talk of chainstays has got you dreaming about a new chain, take a look at our BMX Chains to see if something catches your eye.