A thru axle, also known as a through axle or thru-axle, is a type of wheel attachment system commonly used in bicycles. It provides a more secure and rigid connection between the wheel and the frame or fork compared to traditional quick-release skewers.
Unlike a quick-release skewer, which consists of a threaded rod that passes through the wheel hub and is secured by a lever, a thru axle is a solid axle that threads directly into the frame or fork. It typically has a larger diameter and is stiffer, which enhances the overall rigidity and stability of the wheel.
The thru axle system consists of three main components: the thru axle itself, a threaded insert in the frame or fork dropout, and a lever or tool used for tightening or releasing the axle. The axle is inserted through the hub of the wheel and threaded into the frame or fork, ensuring a snug fit. The threaded insert in the dropout provides the necessary threads for the axle to engage securely.
Thru axles offer several advantages over traditional quick-release skewers. They provide increased stiffness and rigidity, resulting in improved handling and more precise steering. This is particularly beneficial for off-road riding or applications that require enhanced stability and control. Thru axles also provide better wheel retention, reducing the chances of the wheel coming loose or shifting during aggressive maneuvers or rough terrains.
Furthermore, thru axles simplify wheel installation and removal. They often use a lever or tool to tighten or release the axle, making the process quick and convenient. This eliminates the need to unscrew and re-tighten a skewer, as with a traditional quick-release mechanism.
Thru axles come in various sizes and standards depending on the specific bicycle or vehicle model. Common sizes include 12mm and 15mm for mountain bikes and 12mm for road and gravel bikes. The thread pitch and axle length can also vary, depending on the manufacturer and the intended use.
Overall, thru axles provide a more secure and rigid wheel attachment system, offering improved performance, stability, and ease of use compared to traditional quick-release skewers. They have become increasingly popular in the cycling industry, especially for high-performance and off-road applications.
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