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August 28, 2019 3 min read 1 Comment

Reinventing the Wheel

Wildcat’s R&D team is pretty relentless in their quest to build the best... with the release of the new Turbo wheel let us take a look back at how the Mini BMX wheel has evolved over the last few years, and why the new design is truly next level.

As we said in our last post, the very first Mini BMX's made didn’t have access to specialized parts or design and so relied upon donor parts from carts and kids bikes. These components just weren’t fit for purpose and often failed as a result.

Wheel design 1 - Circa 2011 / 12

The first assemblies used cart wheels which, when kept in-line under vertical loading are reasonably strong.

However this is not a real world application in Mini BMX, they simply were not designed to withstand the heavy lateral force placed upon them during serious riding. When landing spins, whips or rotating out of tricks they would often fail by collapsing sideways on the axle or buckling.

Some brands unfortunately still rely on this glorified cart wheel design today - 4 x hub-nuts and a star pattern hub on one side only which is fixed to the axle / hub assembly by a single, narrow weld point. The two split hub half's attach directly to this and offer very little insurance against lateral force failure. They also use a driver/freewheel from a kid’s bike, usually a 12t or 16t ratio which means gearing makes it difficult to generate enough speed for tricks. Wildcat’s 9t pro-driver when paired with 25t, 28t or 30t chainwheels offer the optimum pedal speed range for Mini BMX size.

Wildcat recognized early on that to follow their ethos of a ‘true BMX bloodline’ product range, they needed to ditch this design and take an entirely new approach to elevate the Mini BMX genre above a kids toy specification.

Cart style wheel - Wildcat Mini BMX

 

Wheel design 2. The High-tensile steel hub.

Wildcat’s R&D team developed a new wheel design in 2016, the hi-tensile heat treated steel hub seen on the majority of Wildcat Mini BMXs today. This is a Mini BMX specific design, and does a great job combating the lateral force exerted on the hub — even when used by larger humans! This is achieved by permanently fixing one side of the rim to the hub assembly using a reinforced, hidden weld / wedge design. Externally this is visible at the centre of the hub, seen as a bevel angling from the hub to the rim. Coupled with the removable side of the hub having a similar geometry, this design ensures a solid brace against lateral force from both sides.

Once assembled the hubs are then also heat treated to further strengthen. This process can sometimes warp the rim out of true but is 100% required to ensure maximum wheel strength above all else. The resulting wobble has been the bain of a few manufacturers using a heat treatment process and can become pronounced, so Wildcat also pushed to develop a method to straighten and balance post heat treatment. As a result this has been the most successful and strongest wheel design up until now. The finished hub is held together firmly with 5 x eye bolts, also making it reasonably easy to split the rim and slide off the removable side, in case a tire change or puncture repair is required.

The hi-ten pro wheel package offers proven performance and strength you can trust, at an affordable price point.

Hi-tensile wheel - Wildcat Mini BMX

 

Wheel design 3. Innovation and evolution.

Finally... enter the new benchmark and top end of Mini BMX wheel design. Wildcat truly has re-invented the wheel, seriously changing the Mini BMX game with the new patented Turbo design. The Turbo hub core is 100% aluminum forged and CNC tech (meaning each hub is individually machined to shape, not cast moulded or pressed from sheet metal) making it stronger, truer and far lighter than anything else on the market. Due to the unique design that loads force more evenly across the axle instead of focusing load on one point, it has proven to withstand up to 5 times the lateral force of even the Hi-tensile, heat treated wheel design.

This new hub design rolls on an incredibly tough and light nylon material rim, all held tight by an integrated lock system which as a bonus makes changing tires a breeze.

The rear hub is specially engineered for full blown freestyle assault; it utilizes not two, but three precision bearings across the axle as a foundation for the two forged / CNC'd aluminum hub parts, which via the hidden lock system are held rock solid against any lateral force exerted through the hub, even under extreme riding conditions.

Not only are they the lightest and strongest Mini BMX wheel available worldwide, they look incredible and are available in a range of anodized colors and rim combinations. Check em out!

 

Pro Turbo Wheel - Wildcat Mini BMX

 

For a limited time, the Pro Series range come with the Turbo Wheel as Standard.  Shop Now.

Wildcat Mini BMX Pro Series


1 Response

Jessica
Jessica

September 07, 2019

Great bike and amazing company

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★ Judge.me Reviews

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2A royal purple

I really like it so far. I'm 5'10 145lb and 34 years. I bought to ride with my son who is just learning to ride. so now I can have fun and trick while he is learning the basics. So I have the one piece crank and it feels good and strong. (Was a lil hesitant) I also got the break. And with some adjustment it stops me real nice. At 145lb wasn't sure how it would work. but it does good, very happy about that. Frame is beautiful and feels super sturdy. Only things I don't really like are the pedals (seem cheap)(sorry)and the seat could be more adjustable. I know you can buy em but at 370$ I assumed it would adjust and the pedals would be of decent quality. The box was ripped and a screw on the headset was bent and it is also pretty scratched. Just went to local bike shop and replaced the screw but the scratches are lame. Anyway I love it and it's super fun to ride around the house. I'm just a big kid

Thanks so much for your review Travis - they are the best to ride around with your young kids - before you know it he'll want his own. Sorry there was an issue with the bolt - glad you got it sorted. If you have a photo of the damage to the box, please send it through to us so we can follow up with FedEx. Enjoy riding it.
Mini bike

This is a wonderful bike thank yall my son loves it and great wonderful service I recommend to anyone. All parts where there and was an easy install once again thank you

Thanks so much Florentino - really pleased that your son loves the bike. Hope he gets hours and hours of fun on it.
Wildcat review

I got 2 bikes so I’ll combine em. I got the Blue Pro and the chrome mini freak.

In my opinion the grips on the bikes are too wide. It does give you plenty room to grip however it forces the break handle clamp into the bar bend. So It doesn’t sit right and isn’t snug. I’d also like them to have a much longer seat post for a higher seat setting.

I also think the Pro should come with the pegs.. it just should. That being said, the bikes are awesome. They’re very good build quality and tough little bmx’ers. I’m an old dirt jumper/park rider and don’t feel like I have to take it easy on the bike at all. I’d break something before the bike does. Having fun learning to ride them.

I like the larger chro-mo bars on the freak a little better than the bars on the pro. Just a better fit for me. I do like the pro wheels, they seem a little tougher then the standard wheels, however the standard wheels are perfectly fine.

Overall cool bikes. At the skate park I had both kids and some parents ask me where I got them :-)

Ride on.

Huge thanks for your review and really helpful feedback Ren - that's appreciated. Really pleased that you love the build and quality of the bikes - but would prefer it if you don't break anything on yourself first ! Will pass your feedback in regards to the bars and grips onto the team - we are always looking for feedback so we can keep improving them.
Stellar

I bought my son a mini for Christmas! The customer service was wonderful in explaining what needed assembled and if I, a super not handy mom, could pull it off on Christmas Eve. haha! Which I was able to btw! They are very quick to respond to any emails and issues. My son has been on his bike as much as possible since Santa brought it. We get tons of questions and compliments about where we got it and how cool it looks. Good purchase, great customer service! Highly recommend!

Love it Jayne, and so pleased that you found it easy to get the few parts assembled. Hope it gives hours and hours of fun for your son. Shred hard and so glad you’re part of the Wildcat Pride.
Awesome

Very awesome

Thanks man, appreciate the 5 stars.