Do you want to reach destination silently with your mountain bike? Well, it depends upon the bike hubs onto what your wheels are rotating. In addition, these wheel centers will decide whether you can leave your fellow partners behind or keep trying to be in the race. In other words, bike hubs are responsible for two factors. How much you need to pedal before the rear hub starts rotating? How smooth will be your ride? Therefore, here are some of the best mountain bike hubs that are useful if you are customizing your bike for an upcoming race or tour.
Top Mountain Bike Hubs in 2020
1. SHIMANO Front Mountain Bicycle Hub - HB-M525
Today’s first recommendation comes from Shimano, one of the leaders in this biking industry. And why not? The brand has given us a wide range of reliable cycling accessories that are available at different price ranges. Perfect for mountain bicycles, HB-M525 is a front hub built with the same trust that reflects in its high-quality performance. It doesn’t have the lowest price tag. Still, the hub is an excellent choice biker looking for affordable wheel modification.
Shimano HB-M525 is easy to install and hence it’s a great purchase if you are upgrading the bike hubs for the first time. Its 18 engagement points make your ride smoother. But, the hub is not serviceable or upgradable like other models. You might ignore this small hurdle after looking at its price tag because a maintenance-free design is always great for newcomers as well as experienced cyclists.
- Reliable product from a reputable brand
- Black color looks great with any of the mountain bikes
Shimano HB-M525 is a beneficial purchase for new cyclists because it’s easy to install and seeks minimal maintenance. Even if you are an experienced biker, you can take advantage of its affordable price tag and long-lasting built.
2. SHIMANO Deore LX Front Track Bicycle Hub - HB-T780
Built for trekking and mountain bikes with a rim braking system, the Deore LX front hub offers reliable and long-lasting performance. All the credit goes to its high quality built, premium sealing and angular contact bearings, this bicycle hub co-operates well in all the riding conditions and make sure you don’t have to pedal hard to reach the destination.
Deore LX has a unique large flange design and comes with Borozon treated races. Due to durable built and smart design, the front track bicycle hub offers uninterrupted cycling or racing sessions for a long time. Its black and silver color scheme suits all the mountain bikes. The hub is available at a reasonable price tag, but it’s not one of the most affordable models that you can try.
- Unique large flange design
- Angular bearings for smooth movement
- Dual contact seals
Shimano HB-T780 is suitable for any of the riders who needs a durable and easy to install front bicycle hub.
3. SHIMANO Deore XT Front Mountain Bicycle Hub - HB-M8000
Do you own a mountain bike with XT M8000 groupset that has a quick-release mechanism? If yes, then the HB-M8000 is one of the best hubs that you can try. Made of lightweight aluminum, it promises durability and long-lasting performance without looking for repairs or replacement. Not only the body, but the hub also has an aluminum built axle and release lever.
Suitable for all the weather and riding conditions, the front mountain bicycle hub has an internal grease sleeve that’s helpful while maintenance. Its available with 32 and 36 spoke holes to count. So, you should choose one of them depending upon the bike’s wheel.
- 9 x 100 mm quick release
- Flange distance of 60.2 mm
- Axle length of 108mm
- Axle diameter of 14mm
- Pitch circle diameter of 44mm and 42 mm for left and right respectively
If you are looking for a lightweight and reliable front hub for your mountain bike with M8000 groupset, then Shimano HB-M8000 is another option you can try.
4. SHIMANO Deore XT Mountain Bicycle Free Hub - FH-M756-L
SHIMANO Deore FH-M756-L is a rear hub for mountain bikes that comprises a 6-bolt mount for brake disc. The freehub has dual layer sealing that offers complete protection from all the external factors including dirt and moisture. It’s the primary reason why Deore XT mountain bicycle rear hub is durable and offers unparalleled performance in all the riding conditions.
The freehub has a steel body and its shell is anodized aluminum. FH-M756-L is compatible with 8 to 10-speed derailleurs and also accepts Shimano MTB 11-speed box. The distance between its locknuts is 135 mm, which also includes its quick-release lever.
- Optimum performance due to angular contact bearings
- Shifting speed between 8 to 11
- Support for six-hole disc braking system
- Available in 32 and 36 flange holes
Shimano FH-M756-L is a great option for bikers who are involved in some serious trekking and mountain riding activities. It’s compatible with all the drivetrains up to 11 speed, so a great companion for long tours and mountain races.
5. SHIMANO Deore XT Mountain Bicycle Disc Brake Freehub - FH-M8000
SHIMANO Deore XT series of bike hubs are reputed for its high quality built and advanced technology. Freehub FH-M8000 is one of the latest offerings from the same range. Thanks to continuous development, it is lightweight and more refined than other counterparts. And why not? Shimano has the experience of many years of work, which is liberally invested in this mountain bike disk brake hub.
The Freehub has an aluminum made axle equipped with a labyrinth seal. It has a cup and cone bearing that absorbs radial and axial forces to deliver quiet rides and minimal maintenance. Then the hub has 32 spoke holes and an overall width of 135 mm including its quick release. The moderately priced rear hub has a mount for center lock brake disc.
- Axle diameter of 9 mm
- Marker spacing of 57.4 mm
- Waterproof bearing
- Disc brake Center lock supported
Freehub FH-M8000 is a robust and longlasting rear hub that supports up to 11-speed drivetrains that seeks minimal servicings. So, it’s a great rear hub for mountain racers and individuals who don’t have much time for bike maintenance.
6. JIMAITEAM Novatec D041SB D042SB MTB Mountain Bike Disc Hub Set
Here comes today’s first set of front and rear hub wherein both of them are aluminum made and are available in either 32 or 36 spoke hole models. The front hub has a width of 100 mm while the rear is worth 135 mm. The diameter of their axles is 10 mm including the quick release. The front hub has 2 seal bearings while the rear one has 4.
Made in Taiwan, the Novatec disc hub set is available in only blue shade, which will suit any of the mountain bikes for boys. Both the hubs are lightweight and never adds much heft to your rides. The warranty on the product is of 12 months.
- Available as 32 or 36 spoke holes
- Supports all the Shimano gearboxes up to 11 speed
- Rear hub weighs 497 grams, while the front one weights 213 grams
- Skewers are included
If you don’t want to waste time looking for different hubs for your mountain bike, then Jimaiteam Novatec is a great option to consider, especially if you have a Shimano drivetrain.
7. DIYARTS mountain bike Hub
Diyarts barrel axis mountain bike hub set is available in golden and many other colors. You can also try its quick release version, which is available in black, blue, red, and titanium. Made of high-quality aluminum alloy, these bike hubs efficiently transfer all the energy to wheels, so that you can reach a destination without much struggle. Their appearance makes your mountain bike even more stylish. Moreover, the hubs make a very crisp sound that adds some more thrill to your trips.
No matter you own a mountain bike or a regular road bicycle, the Diyarts bike hubs are compatible with all of them. There is 32 hole to support the spokes and its compatible with all the Shimano drivetrains including 8, 9 and 10 speeds. The diameter of the rear hub is 12 mm while its 15 mm for the front.
- Long-lasting and lightweight aluminum built
- 72 rings design
- 32 spoke holes
- 142 mm width of the rear hub, 100 mm for front
The lightweight and robust bike hub set from Diyarts is suitable for riders who enjoy Long Mountain racking or road trips.
8. Shimano Deore M525A 36h Rear 6-Bolt Disc Hub
Do you need an incredible performance from your bike? Then, try the durable and super strong Shimano Deore M525A, which an ultimate unit that offers high mileage but never asks much from your pocket. It completes your bikes in a way that you can enjoy multiple tours or trips without any maintenance or repair.
The 6-bolt disc hub is so strong that you can easily award it with lifetime service medals. Its external seals are bigger and protect the internal components. Even if you don’t service it for years, the hub will not fail because of internal green grease lubrication. Its bearings are old school, but there are 36 holes for the spokes.
- Indefinite lifetime even if used under rough conditions
- Width of 135 mm
- 36 holes’ design
- Polished bearings for low friction performance
If you need a long-lasting rear hub that can perform without making much noise, then Deore M525A is a cost-effective option that you can try.
9. DT Swiss DT 350 Rear Mountain Bike Hub
Cycling accessories by DT Swiss DT 350 is comparatively expensive, but you also get an assurance that you are investing in a high standard product. One of their classics, the DT 350 is in front of you as our ninth contender. Its star-ratchet system is the primary factor that brings the rear hub to one of our favorites. Then comes its durable built, lightweight nature, and capability to perform well under rough conditions.
Due to an extensive diameter, this rear hub works with added strength and offers a mountain riding experience that you cannot expect from its counterparts. And why not? The unit also has a high number of engagement points. So, when it engages after every 20 degrees there is no doubt you will enjoy a smooth ride every time.
- Easy to service and upgrade
- Optional upgrade that takes engagement to 10 degrees
- 36 engagement points
One of the best bike hubs for mountain and cross country riding, the DT350 is suitable for users who are looking to get a durable and performance-oriented bike hub.
10. Talisman DC4 Dual-Ano 6-Pawl Disc MTB Hub Set
The first factor that you will notice about this Talisman DC4 is its appearance, which is attractive and wild. Whether your mountain bike rests in the garage or its in motion with you, the hub set looks good and adds some style to your rides. The set is not only beautiful externally because deep down the skin it’s also durable and performs better than any other model available at this price range.
Talisman DC24 weighs only 428 grams and is one of the best sounding bike hubs set you can find. On top of that, there are 72 engagement points. Means, it’s also one of the smoothest mountain bike riding hub set. No matter you are driving on roads or dealing with some harsh mountain tracks, the components serve well and never gives you a chance to complain.
- Dual anodized body
- 5-degree engagement for superior acceleration
- Tool-free assembly and easy maintenance
- A dual sealed cartridge in the front set
- Lightweight at 428 grams
Talisman hub set is suitable for professional cyclists who need high- quality performance without spending much. Its tool-free assembly and easy servicing make it great for beginners as well.
What is a Mountain Bike Hub?
The center of your mountain bike’s wheels is named as a hub. This component uses the spokes to connect with a mountain bike’s rim and also allows its axle to fit properly. It has ball bearings that enable both front and rear wheels to move smoothly. In other words, a hub is one of the primary components you need to get involved in any bike race or bicycling activity.
Advantages of Mountain Bike Hubs
Better than repeated maintenance: Hub bearings loosen and seek tightening once in a while. After a few years of usage, it’s better and cost-effective to replace the hubs instead of repairing or replacing cones and balls.
Less weight: Whether it’s the front or rear hub, you would want it to be lightweight. New mountain bike hubs are lightweight because of recent developments of inbuilt materials and manufacturing processes. So, if you are preparing a race of mountain riding wherein you don’t want to ride a heavy bike, it’s time to try one of the low weight MTB hubs.
Stable: A well-built mountain bike hub gives you stiff and stable rides. Strong spoke holes, means the hub will keep your bike balanced so that you can enjoy steady rides.
How to Choose Mountain Bike Hubs?
Mountain bike hubs are generally available with three different types of ball bearings: angular contact, cup and cone, and sealed cartridge bearings. Among all the three categories, cup and cone bearings are the easiest to service, because you only top it up with some amount of grease. However, tuning the bearing pressure might be trouble for beginners.
The other two bearing types are easy to replace and don’t seeks any pressure or tension adjustment. Talking about the cost, cone and hub are inexpensive among all. So, choose one of them according to your experience level and the time you can spend upon its maintenance.
Built materials and weight:
Most of the mountain bike hubs are constructed with alloy to reduce weight. Some of the ultra-light hubs also have carbon fiber built. So, try to invest in a set of lightweight hubs. You can go for steel-made hubs where weight is a necessity to avoid any catastrophic damages.
Spacing and axle:
What is the axle size of your mountain bike’s fork? It should be anything among 10, 12, 15, or 20 mm. With quick release options, the size could even be as low as 5 mm. So, choose a hub that fits the fork. Then, comes the spacing wherein you will find three categories; non-boost, boost, and super boost. The spacing or width of non-boost hubs is fixed at 135 or 142 at the rear and 100 mm at the front.
Boost hubs measure 148 mm at the rear and 110 at the front. Spacing between flanges increases and hence such a hub provides your ride a stiffer wheel. Moreover, boost hubs also create extra spacing for fat tires by pushing the chain outwards up to 3 mm. Super boost rear hubs come with a width of 157 mm to create extra spacing between wheels for a strong buildup.
You will often find some engagement points in the description of a mountain bike hub. In simple words, it indicates the number of time internal machinery works to complete one revolution. There is much more to understand, however going with the maximum engagement points is beneficial. A high number of clicks simply means a smoother ride.
FAQS about Mountain Bike Hubs
In case you are not sure about the frame spacing, you can check the hub width by measuring it. To do that, take out the rear wheel and use a ruler or caliper to measure the distance between its dropouts. You should measure between the inner surfaces of the dropout.
In case you have a cone and cup hub, the first step is to take out the cassette from bike’s rear wheel. You will need two cone spanners for the same. Then, take out the axle and use a magnetic screwdriver to attract the bearings from their race. Clean the bearings using a degreaser and few paper cloths. If any of the bearings are not in good shape, replace them. The same goes for the cones, but you cannot replace it in all the models including Shimano.
Apply some areas in the bearing race and place all the bearings back. Reattach the axle and turn it very gently to check everything at the right place. Repeat the same process on the other side and front hub.
Finding one of the best mountain bike hubs could be an uphill task for most of the new riders. We hope that this article helps you to know a bit more about some MTB hubs that are better than their counterparts. You can try any one of the above-mentioned products, depending upon your preferences. If you have any confusion, check the buying guide.