There are five main parts to the bicycle, that without which, the bicycle would not be able to function. They are the frame, the gears and drive-train, the handlebars and saddles, the brakes, and the wheels and tires. Optional accessories include headlights and taillights, and a water bottle attachment.
The most important safety feature of the bicycle is its brakes. All standard bicycles come with two brakes, located on each tire. Though different brake types exist, there is a different purpose for each type. Disc and rim brakes operate solely through levers attached to the handlebars, and are usually used when the cyclist goes off road. Typical brakes for on road cycling are coaster brakes, which operate by the cyclist pedalling backwards.
The core of the bicycle lies in its frame. It allows a base for all components to be attached and allows the bike to function properly with great stability. Frames come in a variety of shapes, but the typical bicycle consists of two front and rear triangles that make a diamond shape. The front is composed of the head tube, seat tube, top tube, and down tube. This portion is the most vital aspect of the entire bicycle. The back triangle is comprised of the seat stays, paired chained stays, and the seat tube.
In order to make the bicycle function, the machine must have the right gears and a drive-train. If a bicycle lacked these important aspects it would not function as a moving vehicle. Attached to the pedals is the drive train, which makes the cranks turn, and is held in place by a lower bracket. All of this machinery is attached to the pedals, allowing the cyclist to use his or her feet to propel the bicycle onward by way of the drive train, which transfers the power from the pedals to the back wheel.
In order to maintain proper speeds, the bicycle depends on gear ratios. Cyclists can set these gears for optimal pedalling on different terrains and for different methods of cycling of cycling. Bicycles sporting a multi-speed function can select the gear setting to adapt to the circumstances, using different settings depending on the situation.
A bicycle gets its name from the fact that it has two wheels, which are usually called the wheel set. Tires typically vary in size, ranging from thin, also known as skinny, for biking on the road, or thick for an off-road experience. In order to control the bicycle, the cyclist depends on the handle bars and saddles. The handlebars are primarily utilized for controlling the direction of the bike. This area is also used to mount accessories and brake controls. The saddle, or seat, is where the rider sits on the machine. It is located near the end of the bicycle, and is set between the wheels to aid in balance and control.
Good cyclists should familiarize themselves with all aspects of their bicycle. This familiarization ensures that they are comfortable with the vehicle in which they enjoy.