Help buying second wheel for bike

I have a wheel-on smart trainer that I’ve used with Zwift and my hybrid bike for a year. I replaced the read tire with a trainer tire a few months ago, which has been going great.

As summer is approaching, I am looking to make it easy for me to take my bike outdoors. I obviously cannot ride on the trainer tire, so I was thinking that one of the simplest (yet cheapest) ways to optimize here is to get a second bike wheel. I would use this “second” wheel indoors, and my original wheel (with original tire rubber) outdoors.

However, I am a complete noob with bikes. I’d like to go second hand on Kijiji or something (no point buying a new wheel, in my opinion, I am an amateur). What are the specifications that I need to get off of my current wheel and look for when buying a new wheel? And how do I make sure the gearing lines up (e.g. I have 7 gears in the back)?


Many people do this. You just need a cheap rear wheel and cassette that you can swap over.

Hopefully the gears remain lined up, wheel on trainers they tend to be ok but direct drive less so as you tend to see the rear mech pushed inwards when mounted on a turbo.

Ideally you can find a used 7 speed wheel but if not make sure the wheel that takes a cassette, not a freewheel. Then you can add in the correct spacers behind the lowest gear on the cassette to make your gears line up.

You could buy a set of cheap carbon aero wheels (50 mm) and use them outside and leave your current wheel as the indoor wheel
Never miss an opportunity to upgrade.
Upgrading wheels is probably better than upgrading a frame.

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Well, I suspect that most if not all “cheap” 50mm carbon wheels cost more than my race bike. :man_shrugging: (CAAD12 ultegra with campy eurus wheels).

Plus, finding a set of 7 speed carbon wheels might be a challenge.

I am curious…how did you end up with 7-speed on a CAAD12? That is only a few years old. Even my 14 year old Kestrel has 10-speed.

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Yup upgrade the wheels for riding outside and downgrade the current ones to training duty

Don’t have to go full carbon or anything, on most hybrids a $300 aluminum wheelset would be a great upgrade

My CAAD12 is 11speed and cost me $1350 with upgraded wheels, bar, stem and saddle

Oleg, the author, said he rides a 7 speed


He could also go an buy a Dogma F12 with Lightweight Meilenstein’s but that wasn’t really what he was looking for… :roll_eyes:

My point is for less than “ugrading” to carbon wheels he could actually purchase a brand new bike.

Sorry Bob, my response was meant for Tim, I think we were agreeing, not sure how I managed that.

Sure, there are 2 sides to every coin.
In general, I think people would be happier upgrading their wheels on the outdoor bike and use the old components for their trainer.
Of course budgets and compatibility issues are present.

I use an old ( 6 speed steel) bike permanently mounted on my wheel-on turbo, and use my “newer” road bike outdoors :wink:

I did the same thing to a 6 speed steel bike.
I spread the frame to accept my old alloy 9 speed wheel when I upgraded to carbon wheels.
Mine is also on a Kinetic trainer and I thought about getting 2 of the kinetic trainer tires to make it look like a green Tron bike but I have too many retired road tires to use up first.