No one ever rides their mountain bike without stopping, be it for a short break or a chat with fellow riders, you come to a stop at some point. A kickstand may come in handy in these situations but as you already know, most mountain bikes don’t come with one from the factory.
However, it is something that can be added for a little cost and make your riding life easier. We will dive right into our guide of installing a kickstand on a mountain bike.
How to Install a Kickstand on a Mountain Bike
You might feel like this is a big challenge if you haven’t done much on your bike previously. That’s totally understandable but soon enough you will realize that installing a kickstand on your mountain bike is much easier than it seems.
Step #1: Choose your kickstand
Get online and search for kickstands for your bike. You will come across lots of options, different models, and types of stands; but don’t let that confuse you – ring a few shops and ask them questions if you feel overwhelmed with the online results.
Buyer reviews also help a lot when deciding on a kickstand. Once you’ve made your choice and purchase, it’s time to get your hands dirty!
Step #2: Check the positioning of the kickstand
Since your bike didn’t have a kickstand before, it might be a tad difficult to figure out where it should go. Positioning of the kickstand is the most important aspect of installing one, so take your time with it. As a rule of thumb, the kickstand is always attached to the frame where there is clearance on both sides of the bike.
Try a few positions and see if you can find the perfect spot for it. Keep in mind that the spot should be lower on the frame so that the stand can reach the ground when you put it down. Also, ensure that it’s not rubbing against your rear tire when it’s not deployed.
Step #3: Connect the bolt to your bike
The kickstand should come with a bolt(s) and some sort of a top bracket, which at first glance seems like it doesn’t really match up with the bracket part. The only tool you will need is a wrench – most kickstands have a bolt that fits a 14mm wrench well. An adjustable wrench would also work.
Once you establish where you want to install it, it’s time to bolt it to your bike. Start with attaching the kickstand bracket to your bike. It’ll be around your two lower frame bars. The kickstand will be installed under the bracket.
It is also important to ensure that your kickstand bracket comes with flanges. Without those, there is a risk of your kickstand hitting the rear shifting cable. The bracket is there to hold it steady when you are not using it.
Step #4: Tighten the bolts
Once everything is where it should be, you can go ahead and tighten the bolts. It’s a good practice to tighten the bolts evenly if there are multiple. Just take turns when tightening them and keep a rough measure of turns you did for each bolt.
Kickstand bolts might not come with a recommended torque number for tightness so go with your best estimate and remember, the tighter it is the safer you are.
Step #5: Enjoy your new kickstand
That was all, your mountain bike now has a kickstand installed. Don’t be shy to take it out for a spin around the block and test it. Hopefully, everything went smoothly and now you have a bike that you can park easily without worrying about damaging/scratching it. If you are not quite happy with the positioning of your kickstand, redo it and find a better alignment.
What to Watch out for When Installing Your Kickstand
You should be on the watch out for two things when you have a kickstand installed on your mountain bike. The first one and the more serious one is the kickstand deploying while you are riding. Some riders have reported their kickstands deployed while riding rough terrain, caused by intense bouncing of the bike.
Accidentally deploying the kickstand like this could lead to serious injuries. The second issue is kickstand rubbing/hitting parts of your bike, mainly the rear tire. This would lead to premature wear of your tire and in some cases, may cause you to have an accident.
The advantages of installing a kickstand on your mountain bike
- Reduced risk of damage when your bike isn’t laying flat on the ground for someone to trip over
- Easy to load/unload the bike when it’s standing up
- Makes it easier to carry out simple maintenance/repair work
- Makes washing your bike easier after rides