How to Convert a Mountain Bike to a Gravel Bike

One of the great things about mountain biking is that it can be done on a variety of terrain. However, sometimes you may want to venture off the beaten path and explore some backroads or trails that are too rough for a traditional road bike. In these cases, a gravel bike can be the perfect solution.

By making a few simple modifications, you can turn your mountain bike into a rugged machine that’s ready to take on anything. Here are the steps you need to take to convert your mountain bike into a gravel bike:

1. Start by swapping out your tires for something with more tread. This will give you better traction on loose surfaces like sand or gravel. You may also want to consider using wider tires for stability and comfort.

2. Next, lower your Seatpost so that you’re in a more upright position. This will give you better visibility and control on uneven terrain.

3. If your bike has suspension forks, lock them out so that they’re not absorbing shocks from the ground. This will make pedaling easier and help prevent flats.

4. Finally, add some extra gear so that you can tackle steep hills or long distances.

  • 1) Choose the right tires for your bike: You’ll need tires that are wider than your mountain bike’s, with a tread pattern that can handle both hard-packed dirt and loose gravel
  • 2) Install fenders on your bike: This will help keep you clean and dry when riding on wet or muddy trails
  • 3) Swap out your mountain bike pedals for ones that are better suited for gravel riding: Platform pedals or clipless pedals with recessed cleats are a good choice
  • 4) Adjust your seat height and handlebar position to be more comfortable for long days in the saddle
How to Convert a Mountain Bike to a Gravel Bike

Can You Put Gravel Wheels on a Mountain Bike?

Gravel wheels on a mountain bike? It’s possible, but not recommended. Here’s why:

Mountain bikes are designed for off-road riding, and their tires are usually wider than those on gravel bikes. This gives them more stability and grip on loose or uneven surfaces. Gravel bike tires are narrower, which makes them faster on paved roads but less stable on dirt or gravel.

So if you put gravel wheels on a mountain bike, you’ll probably have to lower the tire pressure to get the same grip and stability that you’re used to. But that also means you’ll be more susceptible to flats. Another consideration is that most mountain bikes have suspension forks, while most gravel bikes do not.

This means that the front end of your mountain bike will be higher off the ground with gravel wheels installed, which could make it harder to navigate technical terrain. So unless you’re planning on doing mostly road riding with your mountain bike, it’s probably best to stick with the stock wheelset.

Is a Mountain Bike As Fast As a Gravel Bike?

Mountain bikes and gravel bikes are both designed for off-road riding, but each has its own specific strengths. Mountain bikes are typically more nimble and easier to maneuver around tight corners, while gravel bikes are designed for stability and comfort on longer rides. So, which is faster?

It really depends on the terrain. On a smooth, flat surface, a gravel bike will likely be faster due to its higher gears and lower rolling resistance. But on technical trails with lots of rocks and roots, a mountain bike will be able to navigate the obstacles more easily and maintain its speed.

Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference and what type of riding you’ll be doing most often.

Can You Put Gravel Tires on Any Bike?

Gravel tires are a type of mountain bike tire that is designed for riding on rough, unpaved surfaces. They are typically wider than traditional mountain bike tires and have more tread to provide traction on loose terrain. While gravel tires can be used on any type of bike, they are most commonly seen on gravel bikes, which are designed specifically for riding on gravel roads and trails.

Can You Turn Any Road Bike into Gravel Bike?

There are a few ways to turn a road bike into a gravel bike. One way is to simply swap out the tires for wider, more robust tires. This will give you more traction and stability on loose or uneven surfaces.

You may also want to add some mudguards or fenders to keep yourself clean and dry while riding on muddy roads. Another option is to buy a complete gravel-specific bike. These bikes usually have slightly different geometry than road bikes, with a longer wheelbase and lower bottom bracket for stability, and clearance for wider tires.

They often come equipped with other features like disc brakes and racks or mounts for accessories like lights or extra water bottles. Whether you convert your road bike or buy a new one, gravel biking can be a great way to explore the outdoors and get some fresh air!

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Best Mountain Bike to Convert to Gravel Bike

When it comes to choosing a mountain bike to convert to a gravel bike, there are a few things to consider. First, what is your budget? Second, what kind of riding do you plan on doing?

Third, what are your preferred features? If you’re looking for the best bang for your buck, the Salsa Timberjack is a great option. It’s a versatile and durable bike that can handle just about anything you throw at it.

For a more budget-friendly option, the Raleigh Tamland 2 is also a great choice. If you’re planning on doing more aggressive riding, the Santa Cruz Stigmata is worth considering. It’s designed for racing and can handle even the roughest terrain.

For something slightly less aggressive but still capable, take a look at the Specialized Diverge. Finally, think about what features you want in your gravel bike. If you value comfort above all else, look for bikes with wider tires and suspension forks.

If speed is your top priority, go for something with lighter components and fewer accessories. Ultimately, the best gravel bike for you is the one that fits your riding style and preferences perfectly.

26” Mtb to Gravel Conversion

In the world of mountain biking, there are few things as versatile as a 26” mountain bike. They can be used for just about anything, from cross-country riding to downhill shredding. But what if you want to take your 26” mountain bike and turn it into a gravel grinder?

With a few simple modifications, you can turn your 26” mountain bike into a gravel-eating machine. Here are the steps you need to take:

1. Choose the right tires: When converting your mountain bike to a gravel grinder, the first thing you need to do is choose the right tires.
You’ll want something with low rolling resistance and plenty of grip for cornering. We recommend the Schwalbe G-One Allround tire in either 700x38c or 650bx47c size.

2. Swap out your suspension fork: If your mountain bike has a suspension fork, it’s time to swap it out for a rigid fork.
This will save you precious grams of weight and also make your bike more responsive on paved roads. There are many great rigid forks on the market, so do some research and find one that suits your riding style and budget.

3. Install wider handlebars: Wider handlebars give you more control when descending steep grades and make it easier to avoid obstacles on the road.

We recommend going with bars that are at least 44cm wide (measured from outside edge to outside edge). This will give you plenty of room to maneuver without feeling too cramped in your cockpit.

Hardtail to Gravel Bike Conversion

Anyone who’s done any gravel riding knows that a hardtail mountain bike is not ideal. The jarring bumps and lack of suspension can make for a very uncomfortable ride. So, what do you do if you want to convert your hardtail mountain bike into a gravel bike?

There are a few things you’ll need to do in order to make this happen. First, you’ll need to get yourself some wider tires. Mountain bike tires are typically too narrow for gravel riding, so you’ll want something in the 35-45mm range.

You might also want to consider getting some fenders to keep yourself clean and dry on wet days. Next, you’ll need to lower your tire pressure. This will help absorb some of the bumps and vibrations from the road surface.

Aim for 30-35 psi in the front and 35-40 psi in the rear. Finally, you’ll want to make sure your handlebars are positioned correctly. Gravel riding puts more strain on your upper body than mountain biking, so you’ll want to make sure your handlebars are at a comfortable height and width for you.

If possible, try to test out different setups before committing to one – everyone’s body is different and what works for one person might not work for another. With these simple changes, you can turn your hardtail mountain bike into a capable gravel machine!


Mountain biking is a great way to get outside and explore nature, but it can be tough on your bike. If you’re looking for a way to make your mountain bike more versatile, consider converting it to a gravel bike. Gravel bikes are designed for riding on rough terrain, so they’re perfect for exploring backroads and trails.

Plus, they’re usually lighter and easier to maneuver than mountain bikes. To convert your mountain bike to a gravel bike, start by swapping out the tires. Mountain bike tires are designed for traction on dirt and mud, but they can be slow on paved surfaces.

Gravel tires have a smoother tread that’s ideal for riding on pavement or packed dirt. You may also want to switch out your pedals if you ride with clipless pedals; gravel pedals have a wider platform that’s easier to keep your feet stable when you’re riding over uneven terrain. Once you’ve swapped out the tires and pedals, take your new gravel bike out for a spin!

With its wider tires and stable platform, you’ll be able to tackle any terrain with confidence.


  • Shafin Al Mahmud

    Shafin is a biker and writer from Amana Colonies, IA, USA. where he resides in a small village. With a passion for cycling and a talent for words, Shafin has made a career out of sharing his love of the sport with others. Whether he's reviewing the latest gear, offering training tips, or simply sharing his adventures on two wheels, Shafin's articles are always informative, insightful, and inspiring. As a local resident of Amana Colonies, Shafin brings a unique perspective to his writing, offering readers a glimpse into the biking culture and community of his home region. So if you're a fellow biker or just a fan of the sport, be sure to check out Shafin's articles – you won't be disappointed.