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Clever Ways To Reuse Old Bicycle Wheels

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In cycling, it’s easy to end up with old bike parts you no longer use.

Wheels are no exception.

You might’ve upgraded to a new, lighter set of wheels, or maybe your old wheels are worn out one way or another.

How do you reuse an old bike wheel?

In this article, we’ll offer you a wide range of creative ideas.

11 Ideas For Reusing Bicycle Wheels

There are various ways to put old bike wheels to good use, depending on their condition in some cases.

1. Light Fixture

Creating a light fixture from an old bike wheel can be very easy in some cases.

Or you can make a sophisticated luminaire or chandelier.

One simple way to make a light fixture is to use a battery-operated string of LED lights.

That way, you don’t even need to deal with wiring in electrics.

You just weave the LED lights around the spokes and decorate the wheel rim to taste.

2. Kitchen Pot Hanger

You can make a kitchen pot hanger or pot rack from an old bike wheel by suspending it from a ceiling.

The pots hang from the wheel rim and spokes using simple S-hooks over the rim and spokes.

To get the wheel onto the ceiling, you need to remove any bearings at the center of the wheel.

A threaded rod goes through the center, and the wheel is held onto the end of the rod using a nut and a washer.

Drill a hole into a ceiling stud before threading the rod (and wheel) into the ceiling. Your bike wheel pot hanger is then ready to use!

According to the team at Essential Home and Garden, pot hangers are a great way to keep your kitchen organized while adding a touch of style.

A bike wheel pot hanger is a unique and cool way to repurpose an old bike wheel and it gives a rustic, industrial look to your kitchen.

It’s an eco-friendly option as well as adding a unique touch to your kitchen decor.

3. Laundry Hanger

If you fix a bike wheel to the top of a wooden or metal floor stand (i.e., a pole with feet), you have the perfect cyclist’s laundry hanger.

You can hang garments over the wheel rim or spokes using regular coat hangers.

This idea works well in the home but has also been utilized by clothes stores and outdoor market stands.

4. Photo Frame

A bike wheel with spokes is pretty good at holding photos.

You just thread them between spokes to hold them in place.

You can also use pegs if you prefer.

Hang this display on a wall or prop it up on the top of a piece of furniture.

You can attach the wheel to a piece of wood if you want an attractive backing, or decorate the rim with ribbons or artificial flowers, for instance.

5. Garden Trellis

Old bike wheels make great garden trellises.

These can support climbing plants or train plants so they grow vertically.

There are various ways to create this trellis.

You can pin them vertically to a wall or fence.

Another way is to attach two horizontal wheels to either end of a pole and tie threads of string between them for plants to cling to.

6. Bike Wheel Mirror

To create a mirror from a bike wheel, you’d typically clip or bolt a circular mirror to the center of a spoked wheel.

Alternatively, you can remove the spokes of a wheel and use the wheel rim as the frame of a mirror.

Wheels with colorful or stylish decals work well.

7. Coffee Table

There are several ways to make a coffee table or outdoor table from old bike wheels.

Normally, the wheel rim complete with spokes will be covered with a circular piece of tempered glass to make the table surface.

The legs of the table can also be made with dissected wheel rims.

Otherwise, regular table legs suffice.

8. Home Trainer

Maybe you have old bike wheels with worn-out brake tracks?

You might just have spare wheels that are sitting idle after an upgrade.

You can put these old bike wheels on a home trainer.

A wheel-on home trainer could extend the useful life of two old wheels even if they’re not safe to ride outside.

If you’re using an old rear wheel on a home trainer, it’ll need a serviceable hub and gears (though gears aren’t always strictly necessary).

The stationary front wheel can be in any state as long as it’s vaguely true.

9. Wheel Of Chance Game

A wheel of chance carnival-style game is great fun at parties, especially if everyone wins a prize.

There are several ways to make this.

One way is to cut a circle out of plywood that is larger than your bike wheel, then attach the wheel to the wood.

Paint sections of the wooden wheel in bright colors and add numbers or words that represent prizes.

Mount the wheel onto an A-frame or board.

Create a marker so players know which section of the wheel their spin has landed on.

10. Christmas Wreath

With this idea, the spoked bike wheel simply serves as a frame for any seasonal decorations you wish to drape around it.

That might include holly, conifer sprigs, baubles, sparkling lights, flowers, ribbons, or bows.

11. Bike Wheel Clock

You can fashion a clock out of a bike wheel using a clock kit, a couple of chainrings, a circular piece of colored card, and some homemade numbers and clock hands.

The clock kit fits between two chainrings and is fixed into place using plastic zip ties.

Epoxy is used to glue the whole clock face and movement to the wheel spokes.

Video: Making A Bike Wheel Clock

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Mark Whitley
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Mark is the founder of BikePush, a bicycle commuting website. When he's not working on BikePush, you can find him out riding.

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