How Hubless Wheels Work (Inside Story)

The appearance of hubless wheels you can expect only in Sci-Fi movies. The concept of hubless wheels was first thought in the 1980s and it was left without any implementation. But modern technology revived the theories and finally invented so-called hubless wheels. The invention of the hubless wheels makes a unique turn in motorcycle mechanisms. 

If you see the hubless wheel for the first time, it will be like a fairy tale. It looks functional, but you must wonder how hubless wheels work.

In this article, we will describe how designers and engineers amplify this concept and how it works in reality. Here is the all-in-one you need to know about these latest wheels. Also, find out the FAQs in the last part.  

What Are Hubless Wheels?

Hubless wheels are also called centerless wheels. As the name suggested, the wheels don’t have a chain drive mechanism like the typical vehicle’s wheels. The center force is transferred to the wheel’s perimeter rather than the center. There are many verities that specified their own characteristics. Spokeless wheels, orbital wheels, and rim-rider are some types of hubless wheels.   

France Sbarra belongs to Italy was the first mechanical engineer who created the bicycle hubless wheel. The concept of this wheel’s mechanical structure is being developed day by day. The most common reason is the hubless wheels are probably lighter than typical wheels. 

You can find the wheels weighing less than 1.5 kilograms. Since it is lightweight, it needs a powerful rim to withstand the pressure unmediated by a set of spokes. In this case, many engineers use eight spokes in a wheel. 

How Does Hubless Wheel Work?

When the hubless wheel was invented, it was designed for bicycles. The main reason for this wheel is to reduce manpower. Nowadays, these wheels are equipped in motorcycles. But how do hubless motorcycle wheels work?

A hubless motor uses fewer moving parts and less power. Instead of a star-shaped framework, the wheels are specially designed to support the frame. There are two circular bearings that are installed inside the wheel. The tire has a built-in brake to slow and stop the motorcycle. 

In the motorcycle, the wheel is driven by an electric motor. Here the entire wheels work like a motor where the rim contains magnets, belts, or a hub motor. Moreover, many use a pistonless rotary engine as a wheel hub motor. The wheel is made of bioplastic and stuffed with isothermal compressed air. This is why the entire wheel and motor are lighter – can be related to electric motor vehicles that include lithium-ion batteries. 

You can see the hubless wheels can be covered or hollow, and contain single or many points of support on the inner side of the wheel. However, the wheel cover is mandatory to protect the precision mechanical elements from dust, dirt, and corrosion. 

These wheels need minimum torque compared to other traditional wheels. Ultimately, they provide faster and instant torque and more acceleration. So they are the more energy-efficient and faceless radius of rotating inertia.

Since the rotating shaft is not located in the center, there is more centrifugal force and the spokes reduce the weight of the wheel. Less radius of centrifugal force leads to an effective braking capacity. This is how does a hubless wheel work on a motorcycle. 

Advantages of Hubless Wheels

Certainly, you will have many benefits using the hubless wheels. Whether the wheel is installed on a bicycle or motorcycle, the ultimate advantages are similar. Below we have pointed out the advantages: 

  • Innovative design that looks unique in the vehicles. 
  • Provides more traction, torque, and faster acceleration as the powering source withstands less radius of rotating inertia. 
  • Instant braking capacity due to less radius of centrifugal force to stop. 
  • Energy-efficient features because it uses less torque, so as engine power or manpower, finally energy is consumed. 
  • Hubless wheel’s power source comes perpendicular to the surface so they have a lower center of mass that enhances the stability and cornering of the wheel. 
  • These wheels are lightweight
  • Compact design with the smaller powering system including gearing, brake, and wheel hub motor equivalent setup. 
  • Hub wheels use appropriate cover, so the parts are dust-free whereas centered wheels don’t use cover and are exposed to the elements and get corrosion.
  • Not harmful for children and ladies
  • The generation of noise and friction will minimize so there is less use of lubricant. 


Certainly, the hubless wheels have some disadvantages too. For example

  • The speed performance can be drastically limited without active suspension
  •  The vehicle cannot install the same wheel diameter as they don’t hold up angular momentum or centrifugal force. You should keep a bigger diameter which looks like a trade-off.  
  • If it is a hollow centerless wheel, there is a chance of breaking during a collision

Read More about Hublees wheels.


What are the benefits of hubless wheels?

There are various benefits that you can be fond of with the hubless wheels. First of all, the unique design looks really good on the vehicle. The design is lightweight and it helps to run the vehicle with less power, so they are energy-efficient. 

Are hubless wheels efficient?

Hubless wheels are efficient proven by many engineers and mechanics. They smoothly run the vehicle with less power consumption. But the major companies still don’t manufacture these hubless wheels which can be a major drawback to the product. Some small companies have started the addition. 

Are hubless bikes safe?

Hubless bikes are safe for both kids and adults. The mechanical parts are built into the cover so there is less chance of corrosion and making it safer for the riders. 

Final Words

Hubless wheels are the most exciting addition at the present time. The latest technology and unique look grab everyone’s attention. Today’s technology is taking toward advanced automotive design. Though the concept of hubless wheels is not new, modern technology succeeded in actualizing the theory. These wheels make a trend by providing fully functional vehicles. You can also get one and make your dream come true.

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James D. Brown
Everybody wants her/him ride experience should great. but don’t have the time to do all the research and comparisons to figure out – what wheels they should get next and where they should get it. I’m James, a sports car enthusiast like many of you. I created this site, write the reviews, and answer your comments. Join me on this ride.

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