Best Bikes For Heavy Riders in 2019 – Buying Guide!

bicycle for heavy rider with a comfort saddle

We think that the best bike for heavy riders is the Mongoose Dolomite 26”. It’s an excellent fat tire bike capable of carrying up to 275 lbs. Look below for more options if you weight more than that.

Everybody deserves the right to feel the joy and fun of cycling; nevertheless, his weight, age, or race. 

That’s the reason why I have decided to write this article and find out which are the best bikes for the big guys.

Commuting with a bike is the easiest and cheapest way of moving from one point to another, including going to work, not to mention that this is the most enjoyable way of losing weight.

As we know, cycling can be a perfect way of training for losing weight for the summer season.

If you don’t have the time to read more here, you have the best bikes for heavy riders: 

Without further ado, let’s dive into more details…

How to choose the best bikes for heavy riders.

Unfortunately, most of the bikes which are available online or even in a professional bike shop are not suited for heavy riders.

They are not rigid enough, and they will break apart after a short period of usage. The reason for that is most bikes are designed for riders below 225 lbs, and this is a massive problem for the overweight people.

The good news is that if you look in the right place, you could find a good, reliable hybrid or even a road bike which is suitable for over 250 lbs riders.

Regardless of the reason why you have decided to enter into the cycling world, I can assure you that riding your bike every day will change your life forever.

You will have so much fun while doing it and also as a bonus, you will save the planet, not to mention the health benefits.

What to consider when choosing the best bike for heavy riders?

You have to consider a few things before starting the journey of choosing a bike for you. The biggest issue is that weight limits are not always visible to buyers.

It involves guessing and contacting customer support, which can be a very frustrating experience. Or in some cases reading real customer reviews to find out if a bike can hold a specific weight.

Bike Frames for Heavy Riders 

Looking for high-quality components that are suitable for heavy riders is the most important thing to do.

And the most critical element of every bike is the frame. It has to be built especially for this case or at least to be tested with a heavyweight biker.

If we talk about the frames, my advice here is to aim for a metal frame instead of carbon. Yes, carbon is getting better, and stronger but to be on the safe side, I would recommend buying a bike with a steel or aluminum frame.

Aluminum these days is super durable, lightweight, and cheap. 

Bike Wheels for Heavy Riders 

Another advice I can give is looking for a bike with 26-inch wheels instead of 29 inches. Most mountain/hybrid bikes are fitted with 26”, but the 29” are faster and more agile.

You should definitely compromise here because always the smaller wheels are stronger. It’s simple engineering.

Of course, you could find even some good bikes with 29-inch wheels which are suitable for heavy riders.

You need to consider that some bike types are more suitable for heavy riders than others. For example, road bikes require being hunched forward, which is very uncomfortable for some people.

Some riders prefer the more upright position which is possible only on a hybrid or a mountain bike.

They can also allow more space for a bigger belly. The so-called cruiser bikes are even more comfortable, and they are a perfect choice for a big biker in general.

Avoid department store bikes. These bikes are cheap, shiny but not reliable at all. They are produced in China, and they are assembled by the people who work in the department store who know nothing about bikes.

You can also upgrade some of the parts after you buy the bike. My general advice is to change the wheels and the seat.

There are some excellent extra-wide seats which are very comfortable and perfect for big guys.

Another component which you might need to upgrade is the tires. They are often cheap and not suitable for overweight riders.

Number of Spokes 

The number of spokes on the wheel is another crucial aspect you should consider. Look for bicycles with at least 24 spokes for a rear wheel.

Front spokes matter less. In some cases, you should even go for 32 or 36 spoke wheels. So if you buy a stock bicycle with less than the recommended 24 spokes, please upgrade your local bike shop.

You shouldn’t buy a bike with a rear wheel with 18 spokes or 16 spokes. They are only suitable for lightweight riders.

So let’s dive in into the world of plus size bicycles.

Best Mountain Bikes for Heavy Riders

Diamondback Overdrive 29er – A great mountain bike for heavy riders!

Diamondback Overdrive 29er - A great mountain bike for heavy riders!

I’m a big fan of the Diamondback brand, but this is especially true for the Diamondback Overdrive 29″. It’s one of my favorite mountain bikes, and the reason is self-evident.

The Overdrive is very well made, the components used are very good, it’s reliable, and the price is normally very good on Amazon.

It’s fitted with 29-inch wheels which are rigid and durable enough to hold big weight.

The aluminum frame of the Overdrive has a warranty for up to 300 lbs, and the tires are warranted for up to 225, but I can assure you that it can hold safely up to 250 lbs – 275 lbs without any issues.

If you upgrade the tires probably this bike could hold up to 300-320 lbs riders without a problem. So this makes the Diamondback Overdrive a very good choice for overweight riders who want to ride casually or even in the mountain.

I can even crown the Diamondback Overdrive 29er the best mountain bike for heavy riders!

For the price which is usually below $600, you get good quality components including Shimano drivetrain, reliable disk brakes, and excellent frame geometry for heavy riders.

Diamondback Overdrive 29er is definitely one of the best mountain bikes for heavy riders. If you want to read more about this bike, you can check our dedicated review here.

Pros:

  • Up to 250-275 lbs
  • Durable and fast 29-inch wheels
  • High-quality components
  • Tektro mechanical disc brakes

Cons:

  • Uncomfortable seat

Best Fat Tire Bikes for Heavy Riders

Mongoose Dolomite 26” Men’s Fat Tire Bike – Awesome fat tire bike for up to 350 lbs riders.

Another very interesting option I can recommend is to try a fat tire bike. At first, it may look odd to you but ride a fat tire bike can be really very fun.

The Mongoose Dolomite 26″ can hold riders which weight up to 350 lbs ( as per the many happy customers’ reviews on Amazon ). If you can’t find a hybrid or mountain bike suitable for your weight, maybe you should start with the Dolomite.

It’s fitted with huge super-sized 26″ X 4″ tires which are made for all-terrain riding. The braking is guaranteed by alloy 4″ wide wheel disc brakes which means that this bike is really well prepared for heavy riders.

Another great feature of this fat bike is the frame which is cruiser styled and makes it very comfortable for overweight bikers.

But the most impressive thing about the Dolomite is the price. On Amazon, you can find it for around $250, and sometimes even below $230 which is crazy for such a good bike. My only recommendation before buying a fat bike online is to try one in a local bike shop just to check if you like the ride.

Another small negative is that to inflate the tires you will need an electric or mechanical stand pump. In conclusion, I can say that the Mongoose Dolomite is a great fat bike for a big guy. You can have a lot of fun riding it while losing some weight.

The Dolomite is one of the best fat tire bikes for heavy riders in my humble opinion.

Pros:

  • Handles up to 350 pounds of riders
  • Disk brakes for stopping
  • Affordable fat-tire bike
  • Great ride on any terrains

Cons:

  • You need an electric pump for the tires

Framed Minnesota 2.0 Fat Bike Mens

This is another example of a great fat tire bike which is suitable for heavy guys or girls.  After a few months of experience recommending fat tire bikes to heavy riders, I can easily say that they are a perfect choice for everyone over 300 lbs.

Frames Minnesota 2.0 is 700$ bike which looks really rigid. The frame is made exclusively for this type of bikes, and the material used here is aluminum.  The frame is extremely well welded, and the overall quality looks impressive.

But the most exciting parts of every fat tire bike are as usual the wheels and the tires itself. The wheels are made of aluminum alloy single-walled rims which are 80 mm wide. Framed found a perfect solution for weight reduction, which is crucial for every fat tire bike.

They made some cutouts in the rims which look super cool. The good news is that the strength of the wheels is not compromised at all. This is very important for every heavy rider who is looking for a fat tire bike.

The bike is fitted with Minnesota Fat Tire 26″ x 4″ 72 TPI which is the most rigid looking tire I have ever seen on a bicycle. It looks like a motorbike made for a cross. I love it! t!

In conclusion, I have to admit that the Frames Minnesota 2.0 is an excellent fat tire bike for everyone who is over 300 lbs and wants to get in shape. The bike is great for riding off-road, and it looks incredible. I prefer Mongoose Dolomite for my first choice, but this one is the second best indeed.

Pros:

  • Cool looking fat-tire bike
  • Huge 80mm-wide wheels with Minnesota Fat Tire 26″ x 4″ 72 TPI tires
  • Easily can handle 300-350 pounds of weight

Cons:

  • Some components are not so high-quality
  • Not the cheapest bike on the list

Best Hybrid Bikes for Heavy Riders

Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike (700C Wheels)

Schwinn Discover is another great choice, and definitely one of the best bikes for over 200 lbs riders. It’s a hybrid bike made for comfort and leisure. Schwinn is known for its quality bikes which are very durable, and cheap.

Discover is a very good choice for commuting and training. It has a classic look, but uses some very modern components including Shimano twist shifters, Shimano read derailleur, ally front, and rear linear brakes.

With a comfortable frame made for city commuting, and front suspension fork you will get a very smooth ride. Schwinn Discover is suitable for overweight riders because it’s sturdy and durable enough.

You also get some features like fenders and a rear rack which is handy. This bike is made for daily commutes so it can easily be your mode of transportation around town.

What I really like about this bike is the seat which is extremely comfortable and very good for heavy riders.

I know that this is not the best looking hybrid bike, but you get a multi-purpose plus size bike for your money which will serve you for years.

Please note that the bike is not intended for heavy riders, but a 200-220 lbs person can easily ride it without any issues. I would recommend assembling the bike at your local bike shop despite the fact that it would cost you around $20-$30. You won’t regret it!

If you weight over 200-220 lbs you should probably look for the Schwinn Network 3.0 reviewed below, because of the 24-spokes wheels on the Discover.

Pros:

  • Durable hybrid bike
  • Very affordable
  • Comfortable ride
  • Great seat for heavy riders

Cons:

  • Not so good-looking bike
  • 24-spokes wheels

Best Tricycle for Heavy Riders

Raleigh Bikes Tristar 3-Speed Trike

This awesome adult tricycle made by Raleigh is a great option for people up to 300 lbs. ( as per the manufacturer ). It gives really a different perspective on cycling and I know many people who enjoy the comfort and the safety of the tricycle. These bikes are very good for seniors because the risk of falling is minimal.

Raleigh Tristar 3-Speed trike ( or tricycle ) is a super stable, 3-speed bike which won’t disappoint you. It’s fitted with 24″ front wheel and 20″ rear wheels for extra stability and comfort.

Despite the fact that it has two wheels in the rear, the trike is still very narrow to fit through an exterior door or between the cars in the traffic if needed.

The front fender will keep you clean and the huge seat will be very appreciated by the heavy riders.

Another great feature which I like about the Tristar is the rear basket which is huge. It can hold groceries which weight up to 45 lbs.

I do recommend the Raleigh Tristar for everybody who wants to get the freedom of the bike but with extra stability and comfort. It’s perfect for a neighborhood cruise or a run to the local farmers market, or maybe a nice ride in the park. If you are up to 300 lbs.

I do recommend though to assemble it at your local bike shop due to the complexity of the bike.

The only downside I can note of the Tristar is that it has only 3 speeds which and it is hard to pedal uphill. So maybe if you live in a very hilly area with a lot of hills you should look elsewhere.

If you want to check other recommended tricycles read our extensive review for the best adult tricycle. 

Pros:

  • Easily can handle up to 300 lbs
  • Very stable, and safe to ride
  • Narrow enough
  • Huge comfortable seat
  • Big rear basket for groceries

Cons:

  • Only 3 speeds to choose from

Best Road Bikes for Heavy Riders

Pure Cycles Classic 16-Speed Road Bike – Awesome Road Bike for Overweight Guys 

This awesome road bike made by Pure Cycles is perfect for heavy riders for some very good reasons. First of all the frame is 4130 Chromoly Steel which ensures the longevity of this bike. It makes it perfect for beginners too.

It has 32 spoke wheels which is very good news for the overweight guys because this way the bike can hold up to 250-300 lbs without issues.

The design of the handlebars is a classic drop bar which is very nice for everyone who wants to ride a good, classic roadie. Pure Cycles Classic 16-Speed Road Bike as you can see from the name features 16 speeds with Shimano Claris STI shifters. 

The Hutchinson nitro II tires provide a very smooth roll and very responsive handling. It has front and rear alloy caliper brakes and 17mm deep-dish alloy rims with stainless steel spokes for heavy riders.

Unfortunately, there is one thing that you might need to upgrade straight away. You might find the seat quite uncomfortable especially if you are above 200-250 lbs.

My recommendation is to upgrade the seat with a comfortable one made for heavy riders.

To wrap it up I will say the Pure Cycles Classic 16-Speed is a very good, reliable and cheap road bike which is perfect for heavy riders. Because of the quality components, it can be good for beginners and for more experienced riders as well.

Pros:

  • Steel frame for longevity and durability
  • 32-spokes wheels
  • 16 speeds for any terrains
  • STI Shifters are great
  • Cheap enough

Cons:

  • The seat is not very comfortable
  • A little bit heavy because of the steel frame

Diamondback Haanjo 3

Diamondback Haanjo 3 is an extraordinary road bike that we at YesCycling love! We already included another Diamondback Haanjo model in our article about the best bikes for college as well.

But what’s so special about this bicycle? Well, let’s start with the claimed weight limit of 300 pounds – a very nice figure for a road bike indeed.

With a high-quality aluminum frame, and form, 700c wheels, and nice 37mm-wide tires you get a lot for your money.

Another great thing about this bicycle which a lot of big heavy riders praise is the relatively upright riding position you get even though you have a drop-bar. Diamondback decided to fit into this bike the Shimano Sora 2×9-speed drivetrain which is excellent for everyday use, especially for your long rides.

You get all the gears you will ever need, plus some great stopping power because this road bike is equipped with Tektro Lyra Flat Mount Mechanical Disc. As we know the brakes are super important for the heavy riders.

But what I really love about the Diamondback Haanjo 3 is that it’s now fitted with WTB Riddler Comp, 700x37c tires which are extraordinary for gravel and bike paths as well.

If you like the ride of the road bike, but you still need to get it out in the dirt then the Haanjo 3 is a great option for you.

Pros:

  • 300 pounds weight limit is great for a road bike
  • Fast enough because of the WTB Riddler Comp, 700x37c
  • High-quality components
  • Shimano Sora 2×9 is excellent

Cons:

  • New product without known issues yet

Bikes for over 400 lbs or even 500 lbs

If you are a big guy who weighs more than 400 lbs, then my suggestions above are not suitable for you. I would suggest buying a specially designed bike for super heavy people.

And the most popular place online for such bikes is Zize Bikes Store. You should check their website and see the category bikes for over 400 lbs. They even have category bikes for over 550 pounds, which is fantastic!

So if you are a very big guy or woman over 400 or 500 lbs you should definitely check Zize Bikes.

11 thoughts on “Best Bikes For Heavy Riders in 2019 – Buying Guide!”

  1. Have to say the section on wheel size is not accurate. 29” wheels are not better suited and more durable than 26”, as they are larger and therefore suffer greater flex. As a general rule, smaller wheels are stronger. However, good luck finding 26” wheels on anything other than a trials or dirt bike these days.

    If you want some good advice for heavier riders with regard to wheels, consider high spoke counts i.e. 32 and 36 hole wheels on mountain and road bikes that can take touring wheels. Also if you buy a stock bike the wheels will likely be rubbish, so consider some custom builds as they will last longer and ride better.

    Reply
  2. Your article helped decide on which bike will work for me and my weight. I used to ride but stopped due to some personal obstacles and now I’m trying to get back into shape and lose some weight for my kids. I appreciate good reads like this. Thanks!

    Reply
  3. Excellent resources for beginners as well as those who’ve been around. I just got back in the biking or wanted to go back to biking so I can lose weight but I’m 300 plus guy! Has been hard finding a bike that can withstand my weight so I can lose that weight. Thank you!

    Reply
  4. Worksman is a very good brand, they have several with high weight limits. US made is a plus! And not too pricey, either. It is definitely a heavier bike.

    Reply
  5. sorry, it was hardly a comprehensive analysis of bikes that can carry heavy riders. moreover, it is not a “complete buyers guide,” as the title states. interesting information, but reads more like a marketing piece for the few bikes that are covered. next time, please do reviews of at least 5 bikes in each category. the bikes you reference do not allow a buyer to compare bikes in a category. nice try but the article really misses the mark.

    Reply
  6. Sorry!
    29″ wheels are NOT stronger than 26
    talk to engineers. the bracing angle on a 26 is better.
    We sell three seat bikes made in the USA with 20″ wheels and they carry loads over 1/4 ton.
    20″ wheels are even stronger and please note the world’s fastest land speeds on a bicycle were on bikes consistently using 20″ wheels
    Looks like this was written by a newbie.
    We also sell Day 6 Bicycles that are specially made for 300 plus riders

    Reply
  7. I own a bike shop and have seen a few heavier people break spokes on wheels that aren’t durable enough to support their weight. I personally would not recommend putting a heavier person (say, over 200 lbs) on the Schwinn Discover, because of its low spoke count wheels – only 24 spokes per wheel! I’d recommend at least 32 spokes, but a wheel upgrade will cost almost as much as the bike in this case. Another thing to keep in mind that tires on less expensive bikes generally have a lower maximum pressure, and I’m not sure what the maximum PSI is on these tires, but probably around 60. This, in my mind, is not enough to support a heavier person. Upgrading the tires to something heavy duty, like the Schwalbe Marathon, is a great idea, and these have a maximum PSI closer to 100. Anyhow, just thought I’d put in my two cents’ worth.

    Reply

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