Wheel skewers - up or down?

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New Member
I've noticed, when looking at other peoples bikes, that some people have their skewer levers pointing downwards.

I've always closed mine in the up position, usually running it parrallel to the fork/seat stay.

Is there any special reason why they're pointing them downwards - is it for quick wheel removal? (I assume this is only useful when racing?)


New Member
Deal, Kent
I would think downwards would be dangerous?
I have mine like you describe. Interestingly this question came up in 220 triathalon mag but this was related to aero dynamics and they recommended level with the road for best aerodynamics.

Amanda P

Legendary Member
Why would downward-pointing skewer levers be dangerous?

It's hard to think of any compelling reasons to have them in any particular position. I usually have mine close to the fork or to the chainstay and lined up with it, on the grounds that the vanishingly small chance of a tree branch or something getting hooked behind the lever and flicking it open is thus reduced.

Now watch someone come along and say they had a horrible accident because their levers weren't at exactly 38 degrees to the vertical...

Steve Austin

The Marmalade Kid
The old hope skewers could be knocked and would spin round, so it was quite important to place them so that if they did get knocked the frame/fork would stop them turning.

Shimano skewers are fine any angle though.
the rear for me is always in the gap between the chain and seat stay. the front horizontal


Senior Member
Parallel to the frame or fork - this minimises the possibility of them being knocked.


Well-Known Member
I've never met anyone who's had a problem with wheel skewers because of the way they were pointing and I've never seen any particular recommendations from wheel makers; so I have concluded it doesn't matter which way they face.


New Member
Front skewer rear facing, and slightly angled up from horizontal, rear skewer forward facing, and located between the angle of the seat and chain stay.
I agree to the parralel to the fork / stay.

I always try and place the end of the lever behind the fork or stsy to protect from snagging on obstructions or hazards.

Hence I have the lever on the non gear side of the rear and ensure the cam is behind the body of the QR on the front
Which beggars a new question.......................

Which side is the cam section on your front wheel?
I always understood that the way to do it was the front one; upwards and backwards along the parallel to the fork, rear one down and forwards below the chain stay.

The reasons not only are they protected by the fork or chain stay; but, if you're riding in a bunch, the front wheel is more likely to come close to/into contact with the back of some bodies rear wheel, which will be rising away from the road surface. Whilst your rear wheel is likely to come close to/into contact with the front of some bodies front wheel, which will be descending towards the road surface.

If the skewers are set up this way there is less chance that the other person’s spokes/wheel will get caught behind/by the skewer lever and hence less chance of an accident. :thumbsup:
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