Mudguards are one of the most popular accessory types purchased when buying a bike. There are many brands that produce mudguards in various shapes and sizes. Many are plastic due to the materials durability throughout all seasons. Mudguards that are often fitted on Hybrids are made of a metal strip coated in clear plastic. This style of mudguard comes with struts or stays that bolt onto the frame to keep the guard rigid. These are also more expensive than the plastic style versions because of the materials used and the struts. These guards are made in this was so they cover more of the circumference of the wheel or tyre therefore preventing almost all splash and spray towards the rider.
The larger Mudguard brands are SKS, Crud and Zefal. Raleigh also offers some great products in both styles. Both of the styles mentioned above fit onto the frame. The Crud brand offers a style that fits onto the seat post and the underneath of the frame. These look a bit more aggressive on the bike as they sit further away from the wheel and they are quite wide. You can have them fitted or removed in a matter of seconds though. Newer brands like Mucky Nutz and Ass Saver offer mudguards in their simplest form. Simply a shaped piece of plastic that can clip under the saddle or forks. These are great for deflecting some of the spray but they don't prevent it all.
Mudguards for Road Bikes are more common in the winter. Some bikes are specifically made to take mudguards but the vast majority aren't. Crud however released their Race Blades a couple of years ago and these were designed to fit to the frame without fouling the tyre or the brake callipers. They do take a bit of setting up to get them spot on but once fitted they work brilliantly. Many road clubs now insist that its club members have mudguards fitted to their winter bikes to prevent spray whilst riding in the pack. Reducing this spray also means you don't get so much water and road grime up your back so hopefully your riding kit will last a bit longer. One new spring/summer mudguard for Road Bikes worth mentioning is the Ass Saver which is a thin piece of plastic that clips under your saddle rails and literally as the name suggests saves your ass from getting wet. They work incredibly effectively on road, hybrid and Mountain Bikes.
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