Can You Put Fat Tires On Any Bike

Can You Put Fat Tires On Any Bike

Yes, fat tires can be put on almost any bike. Fat tires can provide better traction and stability on various terrains.

When riding on sand, snow, or gravel, fat tires can help prevent sinking and offer a smoother ride. However, it’s important to consider the compatibility of the frame and fork with fat tires, as well as the necessary adjustments to the brakes and gear system.

Professional assistance may be required to ensure a proper fit and avoid any potential issues. With the right adjustments, fat tires can enhance the performance and versatility of your bike for off-road adventures.

Can You Put Fat Tires On Any Bike


Understanding Fat Tires And Their Benefits

Fat tires have gained popularity in recent years as more and more riders discover their unique advantages. These tires, characterized by their wide and robust design, offer a range of benefits that make them suitable for various riding conditions. Whether you’re a seasoned mountain biker or an urban commuter, understanding the benefits of fat tires can help you make an informed decision when choosing the right bike for your needs.

What Are Fat Tires And Why Are They Popular?

Fat tires are designed with a wider width than traditional bike tires, typically ranging from 3. 8 to 5 inches. This generous width provides several advantages, making fat tires popular among riders of all disciplines. Here are some key points to consider:

  • Increased floatation: The wider surface area of fat tires allows them to distribute weight more evenly, resulting in increased floatation. This makes fat tires an excellent choice for riding on soft surfaces such as sand or snow, as they provide better traction and prevent the bike from sinking.
  • Enhanced traction: The large contact patch of fat tires provides exceptional grip on various terrains, including loose gravel and muddy trails. The increased traction allows riders to maintain control and stability, even in challenging conditions.
  • Smoother ride: The extra volume of air cushioning in fat tires acts as a built-in suspension system, absorbing bumps and vibrations more effectively. This results in a smoother and more comfortable ride, minimizing fatigue during long-distance adventures.
  • Versatile performance: Fat tires are not limited to off-road or extreme conditions. They perform well in various environments, including urban settings. Their ability to roll over obstacles with ease and handle unpaved or uneven surfaces makes them an excellent choice for commuters encountering rough city roads or bikepacking adventures.

Exploring The Benefits Of Fat Tires For Different Riding Conditions

The versatility of fat tires extends to different riding conditions and purposes. Here are the advantages they offer in specific situations:

  • Off-road adventures: Fat tires excel in off-road environments, providing superior traction, stability, and maneuverability. Whether you’re exploring rugged mountain trails or tackling technical obstacles, fat tires offer a thrilling and reliable riding experience.
  • Snow riding: When it comes to snow riding, fat tires are a game-changer. They provide the necessary traction to navigate through soft snow, making them a popular choice for winter fat biking enthusiasts.
  • Beach cruising: Riding along the sandy shores becomes effortless with fat tires. Due to their larger surface area, fat tires prevent sinking into the sand, allowing riders to glide smoothly across the beach.
  • Urban commuting: Fat tires are not limited to off-road adventures; they have become a practical choice for urban commuting as well. Their ability to absorb bumps and handle diverse surfaces make them suitable for navigating through potholes and uneven city streets, offering a comfortable and enjoyable ride.

The Impact Of Fat Tires On Traction And Stability

One of the most significant benefits of fat tires is their impact on traction and stability. Here’s how fat tires contribute to better control:

  • Increased grip: The wider surface area of fat tires provides more contact with the ground, resulting in improved traction. This allows riders to tackle challenging terrains with confidence, even in sandy, snowy, or muddy conditions.
  • Stability on uneven surfaces: The larger and more supple volume of fat tires helps absorb unevenness on the trail or road, maintaining stability and reducing the risk of slipping or skidding, especially on loose or slippery terrain.
  • Confidence-inspiring cornering: With their increased grip and stability, fat tires offer enhanced confidence when cornering. Riders can navigate tight turns with ease, maintaining control and speed.

Fat tires offer a range of advantages that make them a popular choice for riders seeking improved traction, stability, and versatility in their biking experience. Whether you’re tackling challenging mountain trails, embarking on winter adventures, cruising along sandy beaches, or navigating busy city streets, fat tires provide enhanced performance and a smoother ride.

Bike Types That Can Accommodate Fat Tires

Fat tires have gained popularity in recent years due to their numerous advantages, from improved traction and stability to enhanced comfort and control. If you’re considering upgrading your bike with fat tires, you might be wondering which bike types can accommodate them.

In this section, we’ll explore different types of bikes and discuss their compatibility with fat tires.

Mountain Bikes: Can They Handle Fat Tires?

Mountain bikes are known for their off-road capabilities, designed to tackle rugged terrain and conquer challenging trails. So, can they handle fat tires? The answer is a resounding yes! Mountain bikes are a great choice for fat tire enthusiasts due to their robust and versatile nature.

Here are some key points to consider:

  • Mountain bikes typically have wider frames and ample clearance, allowing them to accommodate fat tires without clearance issues.
  • Fat tires offer enhanced traction and flotation, making them ideal for tackling loose dirt, mud, and snow often encountered on mountain trails.
  • With fat tires, mountain bikes provide a more comfortable and stable ride, absorbing shocks and vibrations that would otherwise be transmitted to the rider.

Road Bikes: Is It Possible To Put Fat Tires On Them?

Road bikes, designed for speed and efficiency on paved roads, aren’t particularly known for accommodating wider tires. However, it is still possible to put fat tires on road bikes with certain considerations. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Road bikes have narrower frames and limited clearance, making it challenging to fit fat tires. However, some road bike models come with wider clearance specifically designed to accommodate slightly wider tires.
  • While you may not be able to fit the same width as on mountain bikes, you can still opt for wider tires with a more substantial volume than traditional road bike tires.
  • Putting fat tires on a road bike will provide increased comfort, better grip on uneven surfaces, and improved stability, making it a viable option for riders seeking a smoother ride without sacrificing speed entirely.

Hybrid Bikes: Options For Adding Fat Tires

Hybrid bikes are the perfect blend of road and mountain bikes, designed for versatility and all-around performance. When it comes to adding fat tires to hybrid bikes, here are some considerations to keep in mind:

  • Hybrid bikes usually have wider frames than road bikes but narrower than mountain bikes, offering more flexibility when it comes to tire width.
  • While some hybrid bikes may lack the clearance necessary for extremely fat tires, many models can accommodate wider tires typically used on mountain bikes.
  • Upgrading to fat tires on a hybrid bike can improve traction, enhance shock absorption, and allow for more adventurous off-road riding while retaining the bike’s agility on paved surfaces.

Fat Bikes: The Ultimate Choice For Fat Tire Enthusiasts

For those dedicated to conquering any terrain, fat bikes were specifically designed to accommodate fat tires. These bikes are incredibly versatile and excel in various riding conditions. Here’s what sets fat bikes apart:

  • Fat bikes feature a wide frame and fork clearance, allowing them to easily accommodate the widest fat tires available.
  • The unparalleled width of fat tires maximizes flotation and traction, enabling riders to confidently navigate sand, snow, mud, and other challenging surfaces.
  • The increased tire volume provides superior shock absorption and a more comfortable ride, making fat bikes an excellent option for long-distance adventures or extreme off-road expeditions.

While different bike types have varying degrees of compatibility with fat tires, mountain bikes, road bikes with wider clearance, hybrid bikes, and dedicated fat bikes can all accommodate these wide wonders. Whether you’re seeking improved stability, enhanced traction, or an all-terrain experience, there’s a bike for you in the fat tire realm.

So, why not gear up and embrace the advantages these robust tires have to offer? Happy riding!

Factors To Consider Before Installing Fat Tires

Fat tires have become increasingly popular among cyclists in recent years, offering enhanced stability and traction on various terrains. If you’re considering installing fat tires on your bike, there are several factors to take into account. In this section, we’ll explore the key considerations you should ponder before making the switch.

Frame And Fork Compatibility With Fat Tire Sizes

  • Check whether your bike’s frame and fork are compatible with the sizes of fat tires you intend to install.
  • Not all bikes have sufficient clearance for wider tires, so it’s essential to ensure that your frame and fork can accommodate the increased width.
  • Fat tires typically range from around 3.8 to 5 inches in width, so make sure the bike’s frame and fork have enough clearance for your desired tire size.

Clearance Issues: Analyzing The Space Available For Fat Tires

  • Measure the available space between your bike’s frame and fork to determine if you have enough clearance for fat tires.
  • Thoroughly examine the areas around the tire, including the seat stays, chainstays, and fork blades, to ensure adequate room for the wider tires.
  • Be mindful of any components or accessories that may interfere with tire clearance, such as brakes, fenders, or the bottom bracket.

Wheel Size Considerations For Proper Tire Fitment

  • Take into account the wheel size of your bike when considering fat tire installation.
  • Different wheel sizes have different limitations and compatibility with fat tires. The most common wheel sizes for fat bikes are 26-inch, 27.5-inch, and 29-inch.
  • Ensure that the fat tires you choose are suitable for your bike’s specific wheel size to ensure proper fitment and optimal performance.

Potential Modifications Required To Accommodate Fat Tires

  • Some bikes may require modifications to accommodate fat tires.
  • One common modification is the widening of dropouts or installing wider hub axles to accommodate the increased width of fat tires.
  • Keep in mind that modifications can also affect other components, such as the brakes and drivetrain, so consult a professional bike mechanic for accurate assessment and guidance.

Before installing fat tires on your bike, it is crucial to consider factors such as frame and fork compatibility, clearance issues, wheel size considerations, and potential modifications required. By carefully evaluating these aspects, you can ensure a successful transition to fat tires and enjoy the benefits they bring to your cycling adventures.

Happy riding!

Steps To Put Fat Tires On A Bike

Thinking of upgrading your bike with fat tires? You’re not alone! Fat tires are becoming increasingly popular among cyclists due to their versatility and ability to handle various terrains. Whether you’re an avid mountain biker or simply looking for a smoother ride, swapping out your current tires for fat ones can provide a whole new cycling experience.

But before you dive into the world of fat tires, let’s go through the necessary steps to ensure a successful swap.

Assessing The Current Tire Setup And Deciding On The Desired Fat Tire Size

It’s crucial to start by evaluating your current tire setup and determining the desired fat tire size that will fit your needs. Here’s what you need to consider:

  • Take measurements: Measure the width and diameter of your current tires using a tape measure or consult the manufacturer’s specifications.
  • Analyze clearance: Assess the frame and fork clearance to see if there’s enough space to accommodate fat tires. Consider the maximum tire width recommended for your bike model.
  • Determine terrain: Think about the terrains you frequently ride on and choose a fat tire size that suits your intended usage. Smaller fat tires are ideal for mixed terrains, while larger ones are better suited for off-road adventures.

Evaluating The Compatibility Of The Bike Frame, Fork, And Wheels

Once you have decided on the desired fat tire size, it’s important to ensure compatibility with your bike’s frame, fork, and wheels. Here’s what you should do:

  • Check frame and fork compatibility: Certain frames and forks are designed to accommodate wider tires. Refer to your bike’s user manual or consult with a professional to ensure compatibility.
  • Assess wheel width: Confirm if your bike’s wheels can handle wider tires without compromising performance or safety. A wider rim width may be necessary to properly support fat tires.
  • Consider axle standards: Verify that your bike’s axle standards match those of the fat tires you plan to install. This includes axle diameter and width.

Choosing The Right Fat Tires For Your Bike

With the compatibility aspect covered, it’s time to choose the perfect fat tires for your bike. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Tire width: Depending on the terrain and your preferences, fat tire widths can range from 3 to 5 inches. Consider the trade-off between enhanced traction and increased rolling resistance.
  • Tread pattern: Evaluate different tread patterns based on the terrain you’ll be riding on. Choose tires with aggressive knobs for off-road adventures and smoother treads for mixed surfaces.
  • Tubeless or tubed: Decide if you want to go tubeless or stick with inner tubes. Tubeless setups offer lower tire pressures and enhanced puncture protection, but require specific rims and sealants.

Installation Process: Tips For A Successful Swap

Now that you have the right fat tires in hand, it’s time to install them on your bike. Here are some tips for a successful swap:

  • Gather the necessary tools: Ensure you have the appropriate tools such as tire levers, a pump, and possibly a tubeless setup kit if going tubeless.
  • Release air pressure: Deflate the current tires and remove them carefully using tire levers. Be cautious not to damage the rims or inner tubes.
  • Install the fat tires: Carefully align the fat tires with the rims and use tire levers to guide them onto the wheels. Make sure the tires are evenly seated.
  • Inflate the tires: Use a pump to inflate the fat tires to the recommended pressure. Double-check for any leaks and adjust the pressure if needed.
  • Test ride and fine-tune: Take your bike for a test ride to ensure everything feels secure and smooth. Pay attention to any adjustments needed, such as tire pressure or alignment.

By following these steps, you can successfully put fat tires on your bike and enjoy the benefits of enhanced traction, comfort, and versatility. Happy cycling!

Performance And Riding Experience With Fat Tires

How Do Fat Tires Affect The Bike’S Handling And Maneuverability?

When it comes to fat tires on bikes, one of the key questions that often arises is how they affect the overall handling and maneuverability of the bike. Here’s a closer look at what you need to know about the impact of fat tires on your riding experience:

  • Increased traction and stability: Fat tires offer a wider surface area, providing greater traction on various terrains such as sand, snow, and mud. This increased grip improves stability and allows for better control, especially when tackling uneven or slippery surfaces.
  • Enhanced shock absorption: The larger volume of fat tires enables them to absorb more shocks and vibrations from the road or trail. This results in a smoother and more comfortable ride, reducing the impact felt by your body.
  • Improved cornering ability: Fat tires have a wider footprint, which allows for more stability and better grip when cornering. This can give riders added confidence when navigating tight turns or challenging terrain.
  • Slower acceleration and increased rolling resistance: Due to their larger size and surface area, fat tires may result in slightly slower acceleration compared to narrower tires. Additionally, their increased rolling resistance can make pedaling more challenging, especially on flat or paved surfaces.
  • Weight consideration: It’s important to note that fat tires are generally heavier than traditional tires. While this extra weight may not hinder all riders, it could affect those who prioritize speed and performance over all-terrain capabilities.

Comparing The Performance Of Fat Tires On Different Terrains

Fat tires excel in various terrains, but their true potential shines in specific environments. Here’s a breakdown of how fat tires perform on different surfaces:

  • Sand: Fat tires are particularly effective on sandy terrain. The wider surface area prevents the tire from sinking into the sand, providing better traction and control.
  • Snow: Fat tires are designed to tackle snowy conditions with ease. The increased width allows for better flotation, preventing the bike from sinking into the snow and maintaining stability.
  • Mud: When it comes to muddy trails, fat tires are a game-changer. Their wider knobs and larger surface area dig into the mud, providing grip and preventing excessive slippage.
  • Rocks and roots: Fat tires offer excellent shock absorption on rocky and rooty surfaces, enhancing your riding experience by minimizing vibrations and maintaining control.
  • Pavement and gravel: While fat tires can handle pavement and gravel, their performance may be compromised due to increased rolling resistance and slower acceleration. Traditional tires may be more suitable for these surfaces.

Ride Comfort And Stability: The Impact Of Fat Tires

Fat tires significantly impact the ride comfort and stability of a bike. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Smoother ride: The larger volume of fat tires allows for better shock absorption, resulting in a smoother and more comfortable ride. This is particularly noticeable when riding over rough or uneven terrains.
  • Improved stability: The wider surface area of fat tires provides increased stability by offering a larger contact patch with the ground. This stability makes it easier to maintain control, especially when riding at lower speeds.
  • Cushioned impact: Fat tires are excellent at cushioning impacts from bumps and uneven surfaces. This can reduce strain on your body, allowing you to ride for longer periods without excessive discomfort.
  • Reduced fatigue: Thanks to their shock absorption capabilities, fat tires can reduce rider fatigue. With less impact and vibration reaching your body, you can enjoy longer rides with minimal muscle fatigue.
  • Adjustable tire pressure: Another advantage of fat tires is the ability to adjust the tire pressure for different terrains. Lowering the tire pressure increases the tire’s contact patch, enhancing traction and improving ride comfort even further.

Fat tires have a substantial impact on a bike’s handling, maneuverability, performance on various terrains, and overall ride comfort. While they provide excellent traction, stability, and shock absorption in certain environments, it’s important to consider the trade-offs, such as slower acceleration and increased rolling resistance on smoother surfaces.

Understanding these factors will help you determine whether fat tires are the right choice for your biking adventures.

Maintaining Fat Tires On Your Bike

Tips For Keeping Fat Tires In Optimal Condition

Fat tires can provide a whole new level of fun and excitement to your biking experience. Whether you’re hitting the trails or cruising around the city, the wide and grippy nature of fat tires can make any ride more enjoyable.

However, like any other component on your bike, fat tires require regular maintenance to ensure they perform at their best. In this section, we will explore some essential tips for maintaining fat tires on your bike.

Proper Tire Pressure: Finding The Sweet Spot

Maintaining the right tire pressure is crucial for optimal performance and longevity of your fat tires. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  • Check the manufacturer’s recommendations: Fat tires have specific pressure ranges recommended by the manufacturer. Refer to the sidewall of your tire or the product manual to find the ideal pressure range.
  • Invest in a reliable pressure gauge: To accurately measure your tire pressure, consider investing in a quality pressure gauge. This will ensure you maintain the desired pressure consistently.
  • Maintain the sweet spot: Over or under-inflated tires can negatively affect your ride quality and traction. Regularly check and adjust the tire pressure to keep it within the manufacturer’s recommended range.
  • Consider riding conditions: Adjusting tire pressure based on the terrain and weather conditions can enhance your riding experience. Lower pressures provide better traction on loose surfaces, while higher pressures are ideal for smoother surfaces.

Fat Tire Maintenance: Rotating, Cleaning, And Inspecting

Proper maintenance can significantly extend the lifespan of your fat tires. Here are some essential tips:

  • Regularly inspect your tires: Before every ride, visually inspect your fat tires for any signs of wear, cuts, or punctures. Remove any debris stuck in the treads to prevent potential damage.
  • Rotate your tires: To ensure even wear and prolong the lifespan of your tires, consider rotating them regularly. This involves swapping the front and rear tires, as well as interchanging the left and right sides.
  • Clean your tires: Fat tires can accumulate dirt, mud, and grime during your rides. Cleaning them regularly with mild soap and water can help prevent build-up and maintain optimal performance.
  • Protect against sun damage: Exposing your fat tires to prolonged sunlight can lead to premature degradation. Store your bike in a cool and shaded area or use protective covers when not in use.

By following these tips for maintaining fat tires on your bike, you can ensure they remain in optimal condition for your rides. Remember, proper tire pressure and regular maintenance are key to maximizing the performance and lifespan of your fat tires.

Potential Limitations And Drawbacks Of Fat Tires

The Added Weight And Its Impact On Speed And Maneuverability

Fat tires are known for their significant width and bulk, which results in added weight when compared to traditional bike tires. While fat tires offer numerous benefits, there are a few limitations to consider. Here are the key points regarding the impact of added weight on speed and maneuverability:

  • The extra weight of fat tires can affect the bike’s overall speed and acceleration. The increased rolling resistance makes it harder to gain and maintain momentum, especially on flat surfaces.
  • Climbing steep hills can also be more challenging due to the extra weight. Riders may need to exert more effort to conquer inclines, causing a decrease in speed.
  • Fat tires can impact maneuverability, making it harder to navigate sharp turns and agile maneuvers. The wider profile of the tires may limit the bike’s ability to respond quickly to changes in direction.

Limited Availability Of Fat Tires In Certain Sizes Or Brands

When considering putting fat tires on any bike, it is essential to note that there may be limitations in terms of availability. Here are the key points regarding the limited availability of fat tires:

  • Fat tires are not as widely available compared to traditional bike tires. While their popularity has increased in recent years, they may still be harder to find at local bike shops.
  • Certain sizes or brands of fat tires may have even more limited availability. It’s crucial to do thorough research and check if the desired tire size or brand is readily accessible in the market.
  • Due to limited availability, the pricing of fat tires can sometimes be higher compared to other types of tires. This should be considered when budgeting for any potential tire upgrades.

Compatibility Restrictions With Bike Components

Another factor to consider when contemplating fat tires on any bike is the potential compatibility restrictions with bike components. Here are the key points to be aware of:

  • Switching to fat tires may require additional modifications to the bike’s frame and fork to accommodate the wider tires. It’s essential to consult with a professional or refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines for compatibility information.
  • Bike frames with limited clearance may not be suitable for fat tires. The wide dimensions can cause clearance issues, resulting in tire rub against the frame or fork.
  • Additionally, other bike components, such as brakes and wheelsets, may also need to be upgraded or adjusted to ensure proper compatibility with fat tires. Compatibility concerns can add to the overall cost of the tire conversion.

By considering the potential limitations and drawbacks of fat tires, you can make an informed decision about whether they are suitable for your bike. Despite these limitations, fat tires still offer several advantages that may outweigh their drawbacks for certain riding styles and terrains.

Conclusion: Assessing The Feasibility Of Putting Fat Tires On Any Bike

Is it possible to put fat tires on any bike? That’s a question many bike enthusiasts may have when looking for an upgrade. In this section, we will assess the feasibility of putting fat tires on any bike and explore alternative options for riders seeking similar benefits without fat tires.

Summarizing The Considerations And Steps Involved

To determine if your bike can accommodate fat tires, there are a few key considerations to keep in mind:

  • Frame clearance: Check the clearance between your bike’s frame and the tires. Fat tires are significantly wider than traditional tires, so you need to ensure that there is enough space to fit them without any interference or rubbing.
  • Wheel width: Fat tires require wider rims to provide proper support. If your bike’s current wheels are too narrow, you may need to invest in wider rims to accommodate the fat tires properly.
  • Fork and rear dropout spacing: Fat tires often require wider fork and rear dropout spacing to fit properly. Make sure that your bike’s frame is compatible with the wider spacing requirements before considering fat tire installation.
  • Brake compatibility: Verify if your bike’s brakes can accommodate the increased tire width. Fat tires may require different brake calipers or adapters to ensure proper clearance.

Determining the feasibility of putting fat tires on your bike involves assessing all these factors and making any necessary modifications to ensure a safe and functional fit.

Exploring Alternative Options For Riders Seeking Similar Benefits Without Fat Tires

While fat tires have become popular for their various benefits, such as increased stability and better traction, they may not be suitable for every bike. If your bike cannot accommodate fat tires or if you prefer to explore alternative options, consider the following:

  • Wide hybrid or gravel tires: Upgrading to wider hybrid or gravel tires can provide improved stability and traction without the extreme width of fat tires. These tires offer a good compromise for riders seeking enhanced performance on different terrains.
  • Tubeless tires: Switching to a tubeless tire setup can offer some of the benefits of fat tires without the need for a significant bike modification. Tubeless tires allow you to run lower tire pressures, resulting in increased traction and a smoother ride.
  • Suspension upgrades: Upgrading your bike’s suspension system can help improve ride comfort and provide better shock absorption on rough terrains. This can be a viable option for riders seeking enhanced performance without the need for wider tires.

Explore these alternative options based on your specific needs and preferences, keeping in mind the type of terrain you ride on and the benefits you are looking to gain from your bike upgrades.

As you consider whether to put fat tires on your bike or explore alternative options, remember to weigh the feasibility, costs, and potential benefits for your specific riding style and needs. By assessing these factors and understanding your options, you can make an informed decision that enhances your biking experience.

Frequently Asked Questions For Can You Put Fat Tires On Any Bike

Can You Put Fat Tires On Any Bike?

Yes, fat tires can be installed on most bikes as long as they have enough clearance in the frame and fork.

What Are The Benefits Of Using Fat Tires On A Bike?

Fat tires offer great traction, stability, and cushioning, making them ideal for riding on diverse terrains such as sand, snow, and rocky trails.

Do Fat Tires Affect The Speed Of A Bike?

While fat tires may slightly decrease speed on smooth surfaces due to increased rolling resistance, they excel in off-road conditions and provide a more comfortable ride.


Adding fat tires to any bike can provide a range of benefits, including improved stability and traction on various terrains. Whether you have a mountain bike, a road bike, or a hybrid bike, there are options available to accommodate fat tires.

However, it is important to consider the compatibility of your bike frame and fork with fat tire sizes, as well as the clearance needed for the wider tires. Furthermore, it may be necessary to make adjustments to your bike’s components, such as the brakes and gears, to ensure compatibility and optimal performance.

Consulting with a professional bike mechanic or doing thorough research can help ensure a successful conversion. Ultimately, with the right considerations and modifications, you can enhance your riding experience by putting fat tires on your bike. So, don’t limit yourself – explore the possibilities and embrace the versatility that fat tires can offer.

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