Originally Posted by dirtylaundry
I am going to undergo my first bike transformation project. I want to turn this vintage 70s road bike into a fixed gear bike. I know I am going to need a new chain and crank, but what else? What are the terms for these types of things? Also what are efficient handle bars for road cycling with a fixed gear. And one more - what would it be called to have a fixed gear that can coast (with handbrakes)?
A freewheeling one speed bike is called a single speed, not fixed. Fixed is when the there is no freewheel and whenever the rear wheel is turning, the cranks are turning. To change to a fixed, you will need a rear wheel with a track hub at minumum.
While all the hipsters have to have a fixed, I would suggest a SS. Since on a fixed gear, the cranks are always turning, if you go around a corner fast (which is the main purpose of cycling, in my humble opinion), there is a good chance of a pedal strike, where the pedal digs into the street and you crash. With a frewheel, you stop pedalling and there is no pedal strike.
To get a SS on the cheap, try this. Ride on the small chainring and find a cog on the back that you like. Then, remove the derailleurs front and rear and shorten the chain for the gear you have selected. There, you have a single speed for free. Not sexy, but perfectly functional.
Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace
1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
1988 Ducati 750 F1