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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 01-18-07, 11:34 AM   #1
bdinger
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Clyde on a... SINGLE SPEED!?

Well, like the rest here, I'm a big guy. My size is measured by "mucho grande", and no matter how hard I try, I'll never be sub-200. But, I love cycling. Currently I live somewhere that is just too close for commuting (~4 blocks) via bike - it takes me all of 2 minutes .

However! In March I'm moving to a house about 2 miles from work. The commute is going to be NICE - all residential streets that are mildly, but not extremely, hilly. To put it mildly, I'm looking forward to it.

And I also like to get a workout in. 2 miles on my super-geared MTB will be.. easy . However, I was thinking of picking up a single speed. Maybe something pre-built like a Bianchi San Jose, or maybe picking up a Surly frame and doing my own build. Obviously the simplicity, reliability, and "romance" of single speed bikes also appeals to me or I wouldn't even be considering it .

So that's my question. Do any of you clydes have SS's? How do you like it?
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Old 01-18-07, 11:53 AM   #2
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I have 20 useless gears on my Stumpjumper. I've been rockin' the 46-17 for at least the last 5 months, and I love it. My legs are stronger, I've built endurance as well as brute-force strength, and I've chosen a gear that isn't killing my knees (bad family history with knee issues.)
Try not shifting for a while and see how you like it. If you're comfortable with your bike, check out a singlespeed conversion kit and save yourself the expense of a new bike (unless you just really want a new bike.) Maybe just get a new flip-flop built rear wheel, and a chain tensioner?

Sometime this year I'll be in the market for a new whip, and I'm looking at a singlespeed getup. I'm 248 right now, and I'll be around 230 at my optimal fitness; so it's not like I'm a lightweight, either. Strong wheels are the key. People like us, on a ss/fg rig, need something that's superstrong in the wheel/drivetrain department to put up with the beating we'll give it. Look at running strong wheels, and a strong crank with a large ring/cog combo to distribute force more evenly. (instead of a 46-16, run a 52-18: nearly the same gearing over more teeth, causing less stress at any one point.)
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Old 01-18-07, 02:40 PM   #3
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312lbs, riding a fixed gear. See my blog or fixed gear gallery link below. Its heavy, its reliable, and its FUN.
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Old 01-18-07, 07:15 PM   #4
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220 lbs on a fixie (click the IRO in my sig). Go fixie. It's funner and you'll never want to get off it.
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Old 01-18-07, 07:21 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jyossarian
220 lbs on a fixie (click the IRO in my sig). Go fixie. It's funner and you'll never want to get off it.
If it's a fixie w/out brakes on a steep DH, you CAN'T get off!
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Old 01-18-07, 07:31 PM   #6
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219 pounds and losing on an old Bianchi road bike converted to single speed. I'm too much of a wuss right now to go fixed, but SS is a blast.
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Old 01-18-07, 09:33 PM   #7
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300+ on a single speed roadie-
Spicercycles.com.. fixed me up good- with heavy duty spokes and alex rims- sweet ride..
use it for workout rides- during the summer- I was riding it 24 miles aday back roads through the sonoma wine country- best thing I ever did on a bike- switching to s/s..
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Old 01-18-07, 10:10 PM   #8
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238lbs on a 20" wheelbase, folding, singlespeed bike. It's my favorite ride!
Juan

http://img455.imageshack.us/img455/4...escentaxz2.jpg
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Old 01-18-07, 10:47 PM   #9
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Man, now I'm really leaning that way

Well, the San Jose is out, as the wheels are a very clyde UN-friendly 28 spokes. I think I may just pick up a Surly frame and do a build that way. Hrrrmmm....



Any recommendations on parts? I'd like to keep this as economical as possible, while also ensuring reliability.
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Old 01-18-07, 11:47 PM   #10
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these wheels will work:
32h Mavic CXP22 rims


http://shop.greatdealsonbikes.com/me...tegory_Code=TR

And I'm a clyde-light (<210) riding a fixie (with a front brake, thankyouverymuch), and it is a great commuter. Make sure you get a gearing that works with your area -- blown knees are no fun....
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Old 01-19-07, 01:17 AM   #11
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235+ now (and gaining, thanks) with two fixed gear bikes. I love it. Fixed isn't any 'tougher' than singlespeed, it's just more fun. Coasting's pretty good, though. And gears are good. Any bike is a good bike.

You will like singlespeed.

I'd get the San Jose and see if I could break the wheels. I might tighten all the spokes until the wheel tacos and then slack 'em off and squeeze each pair real hard first, though, just to give 'em a fightin' chance.

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Old 01-19-07, 08:04 AM   #12
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Well.. heh.. .I'm pretty sure I'll kill the 28 spoke wheels on it. I rode a Raleigh when I started biking, and lost two spokes on the 32 spoke rear wheel. Granted it was an old bike, and granted that was after 800+ miles with me on it. My current bike - Specialized Hardrock - got 700 miles on it from August - November and the wheels are as true as the day it rolled off the showroom floor. Just cheap 36 spokers with heavy-gauge spokes. I've been very happy with it, but it's not exactly a commuter.

(plus I really am trying to find excuses for another bike )

Anyway, I'm going to wait until the below zero spell ends here, then bust it back out. I'll see if I can find a combo on it that will emulate a singlespeed, and see if I can do it for the commute. I've spent most of the winter doing spinning classes at the YMCA, and have progressed quite well, making me hope that a SS would be just as fun. I dunno if I'm ready for a fixie yet, but I'm looking at flip hubs so I can have the option to try out when I'm feeling a little crazy .

Time to call my favorite LBS and inquire on their prices for the San Jose, and for Surly frames
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Old 01-19-07, 09:13 AM   #13
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I really like the San Jose too, but for me the Raleigh One Way is a more complete commuter. Plus it's got 32 spokes.

http://www.raleighusa.com/items.asp?deptid=5&itemid=349

The 925 is another good solution, and it's got 36 spokes. It was really popular for a while on the SS/FG board.

http://www.redlinebicycles.com/adultbikes/925.html
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Old 01-19-07, 09:17 AM   #14
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You won't be sorry. Single speed bikes (fixed gear included) are a lot of fun. Get something with a flip flop hub so that you can run it as a freewheel or fixed gear bike.
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Old 01-19-07, 10:29 AM   #15
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Oh man, both that Raleigh and that Redline are waaay too hot.

Any opinions on the Kona Paddy Wagon? Spec-wise it looks pretty darned sweet.

But man.. that Redline.. supersweet
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Old 01-19-07, 10:31 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdinger
Oh man, both that Raleigh and that Redline are waaay too hot.

Any opinions on the Kona Paddy Wagon? Spec-wise it looks pretty darned sweet.

But man.. that Redline.. supersweet
I don't think you will be disappointed by any of those three. I would test ride them all if you can. The major issue is the mustache bars on the 925. I love them, but other people find them far less comfortable.
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Old 01-19-07, 10:42 AM   #17
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Wow.. okay.. the price on the Redline is very budget-friendly. The guy at the LBS who I talked to on the phone actually rides his exclusively after he purchased in the spring, and had nothing but raves for it.

Darnit, I have a feeling I"m going to be $450 poorer in about a month.... hehehe
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Old 01-19-07, 10:44 AM   #18
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I love my SS, im 249lb.

I built up a SS on a 1992 Falcon road bike, again I love it light ,fun and much easier to pedal (even up hills)THAN MY 38 LB Surly XC full dressed commuter.

No Prob have fun

"John"
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Old 01-19-07, 11:50 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Stormcrowe
If it's a fixie w/out brakes on a steep DH, you CAN'T get off!
Skips and skids to get you down to where you can use your weight to hold the speed down to something controllable. But for me, I never take the brake (singular) off.

BTW, I have Deep V's which have held up to my weight and penchant for hitting potholes and jumping on and off curbs.
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Old 01-19-07, 12:14 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdinger

Any opinions on the Kona Paddy Wagon? Spec-wise it looks pretty darned sweet.
I have a Paddy Wagon frame/fork I built up. It rides like sweet honey. Quality paint job, welds. Smooth as buttah ride.

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Old 01-19-07, 01:12 PM   #21
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I got a Fisher Rig last fall. I LOVE it. I can use my weight and size and get great power. I upgraded the cranks to 180mm Primo Powerbites. Burly.
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Old 01-19-07, 01:32 PM   #22
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Wow, that Kona is hot.

But, pending a test ride, I think the Redline is "it". Called the LBS, the price is right AND the guy I spoke with owns one. He said he stopped riding everything else last spring and has been riding his 925 exclusively. I see similar everywhere I look. Only downside I see is some nagging about the spokes, but I"ll see if I can get 'em relaced with something nice and heavy.

If the test ride doesn't work out, that Kona just looks too damn hot. I'll head down to the Kona dealer (who also has Surly, and one very hot Moots fixie) and check those out.
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Old 01-19-07, 05:58 PM   #23
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Oh yeah....


Any Clydes riding a SS?


I got 3 rides right now, and 3 speeds.
Less maintenance than all the cables & doohickeys.
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Old 01-19-07, 06:47 PM   #24
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lubes: too damn hot. I'm definitely looking forward to it, found out tonight that the woman is even going to buy it for me.. sweet. I'll be getting mine in mid-Feb (no real rush, it's still pretty cold/nasty here).

And I know it's just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. THe Monocog, Bianchi W.U.S.S. and many others are calling my name.

Why are single speeds so damn hot? Gaah! My poor Hardrock is going to miss me!!
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Old 01-19-07, 06:58 PM   #25
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240 and tall.

Fixed gear: road bike, MTB, and beater errand bike
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