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Old 09-25-05, 09:32 AM   #1
Baggsy
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How many of us ride fixed?

As of last Thursday and a fine young man in Ft Collins willing to part with it, I have become the proud new owner of a fixed gear. They are few and far between in this part of the country, and that was part of the allure I think. But I can tell you right now, they are a kick in the a$$! I took it out for a 15 mile loop last night, and felt like I had put in 30 at the end of it. I learned what a "controled-descent" really means, and am finding muscles I didn't know I had by slowing with the pedals. Now I have a whole passle of other bikes, but this one is closest to the garage door for whatever reason. I'm commuting on it, doing my road miles, pleasure cruising, and basic errand running. It's like learning to ride again. Anyone else have one? Denver, you probably see quite a few down there, any thoughts or words of wisdom?
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Old 09-25-05, 10:15 AM   #2
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I misinterpreted the question. I ride fixed. I was fixed about twelve years ago, by a doctor who thought it was funny to say "Oops!" during the procedure. He actually said that! Anyway, I've been fixed for more than a decade. But -- that's not what you're asking. Sorry!

Sounds like you're having fun, and that's what counts!
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Old 09-25-05, 02:06 PM   #3
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I'm building myself a fixed currently from an old Panasonic road frame. I've not ridden a fixed since the 70's, but remember that it was LOADS of fun and LOTS of exercise! Post us a photo of your fix! We'd love to see it.
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Old 09-25-05, 02:18 PM   #4
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I am resisting the urge to build up a fixed gear on the cheap. It is all the rage on campus (University of Florida) right now. I see a lot of fixed gear bikes locked on the bike racks. It might be to this decade what the beach cruiser was to the 1980's.

The very worst offense I saw was a really nice old Trek 720 touring frame converted to fixed gear. What a waste! Somebody should be riding that frame with full panniers!
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Old 09-26-05, 03:30 PM   #5
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I have been riding a Bianchi Pista track bike for two years. It's the best bike I've ever owned and I commute 33 miles 3-4 times a week. It's twice the fun to ride and it's especially good in traffic. Riding fixed will greatly increase your ability to accelerate and they are very manuverable.
Riding a track bike is one of those experiences that is very hard to describe. You have to ride a fixie to really get it.
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Old 09-26-05, 07:46 PM   #6
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I have been riding a single speed/fixed gear bike since the 9th of this month. It has a flip flop rear hub with a 16 tooth fixed cog on one side and an 18 tooth freewheel on the other. I am slowly building the confidence to ride the fixed side more often. Starting and stopping are still difficult but I am getting the hang of it. I can definitely tell the difference in how much more efficient the fixed cog is in transferring the power to the ground. This bike is very light and quiet and is a pleasure to ride when there are no long or steep climbs and the weather is dry.

PICTURES

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Old 09-26-05, 08:54 PM   #7
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It's great to jump on an old track bike and go for a ride. Pure racing machine. Don't you just hate it when you 'stop peddling' and get a very abrupt reminder that you are no longer on your road bike!
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Old 09-27-05, 03:36 AM   #8
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Dog! That is a sweet looking ride you have there! I am envious as mine looks like an old couch compared to yours. Where did you get it? Looks to be as nice a one as I've ever seen (but that's only been two others...)

Gary, I hear ya on the 'pure racing' side. I've had mine less than a week but ridden, commuted, erranded exclusively on it. And I am hooked I think. Last weekend I did the 15 mile loop Saturday, and Sunday I did a 20 miler with a few hills. I've discovered muscles in the front of my leg that I didn't knew existed (painfully so!). But I can't stay off it. Last night I went to the bicycle graveyard to get a brake cable hanger for an old Flandria I found. I jumped on the old Varsity as it has a rack and I can pack tools as well as plundered goods back on it. I thought it was broke! I slowed pedaling expecting it to slow down, and it just kept rolling? It startled me. I'm getting used to the control it gives you...leg speed directly related to ground speed. I've got an old KHS I'm thinking about converting...Appears the fixed are worth more than just the old 10 speeds they start out as, so I have visions of riches and glory. And I dream at night of myself in NYC packing important legal documents and a 1/2 pound of Ganga to the place on 52nd street. Ahhh, to be young again...
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Old 09-27-05, 02:59 PM   #9
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WOW, Dogbait! You been channeling Sheldon Brown? I like the sprung saddle just for the contrariness of it. You go dog!
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Old 09-27-05, 03:53 PM   #10
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Building a ss/fixed on an old road frame is my winter project thanks to Bike forums and the Fixed Gallery
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Old 09-27-05, 05:25 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveTaylor
Building a ss/fixed on an old road frame is my winter project thanks to Bike forums and the Fixed Gallery
Me too! Me too! I've started with an old, garage-sale Panasonic road frame, stripped the braze-ons with a file, and have stripped most of the old paint by hand. I'm ready to hang & spray now, & will post photos when she's up & running!
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Old 09-27-05, 06:42 PM   #12
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Baggsy,
Far Horizon,
I bought the frame and fork on ebay for $52 and all of the other parts are new except for the pedals which I had two pair of from the "old days". I first got excited about building a single speed by reading some of Sheldon Brown's articles on the Harris site and I bought the saddle, crankset and freewheel from Harris. The rest of the parts were from ebay and other online sources. The saddle is very comfortable and suits the more upright riding style this bike was built for. This is the first bike I have built from the "ground up" and could not have done it so easily without the help of Sheldon Brown's site, the Park Tool site, the BF Singlespeed/Fixed forum and the Fixed Gear Gallery forum.
Although I have been riding this bike with the 18 tooth freewheel daily since Sept. 9th, today was my first long ride using the 16 tooth fixed cog. My usual 15 mile loop with coffee stop is mostly rural with 2 miles on a busy highway, 1.5 mi. through the "city" and the rest is country and mostly flat. Judging from the way my legs feel, I would say the exercise benefit per mile is about twice as much with the fixed cog..... that thing just doesn't let you slack off. Nor does it care about the wind. If you want to rest, you stop and get off
Once I am sure that this frame is the right size for me, I plan to take it in to a local shop for a real paint job... red, of course.

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Old 09-28-05, 10:42 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baggsy
As of last Thursday and a fine young man in Ft Collins willing to part with it, I have become the proud new owner of a fixed gear. They are few and far between in this part of the country, and that was part of the allure I think. But I can tell you right now, they are a kick in the a$$! I took it out for a 15 mile loop last night, and felt like I had put in 30 at the end of it. I learned what a "controled-descent" really means, and am finding muscles I didn't know I had by slowing with the pedals. Now I have a whole passle of other bikes, but this one is closest to the garage door for whatever reason. I'm commuting on it, doing my road miles, pleasure cruising, and basic errand running. It's like learning to ride again. Anyone else have one? Denver, you probably see quite a few down there, any thoughts or words of wisdom?
I built a fixie about three months ago from a Centurion road bike and ride it all the time. I had Scott Taylor at Salvagetti Bicycles in Denver build me a set of large flange Sun wheels with a flip-flop hub and 17 tooth cogs on both sides. I added in-line brake levers (I'm too old to ride brakeless), Shimano 105 brakes, Shimano 105 pedals, and a nifty White Selle Italia seat. Other than those modifications, the bike is stock. I removed the small chainwheel and put the large chainwheel in its place, which gives perfect chain alignment. The resulting 52/17 arrangement is admittedly high, but on the other hand I can handle downhills usually without braking. And yes, fixed gear bikes are both a lot of fun and provide at least twice as much exercise as a road bike for the same distance.

It's raining here today, but I'll post some photos when the sun comes out.

Jim

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Old 10-01-05, 09:59 PM   #14
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I basically ride my fixed in the off months and really enjoy the switch, I ride a 50/16 and it really makes me work on the hills. Like the simple and quite ride it provides.
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Old 10-03-05, 06:22 PM   #15
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I thought you were asking if we'd had vasectomies.
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Old 10-04-05, 11:54 AM   #16
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A quick update...I have become a convert of sorts it appears. After riding the fixed for two weeks straight, I jumped on my Jamis for a long training ride and found what I thought was a silent road bike was actually making enough noises to distract me from my normally calming ride. Now I see what other folks had been saying about fixed...it does get in your blood!
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