A thread over on the SS/Fixed Gear forum is gathering information about fixed gear riders.
No one over 50 has replied to that thread that I can see. Any fixed gear riders out here in 50+?
I used to ride a fixed gear. Those were simpler days and the training for racing was better, but now I'm into comfort. Hmm, I should reconsider setting up a fixed gear bike. It's just that with hills, you're either over geared going up or under geared coming down. I'm not sure that my knees can take it any more.
Hello......I'm fifty. I've got eight bikes, of which only three are equipped with derailleurs.
Last edited by roadfix; 10-21-04 at 09:50 PM.
I like my gears and my hills too much for that. Also, I consider a freewheeling bike with a choice of gear ratios to be much safer in traffic. However, I wouldn't mind owning one bike with a Sturmey-Archer ASC 3-speed fixed gear hub. http://sheldonbrown.com/asc.html
"Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
Capo [dschaw'-poe]: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger, S/N 42624
Peugeot: 1970 UO-8, S/N 0010468
Bianchi: 1981 Campione d'Italia, S/N 1.M9914
Schwinn: 1988 Project KOM-10, S/N F804069
I ride fixed gear about 25% of the time. (I am 60)
Ride to eat, eat to ride
Im seriously considering building a fixie out of some spares I've got kicking around ,I used to ride one back in the late 50s , realy good fun !!But I think it will have to be fairly low geared for my legs now !
dont worry be happy ????
I'm probably going to convert one of my old bikes to fixie
(If I can bring myself to tearing it down its original equiptment)
and I'm over 50.
I've just acquired a fixie back wheel and plan to install it on an old Chiorda bike I have. It'll probably turn out to be a winter project.
58 yrs. old and riding a fixie for 10 years now. In this area there are several of us "oldsters" (45 to 58) that ride fixies from time change to time change during the winter months. We find it builds body heat quicker and forces us to retain the heat for the duration of a 2 - 4 hour ride.
I'm 55 and two years ago converted my two geared bikes to fixie. I live in a hilly area, on the edge of a national park. I do not have to be concerned with city traffic, which may require quick responses due to opening doors etc. Animals are the only concern, especially in the low tourist times.
I maintain a cadence of around 95 on the flats. The highest cadence downhill was 168 ( for about 15 seconds.) On the uphills, I try and target an rpm, and avoid going under it ( usually 42 on the long climbs.) Any less than that and I find I am labouring, but there is only one series of hills that puts me below 42 rpm. for any length of time, and it is 21/2 half hours away from here.
I am concerned about the knee damage thing. There was an article in Bicycling mag. about osteoperosis being hastened by normal cycling. I think the lesson was that more weight-bearing activities ameliorate that negative effect. I have the idea that lower cadence climbing may be in this category, although it may be, coincidentally, negative to the extent that it overtaxes the knees. Running, although a weight bearing exercise , is often also critisized for the damage that it may do to the knees. All that I can report is that when I go into a dormant mode in the winter with very little exercise I have become aware of the aging of the skeleton, in the summer with lots of fixed biking, the joints do not complain.
I have only been on a geared bike afew times since converting to fixed, and am not inclined to go back. It feels like there is less control, and too much reliance on brakes with the geared bike, especially for winter riding.
Fixed-gears have made me a much better cyclist on the flats where I was inclinded to be lazy and get into a pedal/coast/pedal/coast mode. That option is simply not available now. The downhills have allowed me to experiment with much higher cadence than I have otherwise attempted. With the uphills, you mentally anticipate the hill and approach it positively to attain the crest without undue duress, instead of the "Oh no, not this again", rapid downshifting that I used to do at the bottom of a hill on a geared bike. I also like the quiet, when a bear or deer is near the road, I pedal softer, and do not scare the animals away with that horrible clicking sound ( although this can be avoided by not freewheeling on a geared as well.)
If you are considering fixed, do not clean the chain with the wheel turning on a stand. Without the intervention of a freewheel between the sprocket and the chainring, the entire drive train should be approached with the same caution as any other piece of machinery in motion.
Sorry for the long post.
Yes I have a wonderful fixie that I built from a lugged steel Masi frame. I enjoy riding it as much as any other bike I own. I love the simplicity of it and the quietness too. I am 55 and I don't race, so I wouldn't call it a training bike but I do get a better workout when I ride it. Unfortunately I do not get to ride it as much as I may want as I don't like to ride it with groups. On club rides I have taken it a few times but it is sometimes difficult to keep up with my peers when they are riding geared bikes. Plus my wife loves to take out our tandem to club rides, which is another excuse for not riding the fixie.
Fortunately I live in Florida, where it is generally pretty flat, so one gear works on most of my JRA neighborhood rides. Surprisingly, there are some hills not too far from Orlando where riding the fixie would be virtually impossible. Since I am able to ride 12 months a year, I usually get in about 8000 miles a year. About 300-500 are on my fixed gear.
I'm a couple of years shy of 50 (46), but I started riding fixed gear earlier this year. I've ridden 2500 miles plus fixed this year, mainly commuting, but there's several metric centuries and one 80 miler in there, too. I've had none of the problems people worry about (knees and such). I think the key is to not gear the bike too high. Both of my fixies are geared at 65", and I find that a great compromise for me. I learned a long time ago that spinning a lighter gear is a knee saver. When climbing, it's all about technique. Just because you ride a fixed gear, it doesn't mean you have to risk your knees. Remember, cyclists rode fixed gear long before derailers (sp) came along, and those guys did some amazing things. You don't have to impress anyone but yourself. I'm planning on doing a full brevet series next year fixed, and not worried about it in the least.
A group of us here in southern AZ got together for a fixed gear ride a couple of weeks ago, and we had a blast. Out of 5 guys are over 50, then me @ 46, and one 36 yo youngster.
Read all about it here:
Oh, and my geared bikes just hang on the wall these days, gathering dust!
Karl in Tucson
I am converting a Panasonic road bike to a fixed currently but haven't rode the bike yet. I had a lot of spare parts laying around so I haven't had to invest much but time. I'm 51 and have been riding for 20 years but this is new ground for me. I rode a 53x16 on my road and it seemed to be a place to start but it's a learning curve for me. Is it OK to use a quick release or should I find a solid axel? The hub is a shimano ultegra laced to a 36 hole wheel.
My main ride is a high wheel bike. I ride an RBR 48" reproduction to save wear and tear on my original wheel. I also ride one of my old safeties once in a while.
Get outta town! You actually log miles on one of those?Originally Posted by Ordinary
What are they like on hills? I've always wondered.
A QR works fine, as long as you can tighten it REAL tight. The common recommendation is to use ony an older steel QR. That's what I use on my Nishiki, and the wheel has never slipped.Originally Posted by roscoe50
Well I'm a 60Y.O. Grandma who ride her fixed gear bike to work and back everyday. I just love my commute is about 12 miles a day with a few minor hills.
I am 50 female and I ride my fixie when I'm not racing my road bike. I love riding fixed on singletrack its the best experience.
I just converted a Centurion 12-speed to SS/fixed gear. I rode it as a single-speed for a few times, then flipped the wheel over and tried fixed gear. It's a whole different experience, for sure, and I have now figured out how to get on and off without any problems (I left both brakes on, as you can see.). As I don't plan on doing any serious climbing with this bike, I geared it high 52x17, which with 700 wheels is 84 gear inches. As soon as the weather here in Colorado permits, I plan on taking a ride with my son who only rides fixed gear bikes. By the way, I am 64.Originally Posted by Moonshot
I ride a 91 GT 24" SS cruiser.
I got the first geared bike of my life a couple of weeks back. The simplicity of the SS is perfection but the gears are pretty cool too.
I guess I just like them both!
Misread the thread, it was getting late! The cruiser is SS, not fixed.
I ride a fixed gear.... it's called a track bike and mine is a 2003 Pista Concept. I am a CAT-4 on the velodrome with a couple of silver and bronze medals for the effort. Maybe this season will be gold. Anyone that says that you can't race when you are over 50 is down right dumb!!!
In the 50s I used to ride a fixed over all types of terrain and now I'm about to buy a Bianchi Pista, having been persuaded not to convert my Vintage Maclean to fixed. I used to use a 69" gear for training and 82" for time trials. I am 64.