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Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

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Old 08-13-08, 07:26 PM   #1
Phildo
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Single Speed distance frame/bike

I'm looking at getting a Monocog and switching out the chainring for more inches...it's hard finding a single-speed bike to use for centuries.

Question: Would this be stupid?

Question: Suggestions? (maybe search terms?)

Thanks.
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Old 08-14-08, 03:43 AM   #2
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How about a Salsa Casseroll frame? You can build it up as a SS/fixie, and it's got a road geometry rather than a twitchy track geometry.
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Old 08-14-08, 06:09 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Phildo View Post
I'm looking at getting a Monocog and switching out the chainring for more inches...it's hard finding a single-speed bike to use for centuries.

Question: Would this be stupid?

Question: Suggestions? (maybe search terms?)

Thanks.
I have a redline 925 I use for commuting and it would work well. It's about $500 and is already a single speed flip flop 700c bike with fenders. Great deal and a nice overall bike. I've not changed a thing on it and feel confident it could easily go the distance - it's a tough bike.

There are a ton of brands to look at and all would be better suited than the monocog, imo.

Jamis has a single speed road bike that is slightly higher end with a full carbon fork and 631? steel frame. I saw a guy ride it for over 400 miles about a month ago at a 24 hour race. he called it his 'go fast' bike while his redline 925, like mine, was the workhorse of the two.

Raleigh, Specialized, Trek, Giant, Cannondale, Surly Steamroller, Surly CrossCheck, Soma Delancy, Gunnar Street Dog among others - they all make single speed bikes that would work well at long distance. The Soma and the Gunnar are the nicest, imo, but also around $800 for the frameset. Gunnar Street Dog would be my choice if I were building up a single speed bike specifically for long distance riding.
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Old 08-14-08, 06:09 AM   #4
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How about a Salsa Casseroll frame? You can build it up as a SS/fixie, and it's got a road geometry rather than a twitchy track geometry.
They also come prebuilt as an SS with a pretty decent spec for not much $.
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Old 08-14-08, 07:05 AM   #5
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1981 World Tourist
converted to single speed..

I've done 2 metric centuries in the past month on them before moving to my road bike to ready for a true century.

here's her photo (she's got different handle bars now)

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Old 08-15-08, 11:40 PM   #6
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You might also look at the Bianchi SanJose, I changed the tires out for some 25 mm slicks and regularly take it on a loop through MD and Va involving lots of pavement with some dirt (c&o). It comes with some decent stock parts and the canti breaks and cyclocross tire clearance make installing fenders cake.
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Old 08-17-08, 10:25 AM   #7
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If you don't mind paying in Canadian dollars, maybe look at a Tweed (made by Steelwool).

They have an eccentric bottom bracket so you can switch it between single and geared a bit easier than other frames.

They don't cost as much as a Riv, but it actually looks as though the construction is on par with one.
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Old 08-19-08, 06:28 AM   #8
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salsa caseroll or surly cross check.
i have a cross check built as a fg.

looking at getting the wife a caseroll - but as a geared machine. i like that it can run gears, run fixed or ss, and has dropouts that can run an internal hub. plus fenders and wider tires.

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Old 08-19-08, 01:40 PM   #9
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Would this be stupid?
Not stupid, but if the bike is to be ridden primarily on paved surfaces there must be quite a few better choices out there.
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Old 08-19-08, 07:14 PM   #10
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id check out the soma delancy, http://www.somafab.com/delancey.html a guy from work just built one up and he loves it.

other than that masi makes a pretty cool steel single speed as a complete bike fairly cheap. http://www.masibikes.com/cycles/speciale_commuter.php
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Old 08-19-08, 11:09 PM   #11
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I've been riding my no-name fixed gear that I got on ebay for a month of long rides now without any problems. A few people on the fixed gear forums were bashing them, so I bought one to see how bad it is. No problems except the stock seat and handlebars so far. Those were only changed for comfort.
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Old 08-21-08, 10:13 AM   #12
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get a surly.
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Old 09-01-08, 11:29 PM   #13
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No it's not stupid and it's not hard either. I have done a few metric centuries on my 80's steel frame ss conversion. Just get a Brooks saddle and you will have no worries. A ss is the same as a road bike unless you have some big climbs, then it can get a little tricky. If I had to recommend a bike it would be the redline 925. It's the perfect commuter and it would work great on longer rides, and it's VERY reasonably priced.
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Old 09-02-08, 01:49 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsuru View Post
1981 World Tourist
converted to single speed..

I've done 2 metric centuries in the past month on them before moving to my road bike to ready for a true century.

here's her photo (she's got different handle bars now)

Beautiful bike. I have to wonder at your gearing. Do you have hills to climb? Looks like 50 or 52 by 16 or less there. Thanks.
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Old 09-02-08, 02:09 PM   #15
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It's a 47/16. Pretty good combo, did some pretty nasty hills with it (sloooowly). Just stand up and leeeeeeeeeft.... riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.... haha! I kept up with the group, finished a 100km ride first, no problem.

THEN, I went for 100 km with my roadie friend and it was a joke. I nearly died trying to keep up. When I switch out to a road bike, doing 75 miles, and keeping up, was significantly easier (though still an intense ride!)

So, I say, it depends on what you are trying to do... if you want to go long and pretty fast, I say go road bike, but if you are happy going a little slower, SS is great for any distance!

I love my Schwinn, but it's relegated to smaller radius city riding. My Kapu is my main ride now...
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Old 09-06-08, 09:18 AM   #16
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It's a great idea! I've never done a century on a fixed gear, but I did a half before I had done much road riding. The "fixed" drivetrain helps eliminate boredom in the flats.
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Old 09-09-08, 02:29 PM   #17
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I did the ms150 this year on a single speed(75 miles a day). it's a bottom of the barrel 80's fuji absolute. that I built up with a brooks saddle. the first day I beat my friends across the finish line by about an hour and a half(they were all riding geared bikes). I really didn't think it was that hard. Just put some thought into choosing the right gearing and it's a blast. Also getting use to riding single speed is also a factor. If I had to build another nicer single up for myself, I'd get a frame with touring geometry, put on a brooks, MKS touring pedals, and some bars with multiple hand positions with cork tape. good luck!!

it is rewarding, and fun.
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Old 09-09-08, 06:43 PM   #18
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I ride a KHS Flite 100 with 2 brakes. I have ridden a doublemetric century last year on itm, and las t weekend did the Civil War Century in Thurmont, Maryland on it. Lots of hills. I think you can do any ride you want on any fixie-- Mine has track geometry, and the 165 cranks, and I got up all the hills-- some were pretty tough. With the 48 x 17 gearing, I got up to 38 mph on the downhills (way too fast)...ended up using the brakes on the downhills, just to bleed off some speed.

train safe-
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Old 09-10-08, 08:46 PM   #19
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I had a Surly Steamroller for a while; it did the job. Handling was a little more nervous than I care for, but most bikes these days are that way. Fenders would have been tough, I think, if that matters to you. It's stiff and heavy, as are all the Surlys that I have seen. Price is right, though.

Put some serious thought into a bike like the pictured Schwinn. The sport touring bikes of the eighties have very nice geometry for general purpose LD bikes, and those long, sloping dropouts make possible a very nifty thing: a flip-flop hub with a four or five tooth difference between cogs. That way, if you are wasted in the last bit of the ride you have a bail out gear -- or a single cog freewheel for long downhills.

Have fun!
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Old 09-16-08, 05:48 PM   #20
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I've migrated to a Steamroller from a Trek5000. For me, going from a full carbon bike to steel was not all that comfortable. After sixty miles I am pretty beat up.
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Old 09-16-08, 05:51 PM   #21
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Light steel is very comfortable, IMO. Thick walled OS steel is like riding an I-beam, and that's one of the downsides of a Surly.
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Old 09-20-08, 02:37 PM   #22
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I love my Steamroller and it's great for riding long distances. I haven't done a century - yet - but 50 mile rides are nothing on this thing. Comfortable doesn't begin to describe it.
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