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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 09-06-05, 10:56 AM   #1
jbhowat
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Best setup for skidding?

Just curious. I'm talking about frame size, handlebar type, and height. Tires too.

I think right now I have a very difficult skidding setup. The steering is really twitchy (not just quick like a track bike, either- its weird). I have drop bars that are really low, with a longish stem. The frame is also too small for me by about a size, and on top of that it has a short top tube. The net result is that its VERY hard to get your weight forward to skid. What do you think is ideal?

High-ish cowhorns?
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Old 09-06-05, 11:02 AM   #2
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the longish stem should get your weight over the front enough, bullhorns may help a bit more. you just have to commit, get way over the front and lock your legs.
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Old 09-06-05, 11:05 AM   #3
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is it a conversion with a long wheelbase?

skidding is effortless on my pursuit bike but difficult on my friend's tourer conversion even with a small gearing.
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Old 09-06-05, 11:07 AM   #4
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oh, and more on topic... I think low to mid-height bullhorns make skidding easiest.
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Old 09-06-05, 11:08 AM   #5
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A rear brake and rub your rear tire with vasaline.
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Old 09-06-05, 11:23 AM   #6
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My set up isn't great for skidding either since i put drops on. Just hump the stem and hold on man, it'll work
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Old 09-06-05, 11:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ImOnCrank
Just hump the stem and hold on man, it'll work
I'm riding a roadie conversion with tallish gearing and a 27" rear tire, and I learned to skid on it. You've got to really have your crotch over the stem if you want any skidding action.

See how far forward you can lean without falling first, so you get used to it. Then try and skid. Butter.
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Old 09-06-05, 11:48 AM   #8
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I'm gonna write a book entitled, "The Mythical Fixie Skid". I'm sure it will be a best-seller.
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Old 09-06-05, 12:13 PM   #9
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I'd buy that for a dollar.
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Old 09-06-05, 02:09 PM   #10
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Why are people acting like this is a "how to skid" thread. Believe me, I know how to skid. I've had a couple of fixed gears. I've been riding my own for over a year, but I've ridden and practiced on other people's before that. The question stems from experience with different setups and while there has never been a bike that I couldn't skid (at least since I learned how to do it). However my current bike is pretty difficult. The long stem helps, but the stem is also really low in the headset. When I lean forward and lock my legs, my nuts are nowhere NEAR the stem, in fact the bars hit closer to my knees than my nuts. I could raise them I guess but I like the way my bike is setup (I currently have about 4-5in of drop from the seat to the tops of the bars.)
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Old 09-06-05, 02:21 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbhowat
Why are people acting like this is a "how to skid" thread. Believe me, I know how to skid. I've had a couple of fixed gears. I've been riding my own for over a year, but I've ridden and practiced on other people's before that. The question stems from experience with different setups and while there has never been a bike that I couldn't skid (at least since I learned how to do it). However my current bike is pretty difficult. The long stem helps, but the stem is also really low in the headset. When I lean forward and lock my legs, my nuts are nowhere NEAR the stem, in fact the bars hit closer to my knees than my nuts. I could raise them I guess but I like the way my bike is setup (I currently have about 4-5in of drop from the seat to the tops of the bars.)
I generally find that a longer wheel base helps. It's way easier to skid on my 54cm Steamroller than on my 51cm Debernardi. Bar/stem length isn't everything either, i find that a too-long setup on a too small bike makes things too unstable....I'd say non-dropped (level extension) bullhorns on a relatively short stem would probably my fave for skidding. It also has a lot to do with proper bike fit.
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Old 09-06-05, 02:31 PM   #12
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i find that when i ride a bike that's too small for me, i can pull much longer skids that i can on a larger bike. i'm pretty sure it's because i'm more horizontal since my upper body is much lower when i'm stretched out. makes sense.
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Old 09-06-05, 02:35 PM   #13
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Interesting. On my touring frame conversion, with a low gearing (44x18 on 27's), I have no issue skidding, and can even skid seated with almost no weight shift. On my other road conversion with steeper angles and higher gearing, I can barely skid. Hmm.
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Old 09-06-05, 02:52 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbhowat
Why are people acting like this is a "how to skid" thread. Believe me, I know how to skid. <snip>
Sorry about that. The OP talked about difficulty skidding, and thus, the leap was made to the Isle of Conclusions.

That said, I think following factors all make skidding harder (in no particular order):
1. Heavy rear wheel/tire/tube
2. Tall gearing
3. High speed
4. Short wheelbase
5. Short stem
6. Low bars
7. Sticky tires
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Old 09-06-05, 03:12 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aeroplane
Sorry about that. The OP talked about difficulty skidding, and thus, the leap was made to the Isle of Conclusions.

That said, I think following factors all make skidding harder (in no particular order):
1. Heavy rear wheel/tire/tube
2. Tall gearing
3. High speed
4. Short wheelbase
5. Short stem
6. Low bars
7. Sticky tires
Maybe I misattributed my problems skidding on the tourer... ?
Can't say I drew up a force diagram.
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Old 09-06-05, 03:12 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbhowat
Why are people acting like this is a "how to skid" thread. Believe me, I know how to skid. I've had a couple of fixed gears. I've been riding my own for over a year, but I've ridden and practiced on other people's before that. The question stems from experience with different setups and while there has never been a bike that I couldn't skid (at least since I learned how to do it). However my current bike is pretty difficult. The long stem helps, but the stem is also really low in the headset. When I lean forward and lock my legs, my nuts are nowhere NEAR the stem, in fact the bars hit closer to my knees than my nuts. I could raise them I guess but I like the way my bike is setup (I currently have about 4-5in of drop from the seat to the tops of the bars.)

OK.

The best setup for skidding:

Coaster Brake

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Old 09-06-05, 04:01 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carleton
OK.

The best setup for skidding:

Coaster Brake

HA! so true.
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Old 09-06-05, 05:24 PM   #18
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My 700c coaster brake bike is the skiddablest.

53cm Steamroller w/mustache bars.

Slides like a dream.
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Old 09-06-05, 05:30 PM   #19
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If the frame is much too small for you, that's probably most of your problem right there.
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Old 09-06-05, 05:30 PM   #20
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I would say to serve up the smallest frame that you can ride, some really long bullhorns and some big gears. Best skidder I've ever come across was riding a 50-19. Biddao!
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Old 09-06-05, 05:39 PM   #21
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i would say 50-19 is on the short end of the fixie gear spectrum...easy slidin... i find if you keep the gears around 70 gear inches..... its cake no matter what the bike
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Old 09-06-05, 07:54 PM   #22
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iv got a 52 13 n i can skid super easy
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Old 09-07-05, 07:19 AM   #23
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Long wheelbase vs. short wheelbase... in my experience, a long wheelbase is easier to skid because it tends to stay straighter (front to back) while the skid is ongoing. With a shorter wheelbase, I feel like the rear can swing around more, thus forcing me to concentrate on keeping it straight, and not enjoying the skid. I may be wrong, as this is far from empirical data.
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Old 09-07-05, 07:28 AM   #24
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I have a kind of similar problem
On my KHS (sloping top tube) I used to be able to skid like it was nothing, and after a few adjustments on my drops I could consistantly do 100+ meter skids. But now my new bike is one size smaller and has a much shorter wheelbase due to the curved seat tube. It's squirly as hell and has some really weird geometry so now when I try to skid I cant get my weight properly over my wheel because my knees hit my bars instead of my thighs. Another problem that have found is I get speed wobble while I'm skidding at speed! yah my front wheel starts going nuts and I've fallen a few times due to this. I'm not sure if it's the shorter wheelbase that is to blame but I know that my setup is not good for skidding and it sounds kind of similar to yours.
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Old 09-07-05, 10:52 AM   #25
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Exactly. Fortunately the new bike I found (which i don't have yet at this point - its at my 'rent's house) is more like a size too large for me (although i ride a small frame for someone my size). The new motobecane nomade has geometry a lot more like the bikes I've been able to skid really, really easily.
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