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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 12-27-05, 01:52 PM   #1
brunop
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i'm ridin' 44/16 and accordin' to my cateye trusty cycloputer i'm goin' around 18 mph on the flat with no wind when i'm rollin' with little effort. or put another way, the effort i'm expending is such that i could maintain it pretty much indefinitely. if i was to go to say a 45 or 46 ring would i go faster on the flats at the same EFFORT, not necessarily cadence as i understand that at the same cadence i would be goin' faster in the bigger gear? does this make sense? anyone?

thanks!
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Old 12-27-05, 02:12 PM   #2
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Here's a link after some quick googling you can calculate mph with diff cadence and ratios:

http://www.wisil.recumbents.com/wisil/gearinches.asp

Ration and cadence affect mph, spinning is higher cadence. So if you went at the same cadence with higher ratio then you would go faster.

Last edited by kurremkarm; 12-27-05 at 02:22 PM.
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Old 12-27-05, 02:12 PM   #3
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If all else stays the same (wind, elevation, etc.) you cannot increase speed without increasing effort. Increasing chainring size will not overcome the additional drag that must be overcome to go faster. Put another way, increasing bike speed is the same as increasing wind speed. And we all know that increasing wind speed means more effort to go the same speed no matter what gearing.

SS
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Old 12-27-05, 02:13 PM   #4
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If you want to go faster, then up your big ring. You can expect a little more resistance, but it's doable. I'm riding 46/15 with no problem. You have to fight on the hills a bit but it's totally doable. I can usually go 22mph in a no wind situation and feel good about it
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Old 12-27-05, 02:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soonerschwinn
If all else stays the same (wind, elevation, etc.) you cannot increase speed without increasing effort. Increasing chainring size will not overcome the additional drag that must be overcome to go faster. Put another way, increasing bike speed is the same as increasing wind speed. And we all know that increasing wind speed means more effort to go the same speed no matter what gearing.

SS
That's why with my cruiser and bigger tires i feel like im about the same as on my drop bar bike with a higher gear. You can ride in a postman into any wind if you are going slow enough.
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Old 01-23-06, 02:03 AM   #6
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what would be considered a high cadence to shoot for.....i did some rough calculations and figured out at approxiamately my top speed ~26mph I would be spinning at ~120rpms I run a 44x17 should I aim to be able to have a higher cadence......I was just wondering about where everyone spins out?
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Old 01-23-06, 03:08 AM   #7
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i'm feeling weird about my cadence/speed lately. i feel like i'm going at a comfortable pace, but know i could be spinning faster, but i'm not trying to put myself in a situation where i cant stop in time...does this mean i need a brake???@?!

or maybe just gear down and spin faster..
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Old 01-23-06, 03:53 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tehz
i'm feeling weird about my cadence/speed lately. i feel like i'm going at a comfortable pace, but know i could be spinning faster, but i'm not trying to put myself in a situation where i cant stop in time...does this mean i need a brake???@?!

or maybe just gear down and spin faster..
Spinning a big gear at 90rpm will be just as hard to stop (if not harder, for me) than a smaller gear at 120rpm. Does this sound right to anyone else?

OP: I sprint at around 140rpm on the street. At 28x16 that's about 33mph.

On the track I sprint at (ideally!) 160rpm, which at 52x14 is about 41mph.

Keep in mind that in either of these cases, I have not been known to do so for very long, and I'm in decent shape, and train specifically for cycling, so YMMV. I know target RPM for most roadies is around 110-120rpm. A little lower (90-100) is probably pretty good.
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Old 01-23-06, 07:20 AM   #9
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how about playing with the numbers in this form, you can then calculate what your rpms are at various speeds and gears....

Cadence Calculator on FGG.com


WOOT !!!
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Old 01-23-06, 07:58 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sirrobinofcoxly
If you want to go faster, then up your big ring. You can expect a little more resistance, but it's doable. I'm riding 46/15 with no problem. You have to fight on the hills a bit but it's totally doable. I can usually go 22mph in a no wind situation and feel good about it
Start looking at skinnier tires too, you would want to decrease rolling resistance. What about riding on the drops more often for starters?

My 42x16 is begging to go away in lieu of my 42X13 ... specially on flats and downhill.
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Old 01-23-06, 10:15 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by huhenio
Start looking at skinnier tires too, you would want to decrease rolling resistance. What about riding on the drops more often for starters?

My 42x16 is begging to go away in lieu of my 42X13 ... specially on flats and downhill.
Actually, you don't need skinnier tires to improve rolling resistance. Rolling resistance is reversely proportional to tire pressure only. So a 25mm tire pumped up to 140psi will have lower rollin resistance than a 23mm tire pumped up to 100psi. If both tires have the same psi, they both have the same rolling resistance. This is because the contact area is the same.

The 23mm tire may have better aerodynamics however.

Note, though that skinner tires often have higher rated max pressures.
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