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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 02-16-06, 04:14 PM   #1
henry_lee
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gig bag + riding fixed = bad idea?

hi,

I was planning on riding to rehearsals (maybe 1 mile or 1.5 one way) using a
backpack gig bag to carry an electric guitar. I know, I'm a dork, but I'm over it.

anything odd about the scenario? stopping? skipping? weight issues?
or is it pretty much the same as riding with a full mess bag? I'm a fairly
mellow rider, not a speed demon. esp. with a decent geetar on my back.

also, any gig bags to recommend? I did a search but people lean toward
riding with a trailer. not an option for me due to living space / storage.

or I could just take muni (public transpo). yuck.
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Old 02-16-06, 04:26 PM   #2
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I used to do it all the time. Just need to ride a little slower and pay a little more attention as your payload is more valuable.

'bout the only suggestion I can make is to get a gigback with back style straps so your guitar doesn't shift around too much.
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Old 02-16-06, 04:34 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fixedpip
I used to do it all the time. Just need to ride a little slower and pay a little more attention as your payload is more valuable.

'bout the only suggestion I can make is to get a gigback with back style straps so your guitar doesn't shift around too much.

cool, thanks. I could see how the straps would be important.

then after I posted, I remembered one thing: standing around at rehearsal
in my mountain / spd shoes would kinda suck. they're not the most comfy shoes.

hmm.
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Old 02-16-06, 05:15 PM   #4
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rehearse barefooted?
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Old 02-16-06, 05:18 PM   #5
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I have thought about it, but my jazz bass is way too heavy.
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Old 02-16-06, 05:22 PM   #6
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awesome... LOL. seriously, that's brilliant.

although the current / ground of the guitar combined with all of the cables,
power supplies, computers, amps and carpet and metal objects might make things
interesting. it's quite possibly the most disgusting / dirty rehearsal space in
norcal too. who knows what's been on that floor.

I think I've decided on muni. I've got a straight shot there without transfers.

thanks though!
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Old 02-16-06, 05:55 PM   #7
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get bag where you can do the straps up real tight, and dont go too fast! Nothing worse than a decent instrument broken, you will feel heartbroken
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Old 02-16-06, 06:17 PM   #8
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Any good gigbag has pockets. Throw some flip-flops in there, and voila - a change of shoes.

I've done 3-mile trips with ridiculous things strapped to my back. Just NEVER go fast. Stopping too fast is bad, you WILL end up falling over.
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Old 02-16-06, 06:21 PM   #9
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i ride around with my trumpet in its gigbag all the time, and my biggest concern is falling, not so much because i'd wreck it, but mostly because it would suck to get impaled on. i've never ridden with my guitar or bass though, it would make me crazy nervous.
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Old 02-16-06, 07:05 PM   #10
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it probably will suck for trying to look over your shoulder in traffic
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Old 02-16-06, 07:15 PM   #11
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Oh, you'll be fine. I think the only real concern would be if the neck was poking off to one side. How many people have crashed at all and gone MAN I really scraped my back up?

I'll ride around town to shows with my acoustic and weirdly, I'm most comfortable just riding pretty upright and holding it on my right thigh with my right hand, as if I was playing. It might be the safest place for it-- if you see something's gonna happen you can just toss it (no worse than what'd happen at any show)(well, any show worth playing) and if something unexpected happens, well, probably about the same. The guitar will go flying, which might be a better idea for it than being attached to a much heavier human being.

Not much doing for skips/skids, though, with a guit on yr lap.

Or there's always
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Old 02-16-06, 07:19 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by henry_lee
cool, thanks. I could see how the straps would be important.

then after I posted, I remembered one thing: standing around at rehearsal
in my mountain / spd shoes would kinda suck. they're not the most comfy shoes.

hmm.
Practicing in SPD shoes does suck. I have to explain to my bandmates that when we actually play the show I will not have so much trouble getting my pedals to kick on

Riding with a gig bag is annoying but it can be done.
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Old 02-16-06, 07:42 PM   #13
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Hah!

You guys are great. Flip flops (brilliant!), guitar in playing position, etc. ...all fine ideas.
You've got me thinking more now. I'll need to tote a semi-hollow Gibson since my solid
ash tele is irreplaceable (and weighs more than ze pista!) so I'll have to see what kind
of gig bag that will require.

That little trailer is cool too!
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Old 02-16-06, 07:45 PM   #14
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I ride with a 1/2 size string bass when I have a gig in town. A little clumsy but it can be done.
I have been a luthier for 20+ years and these bags are some of my favorites. http://www.ritter-bags.com/
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Old 02-16-06, 07:53 PM   #15
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My trumpet is much smaller, but I ride with it in a gig bag all the time. If I were carrying lots of stuff, I could probably toss it in my chrome bag (heavily padded, of course).
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Old 02-16-06, 08:58 PM   #16
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my only problem riding with a gig bag was that i had trouble looking forwards... since my shoulders were low the back of my head would hit the neck of the guitar...

Last edited by gally99; 02-16-06 at 09:04 PM.
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Old 02-16-06, 09:23 PM   #17
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short test ride should let you know..... Its different w different guitars and different bags... depends on where the shoulder straps are. Backpack style straps that attach to the gig bag where the guitar body is (as opposed to up the neck) on the bag seem to work better.. but like gally99 said the neck can hit your head. also, if the straps are too loose or if its a big guitar like an acoustic the body can get hung up around the seat too.. give it a quick try sometime. If it feels akward bail.
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Old 02-16-06, 09:28 PM   #18
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I really don't think I could carry my upright bass while riding my bike, might be a bit of a problem. On the other hand it would it would be a nice cushion when if throws me off the bike.
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Old 02-16-06, 09:34 PM   #19
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Ya know it wouldn't kill you to WALK a mile.
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Old 02-16-06, 09:37 PM   #20
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just remember you might not be able to fit through such tight spots as you normally would!
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Old 02-16-06, 10:49 PM   #21
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again, good stuff here... thanks again for the responses / ideas.

I got a kick outta "try walking" - if you only knew Surlyoldfart!
Our apartment is surrounded by hills. Dragging groceries + 10-12lb boxes
of cat litter up and down them for a few years has been interesting.
I haven't owned a car in like 5 years, and have pretty much walked
everywhere until last summer when I got the bike bug after not riding
since I was a teen. I simply love my bike and enjoy riding it everywhere.

I'll find out Saturday!
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Old 02-17-06, 07:55 AM   #22
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Hills? Poor baby! You don't know from hills. Why when I was a youngun I used to have to carry my piano 10 miles to the rehearsal space, and it was uphill. BOTH WAYS!
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Old 02-17-06, 07:59 AM   #23
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Ya know it wouldn't kill you to WALK a mile.
maybe, but i sure as hell wouldn't want to test that theory.
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Old 02-17-06, 08:33 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gally99
my only problem riding with a gig bag was that i had trouble looking forwards... since my shoulders were low the back of my head would hit the neck of the guitar...
This is true. Especially when you have the neck of the bass sticking out of a guitar bag because it doesn't fit.

And I second the backpack suggestion. Its the way to go.
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Old 02-17-06, 01:35 PM   #25
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yeah, I've tried it, and my bass neck knocks me in the back of the head. It'd be alright with a more upright position on the bike (like a cruiser or something), but not on my fixie. Add to that the fact that I'm too paranoid about destroying it (images of snapped necks for me AND my bass), and I'd rather use another method.

This is with my bass in a Warwick gig bag with two straps, backpack style.
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