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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 10-13-06, 08:42 PM   #1
mihlbach
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gear ratio for riding with roadie group

What gear ratio would you choose for riding with a pack of roadies? I happened upon a big pack of roadies the other day on my fixie and I hung with them for awhile with 76 inches on rolling hills. Ultimately, however, it was very challenging keeping up. Natrually, group rides are faster than solo rides, and I was spining like crazy in the draft at about 25-27 mph and on the descents which got up to 34 mph at one point. I could have hung with these guys forever on my geared roadie, but I would definately need a higher gear with a fixie, maybe something in the low 80s. Any of you more roadie oriented fixie guys have experience riding fixed with fast packs of roadies?
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Old 10-13-06, 09:27 PM   #2
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50X16, 50X15, or maybe 49X15. Something between 85 and 80 gear inches.

I'd toss a brake on that biatch too. It'll make a lot of things easier. Specifically, you won't have to drop to the back of a pack if there is a turn at the bottom of a hill.

I ride 50X16 on all my rides with my road team and feel like I'm in an optimal road cadence until about 24 mph.
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Old 10-14-06, 02:28 AM   #3
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this all is going to depend on the terrain... too big of a gear, and you will be struggling to get up some steeper and longer grades. too small of a gear, and you will spin out on the flats. I run a 47 or 49t ring with a 16 cog. the hills in SE Ohio are usually not a problem, the downgrades can be very challenging without a brake, and I can't keep up with the fast team riders who average over 20.

you will probably have to go through a few gears before you know what best suits you.
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Old 10-14-06, 04:24 AM   #4
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48-16 will probably do you well if you can spin at all. I can keep up a 20 mph or so pace with 44-16, so the extra g.i. will probably get you into serious-roadie pace. Also, I second the use of a brake.
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Old 10-14-06, 05:29 AM   #5
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I went up to a 50-17/19 for the group rides this summer. The 19 came in handy for the hills but more for the damn long hauls in the head winds. Sometimes it is better to lead than follow.
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Old 10-14-06, 02:34 PM   #6
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39/52 x 12-23 works best for riding with roadies
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Old 10-14-06, 03:54 PM   #7
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Hey eddie - stfu.

I did a metric century on a 49x16. Wasn't too bad. You'll have to drop 'em on the climbs, and let them drop you on the descents (sometimes), but flats work fine for the group. Actually, the whole thing works fine.
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Old 10-14-06, 08:32 PM   #8
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i ride 44x16 with 25c width tires... hanging with a road group going 70+km distance and going around 38 or so km/h average speed is okay for me!

just spin that biach. the more you do it, the faster you'll be. fool with the gearing when you know you are absolutely positive that gearing is the only thing that is going to help u progress further. otherwise, it's good training
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Old 10-15-06, 08:08 AM   #9
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I did a couple of group rides with a decent roadie group up in the Adirondacks this summer. I was on 46x17 and I did just fine.
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Old 10-15-06, 09:02 AM   #10
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+1 on the brake. Alot of roadies would be unhappy with a brakeless bike.
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Old 10-15-06, 10:05 AM   #11
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I don't think it's an issue of the roadies being 'unhappy' with someone without a brake. It's an issue of safety.
Last week a teammate of mine did our normal route, which is decently hilly, fixed. Unfortunately, I didn't have the chance to get his gearing. But roadie group rides are hilly be design. You just don't want to take chances with your safety just to look cool.
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Old 10-15-06, 10:24 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DC_Emily
I don't think it's an issue of the roadies being 'unhappy' with someone without a brake. It's an issue of safety.
Last week a teammate of mine did our normal route, which is decently hilly, fixed. Unfortunately, I didn't have the chance to get his gearing. But roadie group rides are hilly be design. You just don't want to take chances with your safety just to look cool.
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Old 10-15-06, 12:46 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DC_Emily
I don't think it's an issue of the roadies being 'unhappy' with someone without a brake. It's an issue of safety.
Last week a teammate of mine did our normal route, which is decently hilly, fixed. Unfortunately, I didn't have the chance to get his gearing. But roadie group rides are hilly be design. You just don't want to take chances with your safety just to look cool.
Other people aren't worried about your safety, they're worried about their $9999 cf roadies being hurt.
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Old 10-15-06, 02:46 PM   #14
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Other people aren't worried about your safety, they're worried about their $9999 cf roadies being hurt.
So true. Go over to the road bike forum if you never do and read some of the crash reports. The bike always comes first
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Old 10-15-06, 05:28 PM   #15
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Old 10-15-06, 05:49 PM   #16
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Depends on how fast you can spin really. Gear for the climbs and expect to have some catching up to do on after the descents. 46x17 and 46x18 work well for me.
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Old 10-15-06, 06:59 PM   #17
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the brake is only for personal safety at intersections, downhills... if you are riding in a pack/paceline with roadies, it is not going to matter if you have brakes or not because no one should be braking hard or the whole pack will go down.

and actually i believe that brakes are dangerous in pack riding and a paceline of experienced riders on brakeless fixed gear bikes would have the lowest rate of pile-ups.
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Old 10-16-06, 06:04 AM   #18
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What gear ratio would you choose for riding with a pack of roadies?
I would find out what the average speed was for their ride. Then pick your gear based on what would give you that speed at about 100rpm's. That is at least a starting point and adjust from there.
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Old 10-16-06, 07:14 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by operator
Other people aren't worried about your safety, they're worried about their $9999 cf roadies being hurt.
well, sure. but again, don't think that's the issue either. if the group ride is riding for the, um, ride, then I'd hope the focus would be on the workout, not looking good.

Also, we all know that roadies aren't the only ones who put the bike first. In the words of so many ss/fg'ers.....NJS.
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Old 10-16-06, 07:29 AM   #20
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Dude, ss/fg people put their bikes way before roadies do. Look at how many people are riding their bikes set up like **** just because it looks cool.

When riding with roadies, the only time it is necessary to grab some brake is if there are higher speed turns or turns at the bottom of hills, that way you don't have drop to the end of the pack to slow down. While riding in the pack, fixed is actually an advantage due to the benefits in speed modulation.
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Old 10-16-06, 09:17 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Learn_not2burn
When riding with roadies, the only time it is necessary to grab some brake is if there are higher speed turns or turns at the bottom of hills, that way you don't have drop to the end of the pack to slow down.
Yes, exactly. most routes do have those bendy corner things at some point.

Look, I was just sayin' that I thought a brake was a good idea given the terrain you encounter on what is designed to be a roadie ride. We all know that different bikes are made for different kinds of riding, and road rides, by design, will favor road bikes.

It'd be like putting a road bike on a track, just not *ideal.* Seeing as track bikes are more easily suited to roads than road bikes are to tracks, I think a hilly ride on a track bike is a great, and that the extra precaution just may be a good idea.
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Old 10-16-06, 09:20 AM   #22
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Old 10-16-06, 09:24 AM   #23
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I use 48x15. Its a bit low for the downhill sections (madly spinning to keep up at 35mph) but works perfect for flats and uphills.
I use a brake and its a neccessity in pacelines, especially downhill to keep the spin under control. Also for just changed red lights, when some idiot at the head of the line decides to stop hard.
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