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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 06-17-03, 05:39 PM   #1
garrett
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I'm just getting into single speeds and fixies

I just got a 80's schwinn 10 speed that I would like to convert into a single speed. I would like to know if anybody has ever made a single speed bike by shortening the chain to justify the gear ratio desired. In other words, used the rear wheel with the stock multi gear set up as though it was a single speed? If it is possible why don't more people make single speeds this way? Other then the obvious weight loss.
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Old 06-17-03, 07:14 PM   #2
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um, why not just change to whatever gear you want and then never shift gears again? you effectively have a single speed if you never shift gears.
that's essentially what you're describing. if you remove the derailers you have to make sure that your chainline is dead-on straight, so the chain won't fall off. and this setup has several drawbacks, like you won't be able to replace your cog with a bigger/smaller one, you have several unused sprockets, you might not be able to get a straight chainline without adding/removing spacers/redishing the rear wheel, etc. IMHO, just get a new hub and cog.
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Old 06-17-03, 07:59 PM   #3
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When I first got my bike I just rode a freewheel cassette like a single-speed. I actually did that until I got my flip/flop hub. It worked fine, but looked gross.
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Old 06-18-03, 12:22 AM   #4
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I just got a new fixer upper and am riding it that way until I get a new rear wheel with a flip-flop. It's perfectly fine as long as you keep the nuts on your rearwheel tight and make sure your chainline is straight and not too tight otherwise you'll be tearing that wheel side to side.
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Old 06-18-03, 07:21 AM   #5
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That works great but all you need is to drop $50-100 on rear wheel and cog. Schwinns are very easy to convert over. Also, you should go fixie for a better and true ride, not free wheel.
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Old 06-18-03, 07:27 PM   #6
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You can ride any dept. store bike has a single speed if you want just find the gear you like and keep it there...but always use your derailleur it's good for a chain tenson I've actually taken my shifters off and wrapped the chain around the the smallest chain ring in front and the third or second cog on the freewheel,and just anchor cable stop in the barrel adjuster of your derailluer....There you've got a single speed,if you don't like it change it back again.Good for spinners not pushers?:thumbup:
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Old 06-19-03, 01:47 AM   #7
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Thanks for the advice people. I think I will save myself the trouble and just buy a built one speed wheelset(I saw one for sale at a bike bike shop near my house for $95.00) I figure there is really no need to complicate my life by trying to avoid the pain of dropin 100 bones. The more people I talk to the more I see how much $$ it will save me in the long run. I don't think I am ready for a fixie just yet,but some day...
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Old 06-19-03, 06:53 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by garrett
Thanks for the advice people. I think I will save myself the trouble and just buy a built one speed wheelset(I saw one for sale at a bike bike shop near my house for $95.00) I figure there is really no need to complicate my life by trying to avoid the pain of dropin 100 bones. The more people I talk to the more I see how much $$ it will save me in the long run. I don't think I am ready for a fixie just yet,but some day...
Don't bother buying a new wheel yet, use that old one. Here's a few links on how to do it:

http://www.singlespeedoutlaw.com/issue1/features.shtml

http://www.glue.umd.edu/~rdeleyos/ssfaq.html
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Old 06-22-03, 09:16 AM   #9
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Also remember that it would be preferable to have a rear cog that's actually designed for a singlespeed (eg. BMX) rather than for a derailler. I've heard from other SS'ers that a modern pin-and-ramp multi-gear cog will try to shift the chain off of it if the chainline isn't just right. That may not be a problem with an '80s Schwinn. My SS has an old Regina GS Corsa freewheel (I believe formerly a FOUR-SPEED) with no ramps, Uniglide twist-teeth or any other modern funny stuff. The same probably goes for the chainring, too.
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