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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 07-13-07, 12:05 AM   #1
streetlightpoet
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Anyone riding a singlespeed xtracycle?

So my San Jose is the quickly becoming the utility bike of the quiver: lights, racks, front and rear brakes, all that uncool stuff. I've been thinking about putting a freeloader on it, and while I know I could just hang a derailleur on the xtracycle I've been wondering how it'd be just to leave it as a ss. Anyone try this?
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Old 07-13-07, 12:32 AM   #2
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I was considering doing the same, though I don't have the $$ for a FreeRadical right now. It seems like a SS would work, but your chain tension and chainline would have to be spot-on. There's going to be plenty of play in that long of a chain.
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Old 07-13-07, 01:27 AM   #3
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Yeah if I tried it I would probably run a tensioner. Actually a ghost ring would look pretty cool in a loop that long
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Old 07-13-07, 03:40 AM   #4
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I think of all bikes, this would be the last one that I'd make SS. Imagine climbing a hill with 60 lbs of kit in the back and someone sitting on the snapdeck! Gears for me please.
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Old 07-13-07, 06:52 AM   #5
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I gotta 2nd that emotion- something like this, I'd rather have versatility than simplicity.
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Old 07-13-07, 07:29 AM   #6
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I briefly set mine up as a fixed gear before realizing that gears are pretty awesome when toting someone or something up a hill.
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Old 07-13-07, 11:53 AM   #7
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yeah- you're loosing a lot of utility with the xtracycle if you're running single speed.
Basic back wheel and dérailleur setup won't sent you back that much.
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Old 07-13-07, 12:13 PM   #8
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if you really want to use the san jose, maybe consider getting an internally geared hub in your rear wheel ?

my current tow bike (+ bob trailer) is a 7-speed and it is sufficient but i wouldn't want to go with much less
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Old 07-13-07, 12:19 PM   #9
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The freeradical has a vertical dropout if I'm not mistaken.
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Old 07-25-07, 07:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coelcanth View Post
if you really want to use the san jose, maybe consider getting an internally geared hub in your rear wheel ?

my current tow bike (+ bob trailer) is a 7-speed and it is sufficient but i wouldn't want to go with much less
(sorry to dredge this back up) I am thinking now that I really would like to go the internal route, I was wondering about how practical a 3 speed would be though? You say you wouldn't want less than 7? Anyone else have any other opinions on it?
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Old 08-26-07, 01:08 AM   #11
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Sorry for dragging this back up again, but didn't want to start a new thread for it.
I've been riding my xtra for a few weeks now as a SS until I get some money together for an internal geared hub (8 spd nexus laced to a 700c salsa rim) and have been loving it. For most of my daily riding I am not carrying anymore than 20 lbs pack there, 30 if you include the xtra kit itself. Since Lexington is nearly entirely flat a single has been quite fine, a little slow to start but still quite comfortable once spun up to a decent cadence. Although I will say hauling the GF up a minor hill (almost 300 between the 2 of us) was a good work out, nothing unmanageable though. I've hauled some bikes on it a few times already, which alone makes it quite worthwhile for me (having several bikes and no car it gets tedious finding ways to get one somewhere without riding it.) Fit a bike box on the back full of coaster wheels quite comfortably the other day, something I definitely would not have been able to manage before.
The one thing I haven't cared for so far is the "tail wagging the dog" feeling when heavily loaded in the back, it's a minor trade-off but has gotten me thinking about putting a rack up front to distribute the weight a bit better. I think my wheels will need to be replaced with something a bit burlier in the future, but my main concern is whether the frame/fork ('06 San Jose) is strong enough to hold up to carrying my weight, up to about 50 lbs up front, and say 160 in the rear? (That would be an extremely unlikely load, but I can't imagine doing anything more than that.)
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Old 08-27-07, 02:20 PM   #12
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This guy has a couple. I believe he goes by "bah" on this forum.



ps- I'm not typically into blogs, but this guy has some cool stuff. http://www.bikerubbish.com/
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Old 08-27-07, 09:15 PM   #13
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That XtraElectra has always struck me as being a damn swanky looking bike. Maybe not the most practical gearing-wise, but man it looks good.

Lexington we-need-a-name Riders represent!
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Old 08-27-07, 09:24 PM   #14
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Not an xtra, but I had a ss cargo rig, and I thought it was pretty good. Then I converted it to a 1x6, 47 up front and 14-28 in the back, and now it rox my sox. Big loads used to be a grunty workout, now they're a grunty workout if I want them to be, or I can just shift and spin them up to speed. The other thing is that this kind of cures the tail wag effect, as you can spin smoothly rather than having to hammer, which I find tends to get things swaying. Keep on rockin' if you like your setup, but don't be afraid to try gears.
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