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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)

View Poll Results: What's the max gear you would run in the city?
70-71" 3 4.76%
72-73" 7 11.11%
74-75" 5 7.94%
76-77" 12 19.05%
78-79" 9 14.29%
80-81" 13 20.63%
82-83" 5 7.94%
84-85 1 1.59%
86"+ 8 12.70%
Voters: 63. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-26-08, 07:28 PM   #1
andre nickatina
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At what point do you think a gear is too big for the streets?

Flat city, hilly, whatever. Where do you draw the line on gear inches?
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Old 03-26-08, 07:28 PM   #2
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when you cant stop.
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Old 03-26-08, 07:35 PM   #3
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Personally I draw the line at 76"+.
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Old 03-26-08, 07:40 PM   #4
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When you can't slow yourself down or accelerate effeciently, or when you can't turn it over on the climbs.
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Old 03-26-08, 07:47 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by andre nickatina View Post
Flat city, hilly, whatever.
^^^^Those are definately different conditions. For my area that I live, 75" is plenty, and can't go up all the hills, but can be used a fair amount.

But I am leaving for south florida in a few days, and just set up my bike with a 42-14, what's that 80"? and from my experience down there last time, that may not be enough.
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Old 03-26-08, 07:53 PM   #6
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Hooters, your chart is for 27" wheels, most people have 700c. A more appropriate link is here: http://software.bareknucklebrigade.com/
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Old 03-26-08, 07:54 PM   #7
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Ooops my chart was off. But, I believe this is true: my IRO is at 79.2 and I don't like pedaling most of the time. That is 44 x 15. I end up thinking about it a lot. I'll change it to 47 x 17 and have 74.6 inches. I'll also have 17 skid patches. Way better.

Last edited by I_luv_hooters; 03-26-08 at 08:06 PM.
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Old 03-26-08, 07:54 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maddyfish View Post
^^^^Those are definately different conditions. For my area that I live, 75" is plenty, and can't go up all the hills, but can be used a fair amount.

But I am leaving for south florida in a few days, and just set up my bike with a 42-14, what's that 80"? and from my experience down there last time, that may not be enough.
Still, riding in the street implies start/stop, traffic lights, hazards that you have to get around, that sort of thing. Hills have an impact for sure, but I just want to see where people stand on the issue in general.
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Old 03-26-08, 07:57 PM   #9
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When you can't spin it effectively. Say mash or whatever you want, but if you can't maintain a decent cadence and/or stop it just doesn't make sense.
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Old 03-26-08, 07:57 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by I_luv_hooters View Post
My IRO is at 79.2 and I don't like peddling most of the time. That is 44 x 15. I end up thinking about it a lot. I'll change it to 47 x 17 and have 74.6 inches. I'll also have 17 skid patches. Way better.
Yeah everyone hates peddlers.
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Old 03-26-08, 08:06 PM   #11
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LOL i normally never mis-spell that word cuz i know it gets people hot under the collar.
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Old 03-26-08, 08:09 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andre nickatina View Post
Still, riding in the street implies start/stop, traffic lights, hazards that you have to get around, that sort of thing. Hills have an impact for sure, but I just want to see where people stand on the issue in general.
I can start/stop anything from 55" to 90", but I can't climb the 345 foot 1/2 mile hill right next to my house on a 90"
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Old 03-26-08, 08:17 PM   #13
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i'd say that a gear is too big for the streets when you're about 15 feet into an intersection and you meant to stop 15 feet ago. i run about 73".

****, i accidentally put my size instead of the too big size. goddamn.
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Old 03-26-08, 08:18 PM   #14
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If you can't spin the crank once, thats the point. Roughly around the 200 gear inches point.
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Old 03-26-08, 08:28 PM   #15
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I can push 78" up most of the hills around here, I just hate the lack of acceleration. 70-73" seems like the best compromise for me.
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Old 03-26-08, 08:34 PM   #16
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I run 44/15 at the moment, 77 gear inches. Where I live it is really flat, no real extreme hills and I do alright, I think I'll probably switch back to 44/17 for 68 and eventually get a 46 or 48 tooth chainring. I would say 77" is on the fringe of un manageable for city riding.
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Old 03-26-08, 09:27 PM   #17
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77" in chicago with a brake I wouldn't run more than this and am considering going to something like 73"
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Old 03-26-08, 09:41 PM   #18
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61:11?
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Old 03-27-08, 06:46 AM   #19
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Your poll is confusing because it asks a different question from the thread title. The biggest gear you would run is one step smaller than the point you think a gear is too big. I answered incorrectly, anyways.
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Old 03-27-08, 08:04 AM   #20
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Quote:
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Hooters, your chart is for 27" wheels, most people have 700c. A more appropriate link is here: http://software.bareknucklebrigade.com/
For what it's worth, almost everyone (including pro track racers) uses 27" to calculate GI even when they are using 700Cxwhatever tires.

Technically they aren't computing gear inches, but since everyone does it this way it doesn't matter (and I've gotten into long arguments in the track forums over the semantics of this).
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Old 03-27-08, 08:13 AM   #21
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When I first got my fixed it came with 86", which I took down before long. I dont think there is much of a reason to ride above 80" on the streets, unless you want to look macho and ruin your knees. But to each their own as long as you can stop and not hit someone.
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Old 03-27-08, 08:28 AM   #22
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Flat city, hilly, whatever. Where do you draw the line on gear inches?
I run a pretty low gear (38-15=66.4") but that feels comfortable to me:

I can easily stop, I can control downhills better, I can crank up to speed in about 4 hard cranks, in short after about 3 minutes of riding the setup I KNEW I found the one I liked.

I tried bigger gears, and one set up that was lower, but this is the one I liked the best (I still have a drawer full of rings and cogs)

I skid with either foot forward and the 38/15 gives me 15 patches, and if I change it I'd go with a 41T chainring which is 72.1" and 30 frickin patches.
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Old 03-27-08, 11:50 AM   #23
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When it stops being fun or crosses the line from living on the edge to deathwish.

Personally, I don't see any reason to go over the mid 70s if you live in the city. In city traffic your stopping or starting as often as your are sprinting.

I ride 46/17 with a 700x28 rear wheel. Thats bout 72.5 inches.
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Old 03-27-08, 12:07 PM   #24
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I dont think there is much of a reason to ride above 80" on the streets, unless you want to look macho and ruin your knees.
where macho = spinning a super slow cadence.
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Old 03-27-08, 12:19 PM   #25
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yeah, i run about 80 inches and i can't see why i'd want to do more. i think it's sort of a point where everything else is downhill from there. with lower gears i was spinning out even on flat ground, so i upped the gear inches and was able to keep the same or almost the same cadence and get some more speed, or when riding slower, be pedaling slower and not spinning out.

for me, mid to high 70s is where it's at, though i'm loving this 49x16. it can be so personal, though. i know someone who rides 42x18 in the exact same area and terrain just because he likes to spin.
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