I'm pretty new to the track bike / fixie thing although I've been looking into building a frame for over a year now. It looks like a feasible option at this point and I think it's a good starting point as far as learning to weld. The owner of the shop I work at used to build custom steel bikes (insanely nice stuff) back in the day and he'd be showing me the basics.
I want a commuter fixie that can take a beating. Not looking to do barspins and freestyle stuff (although I've got a BMX background), just something that will feel relatively solid and confidence inspiring.
Are there any bikes out there that have a sort of "baseline" geo that would be good to copy? I know for downhill mountain bikes, the Iron Horse Sunday is the bike that everything else is sort of measured against and I'm wondering if there's an equivalent in the track / fixie domain.
The Brooklyn Gangster looks like EXACTLY the kind of bike I want. Durable, geometry somewhat in the middle of the road as far as race vs. freestyle, and almost as importantly, aesthetically pleasing. I would maybe like a little less of an over-built characteristic (probably some cheap-ish moderately butted steel, brazed, no pierced ST, basic track dropouts).
Opinions? Suggestions? Resources I should look into? I'm totally new to the whole thing so any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
for a commuter, you're going to want clearance for 38s or 32s with fenders, rack and fender braze-ons, probably a 73-74 HTA, and a 4-5cm BB drop so people can run the cranks they need to for their size. size it "long" instead of "tall" for more fit variety.
for what it's worth, the BMW gangster isn't that middle-of-the road; they designed it as a durable frame that would barspin a 700c. i'd call it closer to the trick riding end of the spectrum.
When I say "commuter" I just mean something that will get me to work a mile away and be fun to mess around on. Living in SoCal desert means no fenders then. No rack either since I don't ever ride loaded up.
Chase, is a 73-74 HT and 4-5cm BB drop pretty "standard" geo? I think I want something that will be just a bit more relaxed and street-oriented than a normal track racing bike, but still retain a quick feel.
I looked into the Brooklyn more and it's definitely not what I'd want. Too overbuilt and silly sizing.
73 parallel is the classic road geometry, while tracks can go up to 75 HTA. 80s crit bikes often had a 73.5 to 74 degree head angle for agile handling. 5cm bb drop isn't out of the ordinary for a track frame; certain production frames are in that range. the advantage of welding or fillet brazing is you're not constrained by the geometry of a lugset.