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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 09-01-08, 05:10 PM   #1
Stefen17
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Frustrated: getting a fixed gear.

Hey gus, I need help building a fixed gear. Just to let you know before hand I have spent close to 20 hours total reading threads using the search function, so don't flip out on me. I do have some experience riding a FG, my friend let me barrow one of his for two weeks and now I can't go back to free wheel.

My MAX budget is $1200. Do I really want to spend that much? Not really, I would probaly feel guilty. But on the other hand I don't want to buy something and then want to replace it with something better a year or two later.

I want track, or stretched trach geometry.
I want good steal, nothing to heavy or flexy.

I am 5"11, a quarter inch or half inch under six foot. Long torso, average leg length. Inseam a 32, measured this myself though, could be a little off.

I am pretty much a middle man, meaning I dont want cheap stuff and I dont want the best stuff.

at first I considered the iro mark v pro, then decided nah, then the soma rush and surley sr, then decided nah. So far what I have seen that I think is a pretty good quality and good looking frame and fork is the Milwakee cream city. Opinions.

I think I want to go with a 16 teeth cog, but I don't know much about picking crank set sizes. I have read about a 70 inch ration, I don't really know how to calculate that. All the rest off the parts, I want quality but not the best of the best, anyone willing to help or make suggestions without flameing me?
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Old 09-01-08, 07:18 PM   #2
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are you getting it threaded or threadless?
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Old 09-01-08, 07:31 PM   #3
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But on the other hand I don't want to buy something and then want to replace it with something better a year or two later.
you know you want a fixed gear track bike, but don't know much about them or the components that go into them. you want good stuff, but not the best stuff. you want something comfortable that fits you right.

am i right on all these points? if so, do not try to build your own bike. go to your local bike shop and test ride a bunch of fixed gear bikes. buy one in the $500-750 range that feels the best to you.

ride the heck out of it, and keep reading forums and sites like this in your free time. talk to your friends about their bikes, and your bike. upgrade the bike with better parts when you know what those parts are and why you want them. (not because someone online said they were great).

you can keep waiting for other people's input, but trust me, this is the most fun way to do this.
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Old 09-01-08, 07:34 PM   #4
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^
he's right.
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Old 09-01-08, 07:38 PM   #5
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That dude said it all. You have the cash, so walk into a store and try out what they have until you find something you like.
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Old 09-01-08, 07:53 PM   #6
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honestly it sounds like you're overthinking things a bit. you've got a fairly nice budget, and imo the things you should be putting more of your research into is a nice frame that fits you properly.

don't even worry about gear inches, little components and all that right now.
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Old 09-01-08, 07:54 PM   #7
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That would be the easiest way,why not?

Or go buy a bike at a thrift shop.replace parts as you need.Whichever.
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Old 09-01-08, 07:58 PM   #8
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But on the other hand I don't want to buy something and then want to replace it with something better a year or two later.
This has much more to do with you than the bike. If you're going to start playing the upgrade game or are prone to not being satisfied it will happen no matter what you buy.

If you don't know much about how various geometries will feel see what complete bikes are available in your region and ride them all.
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Old 09-01-08, 08:30 PM   #9
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This has much more to do with you than the bike. If you're going to start playing the upgrade game or are prone to not being satisfied it will happen no matter what you buy.
This applies to nearly everything in life. I've experienced it with guitars, computers, cameras, bikes...with so many things.

In the long run, you will never have what you want until you learn to want what you have.

For your sake, try to learn that as soon as possible. I'm still working on it myself.
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Old 09-01-08, 09:52 PM   #10
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This applies to nearly everything in life. I've experienced it with guitars, computers, cameras, bikes...with so many things.

In the long run, you will never have what you want until you learn to want what you have.

For your sake, try to learn that as soon as possible. I'm still working on it myself.

omg you are so right on. i realized recently that my passion for acquiring parts and building bikes has been cutting into my ride time... LAME.

riding > shopping

riding > building bikes

i've been trying to repeat that mantra to myself over and over recently.
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Old 09-02-08, 12:52 AM   #11
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buy a bikesdirect bike and be done with it. I understand you don't want to buy something and then want to replace it a year later, but if you have a $1200 budget, $300-$400 on a bikesdirect bike doesn't sound like too big of an investment for you.

Ride the BD bike, find out what you want, and buy a new bike when you've got the itch to. You're thinking way too hard about this.
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Old 09-02-08, 05:56 AM   #12
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^^^ Besides, the BD bikes are worthy of upgrades or you can always sell it used on CL or eBay without taking much of a depreciation hit.
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Old 09-02-08, 07:58 AM   #13
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Twenty hours. It is nice you have invested *some* time, but there are people around here who invest twenty hours a day in riding, researching, reading, posting

If you think twenty hours is a lot of an investment in cycling, you had better just buy stock, as folks have said. You can spend months to a year on building up a bike, if you are after certain parts.

And as for this "can't go back to freewheel" claim, go easy, neophyte. Most of the true cycling enthusiasts in the forum, or in the actual real live world, realize there is a time and place for fixed and another application that requires gears. Do you ride at all now? With $1200 you could get a nice stock fixed gear and have $800 left over to buy a nice, used road bike. If you truly enjoy cycling, you'll find out soon enough that gears are nice sometimes too.

As for the upgrading syndrome - that is mainly something people in this subforum do so that their stock bike can be a little bit less mockable when they post it in the picture thread. Get a bike, ride it, when a part stops working, fix or replace it. Don't assume that all the components on a stock bike are garbage.

Don't be deluded into thinking that all guys on road bikes are lycra sissies and all guys riding fixed are hard-core urban cycling ninjas.

Last edited by nayr497; 09-02-08 at 08:05 AM. Reason: upgrades
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Old 09-02-08, 08:27 AM   #14
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First law of hobby expenditures: After you enter the hobby and buy your first thing, one of two things will happen: you will either soon tire of it or you will get into it. In either case, it makes sense to make your first purchase be a decent but modest one.
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Old 09-02-08, 12:58 PM   #15
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I've experienced it with guitars, computers, cameras, bikes...


I think we were separated at birth.
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Old 09-02-08, 01:44 PM   #16
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I didn't mean that 20 hours searching the thread was alot of experience, I was just garding against some one lashing me for not using the search feature.

I am going to use this bike for commuting. Where I live a fixed gear is conduscive, thats why I said I could not go back to a free wheel. I love the way FG rides for what I need.

Last edited by Stefen17; 09-02-08 at 01:48 PM.
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Old 09-02-08, 01:48 PM   #17
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you know you want a fixed gear track bike, but don't know much about them or the components that go into them. you want good stuff, but not the best stuff. you want something comfortable that fits you right.

am i right on all these points? if so, do not try to build your own bike. go to your local bike shop and test ride a bunch of fixed gear bikes. buy one in the $500-750 range that feels the best to you.

ride the heck out of it, and keep reading forums and sites like this in your free time. talk to your friends about their bikes, and your bike. upgrade the bike with better parts when you know what those parts are and why you want them. (not because someone online said they were great).

you can keep waiting for other people's input, but trust me, this is the most fun way to do this.
You're right., thanks for they advice. I went to my lbs today and test road a few bikes. In the complet FG bikes they had a masi and kona paddy wagon. They had a sury steam roller frame set, but they wanted to charge me to death to build it up, the Kona was actually pretty comftorble with good componets. I might get the kona and slap on some bull horns and a brooks b17.
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Old 09-02-08, 02:58 PM   #18
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Hey all, Just purchased a 2008 Kona paddy wagon with with nitto bull horns, brooks b17 black saddle. Removing the rear brake, putting a crossleaver on the bulls. Thanks for the help.

The 2008 paddy wagon has really good steel, the 2009 models are going up $30 and dropping to a cheaper steel, so if anyone wants an 08 they should get them soon.
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Old 09-02-08, 03:34 PM   #19
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O_O you said your limit is WHAT? . . . . : ( i suddenly feel poor. . . .
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Old 09-02-08, 03:43 PM   #20
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O_O you said your limit is WHAT? . . . . : ( i suddenly feel poor. . . .
I am poor myself, but in the longs runs its going to save me money. Just to park a car on my campus cost me $200 a year, so thats $800 saving's in four years, then the gas I will save going back and forth from school every day will be in the thousands. Also, I will stay healthy. I use to ride a specialized road bike for about 3 years. When I was hard pressed for money last summer I sold it. So I really felt the long run hit in my gas tank over the last year.
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Old 09-02-08, 03:50 PM   #21
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Looks like a nice bike.
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Old 09-02-08, 05:51 PM   #22
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Hey all, Just purchased a 2008 Kona paddy wagon with with nitto bull horns, brooks b17 black saddle. Removing the rear brake, putting a crossleaver on the bulls. Thanks for the help.
sounds like you made a really good choice! the brooks seat is probably the best upgrade i've ever made to one of my bikes. it takes a while to break in, but don't worry, i'm sure you'll be doing so much riding now that it will break in quick.
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Old 09-03-08, 06:28 AM   #23
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Congrats! Good choice!
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Old 09-03-08, 06:45 AM   #24
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I hope you like it.
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Old 09-03-08, 09:42 AM   #25
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This bike is an awesome ride, it's; smooth, quiet, comfortable, no toe overlap, pretty fast: I couldn't be happier. I'll post pics this weekend.
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