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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 03-17-09, 07:56 PM   #1
StealthBomber
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Making My Fixed Gear Faster

Hey guys I was wondering if anyone could give me some advice as to how to make my Dawes SST-AL faster. Aside from pedaling faster, what parts could I change out? I ride in the city, not too many hills. The only parts I have swapped out thus far are the handle bars, seat, and pedals.
Thanks,
Mike.
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Old 03-17-09, 07:59 PM   #2
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gold parts
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Old 03-17-09, 08:01 PM   #3
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Give it to someone that isn't slow.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:02 PM   #4
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get some new legs.

um, there really are no parts that you can just swap out and get magically faster. Sure, you can spring for expensive high end parts but the weight you will save will really not amount to much in making you noticeably faster, especially on the frame you have.

hate to say it but, pedal faster.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:08 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthBomber View Post
Hey guys I was wondering if anyone could give me some advice as to how to make my Dawes SST-AL faster. Aside from pedaling faster, what parts could I change out? I ride in the city, not too many hills. The only parts I have swapped out thus far are the handle bars, seat, and pedals.
Thanks,
Mike.
It's not the bike that makes it fast; it's the rider.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:14 PM   #6
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train practice practice train yourself.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:17 PM   #7
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red paint
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Old 03-17-09, 08:18 PM   #8
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Seeing as though everyone's choosing to misread the question:
You can make your bike faster with lighter tires, wheels and other rotating weight, in that order.

Clearly, how fast you are is up to you. Soo,
You can ride faster if you get faster and get properly fit to the bike.

I know it's probably the right size, but if you sized yourself, or someone in a shop did in 10 minutes, a properly done pro fit will make you faster.

This is where I would spend my money until I got serious about competing. Then coaching, then light parts.


edit: And roadfix is right of course, red is faster.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:23 PM   #9
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If you're in shape, I'd start with the gearing. Most of the mail order bikes seem to come with 42 x 16 gearing which is fine for cruising around but you can get more top end by going to a 52T ring in the front. Even switching to a 14T cog and the stock 42T ring will help. Without going through a sh*tload of questions and answers that would be my suggestion.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:28 PM   #10
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Run 53 x 11 brakeless.

And put aero bars on it.

Last edited by lukewall; 03-17-09 at 08:32 PM.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:31 PM   #11
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red paint
I think white paint, white saddle, and white bar tape is even faster.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:47 PM   #12
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Stop being so fat.
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Old 03-17-09, 09:21 PM   #13
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leather bar tape

Last edited by gkelley; 03-17-09 at 10:04 PM.
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Old 03-17-09, 09:28 PM   #14
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Bunch of jokers on here.
Easiest way, drop a tooth or two on your rear cog and for the same cadence your top speed will be higher. Or slightly more expensive and mentioned before, a larger tooth chainring.
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Old 03-17-09, 09:28 PM   #15
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The biggest thing you can do is to become a faster rider. That means a whole lot more than whatever parts you have on the bike.

Parts-wise, clipless pedals will probably be one of the biggest upgrades that will help you ride faster. I don't know what kind of ratio you're running, but if it's super-low that could limit your top speed. Gears only help to a point though, and as has been said, learning to pedal faster will make much more of a difference.

The thing about gear ratios is, each additional tooth makes less of a difference the more you go up. For a little while I was thinking that maybe I could be really fast if I put an even higher gear on than I already use (48x16), but first I did some research on Sheldon's site. I plugged my own combo and a few other hypothetical combinations into his gear calculator and looked at the speed measurements for various RPMs. I found that even with 48x14, a gear that most would consider to be a lot taller than 48x16, even at a good 90 RPM it would only make 3 MPH difference, and it would certainly be a lot less comfortable for everyday riding. Conversely, learning to sustain a cadence of 120 would up my speed by 7 mph in the same gear. That's more than double the increase in speed. Think about that.

Last edited by JacoKierkegaard; 03-17-09 at 09:36 PM.
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Old 03-17-09, 09:45 PM   #16
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Aerobars. For real. They rule for headwinds.
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Old 03-17-09, 09:50 PM   #17
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Training
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Old 03-17-09, 09:50 PM   #18
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Get fit by a bike shop that knows what they are doing, keep your wheels at a good psi, and keep your chain clean. Clipless pedals are a worthy upgrade. Depending on your type of riding, getting lighter wheels for easier acceleration might barely improve your times.
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Old 03-17-09, 10:29 PM   #19
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Get fit by a bike shop that knows what they are doing, keep your wheels at a good psi, and keep your chain clean. Clipless pedals are a worthy upgrade. Depending on your type of riding, getting lighter wheels for easier acceleration might barely improve your times.
+1
Wheels are the easiest place for manufacturers to go cheap. Thinner racing tires will also help. You'll take them up to higher psi and probably get a few extra flats. Don't try skidding too much on those. You'll understand why when you pay for them.
There are three main key to remember. The first is to improve the engine (you). The second is weight (yours and the bike's). The third is rigidity. It won't matter as much as the others and it will make your bike less comfortable, but a super ridged bike will more directly transfer your energy into speed.
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Old 03-17-09, 11:09 PM   #20
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Improve the motor(you.)
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Old 03-17-09, 11:20 PM   #21
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cut out your stem and get a cheap wheelset
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Old 03-17-09, 11:26 PM   #22
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Speed holes.



End of thead.
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Old 03-17-09, 11:33 PM   #23
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Finding an appropriate gear, finding a comfortable aggressive position, upgrading to clipless pedals, keeping a clean drivetrain, and buying better tires/tubes will get you 95% of the "bike" related improvements you could ever make. Riding more and working harder will get you much further.
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Old 03-17-09, 11:36 PM   #24
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^ Yes yes. All well and good, but perhaps you failed to see SPEED HOLES!!!!!!!!


END OF THREAD
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Old 03-18-09, 04:09 AM   #25
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