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  1. #1
    Senior Member Yotsko's Avatar
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    Vertical dropouts?

    I've become interested in fixies and now I want to build one. The frame I have available has vertical dropouts...am I jose'd?
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Steev's Avatar
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    No, but it makes it much more difficult. Better to sell the frame and get something with horizontal drop-outs, or just a complete budget bike.

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    Well, I'll say this... it's not ideal.

    Easy enough to make a single speed with vertical dropouts, but fixed is going to be either troublesome or expensive.

    You've got two options if you're determined to use that frame:

    1) You can play with your chain length and try to get it as perfect as possible. It can be done. But chain stretch over time will cause the chain to loosen and you'll have no way to tighten it up except putting on another chain.

    2) Have a wheelset built up using an eccentric rear hub. This isn't cheap, but it'll work beautifully.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Yotsko's Avatar
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    Well, thanks for the words guys. I don't think I'll be buying a new frame any time soon, so I'll just keep this one and make it a SS for now. Thats too bad, I was starting to look forward to trying out a fixie.
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    You shouldn't let yourself get discouraged so quickly.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Nick The Beard's Avatar
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    Looko into chain tensioners like the Surly Singelator(SP?). Its designed to take up any slack in the chain.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick The Beard View Post
    Looko into chain tensioners like the Surly Singelator(SP?). Its designed to take up any slack in the chain.
    These cannot be use with fixed gears

  8. #8
    Yup pyze-guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raleigh531 View Post
    Well, I'll say this... it's not ideal.

    Easy enough to make a single speed with vertical dropouts, but fixed is going to be either troublesome or expensive.

    You've got two options if you're determined to use that frame:

    1) You can play with your chain length and try to get it as perfect as possible. It can be done. But chain stretch over time will cause the chain to loosen and you'll have no way to tighten it up except putting on another chain.

    2) Have a wheelset built up using an eccentric rear hub. This isn't cheap, but it'll work beautifully.
    3) Eccentric bottom bracket kit.
    When sadness fills my days
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  9. #9
    Comanche Racing PedallingATX's Avatar
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    bummer. Try the Eno Eccentric hub like someone else said. It IS expensive, but if you skimp on some other parts, you can probably afford it. Or just sell you frame on CL and get a frame w/ horizontal dropouts. That's what I would do, anyways.

    If you want fixed, don't do SS it wont be satisfying. Recently I stripped lockring threads on my hub and contemplated running the other side of the hub w/ a freewheel. I realized that this just wouldn't be the same for so many reasons. GO FIXED. you don't get that feeling of the BIKE MOVING YOU on SS.

  10. #10
    Senior Member martinus's Avatar
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    Bend the knees, watch the trees ... 5 $ please .

  11. #11
    Senior Member Yotsko's Avatar
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    You know, now that I think of it, maybe I got ahead of myself. Why don't vertical dropouts work with fixed gears?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yotsko View Post
    You know, now that I think of it, maybe I got ahead of myself. Why don't vertical dropouts work with fixed gears?
    You cannot tension the chain properly in the long run.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yotsko View Post
    You know, now that I think of it, maybe I got ahead of myself. Why don't vertical dropouts work with fixed gears?
    You need non-directional tension on the chain. When you backpedal against a fixed gear, you must have tension. The only way to do that if you have vertical dropouts is to make the chain exactly the right length or install an eccentric rear hub or eccentric bottom bracket.

  14. #14
    Alfred E. Newbie dietstu's Avatar
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    Get an eccentric hub. And have a wheel built.

  15. #15
    cab horn
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    Before doing any of the suggestions above, is the frame even worth it?
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    Yeah, I'm with operator-

    If this dude doesn't want to get a new frame ($50? $100?), he's certainly not going to spring for an eccentric wheel ($150 just for the hub!) or bottom bracket.

    My advice to you, Yotsko, is to go the SS route with your current bike. When a cheapy frame with horizontal dropouts presents itself, make that your first fixie. If you don't already, you'll soon you'll have a house filled with bikes!

  17. #17
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    Ok and also, Sheldon Brown does present some vertical dropout workarounds in his fixed conversion opus, available here:

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/fixed-conversion.html

    But they all sound like a big headache to me!

  18. #18
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    im riding a cannondale with a semi vertical dropout, it works with my 46x16 gear ratio just fine... only thing i worry about tho is keeping the rear tire bolts TIGHT.. Im afraid that someday the backward tension from braking is gonna pull the wheel out. but its been working for me for a while now

  19. #19
    extra bitter kyselad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by damuthacuckfa View Post
    im riding a cannondale with a semi vertical dropout, it works with my 46x16 gear ratio just fine... only thing i worry about tho is keeping the rear tire bolts TIGHT.. Im afraid that someday the backward tension from braking is gonna pull the wheel out. but its been working for me for a while now
    This isn't particularly relevant to the OP, though. Semi- is a world better than fully vertical dropouts, if indeed the OP has the latter. I also don't see why you're particularly worried about the wheel coming out, but that's for another thread.

  20. #20
    Senior Member
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    Here's my Trek 1.2 with Eccentric hub. Have not had any problems with it, works great:



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