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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 07-08-04, 06:25 AM   #1
HereNT
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"Man I Love 10 Speeds"

It made me laugh yesterday when I was stopping by the corner store next to my house.

This guy rolls up on a purple and pink little girls x-mart MTB as I'm locking up -

Him : Man, you got that bike all tricked out - that bike is tight! I love 10 speeds.
Me : It's not a 10 speed. It's a 1 speed.
Him : Whatever - 9 speed, 15 speed, 12 speed, they's all nice.
Me : Uh, no, 1 speed. Look at it - no brakes, no coasting, no deraillers - it's a fixed gear track bike...
Him : What? No brakes?

Went on like that for a good couple of minutes. I just couldn't convince him that it wasn't a 10 speed. He eventually was just like "That bike is tight - I appreciate the look of 10 speeds" and rode off on what was probably his daughters bike.
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Old 07-08-04, 07:45 AM   #2
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You should have offered to let him try it out. That would have been priceless.
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Old 07-08-04, 08:03 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HereNT
It made me laugh yesterday when I was stopping by the corner store next to my house.

This guy rolls up on a purple and pink little girls x-mart MTB as I'm locking up -

Him : Man, you got that bike all tricked out - that bike is tight! I love 10 speeds.
Me : It's not a 10 speed. It's a 1 speed.
Him : Whatever - 9 speed, 15 speed, 12 speed, they's all nice.
Me : Uh, no, 1 speed. Look at it - no brakes, no coasting, no deraillers - it's a fixed gear track bike...
Him : What? No brakes?

Went on like that for a good couple of minutes. I just couldn't convince him that it wasn't a 10 speed. He eventually was just like "That bike is tight - I appreciate the look of 10 speeds" and rode off on what was probably his daughters bike.
When I was a kid (during the 70's and 80's), we referred to all road bikes as 10 speeds...

baker
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Old 07-08-04, 08:23 AM   #4
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that's funny. i've had to explain my track bike to many people. sometimes i make the mistake of saying it has no brakes....now i've learned only to say that in the right company.
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Old 07-08-04, 10:20 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbaker22
When I was a kid (during the 70's and 80's), we referred to all road bikes as 10 speeds...

baker
Yep, anything with dropbars was a ten speed. Still is to most of my friends. I think I might be the last person I know who actually owns a ten speed.....it might be 12.
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Old 07-08-04, 10:21 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by riderx
You should have offered to let him try it out. That would have been priceless.
Did that to one of my buddies yesterday, when he was asking me about the bike. In fact i've done it to all my friends. They're usually fine for about 20 yards, then its all over, and i'm doubled over laughing. I haven't made any of them put the clipless shoes on yet though, don't want to hurt anyone.


Quote:
Originally Posted by bbaker22
When I was a kid (during the 70's and 80's), we referred to all road bikes as 10 speeds...
we did the same thing -- any road frame was a "10 speed" -- funny part was that NONE of the gears on the bikes i had when i was a kid worked. They had the gears for 10 or 12, but they might as well have been 1 speeds.

Last edited by s2sxiii; 07-08-04 at 10:38 AM.
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Old 07-08-04, 10:25 AM   #7
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Yep, I still get that too. To almost anyone who is not tightly connected with cycling, "road bike" = "ten speed" (regardless of how many speeds it has).

This following almost exact conversation has happened countless times:

[Brillig mentions that he cycles]
"On a Mountain Bike or something?"
"No, on a road bike"
"What do you mean? Like a ten speed??"
"Yeah, except they have more than ten speeds now" (Brillig at this point deciding if he really wants to go through all of this or just bail).
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Old 07-08-04, 10:31 AM   #8
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I had my fixie down at the beach last weekend for a big 4th bash. I couldn’t believe how much that bike was the topic of discussion. Of course I went down with other roadies and over all out door sporting type enthusiasts. But the fact that it had one gear and no breaks was dumbfounding to many, I even got the Fred Flintstone comment So I let people try it out and after the beer flowed a bit more people were interested. I went for a ride with the roadies and it was so flat they hardly ever changed a gear and some became even more interested in my bike. Anyway the good thing is that after it was all over one person was totally hooked on fixed and wanting to build one up. I thought that was pretty cool.

Timmhaan – yea don’t bother anymore to talk breaks on my bike. It’s even funnier when you see the look on their face when it dawns on them that your bike has no breaks!!!
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Old 07-08-04, 10:44 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ehenz
Yep, anything with dropbars was a ten speed. Still is to most of my friends. I think I might be the last person I know who actually owns a ten speed.....it might be 12.
Ok, I'll date myself here. When I was a kid, if a bike had straight tubes, it was an 'English' or better yet, an 'English Racer'. Everything else was just a bike. I remember the first drop-barred 'English' I ever saw. I was 6 and this man (he was probably in the 9th or 10th grade) rode up to my friend Bobby and me asking how to get back to the local ritzy prep school he was attending. He was 2 blocks 'out of bounds' and was desperately trying to get back before he got caught. He had a gold Philips 10 speed (I think it was). We just thought that was the ugliest bike ;-) and asked him why his bars were upside down! About 5 years later, my older brother bought the exact same bike used and I thought he was the coolest kid on the block....

Jim
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Old 07-08-04, 10:47 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna

Timmhaan – yea don’t bother anymore to talk breaks on my bike. It’s even funnier when you see the look on their face when it dawns on them that your bike has no breaks!!!
One would hope that your bike wouldn't have breaks. That could be dangerous. Or did you mean "brakes"? I have to admit I'm not big on the idea of riding sans binders.


I understand Homonyms can present an especially difficult problem in some cases because they sound alike, but the different spellings mean different things. Changing one letter in a word could alter the whole meaning of a sentence.
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Old 07-08-04, 10:50 AM   #11
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Same here. Any road bike when I was a kid was a 10 speed. People I know still call them that. No matter how many times I try to explain my fixed gear bike or my singlespeed mtb, they just don't understand. They've got to try it to understand it. Yet sometimes even then, it's all a different language to them.
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Old 07-08-04, 10:58 AM   #12
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Same here. Any road bike when I was a kid was a 10 speed. People I know still call them that. No matter how many times I try to explain my fixed gear bike or my singlespeed mtb, they just don't understand. They've got to try it to understand it. Yet sometimes even then, it's all a different language to them.
sometimes after i've been drinking a bit...i get really into educating people about bikes. one innocent comment, and they're in for a 30 minute fun filled lecture. other times, like when i'm at work or something, i just can't explain it again...urgghhh.
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Old 07-08-04, 11:11 AM   #13
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i rode down on my fix to watch the csc invitation crit. and i was surprised at how many stares, comments and questions i was getting from bikers.
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Old 07-08-04, 12:19 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raiyn
One would hope that your bike wouldn't have breaks. That could be dangerous. Or did you mean "brakes"? I have to admit I'm not big on the idea of riding sans binders.


I understand Homonyms can present an especially difficult problem in some cases because they sound alike, but the different spellings mean different things. Changing one letter in a word could alter the whole meaning of a sentence.
Just for fun
An Ode to the Spelling Chequer

Prays the Lord for the spelling chequer
That came with our pea sea!
Mecca mistake and it puts you rite
Its so easy to ewes, you sea.

I never used to no, was it e before eye?
(Four sometimes its eye before e.)
But now I've discovered the quay to success
It's as simple as won, too, free!

Sew watt if you lose a letter or two,
The whirled won't come two an end!
Can't you sea? It's as plane as the knows on yore face
S. Chequer's my very best friend

I've always had trubble with letters that double
"Is it one or to S's?" I'd wine
But now, as I've tolled you this chequer is grate
And its hi thyme you got won, like mine.

—Janet E. Byford


Ha HA
But seriously I am diagnosed a serious dyslexic so their/there you go
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Old 07-08-04, 12:26 PM   #15
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Ha HA
But seriously I am diagnosed a serious dyslexic so their/there you go
No big deal. Just having some fun with you, that's all.
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Old 07-08-04, 12:54 PM   #16
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I love being asked why I need to "spend so much on a bike that doesn't even have gears? Why can't you just get an old ten speed from a garage sale?"
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Old 07-08-04, 01:10 PM   #17
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I love being asked why I need to "spend so much on a bike that doesn't even have gears? Why can't you just get an old ten speed from a garage sale?"
That's when you reply with "Why do you feel the need to spend so much money golf clubs when you can just pick up a cheap set at Walmart?" or "Why spend so much on all that fishing gear when a pole and string will do just fine?" Or "Why spend all that time on mods to your rice rocket when you can just buy an old 10 speed from a garage sale?"
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Old 07-08-04, 01:37 PM   #18
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More like "Why do you have to buy a universal remote when the original ones work just fine?"
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Old 07-08-04, 03:06 PM   #19
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one day i was working at bertucci's, and i went outside in the alley with someone to see my boss sitting on my bike, talking to someone. he see's me, and instantly starts asking questions (this was before it was fixed)

him: "whats the deal with this bike, only a front brake? what are you going for suicide or something!?"
me: "no, you only really need a front brake, thats as fast as your bike is possible to stop"
him: "thats insane, your gonna go flying over the handlebars and kill yourself!"
me: "not if you know how to use the front brake, but just wait til its fixed gear, only one gear, and you can't coast"
him: "why the hell would you want to do that?!"
me: "because you dont need to coast, or all those gears, or brakes for that matter"

sometimes i like explaining it to people, and sometimes its just annoying, because most people are stubborn, and won't understand anyway, no matter how many times you explain it
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