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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 10-27-10, 08:49 AM   #1
djpfine
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The Everything Bike

I've been having trouble finding a SS/FG bike that meets my criteria, aside from the Raleigh One Way. I'm primarily looking for a frame with eyelets for fenders and horizontal dropouts so that I can easily change flats. What else is out there? I'd like to keep it under $500 if possible.

The Bianchi San Jose would be a great bike for me aside from its track for ends, plus the fact that they are now discontinued. I'm looking for an everything bike that I can use as my winter trainer and also commuter. I bought a road bike this year and thought I'd stop riding once it got cold outside, but I've absolutely fallen in love with the sport. A steel frame with comfy geometry and the ability to take wider tires are other things I'm looking for in addition to what I mentioned above.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 10-27-10, 08:56 AM   #2
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http://surlybikes.com/frames/cross_check_frame/
http://surlybikes.com/frames/cross_check_frame/
http://surlybikes.com/frames/cross_check_frame/
http://surlybikes.com/frames/cross_check_frame/
http://surlybikes.com/frames/cross_check_frame/
http://surlybikes.com/frames/cross_check_frame/
http://surlybikes.com/frames/cross_check_frame/
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Old 10-27-10, 08:59 AM   #3
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Here's what I did to mount fenders on my Steamroller (with track ends); I got a set of SKS P45s, and mounted the front one without the included plastic quick release pieces at the bottom of the fender stays. I just used bolts and p-clamps to attach the fender stays to the fork. I saved the plastic pieces for the bottom of the rear fender stays. Mounted those to p-clamps and then attached the fenders to the quick release pieces. Everything was plenty sturdy, and to get the rear wheel out, I just popped the fender out of the quick release pieces to give it enough wiggle room to get the wheel out. Pretty simple and worked great.
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Old 10-27-10, 09:01 AM   #4
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Also, the Cross-check will do everything you need it to. Outside your budget though (I assume you meant 500 for a complete bike). However, if you're going to run it single speed, I suppose you could buy the complete and sell the shifters and derailleurs to make a little money back, then just use spacers and a cog on the freehub (no fixed option this way).
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Old 10-27-10, 09:05 AM   #5
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I'd like to have a flip flop hub so that I can try both SS and FG. The Cross Check is a good recommendation, but I'd like a complete SS/FG bike instead of going through the buy/sell/build hassle. Main reason I wanted to keep things cheap is so that I can lock it up and beat it up without worrying too much. There don't seem to be too many used Surlys in my area unfortunately.
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Old 10-27-10, 09:10 AM   #6
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If you don't mind track ends, the Fantom Cross Uno has rack mounts, cantis, and fits wide tires....
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Old 10-27-10, 09:16 AM   #7
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If you can deal with track ends.

http://www.voodoocycles.net/nakisi.htm

And if you must have horizontal dropouts

http://salsacycles.com/bikes/casseroll/
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Old 10-27-10, 10:52 AM   #8
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Why not track ends? The Fantom Cross Uno is a good recommendation if you're tied to the $500 budget. But really, when I read the OP, I, just like others, immediately thought of a cross check. It's the do-it-all frame of choice, and includes the flexibility of readily going geared when the time comes. It pretty much exactly matches the criteria you described apart from price point, and you'd probably be well-put to save up for one.
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Old 10-27-10, 10:56 AM   #9
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Most bikes that come with track ends do it for style. They are a less good system, a trowback from the olden days. But since people think the want a "track" bike, manufacturers put track ends on the bikes for them. They are useless unless you need them for your time trial bike, or are racing on a velodrome. Horizontal drop outs are the better system, which is why they were the most common, until an even better one came along(vertical drop outs).
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Old 10-27-10, 11:22 AM   #10
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The problem with most modern frames with horizontal dropouts such as the Surly Crosscheck or Salsa Casseroll is that rear dropout spacing is 130mm or more to permit use of gears, thus limiting the choice of SSFG wheelsets. Although you can often space a ssfg wheel hub from 120mm to 130mm, this puts additional bending stress on the axle that can be an issue if you have heavy loads on the rear of the bike. There are plenty of "track" framesets spaced at 120mm with ample room for fenders and large tires, as well as mounts for fenders and racks. I have a Kilo TT, and the only complaint I have is that it lacks separate fender and rack mounts in the rear.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:09 PM   #11
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Most bikes that come with track ends do it for style. They are a less good system, a trowback from the olden days. But since people think the want a "track" bike, manufacturers put track ends on the bikes for them. They are useless unless you need them for your time trial bike, or are racing on a velodrome. Horizontal drop outs are the better system, which is why they were the most common, until an even better one came along(vertical drop outs).
You are wrong in so many ways.

Its pretty dumb that the OP doesnt want horizontal drops. Carry a 15mm wrench with you. The one I carry has a tire lever one one side and a 15 on the other. Problem solved
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Old 10-27-10, 12:09 PM   #12
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The problem with most modern frames with horizontal dropouts such as the Surly Crosscheck or Salsa Casseroll is that rear dropout spacing is 130mm or more to permit use of gears, thus limiting the choice of SSFG wheelsets. Although you can often space a ssfg wheel hub from 120mm to 130mm, this puts additional bending stress on the axle that can be an issue if you have heavy loads on the rear of the bike.
Good grief..an extra 5mm of spaces on either side isn't going to harm anything. When bolted down, the spacers take much of the bending forces away from the axle. I have wheels with a lot more spacers than that, and old freewheel hubs use a lot more spacers than that on the drive side. Besides, you don't even need to space it out the full 5mm on either side. Space it out ~3mm in either direction and close the gap when you tighten the track nuts.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:10 PM   #13
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You guys now have me reconsidering track ends, particularly given how much more common they are. From what I've read though, if I install fenders on a bike with track fork ends, then changing a flat out on the road is pretty much impossible unless I bring all my tools and remove the fenders each time I want to take off the wheel, correct?
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Old 10-27-10, 12:15 PM   #14
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In choosing your frame, I wouldn't give too much priority to horizontal dropouts over track ends. It doesn't really make a huge difference if the frame has horizontal dropouts or track ends. You can easily get your wheel out with either, unless you chain is too short (trackend problem) or if your tire is too big (horizontal dropout problem). Fenders aren't a problem with track ends if you set the fender up properly. Set the fender up so there is enough clearance in the back to pull out the wheel. I've never had a problem fixing a flat with track ends and fenders. If the fender is set too close, you should be able to get the wheel back on by reinstalling it before you reinflate the tire. Most fenders are pretty flexy anyway, especially the plastic ones (e.g. Planet Bike), so no matter how much clearance you really have, its still possible to get the wheel off and on.

Last edited by mihlbach; 10-27-10 at 12:26 PM.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:15 PM   #15
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It will make finding the perfect bike that much easier.

It really depends on how tightly the fender "hugs" the tire at the furthest point back. Yes it will probably be more of a hassle. But having all the air out of the tire, it might be a tight squeeze, or else you will have to partly remove the fender.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:17 PM   #16
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In choosing your frame, I wouldn't give too much priority to horizontal dropouts. It doesn't really make a huge difference if the frame has horizontal dropouts or track ends. You can easily get your wheel out with either, unless you chain is too short (trackend problem) or if your tire is too bike (horizontal dropout problem). Fenders aren't a problem with track ends if you set the fender up properly, with enough clearance in the back to pull out the tires. How often you do need to remove your wheel from the frame anyway?
By horizontal, I meant track ends. If your chain is too tight to remove the wheel, pop it off the chainring.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:21 PM   #17
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You are wrong in so many ways.

Its pretty dumb that the OP doesnt want horizontal drops. Carry a 15mm wrench with you. The one I carry has a tire lever one one side and a 15 on the other. Problem solved
Get off the drugs.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:23 PM   #18
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You guys now have me reconsidering track ends, particularly given how much more common they are. From what I've read though, if I install fenders on a bike with track fork ends, then changing a flat out on the road is pretty much impossible unless I bring all my tools and remove the fenders each time I want to take off the wheel, correct?
yes.
unless u have non-full fenders, clip ons, or those easily removed ones like planet bike speed ez
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Old 10-27-10, 12:27 PM   #19
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Get off the drugs.
Please explain.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:31 PM   #20
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yes.
unless u have non-full fenders, clip ons, or those easily removed ones like planet bike speed ez
Avoid those fenders like the plague, at least the MTB versions. I have a pair and they are the most unstable fenders I have ever used. They rattle around and rub the tire with even the tiniest bump. Even standing and pedaling causes them to get caught on the knobs of my winter tires. They bike is unrideable with those fenders.

If you need removable fenders, get the PB clipons...they are way better than the speedEZ fenders. Of course the better option would be any full fender that is actually bolted on.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:33 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by djpfine View Post
You guys now have me reconsidering track ends, particularly given how much more common they are. From what I've read though, if I install fenders on a bike with track fork ends, then changing a flat out on the road is pretty much impossible unless I bring all my tools and remove the fenders each time I want to take off the wheel, correct?
Undoing two rear bolts/screws on the fender takes me about 15 seconds... That should give you enough room to pull the wheel to the back of the track ends (if you have plastic fenders).
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Old 10-27-10, 12:35 PM   #22
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Please explain.
Your post indicates you didn't read carefully and/or are confusing terminology. Also your suggestion to carry around a 15mm wrench is irrelevant to the issue. It makes no difference if the dropouts are horizontal or trackends. You still have to carry around a 15mm wrench if your wheel is bolted on.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:37 PM   #23
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Thought he didn't want horizontal drops. My bad

Also track drops are horizontal, but he wants the kind where the wheel slides forward. I thought he wanted vertical drops.
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Old 10-27-10, 12:38 PM   #24
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OP, I think the Redline 925 is the kind of bike you're looking for: super commuter-friendly singlespeed.
1) Has flip-flop hub and comes with both singlespeed and fixed cogs (unlike bikesdirect, which usually only comes with one)
2) Comes with fenders (planetbike) and a chainguard
3) Has wide tire clearance (28mm stock)
4) Has eyelets for mounting racks and stuff
5) steel frame, relaxed-ish geo (sloping top tube! *gasp*)

I own the '09 version and got it used for ~$300, but the MSRP is either $500 or $600, if you go looking for a new one.

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You guys now have me reconsidering track ends, particularly given how much more common they are. From what I've read though, if I install fenders on a bike with track fork ends, then changing a flat out on the road is pretty much impossible unless I bring all my tools and remove the fenders each time I want to take off the wheel, correct?
No, you do not need to remove the fenders to take off the back tire.

Hope that helps!
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Old 10-27-10, 12:51 PM   #25
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Undoing two rear bolts/screws on the fender takes me about 15 seconds... That should give you enough room to pull the wheel to the back of the track ends (if you have plastic fenders).
Even better, buy a set of SKS fenders and a second set of quick releases for the rear fender. Viz:

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