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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 05-23-11, 10:42 PM   #1
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Flip Flop Hubs?

I recently got an old Miyata 210 I think it's from 1984, but I want to customize it to make it a really cool and unique commuter bike for when i go to college this summer. I was considering turning it into a fixed gear but then i heard about flip flop hubs where i can have both fixed gear and free wheel! I was just wondering what peoples opinions were on this and I am open to any other suggestions for modifications

I will be posting pictures of this bike soon and probably even update them once i start working on it!
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Old 05-24-11, 12:52 AM   #2
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if you like both fixed and freewheel and want that option on the same bike, do it. if you aren't sure which one you would like better, still do it. The only real downside is you can't run two different fixed gears since it's fix/free not fix/fix. That downside hardly ever comes into play though for most riders
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Old 05-24-11, 07:14 AM   #3
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Flip Flop is the way to go. They are really common and give you options. Definitely better for the beginner as compared to a fix/fix hub. I say go for it.
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Old 05-24-11, 07:34 AM   #4
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You guys know you can still thread a freewheel on one side of a fixed/fixed hub, right?

A hub that is fixed on both sides is actually more versatile.
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Old 05-24-11, 08:11 AM   #5
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You guys know you can still thread a freewheel on one side of a fixed/fixed hub, right?

A hub that is fixed on both sides is actually more versatile.
It boggles my mind that hubs are manufactured fixed/free without lockring threading on one side. I actually have such a hub that I picked up on the cheap, but this design has never made a lick of sense to me.
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Old 05-24-11, 08:50 AM   #6
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It boggles my mind that hubs are manufactured fixed/free without lockring threading on one side. I actually have such a hub that I picked up on the cheap, but this design has never made a lick of sense to me.
I think it harkens back to the old days when geared bikes had horizontal dropouts and 120mm spacing. A 5-speed freewheel would go on one side of the hub and a fixed cog with lockring on the other. A road rider might use the freewheel side during the racing season and then flip to the fixed side for winter training in a low gear. The flanges are a bit closer together on those hubs and there's a few more axle spacers on the geared side to make room for the wider 5-speed freewheel, however, they can easily be respaced and redished for use with a single freewheel. I have an old wheel like this, which uses a modified freewheel in a single speed conversion of an old 1970s 10-speed. I agree that nowadays a fixed / free hub makes little sense, when a fixed / fixed hub can do everything a fixed / free can do and more.
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Old 05-24-11, 09:18 AM   #7
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Out of curiosity, has anyone here actually changed a bike back to SS once you started riding it fixed?
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Old 05-24-11, 10:02 AM   #8
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Yes I ride fixed some days and single speed others... It's just whatever I'm in the mood for at the moment. I'm not going to lie though I rode fixed from Nov. to march without changing because I was sooooo in love with riding fixed. So at the end of the day it's just your preference.
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Old 05-24-11, 11:10 AM   #9
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I have fix/free hub, but only rode it free when I first went to check out the bike. Switched to fix for the ride home and haven't changed it back once. I like that the option is there but to the OP if you like riding fixed you probably won't switch back to the freewheel.

Scrod– I didn't know you could have fix/fix+free. That does seem like the best option.
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Old 05-24-11, 11:27 AM   #10
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I have a fixed/fixed hub and you can thread a freewheel onto it. Now, if I could just find the tool to take the freewheel off.
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Old 05-24-11, 11:46 AM   #11
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http://www.parktool.com/category/freewheel-cassette
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Old 05-24-11, 11:49 AM   #12
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You guys know you can still thread a freewheel on one side of a fixed/fixed hub, right?

A hub that is fixed on both sides is actually more versatile.
Will it thread all the way on? I always assumed that the freewheel would not thread all the way on because there wasn't enough threading.
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Old 05-24-11, 12:04 PM   #13
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Will it thread all the way on? I always assumed that the freewheel would not thread all the way on because there wasn't enough threading.
It doesn't matter. There are just as many threads being used as with a fixed cog, which is enough. The number of hub threads, not freewheel or cog threads is the critical issue, since the hub is made of aluminum, which is weaker than the steel used on the freewheel or cog.
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Old 05-24-11, 12:04 PM   #14
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Exactly. Some of the threads inside the freewheel won't be engaged because of the smaller lockring section on the hub but there are more then enough threads to keep a freewheel secure.
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Old 05-24-11, 12:18 PM   #15
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That is what I meant. Guess a freewheel wouldnt be exposed to as much tension as a fixed cog anyway, so makes sense..
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Old 05-24-11, 01:04 PM   #16
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That is what I meant. Guess a freewheel wouldnt be exposed to as much tension as a fixed cog anyway, so makes sense..
Neither freewheels nor cogs are are subjected to tensile forces. That would be the chain.
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Old 05-24-11, 01:48 PM   #17
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Perhaps that was the wrong word. Either way with backpedaling or skidding arent you placing some sort of force against the cog?
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Old 05-24-11, 03:40 PM   #18
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That is what I meant. Guess a freewheel wouldnt be exposed to as much tension as a fixed cog anyway, so makes sense..
As mihlbach pointed out, tension is not the right word.

I don't understand why people think FG is so much harder on a drivetrain than SS. It's exactly the same. Except that the chain can go backwards so you can't use stuff like chain tensioners with FG (which only work when the chain goes in the forward direction.)
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Old 05-24-11, 05:03 PM   #19
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Perhaps that was the wrong word. Either way with backpedaling or skidding arent you placing some sort of force against the cog?
Backpedaling and skidding push against the lockring. When pedaling forward, it doesn't matter if you have a lockring on or not, and it doesn't matter if you have a cog or a freewheel -- the forces on the hub threads are the same.
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Old 05-25-11, 11:05 AM   #20
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Out of curiosity, has anyone here actually changed a bike back to SS once you started riding it fixed?
After ~2 yrs fixed I flopped to free this past January, it was a rough winter never-ending yadda yadda. And I could have seen myself staying SS/free for an indefinite period too until I wanted to gear back up a bit a month or so ago so flipped back to fixed and not seeing a reflop in the foreseeable future.

Whatever.

Oh but uh now I'm wondering if I want to do this 70 mile ride in July I signed up for fixed or on a multi-geared bike. I have had 40 mile days fixed but not all at once and possibly not w/ as much climbing as this ride will.
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Old 05-25-11, 11:30 AM   #21
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Backpedaling and skidding push against the lockring. When pedaling forward, it doesn't matter if you have a lockring on or not, and it doesn't matter if you have a cog or a freewheel -- the forces on the hub threads are the same.
I hope not. The lockring is there for security. The cog should be tight enough not to break free from its position. If the cog is actually being stopped by the lockring when you backpedal, then the cog is too loose. If your hub strips from skidding and skipping, then you were asking for it. Track hubs aren't really meant to withstand that sort of abuse' however, when the cog is sufficiently tight, its usually not a problem.
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Old 05-25-11, 04:07 PM   #22
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I hope not. The lockring is there for security. The cog should be tight enough not to break free from its position.
Can't the lockring can prevent the cog from breaking free? Or does it really only depend on the friction from pressure against the cog threads?
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Old 05-25-11, 04:24 PM   #23
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Its not a perfectly inflexible system, and i'm sure the lockring can play a small role in holding the cog in place, although sufficient tightening can prevent this. But generally, you don't want that to happen. The cog threads are far more substantial than the locking threads and you want as much of the force possible applied during skidding or backpedalling to pass through the cog/hub interface. You do not want it to be transferred to the locking/hub interface, because it would be more prone to stripping.

The bottom line is tighten your **** down to the point that nothing shifts or loosens and you'll be fine.
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Old 05-25-11, 06:30 PM   #24
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I was saying that I need to find mine.
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Old 05-25-11, 06:48 PM   #25
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You guys know you can still thread a freewheel on one side of a fixed/fixed hub, right?

A hub that is fixed on both sides is actually more versatile.
This.
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