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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 05-24-11, 09:38 PM   #1
cradduck
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Upright or drop bar fixed?

Ive been commuting for quite some time on a old Bridgestone 400. I turned it into an upright bike at the end of last year with Albatross bars and a B67 saddle. I use the bike for daily commuting (carradice camper on the rear) and grocery getting (porteur rack on the front).

I was wondering if the above setup would work decently well for fixed commuting or if i would be better off with drop bars like most of the fixies I see around town?
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Old 05-24-11, 09:57 PM   #2
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I've been riding fixie for roughly a year and I've been the coolest cat on the block with my fancy nitto track drops. I recently switched them out for a pair of classic townie handlebars. The first time I tried my new handlebars I almost cried from joy. Choosing to be as comfortable as possible on my bike was the best decision I've made since getting the bike.
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Old 05-24-11, 10:15 PM   #3
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Yeah, if you're comfortable with your current bar setup, I don't see why you would need to change it up just cos everyone else is doing it (unless you're actually going to the track). Don't fix what isn't broken.
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Old 05-24-11, 10:17 PM   #4
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If you go drops, you can get a stem with a fair bit of rise so that the flats are comfotable and the drops put you in a comfortably aero position.
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Old 05-24-11, 11:16 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jessesv View Post
Yeah, if you're comfortable with your current bar setup, I don't see why you would need to change it up just cos everyone else is doing it (unless you're actually going to the track). Don't fix what isn't broken.
I'm certainly comfortable, perhaps the most comfortable I've ever been on a bike after switching the to an upright position. I just thought I was missing something (perhaps being in a more aggressive form is all around better for riding fixed...I dunno...).

There are lots of fixed gear riders where I live....most on bikes with drops, some with bullhorn bars, and a few with BMX style handlebars...none that I've seen with more 'casual' style bars.
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Old 05-24-11, 11:21 PM   #6
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Switching to fixed gear won't suddenly mess up your handlebar setup. If what you have is working for you, keep it.
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Old 05-25-11, 03:43 AM   #7
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why don't you try those other bars out before buying? i'm a bullhorn/drops kinda guy. a couple of friends of mine are risers kinda guys. when i was starting, i tried their bikes and really didn't like the hand positions of risers, so i knew that those weren't for me...

try before you buy
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Old 05-25-11, 04:20 AM   #8
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Drops are good for going fast, far, and/or if you spend a lot of time on the open road without interuption from traffic stops every few blocks. If that doesn't apply to you, then stick with what you've got if its comfortable.
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Old 05-25-11, 08:59 AM   #9
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Drops are good for going fast, far, and/or if you spend a lot of time on the open road without interuption from traffic stops every few blocks.
If you have to deal with city traffic, drops are definitely not ideal. Bullhorns are a little better for that because you can get pretty comfortable without dropping your head too far down. An upright position is always better when dealing with intersections, red lights and aggressive city drivers.

People seem to like fixed gears a lot for the looks, so that explains a lot of track drops in the street (I admit that I run track drops on one of my bikes), but comfort should really come first. Looks can only get you so far.
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Old 05-25-11, 09:09 AM   #10
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If you have to deal with city traffic, drops are definitely not ideal. Bullhorns are a little better for that because you can get pretty comfortable without dropping your head too far down. An upright position is always better when dealing with intersections, red lights and aggressive city drivers.
The only difference between horns and drops+hoods is one less hand position, so they aren't really advantageous over drops in any significant way. You don't have to ride in the drops while in the city and IMO, traffic is manageable with drops, even more manageable with a pair of hoods (and even better yet drops + hoods + cross levers!)....my point was that if you never get beyond dense urban areas, there is no advantage in switching to drops from whatever the OP is currently using.
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Old 05-25-11, 11:24 AM   #11
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...none that I've seen with more 'casual' style bars.
You might want to look in here.
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...f-Your-Townies
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Old 05-25-11, 12:05 PM   #12
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The only difference between horns and drops+hoods is one less hand position, so they aren't really advantageous over drops in any significant way. You don't have to ride in the drops while in the city and IMO, traffic is manageable with drops, even more manageable with a pair of hoods (and even better yet drops + hoods + cross levers!)....my point was that if you never get beyond dense urban areas, there is no advantage in switching to drops from whatever the OP is currently using.
Agreed. I guess I should have specified 'drops' as 'track drops,' but either way, you're right about there not being any advantage. Again, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
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Old 05-25-11, 12:16 PM   #13
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OK..then we agree. I once rode my track drops on the street for about 2 miles, then turned around and went back home to change bars. Track drops are good for the track...end of story.
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Old 05-25-11, 01:42 PM   #14
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road drops
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Old 05-25-11, 06:03 PM   #15
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I like Soma Sparrow bars and the various Velo Orange bars for a townie bike. For long-distance riding drops are a better choice.
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Old 05-25-11, 06:37 PM   #16
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Well I like my Track drops a lot more comfortable than the bullhorns I tried, my commute is short so I really have no reason for anything else
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