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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 06-24-11, 02:48 PM   #1
bettxc2012
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Help! Lbs is full of anti-fixed gear idiots!

An interesting little story...

So I went to my LBS yesterday because I've decided I want to start riding fixed. Right now I have a total beater 61cm 10 speed Schwinn World that has seen way better days. Now I'm 5'5" so you can see how that set up really isn't working to well for me. Anyways, I went into the store looking for some advice on how I should get into fixed riding, what type of bike I should get, if I could convert my **** bike into a fixedR gear ect... Long story short, all the employees basically said I was stupid for wanting to ride a fixed gear because it's so "dangerous" and "not worth my time" and that getting a new 2k road bike would change my mind about this whole fixie thing.

So now I come to you guys. Where should I start? Is this bike a lost cause or can I even convert it? Should I just go balls out and get a new bike? Ideally, I would like to build my own without spending an arm and a leg. But I'm open to your opinions so have at it!
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Old 06-24-11, 02:53 PM   #2
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You're 5' 5" and the frame is 61cm ? I don't see how it's even ridable.
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Old 06-24-11, 02:55 PM   #3
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Get a bike that fits. Probably a 50cm.
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Old 06-24-11, 02:56 PM   #4
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the bike is a lost cause just because of the size. I would try to sell it and put the money towards something that fits
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Old 06-24-11, 02:56 PM   #5
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Sell the bike to someone 10 inches taller than you.
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Old 06-24-11, 02:59 PM   #6
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Ideally, I would like to build my own without spending an arm and a leg.
Virtually impossible. It can definitely be done, but at the end of the day, you probably would have been better off buying a complete bike with all of the corners you would have to cut on components.

I'm pretty sure there are a handful of threads on finding a good quality, low priced complete fixed gear (bikes direct comes to mind), but I'm going to agree with the others and say your current frame is a lost cause. I'm about 5'8" and have a hard time with 56cm bikes so I have absolutely no idea how you're riding a 61cm. Im assuming it's not comfortable at all and an overall challenge to ride.

Last edited by jessesv; 06-24-11 at 03:00 PM. Reason: hamfoh beat me to it
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Old 06-24-11, 03:04 PM   #7
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You're 5' 5" and the frame is 61cm ? I don't see how it's even ridable.
I was thinking the same thing.

You have a few options.

1) Sell the bike you have now and make a few bucks off of it. It shouldn't be hard to sell if you ask for a reasonable price <$100. Right now people are trying to sell old junk bikes like that for like $250, so if you ask for something reasonable it should be easy to get rid of. Using that money put it towards a bikesdirect.com bike. They are affordable and almost everyone who rides them seems to like them. It's cheap, easy, and you get a pretty decent bike in your size.

2) Buy an old 10 speed that fits you, now as I said earlier, people are asking for ridiculous prices for bikes like this. I've seen people asking >$250 for old Schwinns with friction stem shifters. However, you may get lucky and find a good deal on a frame (all you really need is the frame, you're probably going to want to upgrade everything else unless it comes with a nice crank). If you find a good frame for a good price you can buy all the separate parts and build it up yourself. This means you'll probably spend way more on the parts of the bike than you would buying a complete. On top of that, you'll have to buy all of the tools and everything in order to put it together. And it's likely you'll end up having to go by the bike shop for help. A good thing that comes out of this is that you'll have learned a lot about bikes in the process, something you wouldn't get from buying a complete. Personally, I ended up spending way too much money on a POS bike. I learned a lot in the process and I really love my bike despite it being a POS.

It all depends on what's important to you A) getting a decent bike for cheap and not having to worry about it. or B) Spending a lot of time and money learning about building bikes and getting something that is individual to you that you can take pride in.
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Old 06-24-11, 03:06 PM   #8
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Your LBS either don't sell fixed gears or they haven't ridden one. I was all against them until I rode one - then I was hooked

As for the bike I'd sell it and start again, I managed to build one up fairly cheaply because I had wheels sitting around. But I agree - an off the shelf one would suit your budget more.
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Old 06-24-11, 03:08 PM   #9
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Kilo TT
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Old 06-24-11, 03:11 PM   #10
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I know my current bike is way too big. But hey, it was free and worked. Haha - I cant touch the ground on it. So I guess sell it and get a smaller frame? I'm probably have to buy online.

I have the option to buy a 53cm 2011 Mercier Kilo Stripper (http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...t_stripper.htm) for $300 on craigslist. The handlebars have been flopped and chopped into bullhorn bars and an 18 tooth freewheel cog has been added to the other side of the rear hub so this bike can be ridden fixed or freewheel.

Good or bad investment? Let me know.
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Old 06-24-11, 03:17 PM   #11
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I know my current bike is way too big. But hey, it was free and worked. Haha - I cant touch the ground on it. So I guess sell it and get a smaller frame? I'm probably have to buy online.

I have the option to buy a 53cm 2011 Mercier Kilo Stripper (http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...t_stripper.htm) for $300 on craigslist. The handlebars have been flopped and chopped into bullhorn bars and an 18 tooth freewheel cog has been added to the other side of the rear hub so this bike can be ridden fixed or freewheel.

Good or bad investment? Let me know.
53cm is still too big for you, although it would fit better than your 61...

Sell your bike. Buy a new Kilo in the flavor you prefer.
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Old 06-24-11, 03:18 PM   #12
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^beat me to it*

53cm may only fit taller people. i'm 5'10" with 32" inseam and the 53cm barely fits me. if you're 5'5, you need something like a 47 or 50cm. do not get that $300 the 53cm.

instead just order a motobacon track or a new kilo tt in your size from bikesdirect.com. k

i keep telling bikesdirect to make a 650c kilo tt. they just dont listen.

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Old 06-24-11, 03:18 PM   #13
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I was all against them until I rode one - then I was hooked
the opposite happened to me.. i hella wanted to ride fixed gear, even built up my own fixed bike just to try it.. and found out how much i love freewheels


OP your LBS sounds like it sucks... find a different one if you can
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Old 06-24-11, 03:21 PM   #14
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if you happen to be located in arizona, I might take that schwinn world off your hands, I believe itd be a good fit for me. N+1 ~!
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Old 06-24-11, 03:21 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by bettxc2012 View Post
An interesting little story...

So I went to my LBS yesterday because I've decided I want to start riding fixed. Right now I have a total beater 61cm 10 speed Schwinn World that has seen way better days. Now I'm 5'5" so you can see how that set up really isn't working to well for me. Anyways, I went into the store looking for some advice on how I should get into fixed riding, what type of bike I should get, if I could convert my **** bike into a fixedR gear ect... Long story short, all the employees basically said I was stupid for wanting to ride a fixed gear because it's so "dangerous" and "not worth my time" and that getting a new 2k road bike would change my mind about this whole fixie thing.

So now I come to you guys. Where should I start? Is this bike a lost cause or can I even convert it? Should I just go balls out and get a new bike? Ideally, I would like to build my own without spending an arm and a leg. But I'm open to your opinions so have at it!
Welcome to the world of road-bike bigotry. Now you know how recumbent riders feel.

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Old 06-24-11, 03:23 PM   #16
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Still too big. The Kilo TT sizing of a 53cm is equivalent to a 56cm on other bikes. Also, the cl price is stupid, since you can buy the same bike new for about $80 more. You need to get the size down first, before you start randomly looking a bikes on cl or elsewhere.
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Old 06-24-11, 03:35 PM   #17
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the 50cm kilo tt was just a tad small for me at 5'6" so it should be perfect for you.
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Old 06-24-11, 08:41 PM   #18
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Lots of Kilo TT sizing advice being thrown around without knowing anything other than the OP's height. Remember the Kilo TT has tall standover relative to top tube length, so it's a little misleading to directly compare it to other more standard frame geometries.
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Old 06-24-11, 08:53 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by bettxc2012 View Post
An interesting little story...

So I went to my LBS yesterday because I've decided I want to start riding fixed. Right now I have a total beater 61cm 10 speed Schwinn World that has seen way better days. Now I'm 5'5" so you can see how that set up really isn't working to well for me. Anyways, I went into the store looking for some advice on how I should get into fixed riding, what type of bike I should get, if I could convert my **** bike into a fixedR gear ect... Long story short, all the employees basically said I was stupid for wanting to ride a fixed gear because it's so "dangerous" and "not worth my time" and that getting a new 2k road bike would change my mind about this whole fixie thing.

So now I come to you guys. Where should I start? Is this bike a lost cause or can I even convert it? Should I just go balls out and get a new bike? Ideally, I would like to build my own without spending an arm and a leg. But I'm open to your opinions so have at it!
Find another shop to go to or get a kilott or something comparable, sounds like the one you went to has their head perpetually up their rear. Any shop should be happy to make a sale regardless of what kind of bike it is. A sale is a sale is a sale.

That being said find another bike/frame, there is just no combination to make that frame size work safely with 5'5". Heck I'm 6'1 and I would need something to boost myself up onto a 61cm frame.
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Old 06-24-11, 08:59 PM   #20
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Lots of Kilo TT sizing advice being thrown around without knowing anything other than the OP's height. Remember the Kilo TT has tall standover relative to top tube length, so it's a little misleading to directly compare it to other more standard frame geometries.
read please.
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Old 06-25-11, 01:24 AM   #21
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I'll dispose of the Schwinn for you
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Old 06-25-11, 01:42 AM   #22
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Im 5'4 and i can barely fit on a 55 top tube, Let alone ride it :/

Consider getting a fitted frame, and starting off there. Read up on sheldonbrown.
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Old 06-25-11, 10:29 AM   #23
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nothing worse than a narrow minded cyclist, but the same can be said for soooo many fixed gear riders who own ten track bikes and not a single roadie or mtb. i agree with the flip and sell the schwinn method. check your local craigslist and see what you get for it cause i live in Portland OR and the mark up on vintage bikes here is ********. you could try and restore is and post it for a trade.
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Old 06-25-11, 10:52 AM   #24
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Go to craigslist

sell your current set up

buy an old ten speed-check out the thrift stores you find gems there

buy an oring8 formula rear wheel and your set

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Old 06-25-11, 11:20 AM   #25
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Help! Lbs is full of anti-fixed gear idiots!
Oh well. My LBS is full of kids that only care about BMX. Luckily in the big city a few miles south of me there are gobs of bike shops with a wide variety of specialties.

Maybe you have some other shops in your general vicinity.

And +1 on find your frame size. You need to find out what fits. Maybe take some test rides on some of those $2K road bikes to get an idea of the size you need. Try to dig up a couple that have relatively horizontal top tubes.

I'm 5'6 with long legs and I like 52-54 cm mostly.
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