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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 04-14-12, 10:19 PM   #1
bfloyd6969
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Chain tensioner for conversions

As I am converting a road bike to a single speed for a family member, I am wondering if there are any considerable differences in quality between the lower priced versions, such as the Nashbar and Sette (actually the Nashbar branded and Sette branded look like they could be from the same maker):

http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...2_175492_-1___
http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/167...-Tensioner.htm

and a more expensive tensioner like the Surly:

http://www.jensonusa.com/!-3zGh7FB1-...rly-Singleator

Does the old adage "you get what you pay for" apply here? I should mention that this will be road only riding, no cross. Thanks.
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Old 04-14-12, 10:24 PM   #2
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You said single speed, but just to be safe, this isn't going to be for a fixed right?
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Old 04-15-12, 12:13 AM   #3
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^^ correct.
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Old 04-15-12, 02:11 AM   #4
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The Surly looks a lot nicer, but I'd wager that either one will get the job done just fine.
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Old 04-15-12, 02:21 AM   #5
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I have the Nashbar one. It is ok and will do what you want it to do.
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Old 04-15-12, 02:43 AM   #6
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Thanks guys.
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Old 04-15-12, 06:34 AM   #7
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If you're really on a budget, an old RD with a spoke in the place of the cable (clamped by the cable clamp with elbow in barrel adjuster) to hold position works just about as well. Doesn't look as cool though.
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Old 04-15-12, 08:20 AM   #8
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If money isn't an object, I'm thrilled with my Paul Tensioner. It seems very sturdy and should last me a long time. Looking around, they can be had from between $65-$75. I personally looked and waited awhile and got mine for $50 awhile back.

Oh yea, the ones they are making now are compatible with 1/8" chains.
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Old 04-15-12, 03:05 PM   #9
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Thanks for the info. Money is not an object, to an extent. I read about the Melvin and it looks nice, but I wanted to keep it a single pulley. I also read that people seem to like the Soulcraft Convert. That one seems to be one of the most expensive, but well liked.
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Old 04-15-12, 04:01 PM   #10
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Why wont a tensioner work with fixed? Ive never been able to figure it out, I just know everyone recomends against it
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Old 04-15-12, 04:42 PM   #11
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Why wont a tensioner work with fixed? Ive never been able to figure it out, I just know everyone recomends against it
When you backpedal the spring in the tensioner with depress. You will more than likely drop your chain and die.
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Old 04-15-12, 04:48 PM   #12
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drop your chain and die.
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drop your chain and die.
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Originally Posted by Nagrom_ View Post
drop your chain and die.
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Originally Posted by Nagrom_ View Post
drop your chain and die.
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drop your chain and die.
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drop your chain and die.
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Old 04-15-12, 05:26 PM   #13
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Old 04-15-12, 07:26 PM   #14
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Old 04-16-12, 01:22 AM   #15
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I know there's mixed thoughts on them, but wouldn't a chain stay mounted tensioner work for fixed?
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Old 04-16-12, 02:32 AM   #16
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I know there's mixed thoughts on them, but wouldn't a chain stay mounted tensioner work for fixed?
Only if it was completely rigid (couldn't swing) after being set up. At which point it would add friction.
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Old 04-16-12, 10:01 AM   #17
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Only if it was completely rigid (couldn't swing) after being set up. At which point it would add friction.
And would also kinda defeat the point, as it would have the same effect as removing a handfull of links.
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Old 04-16-12, 12:45 PM   #18
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And would also kinda defeat the point, as it would have the same effect as removing a handfull of links.
The one benefit I could see is not needing a "magic" gear or chain length with vertical dropouts. I guess if one could be designed for sideways (chainline) and vertical (chain tension) adjustment, it might do the trick without adding too much drag.
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