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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 07-02-12, 02:23 PM   #1
ak.
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New Fixed Gear . . . Need Some Real Opinions

Hello,

I am completely new to the entire fixed gear community. I have been lurking this site for some time now . . . scanning the many pages of Motobecane Track and Kilo TT threads. I currently live in the East Bay (Berkeley) of NorCal and I am looking to get a solid commuter bike to get to class on, have fun riding around on the weekends, go to the grocery store, etc. I want something that will be durable and last a long time, but will also be fun to ride semi-long distances on around town. So, among all the research I have done, I decided that I want wither the Motobecane Track, SE Draft Lite, or Mercier Kilo TT. I don't have all the money in the world so I wanted to get the best bike I could for about $400 or below.

Here were my potential setups:

Motobecane Track:
Origin-8 Bullhorns
Tiagra Front Brake
Avid Brake Lever
SRAM Tape
COST: $350

SE Draft Lite:
Sunlite of Fyxation Bullhorns
SRAM Tape
COST: $365-$375 including a freewheel and kryptonite u-lock

Mercier Kilo TT:
Sunlite of Fyxation Bullhorns
SRAM Tape
COST: $400-$410

I have definitely thought that I may have to replace the pedals/cages, and saddle. But I would have to do that with all of the bikes anyways, so the cost would be relatively the same. What do you guys think? I haven't heard much about the SE Draft Lite (besides that it is heavier and less forgiving than Cromoly). I hear that the Kilo TT has better stock parts than the Motobecane Track.

What are your suggestions?

Thank you so much in advance. This has been a hard decision thus far.
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Old 07-02-12, 03:12 PM   #2
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If you are in a hurry, and I haven't checked stock lately, but the Kilo TT may be out of your size. If that is the case, the Moto Track might be your ticket. I have one and for the sub $300 price tag it is not bad at all. The frame is not bad and the wheels are decent enough. Good luck and welcome to the forums!
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Old 07-02-12, 06:53 PM   #3
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The draft lite is by far the weakest bike on the list. The other two use some kind of odd parts, but the SE has somethings about it that make it very very hard to change things around. And it is the worst frame of the three.

The kilo or the Moto will be pretty similar and you will be fine with either of them, just make sure you get the right size.
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Old 07-02-12, 07:05 PM   #4
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You didn't mention your relative level of fitness, comfort on bikes, weight or other attributes... With that said, if the stock is available. I'd go for the Kilo...

I rode the Se and hated it. I'm a bigger dude, and the Kilo was fine as long as you measure and get the right frame. There is plenty you can do to the bike as well...
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Old 07-03-12, 11:39 AM   #5
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Thanks for all of the quick responses!

I am 6'3" and 195lbs. I am a pretty athletic guy but I have never gotten into the cycling world until now. I know that the SE will be much heavier than the other two options, but initially I thought that would mean that is is more durable. It sounds like that is not the case at all. I am not necessarily in a rush, so the Kilo TT is definitely still a strong option for me. I just want to get the best bike for my money . . . usually I am really good at doing that when I buy other things, but since bikes have so many components and aspects, I am having trouble doing that here!!

Thanks
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Old 07-03-12, 11:47 AM   #6
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If you're really wanting the best bang for your buck, put 50 more bucks toward a kilo TT Pro.

For the 50 bucks, you get a 110 dollar crankset, and a pretty damn solid wheelset, with sealed bearings.
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Old 07-03-12, 11:50 AM   #7
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Agree with those who vote against the SE Draft Lite. The SE Draft is not a bike that should even be considered. It's like a WalMart bike essentially. Everything about it is inadequate unless you plan to ride only 1 or 2 miles a week, and even then...

I ride an SE Lager, and THAT is actually the entry level SE bike. Bare bones, basic no frills, solid frame but fairly weak components (stem, bars, seat, chainring).
But I bought my Lager in '09 and it's an '08 model. Nowadays SE seems to be targeting a different audience. The more recent Lagers look more trashy/flashy, whereas the 2008 model is ugly as sin but fairly solid and decently equipped. So yeah, stay away from the Draft Lite. The last Draft I saw in person was scary. I wouldn't trust it or ride it even if you gave it to me for free.
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Old 07-03-12, 11:50 AM   #8
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I just got the Track in mink blue and am mostly happy with it. I wanted the TT Pro but it was out of stock.. some of the TT and Stripper sizes are still available in various sizes. I recall reading somewhere that they wouldn't get new inventory on the Kilos until late fall - too late for me.

Use this to find your size: http://www.competitivecyclist.com/za...LCULATOR_INTRO

I'm basically a FG n00b but learned quite a bit by lurking around here for a few weeks. Feel free to post your results if you need help with sizing on any specific bike model. FWIW, I'm 5'7" with a 30" inseam and went with the 49cm Moto Track. It takes some getting used to (coming from a hybrid bike) but I think it's the right fit.
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Old 07-03-12, 10:02 PM   #9
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Okay great! So I guess I can rule out the SE Draft Lite. Then I am down to choose between the:

-Moto Track for $350 (with origin8 bullhorns, sram tape, and a front brake/lever)

-Mercier Kilo TT for $400 (with sunlite bullhorns - or fyxation bullhorns/pursuit bars, sram tape)

-Mercier Kilo TT Pro for $500 (with origin8 bullhorns, sram tape)

I assume that I will want to replace the seat for a more comfortable ride. I was thinking about the Charge Spoon or something like the Cutter Cyclical or Selle Royal Contour Microtex. But that will end up setting me back another $30 or so. Also, I know I will have to replace the pedals . . . where MKS are $24 without clips/straps, or maybe a cheaper option like Aventir which is $18 for everything?? (link: http://www.amazon.com/Avenir-Alloy-P...eywords=pedals). Regardless, those upgrades would end up being $70 or so.

What do you guys think I should do? Go cheaper and get the Track, with spare $$ to buy these parts. Or go a bit more expensive and pick up the Kilo TT??

Thanks!
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Old 07-03-12, 10:23 PM   #10
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As much as I like my Moto Track, I still think it is better to get the best bike you can, save a bit, and then upgrade when you can. The TT Pro really looks like a great bike and if you have the coin to do so, by all means do and upgrade on down the road (yes, pun intended) when more $$ rolls in.
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Old 07-03-12, 10:24 PM   #11
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Do what I did!
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Old 07-04-12, 07:05 AM   #12
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Agree with those who vote against the SE Draft Lite. The SE Draft is not a bike that should even be considered. It's like a WalMart bike essentially. Everything about it is inadequate unless you plan to ride only 1 or 2 miles a week, and even then...
Its really not that bad. My sqrlfriend rides one, and, built properly and checked often, it's ok stock. It's just a bit heavy.
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Old 07-04-12, 09:02 AM   #13
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No offense but she's a girl. Have you ridden it?
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Old 07-04-12, 09:11 AM   #14
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It's just a bottom end bike. Better than the FIXIE THRUSTER, not as good as most of the BD options. For a light, occasional rider, I wouldn't see an issue with it.
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Old 07-04-12, 09:30 AM   #15
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It's just a bottom end bike. Better than the FIXIE THRUSTER, not as good as most of the BD options. For a light, occasional rider, I wouldn't see an issue with it.
Right on.
All I meant by my comment was that girls typically weigh less and don't always punish their bikes the way a lot of men do.
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Old 07-04-12, 11:51 AM   #16
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I have ridden it, actually. Feels ok to me. And she and I are actually pretty close in weight. But its true, she doesn't ride as much/as far/as hard as I do.
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