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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 08-22-12, 05:15 PM   #1
spectastic
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thinking about converting to singlespeed, ratio suggestions?

I have a short commute of 3 miles, and my town is relatively flat, and I basically never change gears unless it's really windy or really hot. I was wondering what it would be like to ride with a singlespeed. After some intense gear counting, I determined that I typically use the ratios 52:15 (for 700c) and 52:18 (for 27"). But I also realize that ss cranks are a lot smaller, so I'm hoping to get some suggestions for the gear ratio.
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Old 08-22-12, 05:17 PM   #2
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http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...imer-for-Newbs
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Old 08-22-12, 05:30 PM   #3
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haha my bad
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Old 08-24-12, 01:51 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spectastic View Post
I have a short commute of 3 miles, and my town is relatively flat, and I basically never change gears unless it's really windy or really hot. I was wondering what it would be like to ride with a singlespeed. After some intense gear counting, I determined that I typically use the ratios 52:15 (for 700c) and 52:18 (for 27"). But I also realize that ss cranks are a lot smaller, so I'm hoping to get some suggestions for the gear ratio.
This is what I don't get: the diameter difference between a 27" and a 700C wheel is much smaller than the gear ratio difference between a 52:15 vs. 52:18.

That said, as a longtime SS cyclist (feel free to call me a singlespeed fanboi), I think that the lower gear ratio of the two, 52:18, would perhaps suit you better for riding across town, because of the frequent stop-start situations. You'll appreciate the better acceleration. If your commute where 10+ miles with little to no traffic (or traffic signs), I'd suggest the higher.

Regarding cranks: I've always used 172.5 cm or 175 cm cranks on my SS bikes. You'd need shorter cranks (I assume) if you were riding fixed gear, for safer cornering. An experienced fixed gear cyclist might correct me, if I'm wrong.
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Old 08-25-12, 08:57 AM   #5
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I've got a 52:18 ration on 700's with 165 cranks in a town with some big hills. Takes a little getting used to to go down the hills on a fixed gear with no brakes, but it's not bad for getting around.
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Old 08-25-12, 11:06 AM   #6
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If the crankset on the pre conversion bike is a 52/42, use the 42. Not only better chain line, but 42/16 is pretty much perfect for daily riding.
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Old 08-25-12, 11:32 AM   #7
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remember... gear ratio is proportional to penis size... just sayin'

having said that I ride a 53/11
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Old 09-02-12, 04:39 PM   #8
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Take a look at Sheldon Brown's gear calculator, to get an idea of gear comparisons http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gears/

I agree with Dan, that a 42/16, which with 700x23 tires gives 69" of progression is optimal for a variety of terrain/conditions. I've used 49/19, which gives 67.8", for years, and it's worked well for me, flats or hills.
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Old 09-02-12, 10:12 PM   #9
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don't take this offensively, but I realized that there is no real advantage spending money to switch to ss. shalom
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