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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 09-29-12, 03:12 PM   #1
Frankfast
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Single Speed - Front Brake Only

I'm putting together a single speed. Being a newbie, is it ok to build it with front brake only. This is not a fixed speed.
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Old 09-29-12, 03:35 PM   #2
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Two brakes. Front brake isn't enough if you're freewheeling. What if it fails?
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Old 09-29-12, 03:55 PM   #3
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Well some people will say one is enough. I personally would go with two, just for that extra safety and stopping power. But I hate dealing with even one brake.

I would go fixed over single speed anyway. The less there is to go wrong, the less there is to manage.
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Old 09-29-12, 04:09 PM   #4
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So all the bikes I see posted with one brake are fixed gear? Not sure. I might try fixed gear because I like the simplicity. I definitely don't want a bike with a pair of brakes. I already have that.
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Old 09-29-12, 04:11 PM   #5
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go fixed for a few weeks, see what's up. then you can go no brakes
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Old 09-29-12, 04:17 PM   #6
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They're fixed, man.

And like pwebb said, if you give it a try, you won't want to go back. Well, you might at first, but you just need to try to tough it out for the first week. Then it becomes second nature.
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Old 09-29-12, 04:20 PM   #7
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I'd rather have only a rear than just a front if I was running 1 brake. I won't have the stopping power but I can also 'slam' on it if I have to. if someone cuts you off with a freewheel/front brake setup you're eating **** one way or the other
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Old 09-29-12, 04:35 PM   #8
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At the limit of how fast you can brake, the front is doing all the work anyway, so you won't lose much by not having a rear brake. If you're doing long descents it's nice to have two so you can use the rear for some drag in straight sections and let the front cool off, then use the front going into turns to let the rear cool off.
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Old 09-29-12, 04:46 PM   #9
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I'd rather have only a rear than just a front if I was running 1 brake. I won't have the stopping power but I can also 'slam' on it if I have to. if someone cuts you off with a freewheel/front brake setup you're eating **** one way or the other
Rear only works for coaster brake bikes - and I would think the stopping force at the rim is stronger than at the hub.
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Old 09-29-12, 04:51 PM   #10
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So all the bikes I see posted with one brake are fixed gear? Not sure. I might try fixed gear because I like the simplicity. I definitely don't want a bike with a pair of brakes. I already have that.
Almost all of them are, but I know of at least two people who run single speeds with a front brake only.

The difference between a single speed and a geared bike is still pretty significant though. You might try that and see. For me, I thought single was the best until I tried fixed.
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Old 09-29-12, 04:58 PM   #11
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I'd rather have only a rear than just a front if I was running 1 brake. I won't have the stopping power but I can also 'slam' on it if I have to. if someone cuts you off with a freewheel/front brake setup you're eating **** one way or the other
Please don't perpetuate this exaggerated fear of the front brake. Learn to use your front brake (wow, learning to correctly use your equipment) and you will be able to "slam" on it without flipping over.

Slamming on a rear brake will initiate a skid, which will only cause you have even less control over your bicycle and increase your likely hood of crashing.

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Old 09-29-12, 06:21 PM   #12
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Rear only works for coaster brake bikes - and I would think the stopping force at the rim is stronger than at the hub.
lolwut?
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Old 09-29-12, 06:26 PM   #13
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Please don't perpetuate this exaggerated fear of the front brake. Learn to use your front brake (wow, learning to correctly use your equipment) and you will be able to "slam" on it without flipping over.

Slamming on a rear brake will initiate a skid, which will only cause you have even less control over your bicycle and increase your likely hood of crashing.
I think I need a video of you doing some real speed and 'slamming' on your front brake disaster free!

Of course I wouldn't actually ride a freewheel with only one brake either.
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Old 09-29-12, 06:32 PM   #14
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You guys are right. Using your front brake will flip you, using your back will make you fishtail and lose it.

This is why I don't use any brakes. OP, don't use brakes.
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Old 09-29-12, 06:37 PM   #15
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You guys are right. Using your front brake will flip you, using your back will make you fishtail and lose it.

This is why I don't use any brakes. OP, don't use brakes.
Can't stop, don't want to.
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Old 09-29-12, 06:48 PM   #16
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Seems to me that the conclusion is that if I use a freewheel I should have both front and rear brakes but if it's a fixed speed there are three options, front, rear or none.
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Old 09-29-12, 06:54 PM   #17
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front, both, or none. A rear brake only on a fixed is redundant.
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Old 09-29-12, 06:54 PM   #18
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Fixed w a rear brake is rare
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Old 09-29-12, 06:58 PM   #19
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Fixed w a rear brake is unnecessary
Fixed
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Old 09-29-12, 06:58 PM   #20
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Fixed w a rear brake is rare
So is a fixed with two brakes.

OP, majority of people who ride fixed are either brakeless or front brake. Most single speeders ride with at least a front brake and usually two brakes.

Though there was that epic dude who rode with his lever on his seatpost...
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Old 09-29-12, 06:59 PM   #21
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lolwut?
Misuse of puctuation... For it to read better I should have typed, "Rear only, works for coaster brake bikes" - meaning the rear brake alone works for coaster brake equipped bikes.

What does wut mean?
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Old 09-29-12, 07:04 PM   #22
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y'all cats need to learn how to use brakes.

front = usual brake
back = **** im going to die brake
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Old 09-29-12, 07:13 PM   #23
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So all the bikes I see posted with one brake are fixed gear? Not sure. I might try fixed gear because I like the simplicity. I definitely don't want a bike with a pair of brakes. I already have that.
No, there are definitely folks out there riding single speeds with just the front brake. Generally their backup brakes are either a tree or a person.
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Old 09-29-12, 07:21 PM   #24
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So is a fixed with two brakes.

OP, majority of people who ride fixed are either brakeless or front brake. Most single speeders ride with at least a front brake and usually two brakes.

Though there was that epic dude who rode with his lever on his seatpost...
Thanks, got it. I even think I understand it.
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Old 09-29-12, 09:38 PM   #25
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Misuse of puctuation... For it to read better I should have typed, "Rear only, works for coaster brake bikes" - meaning the rear brake alone works for coaster brake equipped bikes.

What does wut mean?
I see. Or "rear-only works for coaster brakes."

It does, but it's easy to lock up. Funny bc I JUST built a coaster brake bike today and it's fine for a drag but I'm going to put a front on.

What does wut mean? Wut does what mean?
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