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Utility Cycling Want to haul groceries, beer, maybe even your kids? You don't have to live car free to put your bike to use as a workhorse. Here's the place to share and learn about the bicycle as a utility vehicle.

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Old 04-09-13, 01:33 PM   #1
GeraldF
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MTB to single speed converts: miss fat tires?

For years I road a mountain bike with 2" tires. Now I have 1.6" tires. The thing I like best about having wide tires is that I hardly ever have to add air to the tires. On average I go one whole month before adding any air.

I'm considering getting a single speed bike, outfitted with chainguard and fenders. My one concern is that I'll get annoyed with having to pump up the tires frequently. Will I have to bust out the pump every week? Every three days? It seems most single speed bikes come with 700x28 or 700x32 tires.

Anyone ever make the switch from MTB to single speed for commuting/utility cycling in an urban area? Any regrets? Thanks.
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Old 04-12-13, 02:48 AM   #2
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you can get big tires for your single speed too.. or even turn an old mtb into a single speed
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Old 04-12-13, 07:38 AM   #3
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you can get big tires for your single speed too.. or even turn an old mtb into a single speed
I hear some single speeds, such as the Mercier Kilo TT are especially wide-tire compatible. As I research various models of single speed bikes, is there a way to distinguish which single speeds will be wide-tire compatible? I also want to add cheap plastic fenders. I'm starting to doubt that I'll be able to fit both wide tires and fenders underneath the break pulleys. There tends to be minimal clearance.
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Old 04-12-13, 08:41 AM   #4
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i have a motobecane fantom cross uno that i just put 700x38c tires on and could fit fenders too. the kilo tt is sold by the same people who sell the motobecane. one thing about the motobecane is that it has cantilever brakes which give you more room to fit tires and fenders. the main problem i'm having with clearance is depending on the gearing and tire size, the tire can rub the seat tube and/or not leave room for fenders. I'd like even bigger tires but i doubt i could go much larger than 700x42 or so

if you want room for fenders and fat tires, just go with an old mountain bike
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Old 05-30-13, 05:53 AM   #5
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I use a single speed mountain bike for commuting/utility in London. Works fine.
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Old 06-03-13, 02:47 PM   #6
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i have a nice steel bodied floor pump
so that regularly adding pressure is not a chore
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Old 06-03-13, 07:25 PM   #7
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My one concern is that I'll get annoyed with having to pump up the tires frequently.
The added rubber of a thorn resistant innertube adds weight , but the thicker rubber is able to hold pressure for Months.
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Old 06-30-13, 12:42 PM   #8
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you can get big tires for your single speed too.. or even turn an old mtb into a single speed
Or buy/turn a new (bike into a) singlespeed (you made it sound as if they're an extinct species there )


I'm confused why it is that you think you'll have to add air more frequently to your tires because the bike's a SS anyways (even with skinnier rubber...),the tires know not how many gears you have There's no distinction between being a mtn biker and being a SS'er,all my mtn bikes are SS's,and half of my road-ish bikes have slider drops and derailluer hangers for switching back and forth between SS and gears. There are lots of options available to you,my friend.
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Old 06-30-13, 12:51 PM   #9
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My pump is next to my bikes and take two seconds. No it doesn't bother me.
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Old 08-22-13, 08:54 PM   #10
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My 32s take air nearly everyday but I have light tubes. A pump or two and it is ready. LC
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Old 08-26-13, 08:34 PM   #11
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I Put together a single speed , it was using an MTB frame , & wheels (rear, re-dished freewheel type.)

nobody says it cannot be both ,,
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Old 08-28-13, 11:24 AM   #12
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From all the home made videos I have seen of people bicycling in London, it seriously looks like something out of a Mad Max movie, my hat off to all those that brave the traffic out there on bicycles!
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Old 09-12-13, 08:14 AM   #13
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Check out the Surly website, lots of wide tire options.
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