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Track bike frame on the road???

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Track bike frame on the road???

Old 06-02-13, 04:37 PM
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nisqualee
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Track bike frame on the road???

What do you think of outfitting a track bicycle frame for road riding?

The bottom bracket is higher, and I would relax the front fork angle.

This would enable me to ride it at our new local velodrome.

Can you think of any reason that this should not be done? Any down side?

Thank you for your help.
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Old 06-02-13, 05:14 PM
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Bandera 
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Originally Posted by nisqualee View Post
What do you think of outfitting a track bicycle frame for road riding?

The bottom bracket is higher, and I would relax the front fork angle.

This would enable me to ride it at our new local velodrome.

Can you think of any reason that this should not be done? Any down side?
nisqualee,

I have no idea what you mean by "I would relax the front fork angle". Please expand on that.

Decades ago I rode my Zeus track bike on the street for winter fixed-gear training. I was fortunate in that I could have a local machine shop drill the fork ( it was a flat-front design intended for this mod) and fix a front brake, which is essential in my view to survive on the road.

The Zeus rode like a loaded cement truck off the velodrome ( big surprise), was exceedingly nervous on downhills (not a lot of those on the track), required re-gearing and needed clunky but heavy expensive tubulars to survive any minor road-spooge and beat the bejjezus out of my light fast wheels . It was far more comfortable, safer and cost effective to convert a 2nd tier road frame to fixed-gear road status and keep the track bike where it belonged on the velodrome. I'm still riding a proper road frame w/ fixed gearing on the road and enjoying it 40 years on.

Two different requirements, two different machines.
If you intend to compete on the velodrome good on you! Get w/ your local club and ask the coach what's up.

-Bandera
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Last edited by Bandera; 06-02-13 at 05:19 PM.
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Old 06-02-13, 06:55 PM
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In post-war England it was quite common for track racers to only have one bike, which they'd ride to work for their day job during the week and then strip the mudguards and brakes off and run sprints (aka "tubulars") for the weekends to ride on the track.

So I find nothing insurmountable about your proposal. In fact, I built this bike up with similar design ideas:



The head angle is just a smidge slacker than my road bike (73.5deg vs 74deg) and about a centimeter less BB drop than the road bike. I don't ride on a track (nearest velodrome is over three hours away by car), so it's drilled front and rear for brakes. It rides quite well, enough so that it gets more use lately than the road bike. Did a century on the road with it last year, in fact.
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Old 06-02-13, 10:27 PM
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Andrew R Stewart 
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As John has said well, this track on road frame thing has been done for decades. Retain the track/fixie aspects like drop outs and the higher BB. Loose the super short wheelbase and massive toe clip overlap. Add brakes and stir to your liking. Andy.
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Old 06-03-13, 02:17 PM
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I think that most of the issue is well covered in this video, or at least the flip side of it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vn29DvMITu4
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Old 06-03-13, 06:42 PM
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fietsbob 
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Tracks are swept clean, so the fact that there is scant room over the front tire to the under side of the fork crown,
and no Brake Mount , really makes them unsafe for street use ,
but it's now Hip and trendy, to ride a bike thats dangerous to ride in traffic.

JDT has a decent compromise Bike , UK builders even made a fixed Gear Bike for winter training
with Mudguard mounts for racers to work on their pedaling technique between race seasons..
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Old 06-06-13, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by nisqualee View Post
What do you think of outfitting a track bicycle frame for road riding?
The bottom bracket is higher, and I would relax the front fork angle.
This would enable me to ride it at our new local velodrome.
Can you think of any reason that this should not be done? Any down side?
Thank you for your help.
nisquale; Basically every thing Bandera said, but adding the following.

A real track bike is a very specific breed, not to be confused. It looks like a modern Fixie but is a more severe and of lighter construction. Running one on the road will run up your budget for wheels, tires, bandaids, casts, etc.

From early days; I raced 100 mile races thorughout the college years (70's) that were basically mostly hill climbs due to the local area. The team provided a minimally adequate bike for that use. The only bike I had access to on non-race days was a rather scratched up, rattle can painted track frame from the late 1960's which a teammate had picked up in Texas at a Velodrome of some sorts for $5. Supposedly it was "eyetalyan". He had tried to make the frame into a bike (to hopefully sell) by adding 1" Specialized tires, junk wheels, and a Sugino crank with only a somewhat bent 52T outer chainring. Rest of the parts were not so "high quality." There were no brakes and no way to fit them. Slowing was done only by backpressure and prayer.

Anyway, it was what I could get to ride so I rode it everywhere. It was extremely twitchy / nervous and required close concentration to avoid spills. It was also very hard on the rider---much like riding a road bike on cobblestones with hard tires...It would take several hours for the family jewels to stop aching after a ride of more than 10 miles.

So, my advise is NOT to pursue(sic) this much. Recommend instead looking on Craiglist for something more ridable. You should be able to find several ridable bikes and pay not more than $50USD or so each, easily.

/K
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