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Mounting & dismount issues

Old 09-03-19, 06:46 PM
  #1  
thehammerdog
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Mounting & dismount issues



Fixie by lake
Ok, I struggle with getting both on and off bike need insights into helpful tips
my seat is high so cannot reach ground easily when dismounting
i click out of pedals let bike roll until i can jump off
looks feels crazy
help

Last edited by thehammerdog; 09-03-19 at 06:51 PM.
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Old 09-03-19, 09:44 PM
  #2  
Loose Chain
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If that is the correct saddle height extension for your anatomy, well, the bike might be a little small. I have never fit a track bike but I have fit a lot of road racing frames, cycle cross and MTBs. My starting point for saddle height setting is 0.883 X PBH. The PBH is your pubic bone height or cycling inseam, barefooted against a wall, a one inch hard bound book shoved up square to the wall until your feet get light. Mark that and use that as your PBH. Multiply by 0.883 and set that as a STARTING point saddle height as measured from center of crank to the crown of the seat along the seat tube. Shoes, cleats, some other bio-mechanical differences, peddling style etc. can alter this STARTING point but generally not by more than about 0.5cm.
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Old 09-04-19, 05:51 AM
  #3  
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I'm not going to dispute Loose Chain's diagnosis that your bike may be too big, and am not in the mood to make that conundrum into the discussion here anyway.

But OP - I gotta ask you...how long you been riding bikes?
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Old 09-04-19, 06:39 AM
  #4  
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EDIT: This is NOT a slam on the OP, and you would be surprised at how often milder forms of this issue show up.

More times than I care to count, I was on club rides with folks who had transitioned from spin bikes to the road, or hadn't ridden since childhood, and would find myself wincing when the group tried to start from a standing stop at a traffic signal. Sure, this is a basic skill, but how often is it taught? I used to bite my tongue as I watched awkward mounts and dismounts, but since the OP asked -

1. Straddle the bike with both feet on the ground, over the top tube with the saddle behind you
2 Squeeze your front brake lever to immobilize the front wheel
3. Pick one foot to stay on the ground and the other to start pedaling with. Clip in with that foot, the other foot remaining on the ground.
4. Fixed-gear specific - Still squeezing the front brake to stabilize the bike, push slightly down and forward on the handlebars and rotate your clipped in foot to around a 2:00-3:00 position, then set the rear wheel back down.
5. When ready to roll, release the front brake, rise and stand on the clipped-in foot and push off with the other foot. As your clipped in foot descends, find your saddle. Now you have both hands, backside and one foot in place as you locate the other pedal with the free foot and clip in as smoothly as possible.

While learning this and internalizing the movements, focus on making all motions as smooth and efficient as possible. You don't jump on the bike, you flow up onto it and then glide into movement. My observation is that other road users who see you start like this will treat you more respectfully.

Stopping?
Slow down and unclip the pedal you are going to plant on the ground.
As the bike slows to a stop come forward out of the saddle and follow that unclipped foot to the ground as you apply the last little bit of brake power to stop the bike. You stop, your free foot plants you, you hold onto the front brake to further stabilize you, then rotate the cranks to a happy point and unclip the other foot and remove it from the pedal. Dismount.

Last edited by rustystrings61; 09-04-19 at 09:15 AM.
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Old 09-04-19, 09:07 AM
  #5  
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The issue the OP has is dismounting from a fixie. I understand his pain. The pedals are always going! That involves some technique different from a freewheel bicycle.

I only mentioned saddle height because I suspect an overly high saddle might be contributing to the difficulty so provided the Lemond Formula for a Saddle Height Sanity Check and reference only.
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Old 09-04-19, 01:49 PM
  #6  
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The saddle cannot be over height. There is a maximum height of saddle relative to the pedal at the bottom of its travel: that maximum is the length of your leg, with a very slight bend in it. If the saddle is significantly higher than that, you can't pedal.

So on a bike with a freewheel, you have the pedal at the bottom of its travel and use that as a step as you swing your other leg over and behind the saddle as you freewheel to a stop. Then you step down onto the trailing foot.

On a bike with a fixed wheel, you can actually do the same, but taking care to come to a stop, or very nearly so, and, if necessary, holding the bike on the brakes.

If you put one foot on the floor then try to bring your leg over, it can be difficult, especially on a bike with a high bottom bracket (and therefore a higher seat). That's why I have never done that on any bike I've owned for 50 years.

So, long story short: use the bottom pedal as a step.
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Old 09-04-19, 02:55 PM
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The answer is many years have many well fitting bikes from titanium to carbon
this my first fixie Craigslist find and seems not well suited for me but trying to make it work setup as closely as possible to road bikes
so now do have any suggestions as i find the fixed thing unique to get on or off
Originally Posted by IAmSam View Post
I'm not going to dispute Loose Chain's diagnosis that your bike may be too big, and am not in the mood to make that conundrum into the discussion here anyway.

But OP - I gotta ask you...how long you been riding bikes?
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Old 09-04-19, 04:28 PM
  #8  
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Sheldon Brown describes an elegant fixed gear dismount technique. It takes a little practice, but once mastered works well:

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/fixed.html#mounting
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Old 09-05-19, 03:43 PM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by Mikefule View Post
The saddle cannot be over height. There is a maximum height of saddle relative to the pedal at the bottom of its travel: that maximum is the length of your leg, with a very slight bend in it. If the saddle is significantly higher than that, you can't pedal.
I would disagree. One can have their saddle several centimeters too high and still ride, if they're oblivious to the fact that they are pointing their toes downward and rocking their hips to do it. A mild case of that happened to me when I was still learning how to set up my bikes to ride, and it does make it harder to mount and dismount.

OP seems to have made it a long time in riding bikes with the bad habit of mounting/dismounting directly to/from the saddle...
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Old 09-15-19, 12:47 PM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
The answer is many years have many well fitting bikes from titanium to carbon
I find the dismount the least graceful (and I'm not coordinated enough to use Sheldon's method!). On freewheeling bikes, you are probably used to unclipping one foot and coasting as you stop then putting the unclipped foot down. With a fixed gear, I do find that I can't get the same "stop exactly where I want" sort of thing, but I do unclip one foot while slowing and then while the clipped-in foot is coming past the 6:00 position on the upstroke I will come off the saddle and use the clipped-in foot to backpedal and help with the final stop as I put my free foot down.

Starting is just like any other bike except that instead of using the freewheel to help position my pedals for starting, I will apply the front brake, push forward on the bars to lift the rear wheel off the ground and then use my clipped in foot to position the pedal. At that point, you are ready to start off. Getting the other foot clipped in may take a bit of practice if you are used to clipping in while coasting. Mentally getting over the habit of clipping in at a certain point in the pedal rotation may help. The pedals are rotating at a very consistent rate though, so with a quick glance down I find I can often catch the pedal wherever it is in its cycle.
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Old 09-15-19, 01:15 PM
  #11  
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Roll to a near stop and then scoot forward off the saddle and straddle the top tube. Put a foot down. Then put the other foot down. This is the same technique as dismounting a freewheel bike except that because the FG pedals continue to rotate you have to time it so you don't smack your ankle.
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Old 09-16-19, 01:14 AM
  #12  
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If your saddle is too high your hips will rock. Obviously it can't be 10 feet in the air. I rode with too high of a saddle for a couple years due to listening to fit specs. I think foot size also plays a role. Being a size 11 shoe I can ride a lower saddle than someone my same inseam but with size 8 shoe. As long as you can stretch your legs while riding (by pointing your toes up or down every so often) and it feels good, saddle height should be fine.

The OP shouldn't be riding clipless. Since you have brakes just toss some platforms on their with no straps get comfortable riding a bike. You don't sit on the saddle when stopped.

I guess for me mostly when I stop I leave my right foot in the strap, left foot on the ground, but lean the bike. I am probably on the very nose of the saddle since 90% of the time at a stop grab the seat tube to lift the back wheel and set the pedal.

If you are not used to riding fixed, bikes, clipless and sitting so high up in the cockpit - I can see why dismount may be tricky. Just keep practicing.
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Old 09-16-19, 02:21 AM
  #13  
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Just set the bike off the curb and mount/dismount from there.
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Old 09-20-19, 04:00 PM
  #14  
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To dismount on a fixed gear, come to a complete stop first, unclick and put one foot on ground, regardless of pedal position, then do the same for the other foot. You should do this all within a second of coming to a stop while the bike is upright, obviously. Practice doing this. Learn it, it'll help you during a sudden, panic stop.
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Old 09-20-19, 06:19 PM
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I usually stop, unclip one foot then the other one, the leg that was the last on the pedal goes over the handlebar and top tube, I catch the bike by the stem then.
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Old 09-20-19, 09:01 PM
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I always free my foot from the pedal strap, both sides, before lifting one foot over the tt/ seat & standing on the pedal with the remaining foot while still in motion, allowing my weight to slow it to a halt. I see clip users do the same thing, and they twist the remaining foot during that final motion. I learnt from this vid on youtube - streets of chrome damien riehl.
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