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Cheap Single speed

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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)

Cheap Single speed

Old 04-26-21, 04:16 AM
  #26  
dirtman
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I figured I'd come back here since its been almost a year now with the Mongoose. I haven't put a ton of miles on it, but enough to say the thing seems pretty well built.
Once I solved the flat tire issues, (several layers cloth tape vs. rubber rim strips), the bike has been 100% reliable.
The Specialized tires are holding up just fine, the wheels haven't needed any attention, and the cranks are doing just fine.
So far I've left the chainguard on it, but its not really needed. It looks better without it.
The bike is heavy for what it is, but I think that's why its doing so well. The 48 spoke wheels seem pretty tough, more than once I've run up over curbs and over a few pot holes that would have killed a normal road wheel, especially under my size and weight.

I do wish the frame was larger. The cranks are higher than an older road bike, likely because they assumed it will be used as a fixed gear bike at some point and without the ability to coast, the cranks need that extra clearance. I however need leg extension, so I run with the saddle all the way up. It still has the original saddle, bars, and grips. the brakes work well and the rims show liittle signs of brake wear.

At first i thought it should have been made lighter but I think that would sacrifice its brute strength.
It pedals easy, and its weight isn't a big deal, especially when you figure me, the guy riding it is over 325 lbs.
I try to do 5 miles every morning weather permitting, its not a bike set up for snow or ice, so it hibernated all winter and I rode an old cruiser I picked up instead.
The issues I have with leg extension on this are not anything new, I have those issues on most all bikes. For a 21" frame, its a tall bike, anyone under 5ft 8 or so would have a hard time riding it. I can stand over 38" high frame, so its 35" stand over height is only a bit lower than the ideal road bike. It sits more like a mountain bike than a road bike in some ways.
It would make a fantastic city bike or messenger bike.
I'm most surprised that the skinny tires and rims have survived the rough rural roads here. I did go through the whole bike and relube everything with some good grease, the stuff they had in it was pretty much like glue. The difference was instantly noticeable.
I run the tires at full rated pressure at 105 psi.
I did buy some black gell grips for it and a better saddle but haven't had any real issues with what it came with, so I haven't made the swap yet. The change was more for cosmetic reasons then anything else, I was never a fan of the red trim. I especially hated the red tires.
Considering they sold these things for $150 towards the end of the run, they were one hell of a bargain.
I figure I've put maybe 1100 miles or so on the bike so far and its been flawless. With my track record of breaking parts, I'm sort of impressed that a Pacific built bike actually turned out to be a decent ride.
The fit and finish are excellent, I'm not thrilled about the color, but its better than the blue/yellow combo they replaced it with. The frame, although heavy is well fitted, welded cleanly, and well painted.
Weight wise its not as heavy as some vintage road bikes, its likely still lighter than say a Schwinn Varsity for likely less than a clean old Schwinn would cost you these days as well.
I have to say it was $20 well spent, ($45 if you count the new tire). I'd likely have felt the same even if I had bought it new myself for full price.
I've been keeping an eye out for a second one with the intent to try and mount up some wider tires on another one but haven't seen any for sale.
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