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Looking for a frame with short wheelbase and horizontal dropouts

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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)

Looking for a frame with short wheelbase and horizontal dropouts

Old 09-26-10, 05:53 PM
  #1  
aaronjg
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Looking for a frame with short wheelbase and horizontal dropouts

I've got about $700 to spend on a new (or used) frame for my fixed gear. I want something for city riding. I want something with good handling to jump around potholes. It seems like the current trend in new frames is to either have vertical dropouts for road bikes, or the track fork ends for fixed gear.

Additionally most of the track frames that I look at don't have much clearance for large tires or fenders (and most don't even have holes for fender mounts).

Can anyone recommend a frame that would fit my needs? The best one I have come across so far is the Steel Wool Sweet City, which has an eccentric bottom bracket for chain tension. However it looks like it is only sold in Canada.

Also, I'm going to go to the trexlertown swap meet next weekend, so I could probably find a vintage frame if someone could recommend what to look for.
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Old 09-26-10, 05:58 PM
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Allen
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Welcome to SS/FG from Framebuilding.
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Old 09-26-10, 06:04 PM
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Save up some money for a geekhouse and get exactly what you want.
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Old 09-26-10, 07:00 PM
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Kilo WT

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Old 09-26-10, 07:05 PM
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Surly Steamroller? Not exactly "short" wheelbase, but it fits most of your needs.
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Old 09-26-10, 07:15 PM
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Short wheelbase and quick handling <> clearance for wide tires + fenders

I have a Kilo WT and it has room for large tires and fenders, and has threaded mounting points for fenders (Surly SR doesn't), however, it's not a super quick handler like my track racing bikes. You have to decide what is more important, laser quick handling or practical utility.
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Old 09-27-10, 05:25 PM
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Some of these bikes might interest you:
2010 Jamis Sputnik (had an '08)
Salsa Casseroll (want one)
On-one Lincolnshire Poacher
Redline 925 (have an '06 and love it)
Kilo WT
Voodoo Maji
Civia Bryant

these have cantilever brakes, but take even wider tires:
Surly Crosscheck (have an '09)
On-one Il Pompino (have an '08)
IRO Rob Roy (had an '05)
Bianchi San Jose
Voodoo Nakisi (don't get a Wazoo, though)

Feel free to ask about specifics or opinions on any of them.
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Old 09-27-10, 08:05 PM
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Thanks for all the great suggestions.

Tejano: Is the tradeoff between handling and tires a question of what tires are on the bike, or is it more of frame geometry.

One: You sure have a lot of bikes! Thanks for the suggestion of the Casseroll, that's really close to what I'm looking for. The Lincolnshire poacher looks great too, just needs mounts for fenders.

I looked at both the Jamis and Redline. They downgraded the tubing on the 2011 version of the Jamis so I'm seeing if I can find a 2010 model. Also as far as I can tell they don't sell just framesets...

The Kilo WT also looks pretty good.

I actually have $700 to spend on the frame. I've got pretty much all the other components. (Old frame was damaged in a wreck.) So I could go with something a little nicer. I had my eye on the Soma Van Ness, but wanted something with a little more clearance.

Last edited by aaronjg; 09-27-10 at 08:07 PM. Reason: '
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Old 09-27-10, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by aaronjg View Post
Tejano: Is the tradeoff between handling and tires a question of what tires are on the bike, or is it more of frame geometry.
How quickly a bike steers is basically a function of geometry. However, bikes designed to accomodate large section tires tend towards a slacker head angle, more fork offset (rake), longer chainstays and overall wheelbase, which slows down steering. Also, large section front tires will slow down steering, although rear tires have no impact. Not that my Kilo WT steers like a tractor, it's just nowhere near as nimble as my Bianchi Pista Concept track racer.
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Old 09-29-10, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by gt35built View Post
Save up some money for a geekhouse and get exactly what you want.
Seriously? For 1200 I'd much rather go with someone that's been doing this awhile.
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Old 10-07-10, 04:35 AM
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Thanks for all the advice! I ended up getting a used 80s Italian road frame and I plan on doing it up as a conversion. I'll post pics when it's done.
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Old 10-07-10, 06:18 AM
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Originally Posted by jim-bob View Post
Seriously? For 1200 I'd much rather go with someone that's been doing this awhile.
What company has been doing custom fixed gear bikes for a while?
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Old 10-07-10, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by gt35built View Post
What company has been doing custom fixed gear bikes for a while?

yamaguchi
waterford
bob jackson
this could be a really long list...I would venture a guess that most custom bike builders have built many a custom track frame in their day. FG riding on the street isn't exactly a recent phenomenon.
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