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Choice of gear ratio for single speed BiCycle for a handicapped person

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)

Choice of gear ratio for single speed BiCycle for a handicapped person

Old 10-02-13, 08:56 AM
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Choice of gear ratio for single speed BiCycle for a handicapped person

Dear All, Am a new entrant to the Forum, intending to resume cycling which I had given up forty two years ago when I was twenty. I have my single speed BiCycle, 44T / 18T x 26 with freewheel. I have had severe knee injuries, having a reconstructed left ACL and completely damaged right knee. My swimming gives me relief from the constant pain and I keep my single crutch on hand for gradient or slopes, even while walking. I can pedal with difficulty. Though I have browsed the net for some guidance, I am confused as to what cogs I may change in order to cycle with my handicaps as above. I do hope there will be a response for my post and I am sincerely hoping that there will not be ridicule for my aspirations to achieve some mobility.
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Old 10-02-13, 09:04 AM
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Nobody is going to make fun of you for wanting to ride. In your case you are going to want to go with some particularly light gearing. It makes some difference where you live. Do you have hills that you are going to need to go up? The best way to find out a good gear, may be to borrow someones bike with gears and start in the lowest gear and work your way up until you find one that is comfortable. If you do it this way you need to make sure that the bike you borrow has the same size wheels as your own bike.
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Old 10-02-13, 01:16 PM
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I would not recommend singlespeed or fixed gear in your case.
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Old 10-03-13, 01:38 AM
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Originally Posted by seau grateau
I would not recommend singlespeed or fixed gear in your case.
I tend to agree. You don't need to go to some multi-speed horror but if your knees are wobbly, it's nice being able to choose a lower gear when needed. Even if you do find a gear that works for you in your area, simply getting a head wind will find you in too high a gear.

You don't need a mountain bike (too heavy probably) but you can fit mtb gearing to any bike so I'd hunt through the shops, find a bike you like, then consider the gearing which is easy enough to change either by fitting a wider spread of gears at the back or smaller chainrings at the front.

Down the track, if you find you don't need all the gears, it's not hard to convert your bike into a SS and at that point, you'll have already worked out what gear you need.
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