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)

I'm Not Gettin' It

Old 06-11-14, 10:37 PM
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another convert to bike church. amen.
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Old 06-11-14, 10:38 PM
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if you live where there is hills i see no rear practical application for fixed gears besides wanting to become a better climber. I personally enjoy it because on flat land its faster/easier riding fixed.
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Old 06-11-14, 11:24 PM
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I saw a fixie on CL that had a decent looking Bianchi CroMoly lugged frame and was listed for only $20. The seller/location convinces me the bike was user made (not stolen). I thought I might enjoy at least trying a fixie (it is truly a fixed gear with no freewheel).

I aired up the tires and took it for a spin around the neighborhood. I adjusted to the difference of a fixie fast enough. Admittedly... it was NOT love at first sight. I can't say it wasn't fun ether.... I enjoy cycling.

I am an old retired coot and I enjoy wrenching on the old bicycles in my spare/down time. I set this aside for a winter project. The bike could really use some cleaning, polishing, sticker removal, and some finishing touches. After I am done "working" on it... I think I might put it on a trainer.
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Old 06-13-14, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by cessanfrancisco View Post
Thanks for the input, everyone!
@Cute Boy Horse - You may be right about the gear ratio thing. I am using a 46T chain-ring and a 16T fixed gear cog. What would you suggest?

I live in the flattest part of Europe (yeah it's windy). I'm running a 46/17. Sometimes when sprinting I start bouncing on the saddle. When at a stoplight I need 3-4 good strokes before my cadence is ok. Anyways, we can't decide that for you.
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Old 06-13-14, 09:19 AM
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I haven't learned to skip or skid yet, and I might not ever bother. They're not important to me.

I commute to the track on my track bike. I made my front brake (my only brake) quickly detachable so I can race. Brakes are not allowed in track races. It's an hour and 20 minute ride through tons of city traffic and over the Queensborough Bridge to the track, and I'm getting the hang of it. I also understand now why messengers carry their cargo on their backs. The cargo adds to the sprung weight, so you still have the advantages of a light bike. If the cargo were attached to the bike, you'd have a lot of weight hitting the bumps on skinny little tires. Not pleasant.
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Old 06-13-14, 07:23 PM
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This coming July will mark my 2nd year anniversary of riding fixed gear. I ride with front and rear brakes because drivers in my neck of the woods are crazy and I value my life. I do desire to own both FW/geared and fixed bikes though....
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Old 06-14-14, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by 50voltphantom View Post
I'm an ex-BMXer with a severe aversion to derailleurs so it's single-speed freewheel for this guy.
The derailleur is a wonderful invention, but I too must avert my eyes when I see one on an otherwise good-looking bike. Either that or I gawp like a kid at the circus when he spots the bearded lady ("Stop staring, it isn't polite"). At this point I've converted pretty much all my bikes to ss; once I started removing bits, it became addictive.

Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
I find the difference between riding free wheel and riding fixed is the difference between having sex with and without a condom.
I ride fixed and am so much more connected.
I've also read that riding ss freewheel is like sucking on a piece of candy with the wrapper still on.

Although fixed has an allure, I often like to disconnect my brain (as far as safely possible!) from the rote act of cycling, leaving more gray matter free to daydream; in my experience this is ill-advised when freewheeling is off the menu.
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Old 06-14-14, 12:36 PM
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If I had to do a city commute like the op.. I would just get a Raleigh Misceo 4.0 (belt drive and 11s hub) and forget the about it.
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Old 06-14-14, 01:57 PM
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Riding fixed, requires a skillset not required when cycling freewheel single speeding. The very idea of braking without some type of metal-linked braking mechanism just baffles the mind of the conventional cyclist, and most witnessing members of the public. Additionally, the idea of not being able to coast downhill impresses most conventional cyclists as more of a handicap, than anything else.

IMHO, cycling single speed is the most efficient and practical manner in which to cycle, when hills are not a serious challenge. However, just like "correct gearing" and fixed gear cycling, "difficult hills", are all a matter of individual judgment, and are all subject to personal perception, taste, and feelings, too!

Therefore, riding "fixed" as a preference, is simply a matter of choice...

Different strokes for different folks!


I'd hate to have to give up riding fixed, if I had highly developed fixed gear riding skills! Skills that most definitely require time, commitment, and talent.

Last edited by WestPablo; 06-14-14 at 02:03 PM.
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