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Single speed mountain biking

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I happen to have an old beat-up mountain bike frame that I am planning to use scavenged parts for to build a single speed trail bike. I want to do some relatively technical riding on this rig. My question is, have any you any experience setting up a bike like this with regard to gear ratios, what to look out for, etc?? Thanks
post #2 of 7
Off topic tangent:

Today I'm heading through downtown SF on a cable car and I see this guy decending a steep street coming towards us. He gets closer and I immediately notice that he's on a brakeless fixed-gear road bike; IN TRAFFIC! As a car cuts him off, he locks up the pedals and shifts the back wheel to the side to skid to a track stand. He holds it until traffic moves again and then pedals off calmly.

And I thought singletrack was intense.
post #3 of 7
Cactus Head - I've never been on a singlespeed mountain bike because I need the extra gearing to get up hills that would otherwise KILL me, but I've heard that he most popular ration is a 2:1 deal. For example, if your running a 34 tooth ring, then get a 17 tooth rear cog, or you can do 32-16. Some folks like to alter this ratio, depending on where they ride, but usually never more that a +/- 1 amount (ig. 32-17).
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
All of you, thanks for the input. The loop I usually ride requires almost 1:1 gearing on my 24 speed rigs. I might get a series of rear cogs to try out with a 32 on the cranks. It ought to be fun--what the hell, if I'm too high the hike will be just as fun; if I'm too low I'll tune my slow speed handling and balance. Thanks again.
post #5 of 7
KevinH
Those guys are real good at the fixed cog brakeless rigs.
According to a news report about 3 months ago of the messengers in the city there are about 10-15 of them riding those. On top of taking a lot of skill to ride those, there is no market for stolen ones so they get left alone when parked on the street while the messengers make their pickups and deliveries.

P.S. Are you here in the city?
We will have to get together with SkiMinker sometime for a glass of wine or whatever you beverage of choice is.
post #6 of 7
cactus head, you might want to check Sheldon "whatever" Brown's site: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/fixed/index.html

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Sergey ( 2pizza@usa.net )
post #7 of 7
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