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Fixed-Gear Bikes

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
had a few brewskis with some fellow riders (i flatter myself, i'm a hanger-on) last night at a downtown hangout. all of these folks have more mileage than me and in most cases, much more. racers, and a couple who've done the TdF route (or so they say).

ANYWAY...

we're leaving, everyone going their own ways, when i notice a badass bike that i have to check out. tres schweet and about the lightest bike i've ever lifted with a two-finger curl.

guy says "g'head, take it for a spin," so i do, but it's nearly more spill than spin, as i have some difficulty getting used to the fixed-gear feel. in fact, i don't get the feel for it and decide that tooling around on crowded sidewalks is not a good idea for me, the pedestrians, or the bike.

i'm just glad i had running shoes on rather than cycling, 'cause i'd've dumped had i been clipped in.

i have talked to some messengers who treat their fixed-gear rigs like the finest of race horses; they ooze religion when talking about "the purity." and i can't believe a few of these nuts actually do their jobs on them, blazing through intersections with the occassional climb or descent thrown in. (they add that a fixed-gear is less likely to get stolen. if you've never been on one, give it a go; you'll get the theft-deterent aspect right away.)

intriguing. i may have to hop back on one in a more favorable environment.

anybody out there a believer?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fixed-gear_bicycle
post #2 of 19
- much quieter. I christened it the "Red Ghost" for I could sneak up behind pedestrians and make 'em jump with mere spoken 'onyerlift'

- NO WAY a theft deterrent. Likely they'll take it just for the laced rear hub and throw it into a different frame. Especially with an ENO or other eccentric hub.

- clipped is easier + safer w/o a brake. No way are you going to freespin your legs at 160rpm in sync with the pedals just to get your feet back on.

- a bit passe, like Y2K.

This animation
has me thinking of a 175 or 180 crank BioPace kangaroo bike (left side crank flipped).

All for better skiing, ya know.
post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by comprex
All for better skiing, ya know.
b-i-n-g-o.
post #4 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by comprex
- much quieter. I christened it the "Red Ghost" for I could sneak up behind pedestrians and make 'em jump with mere spoken 'onyerlift'

- NO WAY a theft deterrent. Likely they'll take it just for the laced rear hub and throw it into a different frame. Especially with an ENO or other eccentric hub.

- clipped is easier + safer w/o a brake. No way are you going to freespin your legs at 160rpm in sync with the pedals just to get your feet back on.

- a bit passe, like Y2K.

This animation
has me thinking of a 175 or 180 crank BioPace kangaroo bike (left side crank flipped).

All for better skiing, ya know.
How is he able to pedal backwards, yet gererate forward motion? I'm impressed! Gotta get me one of them fixies.
post #5 of 19
It's all about the gearing.
post #6 of 19

Dust off your left-drive BMX parts, oh puny scoffers.

ACS South Paw











PS be serious: it's all about gravity
post #7 of 19
I've been wanting to build up my old road bike frame into a single-speed using the White Industries off-center rear hub. I'd probably go single-speed first though because I live atop a big hill -- I leave my driveway, turn left, and the first mile goes by in under 2 minutes. Then I start pedalling. : As ryan discovered, I'd kill myself with a fixed gear with my current pedalling habits!

The last mile of my rides -- coming back up the hill -- takes somewhat longer then the first mile . It gets the early-season legs in form fast! But part of my delay in building up my single-speed / fixed-gear is that I'm not really sure I want to do that climb without shifting.

One of these days...
post #8 of 19
One advantage of fixed is that you are very aware of maintaining momentum when faced with a climb. On shorter (less than a mile) 3-5% grade climbs this usually means that my finish times have been shorter than with geared bikes because I didn't allow myself to slack off first in anticipation.


One disadvantage of fixed is that you can't brace a knee against the TT or have a foot down on the outside of the turn. Not the same stability or pedal clearance game anymore.
post #9 of 19
Thread Starter 

now kids, coasting is bad, mmkay.

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/fixed.html

be sure to check the "severed fingers" chapter.
post #10 of 19

That pic doesn't show the firehose effect.

It's healed up nicely tho. Even the prints grew back.

Show & tell next mammoth trip if you like.
post #11 of 19
Thread Starter 

firehose effect

Beevis and Butthead in Wood Shop

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZngj...related&search=
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by comprex View Post
One disadvantage of fixed is that you can't brace a knee against the TT or have a foot down on the outside of the turn. Not the same stability or pedal clearance game anymore.
You know, something I never thought about was pedal clearance. I've ridden with some guys who ride fixies, and never though about the fact that you can't keep the inside dedal up during cornering or when going closely past a cut tree trunk or rock. I could see hitting a rock, tree or ground with a pedal as a very common occurance. I could also see stream crossings being more difficult. Hell, everything would be more difficult. I just never thought of some of this before. It would take some serious adjustment. How on earth would you bunny-hop something at speed?????? Getting clipped in would be a pita also.
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnH View Post
How on earth would you bunny-hop something at speed??????
See "skip stop" in the sheldon link.

Quote:
Originally Posted by View Post
Getting clipped in would be a pita also.
Not that bad.
+easier trackstands
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnH View Post
How on earth would you bunny-hop something at speed??????
I have heard that the ability to bunny-hop on a fixie and stick the landing is a sure sign of Zen Mastery of a bicycle. Think about it -- if you stop pedalling while airborne, the rear wheel is going to stop. Landing with a non-rotating wheel sounds pretty iffy to me, so you're not only stuck with the problem of pedalling through take-off, you have to keep pedalling through the air-borne phase as well.

I've always agreed with the "Zen Master" thing...
post #15 of 19
I saw someone on a bike yesterday that I think was a ss. However, I noticed the strangest things going on with the cranks. It appeared that they could release and spin free. I noticed because the rider was able to coast with both of his feet still clipped in in the Six O'clock position.

Anyone have the slightest idea what he was riding?
post #16 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinF View Post
I have heard that the ability to bunny-hop on a fixie and stick the landing is a sure sign of Zen Mastery of a bicycle. Think about it -- if you stop pedalling while airborne, the rear wheel is going to stop. Landing with a non-rotating wheel sounds pretty iffy to me, so you're not only stuck with the problem of pedalling through take-off, you have to keep pedalling through the air-borne phase as well
and here i am just trying to keep my trackstand until the light turns green.
post #17 of 19

Ez

Quote:
Originally Posted by icanseeformiles(andmiles) View Post
I saw someone on a bike yesterday that I think was a ss. However, I noticed the strangest things going on with the cranks. It appeared that they could release and spin free. I noticed because the rider was able to coast with both of his feet still clipped in in the Six O'clock position.

Anyone have the slightest idea what he was riding?
http://www.powercranks.com/
post #18 of 19
I have a SS conversion of my old steal road frame and I have got no cojones for a fixie!
post #19 of 19
Mountains out of molehills, guys.

Except maybe, just maybe, for the guys with handleashes, there is not a single inline skater that can friction stop quicker than a skip-stopped fixie.
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