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PostPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 7:11 pm 
Pumpy's Bear
Pumpy's Bear
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Joined: Mon Oct 10, 2005 10:03 pm
Posts: 8145
Location: Hereford
Freewheel on the commuting bike gave up the ghost this evening (basically I can now freewheel in both directions) but not a problem as the hub is a flip flop with a fixed sprocket on the other side.

So I whipped the wheel off and turned it round and wobbled off into Friday afternoon/evening traffic for my first real fixed experience. Despite not feeling especially confident the thing that struck me most was how much I freewheel e.g. on first setting off and getting comfortable, to adjust shorts, round corners, waeving through traffic etc. Only forgot to pedal sort of once otherwise no mishap.

But I'm not sold - I didn't feel the 'man and machine in perfect harmony' that the fixed zealots rave on about, apart from the difference stopping and starting it felt pretty much like riding. But will it help me develop supplesse? And will I recognise the supplesse when it comes along? Do I need to persevere and go through some sort of conversion, rather like when first using clipless pedals?

Any thoughts?


Last edited by ededwards on Fri Jul 11, 2008 8:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 7:33 pm 
Dirt Disciple
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Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2007 8:06 pm
Posts: 41
The whole fixed wheel thing is so fashionable it's boll*cks! 6 inch handlebars no equipment and a £600 price tag....

You're avin a larf aintcha!!


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 8:26 pm 
Feature Bike
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 8:13 pm
Posts: 1143
Location: York-ish UK
Respect for the first-time-fix-in-traffic approach.

I'm into the idea of simplicity; love the look of a bike without too many brakes or gears; and would like to be able to cycle backwards and play polo like an old-school hero: so I have been toying with the idea of a fixie that can do modest off roading.

But I just can't get round what I see as the drawbacks of fixed. In no particular order:

when you slow down, your knees have to take a strain that they weren't designed for

if the chain comes off you're funked

if your feet slip off the pedals some part of you is going to get slapped

if you go down a steep hill you have to take your feet off the pedals like a 1940's delivery boy, brake heavilly, or bounce up and down like a pranged prairie dog. ( i know that fixers develop excellent spin, but some hills are too steep for that)


As to the whole fashionable fixie thing,

A: it's not that fashionable anymore, and

B: some of the off the peg offerings are stupidly priced, but at least you can now get hold of a range of v. useful odds and ends which add extra scope to titting around with bikes which we've always done.

I reckon a home-madepub bike with flip flop fixed/free is worth a go, and, as I've finished another glass of prosecco while writing this, I think I need to build one. Damn.

:wink:


Image


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:01 pm 
MacModerator
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Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2006 8:59 pm
Posts: 20770
Location: Sol Kitts
My commuter is fixed and reckon it will improve your cycling but would say more for road riding. I find it helps keep a better tempo and a supplesse of sorts (not sure if I recognise it either) definitely a smoother pedal stroke and can up the power with out much effort. I also find using it during the winter I can get a much better workout for my time, but it won't replace my road bike. How that translates to offroad is up for debate, too much change of pace and jucking about off roading for fixed riding to be of any benefit IMO. Mostly I enjoy it as a change and thats probably the bottom line.



p.s. my fixed is a 2 brake, mudgaurd, standard bar affair not the trendy type.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:02 pm 
MacModerator
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Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2006 8:59 pm
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Location: Sol Kitts
Just realised this is in the classic road forum so disregard the offroad stuff :oops:


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 12:00 am 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2008 8:21 pm
Posts: 38
Location: Southampton
Aah I was just reminiscing about fixed on the 27" wheel thread. Back inthe late 70's early 80's we all used to ride fixed in the winter typically a 67 or 69" gear. What I liked i
was the improvement in twiddling ability and the fantastic braking effect. If you have low ground clearance you could go to 165mm cranks and stick with narrow pedals to aid cornering.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 12:32 pm 
rider | rBoTM Winner
rider | rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 1:42 pm
Posts: 5131
Location: Wakefield, Yorkshire
I haven't ridden fixed for years but when I was a lad it was the normal thing for clubmen to ride through the winter on a gear around 65"-70" with heavy HP tyres, mudguards, dynamo, saddle bag with cape and tools etc. Getting onto the racing bike in spring time was like having a pair of wings!

Seems to be a trend in UK time trialling to get back to fixed but on gears a lot higher than we used to use (generally 82" - 86").

Don't forget Chris Boardman holds the 25 record done on fixed.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 1:36 pm 
The Guv'nor
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Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2005 11:19 pm
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Location: Retrobike HQ
Only ever ridden fixed on the boards. Fancy trying it on the road. As others have said it used to be the done thing for club road riders over the winter.

Bit surprised to find it isn't the in thing now? What is it? 69er fixed?


As for off road. Pshhhhh. Used to ride occasionally with a chap who road a fixie. It was like going out with coco the clown - everytime we hit something a little rocky he'd bash a pedal and fall off. Singlespeed off-road - fine if thats your thing. Fixie - NO.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 2:51 pm 
Lincs AEC
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Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2007 8:34 pm
Posts: 12314
Location: Branston, Lincoln
Ed, fixed is the way forward on the road.

I did loads of time trials on fixed and all of my hill climb events. It is perfect for getting all of your power to the wheels.

Ok, it takes a bit of getting used to, but once your there, no looking back.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 2:51 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Mon May 05, 2008 8:57 am
Posts: 53
YES it is


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