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  1. #201
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    had to make the 200th post I SS mostly because of no more dropped chains when I go DJing. and also, no more ripped off RD's and no more niose !
    Ibex bikes

    2007 Ibex Trophy SS
    2006 Jamis Komodo 3.0
    2006 Ibex Zone FR-1
    2004 Special-Ed P.2 A.1

  2. #202
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    I'm entertaining the idea of a SS 29er for the conditioning aspect and for family singletrack excursions. If I get a ss, we will all be walking.
    SS is also the cheapest way for me to get a 29er, which I've been dying to try.

  3. #203
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    Quote Originally Posted by iviguy
    I don't get it. With different cogs and gear ratios it seems like having a 21, 24, or 27 speed would be superior to a singlespeed. So what is the benefit? Is it only weight? I have a bike I could convert but I am having trouble justifying it.
    I am still trying to figure that out myself.....besides weight I can see none.
    Last edited by brianthebiker; 01-17-2006 at 12:05 PM.

  4. #204
    your ankles are fat
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianthebiker
    I am still trying to figure that out myself.....besides weight I can see none.
    it's simple, quiet, light, fast, makes you a better rider--if you race(and are competitive) against geared bikers

    Singlespeeding isn't Amway, no one's telling you to do it, or "get it"...riding is something we all do it for different reasons, geared, not, rigid, full-squish...

  5. #205
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    Flooooooooowwwwwwwww!!

    I haven't read this entire thread, so forgive me if this has been said before: It's a flow thing! I was riding a fairly brutal trail 2 years ago when I picked up a stick on my VT2 and tore off my derailleur... 3 miles into a 12 mile loop I wasn't about to walk back, so I took some links out of my chain and set up a 16x32 and kept on riding. 9 miles later I was converted! The flow was amazing, and all the reasons I love to ride (mainly that zen feeling of forgetting everything except for what is in fronto of you) was magnified by not having the gears to worry about.

    So the following year I spent a bit (not a lot) and set up my old Diamondback Apex as a 16x32 singlespeed. Within a few weeks I was dropping folks - all because of the flow. Coming up on a hill? Your two options are to keep momentum or to walk it. Rock gardens are easier to clean... there's no chain-suck, no chain-flop... it's easier to feel the bike as an extension of your body. My friends riding 21-speeds just don't ride that way - and given the option of using an easier gear on a long, nasty climb, it's human nature to do so.

    All that said, I still love my dualie!! I just ride it different - more like the singlespeed, actually - as in I don't change gears unless it's vital to get through a section. So please don't knock it until you've tried it. I was always skeptical as well! It seems obvious from these posts that the singlespeed community is so tight because of all the flack they get...

    Didn't Dr. Bronner say "One on one! One on one or NONE!!!!" ....or something like that...?

  6. #206
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    My reasons...

    I recently decided to try a 26 " SS, and so far, it has been worth it.

    The Monocog doesn't travel as fast as my geared bike, but I enjoy the challenge of riding a minimalist bike for a change. Significantly reduced maintenance helps with the bottom line, which is nice. My geared bike is thief bait, so it cannot be used as a commuter in good conscience, but the SS can be locked just about anywhere without a second thought. The comparative lack of drivetrain noise vs. any geared bike that I have tried is nice too. The SS brings back memories me of my BMX days long ago and makes me smile whenever I ride it.

    These reasons make SS worthwhile to me, YMMV.

  7. #207
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hollywood

    you know its coming. That's exactly the same process that I went through.

    oops, almost forgot Step 4:

    neglect/sell your current ride
    Yeah... the dualie sat in the shed a lot since I tricked out my ss last year! That tends to happen as you realize how ridiculous most of this technology is for xc riding. Regarding the talk about front sus vs. rigid - some nice 2.3 tires will cushion the blow pretty well. One thing I'm not sure that's been mentioned is tire pressure... without using the weenie gears you'll find that the rear tire stays glued to ground even on the most gruelling climbs. Oh! And youre upper-body will get worked like never before. Oh hell.... SINGLESPEEDS ROCK!

  8. #208
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    my reason

    I should say: Al is de fiets nog zo snel, de conditie achterhaalt hem wel!
    Translation: The bike can be very fast, but the rider has to do it!

    And i like to prove this to my geared friends by doing it all with one gear!

  9. #209
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    I'm definitely an infrequent visitor to SS land, but here are the benefits as I see them.

    ----It can be an incredibly quiet, soothing ride. You don't realize how loud the geared bike can be until you try an SS.

    ----It's a different kind of focus. Without more gears to blast me through a descent, I found I would just relax and focus on carving and cornering, and maintaining momentum going back into climbs. Climbing even benign hills can become a chore, reacquanting you with your heart and the strength in your legs.

    ----Think of it as just another way to make the trails you ride all the time feel new again. Months ago when I was really giving this a shot, the "easy" ride in town had proven itself not so easy on a 32x18 combo. And that's pretty weak for some of the purists out here.

    Like others have said here, I'm sure, it's just another diversion, no more ridiculous than devoting your free time to riding a bike in the woods in the first place.

  10. #210
    meh... whatever
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianthebiker
    I am still trying to figure that out myself.....besides weight I can see none.
    Weight isn't what it's all about... but simplicity and personal satisfaction is.

    One of my Cro-Mo Redline SS bikes (and my first SS) is 27 lbs. but on it I smoke the people on their ultra light $4000 squishy geared bikes. They kid me about "drilling holes in my bike to lower the weight" but they can't catch me on the trail. In Moab (and elsewhere) I descend things and ride lines that most people avoid; and made all but 2 climbs at Slick Rock. When I race I turn lap times comparable to the expert class leaders. That's all very satisfying because it's all me. No compensation with technology for lack of ability.

    A full rigid single speed bike will make you a faster, smoother, and much stronger rider. Being rigid DEMANDS that you actually have technical skills rather than just slop over things. One gear means your stroke and climbing technique must be superb. You're either good or you're hike-a-biking.

    The bottom line of singlespeeding is simplicity with no excuses.

    Oh yeah, and it's fun to trash talk squishy gearies!
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

  11. #211
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    Quote Originally Posted by kawboy8
    Single speeds are dumb. I had a single speed when I was 4. Someone said, "because their the new thing...mainstream". How dumb. Because everyone else is doing it...lets all run out and buy a bike that technology has left behind.
    I'm faster on my FS SS through the local trails than I ever was on any 21/24/27 speed gearie. Most of the "hardcore" MTBers I've run into with the newest $5k XC rigs will say something when I pass them with my SS. I attribute it to the fact I no longer have to subconciously tell myself when to shift. It frees up that much more of your mind to pick the best lines. Besides, there's nothing like stomping up a huge hill with a 2:1 while passing all the folks who picked the granny... puts a big smile on my face.

  12. #212
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    get over it.....

    Yes I agree this question has been asked alot but so what??? theres new people coming on here all the time wanting to know no big deal I bet theres alot of qusetions thats been asked before over & over... As for me I LOVE my Redline Mono Cog SS its light will be light alot cheaper to fix & maintain Plus starting out I'll be a better rider then the guy buying a $4,000 FS whos never rode before if I stay at it besides hes just a question remember to breath!

  13. #213
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    Why SS??

    So I can be out there doing it and not on this board trying to sell others on the idea...SSimple enough.
    Black Sheep...where it'ss at!!
    "I'm not known for my patience. Patience is a polite quality and often appropriate, but it rarely gets things done. Impatience, however, is the hunger for results and intolerance for excuses and delays." LA

  14. #214
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    Jeez... I'm posting out of pure frustration. Is kawboy8 one of those folks that thing 'mountainbikes' are really dirt bikes? Looks like it from the avatar.

    This is probably going to open up a whole new can o' worms, but why are folks so defensive about this... even going to the point of posting on ss forums with strong opinions when they've never tried it?? I get the same crap from some yabbos when they find out I'm vegetarian and try to convince me how I need to eat meat to build muscle. Whatever. Why do they care? Live your life dude!

    Yes - you don't need a bike with 7 inches of travel that costs $4k to ride most trails, and ss riders prove that every day, even dropping a lot of folks on the way. Deal with it. Or better yet, next time you see a singlespeeder on your local trail try and drop their ass and show them what all your gears are for. That'll show 'em.

  15. #215
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    Yes, you are correct sir!!

    [QUOTE=superfastaction]Jeez... I'm posting out of pure frustration. Is kawboy8 one of those folks that thing 'mountainbikes' are really dirt bikes? Looks like it from the avatar. QUOTE]

    Kawgirl8 is a poser who likes to troll. Check the women's lounge, these SS guys will eat him alive, but oh does he love to make prey on the woman's lounge. You know superfastaction, please ignore my comments, cawgirl8 is where he is needed...in the women's lounge pouting about technology...Poor lil' guy!! Maybe one day he'll realize the technology, sell the bike and ride that stupid motor bike he has as an avatar on a MTB forum!! Women I have offended, please don't be offended as you are all soooo much tuffer than kawgirl8.
    Black Sheep...where it'ss at!!
    "I'm not known for my patience. Patience is a polite quality and often appropriate, but it rarely gets things done. Impatience, however, is the hunger for results and intolerance for excuses and delays." LA

  16. #216
    Daniel the Dog
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    Very interesting...

    Quote Originally Posted by superfastaction
    I haven't read this entire thread, so forgive me if this has been said before: It's a flow thing! I was riding a fairly brutal trail 2 years ago when I picked up a stick on my VT2 and tore off my derailleur... 3 miles into a 12 mile loop I wasn't about to walk back, so I took some links out of my chain and set up a 16x32 and kept on riding. 9 miles later I was converted! The flow was amazing, and all the reasons I love to ride (mainly that zen feeling of forgetting everything except for what is in fronto of you) was magnified by not having the gears to worry about.

    So the following year I spent a bit (not a lot) and set up my old Diamondback Apex as a 16x32 singlespeed. Within a few weeks I was dropping folks - all because of the flow. Coming up on a hill? Your two options are to keep momentum or to walk it. Rock gardens are easier to clean... there's no chain-suck, no chain-flop... it's easier to feel the bike as an extension of your body. My friends riding 21-speeds just don't ride that way - and given the option of using an easier gear on a long, nasty climb, it's human nature to do so.

    All that said, I still love my dualie!! I just ride it different - more like the singlespeed, actually - as in I don't change gears unless it's vital to get through a section. So please don't knock it until you've tried it. I was always skeptical as well! It seems obvious from these posts that the singlespeed community is so tight because of all the flack they get...

    Didn't Dr. Bronner say "One on one! One on one or NONE!!!!" ....or something like that...?
    On steep, long (over 5 mile climbs) isn't the SS uncomfortable? I found it to be very hard. Do you get used to it?

    Jaybo

  17. #217
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    Well... five mile climbs can kick yer ass on any bike. Depending on your riding you would want to choose different gear ratios. My ss is a 32:16, which is great for most of our riding in the midwest ( I WISH we had more hills!) but swapping the back freewheel for an 18 tooth gear would definitely be easier on the climbs. A few manufacturers make hubs that will allow you to but a gear on either side and flip your wheel depending on the ride.

    Another point: after riding 3 seasons in BC I had sworn off clipless pedals for the quick-bail attribute of platforms, but being clipped in really helps the climbs when you only have one gear. And yes.. it gets easier!!

  18. #218
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaybo
    On steep, long (over 5 mile climbs) isn't the SS uncomfortable? I found it to be very hard. Do you get used to it?

    Jaybo
    There are several tough climbs around where we ride, and I am running 33:19. One of the gys I ride with runs 32:20. He used to run 40:23. The climbs are not easy, but they are not easy on geared bikes either. I like the standing and mashing approach to the climb. Try swapping your gearing if the ride is too hard.

  19. #219
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    You gotta have more than 1 speed for mtn. biking. How do you trek up a steep hill? Or any climbing for that matter?A mountain bike is supposed to be a "go anywhere bike". Sounds like you have to stay to the pavement with a 1 speed.

  20. #220
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    Semi-single?

    Hey, I too was thinking of building up a single speed, but the really tough climbs seem like they'd be pretty much impossible in a gearing where you could go relatively fast on easy stuff. My question is, would there be any reason I couldn't build up a bike with two gears? Basically, keep the front shifter working two gears, and keep the back in one gear? I guess that wouldn't be pure singlespeeding, but you could get rid of your rear shifter parts, and wouldn't have nearly as much noise or ghost shifting. Anyway, maybe you guys have some thoughts on this.

  21. #221
    Nat
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    Quote Originally Posted by jscook55
    Hey, I too was thinking of building up a single speed, but the really tough climbs seem like they'd be pretty much impossible in a gearing where you could go relatively fast on easy stuff. My question is, would there be any reason I couldn't build up a bike with two gears? Basically, keep the front shifter working two gears, and keep the back in one gear? I guess that wouldn't be pure singlespeeding, but you could get rid of your rear shifter parts, and wouldn't have nearly as much noise or ghost shifting. Anyway, maybe you guys have some thoughts on this.
    You could make a two-speed with two front rings, but you'll need something to take up chain slack (i.e., a rear derailleur). You still have chain slap noise with this method, but it works well. If you need to drop to the lower gear, you can even do so on-the-fly by nudging the chain over onto the small cog with your heel. I no longer have any good close-ups but I pulled whichever pics I could find of this setup (green bike).

    You could also make a two-speed by having two parallel gears with the same total number of teeth on the inside lane as on the outside lane (red bike). I did this one with 32/22 low gear and 36/18 high gear. Note that both add up to 54 teeth. This setup gets rid of all shifting appliances but you have to drop the wheel out of the frame and shift by hand.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Nat; 03-06-2006 at 09:33 AM.

  22. #222
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    I ride SS because...

    I hate to adjust derailleurs, and straighten derailleur hangers...
    I am too lazy too shift, but not too lazy to get up and mash....
    I like 3 speeds - standing, sitting, and walking (not to pround to walk if it's too steep)...
    It's sometimes fun for your gearie friends to say, Holy crap. you did that on a SS bike?

    Actually, I built my first SS a year ago to get back in shape to pedal my HUGE squishy bike, and it quickly became an obsession. My squishy is mostly retired and my fetish takes out the riding crop and flogs the other when we get back from riding, the noises from the garage are spooky.

    Singlespeeding is amazing, no other way to describe it, except maybe like catching a beating a marathon and eating a hot fudge sundae at the same time.
    luck favors the prepared.

  23. #223
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    i'm starting to think we're close.

    when the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse ride.....i know what i'm gonna ride.

  24. #224
    inner peace to make peace
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    OK, i want a single speed: go fixed or freewheel that is the question

    to go fixed or freewheel, that is the question...
    Last edited by TrailNut; 03-11-2006 at 01:54 AM.
    “Everyday is a good day,” from the Blue Cliff Records, Yun-men (864-949 AD).

  25. #225
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    Quote Originally Posted by iviguy
    I have to say, I am very interested but I just got through spending my budget building out my first dual suspension bike. I kept my old bike and was going to retire it to my wife. If I could convince her that she would like a ss better, then that would be my ticket. It may be an option in the future as well.

    And FYI, so far, I liked your explanation best... I can see how strategizing my pedal strokes could be very fun to me.

    I build my first ss using a frame I bought off ebay for 10bucks and spare parts I had lying around. It was a great way to see if I liked it, and it only took a few minutes on a bike that wasn't even working well to fall in love with the simplicity. I rode that for a season and just built a rigid 1x1.

    If you have been riding for a long time and gone through all the tech changes in recent years it is nice to get back to basics, just pedaling and steering.

    Now my MTB herd consists of a rigid 1x1 and a specialized bighit, the 1x1 will see at least 80% of my off road riding time.

  26. #226
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    ... and if we just ...

    Quote Originally Posted by kawboy8
    Single speeds are dumb. I had a single speed when I was 4. Someone said, "because their the new thing...mainstream". How dumb. Because everyone else is doing it...lets all run out and buy a bike that technology has left behind.
    Single speed is dumb only to those who don't want to ride better or get stronger. I built mine and use it as a training tool to teach me how to flow the trail and consintrate on my riding technique. When you ride a ss you only have to worry about how good your technique is. No shifting, sandbagging, or slamming down only to put the brakes on. You learn to us the energy you save flowing down the hill to carry you up the other side. I only stand when I absolutely have to and never for more than the last 100 yards. This forces me to work harder and be more conservative. Once I take this knowledge and combine it with my turner 5 spot with all the bells and whistles I can ride people who are 20-30 years younger than me into the ground and often do. I may be an old coot but I ride with all the 20 year olds and they don't wait for me as much as I wait for them. It also allows me to have a fun ride with my wife, ladies, kids and lesser riders while continuing to get a work out. try it you will be surprised.

  27. #227
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    fix-ed speed or coast (freewheel)

    Quote Originally Posted by tomsharo
    Single speed is dumb only to those who don't want to ride better or get stronger. I built mine and use it as a training tool to teach me how to flow the trail and consintrate on my riding technique. When you ride a ss you only have to worry about how good your technique is. No shifting, sandbagging, or slamming down only to put the brakes on. You learn to us the energy you save flowing down the hill to carry you up the other side. I only stand when I absolutely have to and never for more than the last 100 yards. This forces me to work harder and be more conservative. Once I take this knowledge and combine it with my turner 5 spot with all the bells and whistles I can ride people who are 20-30 years younger than me into the ground and often do. I may be an old coot but I ride with all the 20 year olds and they don't wait for me as much as I wait for them. It also allows me to have a fun ride with my wife, ladies, kids and lesser riders while continuing to get a work out. try it you will be surprised.

    Ok, so SS's cool. now , to decide on fix-ed speed or coast (freewheel)?
    “Everyday is a good day,” from the Blue Cliff Records, Yun-men (864-949 AD).

  28. #228
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    I started out on a SS in the 80's- it was called BMX back then. In the mountains and on the hills I wished and hoped (but pedaled anyway) for easier gears.
    Later on I got more gears, then front suspension came, then rear suspension! It has all been fun.
    Just ride to ride. People trying to be superior to one another (whether its SSing or turning Iraqis to Democracy) is all that's wrong with the world. Try just being happy with who you are. GOSH!!!

    Oh yeah, and you can convert your old Rigid MTB to SS for about $50 so just try it and see... You might like it, you might not.

  29. #229
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    Back to the original question of Why? For me it had nothing to do with flow, or zen or anything of the sort. Back in 92, I was an overeducated, underpaid bike shop employee and, despite riding often, alwys found myself getting trounced by my friends on the rides. Granted I have a healthy beer habit, but so do my firends.
    The manager at the shop convinced me that the one speed category at the stumpjumper race in Angwin would be fun so I entered. My friends' reactions were priceless. I was a lunatic, stupid, and a host of other things. Finally, if I couldn't be faster, I could at least be dumber than them. I lined up in the category with about a dozen or so people including most of the toothless gang from Yreka and went about thrashing myself for a few hours. I was likely last place in the category (something I subsequently became very good at), but one woman I passed in a technical section called me her hero. Hook set.
    I next did the humbug in '93 the beginners category and placed second. I got $75 for that ride. This was starting to look like fun.
    Mike set up the Crusty Cup for the following year with the promise of free beer to all finishers (finally, a goal and a prize I could really get psched for). As I pulled into the lot at Boggs for the first race, two other ss guys, Ezra and Eric, pulled up along side. The first words out of Eric's mouth were "like to climb stairs?" (I run a 34:22). With that, a geared friend of mine warned me that I had enterd a strange cult. I met Mike at the line and asked about the beer. He hadn't bought it yet, but promised to have some by the time I finished. He did and did for every other race that year.
    For about five years, a group of us met 10 - 12 times a year to race and have fun all over CA and the surrounding states. Most of my friends either converted or dabbled in SS from that point on.
    That group of SS people are still amongst my closest friends even though we get together less and less frequently. The times we shared and the simple joy of people, bike and trail are why I remain a one speeder at heart today even though my old steed is the least ridden bike in the stable.

  30. #230
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    Smile Why I SS?

    A few reasons:
    - Simplicity... It's a liberating feeling to ride a simple machine. (My other bike is a higher-end Jekyll with lots of moving parts, pivots, hydraulics, squeaks, and things to worry about)
    - Efficiency... It's not easy pushing a SS uphill, and I still struggle with 16-32 gearing, but for every bit of effort you put in, you feel like you get back more in terms of forward motion. With gears and suspension, I often find the extra chain length and bob actually saps my energy.
    - The "Feel" ... It's not for everyone, but I personally love the feel of my SS, especially on fast singletrack... it feels like a race car.

    Bottom Line: I LOVE TO RIDE... I savor the feel my full-suspension after several days of SS, and getting back on the SS always feels liberating. I love switching between my rides.

    Peace,
    MBB

  31. #231
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    if you race compare your times with the single speeders. the times are the same or even faster.

  32. #232
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    xc racing: single speed's faster?

    Quote Originally Posted by vzman
    if you race compare your times with the single speeders. the times are the same or even faster.
    really?! xc racing: single speed's faster?
    “Everyday is a good day,” from the Blue Cliff Records, Yun-men (864-949 AD).

  33. #233
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    why not

    Why not?? I dunno what makes a SS'er a SS'er. Who knows, it was like the epic rides weren't hard enough on my geared bikes. The biggest up for me was a recent trip abroad and returning home with all arms, legs, appendages, mind, etc. I started having fun riding my bike again. I am not sure what started my journey in mt. biking and I had had some fun, but I had lost it in the racing and training. I did well but it became a job. A third job. I returned home, decided I was just gonna have fun riding again and screw the training and stuff.

    First off you ain't borderline (pick appropriate mental disorder) SS'in ain't for you. Sorry ...it is true. If you cannot not handle the pain, you should forget it.

    I just ride. I love it. It makes me who I am.

    ridewiththegirls........... I think I am in love or something similar to that. DOH!!!!
    Last edited by IBBW; 04-28-2006 at 06:01 PM.
    what don't kill ya, make ya more strong.

  34. #234
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    Why do I ride a singlespeed? There's only ONE answer

    There is nothing better than catching a gearhead on a long climb and dropping him after he realizes that I'm on my totally rigid, Kelly singlespeed 29er.

  35. #235
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1fgmtnbyker
    There is nothing better than catching a gearhead on a long climb and dropping him after he realizes that I'm on my totally rigid, Kelly singlespeed 29er.
    I just had a single29 ride... on the monocog29. It was my first one on a "crowded" trail with the SS. I got passed by a few geared bikes on the road climb. It is a steep road to say the least. I look up while mashing sometimes, and lose all will to live let alone pedal...

    I then got to the less steep, rocky climbing. I just can't believe it. That freakin' bike HAMMERS over rocks. Fully rigid. I quickly caught up to a geared bike. FLASH! I think he got frightened when he heard me coming. He whipped to the side, and I mashed past whipping the front end around in a torrent of a line. It loves it.

    I got nervous as the trail turned down. If I was on that geared, squish bike behind me, I would catch me as quickly as I caught it the first time... What did that say? Ohh well, you get it I think.

    I stopped at the bottom of the first decent. I pulled a valve cap off the front tire and let some air out.... This is how much:

    PSSSSSSSSST......PSSSST.

    The geared squish bomb passed by, and I took my time. The next section was flat with rocky sections. I am usually in top gear and spinning. I wondered if I could catch him again. I spun and tucked, spun and tucked. The Redline really goes where you want it. I can quite literally throw the front end where I want with a quick whip. I could see that I was gaining on the geared rider. I guess his name wasn't "Specialized" like his bike said... I passed him on the left in the rocks. I stabbed a few more solid lines, and gave a runner wearing an IPOD a shout.... "ON YOUR LEFT". She freaked out like they always do. I wear my IPOD all the time. Sometimes I am that idiot. I have no reservations about scaring the freak out of them if they don't bother to pay attention while using the trail. There is no other worthy way.

    The singletrack turns to a rocky road mess. I was going pretty quickly. The little Vee-brakes were not having a good time and they were screaming about it. I used to hate that sound. For some odd reason now it makes me smile a bit.

    I saw two more geared squish bikes ahead and before I had picked a line around them and the larger rocks, I was pounding through between them over rocks I would not have rode 1 minute before. All I heard was: "You gotta be kiddin' me"! I almost fell off the bike it was so funny sounding.

    I took the hard left up the hill, and traversed to the last butter track. It had me smiling the entire way. 40mph down the road and back to town, and I was slow-stroking home.

    I think I am going to like this....


  36. #236
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    Why Single Speed? I believe that was the question. Why do we ride at all. I own 6 Mountain bikes 2 of them are SS, a full on DH (GT DHi), Santa Cruz Bullit, P2, and a Fetish Hardtail. When I'm not Downhilling you can catch me on one of my SS. Back to the question, I SS because it is pure. I have been SSing for about 4 years now and try to hook everyone I know or ride with into it. Funny thing is when you SS with geared bikes most are saying things like "I don't know how you do it", "I like my gears", "looks like torcher" ect..... Then you get them out on a SS and they are hooked and soon they have one and they are riding it and all the other bikes are gathing dust. I think there are as many reason to SS as there are people riding them. But I promise you that once you give it a chance you will be hook too. So have fun, ride alot and don't worry what everyone else is doing. Do what's best for you. GO SSing.

  37. #237
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    Single speed

    That's right do your own thing. single speeding rules

  38. #238
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    Quote Originally Posted by KleinKrazy
    Besides, there's nothing like stomping up a huge hill with a 2:1 while passing all the folks who picked the granny... puts a big smile on my face.
    And what about those who dont pick the granny, and are in a better more efficient gear than you? They match you up the hill, then leave you in the dust on the straight because you don't have the gearing.

    Don't get me wrong, I'd love to own a single speed. Get stronger, no gears, less wieght, learning the track better. But just because you switch to a single speed, doesn't meen you'll be faster than those with gears.

  39. #239
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    It wasn't really about being faster or anything for me. I like the simplicity of it. It frees up a little more of your mind so that you can focus a little more on everything else. Not only that but it's nice not having my derailleur reload the chain onto the correct gear when I'm doing any urban assault. It also pushes me. I live on a hill, and I used to make use of every gear to get myself to the top with the least amount of energy using the gears. Now I don't think about shifting for efficiency, I just go and don't stop. It simply brings more enjoyment and satisfaction to the 'sport'.

  40. #240
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    holy sh*t I finally found a SS forum! For the longest time i though me and 3 other people in my home town wausau were the only people to ride SS. this is my first post here, From what it seems most of you guys ride your SS bikes xc style, I my self prefer to ride mine however i want whether it be freeride/dj/singletrack/xc/street as long as it involves riding my SS bike I'll ride it.

    Now to answer the question of why?, I ride single speed becasue of how care free it is, all you have to do on a ss is keep an eye out for a good line, and pedal like a madman, and i absolutly love it when i tear past a guy with gears on a trail with my ss their reactions are worth it every time. plus the ladies like the look of a freeride ss, "it looks tough"-random quote from a ladie friend, also i ride a ss becasue it's alot less to break.
    ss, the purest form of mountain bikeing??
    Last edited by guardman519; 07-23-2006 at 10:11 AM.

  41. #241
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    I SS because I'm lazy

    Just get on and go! Everything you add to you life requires some level of maintenance and I suck at bike maintenance. One less thing to have to maintain in a life full of demands. Sure it kicks my butt, but I focus on the challenge and not the gears..........

  42. #242
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    It almost seems like the reason I got a singlespeed is because I am lazy. I always got pissed off when my chain popped off from the derailer. I was too lazy to fix them properly or maybe I always just had cheap components.

    Either way, I went into a bike shop over two years ago and asked for a bike without gears because I was sick of them. They turned me away and tried to sell me some bikes with internal hub derailers saying that I wouldn't be able to do the hills. I guess I believed them and just gave up.

    Then two years later without even riding I had another itch and found that there were a lot of bikes being made specifically for single speed. I went down to the same bike shop and told them what I wanted and it was mine within a week. I am now currently just riding a stock redline monocog. I have been absolutly loving it for the past few months.

  43. #243
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    How Much Does it cost to got SS, How Do I do it

  44. #244
    i don't give a shift
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    I ride a single because gears confused the crap out of me. I never knew if I should shift down a few cogs or move the chain up a chainring. I'd ride along and ask myself if I should twist my left Gripshift or the one on the right. I thought about this all the time; constantly, even off the bike. I went to my bike dealer daily and asked for his opinion about the best gear for all the climbs in my area. After a few weeks I often found his shop closed whenever I showed up. All I could think about was gear shifting, shifting down, shifting up, using the front or the rear, when to shift and how many gears to shift at once. It was all so complicated - I lost my job because of it. I went to my shrink who talked a whole lot about insecurity, but he knew absolutely nothing about bicycles. I was almost at the point of giving up cycling, when I decided to write to "Dear Abby". She replied that if gears were causing all the trouble in my life why not ride without them. Hey, I ride singlespeed and have a new job. I run a 36x18 and wonder if a 34x18 would be better for me, I really wonder!

  45. #245
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    I got to do a little road testing on my SS project bike tonight and although a knee injury is keeping me from being able to stand on the pedals and hammer things I had no problem spinning the bike up to nearly 30 mph... it's a vintage road bike that's running 42:14 gearing.

    It was so good I had to smoke a cigarette afterwards.

    The single speed mountain bike will be my next project.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  46. #246
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    I can relate to most of what collideous says!

    Gears can be confusing, they work for 5 minutes then ruin your ride!

    You catch your £100 rear mech on something and it ruins your week!

    This happens 3 times in a year, and you convert to SS!

    I've never really looked back, my riding has changed, I think I've even changed too. More laid back, riding for myself, not trying to break myself when attempting a stunt I know I can't pull off.

    I have played with a 1 x 9 setup, same old problems with our without a front mech, plus you now have to worry about keeping your chain on the front!

    I'm toying with the idea of putting some gears on my Implant and getting a SS specific 29er frame, but I know I'll stop riding the Implant because the gears will put me off.

    I've toyed with the idea of Rohloff too, I think if I was going to get a geared bike I'd save up and get myself a Speedhub.

    But I know it all boils down to the fact that I'd rather take a SSer out than anything. I've sold 3 other bikes down to the fact my SS is so enjoyable, all full suspension, all Intense and all really nice, but I don't even miss two of them!

    SS is simple and fun, concentrate on riding better, harder and faster. You know what it's going to feel like when you start to pedal and you just shoot forward. No gears to loose your momentum, no skipping, no missed gears, off you go, have fun!


  47. #247
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    bought a kona unit 2 year back after stopping cycling for more than 10 years.
    Last week it was my first time going off road with a 9 speed KHS which I use only for road.....look what happened?? As for my 2 year old kona unit...never had any servicing required for the past 2 years except punctures.

  48. #248
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    I have a red line mono cog and really love it , however my local riding is filled with heavy duty climbing , both steep and long ! even though I love this ride, I have developed some knee problems as a result of mashing on my single speed. all I can say is , single speeds and lots of climbing could result in some sore knees.

    I've since worked out the knee pain problem by switching from 175 MM two 170 MM cranks and bumping up from a 32T two a 34 T rear cog.

    I was having hella fun while I it lasted.

  49. #249
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    I like it because it's more about the riding than the bike. When I got my new MTB bike I realised I was only ever riding in 2 gears anyway and my old one had a busted deraillier which I never got fixed.
    The bike weighs less, is easier to maintain, keeps me fitter and subsequently, I hardly ever ride the geared road bike nowadays.
    And, Travis Brown won on a SS against geared racers in comps, and a guy named Dan Hale here in Australia did the same! It's not the bike, it's the bike and the rider.

  50. #250
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    SS Barracuda

    Giving new life to a Barracuda A2M built in 93 by Frank down the street from Barracuda. Horizontal track dropouts were just fitted and I am in the process of collecting parts. I was wondering if anyone knows the proper seatpost size for this bike. The frame is dihedral steel tubing. The stem that was in there is not much of a clue, since it fit tight, really tight that is. I recall questioning the shop owners need to use persuation to get the post in The post I removed is 26.6 but i am thinking 26.4 is correct. Calipers in the tube are in between. I'd like to order a post before the bike returns from the painter. And this all got started because I was to cheap to buy a new suspension fork

  51. #251
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    I just went on my first SS ride yesterday. I did it simply by riding my old Sugar around in one gear (32X30) the whole time. I enjoyed it, if for no other reason than it's a new challenge, and something different. It also helps match your speeds when you ride with slower people. For what its worth, I found the biggest chalenge to be not the climbs, but the technical rock gardens and such. it's hard to pick your way through with no granny. I think I'll make the switch. Who knows, maybe it will make me a better rider.

    I'd recommend doing what I did- riding around in one gear for a few rides before you put the time and money into converting. Kind of like when people are contemplating a sex change-they make them live the life for a year before taking that final irreversable step.

  52. #252
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    I guess my answer to you is that I had the same questions and skeptical view as you. If you had told me 3 months ago that today I'd be riding a SS Rigid Frame and loving it, I'd have asked you to hook me up with some of what you were smoking, because is musta been some good stuff!

    I have a Turner Flux and an Ellsworth Truth that are both going on EBay and I will be riding my SS exclusively from now on. These are high end big $$ bikes and I don't want anything to do with them anymore!

    Regarding making climbs, I ride Avalon in Baltimore, MD. Very nice trail network with plenty of hills, single track, some rocky stuff, streams, etc. On my FS Gear Bikes, I would climb some of the stuff in small front ring and 2nd gear and sometimes 1st, so you know what kind of hills I'm talking about. But now, I'm hitting the hills hard and grinding it out and making more and more each ride. I've only ridden my SS around 10 times, and I literally make at least one more section that I had to walk previously every time out. (Yes, I walked ALOT the first couple of rides!) I've got buddies that can make virtually all of the climbs on their SS rides and I'm planning on joining that club real soon! This type of bike will make a man out of you real quick and give you the best all around workout you ever had. (I used to say that about my FS bike, but not anymore.)

    I ride a 32-18 which is equivalent to the middle front ring and around 6th gear in the rear. That might sound impossible to work steep hills with, but I'm telling you, it can be done! Primarily because you aren't losing any of your power to the suspension and gear network. It's all transfered to the rear wheel and the acceleration and momentum you can maintain is amazing. It'll work you hard, but if you have the heart (and legs) you'll be surprised at how much you can make. My buds ride the Avalon standard 32-17, but I'll wait a little bit before taking that plunge. So you can see that middle ring front and 6th gear still allows you to carry decent speed while making most climbs as well. Sure, you'll get smoked on flats, but the rest is worth it.

    I am personally faster on my SS than my FS. Probably because I have to attack the hills, and even on milder portions, on my FS I would gear down where the SS you have to carry a minimum amount of speed and it's easier to go a little faster then trudge real slow with the extra effort. I actually ENJOY standing up where on my FS I almost never did it and when I did it, I hated it. Another unexpected benefit is that I can use a lighter more uncomfortable seat because you stand up so often, it gives your butt a rest and is less painful even after a couple of hours riding on a rigid frame.

    I ride to have fun and to keep a decent level of fitness, and for the time spent on the trails I get more of both.

    I couldn't give a crap about making FS Gear guys look silly and I personally don't think that most riders would even notice a SS or not. All they see is a stronger rider going by. Everyone posting about smoking a FS Gearie would get smoked by that bike if it had a better rider on it. I do think that the SS is faster on many types of trails, but a faster rider will smoke your ass no matter which type he's riding.

    Considering how many other posts there are regarding FS bikes being relegated to spare bikes, there must be something to it. I suggest you try it, stick with it for at least 5 rides to give it a chance, and then you'll either be a SS rider, or not. And you can't get a real feel for it by just staying in a higher gear on your FS bike. Like I said before, a huge part of the power comes from not haveing suspension or a least a hardtail frame with a lock-out type front fork. It's not for the faint of heart, but if you make it past the first 5 rides, I think you'll be hooked. It only took me two...

  53. #253
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    no benefit; we're only human, we make weird decisions, like electing george w.........

    Seriosly, no one knows, people who ride ss are possesed or something. I would know, ss is my life.

    Okay, well it's easier to mantain, quieter, cheaper maintenance, "clean" look

  54. #254
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    Honest Opinion

    I can see both sides of the SS vs multi-speed spectrum.

    With single speed you gain advantages of:

    - No rear deraileur to get messed up or no hanger to get broke.
    - Less likely to have chain issues because there is no shifting.
    - Less weight (I really don't understand how that could be that much of an advantage, I don't think a rear deraileur can weight that much to affect any performance gain by the lack thereof).
    - Frees up the constant, "What gear is best for the terrain I am going to encounter" worry.
    - With no rear deraileur or hanger, less things to get caught on an object on a trail or what have you. (happened to me, I broke my deraileur hangar on a wire fence I got too close to).

    With multi-speed you gain advantages of:

    - Less exertion caused by terrain with the ability to change to gearing more advantageous to the rider thus the theoretical advantage of distance riding versus a SS who would have to exert more energy for the same distance. Given rider of same fitness level of course.
    - If for some wierd reason one of your gears gets chewed, you can use the other gears. (Just a wild guess, but you never know).
    - If chain breaks, most of the time the chain can be shortened to the smaller gears to use as a single speed in an emergency situation. Providing riders that only have a chain tool with no links or replacement parts.

    This is just a few I can think of right now. I am not biased either way, just trying to openly think of both sides.

  55. #255
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    I can understand how people love single speed, from their glee of knowing they went past a shifter bike, to less noise, weight, and maintenance. I DO think some of you are over the edge when you state how 'pure' it is, and how you feel connect to the earth, and it makes a 'man' with a single speed. Let me see if I have this right. If you ride singe speed, that's cool. Single speed, no suspension even cooler.Single speed, no suspension, steel frame, now your becoming a man.
    Single speed, no suspension, steel frame, and no coast, your a real man?
    I think some of you boys are drawing an arbitrary line at what's pure and what's not. Single speed or whatever, you're still on a man made machine that makes moving through the woods easier for you. If you want 'pure' and really want to feel connected, ditch your helping machine and try running through the trails with no help from your wheels, chains, etc. Now that's 'pure' Even then you'll be disconnected from purity with your $80 high tech shoes that keep your feet pampered. Oh and for you that act as though steel is cool and pure and aluminum is for sissys, last time I checked aluminum was an element, and steel was a man made mixture, so I guess riding an aluminum frame is actually more 'pure' and less pampering.
    Oh and one last thing, I say ditch the handlebar grips. Just like suspension, that only adds weight, and a 'squishy' feel, and makes you less of a man.?

  56. #256
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    I'm surprised nobody dared strap on a set of 'nuts' to challenge my assumptions. Is my guess of self defined 'standards' correct?

  57. #257
    Alles komt goed!
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    You can use singlespeed for a excuse for everything.
    I am so fast, because of my singlespeed.
    Today i was a bit slow, because of my singlespeed.
    My hands are really hurting, because of my rigid singlespeed.
    My knees feel so good after i switched to my rigid singlespeed.
    Today i crashed, because of my fixed mtb.

    I use these excuses too and even more!

    In answer to BobV, just use your own set of rules to use your own excuses
    ---------------------------
    Gijs, from the mountain

  58. #258
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    BobV,

    Hearkening back to the Tao of Singlespeeding post way back in this thread, and to quote Lao Tsu in response to your question about purity and its relation to technology...


    A wise man knows when enough is enough.

  59. #259
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    You gave the best answer I've heard about why we ride single speeds.

    Knew I love riding a single speed..

    I just couldn't explain why to others.

    The part about getting a good workout while riding with other riders looking for a more relaxed ride is a great insight to share.
    "Those who are afraid to go too far will never know how far they can go"

  60. #260
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    contempt prior to investigation!

  61. #261
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    Wow, that's a lot of tripe, try it and see if it works for you, if not ride gears.

  62. #262
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    Quote Originally Posted by kawboy8
    Single speeds are dumb. I had a single speed when I was 4. Someone said, "because their the new thing...mainstream". How dumb. Because everyone else is doing it...lets all run out and buy a bike that technology has left behind.
    I do not agree with that, that is all I have to say.
    Dave

  63. #263
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    Lance Armstrong taught singlespeed technique

    Quote Originally Posted by dtrek4500
    I do not agree with that, that is all I have to say.
    Dave
    You have to be an animal to ride singlespeed. Those who do not get it are the ones who do not understand that momentum and discipline is why we ride singlespeed. Lance Armstrong beat Ulrich on the climbs because he proved that spinning in a lower gear did not fatique the muscles the way the bigger gears do. It takes unbelievable strength, but in the end the turtle wins.

  64. #264
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    Word.

  65. #265
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    Smile Why singlespeed?

    In all my years of riding road, mountain, triathlon, etc, I have never gotten as many comments or as much notice as I have with my single speed. So, I love that.

    Pride and satisfaction of having tried something difficult even though I might bonk completely which I haven't.

    My riding is definitely improving because of this. I have much less bike to clean and repair afterwards.

  66. #266
    IM Singleminded!
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    it's fun!

    i have to agree with screampint, it's fun! give it a try... i also found that sometimes i ride fast/harder as i am not thinking about trying to shift gears and make it "easier" on myself.

  67. #267
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    Why Indeed

    Quote Originally Posted by iviguy
    I don't get it. With different cogs and gear ratios it seems like having a 21, 24, or 27 speed would be superior to a singlespeed. So what is the benefit? Is it only weight? I have a bike I could convert but I am having trouble justifying it.
    After looking at the picture gallery and seeing many many single speed pics, I am also wondering what the deal is with the single speeds? I've been away for a while so I am out of the loop as to what is going on in the MTB world.

  68. #268
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    Just borrow one for a day, you might like it!

  69. #269
    ravingbikefiend
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    It started with one SS and now there are 5 of them in my shop / garage as my 14 year old (god bless him) tried my SS and wanted one for himself so we built one up.

    There's a HT for the twisty singletrack, a fully rigid steel SS for singletrack, XC, and winter commuting, a roadie running a 52:16, and a vintage 1933 coaster bike that runs a 52:18 that I'd consider an SS and 29'r although I don't think I'll be hitting the singletrack with the old girl.

    I ride with a few other local MTBr's here and many have been building up singlespeeds for the road and trail and their comments after riding SS have been nothing but positive.

    Singlespeeding is a hard thing to explain and something that has to be experienced firsthand to be appreciated.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  70. #270
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    Hello e'ryone
    I'm new here.
    I want to get a SS simpley because it is like a bridge for me to my days of riding BMX-85to97.
    I have a FS G Fisher and have had multiple front susp. bikes but they never seem to be as fun(for me, anyway) as a hardtail singlespeed.
    I dont want one because of a trend.
    I could care less.
    Not interested in fixies...never rode one.
    I think it would be cool to try one, though.
    Whats the big deal?
    Ride what you like without hurting others.
    If you think you dont like something, thats your choice.
    If you try it out and then like it, thats ok, too.
    It's not a BAD thing to change your opinion of something.

  71. #271
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    Components

    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver
    It started with one SS and now there are 5 of them in my shop / garage as my 14 year old (god bless him) tried my SS and wanted one for himself so we built one up.
    Can you recommend some online stores to purchase single speed components like front and rear sprockets, chains and such. When building an SS do most people just use BMX components?

  72. #272
    ravingbikefiend
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    I now have 4 SS bikes and a 3 speed.

    marin... I haven't used any ss specific parts and have converted existing bikes into singlespeeds.

    With freewheel hubs a BMX freewheel works really well as it lines up quite closely (and often perfectly with the existing middle ring of a 2 or 3 speed crank... my road ss was converted in this manner and was built for all of $60.00 (which includes the beautiful vintage bike). It is evil fast as it's frame and forks are Reynolds 531 and even with it's vintage parts it's still a very lightweight bicycle.

    MY Trek HT and my son's Miele SS also use a BMX freewheel with a tensioner since the vertical dropouts need it with the gearing we're running. My son's bike uses some heavy duty parts since he's 6 foot 1, curbs out at about 230 lbs, and kills normal bikes. Converting my Trek cost less than the roadie as I only had to buy the BMx freewheel and modify and old derailleur to use as a tensioner.

    My rigid uses a freehub in the rear and converting an existing freehub is quite easy...you just remove all the cogs you don't want and keep 1... since the old rigid has horizontal dropouts a chain tensioner wasn't required. I just de - converted the rigid SS into a 1 by 3 by adding a few cogs, a rear derailleur, and a Deore thumbie..

    You could buy a frame with track dropouts (rear facing), and buy an SS specific rear hub/cog and then no tensioner would be required.

    An eccentric hub / bottom bracket can also eliminate the need for tensioners on bikes with vertical dropouts but they're pricey.

    Running BMX chain and sprockets is a good idea since the chain is stronger and a BMX cog isn't ramped which helps prevent chain skip...with this being said I haven't had any issue with using good quality (KMC and SRAM) 7-8 speed chain.

    Steel chainrings are also good as there's a great deal of load that's put on an SS driveline since there's going to be more standing and pounding the pedals than there is with a geared bike.

    I don't buy any parts online but frequent my local shops and use a lot of salvaged / recycled parts. Other folks could give some good info as to where the good online deals are to be had.

    My 4th SS is an old CCM coaster bike with a single gearing of 52:18 and it was originally built that way back in 1933 which is an indicator that this whole one speed thing isn't as much of a fad as it is a renaissance.

    My "ghetto" conversions (this is what we call them at the shop) have been holding up extremely well and have been very solid and dependable rides which proves that one does not have to drop a ton of cash to build a decent ride.

    My next conversion will be to build a ghettoized fixed gear roadie... one has to remove the freewheel, thread in a single 14 tooth cog and an old bb lockring with a good dollop of industrial loctite.

    I know many folks who have been riding the hell out of this type of fixed gear without any problems and the build cost is nominal if you have a good wheel and hub to work with.

    Building them is half the fun.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

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  73. #273
    meh... whatever
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    Quote Originally Posted by iviguy
    I don't get it. With different cogs and gear ratios it seems like having a 21, 24, or 27 speed would be superior to a singlespeed. So what is the benefit? Is it only weight? I have a bike I could convert but I am having trouble justifying it.
    why a full rigid ss? simple... 1% bike & 99% rider. its about the purity of the ride. the simplicity of the machine. its about feeling the trail rather than being insulated from it.

    you see, its easy to climb when you can gear down. its easy to haul ass over rough terrain (rooty, rocky, baby heads, etc.) when you have 4 or more inches of plush travel at both ends of the bike. its easy to huck when the suspension takes the hit. its easy to jump when your bike absorbs the impact. its quite another to do these things on a rigid bike with one gear.

    with a ss its all about rider ability. period.

    as was said a few posts ago i must agree that one should be careful when assigning the term "superior" when referring to geared squishy bikes. i happen to be one of those 29'er ss'ers who can crush those who ride full squishy geared bikes.

    i race ss class and turn lap times on par with the fastest expert class gearie riders. i pass people both climbing and descending. in fact, on one trip to moab while on my karate monkey (a 26 lb. beast of a single speed) we got caught on the top of amasa back as a wicked storm blew in. we had hooked up with a group of downhill/northshore type riders from canada on big hit bikes and we shagged out to get off the trail before the storm hit. despite the fact that they were on norcos, ellsworths, and some other long travel bikes i made it to the bottom about 4 minutes faster than they did... and they weren't shabby riders.

    i've finished 8th on the monkey in the ouachita challenge despite starting in 198th position due to a delay at the start. that's gaining 190 position spots while riding 66 miles through ozarks against people on full squishy geared bikes. thats riding past people who were PUSHING their geared bikes uphill! LOL

    1% bike, 99% rider.

    if you dont get it, then maybe its not for you. and if you dont get it, thats ok. its not for everyone.

    my advice is to get a surly ss conversion kit from speedgoat.com and throw it on the bike you have now. then you can at least get an idea, and can sell it on ebay if you dont like it or decide you want to get a dedicated ss. or preferably (so you get the FULL effect) either find a used ss on ebay, or get a redline monocog (about $450 brand new!) and give it a shot. if you dont like it, you can sell it on ebay and wont be out very much, but at least will have the satisfaction of knowing.

    bottom line is you wont understand until you try. its like trying to describe what vanilla tastes like. take a bite and youll either lick your lips or spit it out... and only THEN will you know.

    no matter what... just RIDE... anything... as long as you're on the trail.
    Last edited by monogod; 03-13-2007 at 08:29 AM.
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  74. #274
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    Quote Originally Posted by marin2006
    Can you recommend some online stores to purchase single speed components like front and rear sprockets, chains and such. When building an SS do most people just use BMX components?
    www.speedgoat.com is a great resource for ss parts. however, try to buy from your LBS whenever possible. they can order you just about anything you want, and will usually pricematch for you.

    no, most people dont use bmx components. a few do, but theres no need to do so. surly makes great stainless steel chainrings and cogs, and ss parts are made to handle the abuse.
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

  75. #275
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    BMX freewheels and cogs are built to take abuse and in some areas, easier to acquire than the pricier ss specific components.

    They're pretty much the same thing except they cost more when you say their ss parts.

    I'm not saying that Surly doesn't make some great bikes and parts and when you compare their prices to others, they look downright thrifty.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

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  76. #276
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver
    BMX freewheels and cogs are built to take abuse and in some areas, easier to acquire than the pricier ss specific components.
    my point about ss parts being able to take the abuse was not that bmx part couldnt take it, but rather that there is no strength deficit in using ss parts or strength benefit in using bmx parts, which is what i gathered the question was basically about.

    as for being easy to acquire, i believe ups delivers worldwide...

    They're pretty much the same thing except they cost more when you say their ss parts.
    ive personally never witnessed "ss price gouging" on speedgoat, pricepoint, bikeman, jensenusa, cambriabike, et al, or LBS. not saying its never happened, just saying ive never seen it.

    I'm not saying that Surly doesn't make some great bikes and parts and when you compare their prices to others, they look downright thrifty.
    unless its chris king stuff, surly is on par with most everyone else. as far as going with bmx freewheels... unless you buy a GOOD bmx freewheel ($75.00 eno) it comes apart rather quickly. i can explode an acs freewheel in less than a month, and destroy a pyramid in less than a week. but even so cogs & freewheels are similarly priced with an acs freewheel being about 20 bucks, cnc surly cog just a few buckaroos more.

    same with alloy chainrings, whether bmx or mountain. unless i use good stainless chainrings i can plan on replacing them regularly and often.

    therefore it comes down to simple economics... buy good parts less frequently and have the piece of mind about reliability on the trail, or spend more in the long run buying inferior throw away products.

    oh, another thing is that bmx chainrings are rather hard to come buy in lower tooth configurations (30-34) and most times MUST be used with bmx specific cranks. additionally, bmx hubs are 110 width rather than 135 and therefore cant be used on any 26" application other than the older redline monocogs.

    so when building a good wheelset from ground up its far better to go the ss hub/cog route rather than a spin on bmx type freewheel route unless you rarely (if ever) change your gearing. if you have your gearing dialed in and dont need to change very often then go for a paul, phil, or eno hub with an eno freewheel and you have a hub/freewheel combo that will outlast the bike. plus eno freewheels are rebuildable AND serviceable unlike most bmx freewheels.

    lastly, its easier to change ratios with an ss specific hub or converted geared hub/spacer/cog setup, and MUCH less expensive to have gearing options around. compare the price of a surly cog with an eno freewheel and you can get 3 or 4 cogs for the price of a single eno... not to mention a few cogs are easy to throw in the toolbox whereas a few enos take up some space and mass.

    plus, the price of a convert kit to mod a geared wheel to ss is much cheaper than building a ss specific wheelset. i personally prefer king ss hubs because of their strength, reliability, engagement point ratio, and cuz they just plain sexy bling bling! hadleys are nice too (and similar in number of engagement points to the king, but dont come in colors) as are american classic, dt swiss, etc are all much more affordable than the king.

    but i bloviate...

    basically when answering an ss newbie/prospect on whether or not to seek out and use bmx parts i would always tend to recommend just going ss specific rather than trying to locate and cobble together bmx parts. if one has old bmx parts laying around then obviously they could be used, but then again if one already had extensive bike wrenching expertise they wouldnt be asking the question to begin with anyway...
    Last edited by monogod; 03-14-2007 at 08:50 AM.
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

  77. #277
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    Single Speeds rule! You'll sell your geared.
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  78. #278
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    Why I Single Speed

    I rode a geared bike for years. I upgraded until I was on a $2,300 FS bike. I have traditionally been toward the back of the pack when riding. When I got the single speed (29er, full-rigid), I shot to near the front on every ride. Why is that? I think there are a few reasons. Mainly, I find that standing and pedalling allows me to use my upper-body strength. I''m fairly muscular, but that upper-body power seemed useless in the 'sit-and-spin' world of geared mountain biking. It was all cardio. I would gas, fall behind, no matter how hard I tried. My muscles in the arms back and chest were just dead weight to carry. But with a single speed I find that I'm pulling up on the bars with my arms and shoulders while pushing down on the pedals with my quads. I'm strong. That works. I turn a slower gear on hills, but I power up them. Maybe I'm an atypical case, but I felt like, "this single speed thing is a dirty little secret! It's acutally EASIER than riding gears!"

    All along I thought if I struggled with gears I would certainly bonk with only one gear. Not true. And the drive train is more efficient as everything lines up and there is no lateral loss of energy. Standing is easier, and I do so about 80% of the ride.

    Besides all that, there is an undeniably different feel and quality to the rides. Yes, it's true that the thinking/planning/executing invovled in shifting gears is a mental drain. And not having that drain frees up the mind for other planning tasks: keeping momentum, finding a clean line, etc.

    It is erroneous, in my experience, to think that single speeding is categorically more difficult than geared riding.

    Give it a try and see how it feels.

  79. #279
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    Quote Originally Posted by iviguy
    and the shoes
    and the shorts
    and the brakes
    and the camelbak
    and the other riders laughing at me as they pass going up hill...

    I am sure it's probably fun. Just don't know if it is worth it to me or not. Although having a 20lb bike would be cool.
    Ok, check it out:

    You will be a faster climber (eventually) once you get the gear that works for you and make it harder.

    You will bash fewer parts (lack of Der. cassette, shifters, fewer chain rings).

    You may not be as fast on the flats but who cares you can now climb like a mule!

    It's just plain fun in a very simple bike setup.

    If you have a bike you can convert by all means try it. You really aren't out that much $ (singulator, spacers etc.) if you don't like it and it is nothing to convert back. Just trust me end every other single speeder, its worth a try.

  80. #280
    Wheel Doctor
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    Simple, reliable and bulletproof.

  81. #281
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    A friend and I convinced each other to convert a bike and give it a shot. Two years later and I no longer have a geared mountain bike. I thought mountain biking was addictive enough and now I have to deal with this.

  82. #282
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    Have grown so tired of seeing "new" bikes in the $2000.00 plus range on every page of any bike mag. Real bikes - real people. give me an ss showing trail scars, and I'm happy on any trail. Doesn't matter if its made from your old wheels or a second morgage is used in buying it...just use it and enjoy! Don't worry about the paint job!

  83. #283
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    It's a virtuous cycle!

    Riding single speed you get fitter and stronger, because you can't down shift while climbing, you learn how to use your whole body, you get faster because you learn to conserve speed and use the breaks as least as possible, plus you get the bonus of a light bike without spending a fortune.

    In short your riding skills improve and you have more fun riding (and feel better about yourself).

    That's why I do it.
    Last edited by dblspeed; 04-15-2007 at 05:26 AM.

  84. #284
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    who singlespeeds

    i figured it out the other day. i am the type of person who goes up the stairs, two (or more) at a time. going up one at a time (much like granny gearing) uses less energy, but who has the patience for that. bounding up them is what i do. so what if i'm panting at the top, i'm up there before a step at a time guy.

  85. #285
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    how much does it cost... on average... to convert to a ss?

  86. #286
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    Gliding and singlespeeding

    In a time when complexity and sophistication are synonymous with progress, uncomplicated things that work well take on particular elegance in the minds of some. So it is with Singlespeeding. It refutes the axiom: "You get what you pay for." Singlespeed bikes have less parts, and entire regions of maintenance and the anxiety associated with breakage are eliminated. It's Occam's razor applied to mountain biking.

    But what's it like to ride a singlespeed mountain bike, and how is it different from riding a geared one? I've never flown airplanes, but maybe it's similar to gliders and engine-driven aircraft. One has more parts, climbs faster, and doesn't have to work so closely with the surrounding conditions: it uses the technology to overcome the envronment. The other has fewer parts, and performance becomes a function of the conditions and the particular approach used by the pilot. One uses engine power and multiple systems to ensure success; the other uses momentum and conservation of energy. One makes noise, and you can almost hear the hours of engineering and design meetings behind it; the other is less noisy and more at peace with what it can and cannot do. One can sometimes be more about the destination; the other is more about the journey.

    I don't mean to sound like a wine snob about it, but there's just something less 'pharmaceutical' about singlespeeding. In my hopelessly idealistic mind, it's anti big corporation. I read where someone likened it to "sticking it to the man". I like that.

    It might be argued with equal passion that riding gears is actually more challenging. There's a certain kind of brute force necessary to muscle a geared, suspension bike up a hill--the payoff being exhilarating descents pedalling with full force, while I trail behind on my singlespeed, trying to be as aerodynamic as possible to maintain my momentum. Or the fully suspended rider screaming over rock gardens like a freight train, while I carefully weave my full-rigid single speed 29er between rocks and obstacles, looking for any scrap of a line that I can cling to.

    Gears versus singlespeed riding: separate but equal in my mind.

  87. #287
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victor61

    Gears versus singlespeed riding: separate but equal in my mind.
    Good attitude. Since I am not a venue snob I feel the same way. My current SS is a 99' Raleigh M20 (steel and the cheapest they made) with an older Manitou fork. I made it out odd spare parts. I may look into a nice 29er. I also ride a SS/Fixie IRO Mark V. Same as ridin' it, as the SS MTB....gotta power up the hills, was tough for me to get used to since I was trained to spin 100+ in my road racing/crit years. Thankfully I still have good knees at 57.

  88. #288
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    A new Single Speed rider

    Quote Originally Posted by endure26
    Because singlespeed is now mainstream. Everybody's doing it. Make sure you pick up a fixie too. Oh...and make sure they're pink.

    When you're done, make sure you come back and tell us all about how you converted your this and that hardtail and it was a religious experience - or post pics of yet another BASS/DISS/PUSS or 1x1.

    Me? I'm saving for the recumbent.
    Very funny post!

    Funny you should mention recumbents. I really ride a very fast one out on the roads. Trouble is most road riders at least where I live hate them. Please save your money and ride a SS bike.
    I have done sub 10 double century road rides on a high end "bent but am out of that sort of thing now. I converted an old Specialized Rockhooper frameset laying in my basement to a Single speed. The only part that worked was the crank. I put on a Salsa 36 tooth in front and an 18 tooth in back and built a set of wheels for next to nothing. The rear has a bolt on Surly deal. Works great. I have been off of Mountain bikes for at least 5 years but now I ride that SS at least twice a week. Yes I am embarrassed to confess I still ride around on the road on that recumbent.
    I Highly recommend against such a bike but if you must get one keep in mind that all distance and speed records are set on them! Please save your money for a single speed or fixed gear traditional diamond framed "real" bicycle.
    I guess my first post here is answering a troll....

    TiAero

  89. #289
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    Same dammed thing you know

    I was out on the trail with my new SS convert the Rockhopper monster. It is 2 to 1 and it rocks and I put a nice set of wheels on it with a nice good rolling set of tires. And What did I encounter? The lounge Lizards in the trail parking lot with there big dollar rigs. When we hit the trail it was pretty much over after a few miles. The lizards went back to the coffee shop and the reall mountain bikers road the trail.
    Single speed bikes are not about pure speed but about pure economy and effeciecy and simplicity and just a chain to clean and not a dual rig to overhaul. That was the reason why I got out of Mountain biking. Single speed simplicty got me back in to the sport.
    I have been just about everywhere on the bicycle from Recumbents to road bikes to now SS mountain bikes.
    Simple is best. Fastest is on the road on a performance Bent.
    But speed is not everything and I am out of this type of thing also.
    The Single speed mountain bike lifestyle offers a total body workout in a short amount of time with the reward as "Homer Simpson" says learning juice (Beer) at the end of the ride...

    TiAero

  90. #290
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    Great for ADD/ADHD folks

    Steering, braking, looking ahead, controlling the bike, timing pedalling strokes, AND changing gears! God forbid you've got on-the-fly suspension modifications that are available to you. Yeesh! Talk about multi-tasking. I'm ADD and not having to think about shifting or physically conduct shifting has really allowed me to pour more of my meek concentration skills into all the other tasks. And hey, if you think you won't be able to hack it up the hills with only one gear, ride a small gear ratio. Better yet, go to the doc and get a script for speed - that should help.
    2017 Diamondback Haanjo
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  91. #291
    ravingbikefiend
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    I should add that there's a risk that after riding SS for a time you start wondering what it would be like to ride a fixed gear.

    I now have a fixed gear for the trail and a fixed gear for the road and think this is about as pure a riding experience there is...
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  92. #292
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    I just bought a 07 Stp SS Singlespeed , and i love it , i didnt wait for the Giant Stp w/speeds cuz im to stupid to shift :P

  93. #293
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    Quote Originally Posted by iviguy
    I don't get it. With different cogs and gear ratios it seems like having a 21, 24, or 27 speed would be superior to a singlespeed. So what is the benefit? Is it only weight? I have a bike I could convert but I am having trouble justifying it.

    It is the weight, and removing the hassel of shifting, and hammering up hill, less stuff that can go wrong with your bike, and you can put a cool little sticker on your bike that reads "ONE FU@&ING SPEED"

  94. #294
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver
    I should add that there's a risk that after riding SS for a time you start wondering what it would be like to ride a fixed gear.

    I now have a fixed gear for the trail and a fixed gear for the road and think this is about as pure a riding experience there is...
    werd!
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

  95. #295
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    Quote Originally Posted by dblspeed
    Riding single speed you get fitter and stronger, because you can't down shift while climbing, you learn how to use your whole body, you get faster because you learn to conserve speed and use the breaks as least as possible, plus you get the bonus of a light bike without spending a fortune.

    In short your riding skills improve and you have more fun riding (and feel better about yourself).
    I'd like to argue that you can learn these things on a geared bike as well. I've been MTB riding for 6? years, and would say that I understand exactly what you're talking about. Half the time I don't downshift to climb, and I actually stand up. Actually I did that more before I learned how to shift correctly. But sometimes if I don't feel like shifting, I'll just stand up. I completely agree that the momemtum thing is key though, that took a couple of years to figure out. Maybe it's faster on an SS, I don't know

    Quote Originally Posted by neanderthaler
    i figured it out the other day. i am the type of person who goes up the stairs, two (or more) at a time. going up one at a time (much like granny gearing) uses less energy, but who has the patience for that. bounding up them is what i do. so what if i'm panting at the top, i'm up there before a step at a time guy
    I'm with you on that, I'm a double step guy too. I stopped my front DR from moving to the small chainring position, because the grannies just make my rear wheel spin.

    What really makes me consider the SS thing is the simplicity and not having to think about shifting, what's rubbing, why I'm ghost shifting, etc.

  96. #296
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    i have been riding single speed for 2 years now, and i love it. it saves weight, and its cheap. i do a lot of dirrt jumping, and the very worst thing to happen on the approach to a jump is for your bike to slip a gear and put your knee through the stem. with single speed, there are no mechs, and i know from when i used to ride gears, that they break the most, and cost alot too. also, single speeds do not need maintainance after every ride. once a year at the most. and after these two years of single speed, my legs are stronger than any of my geared friends. for full on mountain or XC, singlespeed is only for nutters i think, but downhill, street and dirt, its the ****
    Cracked my head open on your kitchen floor,
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  97. #297
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    for crying out loud...

    Quote Originally Posted by iviguy
    I don't get it. With different cogs and gear ratios it seems like having a 21, 24, or 27 speed would be superior to a singlespeed. So what is the benefit? Is it only weight? I have a bike I could convert but I am having trouble justifying it.
    I'm not quite done with my most recent SS build, but unlike a few of the other comments on here, I'll at least explain my thought behind it instead of engaging in the rather ridiculous name-calling and whatnot.

    I hate my front dérailleur. I'm not suggesting that I could personally make something better, but when XTR isn't good enough, I'll try something new. So, 1x9 it was, for a while, until out of curiosity and the availability of cheap spare parts, I converted. At the time my only bike was a FS XC rig, which I decided does better as a 1x9, but my new hardtail commuter/city bike will be SS. It has a little to do with weight savings, acceleration, etc. but more to do with simplicity.

    For lack of a better explanation, I fell in love with mountain biking because of the euphoric carefree feeling I get when I ride, whether to work or on the local trail, no matter what I ride. There is something kind of primal about SS: my energy transfered to motion, without a complicated go between, or a clunking mess of gears. So go ahead and bash me if you disagree, what you ride is a personal preference, and I found what I like. You might like it too.

  98. #298
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    Quote Originally Posted by kawboy8
    Single speeds are dumb. I had a single speed when I was 4. Someone said, "because their the new thing...mainstream". How dumb. Because everyone else is doing it...lets all run out and buy a bike that technology has left behind.
    Interesting thought: Are single speeds any dumber than combustion engines? ..... noticed the motorcycle icon...... talk about dumb. I had a motorcycle when I was 12. What are you going to ride when technology (and the incredibly poor management of natural resources, i.e. oil) leaves your loud, graceless, wasteful and toxic motorcycle behind?

  99. #299
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    Its congruent with the Compassionate Conservative Philosophy

    Give a new trail rider a bike, but a single speed. Afford him the infrastructure, but require the work of the rider.

    "What? Only one gear? How am I going to make it up these hills with but one mid-range gear?"


    [Blood]

    ...

    [Sweat]

    ...

    [Tears]


    A rider Born anew: strong and self-sufficient.

    Reflection
    A specie doesn't design itself, the environment determines the specie...unless the specie becomes conscious of the specie/environment relationship and purposely manipulates its environment in order to purposely design itself.

    SS: Embrace less, become more.

    Ironic Disclaimer: Bush proves the doctrine he purports to subscribe to by being the opposite: Given everything, he developed into nothing (don't tell me a pawn with an impressive title means sh*t).
    2017 Diamondback Haanjo
    2016 Pivot 429T
    2011 Kona Unit

  100. #300
    cdkrenz
    Reputation: cdkrenz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    35
    I just bought a Bianchi SASS a few week ago and I love it. There's something to be said for simplicity. 1 gear, no suspention, just you, your bike and the trail. You won't regret having a singlespeed.

    And another thing. It's not about how fast you go. Your gal should have told you that years ago.

    -Later,
    CK

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