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  1. #501
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    Where did the SS FAQ's go? I do not see them anywhere. Any Ideas? They were a nice resource.

  2. #502
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    Quote Originally Posted by captnpenguin View Post
    I love the quietness of the ride and that I really have nothing to blame but me and my fat a$$ if I can't make it up a hill

    I learned how to ride on a SS way back. My dad assembled a red cruiser for me when I was a kid. This was before cassettes. I complained a lot about the huge crank and having the smallest sprocket since it was really, really, really hard to pedal. No one liked riding my cruiser except me. The other kids liked each other's bikes so much and swapped a lot. LOL!

    But to be honest it seems more efficient to pedal than smaller cranks and larger sprockets. Thing is our street ran uphill. I had a 12T sprocket if I'm not mistaken, and the crank was as big as china ware.

    I'm currently on the build. Still an SS

  3. #503
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    Big shout out to the owner of our LBS anyways. I got a set of 2 cogs (12T and 18T) plus 2 spacers and a lock ring from Da Bomb single conversion kit last week and I rang her earlier to ask on cassettes that sold separately as I thought I'd have a problem using 8/9 speed chains with the single cog. She could have sold me a cassette and made extra on my purchase but she actually informed me that the single cogs I got with the kit will accommodate the usual 8/9 speed chains.

    That made my day!

  4. #504
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    I singlespeed in Santa Cruz and my geared friend calls me crazy, but hey, im right on his ass during every climb

  5. #505
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    Quote Originally Posted by majurglery View Post
    I singlespeed in Santa Cruz and my geared friend calls me crazy, but hey, im right on his ass during every climb
    wet as holy hell there now

    the sandy bits should finally be packed down though

    see ya on the trails
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  6. #506
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    Quote Originally Posted by CHUM View Post
    wet as holy hell there now

    the sandy bits should finally be packed down though

    see ya on the trails
    I know, Ive been itching to get out there, but it looks like I still have some waiting to do

  7. #507
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    I haven't had a singlespeed since my old bmx bike... but I'll admit I've had a guy on a SS blow right past me on climb... its embarrassing... i'm in a granny gear...

    makes me want to at least try SS and see whats it all about.

  8. #508
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    Another SS success story...

    A friend of mine is a bike commuter but had never really tried mountain biking. I have a few extra mountain bikes so we hit the local park with him riding an ancient santa cruz heckler. At one point it was a great bike but the hydraulics are now squishy, suspension like a non-damped pogo stick, worn drive train, stictioned derailer cables, etc. But he had so much fun that the next day he was looking to get a bike for cheap.

    My advice was to forget the sporting-good store cheapo bikes and instead get a used single speed. The reasoning was, with a budget of $400, he could get a decent single speed rather than a new piece of crap. Less components means that the budget is split between fewer things. He ended up finding a SS bianchi locally on craig's list. An old 140mm marz air fork, avid speed dial levers with BB7 calipers. Not a bad setup for the terrain around here.

    The good news is that he loves it. The first time out on this bike he only went over the bars once. He went home with one break lever broken off from the crash but was able to pick one up for cheap at a LBS. The next time out he started playing on all the log piles and stunts, never caring if he slipped off sideways. On a geared bike, he would have ripped the derailer off at least 3 times on that ride. But instead he was able to keep riding and playing on stunts.

    So there you go, for $400 a new mountain biker was born. He's riding an indestructible steel single speed and loving it.

  9. #509
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    Many of the local trails are fast and flowy, comprised of 50 - 100' climbs followed by the same in decent. My riding style in these trails left me most often using a 32/20 combo. The trails are fairly sandy which would greatly advance the wear of a single gear - causing me to replace the entire cassette and chain. This adds up when you are doing it twice per year. After replacing two cassettes and chains in one season, I decided to get a single speed for riding the local trails. I now try to ride it anywhere I can - and more.

  10. #510
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    Quote Originally Posted by CRFed_surfer View Post
    running wider bars with a SS helps a bunch.. i stand up alot and pull on the bars every which way to get the most power down. plus it opens up your arms for better breathing.
    I agree.. got the 780mm boobar myself. Wider bars just makes things extra easier to handle. Plus its hard to enjoy a ride if you stick on the saddle most of the time.

  11. #511
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    Single speed is fun; I have been SSing for 3 seasons now and it has made me a stronger rider. But I have come to the conclusion that SS is a novelty.

    If I had to have only one bike it wouldn't be a SS. While I don't think one needs 27 or 30 gears, having only one really limits what you can ride.
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  12. #512
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    Quote Originally Posted by PoisonDartFrog View Post
    Single speed is fun; I have been SSing for 3 seasons now and it has made me a stronger rider. But I have come to the conclusion that SS is a novelty.

    If I had to have only one bike it wouldn't be a SS. While I don't think one needs 27 or 30 gears, having only one really limits what you can ride.
    The same could be said about just about every type of bike. They're all novelties because they all limit what you can ride. My downhill bike isn't useful anywhere but at lift access resorts. My road bike limits me to the road. My trail bikes prevents me from dirt jumping and downhilling. Etc.

    What really matters is what type of riding someone does most. That determines what is the best single bike to have, if you are to have just one bike. For some people, a single speed meets that criteria best. For others it doesn't.

    I primarily ride single speed because it works best for my local parks. Hilly, rocky, muddy, rooty, lot's of log stunts and no straight level sections where low gearing is an issue. Around here you are either mashing up a hill while standing or bombing down the other side while dodging trees and rocks. Single speeds work great.

  13. #513
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    Singlespeed is great because it's simple and quiet. All I can hear going down the trail is my big balloony tires bouncing over everything

  14. #514
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    I have a Cannondale comfort hybrid that I wasn't riding very often so I converted it to a SS. I have other bikes with gears so wanted something different.

  15. #515
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    Been riding an SS for about 6 months and cannot see myself going back to gears. Went out with my son on Sunday, he's a fit 15 yr old and I am not, but left him on the climbs and he only passed me on the flats/downhill tracks where I spin out. But the best bit was listening to him crunch through gears over and over to get just the right one for that track. Then the inevitable chain suck, gear mis selection and accompanying language that would make his Mum blush!

    I ride SS for simplicity, lightness and because I am riding all the same trails but much better than I ever used to on my full susser.Since I started SS riding has gone from a small band of "oddballs" to most of my riding mates having one in the shed/garage.

    But the best bit of all is that they can be built for next to nothing. With the UK mags advertising the latest bikes at c£3k or $5K, building one for less than £200 or $300 makes me a very happy man. (I'm from Yorkshire - renown for people who are "careful" with money!)
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  16. #516
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    In (my) order of importance...

    Quiet, all I hear is rubber on dirt.

    Simplicity, I just turn the pedals, no thinking about front & rear derailleurs, timing my shifts, etc. just ride.

    Reliable, less to clean, maintain, break.

    Makes me stronger rider, I can go anaerobic and stay there longer than my geared buddies.

    cdouble
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  17. #517
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    My love for singlespeed comes from a childhood problem.
    Back when I was around 8 years old I had a BMX bike and loved it alot, one day my mom decided I needed something better, sold my BMX and bought a geared mountain bike, it was a bright orange Caloi with 6 speeds. That mountain bike never worked properly, and it'd spend most of its time collecting dust, which made me hate gears.
    I've been in love with the simplicity of singlespeed bikes ever since, I am the only person in town riding a single mountain bike, everyone crazy about the latest lightest gear and they think I'm crazy for not having gears, and they get amazed when I'm able to climb in front of them.
    I ride everywhere everyday, rain or shine and I like a simple reliable bike.

  18. #518
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    My love with singlespeeding has just started and I don't know why it hasn't been sooner.

  19. #519
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    single speed convert

    I have been riding mountain bikes for 27 years and always wondered why guys were riding single speed. I have raced against them in cross country races, cycle cross races and see them around. So, I just built my first single speed and now understand why. I am addicted! The bike is amazing, Santa Cruz Highball Carbon, with singulator, easton carbon wheels and weighs 19.5 pounds. Besides that, I have so much fun riding it. I am selling my 26" full suspension bike at the moment. Try it! You will love it.

  20. #520
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    SS rules. I'm a new convert. It is more effort but gives you more back. Great for an upper body workout too. Can't understand why it took me so long to discover it...

  21. #521
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    Thoughts on a frame. Would this Diamond Back frame make a good SS trail bike?
    It is a Hybrid Frame. Not sure how much abuse it can handle.
    Sorry about posting here but as you can see by my post count i'm a noob on this site.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Why singlespeed? (Also see the SS FAQ - Stickied at top of thread list)-5n25ge5m83j43n83h4c5nac8197f709de1e47.jpg  

    Last edited by gmmeyerIII; 05-23-2012 at 05:46 PM. Reason: left potent info out

  22. #522
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    I get fond memory's of comin off the training wheels when talkn about single speed.

    If I could still show you the first bike that I had without training wheels it would look as if someone placed it on its side onto concrete and and pulled it by its handlebars while someone else pressed the frame while they pulled.

  23. #523
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    I was never sure of the hype around SS. Been racing road and mtb for many years and always thought why would I not want any gears.....until I got on a SS. It will change your life!!! You may not go as fast is some guys but it is super fun and rewarding when you have pushed and pulled to get up a climb and everyone else was sitting in their granny gears.

  24. #524
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    I got my ss because i couldnt afford a fancy bike...$650 bucks and have a race ready rig...you never know how much power you are losing with suspension until you go rigid...every calorie you burn goes straight to the ground...has been one of my favorite bikes ever

  25. #525
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    and you cant beat the quiet/tight feeling ride..but my trails are very smooth and fast...

  26. #526
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    My GT singlespeed
    Last edited by rock622; 06-30-2012 at 01:45 AM.

  27. #527
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    Quote Originally Posted by rock622 View Post
    My GT singlespeed

  28. #528
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    I understand why some people choose to run ss. On my 27 speed i only use like 3-4 gears most of the time. My big question is why is no one running belt drive?

  29. #529
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    Because the original incarnation of the belt drive was a total flop with many issues. Basically, the belt takes a higher tension and loads up the bearings and frame flex was allowing the belt to slip off on the first gen bikes.
    Gates redesigned the belt system with a new center track and they now have a frame spec that calls for fairly stiff chain stays (belt stays). The 2nd gen product seems to work, but costs lots more especially if you want to be able to change gearing once in a while. Also, you realize that you have to have a frame made for belts since there has to be a break in either the chainstay or the seat stay on the drive side.

    Also chains are 98% efficient and belts are only around 95% efficient at transmitting power and by the time you figure the frame is heavier the overall weight is more. Also, the extra bearing loads might further reduce efficiency, but that would be hard to quantify. The great advantage of the belts is practically zero maintenance and long life.
    Full rigid SS, Hardtail SS, Hardtail Geared, Full Suspension Geared.

  30. #530
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    I was just curious. I saw 1 or 2 belt drive 29ers at my lbs and wondered why no one has converted anything to belt. That makes total sense about the frame thing. Can't break a belt like you can a chain.
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  31. #531
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    One of my single speeds is full rigid and at some point I would probably like to swap that to a belt drive frame. I already like the fact that I don't have to clean the fork after every ride and if it had a belt it would basically be a no maintenance bike. I hardly ever change the gearing and if it was belt I would just never change it. My other SS has a Fox and lighter (aluminum) frame. It is my go fast ss and I would not want a belt on it since I gear it for the course, etc.
    Full rigid SS, Hardtail SS, Hardtail Geared, Full Suspension Geared.

  32. #532
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    From what i read Frank Schneider won megavalanche with a belt drive single speed.
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  33. #533
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    This belt subtopic is very interesting.. I suspected as much about the low efficiency, but had no idea about frame stiffness requirements. Wanted a belt-driven Ti rigid SS for the same reason as yourdaguy.

    BTW, Frank Schneider's hardtail is built around a Nicolai frame and I guess its rear triangle is very stiff.
    26" rigid SS 4130 BB7 nylon-flats ESI latex-tubes non-lubricated-8spd

  34. #534
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    Tested my El Mariachi on the trails (the most technical and steep we have) for the first time yesterday. For the first time i realized what riding rigid SS on techical and steep terrain really is. I like it's handling. The bars seemed to be high at first, so i lowered the stem and it felt great both climbing and descending. The climbing felt different from 26'' wheels - it is harder to accelerate so it needs some time to adapt, get familiar with 29er and use it's strengths better (my first 29er). However i haven't ever climbed the stuff that I climbed yesteday on any bike so maybe I'm subjective.
    The great thing ridng SS is your ability to see your weak sides. I saw that I'm not strong enough to climb everything so I had to walk from time to time. Another great thing is that SS helps yo to strengthen your weak sides and to become stronger. Riding SS gives you the ULTIMATE workout - it's great both aerobic and anaerobic training, it involves all mscle groups, it improves your balance. What is most important it is allways challenging you: to climb further, to ride more technical trails, to pedal harder, to spin faster. If you like to challenge yourself and to push your self to the limit of your abilities you should love riding SS.
    I think I've become an SS addict. I've got 3 SS's: salsa el mariachi for XC (32/18), giant stp ss for jumping and pumptrack (33/16), giant bowery fixed gear for commuting and road training (48/17). I love all of them!

  35. #535
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    Single speed is fun, different, keeps me interested, new challenges on same terain.

  36. #536
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    I'm a newbie here.
    Just converted my Santa Cruz Highball into a SS., and I now know why gurus here brag so much about SS. The ride is great. I thought the 32-18 gearing was too easy, but it keeps me pumpin all day long up and down the hill at 5km/hr to 30km/hr. I also like the simlicity of all things.

  37. #537
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    I have found that SSing is much more enjoyable then riding my geared fs. I have less that can go wrong, less to fix, less to maintain. I do not have expensive parts on it at all. I am a cheapo and just want a bike that works. I have zero problems keeping up with my group of riders and can assure you that i have just as much fun with a 1/3 of the problems and a 1/3 of the costs they may incur. I know (short of my chain breaking or taco'ing a wheel) that any problems I am having on the trail have to do with me not my bike.

    I still try to grab some air off the spots that can launch me good. I try to hit all the features I can within reason. I might be bombing through the single track but thats just how I ride to keep my flow and momentum for the next nasty climb.

    I know little about the newest and greatest gear and dont need it to enjoy what I have. My steel Surly is the best bang for the buck I have ever spent on a bike, although I do miss my '98 Stumpjumper.
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  38. #538
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    Quote Originally Posted by Igoreha View Post
    Riding SS gives you the ULTIMATE workout - it's great both aerobic and anaerobic training, it involves all mscle groups, it improves your balance.
    Absolutely.

    On my geared bike I used to sit and spin on the flat bits, sit and spin on the long and not so steep climbs, sit and spin up the semi-hard and hard climb, almost never standing up when climbing and only being able to stand and mash for a very short time before being forced to sit down and spin again. My primary use of standing and mashing was to get a short burst of acceleration in order to sit back down and spin again at a slightly higher cadence than before.

    On my ss I sit and spin on the flat bits but since I can't pick a taller gear for more speed I'm slowly improving my max. cadence. I also sit and spin on the long and not so steep climbs, but at a slightly taller gear than I would have picked on my geared bike so I'm building up the power to climb those kind of hills at a higher speed. On the semi-hard and hard climbs I stand and mash. My standing and mashing power and stamina has vastly improved since I started riding ss. I used to only be able to stand and mash for a very short burst, now I can keep going for much longer. Also it makes me use my upper body muscles a lot more.

    All in all, as Igoreha says, ss'ing makes a much more complete workout, I can no longer just keep sitting and spinning but have to work on my standing and mashing, my cadence and my upper body too.

    ..oh and I like the fun!

  39. #539
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    After gradually converting from a roadie to a MTBer and then to a SSer I was having a hard time explaining my fitness improvement at 58. I used to ride 5-7,000 road miles a year often competing with young buddies for bragging rights. Yet in the last 6 months since doing almost all of my riding SS, I was losing weight and my resting heart rate dropped from 42 to 40. I was at a loss to explain this since I didn't seem to be working any harder.
    Then I read a summery of a paper by a Japanese researcher named Tabata. He found that training at max exertion for 20 second bursts with 10 second rests improved fitness way faster than people that did hours more steady state training. Well the places I ride around here provide an average of 20 seconds of intense climbing and 10 seconds of rest on the way down. Obviously, not all hills are exactly 20 seconds; but overall SS provides a Tabata workout. Knowing this, I choose to ride at places that have these 20 second climbs (many of the places around here are 5-10 seconds and a moment to the bottom. This is insightful information as far as I can tell and has improved my fitness more than swimming, running, racquetball and road riding.
    Full rigid SS, Hardtail SS, Hardtail Geared, Full Suspension Geared.

  40. #540
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    I'm 48 and recovering from knee surgery (torn rear lateral medial meniscus) exactly five weeks ago. I was back on the bike in two weeks, rode the brutal climbing on some of our local trails , and about 95% recovered

    Just got fully cleared by my ortho surgeon. The secret to rapid recovery? Singlespeed!

  41. #541
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    Quicksilver

    Just watch the movie called "Quicksilver" starring Kevin Bacon and you'll know why.

  42. #542
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    Singlespeed is just more punk.

  43. #543
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    Because when its f'n freezing out i can wear big thick mitts

  44. #544
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    I got back into riding at the end of last year to get my fitness up and weight down, and going SS is a great way of benchmarking the progress.

    There's this one short, steep hill near the end of my commute home, and because I always tackle it in the same gear I can see just how much stronger I'm getting every week, and know it's not because of gear choices or fine points of cadence, but because I'm mashing it out faster and stronger each time.

  45. #545
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    Hey guys
    Just bought my new SS today after having a cannondale badboy ultra 09' it's hard at the moment but I'm sure I will get use to it, and I sure can feel those quads! Hahah

  46. #546
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    When im riding my geared squishy bike I can't tell if im being lazy or not while climbing, on my SS, If if not trying and being lazy on my SS im not even moving.

    And why ride? To see the looks on the faces of all my buds on their geared bikes when I kill them on all the climbs.

  47. #547
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    took my newly built up 1x1 for my first ever mountain bike ride (singlespeed or otherwise) and really really liked it. Hard work and I had to push a few times but man was it fun. I went out with my buddy riding front sus and 3x8 drivetrain and blazed past him the whole way. Singlespeed mountain biking is quite fun and exciting. I do want to get a larger cog for my rear wheel though.

  48. #548
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    Single Speed riding is like that Prius episode of South Park.

  49. #549
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    couldn't you not use your other gears, why do you need to buy a whole new bike to ride one ratio?

  50. #550
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reillyj View Post
    couldn't you not use your other gears, why do you need to buy a whole new bike to ride one ratio?
    1000 words won't explain it as well as 1 ride will.
    "Knowledge is good." ~ Emil Faber

  51. #551
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reillyj View Post
    couldn't you not use your other gears, why do you need to buy a whole new bike to ride one ratio?
    It's kinda like mountain climbing with or without a safety line. Physically it's exactly the same, you have to make it across the same obstacles, your grip is the same, but mentally there is a HUGE difference.

    Bringing a geared bike and only using one gear means you have a "safety line". If for some reason it gets too tough you have the option to reconsider and start using the gears for an easy way out. If you only have one gear you have no alternatives and if the going gets tough, you have to toughen up too. Physically there are no difference between riding ss with a 32/16 ratio and using a geared bike in 32/16 (except for the tiny bit of added resistance of the rear derailleur), but mentally it's a whole different beast.

  52. #552
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reillyj View Post
    couldn't you not use your other gears, why do you need to buy a whole new bike to ride one ratio?
    take away the choice and you stop thinking about the choice....then start focusing on the ride.

    sit.
    stand.
    push.

    are all the options you have.
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  53. #553
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    Chainline does matter too. When I was trying the SS idea by always staying in 32-16 at a geared bike, it was easy (mentally, for me) not to switch gears. It was then that I realized that even 5 gears is too much. However, the chainline was off. But now on a true SS drivetrain, the chainline is perfect and it feels so, even though ring and cog are 28-14 (and thus slightly less efficient than 32-16).

  54. #554
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    There is something more direct about a single speed drive train. It is probably the chainline or it could be the larger tooth profiles on the rings and cogs. I tried riding in one gear prior to trying SS and it was not as good. I also found that I could use a taller overall gear on a true SS. Also, there is the fact that it is quieter and weighs less too.
    Full rigid SS, Hardtail SS, Hardtail Geared, Full Suspension Geared.

  55. #555
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    Oh, the quietness is something special. I'm running a True Precision Poacher hub and despite its drawbacks (mainly exposed bearings in rare sizes, and mine has one bearing bore slightly oversized due to a CNC error), don't want to go back to hubs that can be heard and hubs that don't engage as fast.

  56. #556
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    I got a single speed mountain bike because I wanted a completely different experience from riding my road bike. I wanted to explore the local parks and trails and just get dirty and eliminate the usual excuses, like extra time cleaning up afterwards. I didn't want any complexity, nothing to get in the way of me just grabbing the bike and going out to have some fun.

    At the back of my mind I was also worried that if I got another bike it could replace my current road bike. With a single speed mountain bike deciding which one to ride on a particular day is fairly straightforward; there is very little overlap. Having said that, maybe at some point I'll add a few gears just as an option, but for now I'm happy with my decision.

  57. #557
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    I like the challenge and simplicity of singlespeed. With 3 young kids and an wife I find I can go ride and not have to spend extra time fixing things.

  58. #558
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cools View Post
    I got a single speed mountain bike because I wanted a completely different experience from riding my road bike. I wanted to explore the local parks and trails and just get dirty and eliminate the usual excuses, like extra time cleaning up afterwards. I didn't want any complexity, nothing to get in the way of me just grabbing the bike and going out to have some fun.

    At the back of my mind I was also worried that if I got another bike it could replace my current road bike. With a single speed mountain bike deciding which one to ride on a particular day is fairly straightforward; there is very little overlap. Having said that, maybe at some point I'll add a few gears just as an option, but for now I'm happy with my decision.
    Hi All....My first post I joined this site after ordering a 'leftover' '12 UNIT 22. Although it's currently inbound to my LBS in Ann Arbor (WIM) Mi, I have to say I bought an SS for the EXACT same reasons. Keeping my road (Cannondale CAAD8 105) in perfect order is no biggie, but the beauty of having an SS to grab-n-go is what I really look forward to this year.

  59. #559
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    A nice side benefit of your SS is the best username on here Have fun!
    Yeah I only carry cans cause I'm a weight weenie.

  60. #560
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    The ability to grab-n-go is priceless all by itself. To improve it, I even quit lubricating chains.. and it's the best decision I made since moving to SS drivetrains.

    Chain wear rate remained the same as before, when I lubed them up as soon as I started to hear them running. I also washed them thoroughly every 3 or 4 lube-ups. It was such a waste of time and it kept me stressed to remember to do that. And finally it's no more!

    Another good thing is that they don't squeak nearly as much as I expected them to. They don't take the quietness out of the ride, in my experience (whereas a good pawl-style hub can ruin it entirely). And there's no more of that gunk that accumulates on drivetrain parts even with dry style lubes! Whenever I get a chain really dusty, I just wash it with water..

    Overall, it's a win-win-win for me.
    Last edited by J. Random Psycho; 03-13-2013 at 04:23 PM.

  61. #561
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    Building SS fat bike from old 2001 trek. Sure I will have plenty of questions and such to come.

  62. #562
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    Quote Originally Posted by J. Random Psycho View Post
    The ability to grab-n-go is priceless all by itself. To improve it, I even quit lubricating chains.. and it's the best decision I made since moving to SS drivetrains.

    Chain wear rate remained the same as before, when I lubed them up as soon as I started to hear them running. I also washed them thoroughly every 3 or 4 lube-ups. It was such a waste of time and it kept me stressed to remember to do that. And finally it's no more!

    Another good thing is that they don't squeak nearly as much as I expected them to. They don't take the quietness out of the ride, in my experience (whereas a good pawl-style hub can ruin it entirely). And there's no more of that gunk that accumulates on drivetrain parts even with dry style lubes! Whenever I get a chain really dusty, I just wash it with water..

    Overall, it's a win-win-win for me.
    I use a product called GIBBS (not in stores) on my road bike chain, mechs and grip shifters (Smith and Wessons too) ...... due to it's ability to penetrate INTO the metal, and still plan to keep lubing my 22" Rigid Unit when the time calls for it.
    2012 KONA UNIT, 22"
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  63. #563
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    I am an aggressive rider and my rigid SS (made by a BMX company) feels like a big BMX bike that I can go for long rides on. My girlfriend is one season new to MTBing. I started her on a rigid SS. It took her longer to really (truly) start enjoying mountain biking because of this, but now the she does, she is a stronger, more agile rider who is not thirsty for upgrades.

  64. #564
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    It's been said already. SS can be quieter, depending; even silent. Wildlife sightings are on a better potential. I reeled in a guy on a long hard climb and passed him quickly. He didn't hear me coming. Except for salutations, he didn't hear me go either.

  65. #565
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    SS is more about me, than the equipment. Equipment is cool, bling is nice, etc. etc., but at the end of the day on my SS..."I" did it. I like that.
    I'm having more FUN than anybody!

  66. #566
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    so you really don't need to lube chains on SS? Just took mine off and lubed it. With a dry lube. Maybe I'll let all that get worn off, and just let it go. Washing occasionally.

    Reason I pulled it was because it was getting crunchy. Had some mud get in the drivetrain and was worried about premature wear. Guess a quick scrub would have done just as well?
    SS ==> Nut up or Shut up!

  67. #567
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    Well I still don't lubricate, and try to run them clean. ) When a chain becomes crunchy from mud or dust, I take it off and wash with water. Would have pressure washed if I had the device.

    In the winter, with all those road salts, plain water seems to be insufficient and I boil the chain with some washing machine detergent. A stainless chain works better for this.

    But SS-specific chains, unlike 8-speed ones, don't seem to be expected by designers to run dry. They have tighter tolerances between side plates and may attempt to bind at some links. I just flex those links forcibly to loosen them. This is bearable with KMC Z610HX and non-detectable with KMC X1 (I even run it on 24-20 Hammerschmidt gear without any issues).

    The one chain that I failed to run dry, while maintaining remnants of sanity, is Wippermann 7R8. It binds fiercely when dry, and emits a lot of screeching.

    If I could not get Z610HX to run freely, I'd just use SRAM PC-890. Expected good life from KMC X1, but it's on par with everything else, 6 months, either lubed/maintained or dry/clean.


    (And my chainline is 50 mm on 2 bikes, to about 0.2 mm measurement error, both ends, which I measured many times over.)

  68. #568
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    I'll be joining the SS Club in a few days. I just ordered my first, a Gravity G29,...I'm expecting simplicity & stress relief. I just started really riding bikes again last year, and my geared bikes are a friggin' PITA!!! I sold a folder, I have a Puma Nevis 8 speed (the most reliable), and a Lombardo Power2000 21 speed that has been a headache from day 1!!! And I first purchased a comfort bike (what a stupid mistake!!!), a schwinn voyageur ig3. Even THAT was annoying. You need to stop pedaling to shift,...not for meh!!!

    Anyways, I'm awaiting my new G29, and I'm expecting to finally ride & ENJOY myself.

  69. #569
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    Would anyone agree that falling isnt such a bad thing on a singlespeed?

    When you have a rear mech and about to fall the only thing I can think about is "nooooooooooo my derailuer hanger ****!!!".

    I really want to try a ss and the fact that I can moderatly wipe out and not worry about somthing like that makes it more feasible to any disadvantage of not being able to shift.

  70. #570
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    I have broken a derailleur hanger just by riding and getting a stick caught in the spokes and had to walk out. It wasn't long after that, I started to SS almost exclusively. When I am falling, I generally think about body parts, not the bike.
    Full rigid SS, Hardtail SS, Hardtail Geared, Full Suspension Geared.

  71. #571
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    I've noticed a significant difference in the drag if the chain is not lubed. That's with my road commuter SS Band wagon.

    I wash my bikes maybe once in 1-2 months. I lube them also and check the pressure. Of course I do those if needed.

    This morning I just sprayed lube on Band wagon chain and get going to work. Major difference.
    -16 Moulton TSR2 (Automatix)
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  72. #572
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    Quote Originally Posted by tds101 View Post
    ...Even THAT was annoying. You need to stop pedaling to shift,...not for meh!!!
    Yep what's wrong there is the stopping and the shifting.

    toot334455:
    I really want to try a ss and the fact that I can moderatly wipe out and not worry about somthing like that makes it more feasible to any disadvantage of not being able to shift.
    Not being able to shift is an advantage.
    -16 Moulton TSR2 (Automatix)
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  73. #573
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    Update: non-lubricated KMC Z610 HX still doesn't run as easily as a non-lubricated 8-speed chain.

  74. #574
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    I built my first SS ten years ago and I still can't give a coherent answer as to why I ride them. Just to be fair I will occasionally ride a buddy's high zoot $xxxx.xx dollar FS rig and my little inner voice just says "uh......no".
    It's all about the mo.

  75. #575
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    Interesting to revisit this thread.

    Since I was here last I went from SS to an Alfine 8, thinking that such a heavy, versatile bike (Surly Ogre) is wasted on a single ratio. Now I'm going back to SS!

    Having gears is convenient, I guess, but the more I rode the more I just sat at about seventy gear inches and mashed up hills.

  76. #576
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    I'm developing a love-hate relationship with my SS. I love it when I'm out on a trail but when I'm riding pavement to and from my destination I start getting doubt: maybe I should get a higher gear ratio, maybe I should've gone geared?

    I know it's all my fault. I don't have a car right now and in general just love riding and exploring. Sometimes a mountain bike makes more sense for that than my geared road bike as I'm more likely to go further when the path gets rough. But yeah, long boring stretches of pavement can make me crazy sometimes...

    Maybe the solution is to get another bike... Oh dear...

  77. #577
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    Cools, it's possible to do a 2 gear ratio SS bike (dinglespeed) where you manually set the chain to either of gears, and required chain length is the same for both. It takes 2 chainrings in front and something like White Industries ENO DOS in the rear.

    White industries DOS ENO freewheel

  78. #578
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    Hmm... I remember reading about that. Thanks for remind me! I'm guessing I can replace the bash-guard with a larger ring and I can already fit more than 1 cog on the rear hub (Sun Ringlé Dirty Flea SS).

  79. #579
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    You probably need a taller gear, but let me elaborate on the dinglespeed. I have one bike set up with 32-34 in front and 20-18 in back (29er with a 26er you would want 2 less teeth on the rears or 1 more on the fronts to be equal). You have to set the chain tension on the big ring because it will always be less on the smaller ring (more chain wrap on the 34-18 than on the 32-20). Also, since there is less tension on the smaller ring, make sure it is a true SS ring like a Niner or Surley with the large tooth profile. Otherwise, as it wears just a little it will derail on hard efforts. All you have to do to change ratios is loosen the rear qr and drop the wheel about 3/4 inch and back pedal the chain to the right rings and then let the bike drop back onto the axle and tighten the QR and you are on your way. I use this as a Spring bike since by the middle of the season I am riding 34-18 in the woods. I can start out on the low gear and do several laps and then switch to the tall gear for the last lap. That gets me in shape for my other bikes. Also, use it when camping and use the tall gear around the roads and the low gear in the woods if it is muddy or early season.
    Full rigid SS, Hardtail SS, Hardtail Geared, Full Suspension Geared.

  80. #580
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    Was asked this exact question on tonight's ride. My reply: "Because I like it".

    Despite my answer upthread, that sums it up for me.
    If you need me I'll be at the bar

  81. #581
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    Well from going from bmx in my teens, to a geared mtb and then to a ss mtb. I feel very at home with the ss mtb, gears just don't make sense to me for my idea of mountain riding. I always had an issue with my geared mtb, something to tweak something to fix. Ive had this ss for almost 3 weeks now and I've beaten it almost every day rain or shine. Not one problem, and this is on a cheapo gravity rigid fork with a brake upgrade.

    Sure, the ss kicks my ass..I imagine as I get more and more accustomed to it and how to utilize my power more efficiently it will be unbeatable for me. I plow by geared riders, though im definitely working harder.

    Cant say I would like a ss road bike though, seems far too limited for speed. I love trying to keep up with cars. I also dont have the issue of parts failing on my 1990 giant quasar, its a heavy and bullet proof and doesnt deal with pesky rocks and sticks getting places they shouldn't.

  82. #582
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    I'll chime in on this thread. For me, what what I love about riding a SS is that it takes me back to my childhood years of just riding a bike to have fun. I grew up riding BMX bikes in the 70's, and I rode them everywhere - trails, race tracks, to school, on family camping trips. I practically lived on my bike. The bikes were simple and a blast to ride. Fast forward to my mid-40's and I find myself seeking the same kind of simple enjoyment on a bike. Nothing to break, nothing to adjust, nothing clanking around - just pedal to your heart's content with one gear. I got sick of riding the same trails around here on geared bikes, but a SS makes them fun again. I've owned everything from 50 lb. DH bikes to ultralight XC race bikes and everything in between, but nothing puts a grin on my face like riding a SS bike. In fact, it's time to stop waxing poetic and go riding!

  83. #583
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    Because... I ride mostly by myself, and gears makes it too easy. A little suffering is a good thing. It will make you 1) climb better 2) brake less 3) find smoother lines 4) pump more - use your body.

    Anything to keep the momentum. It will make you a better rider.

  84. #584
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    Since I went to riding SS exclusively I have noticed that now I choose going for a ride over having sex about 9 times out of 10, with gears it was more like 50-50. More fun with my baggies on..

  85. #585
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    I have a very nice (but flat) forest near me. In the past I took the car and rode 70 - 100kms south to get some hills with my geared bike.

    Now I just step on the single speed and find myself having serious fun 5k from home on terain that was boring as hell on the geared bike.

    Sent from my HTC One X using Tapatalk 4

  86. #586
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    What's with all the hate from the Full Suspension guys these days? I ride a Niner One9 Rigid Singlespeed on trails most guys won't ride without a FS bike. It just drives me crazy hearing about it all the time. I do love getting out there and hauling up the hills while the FS guys are spinning away at 0.0035 MPH up hill. I love my rigid SS. I may change out to a shock fork one day. A good friend of mine just doesn't get it and continues to doubt why I love riding SS. I can't wait for the day he finally moves out here to Oregon so I can show him how great SS bikes are.

  87. #587
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    When I got a single speed i never took the Heckler out again.. I always had more fun on the Redline. Now I have a geared pugs - but the lure of turning it into a single speed is very strong...

    For me the thing I like best is No slopy shifting. I hate it when I shift and do not get instant feedback. I have had the Dinglespeed - and used the 42 X 16 on the road and the 32 X 21 in the dirt. Good stuff.
    My bike is heavier than yours - it does not have Carbon or Titanium parts - I love it!

  88. #588
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    I'm hooked. Riding partner turned me on to SS. I picked up a slightly used Kona unit this week despite never riding a SS. Whole different dynamic to my rigid 26". I can honestly say I had a lot more fun today and worked harder while doing it.

  89. #589
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    Going SS only is the best thing i ever did. Sold all my geared gear! Never looked back

  90. #590
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    In the process of selling the geared parts here too.. would build a narrow freehub 1x7 on Shimano 10-speed rear, narrow-wide teeth ring front anyway these days if I was really interested in a geared bike.

  91. #591
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weinerts View Post
    When I got a single speed i never took the Heckler out again.. I always had more fun on the Redline. Now I have a geared pugs - but the lure of turning it into a single speed is very strong...

    For me the thing I like best is No slopy shifting. I hate it when I shift and do not get instant feedback. I have had the Dinglespeed - and used the 42 X 16 on the road and the 32 X 21 in the dirt. Good stuff.
    ss the heckler.
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  92. #592
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    here's a little blog post I wrote about the performance benefits of riding SS compared to a power meter for road riding, with a dash of humor thrown in. I may have used a few four and five letter words while writing this and a lot of it is basic stuff pretty much anyone who has ridden SS knows...but hey, check it out anyway. Share it with your friends who don't SS and want to get faster and be better riders, call me names in the comments section, whatever.

    Suffering, Sweating, and Smiling: Confessions of an Ultra-Endurance Cyclist: Singlespeed Mountain Biking: Like a Power Meter, Except Rad

  93. #593
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    why do I ride a SS? It's fun. It's quiet. It's easy to maintain. It tears up the trails here in the Pisgah National Forest...Not quite like my big old dual suss USED to, but in it's own way. It makes me feel like I've had to work for a ride. It tears at my lungs on a big climb ride. It ridicules me when I'm having an "off" day. It rewards me when I'm in the zone. And it never fails to kick my a$$, regardless of what kind of shape I'm in. I don't ride to prove anything. I don't ride to be the next KOM on strava. I ride to enjoy it. And my SS always brings a smile to my face. Beer seems to taste better after a long ride on the SS. Sometimes in the middle of a long ride. Even my wife can tell when I've been riding the SS exclusively. I'm no spring chicken, but it does really increase my fitness... Probably because I can't wait to get back out on it again...and just RIDE!!!

  94. #594
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    I trail rode a SS for the first time today and I liked it. It wasn't the longest ride, but it was fairly proper and the bike wasn't exactly a perfect fit. But to paraphrase a friend of mine: "it was kinda like stroking left handed- awkward, but still very enjoyable".

  95. #595
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmc1171 View Post
    "it was kinda like stroking left handed- awkward, but still very enjoyable".
    Well, my personal experience tells SS vs geared is more different than that..
    26" rigid SS 4130 BB7 nylon-flats ESI latex-tubes non-lubricated-8spd

  96. #596
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    "Why does Rice play Texas?"

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ateh7hnEnik
    My other bike is a /7.

  97. #597
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    For me its all about a inexpensive, simple, quiet challenge.

    I find that once i get my bike dialed in for whatever the latest upgrade, experiment, or bling addition I don't have to touch it. no adjusting shifters, checking for gear wear, checking shock pressure or seals, etc. It is just riding.
    My current bike is a PIG (a Dawes bullseye from bikesdirect.com) but i have maybe 5000 miles on it, lots of that is commuting along dirt paths and into down town LA, but i have crashed it a fair amount on my local single tracks and been hit by cars with ZREO damage except for a popped tire.

    Sure its 27 lbs and is a bit of a bear on the climbs but i'm into it for less then a complete entry level specialized 29er (Crave SL or even a converted rockhopper) by a big number and WAY less then the SIR 9 I covet and I have a bike that is has a nice custom look and that I have had the joy of seeking out the best deal on high end parts and installing myself.

    There is little to no chain noise, just the sound of the dirt crunching beneath the tires (or the insane traffic). You really get into your surroundings and enjoy the trail a lot more i find. I don't ever think about if I am in the right gear for the climb ahead, because i clearly am, or have any loss of power because i'm mid shift. I have never lost a chain on my SS either. It increases you focus on where you are riding and your own body (breathing, cadence etc).

    But Really It makes me feel like a kid again. And I guess that is the best part of all. I don't worry about it for any reason Like i would a more fancy, complicated, expensive rig... I just ride my bike.

  98. #598
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    I live in a very flat area here on the coast of NC and grew up riding bmx and single speed cruisers mostly on and around the beach so it was nothing new for me, reliability, simplicity and confidence on a single speed is what propels me to ride one. Challenges are fresh and new every ride.
    If your seat post is sticking out of your frame further then 6 inches, you need a bigger bike.

  99. #599
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    ....because it is my constitutional right.

  100. #600
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    Why singlespeed? (Also see the SS FAQ - Stickied at top of thread list)

    Quote Originally Posted by jdac85 View Post
    For me its all about a inexpensive, simple, quiet challenge.

    I find that once i get my bike dialed in for whatever the latest upgrade, experiment, or bling addition I don't have to touch it. no adjusting shifters, checking for gear wear, checking shock pressure or seals, etc. It is just riding.



    There is little to no chain noise, just the sound of the dirt crunching beneath the tires (or the insane traffic). You really get into your surroundings and enjoy the trail a lot more i find. I don't ever think about if I am in the right gear for the climb ahead, because i clearly am, or have any loss of power because i'm mid shift. I have never lost a chain on my SS either. It increases you focus on where you are riding and your own body (breathing, cadence etc).

    But Really It makes me feel like a kid again. And I guess that is the best part of all. I don't worry about it for any reason Like i would a more fancy, complicated, expensive rig... I just ride my bike.
    This

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