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  1. #1
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    First single speed

    So I am thinking about getting my very first single speed bike. I have test ridden 2 so far, both were borrowed from friends and I had a lot of fun so I think I like the concept. Now I need to decide what to buy...both bikes I tried were 29s but I don't think I want a 29er. I am short at 5'-2" and both bikes seemed big and awkward. I also did a test ride of a 650b and I liked it a lot more (it was not SS). So I think I want a 650b SS but not positive. So anyway any thoughts or recommendations?

  2. #2
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    This summer I had my Ibis Tranny built up as a SS and it's a 26er. I also have a 29er dualie (which I ride most of the time) and a 29er hardtail geared mainly for racing. I don't ride my single speed a ton... the terrain around my house is pretty rocky and technical, but I haven't noticed a huge difference between wheel size on the "buffer" trails I've ridden it on. The other consideration is that you will ride a SS much different than a geared bike and that certainly can change your perspective.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by catsruletn View Post
    So I am thinking about getting my very first single speed bike. I have test ridden 2 so far, both were borrowed from friends and I had a lot of fun so I think I like the concept. Now I need to decide what to buy...both bikes I tried were 29s but I don't think I want a 29er. I am short at 5'-2" and both bikes seemed big and awkward. I also did a test ride of a 650b and I liked it a lot more (it was not SS). So I think I want a 650b SS but not positive. So anyway any thoughts or recommendations?
    Stick with a wheel size yer comfortable with. I like 26" wheels, and I'm happy on them. So I'm sticking with them, one or many gears.

    I have two bikes: a AM bike (2x10 gearing, 32/24 with 11/36 cassette) and a DJ (single speed 25x12). My AM bike is designed to be pedaled in either chainring.

    But the DJ, which I don't ride on the trails (but I still need to pedal it), was much much harder to find the gearing. I like "spinny" gears, because it's easy to get the torque up. So I replaced the MTB cranks with a BMX crankset, which gives you LOTS of options for chainrings of all sorts of random sizes you would never expect. I think I went through a ridiculous amount of standard mountain bike chainrings and single speed cogs on my DJ (which I spend less time on than my AM bike) finding the right gears.

    After I settled on the 25/12 on the DJ, I'm pretty happy with it. It's not hard on the knees, easy to sprint, and doesn't spin out too easily. I would happily take it on the trails if it wasn't setup for the BMX track.

    So if you're going to do a single speed, no matter what size wheels, look into BMX cranksets and see if they'll fit on your SS. That will give you a lot more options for chainrings and it might make SSing more intriguing with playing with non-standard gears.

    Good luck with what you decide! Can't wait to read about it

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