Anyone go from geared to SS then back to gears, then back to SS but this time fully r- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Anyone go from geared to SS then back to gears, then back to SS but this time fully r

    I mean, surely


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  2. #2
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    I went SS, bought a drivetrain, then sold the drivetrain at a loss and stayed SS because I couldn't bring myself to put gears back on.

    I just sold my last geared bike and I'm building up.... another SS. The addiction is real.
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  3. #3
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    My two mountain bikes are ss. That said, I maybe converting one to a 4 speed if I can't get my lazy ass back into shape.

  4. #4
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    I've gone SS geared SS geared SS geared

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  5. #5
    Daniel the Dog
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    I hate my SS on some rides and love it on others. I ride geared and SS depending on the day.

  6. #6
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    Let's see...

    SS rigid + geared FS (2007?)
    SS suspended + geared FS
    SS suspended
    geared soft tail [knee injury]
    SS soft tail
    SS rigid (2011)
    SS rigid + geared hard tail
    SS rigid + SS hard tail
    SS rigid
    SS rigid + geared FS (2016)

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  7. #7
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    I have gears on some bikes. Hubgears.

    I can see the point of derailleurs are ok for road bikes. Those tend to be a fashion item, so a durable transmission that has the potential to last a lifetime isn't needed.

    For off road though, the rule is anything that dangles, tangles.
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  8. #8
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    I am cutting out the middle part and starting on SS. I've demoed a ton of bikes, mostly geared, but the last one I tried was an SS. The 960ft climb kicked my ass (which I kind of like), and I loved every thing about the ride. This was on a 27.5+ steel ht.

    Put the deposit down on my new build (SS) the next week

  9. #9
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    I am cutting out the middle part and starting on SS. I've demoed a ton of bikes, mostly geared, but the last one I tried was an SS. The 960ft climb kicked my ass (which I kind of like), and I loved every thing about the ride. This was on a 27.5+ steel ht.

    Put the deposit down on my new build (SS) the next week

    Which 27+ steel ht was it?
    Last edited by djembe975; 11-01-2016 at 05:44 PM.

  10. #10
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    I've been riding my new Farley 7 geared to figure out what SS gearing I want to put on it. I hadn't ridden a geared mountain bike for almost ten years.

    My last ride confirmed once again that I hate gears.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by djembe975 View Post


    Which 27+ steel ht was it?
    Reeb Dikylous. Nice rig, and good looking. They make a Ti version, but Ti was a bit too noodly for me.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by charlatan View Post
    Reeb Dikylous. Nice rig, and good looking. They make a Ti version, but Ti was a bit too noodly for me.
    Which bike did you end up ordering? Last I read you were leaning towards a Fatillac. Would need a tensioner to run SS.
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  13. #13
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    I have one bike. when I know I am going to be riding certain trails that have tons of gnarly stuff or longer distances or riding with fast groups, I put my 1x10 setup on it. it takes a few minutes to swap my spacers and cog for a 10 speed cassette, switch the chain, and attach the derailleur and shifter to my bike. it stays SS most of the time though.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaybo View Post
    I hate my SS on some rides and love it on others. I ride geared and SS depending on the day.
    I have an idea that gears are useful, but in practice, I have never been upset on a SS bike. Not once have I ever left the house and said "Man, I wish I had some gears..."

    It only took me 10 months to figure that out. If it feels good, keep doing it!
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by BmoreKen View Post
    Anyone go from geared to SS then back to gears, then back to SS but this time fully r


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    Yup. This exactly. Both geared and ss since the 80's but strictly FS trail bike for the last 4 years I've ridden that FS bike once since May when I got my Superfly ss. I don't anticipate anything changing soon. Gonna sell the FS bike.

  16. #16
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    ss @4y/o, gears, then ss again, now gears. Don't think I'll be going back to ss, I can see the appeal but it's not for me.


    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    I can see the point of derailleurs are ok for road bikes. Those tend to be a fashion item, so a durable transmission that has the potential to last a lifetime isn't needed.

    For off road though, the rule is anything that dangles, tangles.

    Depends on a lot of things I suppose, 35 years riding off-road and I've yet to damage one.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by buell View Post
    Which bike did you end up ordering? Last I read you were leaning towards a Fatillac. Would need a tensioner to run SS.
    Going with a custom from Oddity bikes. Going to be a bit before I get it, but I am confident it'll be worth it! Next up is whether I go chain or belt and getting the fork figured out

  18. #18
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    hm, I ride SS for the last three years. my local trail are mostly hilly with short climbs, nothing really mountainous. normally when the cold days come I adopt my riding style and choose trails and paths which require less intensity to avoid too many sweating and getting cold. or cheating choosing to ride me retro-fitted full-rigid 26er with its 1x10 drivetrain. however, the last several rides lead to some more-challenging trails with a new riding partner (I usually ride solo) who ride a geared FS. I rode my SS, all was nice and good, till the latest ride yesterday, when the I totally lost me confidence in my SS riding. somehow it felt way to hard to maintain momentum, almost any climb felt bad. I am so confused that I can't help keeping thinking of putting gears back to my SS bike at least for the cold months.

  19. #19
    eric.nm
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    Charlatan:
    What year REEB Dikyelous? What size 27.5 plus tire on what rim? I'd love to know if I could convert my REEB without buying a new wheelset first!
    Thx for the info!
    Eric

  20. #20
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    I started on gears, switched to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS, switched back to gears, switched back to SS.

    I may have missed one or two switches there. Right now one SS mountain bike is setup with gears, my other SS mountain bike is setup SS, my geared road bike has an eccentric sitting on the desk waiting for install to switch to SS. I generally find I enjoy riding SS more than gears, but I like to tinker too and if I had to chose between not riding or riding gears, I'd ride gears.

  21. #21
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    I went from geared, to single speed then bought another geared bike, then 3 more single speed bikes, then sold the geared bikes, then sold 2 single speed bikes, then bought another geared bike, then sold a single speed bike... somehow I ended up with 2 geared bikes and 2 single speed bikes? My 2 single speeds get more use than my 2 geared bikes.

  22. #22
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    Haven't bounced back and forth as of yet---went from gears to strictly SS and have stayed there (both MTB and road). I love it. Haven't ridden a geared bike in about 4 years.
    Funny though just today as I was doing one of my usual killer climbs, standing up and powering my way up the hill as usual---I wondered how would I do on a geared bike now on that same climb, going back to a "sit and spin" approach? I've been building some pretty darn good SS climbing prowess these 4 years--I wonder how that strength and ability would translate to sitting and spinning(which I never really liked anyway, but just . . .curious). I guess I could borrow a geared bike and try it and, . . . . . nah, never mind....

  23. #23
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    I've had a geared and singlespeed for the past 13 years, and I'll ride the SS almost exclusively in the winter. The more I ride it, the more I assume I'm a lot faster with gears and the climbs easier.

    Fact is, when I get back on my geared, I'm really not that faster. Sure, it's a tad easier but really when climbing, it's not that much easier. I live at 3,200 feet and the trails in Western N.C. have a lot of elevation gain.

    Only thing that keeps me from ditching my 1x10 is my age (54). I'm afraid when I get a little older, I might need to slow down and rely on gears to maintain my enjoyment of the sport.

    I guess we'll see.
    Last edited by D-Yob; 01-24-2017 at 04:36 PM.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by D-Yob View Post
    I've had a geared and singlespeed for the past 13 years, and I'll ride the SS almost exclusively in the winter. The more I ride it, the more I assume I'm a lot faster with gears and the climbs easier.

    Fact is, when I get back on my geared, I'm really not that faster. Sure, it's a tad easier but really when climbing, it's not that much easier. I live at 3,200 feet and the trails in Western N.C. are have a lot of elevation gain.

    Only thing that keeps me from ditching my 1x10 is my age (54). I'm afraid when I get a little older, I might need to slow down and rely on gears to maintain my enjoyment of the sport.

    I guess we'll see.
    I have a couple years on you--will be 57 in May. Also quite a bit of climbing where I live. In my case, I had some knee and hip pain from sitting and spinning up hills on geared bikes when I used to ride them several years ago. I have none of that with singlespeed, standing and climbing. I attribute it to being a more "natural" movement for one's body.
    Honestly I think I'd rather walk my ss up when I run out of momentum on a climb then sit and spin a granny gear.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbass View Post
    I have a couple years on you--will be 57 in May. Also quite a bit of climbing where I live. In my case, I had some knee and hip pain from sitting and spinning up hills on geared bikes when I used to ride them several years ago. I have none of that with singlespeed, standing and climbing. I attribute it to being a more "natural" movement for one's body.
    Honestly I think I'd rather walk my ss up when I run out of momentum on a climb then sit and spin a granny gear.
    Yeah, I've had the exact same issue! I feel much better after pounding up a steep climb waiting for my head to explode than spinning my legs to the point I get a weak/sick feeling in the hips. But I have found the sit and spin (even though it maybe counter logic) is yet another skill to develop. I plan to race my geared Air 9 this year, but try to do most riding SS. I have a loop with crazy steep in it, so my plan is to spin those out once every couple of weeks just to keep the muscle memory for that kind of effort. I think if you don't get out a lot, SS is a much healthier way to ride.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by slohr View Post
    I think if you don't get out a lot, SS is a much healthier way to ride.
    I think it's the opposite, unless you get out regularly and take the time to develop into it ss can potentially do bodily damage whereas gears can allow a person to ease into their fitness zone, at least that's been my personal experience.

    Also, why not hammer hills out of the saddle ss style on your Air 9? That's what I do when the mood strikes me. You're not required to sit & spin with gears, especially on a hardtail.
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  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by slohr View Post
    Yeah, I've had the exact same issue! I feel much better after pounding up a steep climb waiting for my head to explode than spinning my legs to the point I get a weak/sick feeling in the hips. But I have found the sit and spin (even though it maybe counter logic) is yet another skill to develop. I plan to race my geared Air 9 this year, but try to do most riding SS. I have a loop with crazy steep in it, so my plan is to spin those out once every couple of weeks just to keep the muscle memory for that kind of effort. I think if you don't get out a lot, SS is a much healthier way to ride.
    I hear ya. I ride about 4 times a week, but these are usually 30 mi or less each ride. Sometimes WAY less depending on the climbing (I roll out my front door and I'm looking at a mountain, so I don't have many truly "easy" rides nearby!)
    I'm starting to get myself geared up for some bikepacking/touring and while I intend to start out doing it SS, that may be the thing that gets me back to owning a geared bike again

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I think it's the opposite, unless you get out regularly and take the time to develop into it ss can potentially do bodily damage whereas gears can allow a person to ease into their fitness zone, at least that's been my personal experience.

    Also, why not hammer hills out of the saddle ss style on your Air 9? That's what I do when the mood strikes me. You're not required to sit & spin with gears, especially on a hardtail.

    I guess I should have qualified that a little more. After I have some base work in a climbing (mainly on the road this time of year), I'll go to the SS. I actually do ride that way on the Air 9, but the climbs here can be very steep, and fairly long. I don't do the SS on those in that direction. Plus, it's a different mindset riding the rigid SS. Have to concentrate on good lines, measure your effort over time... all that good stuff...

  29. #29
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    Converted my HT to SS from 1x10 a year ago, and just switched back to 1x10. Has its pluses and minuses. Rode with gears yesterday, and was right that I could have used SRAM's DH 1x7 drivetrain, instead. Not used to climbing seated, so the lowest gears, which I thought would make it so easy, had my front end wandering around and couldn't keep momentum or power over uphill features. Even though I smoked my legs early using 32/13 and 15 where the going was easier, I ended up using 24 or 28T for longer climbs. Whenever I calmed down on the flowy trails, or wanted to climb out of the saddle, I found myself right back in the 32/19 that I'm used to.
    When it was over, my butt was feeling it more than usual, but my legs bounced back quicker(test rode bikes at a LBS, afterwards).
    The big surprise after doing 24 miles of familiar trails was that my overall times were about the same.
    I can see swapping back and forth over time, but think I'll stick with gears for awhile, because of where I ride and only having one mtb. If I add a geared FS bike later, the hardtail will probably go back to SS permanently, though.

  30. #30
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    I prefer my gears and just ride it like a single speed leaving me tons of gearing options if I need them. I do love my single speed full rigid 26er however. It makes me a way better rider so I alternate between the two frequently.

  31. #31
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    I have a SS Niner Air9c and a 2x10 5" full suspension Yeti which I seem to ride both depending on who I ride with or time of year. I also ride a SS road bike to commute to work at times and a standard road bike. I seem to go back and forth on which ones I love and hate and love to hate. Thats why we all need to ride whatever we can whenever we can as long as we ride, ride & ride!!! :-)
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  32. #32
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    That's me in a nutshell -- hammering a bigger gear on the 1x10 hardtail because I'm used to it from SS riding -- but I wonder if racing that way is inefficient. I do sit and spin to conserve, but it's not my preferred way to ride/race. Technical trails I clean regularly on the SS I sometimes bobble on the 1x10 because I'm trying to finesse it, all in the name of better efficiency.

    Anyone else experience this?

  33. #33
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    I have been dabbling in SS for over a year. First started out by leaving my geared HT in SS ratio and just leaving it there. I learned alot and develop doing it that way. I reserved it more for the smoother rides or the more level ones. I did not try steep and rocky SS. Late last year I pulled together a proper SS frame in 26" started doing it right. Then finally bought a proper SS 29er frame. So now I have gear HT, SS HT and 27.5" 5" Trail bike. I still ride all 3, but I will say the SS is getting alot of use lately. I am a stronger geared rider due to my time on SS. There is a different technique to ride SS especially in the technical stuff. Some ways harder since momentum and line choice are even more critical, but some ways easier since you never in the "wrong gear" for a climb either. Some tech features are better climbed in taller gear vs spinny one. On SS you have one option so you just need to make it work. With gears you can be trying to spin up it vs standing and that can cause issues.

    Overall I am happy with both bikes. The best part is knowing what I can ride SS it means big climbs are "easy" geared now. For now I have no intentions of going SS only, but having two nice HT bikes I can choose from is really nice. The 5" trail bike still will ride stuff I would rather not ride on a HT so I am not getting rid of that even when 7 of 10 rides I choose a HT. So far SS has been mostly for shorter rides, but I did bring the SS for three rides I would have normally brought the geared bike (2 shorter distance rocky/techy rides and 1 100 mile mostly smooth trail ride). This because the geared bike needed some maintenance. The SS did much better than I expected. Maybe in 6 months my tune will change. Saturday I am doing race on the SS and sunday considering a 60 mile ride on SS. Will be some steep climbs and mixed terrain. First though was the geared bike, but considering my options as well. I know it will be more painful on the SS, but I hope be stronger for it.
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by D-Yob View Post
    That's me in a nutshell -- hammering a bigger gear on the 1x10 hardtail because I'm used to it from SS riding -- but I wonder if racing that way is inefficient. I do sit and spin to conserve, but it's not my preferred way to ride/race. Technical trails I clean regularly on the SS I sometimes bobble on the 1x10 because I'm trying to finesse it, all in the name of better efficiency.

    Anyone else experience this?
    Oh yeah, definitely. I've bobbled and dabbed techie sections on the geared HT that I would clean on the SS due to that spinning in a lower gear and relying on balance and finesse rather than bashing through. Some friends purposefully session technical bits at both slow and fast speeds in order to keeps those low speed/high cadence skills sharp.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by D-Yob View Post
    That's me in a nutshell -- hammering a bigger gear on the 1x10 hardtail because I'm used to it from SS riding -- but I wonder if racing that way is inefficient. I do sit and spin to conserve, but it's not my preferred way to ride/race. Technical trails I clean regularly on the SS I sometimes bobble on the 1x10 because I'm trying to finesse it, all in the name of better efficiency.

    Anyone else experience this?
    Yep, I think I concentrate on energy conservation too much when I race the geared bike, and try to finesse too much--probably losing more momentum and using more energy.

  36. #36
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    If I'm going to be riding with a very fast group or a lot of fire roads, I'll take the geared bike. I also ride it more getting into shape.

    Everything else SS.

  37. #37
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    Got back into MTB 5 months ago after a 15 year break raising kids and finding other activities. Fell back into MTB fast and hard. 2-3 rides a week. I rode the old 1999 Canondale F600 26er HT the first few rides then tried a buddy's Trek Stache 29+ HT. The Stache blew me away how far bikes have come in 15 years. Went out and bought The Stache and then started reading up on riding SS. The simple pure nature of the SS lured me. I find the reasoning behind such a bike just as interesting as the bike itself. So without even riding an SS I bought a Superfly SS. I heard it would be awkward and punishing the first few rides and I'd be reaching for gears. I found none of that. I wanted a bike as far from the plush cushy magic carpet ride of the Stache and a Rigid SS was the answer. First ride was a 26 mile solo ride New Years Day and the SS was intense in an awesome sense. Felt right at home and didn't want to stop. Had a few Strava PR's on climbs and tight flat segments that first ride. Enjoying the simplicity, light weight, and how easy it is to throw the SS around.
    So getting on topic, I now switch between The Stache and the SS depending on the ride. If I'm riding solo it's SS. If it's a group ride it's The Stache. I find I can't ride the SS with a geared group ride. I leave them on the climbs and run out of gear on the long fast flats. And I'm not as fast (yet) on the long technical staircase downhills on the Rigid SS. So for now it's the best of both worlds.

  38. #38
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    I've got a rigid SS ( Singular Hummingbird) and a FS (Liteville 301). I'd say that I ride the SS more, maybe a 60/40 ratio.
    Because they're so different I think that they actually complement each other, as very different techniques come into play - spds on the SS, flats on the FS, loads of out of the saddle stuff on the SS, more in the saddle techy climbing on the Liteville.

    I believe that (for me, at least) it's good to ride two radically different bikes - it forces me to work on technique, uses muscles differently and opens my eyes to the strengths and weaknesses of each bike.

    What they do have in common is that they're slightly "left field" and not everyone's cup of tea and that they're both geared pretty low, because we have lots of steep, difficult climbing atound here and I prefer walking to carrying. I'm not bothered about out and out speed on the rare bits of flat, or on the road.
    Gearing to suit those conditions is like having a 280 Beta or something and gearing it to cruise on the road at 70mph.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by D-Yob View Post
    Technical trails I clean regularly on the SS I sometimes bobble on the 1x10 because I'm trying to finesse it, all in the name of better efficiency.

    Anyone else experience this?
    Yes!

  40. #40
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    I converted my HT 29er to SS for about 6 months but with vertical drop outs and me at 225 lbs. the 2 different tensioners I used just couldn't hold up. I even broke 2 different chains. I went back to gears on that bike but used the cog and spacers to convert my old '90s Trek steel rigid 26er to SS since it had semi-horizontal drop outs. No tensioner was needed and that bike is a blast. Singlespeeding did make me learn skills that has really helped my overall riding abilities. I've often thought about buying a SS 29er frame but I'm perfectly happy with the 26er. And, yes, I do worry about snapping my derailleur on my other bikes.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by eric.nm View Post
    Charlatan:
    What year REEB Dikyelous? What size 27.5 plus tire on what rim? I'd love to know if I could convert my REEB without buying a new wheelset first!
    Thx for the info!
    Eric
    Sorry, I completely missed this post. I will have to call up there and find out the specs of the bike I rode (wheel set that is). I will update tomorrow if I get a chance to call them.

  42. #42
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    I've been a dedication SS only rider for 2 years. Fully rigid and on both my rigs. I'm considering getting a Fox float but have been tempted to just go back to gears and get a Long Slacker 29 full suspension. Or a slack HT with gears, like a Honzo or Canfield. Either way it's going back to gears.
    The simple answer would be to just put a Fox on one of my SS.
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  43. #43
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    Kind of.

    -Started mtb'ing geared (2003)
    -Went SS (2007) and rode SS exclusively for years.
    -Converted my SS (Ogre) to a geared travel/bikepacking setup, and bought a nice 2x10 alloy hardtail with RS Reba fork etc (early 2016) (Trek Superfly) so I lived without a functioning SS mtb for a while.
    -Found out the front chainring on my geared Trek Superfly showed serious signs of wear after only 1000 miles. (2 weeks ago)
    -Was really pissed about this.
    -Built up my good old Monocog again this weekend.
    -Totally stoked about riding SS offroad again next weekend!
    Ride more!

  44. #44
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    I just buy multiple bikes and choose the horse for the course. Have my ByStickel back to a singlespeed and really enjoy it when it gets the call. Half heartedly tried to sell it recently, but worth keeping over what I'd likely get for it.Anyone go from geared to SS then back to gears, then back to SS but this time fully r-stickel1.jpg

  45. #45
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    I rode geared for many years.....at the moment I have a 97 specialized rockhopper HT built as a 7 speed commuter bike... my other bike is a 91 Raleigh tangent I got for free.....had a broken shifter, so I converted it to a SS... I have been switching bikes when I find a better bike than what I have.... both of my bikes I picked up for free... so I have it both ways.... I love riding the SS though.... so light and responsive
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    97 specialized rockhopper.- urban beater
    2013 GT aggressor 3.0- urban assault vehicle

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by asphaltdude View Post
    -Built up my good old Monocog again this weekend.
    -Totally stoked about riding SS offroad again next weekend!
    Ooooh, it felt goooooood to ride a fully rigid SS offroad again!!!!
    Ride more!

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by asphaltdude View Post
    Ooooh, it felt goooooood to ride a fully rigid SS offroad again!!!!
    The 2x10 HT will stay in the stable though.
    Ride more!

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