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Thread: direct drive

  1. #1
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    ... and if we just ... direct drive

    When making a SS i am told that there are two ways. the first with a "free wheel" ?? and the second way is the direct drive method? which way is better? my guy at the bike shop said he wouldn't recommend direct drive. My knowledge of bikes is limited so i am relying on you for advice. thanks.

    B.L.

  2. #2
    hispanic mechanic
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    "direct drive" aslo known as fixed gear...

    Having now done about 6 months of occasional fixed gear riding on the road, and two weeks of fixed off-road, I can tell you that it's probably not the best way to jump into single speeding. i would recommend trying it with a freewheel for a while. After you get used to the different climbing and momentum-saving techniques required to ride single, then maybe look into fixed gear!

    the los
    BTW, if you do decide to go fixed later, be prepared to be called a freak by your riding buddies!
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  3. #3
    A plain old rider
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    I guess you could call it that...

    but what he really should have called it was fixed gear. Which means that as long as the wheel is turning the cranks must be turning too. So in order to slow down or stop you must put back pressure on the pedals (and most fixed gear people use a front brake). Also you have to lean forward when you place the back pressure on to ease a little of the tension from the back (if your good you can skid the tire on asphalt).

    If it is your first single speed use a freewheel, then if you want to spice up the ride put a fixed gear on (that is if the hub you have accepts fixed gears.
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  4. #4
    Who are the brain police?
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    I can't imagine fixed gear riding..

    Quote Originally Posted by The Tree
    but what he really should have called it was fixed gear. Which means that as long as the wheel is turning the cranks must be turning too. So in order to slow down or stop you must put back pressure on the pedals (and most fixed gear people use a front brake). Also you have to lean forward when you place the back pressure on to ease a little of the tension from the back (if your good you can skid the tire on asphalt).

    If it is your first single speed use a freewheel, then if you want to spice up the ride put a fixed gear on (that is if the hub you have accepts fixed gears.
    I can't imagine fixed gear riding. I could see myself bombing down a hill, hit a bump, slip off the pedals.... then turn my legs into hamburger trying to get my feet back on.
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  5. #5
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    I ride a fixed gear time trials bike from time to time when I'm in the city.

    But I wouldn't recommend a fixxie for of road used because you often need to slow or stop your cadence to deal with obstacles. On a fixed gear you would have to keep a steady cadence straight through a drop or over a log.

  6. #6
    drev-il, not Dr. Evil!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Locoman
    I can't imagine fixed gear riding. I could see myself bombing down a hill, hit a bump, slip off the pedals.... then turn my legs into hamburger trying to get my feet back on.

    If can't imagine riding fixed gear on flat/platform pedals. If you've yet to try it, do it clipless so your feet don't slip off as easily.

  7. #7
    hidden persuasions
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    riding fixed gear off road offers many more challenges than...

    any other biking experience i have had. ratcheting your pedals to get the timing correct for obstacles is just one of them. it involves a delicate balance of front brake, sometimes rear brake and weight shifting to unload the rear wheel enough to get it to spin backwards without shedding too much of your speed or momentum. i have found the beast and i have tamed it...
    Last edited by fixedbeer; 05-11-2004 at 08:39 AM. Reason: word deletion

  8. #8
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    Direst Drive

    I ride a fixie on asphalt and a freewheel on the dirt. The former for a year or so - 80% of the time. The latter exclusively for about 90 days. There is no way I'd ride a fixie offroad on anything other than a very very very very very easy trail. Think fire road. Maybe I'll feel different in a year or so. It certainly is the next logical step. [Logical may not be the right word in this context]

    That said, has anyone ever tried adding a coaster break to a SS? It seems like a cool thing to do.

  9. #9
    drev-il, not Dr. Evil!
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    Quote Originally Posted by JHESEE
    That said, has anyone ever tried adding a coaster break to a SS? It seems like a cool thing to do.
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  10. #10
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    Coaster breaks rule

    Sick. Coaster breaks has got to be the next step. plus, I love the idea of riding on flip/flops.

  11. #11
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    true...

    Quote Originally Posted by fixedbeer
    any other biking experience i have had. ratcheting your pedals to get the timing correct for obstacles is just one of them. it involves a delicate balance of front brake, sometimes rear brake and weight shifting to unload the rear wheel enough to get it to spin backwards without shedding too much of your speed or momentum. i have found the beast and i have tamed it...
    I have switched my SS fixie Surly to a freewheeled bike with yes, 2 brakes. The hills around here are killers going down with only the front brake and the pressure to slow down with the cranks. um, no thanks.

  12. #12
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    Better yet

    Add 29" wheels to the mix and it'll be perfect

  13. #13
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    yes 29er's are the way to go

    Quote Originally Posted by JHESEE
    Add 29" wheels to the mix and it'll be perfect
    been riding my SS 29er for 3years now and love it. went fixed on one the left side with the option of free on the right side. but now i am fixed on both sides. 34x16 left, 32x17 right. see pictures...
    Attached Images Attached Images

  14. #14
    Medium?
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    'zat a ruffian 29er frame?

    I didn't know there was such a beast.

  15. #15
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    coaster brakes

    The last year that Granny Gear held a 24 hour race at Canaan (1999 I think) the team that was camping next to us rode fixed gear with coaster brakes. We thought they were insane, the hills at Canaan can be pretty brutal. They did make it and they looked like they had fun despite all of the blood coming from their limbs. That is what planted the SS seed in my head.

  16. #16
    giddy up!
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    Hmmm....

    ...I am pretty sure that such a beast does not exist, but I could be wrong...

    fixxed gear with a coaster? impossible, right? anyone, anyone?



    Quote Originally Posted by Chainwhipped
    The last year that Granny Gear held a 24 hour race at Canaan (1999 I think) the team that was camping next to us rode fixed gear with coaster brakes. We thought they were insane, the hills at Canaan can be pretty brutal. They did make it and they looked like they had fun despite all of the blood coming from their limbs. That is what planted the SS seed in my head.
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  17. #17
    drev-il, not Dr. Evil!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chainwhipped
    The last year that Granny Gear held a 24 hour race at Canaan (1999 I think) the team that was camping next to us rode fixed gear with coaster brakes. We thought they were insane, the hills at Canaan can be pretty brutal. They did make it and they looked like they had fun despite all of the blood coming from their limbs. That is what planted the SS seed in my head.
    Team Hugh Jass, possibly? I think everyone's heard tales about them, like the one where they the whole team used only on pair of shorts between all of them.

  18. #18
    drev-il, not Dr. Evil!
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    Quote Originally Posted by donkey
    ...I am pretty sure that such a beast does not exist, but I could be wrong...

    fixxed gear with a coaster? impossible, right? anyone, anyone?
    Yeah, it doesn't make sense to me either.

  19. #19
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    ooops

    Quote Originally Posted by donkey
    ...I am pretty sure that such a beast does not exist, but I could be wrong...

    fixxed gear with a coaster? impossible, right? anyone, anyone?
    You are right, I don't know what I was thinking, coaster brake hubs are not fixed. I had to think back to my childhood.

    It been a really long day

  20. #20
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    yep ruffage 29er

    Quote Originally Posted by Fast Eddy
    I didn't know there was such a beast.
    had it made for me by the folks at gunnar. chris kelly made the fork. dimensions- 22" c-top of collar, 25" actual top tube. why so, big? because i'm 6'8" tall. the bike fits and more importantly, the wheels fit the bike. can you imagine what this thing would look like with 26ers on it?

  21. #21
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    Wow

    Quote Originally Posted by fixedbeer
    been riding my SS 29er for 3years now and love it. went fixed on one the left side with the option of free on the right side. but now i am fixed on both sides. 34x16 left, 32x17 right. see pictures...
    That is a strange and cool beast. Do you have a chain ring on both sides? What do you do, swap the chain out to the left side for steep hills? What is it like riding a fixie off road? How do you handle drops? I know "carefully"........

  22. #22
    drev-il, not Dr. Evil!
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    Wink You're new around here, aren't you?

    Quote Originally Posted by JHESEE
    Do you have a chain ring on both sides? What do you do, swap the chain out to the left side for steep hills?
    A lighter solution would be to take out the wheel, flip it, then put it in backwards. Check out the FAQ up top for more A's to Q's.

  23. #23
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    dual drive

    Quote Originally Posted by JHESEE
    That is a strange and cool beast. Do you have a chain ring on both sides? What do you do, swap the chain out to the left side for steep hills? What is it like riding a fixie off road? How do you handle drops? I know "carefully"........
    yes, chain rings on both sides. i originally had a phil wood flip-flop hub in the rear. whatever mood i was in i would just swap the chain over to the other side. mountain bike tires are directional, ya' know. if you flip the wheel around you change the direction of the tred. all that tread pattern R&D gone down the toilet. i ended up riding it fixed so much that i decided to commit to fixed/fixed. the problem there is not to many companies are doing that in a 135mm 'cept one that found. level components. the cog mounting system is totally new but once i made the commitment it has been nothing but worry free...

    riding fixed offroad is like, is like nothing else out there. in a previous post somebody mentioned that they would only try it on very very very very easy trails. that's just it. start out small and comfortable, then work your way up to more challenges. isn't that what it's about. i figured out a long time ago i wasn't the fastest rider nor the most agressive. i just had a lot of tecnical skill. i guess that's what it's like. a whole bunch of tecnique. tons and tons of tecnique.

    oh, and the drops. haven't done anything over 2feet yet being rigid and all. so, i couldn't tell ya'.

  24. #24
    Steamroller
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    Huh?

    Quote Originally Posted by fixedbeer
    been riding my SS 29er for 3years now and love it. went fixed on one the left side with the option of free on the right side. but now i am fixed on both sides. 34x16 left, 32x17 right. see pictures...
    Ok, do you actually have both front and rear cogs/rings on each side? Do you move the chain from right to left to alter the gearing? Cool but Bizarre
    Two Wheeled and Too Big

  25. #25
    Steamroller
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    Fixed fear

    Quote Originally Posted by links0311
    When making a SS i am told that there are two ways. the first with a "free wheel" ?? and the second way is the direct drive method? which way is better? my guy at the bike shop said he wouldn't recommend direct drive. My knowledge of bikes is limited so i am relying on you for advice. thanks.

    B.L.
    I'm thinking if it is your first SS bike, fixed gear will equal legs that need to be fixed. Picture pedals hitting your calfs, ankles, heels, etc. real hard. I'm not saying they are not cool and manly, just that they would not be good for a first SS. You will likely enjoy enough pain just from trying to climb for a while.
    Two Wheeled and Too Big

  26. #26
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    Agreed that would be easier. But it looks like

    There are two sets of chain rings. Additionally, he mentions that one is 34t and the other is 32. I never say that before.

    Yes I am new to this spot. I just got my first SS (Cannondale 1FG) 90 days ago and am hooked.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chainwhipped
    You are right, I don't know what I was thinking, coaster brake hubs are not fixed. I had to think back to my childhood.

    It been a really long day
    Picture this... rolling down a technical section and losing your chain...
    being that you're running a coaster brake, you probably won't have the 'hand brake'.

    Just make sure you're not behind me when it happens... okay? =)

    I guess you could liken a coaster brake to being fixed. It just depends if you can stop the pedals that forcefully.

    Also, fixed gears and singulators (or any chain tensioners) do not work!

    You really need to learn to ride fixed on the street before you take it off road. Unless you want to have a leg or foot jammed into a rock, due to the not being able to freewheel. If you're riding clipped in, your foot position is going to be related to the position and speed of the rear wheel for the most part. Until you get good, you'll be a the mercy of the wheel.

    I bashed a foot on time trying to hop up on a curb when I was trying fixed gear on one of my road bikes.

  28. #28
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    dual fixed 135mm alternative...

    if you have some cash lying around heres a possible solutions to the dual fixed 135mm hub: get an xt disc hub, put the surly fixxer on the freewheel side http://www.surlybikes.com/parts.html
    call up boone and have one of these made:
    http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.ph...ixed+gear+disc
    then ride like hell cause your one tough SOB!!!

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by JHESEE
    Sick. Coaster breaks has got to be the next step. plus, I love the idea of riding on flip/flops.
    I would rather have a bike that does not break.
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  30. #30
    drev-il, not Dr. Evil!
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    Quote Originally Posted by JHESEE
    There are two sets of chain rings. Additionally, he mentions that one is 34t and the other is 32. I never say that before.

    Yes I am new to this spot. I just got my first SS (Cannondale 1FG) 90 days ago and am hooked.
    Wow, apologies JHESEE. I missed the dual chainring thing.

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