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  1. #1
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    ... and if we just ... Fixed gear??

    I'm interested in buying a fixie, but I wanted some input from people who ride one. I already ride a SS Karate Monkey on the trails, but I thought it'd be fun to have fixie road bike. So far, I've been looking for an old cro moly frame, but nothing has caught my eye. Although, I found a full bike on ebay for a good price. Anyone hear anthing good about Dawes?? Should I get a fixie?

  2. #2
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    Fixie

    If you have a flip flop hub on the KM just get a track cog and try it out. If not a 2nd set of wheels will convert the Monkey to a road fixie. If you like it you can use the wheels on your new project. Whatever you do get on it quick before while it's still hip and trendy.
    Formerly Travis Bickle

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  3. #3
    Natural Born Singlespeeda
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    Quote Originally Posted by tackmeister
    Should I get a fixie?
    OF COURSE you should get one, and become trackmeister! ;-)

    seriously: fixed road biking is reallly fun!
    maui
    Quote Originally Posted by obsessive mechanic
    <...> Its just me and my bike. Ask a very good car driver if he likes ABS, traction control, computerised suspension or engine enhancements or whatever other modern technology that takes away from the true experience of driving. <...>

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by tackmeister
    I'm interested in buying a fixie, but I wanted some input from people who ride one. I already ride a SS Karate Monkey on the trails, but I thought it'd be fun to have fixie road bike. So far, I've been looking for an old cro moly frame, but nothing has caught my eye. Although, I found a full bike on ebay for a good price. Anyone hear anthing good about Dawes?? Should I get a fixie?
    I've been riding fixed around the neighborhood for the past couple of weeks, and it really is good fun. Especially handy for winter, since it keeps my cadence (and, thus, balance) steady through the slush covering the roads.

    If you've already got a Monkey, I'd be inclined to go ahead and run that. Some caveats:

    1) Run shorter cranks than you would for SS. Clipping a pedal as you pedal through a corner can have less-than-desirable consequences.

    2) If you're fixing the rear wheel, make sure you've got threading for a lockring, so the cog won't unscrew itself when you backpedal.

    Also, three more things you should peruse:

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/fixeda.html
    (required reading)

    http://www.63xc.com/

    http://forums.roadbikereview.com/forumdisplay.php?f=50

    Hope this helps,

    ECB


    ECB

  5. #5
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    A new rear wheel with threads for a track cog will allow you to try fixed with with you KM for cheap. The Surly Fixed/Free MTB hub should have the same chain line as your current SS. If you like it like I'm sure you will you can use the wheel in any road conversion you want to try.
    I'm going the opposite way. I have a road conversion fixie I use for commuting and I just bought a SS Pugsley. I can't wait to try out the 4" wide tires on some snow but the weather doesn't look to be cooperating.
    Craig

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    I've been singlespeeding since '98, fixed since '00. I currently don't own any bikes that shift, and only one that coasts. By all means, get yourself a road fixie, but be warned: you may soon be fixing your mountainbike as well!

  7. #7
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    Dawes are solid frames, but you should be able to find tons of 70's to early 90's road bikes for cheap. Something with 531 tubing is usually a good bet. Check garage sales and thrift stores in the spring. Craigslist is good too. But before you drop coin, fix the monkey! You couldn't ask for a better testing platform.

  8. #8
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    Thanks for all the input guys. I really liked the "trackmeister" comment. Actually, I've already thought about putting a fixed cog on my KM, so that's the cheapest route to go to see if I like it. Though, I have no doubt I'll love it. Since I bought the KM, I haven't even ridden my geared bike. There's just no reason for those extra gears. The sheldon brown site is full of good stuff and that's what got me to make the change to SS. Fixed gear is just the next best thing.

    What problems have you found adjusting to the fixed gear?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by tackmeister
    Thanks for all the input guys. I really liked the "trackmeister" comment. Actually, I've already thought about putting a fixed cog on my KM, so that's the cheapest route to go to see if I like it. Though, I have no doubt I'll love it. Since I bought the KM, I haven't even ridden my geared bike. There's just no reason for those extra gears. The sheldon brown site is full of good stuff and that's what got me to make the change to SS. Fixed gear is just the next best thing.

    What problems have you found adjusting to the fixed gear?
    I built up a Steamroller before I ever even tried a fixed gear. It is now my main mode of transportation around the city. The only problem I had was forgetting that I was riding a fixed gear. I would try to coast and the crank would keep going and kick me up into the air a little bit, sending a shot of adrenaline coursing through my bloodstream. After awhile my forgetfullness went away. There are two things I recommend to make the transition easier: clipless pedals and a front brake.

    By the way, an earlier post said you could buy a rear wheel with a flip flop hub for your Monkey and use it later on a road going fixed gear. Obviously that is wrong - track bikes run 120mm hubs while the Monkey is 135mm.

  10. #10
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    I have been riding a 1980 Japanese 10 spd, converted to a fixie/ss for about 2 months now. I had to build a new back wheel for it, so I got an IRO flip flop hub. I really like riding fixed, its pretty fun. Once you go back to riding your mtn bike after a while of not riding it, coasting will feel weird and more like a privelage

  11. #11
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    My wife loves her Soma.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by tackmeister
    What problems have you found adjusting to the fixed gear?
    #1: Pedal Strike. On a turn, you can't make sure that your inside pedal is up, because it is always turning. I learned this one the hard way (crash on the road). This is why a lot of fixed gear riders run 165 cranks.

    Clipless pedals make it so much easier to deal with, since you can't take your feet off the pedals carelessly. A front brake is something a lot of people (I think the majority) won't ride without.

  13. #13
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    Steamroller fixie

    I had Quality build me a rear wheel, shopped the sales for a front brake, handle bar, Chris King headset and etc. and the bike was put together for about $800. 165 Shimano 600 cranks off of eBay are about $20 to $30. Eggs for clipless pedals. Riding it for about a year and could not be happier. As a basically perverted individual, I really want someone to steal it from the coffee shop I go to - just to see the crash. You really find out different things about riding on a fixie.

    Rick
    "Oh, and how dare you accuse me of lying, drinking, getting high" DessertRagged

  14. #14
    Am I getting too bulky?
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    FWIW, I have yet to strike a pedal in the one and a half years I've had my fixie, and I'm running 175mm cranks on my Steamroller. I clipped pedals many times while riding my old racing bike with Campy quills without crashing, so I'm constantly aware of the possibility. It just hasn't happened. I for sure don't lean the bike over like I would if I could freewheel, but I've been surprised by the lean angles I've gotten testing the limits. I'm using my Time MTB pedals btw, and I'd be as much concerned about the width/protrusion of the pedals and the Q-factor of the cranks, as I would the crank arm length.

    The biggest broblem adjusting to fixed for me was getting used to not freewheeling. It took about two rides for my brain to learn that I couldn't coast. That and switching back to freewheeling affter extended periods riding fixed can be very discombobulating.
    I gotta roll, can't stand still, got a flame in my heart, can't get my fill.

  15. #15
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    Beware the fixed Monkey...

    I had a Karate Monkey that I fixed about a year and a half ago, just as an experiment. I had already been toying around with my fixed Cross-Check off road, but I wanted to see what a real mountain bike felt like fixed.
    Since then, I ordered a custom Wily with a higher BB, and haven't had a freewheel since. Just a warning...
    As Thor29 stated, spacing between the KM and a track frame is 15mm, but the difference btween the KM and a post-1985 road frame will only be 5mm- easily within the flexible parameters of steel.
    Still, if you fix your Monkey, you might not make it back.

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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thor29

    By the way, an earlier post said you could buy a rear wheel with a flip flop hub for your Monkey and use it later on a road going fixed gear. Obviously that is wrong - track bikes run 120mm hubs while the Monkey is 135mm.
    there are plenty of 135mm flip-flop hubs available.

    Off-road Fixing is insane-fun! More crazy than DH! You'll love it, it's addictive, and after a while coasting feels really weird (when/if you go back...).
    Ride.

  17. #17
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    If you go clipless, I recommend a double-sided pedal - maybe Speedplays or Eggbeaters - although personally I've reverted to toe clips. Flipping and clipping road pedals is a bit of a pain -- remember, you want to get it right on the first try, because the pedals are spinning ever faster as you accelerate from a stop. Mountain-bike clipless pedals work a lot better, because they're double-sided. But on my new fixie I went with MKS platforms and Christophe straps. I can flip and get into them extremely easily, and best of all, I can wear regular old shoes, so when I'm out running errands I don't have to walk funny and make noises when I get to the bookstore. I can still put the old clipless pedals and shoes on if I'm going for a long road ride, but most of the time I don't bother making the switch.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thor29
    By the way, an earlier post said you could buy a rear wheel with a flip flop hub for your Monkey and use it later on a road going fixed gear. Obviously that is wrong - track bikes run 120mm hubs while the Monkey is 135mm.
    This is true if you use a track bike but you can use a 135mm hub on a steel road bike. Its pretty easy to respace a 126mm or 130mm steel road bike to 135mm. The biggest difference is the chain line is 52mm vs. 42mm, so you will have to put the chainring on the outside of a road crank and you may need a different BB.
    I've used various 120mm, 126mm and 135mm hubs on several different bikes without much difficulty.
    Craig

  19. #19
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    How on earth do you bunny hop on a fixie?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab25
    How on earth do you bunny hop on a fixie?
    Just like bunnyhopping a regular bike, except don't stop pedaling. That's the hard part. I find it really hard to lift the rear (or unweight it to allow the wheel up) whist still turning the cranks. I think I've maxed out at two inches so far. Fun trying though, my 5km ride home from work has become a whole new series of challenges.
    Ride.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Padre
    My wife loves her Soma.
    The dog doesn't really care.
    I am getting a Soma built up this week.

    /stoked

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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab25
    How on earth do you bunny hop on a fixie?
    Front wheel first, then follow with the back as you pull up on the rising pedal. Not as intuitive as on a coasting bike, but not as hard as it would seem.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab25
    How on earth do you bunny hop on a fixie?
    Using a pedal kick/jap slap I can get the fixie up as high as my XC bike if I'm moving slow enough to put some good torque into the pedals.
    Slowly slipping to retrogrouchyness

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