should I convert my road bike to SS-
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  1. #1
    ride on(e)
    Reputation: SS'r in Kansas's Avatar
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    Jan 2004

    should I convert my road bike to SS

    there was a thread earlier today titled "a few pictures from the darkside" that I read about riding on the road, SS style

    so I got to thinking, should I convert my road bike to SS

    Anyone else out there ride roadie SS? I really don't ride it that much, most of my riding is on my mtb SS. I am sure other roadie's would look at me and think I'm crazy, and I wouldn't care if I got dropped occasionally as long as I knew my way back home.

    What do you all think?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: erol/frost's Avatar
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    Jan 2004
    Hell, go ahead, be curious and do it. Don`t let the other brownshirts-on-wheels bother you.

  3. #3
    34N 118W
    Reputation: Hollywood's Avatar
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    Dec 2003

    Flat Kansas?

    some have said that a SS road bike is boring. Unless it's hilly where you live, I'd have to agree. Doing the "spin / coast / repeat" routine will get old if it's flat.

    The solution? Fixed gear! It will keep your rides lively, put a smile on your face and you get to lock up your back wheel with no brakes

    try about a 42:17 or equivalent to start.


  4. #4
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    Reputation: ernesto_from_Wisconsin's Avatar
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    Jan 2004


    Do it! I have, and I am working on the Cannondale project now to have a SS road bike for the spring:

    I do ride my Cross hairs SS, but with the new Cannondale, it will be a different story. This thin's stiff, and very light. I live amongst many hills in the Pewaukee area known as the Lake Country...many, many hills, so it will be a lot of fun...and yes, I might also turn it as a fixie. We'll see.

  5. #5
    Drinkin' Buddy
    Reputation: Blowout's Avatar
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    Dec 2003

    Fixie all the way!

    I agree with Hollywood, go for a fixie. It makes all the short rides big workouts and really changes the character of the ride. Rides that would be boring on a geared road bike become very interesting on a fixie because you cannot coast going downhill or around corners. I love mine with the 42:17 gearing. I can cruise at 18-20 and still make it up the hill to my house (albeit at a crawl!). Just remeber to keep pedaling.
    Got Beer?

  6. #6
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    Jan 2004
    I just cojnverted my old (and only) roadie to SS. I just left the FW on and chose a gear. It is fun, and I think I will ride that bike more. It just sat before. I have semi-horizontals, so tenstion wasn't a problem. I did have a lot of slippage though. I'll probably build up a surly fixed/free rear wheel for it, that is if I like the skinny-tire thing.

    In short, do it.

  7. #7
    get down!
    Reputation: appleSSeed's Avatar
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    Dec 2003

    I did it and also ride in Kansas(topeka). I tried fixie, but my area wasn't cut out for it, basically there's a lot of steep ups and downs and I couldn't stop spinning the hell out of my knees unless I braked. I like to go fast, so I flipped it over and set it up at 50 x 16. One day I'll get an ENO but changing gears is a pain in the ass on those things cause I don't have a vise. So, yes do it, it's fun.

    Oh, I have been dropped though but I don't really care, I don't ride in groups and if I get dropped I don't give a damn. Most likely if you can draft off of them...and piss them off won't get dropped.
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  8. #8
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    Reputation: SSconny's Avatar
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    Dec 2003

    Might as well

    Convert it. Just do it, c'mon. I converted my early 90's trek 400 cromo roadbike into my SS commuter. At first I kept the cassette on, and picked a nice gear for my climb home. This lasted for over a year. Just recently I built a wheel around a Paul SS hub, stretched the rear triangles to fit the longer length hub. I put a 42 tooth ring in front, on the outside of the spider for a straighter chainline, and put a new 9 spd chain on.
    The dropouts are deep, so I have room to tension the axle. No slippage as of yet, this bike is just too much fun not to ride it. Nothin' ta loose!


  9. #9
    Ride what you want!!
    Reputation: george_da_trog's Avatar
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    Jul 2003
    Quote Originally Posted by Hollywood
    The solution? Fixed gear!
    Yeah, I have to say, if it's not fixie, then don't bother. I don't think you can go fixie with a tensioner.

    You'll blow your knee out.

    Trogs: Too Tough for Carbon Fiber

  10. #10
    KgB is offline
    Reputation: KgB's Avatar
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    Jan 2004

    go fixed

    definately more fun fixed,The only time I freewheel is on extremely hilly stuff,the downhills will kill you on a fixed,not the uphills.
    or If I want a more leisurely ride I will freewheel.I have a flip flop hub

    singlespeeding a road bike is pretty boring and slow, most average road bikers will smoke you on the flats and downhills.

    unless you're in the Tour....oh wait wrong thread.

  11. #11
    highly visible
    Reputation: GlowBoy's Avatar
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    Jan 2004

    do it!

    I yanked the derailleurs off my road bike a year and a half ago ... haven't put them back on since. Did a century ride last May 42x16 (although I shoulda done it 42x18).

    I think I'm going to have to start running gears again for the really tough road rides so I don't ruin my bad knee, but I'm still dedicated to running SS on most road rides (and of course all MTB rides that don't involve a BOB trailer)

  12. #12
    Recovering couch patato
    Reputation: Cloxxki's Avatar
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    Jan 2004
    I decided that since the road is purely commuting and training for me, I might as well use SS to make it emphasize my weak points. SS is my blessing punishment for being such a bad spinner and cranker. 52-20 is a flatland commuter's dream, 52-16 or better : 56-17 is good for my training crits.
    So I barely took any parts off my Giant TCR (refuse to ride the noodle anymore, and built a Surly Pacer. I just love it, never even tried it with gears! I took the Pacer (geared frame) just for it's blue color, BTW.

    Buy a singleator or similar plus a Shimano cog and you're in business!

  13. #13
    The cat's name is jake
    Reputation: BungedUP's Avatar
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    Aug 2003
    I turned my late 90's Cannondale roadbike into a SS. I don't ride it daily (I'm more often on my mtnbike), but when I do ride it, I have a lot of fun. Rather than spend money on a chain tensioning device, I just use the deraileur with a short section of cable that runs from the barrel adjuster to the pinch bolt. Some day I'll add a singleator or something of that sort.

    I like the bike as a SS becuase I don't feel compelled to keep up with or wait for anyone else. You just go as fast or slow as you can - it's a very happy-go-lucky experience.

    I remember my first experience on a fixed gear - my brain couldn't figure out that you can't stop pedalling and my legs started bouncing all over the place. It was hysterical and frightening as all get out at the same time. I was pretty embarassed to boot as I was riding through a college campus when I lost control while firmly attached to the bucking machine.

  14. #14
    Reputation: 2tricky's Avatar
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    Jan 2004

    Another vote for fixed!

    I think mine is around 53 gear inches. I use a cheapo flip flop Suzue hub with a shimano 17T freewheel on one side and a Surly track cog on the other. I originally thought I would need the ability to coast, but after riding fixed I would not have bought the freewheel.
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