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  1. #1
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    Single Speed Endurance Racing!

    How about a thread for single speed endurance racing.

    Share your stories from big epic events like Pisgah Productions, Mohican, other NUE 100 mile races, six hour events, etc.

    What works for you, how is your bike setup, did you enjoy the single speed for the full distance? Were you hammered at the end?

    What are the most epic events you have done in the past? What are you planning for this year?

  2. #2
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    I'm in my second season of ss racing, all on a Pivot Les 29er. My first big one was Pierre's Hole 100 followed by Park City P2P, both done with 32x19. For the most part they were super fun with intermittent moments of pure darkness, but always been able to pull through. The True Grit 100 in March was probably the most painful. After the True Grit race, I went up to a 34x19 with Enve's rigid fork which has been perfect for a 6hr race (Frog Hollow) in southern Utah and the Gunnison Growler over Memorial Day.

    Legs are usually pretty spicy at the end, but I have so much fun over the 6-8hrs it's practically an addiction. Driving out to Bend for the High Cascades 100 in July and finishing up the season w/ P2P.

  3. #3
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    I have dabbled in SS riding over the years....been riding since 1994.

    Back in '08/09 I rode the SS quite a bit....but always went back to the geared bike.

    Broke my leg in early 2010. Once I got back on the bike, I had 2 geared FS bikes, so I sold one and built a SS. It was all downhill from there. The SS was ridden more and more and the geared bike collected dust.

    Have done some endurance events in the past...all on the geared bike. Mid 2013 I decided I was gonna give a local event here that our club puts on(Vision Quest 56 miles/11,500'). I had completed it before...barely, on a geared bike in 2007(10 hrs). THis time I would do it on the SS...and I set a goal of sub 8 hrs. All the training paid off and I peaked at the perfect time. I was so far ahead of my goal at mile 40 that I was thinking that a sub 7 hr time was possible. Wheels fell of the bus a bit shortly after that. However still finished with a time of 7:36....my moving time was 7:06. Gonna give it a go again this year, would love to knock my ride time below 7:00 and overall time of about 7:15. Ran my normal gear of 32x22. There is a 3 mile HAB at mile 42...so it didn't matter what bike you were on. The SS was a good choice for everything except for the final 3 miles which are on a gentle/flat/washboard dirt road.

    Since then I have continued to do long training rides....regularly 60-85 miles on the SS.

    In January I decided that I was gonna do a 12hr Race...we had one locally here that I never done. Again, I had done 12hr events in the past, but always on a geared bike. Figured that I would just substitute my normal Saturday big training ride with the 12hr. SS Solo class. In my younger days, I had completed 7 & 8 laps at the 12 hrs I had done, and I wasn't in shape. Set my goal for minimum of 8 laps, but was gunning for 10...anything over that would have been gravy. Felt good for the first 7hrs. Bonked pretty hard on my 9th lap. With nearly 3 hours left I headed out for my 10th lap. Felt a little better. It was the 2nd night lap and the temps were dropping fast. I began to start making minor mistakes on the DH's....and that is one of my strengths. Finished that lap in 1:24 minutes.....I could have headed out for another lap, but only had 1:26 to do it....figured I wouldn't make the time, and for my own safety, called it a night. 10 laps in 10:35. Ended up in 3rd place...96.5 miles/13,000'. 32x21 this time and the gearing was perfect. Didn't really care for the lap after lap after lap....yet I am doing it again this weekend.

    I'm hooked.
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  4. #4
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    I hope to be doing a solo 6 hour on the SS next month.

  5. #5
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    I do all the 12/24 hour races here in AZ on a single speed.

  6. #6
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    We need velobike to chime in. He has done a number of 24hr and other endurance races

    Also slowerthensnot with his fixed great divide race experience

  7. #7
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    I come from a DH background but am now more and more motivated to race XC. I have more training under me so far this season than ever before; doing a 6 hr race in a couple weekends. I also get a little burned out doing repetitive laps, but I'm hoping being in better shape will help with that. I ride a 32/19 on a 29er and haven't ever really experimented with changing that, but here on the east coast I think we have a little less of the INSANE climbing you guys out west talk about. Sometimes it's a bummer at a smaller race to not have an SS category but I don't let it bother me too much because it's all I've got and I am mostly racing myself. But it is fun to pass geared bikes on a climb and out pump them on the decent. Longer races did push me to go from rigid to front squish because my arms and hands would get so tired after 3 hours of riding rough singletrack. I'm not sure I have the mental capacity for 100, but who knows where I'll be in the future.

    How much are you guys eating per hour in an endurance race? I read one article that said 700 calories per hour. Combos are an awesome salty snack! I also make raw energy balls with ground up dates and nuts with maple syrup, they're soft enough to choke down when weak and the nuts digest faster when ground up.

    Cool thread, thanks!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by shankes3 View Post
    How much are you guys eating per hour in an endurance race? I read one article that said 700 calories per hour.
    The biggest mistake I see people make is eating too much.

    For racing, I consume between 60 and 80 calories per hour. This works out to be around one gel ever 90 minutes but I actually don't use gels.

    At a high pace effort solid food is very hard to take. Gels are also hard to take because you really need water with them. Having some calories mixed with water is easier so if you do use standard gels try dissolving them in your water bottle.

    Products like Tailwind and other energy drinks are IMHO a better solution vs. gels and bars. For the Pisgah PMBAR race I used the Tailwind drink.

    What I personally use is 1/2 ounce honey plus 1/2 ounce lemon juice and around 1/8 tsp of salt mixed up with between six and 24 ounces of water. I prefer my mixture because it is cheap and I have honey/lemon/salt around the house. This mixture worked well for me at the 6 hours of Lake Norman race. I also used it for Pisgah 111k and in training.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by febikes View Post
    How about a thread for single speed endurance racing.
    Is this even a thing?
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    I'll typically have two bottles, one with water and the other with GU Roctane. To cut down on trash, I use the Hammer Nutrition flasks filled with their bulk gel. I try to take in calories every 45-60min, but it also depends on terrain. Towards the end, half of a banana and those mini Cokes really help getting over walls/cramps.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by febikes View Post
    What I personally use is 1/2 ounce honey plus 1/2 ounce lemon juice and around 1/8 tsp of salt mixed up with between six and 24 ounces of water. I prefer my mixture because it is cheap and I have honey/lemon/salt around the house. This mixture worked well for me at the 6 hours of Lake Norman race.
    That's awesome, thanks for sharing man.


    Who is that DICKY guy, anyways?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by shankes3 View Post


    Who is that DICKY guy, anyways?
    I heard he rides on nothing but Little Debbie's brownies, creek water, and beer.

    Prolly just a rumor.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by febikes View Post
    The biggest mistake I see people make is eating too much.

    For racing, I consume between 60 and 80 calories per hour. This works out to be around one gel ever 90 minutes but I actually don't use gels.

    At a high pace effort solid food is very hard to take. Gels are also hard to take because you really need water with them. Having some calories mixed with water is easier so if you do use standard gels try dissolving them in your water bottle.

    Products like Tailwind and other energy drinks are IMHO a better solution vs. gels and bars. For the Pisgah PMBAR race I used the Tailwind drink.

    What I personally use is 1/2 ounce honey plus 1/2 ounce lemon juice and around 1/8 tsp of salt mixed up with between six and 24 ounces of water. I prefer my mixture because it is cheap and I have honey/lemon/salt around the house. This mixture worked well for me at the 6 hours of Lake Norman race. I also used it for Pisgah 111k and in training.
    60-80 cal/hr would leave me on the side of the trail after about 4-5hrs. The mistake I see people make when it comes to fuel is that they assume that what works for one person doesn't for another. The general rule of thumb is 200-300 cal/hr intake. Those calories should be taken in over that full hour, not all at the beginning or end of the time. Each person needs to find their ideal fuel intake. For me, I'm right at 250 cal/hr. If I eat too much I lose my appetite, if I eat too little I feel like I'm going to yak any time I take on food or water. The type of food matters too, as you want something that your stomach can process quickly. A ham and egg bagel might be 2hrs worth of calories, but not something easily digested when most of your blood is off bring oxygen to your legs.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by teamdicky View Post
    creek water
    Holyshit man... that's it! Essential electrolytes, protein, pro-biotics and water too!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by shankes3 View Post
    How much are you guys eating per hour in an endurance race? I read one article that said 700 calories per hour.
    I burn between 500 & 700 cals an hour in longer races but there is no way to take in that much. Anything above 150 & I get sick & cannot push myself at all. I've read most endurance athletes can only take in a max of 300. I use Tailwind & mixed too strong a bottle which I drank in the first hour in a race a couple of weeks ago, in addition to eating too much for breakfast. Took me totally out of the race -maybe I should've puked but I stuck with it. After another hour or 2 & some plain water I was ok & could push again, especially up hill. Think I'm going to try 100 calorie bottles in my next few races & longer rides leading up to Hampshire 100 where I ate too damn much last year, too. I figured I'd get my registration fee worth of food out of the aid stations but it turns out it's tough to eat $150 worth of bananas & PB&J...

  16. #16
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    I drink a bottle of Carborocket 333 per hour and eat real food between laps. That said, I weigh 190 pounds, so my caloric needs may be higher than yours.

  17. #17
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    Beer = recovery drink

  18. #18
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    febikes, I believe you've done your fair share of endurance races. Share some of your stories.

    No organized races for me yet. Maybe if I get time to properly train one of these days.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stremf View Post
    febikes, I believe you've done your fair share of endurance races. Share some of your stories.
    It's been a great few years. Back in 2012, I got the bug for SS endurance racing. There are so many great events and such cool people in the sport.


    This year the biggest thing is that I am finally getting a handle on my race pacing and nutrition. The next big hurtle for me is to really find a way to improve my ability on technical terrain.

    For me, the best races are the six hour type events on the "easy" courses like Lake Norman, NC. I don't do as well at races on "hard" courses like the Pisgah 111k but see them as the heart of the sport. Each year, I get better at the skill aspect.

    No organized races for me yet. Maybe if I get time to properly train one of these days.
    It's like chicken and egg. Signing up for a race is a great way to bring focus to your riding. Sometimes it is nice to know that the event looms in the future. For example, this season I am mostly focused on the southern endurance series. The focus helps me with my overall fitness goals regardless of the finish order.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by febikes View Post
    Signing up for a race is a great way to bring focus to your riding.
    Just finished signing up for an easy track 6hr.
    Got 3 weeks to train for it.

    In the immortal words of Jeremy Clarkson, "How hard could it be?"

  21. #21
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    Gu/blocks/whatever are always a 50/50 on having the fire shits after the race and maybe even in the middle of it.

    stinger waffles rock - just don't keep them at home or they become "dessert #6"

    found that fig newtons/nature's bakery fig bars + mix of cytomax/water using about 80% of suggested serving treats me right as rain

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    Mountain Bike Radio just did an excellent podcast on racing nutrition. Check them out.

    I am in no way affiliated with them other than being an avid listener.

  23. #23
    Ahhh the pain....
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    I've done a bunch of backcountry endurance races in AZ and one in NM on the SS. My proudest accomplishments that are around 14 hour efforts are the Gila100, PicketPost Pulverizer, and the Santa Fe Big Friggen Loop. These are all backcountry singletrack races, lots of HAB. I've also done 2 coco250 bikepacking races, and completed the AZT300 on the SS this year....
    Honestly, I've never done an endurance race that goes lap after lap on a set course...only because I just love the whole backcountry feel to a race...you're out there, unsupported, and it's entirely up to you to fix sh*t and get yourself back to civilization.
    The Gila 100 race is a point to point race that traverses 92 miles of the Arizona Trail (N to S) from Picketpost to Oracle and is quitessential desert riding...rugged and gnarly for sure, but beautiful...highly recommended.
    I've found on these long backcountry rides that huge calories and something like a 32-21 or 32-22 is mandatory...

  24. #24
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    After a few mechanicals ruining my race this year, at mohican, I am pulling the SS into race duty. Right now I run a 32x18, but am interested to see what others are running for gearing at mohican.
    I just started using tailwind, and it has been working really well for me. I have spent a few years trying most products on the market, and am hoping I have found a winner.

  25. #25
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    I've done a couple 6hr endurance races as part of a 2-3 person team at Jackrabbit, NC. Did the one last fall with my oldest daughter and did 4 out of the 6 laps we completed. Love the single speed for those.

    I did Pisgah 55.5K in 2014 on a SS Fat bike. That like to have killed me!!! I really wasn't quite ready for the event and the fat bike wheel weight really got to me. Loved the SS even for this event, just needed something lighter. Think I may have overate as well. It took me 9 hrs and 27 minutes, but I finished it.

    Did the Pisgah Couch Potato later that year on a SS 29er and it went WAY smoother, even though it isn't anywhere near as technical and only about half the climbing.

    Was suppose to do the 2015 Pisgah 55.5K, but life got in the way and I simply hadn't had enough time on the bike to be ready to tackle it. I also was back on another SS fat bike. Which I love, but it's just not the right tool for me to attempt these races in the future.

    Currently switching back to either a Surly Krampus 29+ SS or another 29 SS, plan to attend the 2016 55.5K and shave a good bit of time off my 2014 finish. I'll be pulling way less wheel weight, but have absolutely no desire to add gears. That's just one more thing to rip off on Laurel or Pilot anyway.
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    I really gotta give you guys props. That much time on a single speed would kill me (tbh I have not yet ridden a single speed bike on trails before, tonight will be my first experience).
    I do like to learn about intake though, as I am a 235lb 6'2" fella who would like to learn better techniques to pull me through that period of time racing.

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    I've done Julian death march a few times (60+ miler). Freedom 50 at Lake Hodges (now called Filthy 50). I did a solo archipelago-like ride one Sunday just for kicks (61 miles).

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    Quote Originally Posted by jonshonda View Post
    I really gotta give you guys props. That much time on a single speed would kill me (tbh I have not yet ridden a single speed bike on trails before, tonight will be my first experience).
    I do like to learn about intake though, as I am a 235lb 6'2" fella who would like to learn better techniques to pull me through that period of time racing.
    How do you know it would kill you if you haven't done it? I would have never guessed I could ride for more than 11 hrs with over 14k of climbing and 100 miles of distance until I did it. My longest ride that year before doing that race was 4 hours. My previous longest ever ride had been 9'ish hours, and before doing that race I would have never guessed I could knock out 9 hours on the bike. Next goal is a 12hr solo and a 24hr duo.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by solo-x View Post
    How do you know it would kill you if you haven't done it?
    I did a 3 hr fat bike race this winter. Roughly 30 miles w/ 2200ft of climbing, and had a great time (other than the fact my water froze and I cramped like a mofo). I really would like to spend time getting a correct calorie intake down, but the times I am able to ride for 3 hrs is pretty limited.

    I am just really pumped to try my SS Karate Monkey out for the first time on trails.

  30. #30
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    I'd argue that you would have that same issue on any bike. I honestly don't think SS is any harder than geared riding, and in many cases, geared riding is harder. The SS gives you forced recovery zones and you can't accidentally overwork yourself by shifting into too hard of a gear.

    As for long rides, they don't have to be off-road or single speed. I've been getting the bulk of my training mileage in on the road, and all you need is a few 3+ hr rides to figure out what works for you for fueling. Target for 200cal/hr intake first and see how you feel. Bump up to 250cal/hr and see how you feel, then 300cal/hr and see how you feel. At some point you'll go from feeling better as the cal intake increases to gradually feeling worse.

    Also, please understand that cramping isn't JUST a nutrition issue. Nor is it JUST a hydration or electrolyte issue. And it's not the same for everyone. Pace, training, hydration, fueling, planetary alignment and who the Kardashian girls are having sex with all impact when you'll cramp.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by solo-x View Post
    Also, please understand that cramping isn't JUST a nutrition issue. Nor is it JUST a hydration or electrolyte issue. And it's not the same for everyone. Pace, training, hydration, fueling, planetary alignment and who the Kardashian girls are having sex with all impact when you'll cramp.
    Bahahaha, but true.
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  32. #32
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    Love love love endurance SS racing. I thought I was the only one on the Little Debbie/beer diet, glad to see TEAM DICKY is on that diet as well.

  33. #33
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    Just signed up for my first 40 mile ss race in rapid city Sd .. Keep the good info coming as I am trying to learn really quick. Thanks guys.
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    3 days to my first 6hr.
    I've spent the last 8 days fasting and purging in preparation and have implemented a 12 day no-exercise taper.

    Should feel refreshed and rearing to go!

    8-12*C temps forecast.

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    Seriously? I think a good taper and clean eating is great to get ready to race, but fasting and no exercise seems like it is taking it too far.
    [

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    Man, if I did 12 days with no exercise or food I would be absolutely no fun to be around and come race day I would feel like absolute rubbish. Good on you if it works for you though.

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    I call it the Food Poisoning Technique, or FPT for short, not to be confused with FTP of course.

    I'm lighter anyway.
    There's a spot prize of 4 Giant bikes I could win even if I just do one lap.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitrousjunky View Post
    Currently switching back to either a Surly Krampus 29+ SS or another 29 SS, plan to attend the 2016 55.5K and shave a good bit of time off my 2014 finish. I'll be pulling way less wheel weight, but have absolutely no desire to add gears. That's just one more thing to rip off on Laurel or Pilot anyway.
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  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by NordieBoy View Post
    I call it the Food Poisoning Technique, or FPT for short, not to be confused with FTP of course.

    I'm lighter anyway.
    There's a spot prize of 4 Giant bikes I could win even if I just do one lap.
    I finished!

    Ouch!

    15 laps, 85km.

    Last edited by NordieBoy; 06-22-2015 at 02:07 PM.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raybum View Post
    I've done a bunch of backcountry endurance races in AZ and one in NM on the SS. My proudest accomplishments that are around 14 hour efforts are the Gila100, PicketPost Pulverizer, and the Santa Fe Big Friggen Loop. These are all backcountry singletrack races, lots of HAB. I've also done 2 coco250 bikepacking races, and completed the AZT300 on the SS this year....
    Honestly, I've never done an endurance race that goes lap after lap on a set course...only because I just love the whole backcountry feel to a race...you're out there, unsupported, and it's entirely up to you to fix sh*t and get yourself back to civilization.
    The Gila 100 race is a point to point race that traverses 92 miles of the Arizona Trail (N to S) from Picketpost to Oracle and is quitessential desert riding...rugged and gnarly for sure, but beautiful...highly recommended.
    I've found on these long backcountry rides that huge calories and something like a 32-21 or 32-22 is mandatory...
    impressive ss resume... sincerely

  41. #41
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    I raced the 2011 NUE series singlespeed and finished 5th in the series in Open Women. I've also done Breck Epic SS 2x, and I'll be doing it again this year.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NordieBoy View Post
    I finished!

    Ouch!

    15 laps, 85km.
    Congratulations!
    Congratulations!!

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by joebike View Post
    Congratulations!!
    Thanks.

    I set my Forerunner 620 to tell me when my heart rate hit zone 4. Was aiming to be low zone 3 as much as possible.
    Was jumping into zone 4 so often and it was beeping it's little head off, it died after 5 hours. It's meant to last 10...

    The solo winner raced a Surly Crosscheck CX single speed (42/20). He did 20 laps. The winning team only did 23 laps.

  44. #44
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    wondering what the fast riders gear for breck 100, telluride 100, ddc, vapor trail....etc.

    i've run 52 gear inches (34/17 on 26er) for a 12hr race and a number of centuries with 10k+ vertical and did well. running 49.5 gear inches (34/19 29er)....which i definitely feel faster on and allows me to clear virtually everything that i could with gears, but seems like i could benefit from going even a bit smaller to avoid hitting the red zone so often. maybe just being a wimp, idk.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wjphillips View Post
    I've done Julian death march a few times (60+ miler). Freedom 50 at Lake Hodges (now called Filthy 50). I did a solo archipelago-like ride one Sunday just for kicks (61 miles).
    Any sort of gearing recommendation for the Filthy 50? I just signed up for it (excuse to drive to SD for the weekend) and haven't done any riding in that exact neck of the woods.

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    My typical gearing on 29er is 32 x 21, but for P2P I ran 32 x 22 and Leadville 100 I ran 32 x 20, but almost a 19. I've done the Laramie Enduro and 12 hours of Mesa Verde which are both great SS courses. Raced several years endurance events then 3 years exclusive on SS, except for Breck 100, chickened out and rode gears.
    My favorite story is I was eating too many gels and electroylte drink at Leadville # 7 for me. I got sick, felt really bad. Started puking on the bike just as I entered on to Half Moon road returning from Pipeline. I pulled over head between my knees still puking and then dry heaving (good times). A guy offered me a Gatoraide which was the last thing I wanted. After a minute or two I begin to feel better while he looked at my bike and said, "Dude, SingleSpeed is TOO HARD, put some gears on that bike" . I said I feel better know and got on with it. I felt great then but should have started eating again as I was climbing up Powerline but then begin to bonk. Good times!!

  47. #47
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    I have been doing 8 hour solo singlespeed races for about 7-8 years. I placed on the podium many times and even won the series (3 races per season in a series).

    But I am 53 now and it is getting harder and harder for me. This year I placed second in the first race and third in the second race. Tomorrow is the third race of the series.

    I am looking forward to the off-season, just riding for the fun of it.
    My rides:
    Lynskey Ti Pro29 SS
    RM Suzi Q 90 RSL
    KHS Team 29
    S-Works Roubaix
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  48. #48
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    I've got the Ozark Trail 100 this weekend, 104 miles, 103.5 miles of point to point single track with 11,500' of climbing but they give you 29 hours to finish Looking to finish around 12 hours

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    This summer I've done a few 5 and 6 hours races with a couple xxc's and the Shenandoah 100 for the first time on a singlespeed. It's crazy fun, as some would say, an addiction. For me, nutrition and pacing has been my main focus for the longer events. The early part of the year I was eating Gatorade chews with plain water for electrolytes and pb and j for calories. Then I discovered hammer nutrition products, so now I use water with endurolytes taken separately, as needed. Hammer gel in the flask, and usually some sort of protein bars in longer races, I really like clif builder bars, but also eating stuff like bananas and pb and j at aid stations. I usually average a bottle to a bottle and a half of water, one or two endurolytes, and a couple squirts of hammer gel per hour depending on the weather also. I'm 140 lbs soaking wet and run 34-20 gearing on my Raleigh xxix 29er. I like to eat a fairly big breakfast when possible: eggs, potatoes, toast, etc. but I have an iron stomach with an exception to sports drinks... not that I can't keep them down, I just feel nauseas sometimes and prefer the refreshing taste and effects of water. Shenandoah 100 was the highlight of my year racing being a long race and it was awesome. Only thing is, I should have pushed harder. I had a great race and a load of fun but rode fairly conservatively in fear of bonking.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by santacruzer View Post
    I've got the Ozark Trail 100 this weekend, 104 miles, 103.5 miles of point to point single track with 11,500' of climbing but they give you 29 hours to finish Looking to finish around 12 hours
    Finished in 13 hours instead, had a good crash and thought I fractured a wrist around 40 miles in (just a sprain after X-rays) Good for 5th SS
    Single Speed Endurance Racing!-ot100.jpg

  51. #51
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    Cool, the chupacabra fits in the new Fox fork?

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  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by mhopton View Post
    Cool, the chupacabra fits in the new Fox fork?

    Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk
    All the current 3.0 29+ tires fit the 27.5+ Fox Fork, but not the 29 version

  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by santacruzer View Post
    All the current 3.0 29+ tires fit the 27.5+ Fox Fork, but not the 29 version
    So a boost hub in needed then?

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain_America1976 View Post
    So a boost hub in needed then?
    No,just a spacer kit
    Boost Front Hub Adapter for Plus Bikes 15x100 to 15x110 | eBay

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    Just signed up for the Pierreís Hole 100K SS division. Been on a 29er with 32-18 gearing for a season doing typically 20-30 mile rides with 2000-3500 feet of climbing. I find my gearing perfect for this.
    Anyone with experience on the Grand Targhee trails and or endurance racing have gearing advice for the race?
    Western Montana

  56. #56
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    What tire/wheel setup were you using? That is a goal of mine: to one day do P2P on my single speed. It is hard enough as is!

  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canyonman View Post
    My typical gearing on 29er is 32 x 21, but for P2P I ran 32 x 22 and Leadville 100 I ran 32 x 20, but almost a 19. I've done the Laramie Enduro and 12 hours of Mesa Verde which are both great SS courses. Raced several years endurance events then 3 years exclusive on SS, except for Breck 100, chickened out and rode gears.
    My favorite story is I was eating too many gels and electroylte drink at Leadville # 7 for me. I got sick, felt really bad. Started puking on the bike just as I entered on to Half Moon road returning from Pipeline. I pulled over head between my knees still puking and then dry heaving (good times). A guy offered me a Gatoraide which was the last thing I wanted. After a minute or two I begin to feel better while he looked at my bike and said, "Dude, SingleSpeed is TOO HARD, put some gears on that bike" . I said I feel better know and got on with it. I felt great then but should have started eating again as I was climbing up Powerline but then begin to bonk. Good times!!
    Hey Canyonman,
    Having done P2P on your SS what did you find what a good tire/wheel combo? I have done P2P recently but it was on a FS, geared trail bike. It is a goal of mine to do this on my SS, though. Any thoughts? Thanks

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghood View Post
    Just signed up for the Pierreís Hole 100K SS division. Been on a 29er with 32-18 gearing for a season doing typically 20-30 mile rides with 2000-3500 feet of climbing. I find my gearing perfect for this.
    Anyone with experience on the Grand Targhee trails and or endurance racing have gearing advice for the race?
    Iíve only done PH100 on gears but with the climbing involved even with the 100k I would look into 32x20.
    I ride that gearing on my ss in Golden CO and I seem to be good on most long climbs but you could be more athletic than me.


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    Quote Originally Posted by claystrick View Post
    Iíve only done PH100 on gears but with the climbing involved even with the 100k I would look into 32x20.
    I ride that gearing on my ss in Golden CO and I seem to be good on most long climbs but you could be more athletic than me.


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    Thanks! I have a 19 in my shop so Iíll probably try that for a bit around home to see if it feels too spinny. Iíve only ever ridden the 20 and only on my home trails in Missoula.
    Iím gathering that the most commonly used gear for endurance racing is a 32-20 or equivalent.
    Western Montana

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghood View Post
    Thanks! I have a 19 in my shop so Iíll probably try that for a bit around home to see if it feels too spinny. Iíve only ever ridden the 20 and only on my home trails in Missoula.
    Iím gathering that the most commonly used gear for endurance racing is a 32-20 or equivalent.
    It all depends on the course and your ability. I'm doing a 50 miler in a month and I'll be on a 34x19 or 34x18. Since you mentioned the 32 chainring it's closest equivalent would be 32-17.

    It's a relatively flat course compared to some of these other rides that have been posted.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    It all depends on the course and your ability. I'm doing a 50 miler in a month and I'll be on a 34x19 or 34x18. Since you mentioned the 32 chainring it's closest equivalent would be 32-17.

    It's a relatively flat course compared to some of these other rides that have been posted.
    Thatís interesting. Iím used to doing about 2000-3000 ft rides over about 20-30 miles every weekend in the summer. Iím mainly worried about blowing up on steep sections during such a long ride. I only have so many blow ups in me before I start to really suffer. I guess the bottom line is that I wonít know until I ride it.
    Western Montana

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghood View Post
    Thatís interesting. Iím used to doing about 2000-3000 ft rides over about 20-30 miles every weekend in the summer. Iím mainly worried about blowing up on steep sections during such a long ride. I only have so many blow ups in me before I start to really suffer. I guess the bottom line is that I wonít know until I ride it.
    Exactly and this is a relatively flat course 4k feet of elevation over 50 miles. Im going to bring a big gear and see what happens. Run a big gear and be competitive or spin myself out. Top 10 averaged 14-15. Winner averaged 17.

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  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    Exactly and this is a relatively flat course 4k feet of elevation over 50 miles. Im going to bring a big gear and see what happens. Run a big gear and be competitive or spin myself out. Top 10 averaged 14-15. Winner averaged 17.

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    I thought PH was about 3600 ft per 30ish mile lap. I think as long as the climbs are a reasonable grade Iíll be ok on 32-18. But if there are some brutal grades in there Iíd probably be better off on something lower.
    Western Montana

  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghood View Post
    I thought PH was about 3600 ft per 30ish mile lap. I think as long as the climbs are a reasonable grade Iíll be ok on 32-18. But if there are some brutal grades in there Iíd probably be better off on something lower.
    Im not doing that race. This is local to me. Sorry for misleading you. I always suggest gearing lower and we fatigue. Mine has pavement and gravel thrown in too.

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    Itís funny to read my comments from 3-4yrs ago and how I think today. Yesterday I finished the True Grit Epic. So SS endurance riding is still my jam. My nutrition needs have changed since I first commented on this thread. Calories seem less important (relative) than water. I was using 200cal/24oz TW mix for the race and around midway had a Gi revolt brewing. Switched to straight water and took on very few calories for the rest of the race and felt better for it. I need to go back and get a new baseline, as what worked in the past no longer does.

  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by solo-x View Post
    Itís funny to read my comments from 3-4yrs ago and how I think today. Yesterday I finished the True Grit Epic. So SS endurance riding is still my jam. My nutrition needs have changed since I first commented on this thread. Calories seem less important (relative) than water. I was using 200cal/24oz TW mix for the race and around midway had a Gi revolt brewing. Switched to straight water and took on very few calories for the rest of the race and felt better for it. I need to go back and get a new baseline, as what worked in the past no longer does.
    I didn't discover this thread until recently and your comment about cramping is hilarious and still true.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

  67. #67
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    one ('12 -'13?) year my custom hardtail broke earlier in the season so i raced the SM 100 on one of these badboys basically stock except nicer wheels.

    https://www.mtbr.com/product/bikes/2.../stout-29.html

    i think that whole bike cost less than i spent racing that weekend.

    i rode the whole race with no issue (finished JUST under 12 hrs) and then; jumping one of the rollers after the finish line my riser bar slipped and rotated in the stem. I ALMOST ate it in front of the whole field of folks. No idea how it didn't spin the entire race prior...

    better story (maybe?): i was at mohican (rigid SS) the year floyd landis was. no idea he was there; a buddy of mine and I are getting super stony in the woods the afternoon before the race only to walk out and see none other than floyd landis standing in the field right in front of us... it was a year or two after he was DQed from the TDF and before he started his own stoner empire. my best cycling celeb sighting ever!

  68. #68
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    I have yet to see this specifically addressed in any of the singlespeed threads, but I did not perform and exhaustive search so I apologize if this has been discussed before.

    I am curious if anyone has done a marathon race (6+ hours) on both 27.5x2.8-3.0" and 29x2.5-2.6" and, of so, what they felt was better on their SS for the race, especially if you ran into some technical trails (not all "groomed")?

  69. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeT442 View Post
    I have yet to see this specifically addressed in any of the singlespeed threads, but I did not perform and exhaustive search so I apologize if this has been discussed before.

    I am curious if anyone has done a marathon race (6+ hours) on both 27.5x2.8-3.0" and 29x2.5-2.6" and, of so, what they felt was better on their SS for the race, especially if you ran into some technical trails (not all "groomed")?
    That might be a better question in the endurance race subforum and then apply the results you get to a single speed. Do you need to comfort at an additional weight penalty? I also think it would be course dependant too. Rigid?

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  70. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeT442 View Post
    I am curious if anyone has done a marathon race (6+ hours) on both 27.5x2.8-3.0" and 29x2.5-2.6" and, of so, what they felt was better on their SS for the race, especially if you ran into some technical trails (not all "groomed")?
    I'll just flat out say it, having experience on 27.5 X 2.8 VS 29 X 2.6.

    The 29" option is the way to go.

    And go with less than 2.6 in the rear as well. You're not gonna want/need it.

    And I'm also assuming we're talking about rigid. Otherwise, if you have a suspension fork, that 2.6 in the front will be overkill as well.
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  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by teamdicky View Post
    And I'm also assuming we're talking about rigid. Otherwise, if you have a suspension fork, that 2.6 in the front will be overkill as well.
    That is fair. I assumed 2.6 was likely going to be overkill. No, I am not running rigid...I've got a 130 fork.

    Thanks for the insights

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeT442 View Post
    I have yet to see this specifically addressed in any of the singlespeed threads, but I did not perform and exhaustive search so I apologize if this has been discussed before.

    I am curious if anyone has done a marathon race (6+ hours) on both 27.5x2.8-3.0" and 29x2.5-2.6" and, of so, what they felt was better on their SS for the race, especially if you ran into some technical trails (not all "groomed")?
    I ran 29x2.6 (on Nox Farlow 29mm ID carbon wheels) for most events last year, including 8, 12 and 24 hour solo SS efforts, with a 120mm fork, on both chunky and relatively "groomed" trails. While I really like that set up, I do agree that that is somewhat overkill, and am going back to 2.35 this year. Anything to drop a little weight and rolling resistance...
    Ride more; post less...

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    I have been on 2.35 Ikons for a few years now and really like them. This year I am going to try the Rekon 2.25. Looks like old is new again...

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    **But there is no way I will ever go back to 1.95 ha!

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbell View Post
    **But there is no way I will ever go back to 1.95 ha!
    I just installed a 2.0 on my full squish just to wear it out.

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  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbell View Post
    I have been on 2.35 Ikons for a few years now and really like them. This year I am going to try the Rekon 2.25. Looks like old is new again...
    I am also a fan of the 2.35 ikon. Massive volume, very predictable, durable, and wears slowly. I use them front and back.

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  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeT442 View Post
    I am curious if anyone has done a marathon race (6+ hours) on both 27.5x2.8-3.0" and 29x2.5-2.6" and, of so, what they felt was better on their SS for the race, especially if you ran into some technical trails (not all "groomed")?
    2.25-2.6 29er will be faster than B+ anything. Nobody I know races endurance with B+ wheels and tires.

    B+ has it's place but I agree with others that endurance racing is not the spot.
    Rigid SS 29er
    SS 29+
    Fat Lefty
    SS cyclocross
    Full Sus 29er (Yuck)

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    I am also a fan of the 2.35 ikon. Massive volume, very predictable, durable, and wears slowly. I use them front and back.

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    ^^Same thoughts and setup


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  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by vaultbrad View Post
    We need velobike to chime in. He has done a number of 24hr and other endurance races

    Also slowerthensnot with his fixed great divide race experience
    Only took me 4 years to notice this thread.

    There's not much I can add that hasn't already been said. Preparation, training is the same however you do a 24 hour.

    My advice is more about survival than winning. I race as a challenge for myself, I don't really care what anyone else is doing.

    The important thing if you haven't run a 24 hour before is to remember you cannot digest food fast enough to replace what you're using, so it's a benefit to have experience at doing long rides so you know how to avoid the bonk. Eating, and more importantly drinking is key, but that's what you need to master first IMO.

    At my age I'm never going to bother the podium types, but I know it's likely I will beat much younger fitter and faster riders because they will burnout, ie bonk, because at some stage they will succumb to enthusiasm and try and stay on the wheel of a faster rider. For example I have beaten the people who have won the event previously or subsequently, not because I'm a powerhouse, but because they have had to retire.

    Festina lente - an old Roman saying for hurry slowly. It works.

    A major advantage of a rigid singlespeed is the lack of maintenance. That's important to me because I think it's not a real 24 hour unless you ride unsupported.

    It also allows me to follow another mantra "don't stop". There's no temptation to stop more than necessary if there's no one to talk to. It takes a lot of training to get the additional speed you need to make up for an extra few minutes in the pits.

    And finally - walk!

    If riding at a walking pace, it's more efficient to walk (burn less valuable energy and you feel rested).

    I also walk on those short steep pitches that are perfectly rideable but you go anaerobic in the effort. That takes some self discipline, but what you find if you don't is your legs "go away" from you - it's more about preserving your legs than not being able to do the climb. I attack such bits as usual, but the moment it becomes grunt, leap off and jog the rest of it. I do this right from the start of the race, even when I'm fresh because I have discovered that otherwise I'll do it once too often and then pay for it the rest of the race.

    Remember, they only count the laps, there's no style points for how you do them. Crawl round with your bike on your back, and it's still a lap.

    And again, don't stop.

    It's fun, I promise you.
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  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    Only took me 4 years to notice this thread.

    There's not much I can add that hasn't already been said. Preparation, training is the same however you do a 24 hour.

    My advice is more about survival than winning. I race as a challenge for myself, I don't really care what anyone else is doing.

    The important thing if you haven't run a 24 hour before is to remember you cannot digest food fast enough to replace what you're using, so it's a benefit to have experience at doing long rides so you know how to avoid the bonk. Eating, and more importantly drinking is key, but that's what you need to master first IMO.

    At my age I'm never going to bother the podium types, but I know it's likely I will beat much younger fitter and faster riders because they will burnout, ie bonk, because at some stage they will succumb to enthusiasm and try and stay on the wheel of a faster rider. For example I have beaten the people who have won the event previously or subsequently, not because I'm a powerhouse, but because they have had to retire.

    Festina lente - an old Roman saying for hurry slowly. It works.

    A major advantage of a rigid singlespeed is the lack of maintenance. That's important to me because I think it's not a real 24 hour unless you ride unsupported.

    It also allows me to follow another mantra "don't stop". There's no temptation to stop more than necessary if there's no one to talk to. It takes a lot of training to get the additional speed you need to make up for an extra few minutes in the pits.

    And finally - walk!

    If riding at a walking pace, it's more efficient to walk (burn less valuable energy and you feel rested).

    I also walk on those short steep pitches that are perfectly rideable but you go anaerobic in the effort. That takes some self discipline, but what you find if you don't is your legs "go away" from you - it's more about preserving your legs than not being able to do the climb. I attack such bits as usual, but the moment it becomes grunt, leap off and jog the rest of it. I do this right from the start of the race, even when I'm fresh because I have discovered that otherwise I'll do it once too often and then pay for it the rest of the race.

    Remember, they only count the laps, there's no style points for how you do them. Crawl round with your bike on your back, and it's still a lap.

    And again, don't stop.

    It's fun, I promise you.
    Pretty much all this^^

    I second the notion of "strategic walking", or as I put it, "conserving my matches". Burn 'em all up early, you're cooked. Plan and ride/walk for the long haul. I will strategically walk steep, power-on type spots to save my legs for later. Plus, it gives me a quick break from the bike.

    And also, don't stop..."Never get out of the boat. Absolutely, g-damn right"...
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  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by waltaz View Post
    Pretty much all this^^

    I second the notion of "strategic walking", or as I put it, "conserving my matches". Burn 'em all up early, you're cooked. Plan and ride/walk for the long haul. I will strategically walk steep, power-on type spots to save my legs for later. Plus, it gives me a quick break from the bike.

    And also, don't stop..."Never get out of the boat. Absolutely, g-damn right"...
    I found that out the hard way my first 12 hour race. I was 40 minutes behind at one point. All I was doing was stopping to get bottles and eating at camp.

    You both are also right about going anaerobic. Even in training if I push it too hard I can feel it 30-40 minutes afterwards. Like he said, the legs just leave you.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

  82. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by waltaz View Post
    ^^Same thoughts and setup


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    Some other honorable mentions that someone may enjoy if you experiment with tires.

    Racing Ralph Snakeskin 2.25- Great grip, very fast, okay volume. I just wear these out in 2 months on the rear
    Conti Race Kings Protection 2.2 - Super fast tires, good grip, big volume not as light as a ralph, but I can pinch flat these easier than other brands, which makes them hard to train on in my area. Solid tire though - one of my favorites
    Specialized Renegade Control 2.3- better bring your bike handling skills - very low profile super fast, big volume. Lowest knob height of the 3. These will drift.

    Going to try -
    Ardent Race 2.35- Got it in this week. Looks like it will be a great front tire.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

  83. #83
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    I forgot something really important.

    Rule 5: HTFU

    You need to print this out and tape it to your handlebars, so that at stupid o'clock when you can't go any further and just want to sob on your bars because you're crap and everyone else is faster and doing it easier than you (they're not), and just a little lie down is tempting you, you buck up and say "Eff it," and keep going.

    There's a couple of non training tips too. It sometimes happens you get caught short and need a poo. OK you're not supposed to, but if you do it in your shorts your race is over. Let's assume the lap is 10 miles, & you're a long way from facilities.

    This is where the polythene bag you have duct taped taped under your toptube comes in. It contains rubber gloves, toilet paper and some sealed wipes.

    It is also your first aid kit. Did I mention it's important to keep as much blood inside you as possible?

    I've been in a race where I had a bloody crash. I got attended to by the medics, but after half a wet lap the bandaging was flapping and I was leaking prodigiously - should have had stitches but didn't want to wait around so my own fault. The toilet paper makes a good blood soaking pad, and several wraps of duct tape completely sealed it. (About 6 feet of duct tape pre cut into shorter lengths wrapped around the toptube under the saddle doesn't get in the way. )

    Oh and I ride with flat pedals and wear light walking shoes. If you're on and off the bike several times in a lap, and you will be especially in the later hours, you'll get going much faster than if you had to clip in.

    And do not underestimate how low your IQ drops towards the end ... and that is why riding a rigid singlespeed is good, no decisions to make, no repairs to do, just keep moving (and rule 5).
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
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  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    I am also a fan of the 2.35 ikon. Massive volume, very predictable, durable, and wears slowly. I use them front and back.
    Being new-ish to SS I'm concerned I'll get the ikon and have an issue with climbing traction when it gets a little loose. Any advice here?

  85. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeT442 View Post
    Being new-ish to SS I'm concerned I'll get the ikon and have an issue with climbing traction when it gets a little loose. Any advice here?
    Run it backwards, it'll have slightly better grip. If you're still slipping, it's probably faster to walk/jog that section anyways.

    .

    Disagree on flat pedals. I "pull up" singlespeed far more than riding gears and I think there's a fair amount to be gained there. I don't think there's any discernible time savings in unclipping/re-clipping vs not, and good shoes aren't that uncomfortable (or slow) to hike in.

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    A lot of good information on this thread.

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timon View Post
    ...I don't think there's any discernible time savings in unclipping/re-clipping vs not, and good shoes aren't that uncomfortable (or slow) to hike in.
    Maybe not in the first few hours, but I have observed that tired riders seem to take longer than me to get going from a remount because they are trying to clip in, eg at 3am, knackered, and it's pissing rain. That's where the little increments of time start working in your favour.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
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  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeT442 View Post
    Being new-ish to SS I'm concerned I'll get the ikon and have an issue with climbing traction when it gets a little loose. Any advice here?
    Let me start by saying that's a nonissue on my local trails. Im currently running 2.2 ikons without any traction issues when climbing. The key is to keep your speed. Yeah, i know its easier said than done.

    Like someone else said, if you are griding that hard it would be faster to push and easier on the quads.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JeT442 View Post
    Being new-ish to SS I'm concerned I'll get the ikon and have an issue with climbing traction when it gets a little loose. Any advice here?
    I have a LOT of miles on the 2.35" Ikons, so speaking from experience. Traction (cornering, braking, or accelerating / climbing) is all about finding the right air pressure. I am VERY particular about it, once you have it dialed in for the larger Ikons you will find the traction is very good in all conditions and very predictable. In addition to air pressure proper power management and body position is key.

  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbell View Post
    I have a LOT of miles on the 2.35" Ikons, so speaking from experience. Traction (cornering, braking, or accelerating / climbing) is all about finding the right air pressure. I am VERY particular about it, once you have it dialed in for the larger Ikons you will find the traction is very good in all conditions and very predictable. In addition to air pressure proper power management and body position is key.
    Much better response than mine jbell. Ive ran the 2.35 for years and i usually ran 18 to 20 psi in the front. Like jbell said it has grip for days. Ive completely messed up and expected the tire to wash out after a jump and it hooked up. I cannot say enough good things about it.

    The 2.2 that came on my current bike arent even in the same league. They washed out on a slow speed turn with leaf litter above hardpack today. I feel like im on an episode of fast and furious tokyo drift. Max speed i can go is 10mph and im sliding everywhere.

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  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbell View Post
    I have a LOT of miles on the 2.35" Ikons, so speaking from experience. Traction (cornering, braking, or accelerating / climbing) is all about finding the right air pressure. I am VERY particular about it, once you have it dialed in for the larger Ikons you will find the traction is very good in all conditions and very predictable. In addition to air pressure proper power management and body position is key.
    I second all of this, and have had the same experience. The Ikons hook up way better than they seem from looking at them, in just about all conditions I ride in (muddy is not one of them). Loose gravel over hardpack and loose rock, predominately.

    I use a very good analog pressure gauge and meticulously measure my PSI before every ride. FWIW, on my SS, I run 2.35ís front and rear on Nox Farlow 30mm ID rims, and I run 16 PSI front and 20-20.5 rear. That setup hooks up very well. Iím about 180-182 before loading up, and donít rim strike with those pressures.


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  92. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    Much better response than mine jbell. Ive ran the 2.35 for years and i usually ran 18 to 20 psi in the front. Like jbell said it has grip for days. Ive completely messed up and expected the tire to wash out after a jump and it hooked up. I cannot say enough good things about it.
    Yep...you donít think that theyíre going to hook up as well as they do...but they do. Just have to trust them. I probably have >10K desert singletrack miles on them, and they do, indeed, have grip for days, and are extremely predictable. Oh, and durable...I have blown through many different tires, particularly the rear, here in AZ, and the Ikon has stood the test of time.


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  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timon View Post
    Run it backwards, it'll have slightly better grip. If you're still slipping, it's probably faster to walk/jog that section anyways.

    .

    Disagree on flat pedals. I "pull up" singlespeed far more than riding gears and I think there's a fair amount to be gained there. I don't think there's any discernible time savings in unclipping/re-clipping vs not, and good shoes aren't that uncomfortable (or slow) to hike in.
    A. Donít run it backwards; not necessary. Just drop the PSI til it hooks up. It will.

    Totally agree re flats...I canít imagine riding with them, particularly for long rides. Clipping out or in is a non-issue, and youíre not hiking THAT much in them.


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  94. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by waltaz View Post
    A. Donít run it backwards; not necessary. Just drop the PSI til it hooks up. It will.

    Totally agree re flats...I canít imagine riding with them, particularly for long rides. Clipping out or in is a non-issue, and youíre not hiking THAT much in them.


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    My guess is this is applicable for the 24 hour races. I cant imagine riding with flats either.

    I agree with walt about dropping the psi in the rear too. Keep it above the tire squirming in turns and rim strikes.

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  95. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by waltaz View Post
    I second all of this, and have had the same experience. The Ikons hook up way better than they seem from looking at them, in just about all conditions I ride in (muddy is not one of them). Loose gravel over hardpack and loose rock, predominately.

    I use a very good analog pressure gauge and meticulously measure my PSI before every ride. FWIW, on my SS, I run 2.35ís front and rear on Nox Farlow 30mm ID rims, and I run 16 PSI front and 20-20.5 rear. That setup hooks up very well. Iím about 180-182 before loading up, and donít rim strike with those pressures.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    Have you run anything else in front with an ikon for the rear? What made you land on that particular tire combo, the dual ikon? I'm thinking of a 2.4 rekon up front for the dry, moon dust days here in northern Utah as it has a little more bite to it...

  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeT442 View Post
    Have you run anything else in front with an ikon for the rear? What made you land on that particular tire combo, the dual ikon? I'm thinking of a 2.4 rekon up front for the dry, moon dust days here in northern Utah as it has a little more bite to it...
    I originally was testing hardtail rear tires, which is how I landed on the 2.20 Ikon, as it was the most durable for me in AZ. I was pinch-flatting and cutting most other rear tires, but the Ikon held up, so that was that. Iíve now gone to a 2.35 on my SS, because my rim is slightly wider, but still run a 2.20 on my geared hardtail, on a Nox Teocalli 26mm ID rim.

    Initially, I had planned on a beefier front tire. I donít even recall what I was looking at, but one day, I put a 2.35 Ikon on the front (sized up from the 2.20 I had in back for more volume in front), and immediately notice that it hooked up well in front, and was very predictable. I was sold, and have run it for years now. I think the 2.35 Ikon would rock the dry, moon dust conditions you have, because Iíve experienced the same conditions here in AZ, without issue.

    All that said, I run a 2.6 Rekon on the front of my trail bike, and like the volume, but donít feel it hooks up any better than the 2.35 Ikon. I feel that Bontrager XR2ís are very comparable to the Ikons, and I really like them. I just ran a set down on my geared hardtail (2.35 front and 2.20 rear), but replaced them with Ikons. The XR2ís are great until they wear, then they get unpredictable and sketchy. More so than the Ikons.

    Sorry for the novel...Iíve spent a shit-ton of time obsessing over this topic...LOL.


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  97. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by waltaz View Post
    Sorry for the novel...Iíve spent a shit-ton of time obsessing over this topic...LOL.
    No need to apologize, this is exactly what I was after. Thanks for providing me with the breakdown.

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    After experimenting with lots and lots of tires, I've found the 2.35 Ikons on 26-30mm rims to be one of my favorites. As said above they are predictable and just seem to work in a lot of places.

    When a little more grip is needed, the 2.35 Forekaster is another great all around tire. It grips as expected but rolls much smoother than I'd ever think possible with its tread patter.

  99. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by coke View Post
    After experimenting with lots and lots of tires, I've found the 2.35 Ikons on 26-30mm rims to be one of my favorites. As said above they are predictable and just seem to work in a lot of places.

    When a little more grip is needed, the 2.35 Forekaster is another great all around tire. It grips as expected but rolls much smoother than I'd ever think possible with its tread patter.
    I agree with both Coke and Walt. I'm a tire snob who's always looking for a better tire until I found the Ikon. There may be a faster one out there, but durability, volume, life, and grip make it an all around winner.

    My soil type is much different, but it works in a wide variety of conditions.

    As Coke said, if you need a little more grip give the Forekaster a shot. I like the X king 2.4, but it's super easy to pinch flat this tire.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

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    I have ridden the 2.35 Forkaster and really didnít see any major improvement in traction over the Ikon. I am going to give the Rekon a try this spring.

    Oh I run the Ikon in New England so they see plenty of mud, they do as well as most.

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