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  1. #1
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    SS - Primary or Training?

    Just curious...is your Single Speed your Primary riding/racing bike or your training bike?

    I've had multiple bikes over the years and picked up a SS 29er and didn't care for it at first. I sold that bike and then got a geared 29er that I still have (EMD9) and then this year picked up a SIR9 SS as my intended "training" bike. It has now become my primary bike. I love it so much my geared bike is collecting dust. My Single Speed just flows so well on our trails and its so easy to keep my momentum up. I wouldn't say I'm that must faster on it, but certainly smoother on it.
    "...quit hitting me with your hammer"
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  2. #2
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    i'm gonna guess just about everybody in this forum is gonna say 'Primary'.

    let me be the first - Primary

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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by CHUM View Post
    i'm gonna guess just about everybody in this forum is gonna say 'Primary'.

    let me be the first - Primary

    + 1 ........ that ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ "The only way to fly" -southwest airlines
    Suicide by single speed. Work in progress.

  4. #4
    local trails rider
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    Training?

    I don't train

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  5. #5
    Got a suspension fork
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    rigid ss, it's the one and only mtb I have.
    ONE SHOX, ONE GEAR, LOTS of FUN! www.TrailFu.com My Rides

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by AGrant View Post
    Just curious...is your Single Speed your Primary riding/racing bike or your training bike?
    It's my only bike.

    I don't get racing. When I find time to be on the dirt in the woods, I'll be dammed if I'm in a ****ing hurry to get to the finish.

  7. #7
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    primary

  8. #8
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    Primary and Secondary

  9. #9
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    For mountain it's for racing and training. I train and race on my geared road bike but only train on my SS road bike. Next year I'll have a Mukluk and a 29er wheelset for it. Then I'll train with it.

  10. #10
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    My singlespeed bikes are always the first in line to be ridden. But they're both broken right now. If I had to say I train, it would be on the road bike. Training on that consists of long rides to keep weight in check. Like now. I'm going out for a ride to lose this fat I've made over the past few weeks. LSD is good. **** intervals.
    Sometimes, I question the value of my content.

  11. #11
    Suffering Mightily
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    My singlespeed is my only mountain bike. Just sold the last of my geared bikes a few weeks ago.
    Without freedom of choice, there is no creativity. Without creativity, there is no life. The body dies.

  12. #12
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    i only ride singlespeed. Though i kinda want a geared bike as a training tool. I have a lot of quick speed and power but my cardio needs improvement. Its too hard to keep your heartrate up on a ss unless your constantly going up.
    Raised in a Chicken-Coop by Chickens

  13. #13
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    I also use my SS as a primary. When I pulled up to the trails one day someone saw my bike on the roof and asked if i was training. The question had me baffled until about halfway through my ride when I realized he thought people only ride SS for training purposes.

    Truth is I train on a geared road bike.

  14. #14
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    SS was primary and only for me for a long time until I was able to recently get both a 1x9 FS and a rigid SS. Now I've been splitting it 50/50, or it averages out to about that in the big picture as some weeks I get some extra SS time and other weeks extra geared time.

    I rarely ever race but almost every non-group ride is a training ride of sorts for me. I love getting out in nature and the feeling of just cruising on a bike, but I also love being in shape, feeling fast, and especially feeling like I'm improving. If I'm going to spend all this time biking I want to at least be somewhat good at it
    Last edited by boomn; 08-15-2011 at 07:08 PM.

  15. #15
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    SS rigid has become primary to enjoy the flow of the many nearby trails.
    Definitely have a need and love of gears & FS for the steep or chunky. Am amazed by many of the photos of riders going big on the rigid SS - wow.

  16. #16
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    Singlespeed is the only mountain bike; main one for the road is the track bike. My Giant OCR C3 gets no love. The Eddy Merckx once fixed up may get ridden though...
    Quote Originally Posted by Tone's View Post
    Id scrap the passion forum all together, its a breeding ground for unicorn milkers, rainbow chasers and candy cotton farters.

  17. #17
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    Sorry but what is a geared bike?

  18. #18
    The need for singlespeed
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    I own a couple derailleurs...they're at the very bottom of the spare parts box.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by BBoy View Post
    Sorry but what is a geared bike?
    A complicated contraption that gets me up hills slower.

  20. #20
    nothing to see here
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    Single speed is the only mountain bike I have. I do have an old geared roadie which is only fit for use as an indoor trainer (downtube shifters).
    I see hills.

    I want to climb them.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by AnonymouseTech View Post
    A complicated contraption that gets me up hills slower.
    You have the same gear ratio available on a geared bike along with other even faster ratios, don't you? It might just be your mind that's holding you back!



    That said, even having the option of a lower gear makes my 99% likely to eventually use it so I understand (even though those lower gears are sometimes faster overall for me)

  22. #22
    I like turtles
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    My SS is my only MTB. I am considering a geared 29er front-suspension hard tail next year to have something a little more versatile for trips, an occasional road ride, etc.
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2018 Niner RKT 9 RDO - enduro AF

  23. #23
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    Primary, being that it's my only MTB. Was considering putting gears on it but recently decided against it. My bike is actually in fixed mode currently. Kind of funny to think my only MTB happens to be a rigid, fixed gear, 29er..It's a steed for a refined palate.

    Training is good, but time in the forest is for both the body and the soul.

  24. #24
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    I built up my Rigid SS 29er so I could "ride slower" with my father. Yeah I think you guys all know how that ended. I end up riding the geared bike on my recovery rides. Maybe once every two weeks or so.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn View Post
    You have the same gear ratio available on a geared bike along with other even faster ratios, don't you? It might just be your mind that's holding you back!

    ...

    That said, even having the option of a lower gear makes my 99% likely to eventually use it so I understand (even though those lower gears are sometimes faster overall for me)
    I like riding stunts and other technical features. My experience is that a rear mech is just another part waiting to be broken. You may have better results, but the rear mech and rear rotor are both in harm's way. Another issue is that engagement is superior with a single rear cog rather than a long chain flapping around. I care about that when ratcheting. This may not matter to many folks as much as their precious ratios, it all depends on what you're trying to do and how you go about doing it.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by raganwald View Post
    I like riding stunts and other technical features. My experience is that a rear mech is just another part waiting to be broken. You may have better results, but the rear mech and rear rotor are both in harm's way. Another issue is that engagement is superior with a single rear cog rather than a long chain flapping around. I care about that when ratcheting. This may not matter to many folks as much as their precious ratios, it all depends on what you're trying to do and how you go about doing it.
    Fair points. My trails do have lots of technical features and lots tight rocky spots and I always shoot for those but thankfully I've never damaged a rotor or derailleur (so far). As for engagement, chain length shouldn't affect that as the engagement happens on the top half of the drivetrain and the chain slack should be taken up on the bottom half.

    Gear ratios actually do have a big impact on that engagement speed though. A gear ratio that is twice as high (say 32:16 vs 32:32) has half as many degrees before engagement at the crank, and something really low like a 22:34 granny gear has to rotate nearly three times as far at the cranks as a 32:16 ratio. Geared riders tend to approach a lot of technical features in a fairly low gear compared to us SSers that are forced to work with a harder gear but are rewarded for it with better engagement.

    I prefer riding SS just like most people here, I just don't like to make an exclusive religion of it especially when I do enjoy certain things that gears can bring to the table.

  27. #27
    mikeb
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    i have three bikes...fully rigid singlespeed niner, geared 'cross and geared ht 26'er...and like to ride all of them as much as possible...i love them all for different reasons...i guess they're my steel and aluminum sister wives...
    Last edited by mikeb; 08-15-2011 at 10:29 PM.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn View Post
    You have the same gear ratio available on a geared bike along with other even faster ratios, don't you? It might just be your mind that's holding you back!



    That said, even having the option of a lower gear makes my 99% likely to eventually use it so I understand (even though those lower gears are sometimes faster overall for me)
    I know I know haha. I figure I paid for a gearie so I better use all of the gears. Same mentality I use on my SS.

  29. #29
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    I ride SS only. I have one with front suspension + easier gearing for the long epic higher country rides and a SS rigid for all my usual local rides. Not going back to gears if I can help it.

  30. #30
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    Exception here, I guess.

    I don't race anymore, so "training" isn't really the right word.

    The SS HTFUs me. (grammer, I know) I use it as strength training, so to speak. I get a full body workout. Makes me climb better, and helps me pick better lines.

    Sorry guys. If I'm gonna do a 4-6 hour epic with thousands of footies, I'll grab a geared bike.

  31. #31
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    What bought me to riding a SS rigid bike is, from what I read in MTBR, it teaches good biking fundamentals and helps on leg strength. Therefore I build one up for cheaps just for training purposes.

    By my 3rd ride on the SS rigid, I'm sold. My FS gearies is gathering dust now and I'm in the midst of selling it.

    It's just so much more fun and engaging than a FS gearies, IMHO.

    The only thing I miss is that I still can't ride as far as my FS gearies and therefore working on it.

  32. #32
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    Primary since it is the only mtb that I have! I also don't race much so I can't say that I am training. I do own a fixie (road bike) not but I consider that my training bike to make me stronger on my SS bike!!!

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn View Post
    Fair points. My trails do have lots of technical features and lots tight rocky spots and I always shoot for those but thankfully I've never damaged a rotor or derailleur (so far). As for engagement, chain length shouldn't affect that as the engagement happens on the top half of the drivetrain and the chain slack should be taken up on the bottom half.

    Gear ratios actually do have a big impact on that engagement speed though. A gear ratio that is twice as high (say 32:16 vs 32:32) has half as many degrees before engagement at the crank, and something really low like a 22:34 granny gear has to rotate nearly three times as far at the cranks as a 32:16 ratio. Geared riders tend to approach a lot of technical features in a fairly low gear compared to us SSers that are forced to work with a harder gear but are rewarded for it with better engagemen.
    A loose chain affects engagement when you first engage because the top of he chain isn't taut if you aren't applying force.

    Also, a higher gear ratio increases the engagement as perceived by the rider. Consider a hub with one point of engagement and a 22 tooth granny ring. If you have it in the 11 cog, you engage the pawl every 1/2 rotation of the cranks. If you shift to a lower gear, say a 22 tooth cog, you engage the pawl once per rotation of the cranks.

    This is why trials riders like such high engagement hubs. If you ride 18-15 all the time, you need a lot of freewheel engagement to obtain a lot of crank engagement. When shifting into a really low granny gear for ratcheting over uphill roots and obstacles, you benefit from a really high engagement hub.

    And with that, back to slack in the chain. If you spin your way up copacetic but steep climbs, engagement doesn't matter. But if your style involves ratcheting, the top of the chain will go slightly slack when you ratchet back, and that induces a slight delay when you pedal forward again.
    Last edited by raganwald; 08-16-2011 at 07:22 AM.

  34. #34
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    My only bike is SS. I have always been a masher, so it works well. The problem I'm having though is my knees. I may have to try gears and spin more to see if that helps. After all, I'd rather ride a geared bike than no bike.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by TroutBum View Post
    It's my only bike.

    I don't get racing. When I find time to be on the dirt in the woods, I'll be dammed if I'm in a ****ing hurry to get to the finish.


    Training for me is so that I can keep up with all my singlespeed buddies.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn View Post


    WTF is going on there?

    Primary for me as well. Have a 69er and a road bike for diversions or family riding but my rigid SIR9 has really endeared itself to me. It's amazing how capable the bike is.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeaBass_ View Post
    WTF is going on there?
    he is demonstrating exactly what it looks like when a mind is blown

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn View Post
    he is demonstrating exactly what it looks like when a mind is blown
    Looks like my wife when she saw the price of the niner carbon fork on the credit card bill!

  39. #39
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    Bought mine for training purposes to gain some strength, technique and stamina. Yesterday I dropped three geared riders, now I'm even considering of selling my geared hardtail.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by old'skool View Post
    The SS HTFUs me. (grammer, I know) I use it as strength training, so to speak. I get a full body workout. Makes me climb better, and helps me pick better lines.

    Sorry guys. If I'm gonna do a 4-6 hour epic with thousands of footies, I'll grab a geared bike.
    +1 my anthem X is a 1x9 and I've used it the most this year. Geared road bike comes in second. BUT, my next 2 races are on the SS. Plus, I'm racing all cross season on a SS cross bike. So, theres a shift in primary use going to happen.

  41. #41
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    My rigid SS 29er was initially for strength training & technique improvement (picking better lines, etc.).

    Then it became primary just because of the simplicity & joy of riding it.

    Now it's my "only" because my BIL broke the dog bone on my FS GT

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by bycyclist View Post
    I ride SS only. I have one with front suspension + easier gearing for the long epic higher country rides and a SS rigid for all my usual local rides. Not going back to gears if I can help it.
    +1

    Been riding my SS for a few years now as my primary. I recently bought another SS bike as a secondary.

    They're both purpose built depending on what terrain I'm riding that day. I got tired of constantly switching out gears and tires.

    I don't think I'll ever go back to a geared bike.

  43. #43
    I got nothin'
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    In the Pacific NW my SS is my primary in the winter and secondary in the summer when the higher trails open and I ride longer days. That said, I occasionally break out the SS in the summer to ride the higher trails...and it's usually more fun.
    I ride at ludicrous speed

  44. #44
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    I only ride the ss on the trails but I think it is important to push big gears on the road bike. I do 80% of my training on the road bike.

  45. #45
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    Geared bike, what is that?

  46. #46
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    You guys are using a lot of words that I don't understand. Training? Recovery?

    Can someone explain these to me so that I can join in the conversation.

  47. #47
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    Training is when you put your SS in the cargo hold of a train to get it to more trails that you can't ride to.

    Recovery is when you go to the bar after a ride with buddies for the all important after ride brew( s)/ meal combo.

    I think these are correct. Though I'm no linguist.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tone's View Post
    Id scrap the passion forum all together, its a breeding ground for unicorn milkers, rainbow chasers and candy cotton farters.

  48. #48
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    hehehe, I know I may hear about this but at the moment, my geared bike is my mainstay while my SS is for training - but I ride the SS weekly.......having to build back up to snuff after an especially brutal summer semester in grad school............hope this fall isn't as bad but I won't know until the schedule starts........
    Rigid 29er Ti SS / 29er SC Tallboy AL / Paketa Magnesium Road Bike

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr_chrome View Post
    hehehe, I know I may hear about this but at the moment, my geared bike is my mainstay while my SS is for training - but I ride the SS weekly.......having to build back up to snuff after an especially brutal summer semester in grad school............hope this fall isn't as bad but I won't know until the schedule starts........
    Okay, who let the freakin' gearies in?




















    Joking; I am doing it( terribly though).
    Quote Originally Posted by Tone's View Post
    Id scrap the passion forum all together, its a breeding ground for unicorn milkers, rainbow chasers and candy cotton farters.

  50. #50
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    Started off as a novelty... Oh yeah i have a singlespeed.... now its, i have a FS bike i ride occasionally.

    Fully rigid singlespeed 95% of the time, have'nt ridden my FS in 5 months.... the gap is getting bigger each time.
    Evil Following
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  51. #51
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    Monzie, I had it comin', I know that.......but I did ride today after last night's rain - the trail had been like powder but now it's nice and firm again.......
    Rigid 29er Ti SS / 29er SC Tallboy AL / Paketa Magnesium Road Bike

  52. #52
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    I'm going for a ride tomorrow morning and then an "epic" ride Sunday( 70+ miles). It sometimes sucks that the shortest ride with some trail will always be at least 22 miles because I'm lazy and sometimes just want to do like ten or so.


    If the ride was in the budget i would own gears( gasp!) just on the off chance I wanted to ride them sometime.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tone's View Post
    Id scrap the passion forum all together, its a breeding ground for unicorn milkers, rainbow chasers and candy cotton farters.

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