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Track bike on the road - complete newbie question

YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
edited December 2010 in Road general
Morning All

Just a quick question:

Am currently running a Charge Plug alongside the road bikes that I love to bits so am fully addicted to single speeding.

Being a form over function obsessed man, I love the shape of pure track bikes and so was pondering about getting one, sorting a out front brake (ie fitting a set of road carbon forks with front brake, brake suitable rims) and running it on the road.

I understand that track bikes are very quick steering but was hoping that the slightly slower geometry of the road forks (a degree or two at the most probably) would slow the steering down from "oh my God I'm going to die" to good, fast, twitchy, which I like (time trial bike fast steering is ok in my book).

Questions are:

1. Is this a pointless and stupid idea and should I track down a suitably looking cool road frame and convert that (I have all the bits in the Big Box of Spares in the garage that I would need);

2. Can I run a Mavic Kyserium Elite rear wheel for those "I'm too tired to run a fixie" moments or is the hub spacing out? Plan is to eventually track down a set of deep rim wheels (probably Planet X 50s as I have some already) to use: purely form over function again.

3. Has this been done before and have the people who have done it before soon regretted it?

Any helpful comments would be very much appreciated.

Kind regards



  • Hub spacing is out on a pure track bike for the road wheels. Something like the Cinelli Mash(below) is a Vigorelli track bike in street clothes. Allegedly the fork is drilled and plugged so fitting a brake is a careful drill job.

    Help I'm Being Oppressed
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    Looking promising - ta muchly.

    Can you get a flip flop track hub or again, hub spacing out?
  • maybe wrong but almost certain you can. in fact the goldtec rear hub ive just bought gave me the option of what spacing i wanted, and thats a flip flop.

    think its only a couple of spacers etc
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    And then lace to Kyserium rim?

    You can see where I'm heading here can't you? :)
  • As long as you only want singlespeed you're fine, many track hubs are double sided and you can just screw a BMX freewheel on.
    Help I'm Being Oppressed
  • Monty DogMonty Dog Posts: 20,614
    Most track frames come with a front fork drilled for a brake - the main problem with track geometry is front wheel overlap - one stalled tight turn and you can end up in a heap. Suggest you go for a road-going single-speed frame which has a geometry suited to the road rather than the compromise of a track frame modified for the road. This was all we had a few years ago before the fixed/SS fad took off - no need these days.

    A Ksyrium wheel wouldn't fit a track / singlespeed frame - the hub is too wide. If you fancy deep rim wheels go for alloy rims B43s or Velocity Deep vees. P-X or any carbon rim is simply too fragile for day-2-day use. As said, get a flip-flop hub with a freewheel on one side
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
  • Oddjob62Oddjob62 Posts: 1,056
    Don't worry about twitchy steering. As MontyDog says there's plenty of variety these days. My ride (see sig) is a "track" frame but quite relaxed (it's got a rear brake mount so it's not a "proper" track frame).

    I've never had any issue with the steering and i ride round London lots, and i'm FAR from being an expert cyclist.
    As yet unnamed (Dolan Seta)
    Joelle (Focus Expert SRAM)
  • VelonutterVelonutter Posts: 4,749 Lives Here
    I ride my Giant Omnium Track frame on the road and it is great fun, I used to ride 30 years ago my GB track frames that had tiny clearances and a very short wheel base and I rode that all over the south downs and never had a moment of concern.

    Go and enjoy! 8)
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    That's all cool - thankyou very much everyone for your help.

    I think that Velonutter has swung it for - track bike on the road here we come!

    I have been looking at the Felt TK3 2011 - looks (in my eyes at least) seriously nice, fork is already drileld for a front brake, has the aero rims that I'm after - also available at Evans (hmmm, I know) but therefore on Ride 2 Work scheme :)

    Has anyone tried one of these or have any other suggestions at to other possible choices?

    Around the £700 mark is the most that I want to go - any suggestions again extremely gratefully received.

    Thankyou very much!

  • TommyEssTommyEss Posts: 1,855
    A friend of mine got the TK3 for track racing, and would ride it to the track before taking the brake off and racing.

    His first comment was that it was a bit heavier than he was expecting/hoping for - though he's 6'3" so he's got a pretty large frame.

    My thoughts were, looks good from a distance, but has fugly clunky welding. May not be an issue for you.

    Fuji Track 1.0 will also take a front brake - think it's on deal at Velodrome Shop at the moment, $600 (in Oz - no pound sign, sorry!)

    As will the Cinelli Vigorelli, circa $750, same shop (discounts at the moment, no idea why!?)

    Failing that, Felt and others do track-ish geometry for the road, i.e. with brakes already there, and most, if not all, come with flip/flop rear fixed and free. Look for the Felt Curbside or Brougham or something like that - a lot seem to be flat bar though, no idea why!

    Cannondale Synapse 105, Giant Defy 3, Giant Omnium, Giant Trance X2, EMC R1.0, Ridgeback Platinum, On One Il Pompino...
  • pianomanpianoman Posts: 706
    Is it possible to build up a TT bike based on something like the Giant Omnium? I see this frame listed in various places as a TT frame but in others as a track one. Surely the only issue is the horizontal dropouts (which the likes of the Planet X Stealth has anyway). Or am I missing something?
  • TommyEssTommyEss Posts: 1,855
    I've just got an Omnium as it goes - frame-wise, it's like their aluminium TT frame, albeit with a shorter wheelbase and probably slightly tighter geometry.

    Yes, some TT bikes use horizontal dropouts to allow the rear wheel to get close to the seat tube, but the main problem with the Omnium frame is; no rear derailleur mount, no front derailleur mount (and it's probably a bit of an awkward shape to get a band-on to work), and no brake mounts (fork is undrilled)

    So, with that all said, I don't think you'd manage it - but take a look for their TT frames if you like the look of it.
    Cannondale Synapse 105, Giant Defy 3, Giant Omnium, Giant Trance X2, EMC R1.0, Ridgeback Platinum, On One Il Pompino...
  • I've just bought a V-Sport track bike & I'm doing the exact same thing, e.g. building up for road use.,
    2012 Cannondale Synapse
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