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SS vs Road Bike Help

mr_eddymr_eddy Posts: 764
edited September 2012 in Commuting general
Ok so I have a Cube Peloton Race road bike, I purchased in Feb this year. Initially I intended to do some big Sunday rides but up to now its sole purpose has been doing the 9 mile round trip to and from work. I occasionally do the odd Sunday country road ride of about 20 miles or so.

I have always liked the idea of building my own bike and given the above I thought a single speed with Flip/Flop rear hub would be a good project for me to start with, I also want to lose some more weight but I can't afford any more riding time than I currently do so I thought a SS would make me work harder (without the temptation of easier gears) and burn more calories etc.

I would have to fund the project by selling my Cube road bike, with this in mind I wanted to ask a few questions hopefully somebody who has a SS can answer.

1. Firstly I ride quite fast I would say average about 17mph with peaks of 22mph is this possible with a 46t / 18t F&R setup without having to spin up my legs like a washing machine ?

2. Secondly my route is mostly flat however there is a section of road that has a short 400m hill with a 1:10 gradient do you think this sort of hill would be doable on a SS, I am a keen 30yr old cyclist with good fitness level ?

3. Thirdly do you think a SS would still be ok for the odd flat-ish bike ride of 20-30 miles ?

4. Finally are there any other considerations that I need to look into ?

I know these questions may seem a bit random but I just need so validation before I commit to putting my Cube in the classifieds.

Thanks

Posts

  • 1. Not sure, but probably - i always found i was too low geared for speed on the flat rather than having any problems on hills...but think i was only a 44 on the front. Will check and let you know
    2.Yes, i was always surprised what was possible over short sections
    3.yes - used to commute 27miles home regularly, very flat commute though.

    But...'flat' is a very relative term, nothing will tell you how the land really lies like a single speed.

    This may sound like an obvious suggestion, so apologies if you've already tried it, but it helped me - use your road bike as reference, do some back to back commutes in different ratios without changing for the whole ride, that'll soon tell you what the most suitable gearing will be

    cheers

    Jim
  • mr_eddy wrote:
    9 mile round trip to and from work
    ...
    I ride quite fast I would say average about 17mph with peaks of 22mph

    That's not even close to "quite fast" especially for such short distance
  • mr_eddy wrote:
    Ok so I have a Cube Peloton Race road bike, I purchased in Feb this year. Initially I intended to do some big Sunday rides but up to now its sole purpose has been doing the 9 mile round trip to and from work. I occasionally do the odd Sunday country road ride of about 20 miles or so.

    I have always liked the idea of building my own bike and given the above I thought a single speed with Flip/Flop rear hub would be a good project for me to start with, I also want to lose some more weight but I can't afford any more riding time than I currently do so I thought a SS would make me work harder (without the temptation of easier gears) and burn more calories etc.

    I would have to fund the project by selling my Cube road bike, with this in mind I wanted to ask a few questions hopefully somebody who has a SS can answer.

    1. Firstly I ride quite fast I would say average about 17mph with peaks of 22mph is this possible with a 46t / 18t F&R setup without having to spin up my legs like a washing machine ?

    2. Secondly my route is mostly flat however there is a section of road that has a short 400m hill with a 1:10 gradient do you think this sort of hill would be doable on a SS, I am a keen 30yr old cyclist with good fitness level ?

    3. Thirdly do you think a SS would still be ok for the odd flat-ish bike ride of 20-30 miles ?

    4. Finally are there any other considerations that I need to look into ?

    I know these questions may seem a bit random but I just need so validation before I commit to putting my Cube in the classifieds.

    Thanks

    Why are you selling the cube? It doesn't sound like you've really given it a fair crack. Do you have other bikes? I only ask because you say you are a 'keen' cyclist yet only do the odd 20 mile ride on a Sunday. A keen cyclist would be covering anywhere from 30 to 100+miles on their weekend ride. I appreciate that you say finding time is difficult, but there's always the option of getting up early. I was often up at 5am over the summer, meant I could get in a long ride and some time be home before the wife was even up. I don't mean to sound critical, I just think it's a shame to see a bike purchased in Feb and and then sold the same year.

    Ideally you should get out and use the Cube properly and then see if you can afford to buy an SS additionally. I run an SS as a commuter and 2 roadies for summer/winter riding. SS is ideal for commuting and will make you stronger, especially if you pick a decent gear ratio. This may take some experimentation. I run 50x17 over 7 miles or so in pan flat London. I average between 16 and 20mph but that's with heavy London traffic and stop/start. Can hit 30 odd before spinning out, and happily cruise at 22/24mph. 48x18 may be a bit spinny.

    One of the forumites (Attica) was training on his SS up until about June last year, that's hilly rides of 70 odd miles with no gears, so it's doable.

    Building your own will be a good experience but might work out more expensive. I had mine built up for me, but chose the frame and all the parts, and I love it. It's a Kinesis Decade with Campagnolo, Cinelli, Miche and White Industries kit, Halo wheels. Cost me about £700.
    2015 Canyon Aeroad CF SLX
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  • mr_eddy wrote:
    Ok so I have a Cube Peloton Race road bike, I purchased in Feb this year. Initially I intended to do some big Sunday rides but up to now its sole purpose has been doing the 9 mile round trip to and from work. I occasionally do the odd Sunday country road ride of about 20 miles or so.

    I have always liked the idea of building my own bike and given the above I thought a single speed with Flip/Flop rear hub would be a good project for me to start with, I also want to lose some more weight but I can't afford any more riding time than I currently do so I thought a SS would make me work harder (without the temptation of easier gears) and burn more calories etc.

    I would have to fund the project by selling my Cube road bike, with this in mind I wanted to ask a few questions hopefully somebody who has a SS can answer.
    mr_eddy wrote:
    1. Firstly I ride quite fast I would say average about 17mph with peaks of 22mph is this possible with a 46t / 18t F&R setup without having to spin up my legs like a washing machine ?

    That would be a on the lower side of norm 70 to 80 inches being norm 46-18 giving 70in see http://software.bareknucklebrigade.com/rabbit.applet.html
    mr_eddy wrote:
    2. Secondly my route is mostly flat however there is a section of road that has a short 400m hill with a 1:10 gradient do you think this sort of hill would be doable on a SS, I am a keen 30yr old cyclist with good fitness level ?

    um try it! seriously people are differnent, some can grind up hills at 20 rpm others need higher revs.
    mr_eddy wrote:
    3. Thirdly do you think a SS would still be ok for the odd flat-ish bike ride of 20-30 miles ?

    I do 30/40 miles into Surrey Hills as long as your not dumb it's fine.
    mr_eddy wrote:
    I know these questions may seem a bit random but I just need so validation before I commit to putting my Cube in the classifieds.

    Thanks

    I did get rid of a old roadie since I didn't use it, But I work funny hours and it was always 2nd fiddle to the MTB.

    i love having the SS I do use it for longer commutes ie 20 miles run to work etc.
  • mr_eddymr_eddy Posts: 764
    Thanks for all the advice.

    I will try using a few different ratio's on the road bike to get an idea.

    In answer to me not being a keen cyclist I think that is unfair. Just because I don't do 50 mile rides all the time does not mean I am not a keen cyclist, I am on my bike pretty much everyday. I commute by bike every day, I go shopping by bike, I visit friends and family by bike and I contribute to bike forums I would say that this makes me a keen cyclist. I live in a urban area so as such I don't rack up huge mileage but I chose the bike over the car every time. I think this makes me a keen cyclist, why else would I choose pedals rather than A/C and a comfy seat lol :)

    I know it seems like a short time to keep a bike but I really do think that a bike with 20spd compact roadie gearing is better suited to someone who does sportives or races. I feel someone else can use it for something its better at.

    This is why I think a SS may be better, they seem to be tailor made for short fast commutes and urban traffic.

    Another thing I forgot to mention is I have recently injured my back (long story) and since then drop bar bikes like my Cube seem to make things worse. I thought a flat bar SS commuter with slightly more upright position may help.

    Thanks
  • mr_eddymr_eddy Posts: 764
    Also I should explain that my average of 17-22mph at the moment is through traffic with several stops at traffic lights, on some flat sections there are those road speed sign things that show your speed, I normally flash up at around 25mph on these bits of the road. I am usually in the highest front chainset 50t and second/third to smallest which I think is about 14t. This is fine for almost all situations, the initial hill I have to tackle may be a bit tricky but should still be doable with some out of the seat action.

    I will look into some options

    Thanks
  • jeepiejeepie Posts: 495
    How about supplementing your Cube with a grab and go bike like http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Retro-Single- ... 500wt_1414

    I too am under massive time pressures and it's hard to get out on my road bike but when I do I love it. Try to give the Cube a bit more time and you may warm to it... Terrible shame to part with it so soon. The comfort will come as you build up your core muscles to carry you shouders and upper torso.
  • mr_eddy wrote:
    9 mile round trip to and from work
    ...
    I ride quite fast I would say average about 17mph with peaks of 22mph

    That's not even close to "quite fast" especially for such short distance

    its 'quite fast' to the OP, billy big balls.
  • mr_eddy wrote:
    9 mile round trip to and from work
    ...
    I ride quite fast I would say average about 17mph with peaks of 22mph

    That's not even close to "quite fast" especially for such short distance

    its 'quite fast' to the OP, billy big balls.

    indeed at 16/18 mph average so says strava very few pass by.

    ie internet bragging speed and real speed are not the same.
  • mr_eddy wrote:
    1. Firstly I ride quite fast I would say average about 17mph with peaks of 22mph is this possible with a 46t / 18t F&R setup without having to spin up my legs like a washing machine ?

    2. Secondly my route is mostly flat however there is a section of road that has a short 400m hill with a 1:10 gradient do you think this sort of hill would be doable on a SS, I am a keen 30yr old cyclist with good fitness level ?

    3. Thirdly do you think a SS would still be ok for the odd flat-ish bike ride of 20-30 miles ?

    4. Finally are there any other considerations that I need to look into ?
    1. Yeah, easy. 17mph is only 85rpm. http://www.machars.net/bikecalc.htm

    2. Probably. Try it.

    3. Probably. Try it. Or keep the Cube for your longer rides.

    4. If it's a commuter I'd always say, can you put mudguards on it, can you put a rack on it?
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