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single speed riding

pe1terpe1ter Posts: 169
edited June 2017 in Road general
after recently buying a single speed bike i was wondering how many people on this site use them for club rides / sunday blasts as i tend to sway towards the ss bike at the moment for rides perhaps its the new toy. ( it might wear of ) hope not as its such a buzz not being able to change gear approaching hills reminds me of being 9 again going everywhere on a bmx

Posts

  • chippykchippyk Posts: 529
    I've seen people do hilly 100 mile sportives on them, I recall somebody riding the Fred Whitton route on one. Personally I don't use mine for longer weekend rides, I'd not want to be faced with the climb up from Atherstone on it with 80 miles or more in my legs, but it's personal choice. When I was in good shape pre-injury I wouldn't have done the normal 17mph club run on it, but I did go on a few of the 40-50 mile 14 mph cafe rides on it.
    Personal choice.
  • fat daddyfat daddy Posts: 2,632
    I don't because I am too scared I couldn't keep up .... occasionally someone does turn up on one and only start to struggle on the long flat slight descents where the geared bikes are happy at ~30mph for 5miles but the guy on the SS is now spinning at 120-140rpm just to keep on the back ..... hills don't seem to be an issue for them
  • stevewjstevewj Posts: 235
    I use SS for all riding other than time trials and turbo interval sessions. The morale boost that comes from riding a big gear on a fast club run and not only keeping up but going away up the hills cannot be underemphasised.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    Fixed wheels used to be pretty popular for the winter club rides. Single speed - not sure I've seen one on a club run.
  • w00dsterw00dster Posts: 879
    Don't use mine for Club Rides, ours tend to be at too fast a clip for me to use the SS (average on the return leg is between 19 and 21mph which I think would be too much for the SS).
    I do use the SS for 30 mile rides with friends, they tend to be more sedate, average about 15 or 16 mph. The going uphill isn't too bad, as mentioned above, its trying to keep a fast cadence on the downhill and flats that is the problem.
    My SS is just a cheapo Quero bike though and has the gearing that came fitted, if I could be bothered to put a better crankset and larger gear I'd probably use it for the odd club ride where I know the route well - so when I get dropped I'll be able to find my way home. (mine also has cheap wheels with the plastic fairing, gets blown everywhere)
    I do love riding the SS though, mine weighs about 11kgs, cheap wheels, cheap crankset but its still a blast to ride.
  • MatthewfalleMatthewfalle Posts: 17,571
    Just use it and pedal faster.

    If you get dropped and they don't wait for you then funk them - they obviously aren't tranquillo.

    If you drop them then laugh in their faces and refuse to ride with them again as they are obviously rubbish.

    Then find cool people who laugh, smile, chat, talk, joke and enjoy life while riding. And don't wear matching clothes.

    Remember: you're better than them,
    Postby team47b » Sun Jun 28, 2015 11:53 am

    De Sisti wrote:
    This is one of the silliest threads I've come across. :lol:

    Recognition at last Matthew, well done!, a justified honour :D
    smithy21 wrote:

    He's right you know.
  • paulwoodpaulwood Posts: 215
    Have used mine a few times for club rides. Moderate pace rides are OK but once people started trying I got blown out the back. Uphill and flat was fine but the big problem was lack of recovery on long downhills. Getting to the bottom of the next climb frazzled from spinning like an idiot was never going to work.
  • pastryboypastryboy Posts: 1,385
    I could happily do long rides on my fixed gear but my club rides are pretty brutal (266w NP for 3.5 hours last time) so no chance of keeping up without a full set of gears.
  • cyclecliniccycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    I used to do club runs on my single speed. it was my fitness at the time that let me down. I should build another one really.
    http://www.thecycleclinic.co.uk -wheel building and other stuff.
  • JesseDJesseD Posts: 1,961
    winter club runs on fixed are fine, you just work harder to stay with the group.

    I sold my fixed Spesh Langster last year and instantly regretted it, ran a 74 inch gear and it was absolutely fine for club runs, yes I span out on the descents but eh ho that's part of the fun, was good dropping people on the short sharp climbs through!

    Not sure there is any benefit to single speed though?
    Obsessed is a word used by the lazy to describe the dedicated!
  • frozefroze Posts: 147
    There isn't any benefit in a single speed bike other than it's the latest fad. You can take a multi speed bike and make it a single speed bike for free...simply leave the bike in one gear all the time and only use the rear brake!
  • MatthewfalleMatthewfalle Posts: 17,571
    froze wrote:
    There isn't any benefit in a single speed bike other than it's the latest fad. You can take a multi speed bike and make it a single speed bike for free...simply leave the bike in one gear all the time and only use the rear brake!

    Ooh - now this is a thread all in itself.

    Or is it just trolling?
    Postby team47b » Sun Jun 28, 2015 11:53 am

    De Sisti wrote:
    This is one of the silliest threads I've come across. :lol:

    Recognition at last Matthew, well done!, a justified honour :D
    smithy21 wrote:

    He's right you know.
  • fat daddyfat daddy Posts: 2,632
    or its just opinion ..... I like SS .... for some reason the riding is just free'er, you don't think that you think about changing gears, but you do. only having one gear means you just pedal its strangly relaxing ..... there is less noise, less maintanence, less bulk and stuff, the drive chain feels more efficient.

    AND you suddenly realise you don't need gears

    I thouroughly enjoy riding my SS .... especially as its a CX bikeas well, so the lot gets covered in mud and doesn't require constant maintanence to keep it working

    It is like being a kid again, just jump on bike, ride
  • debelidebeli Posts: 582
    I rode fixed only until I graduated away from my front-wheel-drive trike onto a singlespeed bicycle with stabilisers.

    I mastered the whole balancing thing but stayed with singlespeed until I was about nine and got a 3-speed.

    5-speed came later, along with dropped bars.

    I made my first (and current) fixie out of idle curiosity and an old 531 Claud Butler some years ago.

    Since then it has been both fixed and single and has gained and lost one-geared siblings along the way. I still ride with gears, on and off road. I still enjoy gears, but that is not to say that having only one ratio is in any way bad or less valid or more faddish. Either with or without freewheel.

    I am slower on fixed or singlespeed across any sort of terrain with hills. Depending on the gearing, a fixed or singlespeed will have a 'sweet range' of speed and gradient that suit it. Usually around the 19-21mph area if you have 67-69" gearing, which seems about standard.

    I am undoubtedly fastest (or least slow) on a modern bike with gears, but I wouldn't knock fixed and s/s or accuse their riders of fad-following or posing. Both have their own joys and quirks. Both are a huge laugh in the right conditions.

    Singlespeed does have an advantage over fixed if you are trying to keep up with others on fast descents. Even when I am fit and supple, much over 31mph is pushing it on my fixie and at that speed I would not want to be near other riders... but on a singlespeed the velocity is limited only by the gradient and my nerves.

    Club runs will usually be faster with gears, but they may not be as much fun.
  • ShepherdShepherd Posts: 1
    I'm planning to ride my Pompino (66'' SS - don't like descending fixed) as my main winter bike, for all the type of riding I do on the carbon ultegra bike. Have taken it out on 50 mile rides with the club a few times just to suss out the pace/gradient etc and found it to be, of course, different but fine overall. Fun spinning like crazy to get the pace up. Averaging 17-18 on it at the moment. Hill climbs definitely more challenging, but there's a real joy to be had riding one gear. I noticed more muscle strain in my back the next day, probably from more time spent out of the saddle grinding up hills!

    I love the simple purity of a singlespeed. :D
  • Mr _TibbsMr _Tibbs Posts: 46
    Respect to those who do. I'm nowhere near fit enough to keep up with even a slow club on my SS and on the hills, well, I hate to think.
  • yiannismyiannism Posts: 344
    I cant literally find any good reason to drive SS or even worse fixed, especially if you live on hilly place. You just destroying your knees. Now as far as about maintenance please! 1 full service per year? or some gear adjustments every now and then?
  • Mr _TibbsMr _Tibbs Posts: 46
    yiannism wrote:
    I cant literally find any good reason to drive SS or even worse fixed, especially if you live on hilly place. You just destroying your knees. Now as far as about maintenance please! 1 full service per year? or some gear adjustments every now and then?
    To be fair, it will depend on frequency, distance, environment and also fitness. I ride the SS once a week in anger and more often for simple cruises to the coffee shop. I ride a lot slower, in a different style and find that it feels like a real break from the rest of my riding.
    Apart from that...one service a year, really? My road bike is serviced almost every Month and fettled every other week.

    At least it feels that way, it's always on the stand.
  • Alex99Alex99 Posts: 1,436
      Shepherd wrote:
      I'm planning to ride my Pompino (66'' SS - don't like descending fixed) as my main winter bike, for all the type of riding I do on the carbon ultegra bike. Have taken it out on 50 mile rides with the club a few times just to suss out the pace/gradient etc and found it to be, of course, different but fine overall. Fun spinning like crazy to get the pace up. Averaging 17-18 on it at the moment. Hill climbs definitely more challenging, but there's a real joy to be had riding one gear. I noticed more muscle strain in my back the next day, probably from more time spent out of the saddle grinding up hills!

      I love the simple purity of a singlespeed. :D

      OK, some see it as purity. I see it more as contrived. Why not unicycle? It's using a less effective tool for the job. You could ride a mountain bike on the road and it will be harder and/or slower. Pretty sure the supposed training advantages have been de-bunked. But, if you live in a flat area, you probably can get away with it without too much disadvantage as long as there isn't any wind.
    • yiannismyiannism Posts: 344
      Mr _Tibbs wrote:
      yiannism wrote:
      I cant literally find any good reason to drive SS or even worse fixed, especially if you live on hilly place. You just destroying your knees. Now as far as about maintenance please! 1 full service per year? or some gear adjustments every now and then?
      To be fair, it will depend on frequency, distance, environment and also fitness. I ride the SS once a week in anger and more often for simple cruises to the coffee shop. I ride a lot slower, in a different style and find that it feels like a real break from the rest of my riding.
      Apart from that...one service a year, really? My road bike is serviced almost every Month and fettled every other week.

      At least it feels that way, it's always on the stand.

      I have already ride 3000 km on my road bike (plus some more on my MTB), and i did only one service, but i check my bicycle before every ride. I didnt felt that i need more than lubricate my chain, some gear adjustments and a tire presure. What do you service one in a month?

      I can understand to use SS, if you live in a flat area, maybe you dont need gears, but not in Cyprus, everything is hilly here. Even our flat rides on 70km they have 700m elevation. How i can servive with a SS? having already some pains on my knee? and whats the reason to make my life harder? to prove what to who?
    • milemuncher1milemuncher1 Posts: 1,472
      As long as you get your gear inches right for the expected terrain, SS / fixed is fine for any ride, if you can achieve the power required to get round a given ride, with a given ratio.

      I'm fine with people using SS / fixed on any of my rides. The riders just have to remember that 'sympathy' is a word in the dictionary, located between 'sh!t' and 'syphilis', if they end up walking on the way up a hill, or on the brakes all the time down a hill, that's their problem.
    • Mr _TibbsMr _Tibbs Posts: 46
      yiannism wrote:
      Mr _Tibbs wrote:
      yiannism wrote:
      I cant literally find any good reason to drive SS or even worse fixed, especially if you live on hilly place. You just destroying your knees. Now as far as about maintenance please! 1 full service per year? or some gear adjustments every now and then?
      To be fair, it will depend on frequency, distance, environment and also fitness. I ride the SS once a week in anger and more often for simple cruises to the coffee shop. I ride a lot slower, in a different style and find that it feels like a real break from the rest of my riding.
      Apart from that...one service a year, really? My road bike is serviced almost every Month and fettled every other week.

      At least it feels that way, it's always on the stand.

      I have already ride 3000 km on my road bike (plus some more on my MTB), and i did only one service, but i check my bicycle before every ride. I didnt felt that i need more than lubricate my chain, some gear adjustments and a tire presure. What do you service one in a month?

      I can understand to use SS, if you live in a flat area, maybe you dont need gears, but not in Cyprus, everything is hilly here. Even our flat rides on 70km they have 700m elevation. How i can servive with a SS? having already some pains on my knee? and whats the reason to make my life harder? to prove what to who?

      Its not always every month but it feels that way. I'm just a bit of a neat freak so tend to fuss over stripping stuff down, checking for wear and lubing. But that's just me.

      As far as the SS thing, you are right its not for everyone. I only use mine on relatively flat routes but i cant help but respect those that manage club rides on them.

      It must be boiling riding this time of the year in Cyprus, Respect for that.
    • yiannismyiannism Posts: 344

      It must be boiling riding this time of the year in Cyprus, Respect for that.


      It is, we start our weekend rides at 6:30, and finish not later than 10:30. At nights in Nicosia actually is fine, but we cant go far. Next 2 months will be even worse, with days with 40+. God i hate Cyprus summer!
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