Fixed gear

Discussion in 'Bikes and Buying Advice - What Bike?' started by Black knight, 15 May 2010.

  1. Black knight

    Black knight Active Member

    How tough is fixed gear?

    Been looking at this

    I like the thought of simplicity, minimal maintaince and eventually getting fitter but am worried it's just going to be too tough.

    Do i go with the hybrid instead instead

    This bike is probably muchos overkill for what i'll use it for. Maily 3-6 mile rides around the town though i'd like to think I'll get out and do some circa 20 mile rides eventually.

    Can get a test ride around the car park but I don't think that will be enough for me to really see if it's suitable.
  2. Fab Foodie

    Fab Foodie hanging-on in quiet desperation ...

    Fixed gear is easy.
    It takes a short while you get your brain trained to keep pedalling and keep clear of raised kerbs.
    After that you'll wonder why we need so many gears. Fixed gives more control in traffic and flies up hills in a way that's hard to believe.
    The boardman fixed is sexy in a way that the hybrid will never be.
    For my money, go with the fixie. You'll not regret it.
  3. RedBike

    RedBike New Member

    Beside the road
    I find that once the fixie is up to speed it seems a lot more efficient than a geared bike. So much so that provided no big hills are involved I prefer the fixie for long rides over the geared bike.

    It is quite remarkable the way that a fixed wheel bike climbs.
  4. OP
    Black knight

    Black knight Active Member


    Need to get a proper test ride really. I think a mate of mine has one, I might see if I can borrow his.
  5. I honestly can't imagine riding a fixed bike,I must go through nearly all the gears on my bike on the commute-bar a couple of the higher ones.
    I like to drop to a low gear for setting off at lights and so on,must be hard work once you stop to get going again?
    Wonder if Fossy will let me have a go of his?:troll:
  6. RedBike

    RedBike New Member

    Beside the road
    Kind off. Once the bikes started rolling being so light it soon picks up speed.
  7. longers

    longers Veteran

    Only if you've got clean shoes on.
  8. Oh yes,forgor about that:biggrin: I'm sure i can scrape the worst of the muck off;)
  9. Alien8

    Alien8 Senior Moment

    Unless you've got some insane hills a fixed shouldn't be a problem once you get used to it.

    Just remember to get your standing foot properly clipped in before you put the power down.

    That Boardman looks okay - 48x18 is a pretty easy gear.
  10. GrasB

    GrasB Veteran

    Nr Cambridge
    Or just pedal appropriately considering that it's not clipped in. I often ride away from the lights with one leg clipped the other unclipped. This is one reason I alternate legs for pulling away. It puts far more pressure on one leg than the other.
  11. dave r

    dave r Dunking Diddy Dave Pedalling Pensioner

    Holbrooks Coventry
    I use my Pearson for commuting, general running around and winter club runs, great fun and very good for the too and from work routine.

  12. kyuss

    kyuss Veteran

    I bought my first fixed about 2 years ago. I needed something cheap that I wouldn't mind chaining up outside while I went shopping/to the pub etc and something that didn't take much maintenance. If I'm honest though, the current fashion for fixed bikes played a part (as did the £220 price tag).

    There's no denying it was difficult at first. Not necessarily getting up hills, but training your brain and legs to keep going even when you really want to freewheel. But it doesn't take long to get used to. I had a couple of dodgy moments but after a couple of weeks I found going back to gears felt a bit strange. Obviously some hills can be a struggle but not as much as you'd think. In fact going downhill is more of a struggle than up (you'll need to learn to spin or you'll get spat out of of the saddle). But for a 6 mile commute it'll be ideal as will the odd 20-30 mile ride unless you've got some proper mountains in the way.

    I've become a much stronger and efficient rider now that I can't chicken out and change down a gear. I bought a new groupset for my summer geared bike a year ago and although I got it for a great price the 53/39 chainset and 11/23 casette worried me initially, especially since I struggled on a few of my local hills with the 52/38 and 12/26 I was running previously. I was expecting to have to change the cassette for something easier, but after a year of riding the fixed first time out on the geared bike I was flying up hills that I'd previous been walking up with the lower gear.

    So I guess, in summary, sure, expect it to feel a bit different at first, and get ready to dig in on the hills, but it doesn't hurt as much as you'd imagine and it will definitely make you a stronger/more efficient rider. Most importantly though, fixed is fun.
  13. ASC1951

    ASC1951 Guru

    I appreciate that in Cambridge you have to go a dozen miles to get 100m above sea level, but I still wouldn't call 73" 'an easy* gear.'

    Go for the fixed, Black Knight! I wouldn't want one as my only bike, but they are great fun, improve your technique and give you better acceleration and control in traffic. You can do long rides on them - I do the occasional 100 miler on mine and Piedwagtail here seems to do all his on his fixed Pompino - but they really come into their own for exactly the sort of riding you propose.

    [*I ride 72" up here in Yorkshire and I can assure you it is a truly heroic gear. :biggrin: ]
  14. OP
    Black knight

    Black knight Active Member

    LOL, cheers all.

    I'll be putting a 'new bike' post up in the next week or two. I'll keep you under suspenders as to what i'll go for!
  15. GrasB

    GrasB Veteran

    Nr Cambridge
    73" = 13mph @ 60 rpm which is a fairly common cadence/speed combination for a normal commuter/utilitarian cyclist going from A to B around Cambridge. This is confirmed by the fact when I change cassettes for people it's normally because the chain is slipping on the 13/14t sprocket & the 18/19t sprocket which on a 36/48 chainrings is around the 70" mark.
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