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Kite Land Talk => Website Discussion => Topic started by: david barnby on September 11, 2010, 11:32 AM



Title: bikey question
Post by: david barnby on September 11, 2010, 11:32 AM
would you go this way for a fixie? : www.republicbike.com (http://www.republicbike.com)

with three boys i learnt buying good bikes with good components made sense for the eldest - bike enjoyed and lasted until outgrown but with the other two everything gets destroyed no matter what. is abusive destruction, not fair wear and tear. youngest (12) needs bike for school run and is a user in free time.

his "mountain" bike is a good framed hand me down but needs new brake levers, cables and pads again. the derailler needs adjusting or replacing as well as recabling and the twist shifters are totalled. as the gears are the things that get buggered the most when the bike gets thrown around and i waste lots of tuning time i figure the way to go is get rid of the ability to change gear altogether - who needs it at age 12 anyway for riding along a river bank? this led me to the fixie thing which looks more fun than a video game and makes me wish i was 12 again

question is - should i do the brakes (around $25 - $40) and work out how to change the rear wheel for what they call a "flip-over" so he can ride fixed or with free wheel and what would i do with the crankset?

dont know about you guys but when i was twelve we used to do all this spanner work ourselves - seems my kids are totaled by a holed inner tube. i still enjoy it though and is great fun doing it with them

advice really appreciated - the republic bike looks cool and is right on the fashion thing but even though it is real money i know it is not enough money to mean the components are good enough to last


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: durangodriftkid on September 11, 2010, 11:40 AM
Fixies scare the crap out of me!  Ive watched my friend put himself in the hospital TWICE with his this year.  A buddy of mine just picked up a new TORK bike and it has drum brakes and internal gears!  Feels a little weird at first but its maintenance free and pretty cool once you get used to the drum brake squishiness.  Good luck with your purchase.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: david barnby on September 11, 2010, 12:24 PM
thanks - but assuming i dont want to be talked out of a fixie the interest is in how to go about getting one

back on topic

Fixies scare the crap out of me!  Ive watched my friend put himself in the hospital TWICE with his this year.  A buddy of mine just picked up a new TORK bike and it has drum brakes and internal gears!  Feels a little weird at first but its maintenance free and pretty cool once you get used to the drum brake squishiness.  Good luck with your purchase.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: Turkey9186 on September 11, 2010, 12:37 PM
Have you looked at the Breezer's or any of the Trek or Specialized single speeds.  Trek even has one that is belt drive now.

Your son's bike can be converted to a single speed.  They make a single rear "cog" to replace the cassette on the back rim.  The rear derailer is replaced by a fixed chain tensioner. Last, the inner front chain rings are removed.

Of course before you do anything, you need to watch this video! :D
Performance (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vn29DvMITu4#ws)


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: david barnby on September 11, 2010, 09:23 PM
thanks - that will provide a single speed function but not fixie function

no one know about those flip flop hubs?

video good : the road biker is like my older son and the fixie my younger two

wast of time trying to convince one to like the same as the other


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: JimB on September 11, 2010, 10:11 PM
Here's the one I'd go with:

http://www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/road/fixies/10_beatnik.html (http://www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/road/fixies/10_beatnik.html)



Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: mikenchico on September 11, 2010, 10:57 PM
Well a flip flop hub looks to run around $50 add in new spokes & nipples + $20 (?). Can you lace it yourself? It is within the realm of a competent person with a "Spanner", even I've done it. Otherwise add in shop labor. Fixie wheel sets look to run $150 - $200 in 700c, do your Mt Bikes use that size or do they run the American 26"? If 26" you'll have to lace a hub to your rim.

You can remove the inner chain wheels or leave the center one and get a smooth ring for the outer which will keep pants legs out of the sprockets, or grind the outer off yourself to make one. The largest problem your going to run into is chain alignment since your Mt Bike cranks can not be adjusted to align the sprockets, you might get lucky though and be in the ballpark on the center or outer wheel. But I'm betting Fixies are meant to get hammered on, I see your kids kicking the rear wheel up and stopping the cranks and landing with full brakes on, in that case a set of tubular chromoly BMX cranks could be a wise investment since inexpensive alloy cranks may not stand up to that abuse for long. A plus with the BMX cranks is they are adjustable for the chain alignment but look at spending $150 - $200 + on them.

Are they going to need a set of those bullhorn bars or will the Mt Bike bars keep them happy?

You could end up spending the $400 - $650 on the conversion or you could do it for $100 if you can do the work and they aren't too picky.



Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: browndude3649 on September 12, 2010, 06:37 AM
I'd say if the younger ones want fixies then they gotta learn how to do the basics. Brakes, chain breaking, flat tires, but if you can afford the repair bill so be it. I just bought a fixie with a flip-flop hub(Fuji americano). I tried riding fixed but its too scary for me. One other thing to consider is if its pretty flat where u live. If it isnt ur kids are going to be walking their fixies more than riding them.

If theirs a bike swap meet event nearby and it can wait, try getting the parts u need cheap and put them on yourself, force ur kids to watch, great bonding exp >:(
http://www.theped.com/article_details.asp?idno=32 (http://www.theped.com/article_details.asp?idno=32)
This bike shop puts 2 swap meets a year. good deals can be had.

Hey Turkey next one is Oct17, a sunday. Say isnt that the loma-prieta quake anniv.?


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: Turkey9186 on September 12, 2010, 07:46 AM
Funny, we were talking about the swap meet at work on Friday.  Last year they had some great deals on CDale clothing closeouts.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: Bob D on September 12, 2010, 04:42 PM
I haven't thought about fixed gear bikes since the 70s. The only people who rode those kinds of bikes were the ones who raced track bikes. I still think they're nuts.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: in.divi.dual on September 12, 2010, 05:14 PM
Here's the one I'd go with:
[url]http://www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/road/fixies/10_beatnik.html[/url] ([url]http://www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/road/fixies/10_beatnik.html[/url])


I'll see your nasty Jamis and raise you a Cinelli (Mystic Rats)

(http://www.cinelli.it/prodotti/biciclette/zoom/zoom_mystic_rats.jpg)



Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: JimB on September 12, 2010, 06:25 PM
So.. you are recommending that David plop down a Grand for a fixie?


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: Turkey9186 on September 12, 2010, 08:22 PM
Have you tried Bikesdirect?


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: david barnby on September 12, 2010, 09:47 PM
thanks everyone for the inputs. the pictures of the bikes are tempting (jim - a grand is only a few kites :o but no, it makes no sense)

i like the idea of converting his bike and doing it together - if he dosent like the fixie he can flipflop the wheel and if he wishes he had gears we can buy the parts and refit. by then he may have grown the extra inches his brothers have too :)

reading mikes post it looks like i need a wheel built around the flipflop hub and i make even swap out the bottom bracket and buy a suitable crank

will have to hold until i am back next weekend because i need to see the rear drop out. the suggestion (thanks) for switching to single speed with a kit including a tensioner replacing the derailier made me wonder why? seems if the bike has vertical drops outs there is no way to adjust chain tension. if this is the case i think the opportunity to waste much time and effort is too high - if it has horizontal slots we should be able to make it work


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: JimB on September 13, 2010, 01:16 AM
Surly Singleator:

http://surlybikes.com/parts/singleator/ (http://surlybikes.com/parts/singleator/)

(http://surlybikes.com/uploads/parts/CH8898.jpg)

If you want to do something cleaner White Industries makes eccentric hubs for the purpose, but $$:

http://www.whiteind.com/rearhubs/singlespeedhubs.html (http://www.whiteind.com/rearhubs/singlespeedhubs.html)


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: zippy8 on September 13, 2010, 03:30 AM
assuming i dont want to be talked out of a fixie the interest is in how to go about getting one

Perhaps the greatest service this or any other forum could offer would be to talk you out of riding a fixie.  :-[ If you're thinking about brakeless fixie then a full blown intervention might be called for.

As with all things bike-related I defer to BikeSnob NYC (http://bikesnobnyc.blogspot.com/) for guidance. His commentary on the spec. sheet (http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_wb8bAl1P-N0/SbkKcNpQGMI/AAAAAAAAGfc/O1y97IFWH90/s1600-h/Republic+Bike+|+Track+bikes,+fixed+gear+bicycles,+fixies+built+by+us+and+you.jpg) of the Republic bike:- If you're wondering why the bike's so cheap, it's because it's, well, made out of really cheap stuff.

However if your mind is made up.... converting a geared bike to fixed is a pain - the driveline just won't line up that easily. If you really want to do this and wish to know what you need then take the bike to a good bikeshop and tell them what your plans are. Put some business their way by means of payment.

Mike.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: DWayne on September 13, 2010, 06:24 AM
thanks - that will provide a single speed function but not fixie function

no one know about those flip flop hubs?

video good : the road biker is like my older son and the fixie my younger two

wast of time trying to convince one to like the same as the other

You might check this site: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/fixed-conversion.html (http://www.sheldonbrown.com/fixed-conversion.html)

Denny


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: durangodriftkid on September 13, 2010, 08:26 AM
No way!!! wayy to dangerous   8)


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: david barnby on September 14, 2010, 09:39 PM
As with all things bike-related I defer to BikeSnob NYC (http://bikesnobnyc.blogspot.com/) for guidance.

[/quote]

jeez mike - not to devalue the content or your advice, but you really read such stuff? looks more like a troll trainer website. good it is a blog. imagine that guy using his ballistic writing style in a forum!!


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: zippy8 on September 14, 2010, 11:36 PM
jeez mike - not to devalue the content or your advice, but you really read such stuff?
Oh yes. Whilst much of it is pure snark he does slip in some good stuff. Taking most of it seriously might be ill judged though ;). But he does know his bikes and he nails the Republic bike's parts list - there's more cheap in there than a budgie farm.

Mike.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: browndude3649 on September 15, 2010, 07:00 AM
hey barnaby, you shoulda put a poll on this thread.
Fixed or single speed.
I've tried fixed, and its scary dude. ???


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: Jimmer on September 15, 2010, 08:34 AM
Howdy,
Here's a forum that will shed some ideas on how to build one...
http://www.ratrodbikes.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=2468 (http://www.ratrodbikes.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=2468)

With a flip hub you can go fixie or single speed...your choice... ???


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: JimB on September 15, 2010, 09:20 PM
He's a bit of a mini-celeb here. Most of it is tongue in cheek.

David, I think you are better off getting something with better bits and bobs. Decent parts make for a better experience all round.

You can always spend quality time tinkering and a better spec makes that more enjoyable as well.


jeez mike - not to devalue the content or your advice, but you really read such stuff?
Oh yes. Whilst much of it is pure snark he does slip in some good stuff. Taking most of it seriously might be ill judged though ;). But he does know his bikes and he nails the Republic bike's parts list - there's more cheap in there than a budgie farm.

Mike.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: david barnby on September 20, 2010, 01:47 AM
thanks again all for the info - decided on flight home that if he wants a fixie he can build it himself and suffer the consequences if it doesent work out or gets too scary

so the thread started with one idea and the whole thing mutated into something more sensible

when i got back he and i spent the afternoon working out what was wrong with his existing bike (jeez, what a shame how some of the stuff is broken by clear abuse rather than accidents or wear), making a list, going shopping and then doing the work ourselves

new grips, brake levers salvaged from old bike, new front wheel, new inner tube, new brake pads and cables all round. lube and adjust of everything. took the cables off along with the gear change levers, removed the mashed front changer and left the rear floating. to change gear he has to stop and gets his hands dirty - is not a fixie or single speed. if he wants to enjoy remote control gear changing we can install the parts but he needs to know the value of them so they dont get mashed

whatever, we had a blast doing the work and his face was a picture when he arrived back from the test ride



Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: misterbleepy on September 20, 2010, 05:35 AM
I've only just seen this thread, so this advice is too late really, but as no-one has mentioned this, I'll go ahead anyway.

A while back I was in the position of having an old bike with the gears all out of kilter, and without the time to fix it, and subsequently maintain it.

I decided to replace it, but to replace it with something that would require little or no maintenance to kkep it going. So I replaced it with a bike with a hub gear system, rather than another bike with derailleur gears.

I now have a bike that only has 8 speeds, but they cover a wide enough range for my needs. All the gears are sealed in the back hub, the bike has a single front sprocket and a single rear sprocket. So far, the only maintenance I have had to do is to occasionally adjust the chain tension as the chain slowly stretches/wears over time. The gear changing has so far not missed a beat with zero maintenance in over 12 months.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: mikenchico on September 20, 2010, 06:45 AM
... I now have a bike that only has 8 speeds, but they cover a wide enough range for my needs ...

18,21,24 speeds, there is a lot of overlap on those and frankly past those racing or training how many riders use more then 8 of those gears? If you have a low enough gear to get you over the hills you may have and to let you stretch it out going down the back side it's good. I've been looking at those multi gear hubs with intrest, I don't get on the road bikes anymore but still enjoy a bit of Mt Biking. How is the low range on them, can I get close to a 1 to 1 ratio? Truthfully I could go with a pretty small front chainwheel anyway since it's just some casual single tracking and rock hopping that I do, I really don't need a top end since I'd rather enjoy the scenery.



Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: misterbleepy on September 20, 2010, 08:56 AM
How is the low range on them, can I get close to a 1 to 1 ratio?


One of the ways they describe the gear ratios in the hub gear is as a multiplier to whatever ratio you have with the selected front and rear cogs - for example, the Shimao Alfine hub I have has the following multipliers:

1st:0.527; 2nd:0.644; 3rd:0.748; 4th:0.851; 5th:1.00; 6th:1.223; 7th:1.419; 8th:1.615

There are 2 matching Alfine front chainrings available - 39 teeth and 45 teeth, and rear sprockets are available with between 18 and 22 teeth.

If you went for the lowest possible gearing (39T front and 22T rear) then 1st gear would be a little lower than 1:1 (22T on rear, and front equivalent to 20.5 teeth)

If you want to work out all the possibilities, you can use a gear ratio calculator that is pre-programmed with the various gear hubs available - I use this web based one:

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gears/internal.html (http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gears/internal.html)

If money is no object, then the 'Rolls-Royce' of gear hubs is the Rohloff - 14 evenly spaced steps over a wide range, and allegedly unbreakable. I would expect it costs over $1,000 in the USA.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: kitelover on September 20, 2010, 09:29 AM
They don't use "gear inches" anymore when talking about gearing? The tire size had to be considered also as it refered to the distance travelled with one crank revolution. I remember high gear was usually around 100-102 inches.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: misterbleepy on September 20, 2010, 09:48 AM
That web based gear calculator will output gear inches, metres of development, something called gain ratio, and the speed (in MPH or KPH) at a number of different cadences.

To me, metres of development makes the most sense (the no. of metres travelled per revolution of the pedal) but then we are a little metricated on this side of the pond ;-)


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: sbrown on September 20, 2010, 09:48 AM
It sounds like you came to a very sensible solution, David.
Your son will learn valuable skills by repairing his own bike and learning the expense of neglecting maintenance and careless use.


Title: Re: bikey question
Post by: David Kirk on October 06, 2010, 08:01 PM
I've built a couple:

(http://inlinethumb03.webshots.com/40130/2255464170068014369S600x600Q85.jpg) (http://rides.webshots.com/photo/2255464170068014369gLcpFs)
(http://inlinethumb58.webshots.com/45497/2993019360068014369S600x600Q85.jpg) (http://rides.webshots.com/photo/2993019360068014369wWcArk)