First Fixie

mitchj
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First Fixie

Postby mitchj » Tue Aug 04, 2015 6:33 pm

G'day all;
One of my current projects at the moment is my first fixie build. I'm using the frame/forks from the blue & white Standish SS I posted in "Post Your Pics" a while ago. I've spent the last few weeks trauling through the Fixie Forum & have learnt quite a bit. I've "flopped & chopped" some old racer bars, added a front brake & I now know about FOOT RETENTION!! (I haven't ridden a fixie yet so I'm not taking any chances!) I ordered a (very) cheap fixed cog/lock ring set off E-Bay, which arrived today. Now for a few newbie (dumb..?) questions....
1. When I screwed the cog onto my old racer wheel, there was not enough thread left for the lock ring. Does a "proper" fixie/track wheel have a longer thread to take the washer/lock nut as well?
2. Without a lock ring, will the cog want to unscrew when using my legs to slow down? I'm reluctant to Loctite it on just yet in case I decide to change wheels.
3. Do track wheels have a "stepped down" thread? I ask because the lock ring that came with my cog is a wee bit smaller-it wouldn't fit on even if there was enough thread. (Or is it just a case of "you get what you pay for"!)

I'm going to use the cog without the lock ring anyway-I wont be tearing around & I live on quiet country roads (& I have a front brake!). Hopefully I can get it finished this weekend & post some pics & a ride report. (Hopefully I still have all my skin on my shins....!)

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Derny Driver
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Re: First Fixie

Postby Derny Driver » Tue Aug 04, 2015 7:01 pm

[quote="mitchj"]
1. When I screwed the cog onto my old racer wheel, there was not enough thread left for the lock ring. Does a "proper" fixie/track wheel have a longer thread to take the washer/lock nut as well?
2. Without a lock ring, will the cog want to unscrew when using my legs to slow down? I'm reluctant to Loctite it on just yet in case I decide to change wheels.
3. Do track wheels have a "stepped down" thread? I ask because the lock ring that came with my cog is a wee bit smaller-it wouldn't fit on even if there was enough thread.
quote]

1. Yes
2. It wont come off if you put it on with a chain whip.
3. Yes the lock ring thread is slightly smaller and is left hand thread.

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KGB
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Re: First Fixie

Postby KGB » Tue Aug 04, 2015 8:08 pm

Don't loctite the cog. If you don't have a chain whip, get someone big to do a monster standing start.
Image

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Mulger bill
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Re: First Fixie

Postby Mulger bill » Tue Aug 04, 2015 8:52 pm

Derny Driver wrote:
mitchj wrote:1. When I screwed the cog onto my old racer wheel, there was not enough thread left for the lock ring. Does a "proper" fixie/track wheel have a longer thread to take the washer/lock nut as well?
2. Without a lock ring, will the cog want to unscrew when using my legs to slow down? I'm reluctant to Loctite it on just yet in case I decide to change wheels.
3. Do track wheels have a "stepped down" thread? I ask because the lock ring that came with my cog is a wee bit smaller-it wouldn't fit on even if there was enough thread.
quote]

1. Yes
2. It wont come off if you put it on with a chain whip.
3. Yes the lock ring thread is slightly smaller and is left hand thread.


KGB wrote:Don't loctite the cog. If you don't have a chain whip, get someone big to do a monster standing start.


Yep to all of this. If you don't have access to a chainwhip or friendly big unit with tree trunk thighs, go the Rotafix.
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
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mitchj
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Re: First Fixie

Postby mitchj » Tue Aug 04, 2015 10:13 pm

Thanks heaps for the reply's guys!

I do have a chain whip so I'll use that. That Rotafix idea is pretty cool though!
Actually,when I asked about the stepped down thread, I expected to be told "Of course not-don't be a cheapskate!", but now I know there's a difference, I can look to get a proper wheel. I've seen some cheap wheel-sets around so that is probably a good option!

Thanks again!

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Re: First Fixie

Postby mitchj » Fri Aug 14, 2015 9:22 pm

Well, it's finished. My first contribution to the fixie world.
Image
I had a bit of an "issue" with the rear wheel though-when I got a straight chain line, the rim ended up way over to the drive side. After trying to fix it with spacers, I realised I would have to re-dish the wheel to get the rim in the middle of the chain & seat stays. I've never tried this before so I gave it a go... & it worked! I now have a nice straight chain line & a central rim.
Image
I'd never ridden a fixie before this, so having no freewheel was something different for me-having to peddle around corners for one thing! I was quite surprised how quick you can slow right down just using your legs though. I'm looking forward to some longer rides in the near future!
I'm thinking this will be an on-going project - I'd like to find a slightly smaller frame with no brazeons, fit a chrome or alloy brake calliper, & maybe a cheap set of track or fixie wheels one day. For now though, I'm happy how it is.
A fun ride & well worth the time & effort to build! (& I still have all the skin on my shins!!)

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Re: First Fixie

Postby minhyy » Sat Aug 15, 2015 8:36 pm

glad you're enjoying fixed mitchj - just keep in the back of the mind "don't stop pedalling" otherwise you'll get a nasty kick from the pedals :!: if you need to relax, "deaden" your legs and let the cranks move your feet

what size frame do you ride by the way? I've got a fully fledged track frame I'm looking to let go of...
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Re: First Fixie

Postby mitchj » Mon Aug 17, 2015 3:31 pm

G'day minhyy;
Like this fixie, most of my bikes are made up from bits of other bikes that I "recycle" into one. I like the idea of re-using stuff when I can, as you can see from my blog. As a result, my bikes tend to be all sorts of sizes. I'm 172cm, so smaller rather than larger seems to suit me. Funds are a bit tight at the moment too, so I probably couldn't afford a fancy frame at the moment, or postage from Sydney to Renmark. But thanks anyway mate! I always keep my eyes open at my favourite tip shops, Gumtree, & around the local garage sales. You never know what's going to turn up!

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Re: First Fixie

Postby mitchj » Thu Aug 20, 2015 9:26 am

Took my new toy for it's first decent run yesterday-about 25km-on basically flat roads, & it was great! The bike ran smooth & quiet, & was quite comfortable too. It didn't take long to get used to not having any freewheel either, which was good. The 48 tooth front/16 tooth rear set up seemed like a good combination for flat areas-I'd read somewhere here that a 3:1 ratio was a good place to start, so that's what I went with. Another day I will tackle some of the more hilly areas around here-that will test me! A bit of research by me is probably needed to learn a bit more about gear ratios for different terrains. (Might even ask some questions in a new thread if I cant find the info I'm after.)
Anyway, it was a good ride on a nice day!
Image

Edit: just had a quick look around & found a suggestion for a 2:1 ratio for SS MTB in mountains-a good place to start with a roadie as well? I guess I need to remember too that what hill one goes up, one must come down again....!

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Re: First Fixie

Postby bychosis » Thu Aug 20, 2015 12:01 pm

I enjoy my fixie too, yours looks very similar to the first one i built. Was a bit small so I've built a second one.

Like you it didn't take long to get used to the lack of freewheel, but, just when you are cruising along without a care in the world you'll forget few times and get a surprise. I need more practice to be able to brake with my legs and not rely on the brakes, but I haven't ridden it much lately. Last Fri was the first time in months and I really enjoyed it.
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Re: First Fixie

Postby mitchj » Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:46 pm

G'day bichosis; good to hear your back on it! There's something about the idea of coming down a big hill with no freewheel, & with only legs & a front brake.... I haven't been there yet...!
That green bike of yours looks cool. I want to do something like that with my next build-shiny paint, coloured wheels etc.

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Re: First Fixie

Postby bychosis » Thu Aug 20, 2015 2:31 pm

I had been riding semi regularly up until we moving house when I stashed it in storage for a few weeks, time rolled on and I found the effort to get it out and pump up the tyres last week. My near flat commute is great for the fixie except for the uphill in the last few 100m to get home. I intend to try and get back to Fixed Gear Fridays for a while anyway.
bychosis (bahy-koh-sis): A mental disorder of delusions indicating impaired contact with a reality of no bicycles.

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Mulger bill
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Re: First Fixie

Postby Mulger bill » Thu Aug 20, 2015 8:16 pm

bychosis wrote:...just when you are cruising along without a care in the world you'll forget few times and get a surprise.

This.

Never ride Fixed with your brain turned off. (You can leave it in neutral tho ;-) )
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
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Gordonhooker
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Re: First Fixie

Postby Gordonhooker » Tue Sep 08, 2015 10:17 am

I love the paint job nice looking scoot.... :)
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KGB
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Re: First Fixie

Postby KGB » Tue Sep 08, 2015 10:33 am

Gearing is very personal. I commute on a pretty flat, 25km ride and use about 70" gear (front teeth divided by rear teeth x 27; this is an old method used for comparing fewer ratios, mostly on track bikes). Your 3:1 would be 3x27 which is 81 gear inches. I wouldn't ride lower than about 60" even if it was hilly - if I needed an easier gear than that then the rest of the ride would be too slow, I'd take a geared bike or at least a single speed (non fixed).
It's mostly trial and error to find the right gear for you that suits the ride terrain and the pace you want to set.
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Re: First Fixie

Postby mitchj » Tue Sep 08, 2015 6:08 pm

Gordon, the paint job is pretty average - it's how it came from the tip shop. I do like the colour combo though. My plan is to upgrade the bike a bit at a time, then swap it all over onto a slightly smaller frame. I just put some new cheap Reid wheels on it, ( yeah, I know some people wouldn't call Reid wheels an upgrade, but for what I do , they're fine. They had a 1/2 price sale - $50 delivered!), so that's a start. Bars & brakes are next hopefully!

Image

KGB, interesting stuff about the gear inches - it makes a bit of sense now. These wheels came with an 18 tooth rear cog, & being 700cx23 (26.3 inches apparently), comes in at 70 gear inches. I haven't been up any hills with these wheels yet, but I recon I could feel a difference on the flat - peddling seemed slightly easier. Like you say, trial & error. I might have to get a few more cogs one day & experiment. Maybe.....

Mulger Bill, you mentioned "never ride fixed with your brain turned off" - the other day I took my little 6 speed fold-up bike for a run & forgot to turn my fixie brain off. A couple of times I found myself braking & still peddling when going around corners & coming up to intersections! More than once I had to remind myself that I had a freewheel!

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Re: First Fixie

Postby minhyy » Tue Sep 08, 2015 6:17 pm

not necessarily a bad thing to always be pedalling, even on a bike with a freewheel - just watch out for pedal strike in the corners. I ride fixed 90% of the time now, and when I go for a long ride on the roadie it is a little bit disconcerting not being able to slow down just by resisting with the legs haha

on the flat, the deeper wheels would offer some aero advantage once you are up to speed, they would carry more of your momentum as you pedal along
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Re: First Fixie

Postby Mulger bill » Tue Sep 08, 2015 8:33 pm

mitchj wrote:Mulger Bill, you mentioned "never ride fixed with your brain turned off" - the other day I took my little 6 speed fold-up bike for a run & forgot to turn my fixie brain off. A couple of times I found myself braking & still peddling when going around corners & coming up to intersections! More than once I had to remind myself that I had a freewheel!

Lols, you aren't the only one. Definitely a safer option than the alternative.
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
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Re: First Fixie

Postby Gordonhooker » Wed Sep 09, 2015 7:36 am

mitchj wrote:Gordon, the paint job is pretty average - it's how it came from the tip shop. I do like the colour combo though. My plan is to upgrade the bike a bit at a time, then swap it all over onto a slightly smaller frame. I just put some new cheap Reid wheels on it, ( yeah, I know some people wouldn't call Reid wheels an upgrade, but for what I do , they're fine. They had a 1/2 price sale - $50 delivered!), so that's a start. Bars & brakes are next hopefully!

Image

KGB, interesting stuff about the gear inches - it makes a bit of sense now. These wheels came with an 18 tooth rear cog, & being 700cx23 (26.3 inches apparently), comes in at 70 gear inches. I haven't been up any hills with these wheels yet, but I recon I could feel a difference on the flat - peddling seemed slightly easier. Like you say, trial & error. I might have to get a few more cogs one day & experiment. Maybe.....

Mulger Bill, you mentioned "never ride fixed with your brain turned off" - the other day I took my little 6 speed fold-up bike for a run & forgot to turn my fixie brain off. A couple of times I found myself braking & still peddling when going around corners & coming up to intersections! More than once I had to remind myself that I had a freewheel!


LOL... what I mean is I like the combination of colours - that particular blue goes nicely with the white.... :) If it was me I would stick with that combination....
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Re: First Fixie

Postby bychosis » Wed Sep 09, 2015 8:30 am

I had some Reid wheels for my first fixie build. VERY heavy. Since I started enjoying the fixed ride I spend a bit more coin and upgraded the wheels. Dropped around 900grams from memory. I *think* it is easier to spin up or slow down (pedal brake) now, but it might be a placebo and I really haven't ridden the new wheels enough yet.
bychosis (bahy-koh-sis): A mental disorder of delusions indicating impaired contact with a reality of no bicycles.

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Re: First Fixie

Postby Gordonhooker » Thu Sep 10, 2015 9:45 am

bychosis wrote:I had some Reid wheels for my first fixie build. VERY heavy. Since I started enjoying the fixed ride I spend a bit more coin and upgraded the wheels. Dropped around 900grams from memory. I *think* it is easier to spin up or slow down (pedal brake) now, but it might be a placebo and I really haven't ridden the new wheels enough yet.


I had a rear wheel made for my Avanti Solo by www.coasties.com I went for the velosteel coaster brake hub and replaced the seat with a Brooks England seat. The bike is as clean as a whistle now and that is the way I like it.
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Re: First Fixie

Postby bychosis » Fri Sep 11, 2015 3:39 pm

I rode my fixie this morning. I love the way the shiny stainless spokes shimmer and shine in the light. Glad I went for those and not the black ones. I got novatech hubs, velocity rims and DT Swiss spokes. A bit budget, and a bit bling.
bychosis (bahy-koh-sis): A mental disorder of delusions indicating impaired contact with a reality of no bicycles.

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Re: First Fixie

Postby mitchj » Fri Oct 02, 2015 6:04 pm

Hey bychosis, I've embraced your idea of "Fixed Gear Fridays"! I've decided to ride my fixie to work every Friday (Thursday on RDO weeks). Today was my first "Fixie Friday" (the guys at work sorta just shook their heads...!), & it was great! I haven't ridden it for a while, so it was good to jump on it again. Great idea mate!!

(P.S. Grodon, I knew what you meant mate, I probably should have worded my reply differently... Cheers!)

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Re: First Fixie

Postby mikesbytes » Fri Oct 02, 2015 9:09 pm

DD is probably right if you used a quality cog. The cheaper cogs are sometimes a little loose and as a result the risk of coming loose due to reverse pedaling or stripping the hub are higher than with a good cog.

A potential solution is to fit a rear brake and not reverse pedal to slow down
If the R-1 rule is broken, what happens to N+1?

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Re: First Fixie

Postby bychosis » Sat Oct 03, 2015 7:12 am

mitchj wrote:Hey bychosis, I've embraced your idea of "Fixed Gear Fridays"! I've decided to ride my fixie to work every Friday (Thursday on RDO weeks). Today was my first "Fixie Friday" (the guys at work sorta just shook their heads...!), & it was great! I haven't ridden it for a while, so it was good to jump on it again. Great idea mate!!

(P.S. Grodon, I knew what you meant mate, I probably should have worded my reply differently... Cheers!)


Good call, although this week I've mixed it up due to weather, took the fixie on Tuesday and the MTB via dirt yesterday. Had a lot of rain here and leaving the MTB for later in the week allowed the trail to dry out some more.
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