The place for fixies and other rides without gears
I am riding with a friend from Melbourne to Sydney fixed on boxing day. I will be sending supplies to motels up the way and am going to allow 12 days. I currenty ride a masi fixed speciale with the standard setup (seguno-messenger cranks, generic deep rims, 42/16 rings etc) about 50 kilometres everyday (from Richmond vic to Glen waverley and back) .....do you'll think this is enough training if done for 7 weeks everyday ?
I need some suggestions on:
1) What wheels would be ideal ($300 - $400 to spend), What bars should I ride with ideally.
2) Should I upgrade frame as I currently have a heavy steele frame (I was thinking the Cinelli - Vigerello but unsure if the geometry is right for long trips)
3) What route do you suggest (I thinking through gippsland to the coast)
4) Should I use a flip flop hub with two size rings fixed on either side for the steep inclines.
5) What other general tips would you offer for long distance fixed gear riding.
I hope to be travelling very minimal ..but what is essential to carry ?( I know the obvious - tubes, co2, water, butt cream, energy/performance gels )
Btw .....If any else is keen we would love to find 1 or 2 more intermediate riders to some along.
Hope to hear all of your suggestions soon.
ive gotta say that riding that way is anything but flat and really not for fixed IMO.
went from Melbourne to Sydney last year on a geared mountain bike taking the route through Gippsland first, then made our way up and that was tough enough
if your really keen on doing a fixed ride id say go to Adelaide cos its way flatter and doable
but if your up a massive challenge and you're prepared to be pushing your bike up the hills and spinning out down them i say go for it!
First of all I would say not to ride on anything narrower than 28mm tyres, even if you run a 28mm on the rear and a 25mm on the front.
I would recommend going for a two-speed set-up. I imagine that you have horizontal drop-outs, so having a 2-cog difference should be okay. I'd say a 16-tooth on one side and an 18-tooth on the other. This would give you gears of about 70 gear inches and 62 gear inches. If you've got the money to burn, you could consider one of Surly's two-speed "Dingle" fixed cogs. The theory being that you have two chainrings up front, and that you derail the chain to give you either high gear or low gear.
Don't let anyone tell you that it's impossible to tour with only a few gears. Plenty of Australian pioneering cyclists travelled all over Australia on just one or two gears, often fixed (and often with no other form of braking!) It's possible, but don't push yourself too hard. Remember to take a pattern of long days, short days and rest days to prevent yourself from wearing out. Colin Martin rode from England to Australia on a 2-speed Moulton Safari. He's got a website all about it here. Although, he did have two chainwheels and sprockets which let him go from either "high gears" of 67" and 48" to low gears of 48" or 34" (He was using a 2-speed duomatic hub). Heinz Stuke did most of his world touring on a 3-speed with a coaster brake.
If it was me i would strongly recommend going for a freewheel, being able to rest on the downhills will make a massive difference. As for the route look for areas that aren't TOO hilly, and otherwise just avoid highways, riding on them is no fun at all.
When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments- Elizabeth West.
I know a girl in Bega who's a bit of a goer.
Trawl through the archives of Fyxomatosis, or send Andy at Fyxomatosis an e-mail. He has done Sydney to Melbourne a couple of times on single speed, with some of the crew riding fixed. But they resolved that single speed was better for being to coast down long hills. They followed the coast. I know it's the opposite direction to you, but it's a starting point.
Doing 50km a day will get your body used to doing 50km a day. You can do that in a morning, or an afternoon, or both. Once a week, I'd be throwing down and going for a century to let the body know you mean business.
You are very tedious, and grumpy. Stay at home and give advice from your armchair.
- Stonedpirate, June 2010
Ok right... I have a standard setup Masi Speciale (with flat bar) 2008 thrashed for 2 years.
I'll spend a grand before the ride ...what would be your priority ?
I am thinking now...
1) Surly dingle 18 + 22 ($100)
2) 42 + 52 campag front rings. ($100)
3) New rear Rim + Hub. ($250)
4) Comfy seat ($180)
5) A front brake ($50)
6) Spd's ($150)
7) 32 Rear tyre ($80)
Trip computer ($100)
Chill ouuuuuttttt Aaron! Why so many negative or condescending posts? Evilgenius is a kid and enthusiastic about a new interest. Let him be. Not so long ago you were probably in the same position.
Projectus Distractus Maxima.
Nah, Its fine. He was just expressing a good point.
I use velocity deep V's on my fixie and have been quite happy with them.
A group of fixie riders rode Sydney to Melbourne a year or two ago, they went down the coast. There's a video of their trip somewhere.
Changing from fixed to singlespeed, suppose this depends on what kind of challenge you want. If your using a filp-flop, you could always take both
A helmet saved my life
Man i think it would be much too hard to do it fixed.....! freewheel for sure i say. As for 50 kilometres a day training, like someone said above, you need to begin to really push yourself beyond that, at least by doing hard sprints or varying the places you ride. It makes a difference!
i was doing 20/30 k's a day at one point but i nearly died on the ride from sydney to wollongong!
I used to ride a fair bit in that area and I must warn you that there are some very very steep inclines. Free wheeling in an areo position, I managed my top speeds along some of those roads, as fast at 97km/h. If you go fixed, I don't even want to imagine what can happen. I would also warn you that gippsland is famous for its winds. It starts picking up along Kilcunda and Wonthaggi and gets quite nasty up at Fosters. I was blown of the road once and I had to struggle to stand up again with the bike. Had to huddle for 10 to 15 mins to wait for the wind to pass so I could make a dash to the nearest shelter. There will be lots of water points along the way. Depending on the weather, 2 bottles should be sufficient and fill up when a bottle is empty.
It is certainly possible on a single speed, but not as a fixie.
Reynolds 953 (warranty replacement, 7 months and waiting)
Kona Jake the Snake
One of those riders was Patrick Seabase, he is a rather good bike rider from Switzerland.
But alot of people do it. A few Melb guys are doing it this Sunday, but from Syd back home
get a train from sydney to melbourne and ten to richmond. then ride the 15km to glen waverly...
its a good trip, i missed out going touring with a group of my friends who just did gisborne to sydney. thro the kosiosko rangers.
Did you end up following through with the plan?
How'd you go?
I did this with 2 friends last year over easter. 7 days of riding and we rested half way up for one day in meribmula.
Learnt a lot from it, like even if you double chamois, you still go numb when you're riding a rolls for consectutive 120km+ days, etc.
Got a taste for long rides and am doing Syd-Melb in a month, this time with gears, brakes, larger tyres and not carrying any gear!
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