Has anyone given up the gears?

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Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby Chillibones » Fri Feb 15, 2013 6:46 pm

As the title says, has anyone given up the gears altogether?

I got a Wilier fixie at Christmas and have been using it a lot more than my geared bike. My regular rides take in hills and flats and on Monday I rode 52km with plenty left in the tank. This got me thinking about whether I need the geared bike at all or is just going to end up neglected.

Has anyone moved away from geared bikes?

How have you found it, did you go back?
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by BNA » Fri Feb 15, 2013 9:35 pm

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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby bychosis » Fri Feb 15, 2013 9:35 pm

Not me, while there's a place in my garage to keep a fixie, and I was going to try to stick to Fixie Friday I won't be giving up the gears for mtb enduros or longer road rides. Fixie Friday will probably be replaced by Fixie Fursday since Friday is now school drop off day. I like the simplicity but it has its place.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby Mulger bill » Fri Feb 15, 2013 10:26 pm

I commute on gears but the Fix has become the go to scoot for quick and dirty fun blasts, there's three very jealous and lonely bikes in the shed :oops:
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby Chillibones » Sat Feb 16, 2013 8:14 am

I know what you mean about the lonely bikes.

There's something about the fixie that makes it so much more fun to ride. I commute most days on it now, and it does become quite 'addictive'.

I have a geared mountain bike which I'll keep as an 'all rounder' but I may sell the road bike and buy another fixie. Decisions, decisions. :roll:
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby BRLVR.v2 » Sat Feb 16, 2013 8:40 am

Chillibones wrote: but I may sell the road bike and buy another fixie. Decisions, decisions. :roll:


You obviously don't ride in(real) hills much.

I was rolling fixed only (1bike) for awhile but missed being able to climb up To lofty or Norton Summit. A new Caad10 sorted that. I've been commuting fixed for the last 5 months but the novelty is starting to wear off and I'm gonna put lights on the roadie and ride that for bit.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby singlespeedscott » Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:33 am

I ride my fixed gear for commuting to work, 50 km round trip. Solo training or slow group rides. Either flat or rolling hills. Any distance up to 100km +.

However if the rides a fast group ride or anything involving some serious climbs I crack out the gears.

I love the fix, but gears have their place.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby Chillibones » Sat Feb 16, 2013 7:59 pm

I'm a Lancastrian (Google Lancashire) if you're not sure. I've ridden many real hills, although I was a bit younger then and had a 10 speed Raleigh, went round most of the UK on that. There were a few real hills.

I agree gears have a place, I guess it depends on what sort of cycling we do. Speed is not the most important thing to me these days, and whilst there are some areas that have pretend hills there is nothing I can't get up slowly. I'm enjoying the challenge that the fixie has brought me, the daily commute is a 32k round trip and since I started it at the beginning of the year I've noticed a rapid improvement in my cycling fitness.

I don't want this to become a 'who's done the hardest, fastest, hilliest etc etc thread, just interested in peoples experiences.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby rkelsen » Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:18 pm

I had an IGH on my commuting bike, but the rim on the rear wheel started developing cracks around the spoke holes after about 15,000km. The bits I had lying around the garage allowed me to convert the bike to a single speed. It was meant to be a temporary measure... that was 1,900km ago... :lol: I don't think I'll go back to commuting with gears for a while. It's 48/17. I couldn't go much taller than that, because there are some decent hills close to home.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby ColinOldnCranky » Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:44 pm

I feel the need to go the whole way and strip off EVERYTHING except what is absolutely necessary. :mrgreen:
  • no freewheel
  • no brake pads, no cable, no calipers, no grips
  • no derailleurs, no chain ring, no cluster, no levers, no chain. And again, no cable.
  • no handle bars, no headset
  • no training wheel!!! :lol:
  • no legal requirement for helmet (Almost forgot that one)
  • no legal requirement for lights, reflectors, bell

And to cost only a couple of hundred bucks for something as light as, ummm, 5kg!

No penalties for riding home after a heavy evening at the bar.

None of those annoying freeloading uninvited drafters. (Of course, you also don't get much company either. :cry: )
Last edited by ColinOldnCranky on Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby HLC » Sun Feb 17, 2013 1:42 am

singlespeedscott wrote:I ride my fixed gear for commuting to work, 50 km round trip. Solo training or slow group rides. Either flat or rolling hills. Any distance up to 100km +.

However if the rides a fast group ride or anything involving some serious climbs I crack out the gears.

I love the fix, but gears have their place.


this.

except i don't commute.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby Bobbybobson » Mon Feb 18, 2013 8:19 pm

Again this word for word
singlespeedscott wrote:I ride my fixed gear for commuting to work, 50 km round trip. Solo training or slow group rides. Either flat or rolling hills. Any distance up to 100km +.

However if the rides a fast group ride or anything involving some serious climbs I crack out the gears.

I love the fix, but gears have their place.


I rode nothing but fixed for about 3 years, mostly due to being unable to afford another bike. Only in the last month did I put together an old roady with a 1x8 set-up so I can tackle the long and steep hills I want to ride.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby Chillibones » Mon Feb 18, 2013 10:23 pm

Bobbybobson,

Three years is some going on a fixie in this day and age.

Your 1x8 is interesting to me. I'm working on a project bike at the moment, it was a 10 speed Europa, it's all stripped down and ready to go to the powdercoaters, I was going to keep it as a single speed but it's tempting to make it a 1X5 for the added flexability.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby BRLVR.v2 » Tue Feb 19, 2013 8:35 am

Chillibones wrote:Bobbybobson,

Three years is some going on a fixie in this day and age.

Your 1x8 is interesting to me. I'm working on a project bike at the moment, it was a 10 speed Europa, it's all stripped down and ready to go to the powdercoaters, I was going to keep it as a single speed but it's tempting to make it a 1X5 for the added flexability.


If its a steel frame then weight saving isn't a factor. So wny not have a second chainring and fd for the extra grams and enjoy a proper range of gears? You already have a solo geared bike. Whzts another coupla hundred grams on a 10 plus kilo 80's roadie any way. Fd prevents chain drop too.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby Bobbybobson » Tue Feb 19, 2013 7:51 pm

Yeh, the fixie is great. So easy to maintain and so little to go wrong on my commutes. it's surprisingly fast too.
What derailleur are you considering using? Is it old or new? If it's old and not in great condition, I'd recommend going a modern-ish 8 speed if possible. I've got a new SRAM 8 speed cassette and 1980-90s Shimano 600 groupset. Works great.

I'd definitely consider getting something to stop chain drop if you're running a single chainring. Mine's only dropped 3 times in 350kms but it's worth getting one of the little devices available (something smaller than a front der.)

BLVR: I haven't found 'range' to be a problem. 44x11 is plenty for downhill; I easily hit 65km which is about as fast as I ever need to go. 44x28 is low enough for hills. Any lower and I might as well get off and walk.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby master6 » Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:01 pm

I have just had a great weekend watching the Australian Penny Farthing championships at Evandale Tasmania. They all had fixed wheels :D .
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby landscapecadmonkey » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:03 pm

fixies / singlespeeds do have gears..... 1

I commuted on a fixed gear bike for about 12mths solid few years back, then intermittently .... then not ... but occasionally get it out for fun / a commute / thirsty thursday / bare foot bowls on a sunday / flat track ride to the coast.....

There are too many other bikes for fun and utility in the garage that have gears.

Hats off to the fixed only rider though.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby europa » Sat Mar 02, 2013 11:47 pm

I've still got a geared bike and I still ride it ... when I'm feeling weak (medical issues). I have a 10% hill on my commute, and while the gears make that hill easier, up and down, the steepest part of that climb is the only time I'd like a lower gear. I ride plenty of hills and lots of flats - I haven't given up on gears, but the are the second string choice.

Fixed all the way ... except when I use the geared grid.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby sarrow » Sun Aug 18, 2013 4:23 pm

I only have one bike now and that's my fixed belt drive bike. I commute every day I can, which is a 30k round trip. I'm also riding the Gran Fondo along the Great Ocean Rd with my dad in a few weeks, which will be the furthest distance I've ridden at a stretch. 40k in there's a 9k hill at 5-6% I believe, which will test me. But so far in training, 60km is very comfortable with some real steep hills thrown in.

I don't feel the need for gears at all, and after the smooth silence of a belt drive, a clattering derailleur and gear changes would irk me. If I rode more competitively I'm sure I'd change my mind, but for me, fixed is where it's at.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby lobstermash » Sun Aug 18, 2013 5:59 pm

If I had have bought my SS before buying my roadie, instead of the other way around, I would have saved the cash. My SS gets all wet weather commuting, popping out to the shops/mate's place and riding with the family duties.

Riding SS has made me a better rider, but it's also made half my roadie's gear superfluous....
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby ldrcycles » Sun Aug 18, 2013 7:37 pm

BRLVR.v2 wrote:
Chillibones wrote:Bobbybobson,

Three years is some going on a fixie in this day and age.

Your 1x8 is interesting to me. I'm working on a project bike at the moment, it was a 10 speed Europa, it's all stripped down and ready to go to the powdercoaters, I was going to keep it as a single speed but it's tempting to make it a 1X5 for the added flexability.


If its a steel frame then weight saving isn't a factor. So wny not have a second chainring and fd for the extra grams and enjoy a proper range of gears? You already have a solo geared bike. Whzts another coupla hundred grams on a 10 plus kilo 80's roadie any way. Fd prevents chain drop too.


I did 50km this morning on my steel Mercier which included a couple of reasonably steep hills and never needed to change out of the big ring, the big attraction of 1x on a steel road bike for me is the look 8) .


singlespeedscott wrote:I love the fix, but gears have their place.


And another +1 for this, except I would say like rather than love, going fast is too important to me :D .
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby miml » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:10 pm

I sold my roadie to get a Fixie.

I love it to bits, am actually thinking if it will be too much of a work out in Summer. You know, it is going to be HOT.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby brasstinman » Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:00 pm

I cut the gear cables on my commuter (10km round trip) and turned it into a SS. I haven't looked back. I've commuted on a SS a few years back and missed it after I sold the bike. I'm using 46/16 and it's hard as my commute to work is all up hill but I've already noticed at the end of week two that my legs are getting stronger.
I'll be happy to ride this longer distances and at the moment I don't feel like I need a geared bike.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby rkelsen » Mon Aug 26, 2013 8:57 am

ldrcycles wrote:
BRLVR.v2 wrote:If its a steel frame then weight saving isn't a factor. So wny not have a second chainring and fd for the extra grams and enjoy a proper range of gears? You already have a solo geared bike. Whzts another coupla hundred grams on a 10 plus kilo 80's roadie any way. Fd prevents chain drop too.

I did 50km this morning on my steel Mercier which included a couple of reasonably steep hills and never needed to change out of the big ring, the big attraction of 1x on a steel road bike for me is the look 8)

Me three. It looks much neater and I didn't want to ruin the new paintjob with a clamp-on FD.

I've got a single 42t chainring and 11-28 cassette on my retro roady. Cranking top gear at ~100rpm, I can sit on 50kph. Plenty fast enough for me. I've contemplated switching to a 44 or 46 tooth chainring because they look better on paper, but then I go for a ride and always decide to stick with the 42 because it is so much fun.

There's plenty of range with the 11-28 cassette. Maybe I've been lucky, but chain drop hasn't happened to me yet.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby Clownshoes » Thu Sep 26, 2013 4:42 pm

Literally given up the gears on my old road bike :twisted:

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Still got a 9 speed road bike (steelisreal spec) for 100km+ rides and a flat bar road bike with 2x10 shifters but the simplicity and stealth of that singlespeed means it gets ridden a lot. I also commute regularly on a fixed gear bike because beers instead of gears yolo.
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Re: Has anyone given up the gears?

Postby ldrcycles » Thu Sep 26, 2013 6:33 pm

Clownshoes wrote: because beers instead of gears yolo.


:lol:
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