« Fix-ated »

two fixed gear bikes on a vertical pole rackMy fixed gear bikes including the converted San Fran up topOkay, I got fixie fever or something. But now, after riding one for a few months, I find that my geared bike goes unused almost completely (it is on loan to a work connection, in part to get her the riding bug, but also to make room at home), and my Specialized single speed (freewheel) goes less used. I've been really digging the fixed gear bike since I got comfortable on it. I got the gearing changed a bit to make it a bit more versatile, bringing it down so I can pull hills a tad easier while not losing the power to move at a good speed. I went for a 33 mile ride on it recently and held my own pretty well with some other urban minded cyclists (no spandex, just dudes out for a time killer social ride). That was the single longest ride I ever made, and we cut all across town with our "destination" at a taco shop in PB!

The following weekend I took the Specialized in and asked about getting a fixed gear hub for it. I find that the freewheel and its energy-losing design is more and more of a deal breaker. I don't reach for that bike so readily now. I now understand the people who talked about skipping that stage and just getting onto a fixie if I was to get any single gear bike. So, it is in the shop as I speak. It would be a tad unconventional, what with its 26x1.5" wheels, disk brakes, and odd frame design that is pretty unlike most of the fixie bikes you'll see that are based on track and vintage road designs. The guys at the shop didn't scoff at the idea, but it was unconventional to go fixie with that much brake hardware on it. At least it will be sure to stop! If I leave it at the present gear ratio, it will be interesting to see how much of that desirable flywheel effect I get at the same ratio. I suspect I might actually be able to make it a bit steeper while actually remaining lower than the Torelli (the road bike).

Well, however you slice it, I think I shall be "geared up" to ride with the guys (and girls) on the coming "Murder Ride" on Friday the 13th, so called because it will be a course that seeks out the nasty hills, or maybe Soledad. Fun!

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