Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Singlespeeders:

I've been browsing this forum for a long time now and this is my first post. I'll keep it short: I'm looking to build up a Surly 1x1 frame I just got, and I want to have what was called a "coaster brake" back in the day when I rode BMX bikes.

I'm wondering if a "fixed/free" hub is what I'm looking for. I'm not looking for a fixed gear... I want the rear wheel to spin even when I'm not pedaling, but I also want to be able to brake with the pedals. Does that make sense?

If anyone could recommend the best hub for this application, I'd appreicate it.

Lastly, I've read on some fixed gear forums that you should have a wheel with many spokes to compensate for the pressure that this type of braking applies. Is this true? And does anyone have any good singlespeed wheel recommendations?

Thanks.

Gregory
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,565 Posts
You need a coaster brake specific hub. Neither a singlespeed nor a fixed/free hub will work.

Coaster brakes are generally not adequate for mountain biking, and as such no coaster brakes hubs are made with mountain biking in mind (or any serious riding in mind, for that matter). You will have to find a hub designed for a cheap cruiser or childs bike to build your wheel with. You should also check with Surly to ensure that the chainstay on the 1x1 frame can handle the loads that would be transferred to it -- I'm guessing it probably would, but its worth asking.

I don't know that you need an large number of spokes -- fixed gears don't need more than 32 in most cases.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the quick reply. I know it's a 1x1 but I'm actually building this thing to roll around the streets of Miami Beach. Not a hill in sight.

Didn't know coaster brake hubs were that uncommon. I suppose I'll just got with a regular freewheel and some v-brakes. Or maybe even get a fixed/free and go fixed until I realize my bike is owning me, and flip the wheel.

Thanks again.
 

·
makin skid marks
Joined
·
170 Posts
Coaster brakes are not uncommon, just not seen as a 'serious' option for MTB use. You might check garage sales for an old bike, even just a rear wheel, to rob the rear hub. Then get it laced up w/a new rim. One potential problem is the fact that most coaster brake hubs will be 36 hole(standard for cheap/older bikes)& most decent MTB rims will be 32. Shimano made a good coaster, before that Bendix was a well-known CB.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
174 Posts
shimano do heaps of them

Shimano do a range of single and multi speed coaster hubs in their "comfort" ranges. These would be some of the highest quality versions available but they're not that commonly seen. As to how well they would go on a mtb off road I have no idea. I'd hate to see the clutch cones etc after some grit got into the hub!

Coaster hubs were never renowned for great braking performance though, but I suppose you may not be looking for that sort of power. I'd try building up a wheel with an old hub from a kiddies bike to see if you liked the feel. You may have to watch the hub spacing, because I'm not sure if the kiddies bike ones are a standard size compatible with mtb frames.
 

·
Is dang happy!
Joined
·
1,380 Posts
One that activated a disc would keep heat from the bearings=smoke! DH beware.
 

·
I live to bike
Joined
·
2,397 Posts
you could pick up a coaster brake wheel at any LBS. If they don't have one in stock, they could easily order you one. Probably run you less than $50.

FWIW, no decent BMX bike or MTB comes with a coaster brake. Coaster brakes are usually reserved for small kid's bikes because young children do not have the strength or coordination to use hand brakes. Coaster brakes are also often found on beach cruisers and some comfort bikes because some older people like them because they haven't ridden a bike in decades and it's all they remember how to use.

If you're just cruising the streets, and not doing any mountain biking and want a coaster brake, I'd suggest selling the 1x1 and getting a decent beach cruiser--it will fit the bill better for your intended riding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
Old but interesting thread!!

A coaster brake hub on a MTB?Yes!
Because,in my opinion,the beach cruisers are heavy and I don't like their curved frames!
I like the fixie look but don't want to try it.
Nothing to check before 12 months apart chain tension and tires pressure...:thumbsup:


I have an old 92' GT Timberline and I try to find a coaster brake hub which can fit a 135mm rear spacing.
The KT and Shimano hubs seems to be available with a longer axle,170 to 185mm.

If I'm not wrong,the Shimano has just a threaded axle which can easily be replaced by any longer one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
262 Posts
I've been toying with the idea of a townie bike with a coaster brake for a while. Moustache bars, a rack, little bell, coaster brake. Maybe Northroad bars, but ... anyway ...

... and as for seat stay load, I can safely say that its somewhere between the tensile strength of three 4" zipties and four wraps of 1/4" coppper wire ;)

-Rob.
 

·
Stokeless Asshat
Joined
·
3,360 Posts
Coaster

Check ebay also. I have hubs in 28,32 ,36 and 40 hole. Morrow, New Departure, Sachs, Sun Tour, Shimano,Torpedo. Thats just a short list.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
One of my buddies laced up an old beach cruiser CB hub onto his single speed, which was a kona dj bike that he dremmeled the dropouts so it could be converted to ss. He rode the crap outta that bike until he inilated the hub on a singletrack decent ended up craking his dremmeled drop out too. it was such a cool frankenbike. with and EBB and a strong brake arm brace its totally feasible. his setup was quite mickey moused which led to its demise
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
219 Posts
Yup - Bontrager Race OR with a shimano coaster hub on a half decent rigida rim, 32 holes, ultrarigid original Pace steel forks and some fat Oury grips and 2.4 tyres. It's fun. It's also scary at times, but it is fun. I said that twice to emphasise how fun it can be. And scary... I'll stop now. Chainline can be a bit of a pain, even with the shortests BB spindle I had to have the chainring on the middle ring position which didn't look as good as the outer, and still use some spacers to push it further towards the centre of the bike. Brake arm was semi bodged using inner tube lock rings on the bolt to space it out but it seems very solid; bit of inner tube wrapped around the chainstay should keep it from biting in.

Ian
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top