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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK - I started on a Kona Blast early last year and really got bit by the MTB bug....so mid-summer last year I got a heck of a deal on a Kona Dawg Dee-lux (fs). Been riding both ever since. I started to browse this forum and see how you all love the simplicity and power that singlespeeding brings to your life. Would it be fair, to get a taste of singlespeed without buying a new bike, to simply ride one of the other Konas in about a 2:1 ratio without shifting on my local trails (or whatever is close to singlespeed gearing)? Or is there more too it than that?? I know the gearie will be heavier, etc., but will this give me a fair idea of what singlespeed is about, or not?? Not trying to start a flame war or trolling...just wanted to know if this would be a decent test without laying out cash for a new ride and then finding it is not for me. Thanks!!!

GaryJ
 

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Of course singlespeed is about gearing, but not really. Yes you can achieve the ratio and try it out but not really "get it" until you ride a dedicated ss with no option of shifting. SS is a state of mind persay. I'm sure I have helped none but it's a fun subject nonetheless. Good luck, it did'nt take long for me to be hooked and now i'm a fulltime sser with no visions of riding gears for a while, I bet the same will happen to you.:cornut: :yesnod:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the replies...and I understand what you are saying....I know it wouldn't truly be singlespeed riding, but like I said, just wondering if it would be close enough to get a taste before laying out cash for something that may not be for me. Oh, believe me, I am not too mechanically inclined, so the simplicity aspect of SS'ing would be better for me and I am not in the best shape, so SS'ing would help in that area as well. Oh well, I guess I just give it a try this weekend and see how the normal trails go....maybe I will become addicted!!!

BTW - I love the chandelier comment and agree totally.....if I were to convert to SS, I wouldn't want that thing hanging out back there either!!! Thanks again. Other comments / opionions welcome....

GaryJ
 

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Sure...Give it a shot

Tho I'd recommend an easier gear for your first time out, maybe a 32:18 or something similar. SS isn't really that hard, especially if you choose a manageable gear. The fact that you consider SS tells me you'd be a good candidate. Have fun.
 

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I started getting a sense of the gearing by leaving the bike in 32x20 and 32x17, which were the 4th and 5th position combinations on my 8 speed bike. After a few rides in those combos, I converted the bike with an ENO wheel and put on a 33x18.

My FS bike is in the basement with a flat, getting dusty.
 

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carpe diem
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Try it that way first

GaryJ said:
Thanks for the replies...and I understand what you are saying....I know it wouldn't truly be singlespeed riding, but like I said, just wondering if it would be close enough to get a taste before laying out cash for something that may not be for me.
GaryJ
It doesn't cost anything and you select the gearing that makes sense for you. I think it will give you a fair representation of what SS is like. I rode my gearie for more than a year like that. First to see if I would like it. As I got better, I went to harder gears.

Then when I decided to take the plunge into SS it took me a while to decide on the format (26" vs 29") and frame. And then more time waiting for the frame once I got it on order.

All during that time, I continued to ride in one gear until I finally got my SS built up. It worked for me.
 

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Welcome to the world. That's more or less the way I started and I agree with Hal...the fact you're even entertaining the notion means your already on the road. There is more to it than a gear ratio though...the change is addicting!
 

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it's a fair test. Granted, the bike will be a little heavier than if converted to solely singlespeed, but you're just getting a taste for now. Just pick a gear you think you'll be able to ride through most of your trails--up and down. 2:1 is a kind of a high gear to start with if you have a lot of hills, as hal brain said, you can start with a 32:18 combo. But remember -- NO changing gears! If you can't make it up the hill, walk it. If not able to go as fast you like, spin like crazy. Only way you will really be able to appreciate singlespeed. You can try a different gear combo out next ride--if you try them out on the same ride, you've just gone back to geared and won't get a true feel for SS.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
First ride - thoughts / impressions

So I went out today and rode my normal trails running 32:18 on the Blast, as I figured the hardtail would give a closer "taste" than the Dawg (squishy). Interesting. I am not a SS convert yet, but neither am I giving up. Let me explain a bit...I live in eastern South Dakota...it is HARD to find a hill here. My normal trail is two loops that are basically flat, each with a small climb and some descending. I knew I would be able to muscle my way up the smaller climb, but had doubts about the bigger climb...in fact, I told myself I would be walking the entire thing (I know, not good, half of this is mental). But the fact is, I need to granny up that one to make it, so I thought no way I could muscle up that guy. I usually make 2 rounds of each of the loops....no problems with the loop with the smaller climb as I mentioned. The loop with the larger climb...the first time around I walked about 3/4 of the climb, but rode up the last 1/4. The next time around, I walked about 1/2 of the climb and then rode the last half. I never did shift out of 32:18 as was mentioned above (man did I think about it!!!). The funny thing was, I felt like I recovered much more quickly riding "SS", than I did spinning up the climbs in granny before. I felt much more tired overall, just because I think this is a harder workout, but yeah, I felt like I recovered after the climbs more quickly than before. In some ways the ride seemed harder than on the gearie, and in some ways it seemed easier. I like the simplicity of "SS"ing, no thinking about which gear to be in, you just pedal away. The other thing I noticed is that I actually got out of the saddle!!! I do on the squishy too, but way more this way with having to crank up the climbs. Man, what power you can generate by standing and mashing (and scraping and pulling on the upstroke)!! One thing this type of riding did show me was how out of shape I am. Granted, I just really started riding last year, and couldn't even GRANNY up the bigger hill when I started, so I see the progress, but this was kind of like going back a step. Anyway, I am not giving up for now....I am going to do the same thing the next couple of rides out and see how it goes. I can see how this could become addicting once one is in better condition. You really need to "ride" the trail, and not just spin along it. I am quickly learning that momentum is your friend (although some sections I was still riding like I could switch gears, and that got a little frustrating...time to stand and hammer!!). But yeah, overall not a bad experience and I look forward to riding this type of "SS" for a while longer, just to see if I don't catch the bug!!!

GaryJ
 

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Nice sentiments mate.. Only had my 1x1 for a few months and for the terrain i ride it is an absolute *****.. But i am getting stronger and fitter. In the course of one ride i both love and hate my bike.. but the hate lessens the fitter i get..

But i guess add to the fact that im riding rigid as well.. One thing i have noticed is how much FS and gears covered up my poor fitness and bad technique.. Really makes you realise you can't ride for sh....

But what would i know, TDF and a few test rides have inspired me to get a roadie next.
 

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you can also take your shifters off

Garyj,

Looks like you made it through without shifting. another option would be to just take your shifters off. Leave the cassette and front and rear deraillers. You will need to adjust the limit srew of the rear derailleur to put you in the proper gear (probably need a longer screw). I kept my front derailleur to help act as a chain guide. That is my cheap way to help me determine if ss is for me. It will also help me decide what gears I will need for the trails I ride should I decide to go dedicated.

Ed
 
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