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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I keep how great they are, and there is one for sale here in town(on craigslist). But whats so great about them? I know that you dont have to mess with derailleurs, and I'm sure they are lighter. But what are some other advantages?
 

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Coolpick87 said:
I keep how great they are, and there is one for sale here in town(on craigslist). But whats so great about them? I know that you dont have to mess with derailleurs, and I'm sure they are lighter. But what are some other advantages?
Those are the only "real" advantages.
 

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I just got into mtb about 2 months ago with a used Fisher converted to single speed. It was nice, but I've never been into biking before so getting up hills wore me out like crazy. I switched it to 1x9 but even that wasn't low enough gearing for me on long hills so I'm now on a new (to me) bike with all 27 gears and for now, that's perfect. Yes it's more complicated but I'd rather be able to ride up hills than get off every 2-3 minutes.

For people that have been bikers a long time, I imagine it's a better fit.

BTW, I had 32/16 gearing on it which is pretty common, just didn't work for my non-biker legs. (I'm strong, just not in biking)
 

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It's fun, challenging, makes your trail system feel completely different, whips your ass into shape really fast, and is dead quiet and simple. The dead quiet is probably my favorite part. It's just a fun way to experience your trails in a whole new way, and there's actually some climbs I can do on my SS that I can't on a geared bike. I think never having to choose the right gear makes you good at dealing with what's in front of you.

And fixxies, I think they're just plain fun. Makes going on a beer run exciting and it's always fun to chase down roadies around town and fly past them with your legs circling a thousand times a minute.

It's hard to define advantages, I think it's more of the ride experience.
 

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JPark said:
Those are the only "real" advantages.
There a lot harder to pedal that a geared bike, which will make you literally a stronger rider. You learn to keep speed up hills. I road SS for a few months and then decided it was not for me, mostly because I was not physically able to stand and pedal up hill for extended periods of time. If you ride lots of small rolling hills/flats a SS bike is all your need.

Fixies are used mostly for training by road bikers. They are also widely used by commuters, and dont forget the hipsters. I dont think I have ever seen a fixie mountain bike, way to dangerous if you ask me.
 

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SuperJETT said:
BTW, I had 32/16 gearing on it which is pretty common, just didn't work for my non-biker legs. (I'm strong, just not in biking)
32/16, where you live? 32/18 is the standard up in Park City where I ride, though it still beats me down pretty hard.
 

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SS will make you man up . Stand up and mash on the hills , spin on the flats , teach you to use momentum to its greatest advantage . Not to mention fewer moving parts ,and less noise from the drivetrain . Oh and chicks dig guys with huge quads .
 

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The main mechanical advantage to SS is not having a derailleur, shifters and adjustments to worry about.

I rode single speed exclusively this year, from the flat valley area where I live all the way up and in to the Sierra Nevada mountains. It was a lot of fun. Riding single speed feels different - different when you pedal, different when you're coasting. They are super quiet (most anyway, eccentric bottom brackets tend to creak like crazy but mine has horizontal drop outs so no need) so when you're riding deep in the woods, you don't hear your chain clanking around and stuff, you hear your tires in the dirt, or over the rocks, and you hear all the sounds around you. It's pretty cool.

People argue that you can get the same fitness benefits from riding a geared bike in one gear all day, which I suppose is true. It's not the same though, again because riding the SS feels different, more smooth, and riding your geared bike in one gear all day is dumb because that's not the point of gears :).

If you are interested in trying out SS and you can get in to one cheaply, I'd say go for it. Worst case you hate it and resell it, or keep the bike as something to cruise around your neighborhood with. I love riding around the parks near my house on mine when I have some time to kill. If you like it and stick with it, you'll probably see huge fitness and strength gains from it; I know I did.
 

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s/s is a great way to get you reading the trail better. a lot of geared bike riders will coast into a sharp uphill transition and change just before or (cringe) mid way up the upslope losing a load of momentum and speed as they coast over the top. with a s/s you have no choice but to look ahead, pump the transition and boot the uphill with the result that you're quicker on that section. transfer that to your trail bike and you're quicker overall :thumbsup:
 

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BunnV said:
Details please....
One that comes to mind is a section where the trail goes from the mid elevation of the trail down into a ravine then heads steeply uphill next to a stairway. The start of the downhill is the mid elevation of the uphill so you can't get enough momentum to make it to the top and you can't carry speed into it, so you need to grind out the last bit of the trail. I've never been able to do it on a geared bike I'm either in too high a gear or spin out and completely loose momentum, but on the SS I know exactly when the momentum is slow enough that I can get on the pedals and fight it out to the top. Your experiences may vary, but this is one hill I have never cleaned on a geared bike but can clean 90% of the time on the SS. Of course there's plenty of stuff I can't climb on the SS because I'm too weak.
 

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nachomc said:
People argue that you can get the same fitness benefits from riding a geared bike in one gear all day, which I suppose is true.
Hah-- You'd be getting more of a workout from spinning all those extra gears and carrying all that extra mass ;)

Single speed is easy to sum up-- more of a workout, different way of riding. Might be for you, might not (I haven't ridden a "single speed" since I was 10, so I can't really speak to it). I says if you're interested and can afford it, give it a shot! :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Wow, thanks for all the quick replies. The one I was looking at is $225, and its kinda built as a cyclocross(I guess). I sent the guy an email, I might just pick it up this weekend.
 

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My first couple bikes as a kid were single speeds. The only thing I liked about them was jamming the brakes on with the cranks and doing big rooster skids on tarred driveways. Other than that, they sucked. I suppose now a days the brakes are on the bars...it's been so long.
 

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riding single allows you to focus solely on the trail, cadence, recovery, momentum....and flow.....

it's simply amazing how much ya think about shifting when you ride with gears....and that distraction (IMO) takes away from the ride......

as for fitness....gears and single are 2 totally distinct flavors of ride....apples and oranges....one is not better than the other....

my .02
 

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I had an a-ha! moment on my last Rigid SS ride (7th ride total). I was pedalling through a flat/slightly dH section of small rollers that I had been through many times on my FS geared bike. I will call these "whoops" from now on ... instead of rollers. It gave me a glimpse of what BMX must be like.
 

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I had an a-ha! moment on my last Rigid SS ride (7th ride total). I was pedalling through a flat/slightly dH section of small rollers that I had been through many times on my FS geared bike. I will call these "whoops" from now on ... instead of rollers. It gave me a glimpse of what BMX must be like.
What gearing are you riding now? I started with 32/19 but went to 32/17 recently. I've been liking it quite a bit. Contrary to my expectations, the climbs are actually easier with this gearing!
 

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32/20 ... I spin out on the road to and from the trails, but I can't clean all the climbs on my favorite trails yet. We are snowed/mudded in right now so I can't ride. Hopefully I can get back out in the next week as the snow/mud dries up.
 
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