Mountain Fixie

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Mountain Fixie

Postby Fenlason » Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:58 pm

I finally got to try out my mountain fixie.
I have had people for a while now suggesting I try a single speed mountain bike.. and I was never really interested.. I like gears.. and probably as much for the go fast gears.. as it is for the low climbing gears. I have used a fixie on the road, off and on for years. My wife and I each currently have 2 of them. I had someone this winter that got me intrigued with the idea of riding a fixie mountain bike. At first it sounded absolutely insane... and I did protest, at first. While it is very much a fringe activity, thanks to the internet I learned that there are at least some that do it.. and I got a glimpse of some of the technique needed to successfully survive on one. It sounded like an awesome challenge. I of course have a lot more to learn.. and have harder trails to try, but my first ride can be deemed a success. :D
glenn

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
Kahlil Gibran

We don't stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby Fenlason » Wed Apr 25, 2012 9:13 pm

On the road I don't have much trouble with forgetting I am on a fixie. Trying to coast.. can be quite a painful experience. Come to a set of railroad tracks and stand up to coast over them.. and the bike will try and through you over the handlebars. Well on tonight's ride.. not far into it. I come to a rooty section.. big roots.. sticking up 8" or so.. I "panicked" and tried to stop pedaling. Fortunately it was a little sandy and the rear wheel just locked up.. slowing me down... and I made it over the roots. My other lapses were just split second.. trying to coast.. while the bike keeps pushing your feet.

I had 3 nasty hills I was worried about, although that I think was more just a single speed issue vs specifically a fixie issue. It was work, but I made them all.

I had a downhill that had quite a few big round cobbles.. 4" to 10":12" ers I hit them a little to fast.. It was hard to get up and absorb them all [no suspension] while keep pedalling.. the bike tries to through you over the bars in that situation also. This was part of a little loop that we got to do twice, I went a little slower and had no problems.

At times while waiting for the slower riders to catch up.. I would play off in the woods.. with no trail. This thing is a beast doing that. The Pugs is kind of bulldozerish to start with, in fixie mode, it seems even more so. It just wants to keep plowing. Also with no deraileurs or lower chain.. It was much safer plowing through branches and brush.

I did later get to try a downhill run down a sandy gravel pit. It was not as steep as stuff I have ridden in the past.. but it was quite loose. I slid way behind the seat.. just inches above the tire.. and was able to still keep pedaling fairly smoothly and comfortably. :D
glenn

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
Kahlil Gibran

We don't stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.
George Bernard Shaw
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby Fenlason » Fri May 04, 2012 4:55 am

Last Wednesday was ride #2 on the mountain fixie. I was amazed at how much better I felt on it. I was more confident, did better, and therefore had more fun. :D :twisted:
glenn

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
Kahlil Gibran

We don't stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby JuneBug » Thu May 17, 2012 12:11 pm

I have a friend who has always ridden a rigid single speed mountain bike for town, trail, commuting. He is an engineer and really likes the reliability of a simple design. Then he went 29er rigid single speed. Then he went rigid, single speed, fixed gear. Couldn't be happier. Also wears Keen's bike commuter sandals for all riding: town, trail, commuting. Again, sticking with the basic is better motif that works for him. Occasionally he will use a geared bike and perhaps a suspension fork for serious mountain riding, but he swears by basic set up and loves the way fixed gear makes him even more a part of the bike & yes, he does use brakes.
Enjoy all of these new experiences.
"The large print giveth; the small print taketh away" Tom Waits
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby E. Aaron Scott » Thu Nov 15, 2012 8:07 am

We have a wicked mountain bike trail near my house. I hit it with a 26" Mongoose full suspension, 26 speed, disk breaks and all of the bells and whistles. I'm 38 and ride with a bunch of guys in their early 20's with similar set ups. There is a group of guys in their 60's that come in with single speed fixies and just make everyone else look like a bunch of fools. While we have to pull over to hack up some lung, they just zoom right past. When we are pushing it and trying to lay the hammer down, they just zoom right past. Just watching them makes me sick. Perhaps there is something to riding a fixie.
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby Fenlason » Thu Nov 15, 2012 12:42 pm

E. Aaron Scott wrote:We have a wicked mountain bike trail near my house. I hit it with a 26" Mongoose full suspension, 26 speed, disk breaks and all of the bells and whistles. I'm 38 and ride with a bunch of guys in their early 20's with similar set ups. There is a group of guys in their 60's that come in with single speed fixies and just make everyone else look like a bunch of fools. While we have to pull over to hack up some lung, they just zoom right past. When we are pushing it and trying to lay the hammer down, they just zoom right past. Just watching them makes me sick. Perhaps there is something to riding a fixie.



:lol: :lol: Old Guys Rule :twisted: :thumbsup:
glenn

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
Kahlil Gibran

We don't stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby Shadow Catcher » Thu Nov 15, 2012 3:43 pm

One of the things we ran into in the tandem rally were the retired folks that could basically blow all of us non retired folks off because they had all summer.
I on the other hand have just enough knee problem that I want EVERY gear, to the point I went with half step gearing. Most gear trains are half duplicate ratios, ours do not though it may mean a double shift, front and rear derailleur together.
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby Fenlason » Fri Nov 16, 2012 5:39 pm

Have step gearing was from back when we did not have many cogs in a cassette [or freewheel] [5sp]...vs today's 10 or 11 speed cassettes. That is not the way they do it today, and I am not sure one could set a bike up that way if they wanted to. The new shift systems are fussy about specific differences in tooth count from one chainring to another.
glenn

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
Kahlil Gibran

We don't stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.
George Bernard Shaw
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby H.A. » Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:34 pm

Kj
Last edited by H.A. on Tue Apr 12, 2016 11:34 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Mountain Fixie

Postby Fenlason » Thu Dec 13, 2012 12:59 pm

H.A. wrote:There is a group nearby that rides off road unicycles ! I think it would be hard to top that...

But for what its worth, (maybe some folks are blessed with bicycle exclusive lanes)
I just dont understand a fixiebike on the street. I know some guys do it to showoff as a higher degree of life form or something...
But when that errant driven car will crush you like a bug Its too scary for me. Happens all too often here...

Further on the What its Worth topic,
As a mispent youth I rode alot. Roadbikes, Trackbikes, Cyclocross (modified roadbikes because mountain bikes were yet to be "invented")
The shop I worked had a Penny Farthing and rode that thing too. Mostly around the parking lot, It sure did drum-up alot of business.
On occasion I visited the Velodrome it went along too and rode it on parade laps, never too high on the banks mind you..

Anyway, Come to think of it, a Penny is about as "true and pure" of a fixiebike there is.
Maybe thats something the fixie guys should get into..


Yeah.. riding a unicycle off road is pretty sick. :D :thumbsup: I have known of them.. but I am pretty sure we don't have any right in the area. One thing they don't have to worry about is their pedals hitting logs and such.

In some places riding fixies became hip.. which I guess has it's good and bad points. I started riding fixies on the road 30 or so years ago. I used it as part of my training for road racing. I don't find it any more dangerous on the road, than riding any other bike. [although I do have brakes on it ours, if that was your issue]. Riding a fixie helps improve one's pedal stroke, it helps one to get smoother. It also gives you more of a work out. A decent workout in less time. Which is especially helpful when winter riding. It is also a simpler drivetrain. Making maintenance easier /cheaper.. when riding on sloppy winter roads.

I have ridden Penny Farthings also. One of their disadvantages is hitting obstacles .. they tend to easily pitch you forward onto your head. [which is why "regular" bikes were first called safety bikes. Another advantage of a regular fixie vs a penny farthing. You can more easily set the bike up with a gear appropriate for one's needs. On a Penny Farthing.. you make do, with what your wheel size gives you.
glenn

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
Kahlil Gibran

We don't stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.
George Bernard Shaw
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