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Over 50 Fixed Gear Riders

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Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

Over 50 Fixed Gear Riders

Old 07-21-19, 09:47 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by 1AvidCyclistCat View Post
Oh man, that’s so wonderful, to speak and getting advice from a track FG pre ( edit)WWII: epic ��
Whoops, Typo: WWII. I should wear my glasses and proof read before hitting "send".......Sorry

PS: It was not all "wonderful" to be coached by someone from the old true "Hardman School" of cycle racing, but if you did what he required you ended up with a solid basic education in operational control/bike handling, tactics, technique and some speed. It wasn't supposed to be easy, but it worked for me.

-Bandera
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Last edited by Bandera; 07-21-19 at 11:04 AM.
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Old 07-21-19, 09:48 AM
  #27  
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I've really enjoyed my fixed gear for the past several years, almost all of it on commuting rides. But I have to say, I've flipped it to the freewheel side and may never go back. Having apparently evolved from "Unbreakable" to "Glass" the potential of a pedal strike is just too much to deal with.
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Old 07-21-19, 02:26 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
I've really enjoyed my fixed gear for the past several years, almost all of it on commuting rides. But I have to say, I've flipped it to the freewheel side and may never go back. Having apparently evolved from "Unbreakable" to "Glass" the potential of a pedal strike is just too much to deal with.
I've been FG commuting forever - really fun to have that extra set of skills.

I used to have pedal strikes with my FG that was based on a touring frame - the Masi. But my Trek FG is more of a fast hybrid style and I don't think I've ever scraped.
The Masi rode really well no-hands and the Trek won't let me take my hands off for a second... probably all related to BB height.




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Old 07-21-19, 09:40 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by FiftySix View Post
54 years old here. I recently picked up this pre-owned Schwinn. It's a cruiser type single speed in great condition and will be modded soon to suit me better.

Gorgeous find!
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Old 07-21-19, 10:00 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
I've been FG commuting forever - really fun to have that extra set of skills.

I used to have pedal strikes with my FG that was based on a touring frame - the Masi. But my Trek FG is more of a fast hybrid style and I don't think I've ever scraped.
The Masi rode really well no-hands and the Trek won't let me take my hands off for a second... probably all related to BB height.
BB height doesn't have that strong an effect. My Mooney has a high enough BB that pedal strike fixed isn't much of an issue and it rides no-hands beautifully. My ti fix gear has a step higher BB and while much quicker, is a blast to ride no-hands.

I'd look at the trail. I read somewhere that for roughly similar steering, bikes of different head tube angles should have different trails. I plotted the numbers that author gave on a trail vs HT angle graph, drew the line. then put dots representing my bikes. The bikes I liked followed a line parallel to the author's. (I like quicker steering than most.) So I now go to that plot if I am buying a new fork or ordering a custom. (I think/hope I've ordered enough customs now.)

Pedal strike - I picked up a very cheap Peugeot sports frame of 501 tubing to build into a fun, light, fast summer fix gear. Bridgestone fork. Very quick steering. A blast to ride, the most fun since my racing bike 30 years before. But - pedal strike! With 23c tires instead of probably 27" and the famous Peugeot low BB I struck the pedal doing left turns at stoplights. Hit some speed bumps really hard. It really wasn't dangerous - the pedal struck long before I came to any large lean, but those pedals got a real beating!

Ben

Last edited by 79pmooney; 07-21-19 at 10:09 PM.
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Old 07-22-19, 07:35 AM
  #31  
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I'm sure there are more than 50 people riding fixies.
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Old 07-22-19, 10:52 AM
  #32  
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Rigorous Discipline

Originally Posted by Bandera View Post
Whoops, Typo: WWII. I should wear my glasses and proof read before hitting "send".......Sorry

PS: It was not all "wonderful" to be coached by someone from the old true "Hardman School" of cycle racing, but if you did what he required you ended up with a solid basic education in operational control/bike handling, tactics, technique and some speed. It wasn't supposed to be easy, but it worked for me.

-Bandera
Got it. You are a very fortunate cyclist.
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Old 07-22-19, 11:00 AM
  #33  
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Orange Ivy Cycles Fixie

Originally Posted by Bandera View Post
Welcome to the forum.
This is my 51st season riding fixed gear on the road, a traditional activity for club cyclists for the last century or so.
The SS/FG, C&V and Long Distance BF sub-forums have active FG riders of the >50 age cadre as well.

-Bandera
This is my Ivy Cycles retro frame fixie.


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Old 07-22-19, 11:02 AM
  #34  
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Wow cool

Originally Posted by JohnDThompson View Post
I'm 64 and still ride fixed gear on the road frequently. Here I am a couple years ago finished a century ride on my fixed gear bike:

You are one avid FG VELONAUT extraordinaire 💪🏻🏆
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Old 07-22-19, 11:45 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
I've really enjoyed my fixed gear for the past several years, almost all of it on commuting rides. But I have to say, I've flipped it to the freewheel side and may never go back. Having apparently evolved from "Unbreakable" to "Glass" the potential of a pedal strike is just too much to deal with.
I get you for it takes a lot longer to recover from any injuries and we have higher risk for fractures. I had a blow out on my front tire and was going 16-17 mph and it was a scary painful experience.
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Old 07-22-19, 11:48 AM
  #36  
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True that

Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
I've been FG commuting forever - really fun to have that extra set of skills.

I used to have pedal strikes with my FG that was based on a touring frame - the Masi. But my Trek FG is more of a fast hybrid style and I don't think I've ever scraped.
The Masi rode really well no-hands and the Trek won't let me take my hands off for a second... probably all related to BB height.




My Gios Torino fixie is the same. However, the Ivy Cycles Fixie letís me pedal cruise hands free forever.
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Old 07-22-19, 11:53 AM
  #37  
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Pictures

Originally Posted by 1AvidCyclistCat View Post
My Gios Torino fixie is the same. However, the Ivy Cycles Fixie letís me pedal cruise hands free forever.



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Old 07-22-19, 01:04 PM
  #38  
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Began riding fixed at 59 or so. Now 64 and moved to Kentucky. Sadly, my fixed is now a Sturmey Archer 3 speed. I just could not do the repeated hills in much of my area.
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Old 07-22-19, 01:07 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Bandera View Post
...
When Eddie B was appointed US Nat'l coach in '77 supported by Dr. Ed Burke the insular post war US racing scene was shaken awake, but one thing didn't change.

"A fixed gear helps develop a nice 360 degree pedal stroke.....this means you can get the same benefit for less time in miserable conditions."

-Bicycle Road Racing by Edward Borysewicz
I hadn't seen that quote before, but, yup! I got started late for yesterday's ride. Did 46 miles instead of closer to 60. But as a disciplined fix gear ride, it was quite real!

One change I did about 8 years ago that I love is flip-flip wheels. (My term. Flip-flop wheels are fixed-singlespeed. Flip-flip are fixed on both sides.)

I run a normal cog on one side and a big one on the other when I go climbing. (And strap a custom, lightweight chainwhip to the TT and bring a tiny cog to go down.) Or, for flat rides, I put on two cogs a tooth apart. Yesterday 16 and 17. 17 the first 6 miles to my espresso/ride start stop then 16 until a mile from home. (44 in front)

I'd love to see the ancient tradition of flip-flip hubs brought back. I knew an Englishman who raced the grass tracks of that country many years ago. Would ride a big cog to the races, flip the wheel, race, flip and ride home. A common practice.
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Old 07-22-19, 01:45 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
I'd love to see the ancient tradition of flip-flip hubs brought back.
Here you go:
"The rear hub is a flip-flop design, fixed threading on both sides allows the use of fixed or freewheel on either or both sides of the hub."

https://wabicycles.com/collections/c...speed-wheelset

My FG century riding buddy has a set for his 48/18-17, works a treat and holds up (so far) for an ex-track sprinter who puts out some impressive watts on demand.

-Bandera
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Old 07-22-19, 02:08 PM
  #41  
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The hubs are available. I have 4 Miches, all in circulation. (he Miches are a little odd. They use a slightly larger diameter lockring threading, Italian/Campy I believe that the vast majority of the rest of the world. This means that a 13 tooth is un-ridable like the 12 when using the lockring Miche supplies. Good thing is that any standard 12 tooth bvell shaped lockring can be re-threaded to the Miche standard. The tough part is that some of the older (SunTour and the like) 12 tooth lockrings were made from very high-quality, very hard steel. So with entirely fair labor and tool sharpening/damage charges, the re-treading makes for the world's most expensive lock-rings.

Funny, I bought one boxed set of very high end Miche hubs. Regular threading! So I have to make sure each lockrinr travels with its respective hub.

My previous post wasn't about being able to get fix-fix hubs, it was about getting folks like us to use them. I know of virtually nobody who ever has save that old Englishman. Riding the old way. The ritual of stopping and flipping the wheel on the side of the road. And staying fixed the whole time. (Your buddy gets it. That's almost exactly what I rode yesterday.)
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Old 07-22-19, 02:14 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by AlmostTrick View Post
I started riding fixed about 4 years ago. Now at 58, I enjoy it enough that I have 3 FG bikes.
Do you also ride road or MTB?
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Old 07-22-19, 02:16 PM
  #43  
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Impressive pedigree

Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
Humbling. I'm just a newcomer. Didn't ride my first one until 1976. But I was sold that first ride, have had one ever since and done more than half my lifetime miles fixed. And yeah, I started my first season of racing when the club vets told me i needed to set my second bike up fixed to learn to pedal smoothly. Thank you! my Mooney is a (rather differently geared) very traditional English road fix gear and wonderful! My TiCycles is what we might have raced in the '80s as a top of the line road bike in a fictional world where gears never happened. If I were to put light sewups on, that bike would be pure race.


Fix gear bikes:

~1983 Trek 400 set up with an enormous stem, centerpull brakes, fenders, LowRider rack and a U-lock mount. Winter/rain/city bike. The bike I will always have. All parts, including frame, subject to wear, crashes and replacement. 28c Paselas. The Trek is about to roll 20,000 miles, all fixed. ~75,000 with all five frames it's been through.

2011 TiCycles ti fix gear with custom super long dropout (yes, not track ends), fenders as appropriate and two brake/"cockpit"s. Dual pivots, deep, wide pista bars and V-brake levers for the climbing setup and traditional Nitto road bars with regular levers and Superbe sidepulls for flat rides. 5 minutes to swap. Tires to 25c. Bigger at the expense of the biggest (23 and 24 tooth) cogs. Can run all cogs, 12 to 24 on one length chain. 17,000 miles. Never seen a freewheel.

And in part time fix gear use, my Mooney running a triple in front with super low Q-factor and 1/8" rings. In back a single or double cog on one side, a single on the other so I can run either a true mountain fix gear (95", 70" and 46" with the option of going to a 41" if I carry a chainwhip) or simple fix-fix two speed for the flat, say 72" and 67". Brakes of course and fenders as appropriate. Tires to 35c. Part time fix gear use because this bike is also the one I will take for serious gravel or touring. A newbie. Only 3200 miles fixed.

Ben
Wow, Ben, you are an elite FG VELONAUT cyclist. Inspiring 🏆
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Old 07-22-19, 07:39 PM
  #44  
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I too started riding fixed gear at age 56 and I'll be 60 in a couple of months. It is truly the way to be one with the bike. When I hop on a geared bike it seems dead compared to my fixed gear bike. Hear's what mine looked like quite a while ago. Today (don't have pictures at the moment) it's a lot less townie looking. It's got a high BB so pedal strikes are zero.
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Old 07-23-19, 07:20 AM
  #45  
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I started riding fixed in either late '97 or early '98 thanks to the late Sheldon Brown's writings. I've built up a surprising number of fixed-gear conversions and I briefly owned a 1st generation Bianchi (eco-) Pista (purchased in late '99), but the bulk of my fixed mileage has been on this Mercian Vincitore I ordered in late '02 and received the following January -



If I had it to do again, I would have ordered it with forward-facing dropouts - looooong forward-facing road dropouts like those used on British bikes for decades. Up until last week, I had always run it in fixed/fixed mode, usually running a 70-ish-inch gear for pavement and a 63-ish-inch gear on the other side for dirt roads, but I am currently experimenting with a White Industries Dos Eno 17/19T freewheel for a low/bailout gear, while also toying with the idea of ultra-light cycle camping for S24O rides. We'll see. If I can make my schedule work for more ride time, I will put that 18T cog back on and go hit the fire roads again, though. Amazing how far you can go with 28 mm tires and a 63-in gear, and I am not a particularly strong or speedy or skillful rider, either.

The other fixed-gear that has become a long-term bike was originally supposed to be a beach week vacation/beater bike that somehow morphed into being my favorite for very early rides before breakfast. Some sort of strange alchemy happens when you combine Gitane's geometry for a TdF in 60 cm with metric gauge 531 - every example I've ever ridden has that certain je ne sais quoi, and when you add the connectedness of fixed-gear to the mix, it really is indescribable. I need to take some more pix of this one, particularly since I replaced the Weinmann 500s with some Carreras.

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Old 07-25-19, 11:56 AM
  #46  
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My FG machine, fitted out now w/ "modern" 80's aero brake levers and a low spoke count AL/CF composite Fr wheel for LD rides borrowed from my CF Merckx.

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Old 07-26-19, 02:06 PM
  #47  
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What is that yellow thing in the upper right?


-Tim-

Originally Posted by 1AvidCyclistCat View Post

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Old 07-27-19, 07:23 AM
  #48  
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Surly

Originally Posted by takenreasy View Post
I too started riding fixed gear at age 56 and I'll be 60 in a couple of months. It is truly the way to be one with the bike. When I hop on a geared bike it seems dead compared to my fixed gear bike. Hear's what mine looked like quite a while ago. Today (don't have pictures at the moment) it's a lot less townie looking. It's got a high BB so pedal strikes are zero.
That is one gentlemanís Surlyfixie
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Old 07-27-19, 07:24 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by 1AvidCyclistCat View Post
That is one gentlemanís Surlyfixie
Excellent set up!
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Old 07-27-19, 07:30 AM
  #50  
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Quest Velomobile

Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
What is that yellow thing in the upper right?


-Tim-
Tim, the smaller yellow thing is my Nashbar neon yellow jersey. The bigger yellow object is my Quest QB027 Velomobile from Bluevelo.com.
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