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Fixte gurus, advice please!(16 posts)

Fixte gurus, advice please!look271
Dec 11, 2001 4:13 PM
I am going to build up a fixte from an older frame. Question is; do I need a dedicated single crank or can I get away with using a double with just one chainring? If I need the single crank, where can I get one? (Cheap is good!)
re: Fixte gurus, advice please!walter
Dec 11, 2001 4:58 PM
I have an 80s Campy crank and use just one chainwheel. I mounted it on the inside of the spider to help center my chainline and it works fine.

A true single crank would be no muss, no fuss. True track cranks tend to be a bit pricey but old BMX cranks often show up on eBay fairly cheaply. Might even get some funky anodized one. :-)

The best (cheapest) thing is to mount just one chainwheel on the crankarm like I said above though. I got lucky and it tightened up fine w/o spacers but if you need some go to the Harris Cyclery site ( they're cheap enough that it'll probably cost more to ship them than to buy them. The spacers also help with chainline and that is important on a fixte.

BTW the okder the frame the better, narrower dropout spacing.
re: Fixte gurus, advice please!look271
Dec 11, 2001 6:13 PM
I saw Harris' site. Might just use the crank that I get on the bike. I've been watching a Scwhinn LeTour III on e-bay. Looks like it will fit the bill. Already have the wheel. Might check one of the LBS's in my area. One guy has all kinds of bikes hanging in his shop!
Just don't call it a single speed. Sorry, a little off subjectDave Hickey
Dec 11, 2001 5:32 PM
I was riding on Sunday when I came upon another cyclist. Keep in mind this is Texas and other cyclist are few and far between. As I approached, I noticed he was riding a beautiful single speed/fixed gear. As I passed, I said "great looking single speed". He just grumbled back " It's a fixed gear". Well excuuuuuuse me. Cyclist's can be such a@@holes sometimes.
Dec 11, 2001 6:45 PM
That's like calling a C40 an OCLV, or a Litespeed an Airborne, or a BMW a Porsche, or a 'vette a mustang, etc. People can be sooo stupid!
Actually, the one I want will be BOTH ...Humma Hah
Dec 11, 2001 8:37 PM
... I really like the concept of the flip-flop hub. I know, I know, Sheldon says "coasting is BAD for you", but I really do adore coasting. I intend to ride fixie sometimes, especially flatter rides, because it IS a way to work on things nothing else will do, but for hillier rides, such as maybe a brevet run, I'd like the option of flipping the hub around to use the freewheel.

I'm no purist, and obviously I don't CARE what the purists think.
all you need...secourir
Dec 12, 2001 12:04 AM
crankarms $15

small chainring $9.88

or big chainring $18.95

single chainring bolts $9,95

track chain $4.95

the rest depends on which hub you want to use.

excel has a rear suzue flip/flop track hub($26.95) which may make sense with a 175 mm crank. it doesnt take much to space for a 130mm frame/ 126mm is no probs.

they have single bmx tooths that fit on a cassette hub if you are capable of spacing it right.

they also have single freewheels and a single thread-on track cog and lockring can be found for not too much coin (harris cycles has a lot of options) if you plan on using a freewheel or for a flip flop side.

to save you time if you build up a suzue flip/flop to an ma3 rim ($30) all you need is 36 289mm spokes. if you have some nice horizontal dropouts its not much trouble getting a good chain tension.

at chucks bikes they also have a suntour threaded hubset (130mm+$25.00) and some 700c ukai rims ($2 only) both in 32 hole sizes. with a single cog a lockring and 64 spokes i doubt if you could make a cheaper usable new wheelset. they also have michelin axial pro's from $18.95. and i was wary to order from them but had the cranks and tires delivered to my door c.o.d. am very happy.

the sugino bottom bracket definately fits the older style shimano tapered bottom bracket. and if you think about it well enough you should be able to get a good chainline without a stack of spacers between the bottom bracket and the right crank-arm.

i would strongly advise using a flip/flop with 175mm cranks if you are planning to motor along or ride in city traffic though. but its your call.

i think thats all you will need for a basic setup. for less than $150 you could be rolling along just fine. dont spend any more as if you really take to it then you can splurge properly if not then you have a great wheel for the magturbo or shopping bike or whatever. fixed /single speed riding is meant to be simple and a cheap way to save on parts. it amounts to far far more in effect.
whyJack S
Dec 12, 2001 6:00 AM
a 1/8" track chain with 3/32" cogs and chainring? plus, you forgot to add shipping at $5-7 a pop for each of the places you buy from... at that rate an LBS might be competitive as they can order all from QBP (with the exception of cranks that he already has, or LBS might have some take offs that they want to unload for cheap).

you don't need track cranks, just get single chainring bolts and mount on inside to get the chainline right. as far as length goes, if trying work on spin you might consider shorter and if a commuter or coffee bike use the same size as freewheel bike- you want clearance for cornering 'cause you can't coast through
ditto on the LBSStraightblock
Dec 12, 2001 8:51 AM
Some of the small parts aren't worth mail ordering & are cheaper at the LBS. You might pay top dollar at the local roadie boutique, but I went to a family BMX shop & picked up a set of single chainring bolts for $6 when I converted my MTB to SS last year. Didn't have to pay shipping or wait for the UPS truck all week, either.
Ours are both fixed & free.MB1
Dec 12, 2001 2:11 PM
We usually take the fixtes out on Sundays after a really long ride on Saturday (130ish). Commute on them a bunch too.

Lately we have been mostly riding SS as we are doing more and bigger hills than we had been when we were riding fixed only. It is great to have the option.

BTW coasting downhill is a whole lot of fun.
A double crank works fine.MB1
Dec 12, 2001 7:30 AM
You might need single chainring bolts if you are going to just run one chainring. No real reason you couldn't leave both chainrings on till you get everything dialed in.
Thanks everyone!look271
Dec 12, 2001 9:01 AM
I'm going to check out one of my LBS shops; he has lots of "stuff" in storage. Got the rear wheel and hub from e-bay. Just need to find a suitable frame. Shouldn't be hard to do.
I was able to get perfect chainline on outer ring.ohio
Dec 12, 2001 12:17 PM
By using a older dura-ace 70 x 103mm BB, and a pair of cranks designed for 109 - 111mm (pretty standard double) I was able to get the outer chainring to be inline with the cog. I don't really care about the aesthetics, but the super low Q-factor was really nice since my hip joints can get sore, especially when cranking one gear ratio.
well of course if you use a shorter bb!DUH!!!
Dec 12, 2001 2:17 PM
just pointing out that 103 is available...ohio
Dec 12, 2001 8:46 PM
and cheaper than a pair of track cranks. If it was so obvious he wouldn't be asking the question would he?
but it is obvious...Diggler
Dec 13, 2001 6:57 AM
if you think about it, is there any logical reason you CAN'T use a double, even if you don't remove a ring?