NC(ustom)BD - Hipster Fixie Shit

Discussion in 'Lifestyle, Health, Fitness & Food' started by JeffFromMtl, Jul 26, 2014.

  1. JeffFromMtl

    JeffFromMtl Уродливый, но честны

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    After riding a cheap old recycled steel frame fixed gear for 2 years, I figured it was time to upgrade. I've been wanting to build a new bike for some time and figured it was the sort of thing I'd just keep telling myself I'd do, and just never get around to it, until today. This morning, I got it in my head to go and check out what kind of frames I could find at a few local shops, and more or less settled on grabbing a BLB La Piovra, then slowly buying parts and building it step by step.

    Then I went to see the good fellows at Velo iBike, and they were able to procure the exact frame I had in mind in exactly my size second-hand, for half the price of a new one. To boot, it came with the carbon fork and Sram Omnium crankset I would have ended up purchasing new anyway. With the ball already rolling and with a price tag at half as much as I was willing to spend, I decided to just go ahead and put the whole damn thing together today. So this is the final product:

    [​IMG]

    First impressions: The thing is fvcking fast. The 48/16 gear ratio is perfect and it weighs a hell of a lot less than my old bike, while feeling substantially more solid. I've never ridden a bike with such an aggressive riding position, but I love it. No more bending elbows trying to get down low. I only got a chance to do 12 km on it today from the shop to my place, so I hope to have more thoughts about it soon.
     
    IB-studjent-, b7string, Randy and 5 others like this.
  2. Hollowway

    Hollowway Extended Ranger

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    I know nothing about fixed gear bikes. What's the story with those? Are the all the same gear, or are some higher/lower than others? What would it be equivalent to in a multiple gear bike? And why would someone get a fixed year bike (of this sort)?
     
  3. JeffFromMtl

    JeffFromMtl Уродливый, но честны

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    I like fixed gears because they're super stripped down. The simpler a bike is, the less there is that can go wrong and need repairs. I don't really want to have to tune and clean my derailleurs and cassettes too often, so the easiest way to avoid that is to get rid of it. This is especially an issue for commuters and bike messengers who don't really have time to deal with that sort of shit. I won't be using this as a commuter too often (I don't plan on locking it up outside for any long periods of time), but luckily one of my jobs has security and indoor parking. Im holding onto my old cheap bike for that, and for bad/wet weather.

    As far as gear ratios go, you can get a few different combinations. More teeth on the chain ring and less teeth on the cog = higher gear/more resistance. Mine in particular has a 48T chainring and a 16T cog. I'd say that's average to heavy, and you'll be mashing your pedals trying to get up to top speed, rather than spinning them trying to keep up with inertia. I think most serious road bikes would have a slightly higher gear up at the top end like my buddy's bike, which has a 52/13 (I think) ratio on the top gear, which he struggles getting up to speed with because of how much resistance there is.

    The riding experience is also entirely different. I'd describe it as more visceral. You feel a lot more connected to the road when you can't coast. It also doesn't allow for lactic acid to build up between sprints.
     
  4. JeffFromMtl

    JeffFromMtl Уродливый, но честны

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    Also, something I didn't mention is that fixed gears and frames with aggressive geometry like this are inspired by track cycling. Although if I wanted to take this to the track, I'd be required to lose the brake and switch out the bullhorn bars for drops.
     
  5. Daf57

    Daf57 5 7s in 4ths

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    Nice! Very cool you were able to build it yourself! :yesway:
     
  6. ThePhilosopher

    ThePhilosopher Reason User Contributor

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    Very nice bike, I keep telling myself I'll get another Ultegra+ road bike in the future - I just always find other things in the way of dropping that kind of money on a bike.
     
  7. JeffFromMtl

    JeffFromMtl Уродливый, но честны

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    That's how I was about this for quite some time. It was never going to happen unless one morning, I woke up, decided I was going to do it and just go to the shop. Once you're on your way, there isn't really any talking yourself out of it haha.
     
  8. asher

    asher So Did We

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    Man that's a gorgeous looking machine.

    What's the terrain like in Montreal?
     
  9. JeffFromMtl

    JeffFromMtl Уродливый, но честны

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    Thanks, man.

    The terrain isn't really anything special in Montreal, aside from the mountain in the middle of the island, pretty much right in the middle of downtown. I live in the Sud-Ouest, which is where the canal and ports are, and where the manufacturing sector used to be, so pretty much anything I need to go North for, I have to go uphill. There's a bike path that goes around the entire island and just happens to be about 1 km from my place, so I ride that a lot. Whether you're going East or West, it's pretty smooth sailing, and if you take it over the bridge to Parc Jean-Drapeau, you can bike the F1 course any day of the week, which is pretttty cool.
     
  10. asher

    asher So Did We

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    Not super hilly then? If I actually rode bikes that would be my reservation about doing something like this, because I live in a fairly hilly area and my work commute would not be so fun :lol:
     
  11. JeffFromMtl

    JeffFromMtl Уродливый, но честны

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    There are a couple of hills I have to mash at the beginning of my commute, but nothing major. Personally, I don't mind taking on hills, but I think I'm just the kind of person that has to do things the hard way :lol:

    I know there's a pretty big fixed gear community in San Francisco, so I can't be the only one that likes the challenge.
     
  12. ilyti

    ilyti Lazy Ryebread Viking

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    Yes but Montreal has CRAZY DRIVERS. You are either a hero or insane to bike there.
     
  13. JeffFromMtl

    JeffFromMtl Уродливый, но честны

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    Most likely the latter, I'd say :lol:
     
  14. knispler

    knispler SS.org Regular

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    Really nice bike. I am driving fixed for half a year now with a very old french frame and some new parts, I like to call her my street slut. But every time I see such a new, nice fixed gear bike, I want to build myself something new, too.
     
  15. darren

    darren Decibel Guitars Forum MVP

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    Damn… that's one hell of an upgrade! Gorgeous bike.
     
  16. Alfrer

    Alfrer chop chop chop

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    What a beauty! But I would try 48/15 ratio, I'm getting pretty fast to the tempo limit with 48/16.
     
  17. Omura

    Omura SS.org Regular

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    Beautiful bike dude.
    I ride a road bike, because it's what I was into when I got it.
    having built up a single speed from an old road bike, and then having a jam on a fixie.
    I definitely want one. My cycling mentality was always that if I'm not pedalling I'm either going too slow, or being lazy. I don't really like changing gears, I never do it. So I'm already in a good state of mind for it.
    I'm not sure how safe I'll be brakeless tough. I've never crashed and having ridden a fixie I feel like there is a lot of control from my legs. But then having wearing legs will be like having slow brakes..
     
  18. JeffFromMtl

    JeffFromMtl Уродливый, но честны

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    ^ I ride with a front brake. But I'm down for whatever allows me to ride harder.
     
  19. SD83

    SD83 SS.org Regular

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    Just tried going uphill at 38/14 and nearly died :D (and it wasn't even that steep/long). I feel weak now :D The bike looks awesome, but I still can't figure how one can ride one of these in hilly terrain or cities (stop-and-go) without having the legs of Lance Armstrong. Respect.
     
  20. hairychris

    hairychris Hairy Old Bloke

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