More fixie love

Having cleaned my fixie and put it back together I used it again today.

This morning and early afternoon were to three places for work, I didn’t need to carry anything at all so enjoyed riding my the fixie for a change, it was just over 9 miles in total.

This evening we went out for a birthday do for one one our sons, bowling and then a Chinese meal at Meridian Park, Leicester. So I took the fixie along in the back of the car and rode home after the meal (a good way to be able to enjoy a delicious Chinese meal without feeling too guilty afterwards). It was just under 11 miles home.

Fixie’s or Fixed Wheel or Fixed Gear bikes get a very mixed press. The views always seem to be extreme. They are seen as ultra cool or completely crazy.

I don’t think mine fits either description 🙂

Loaded with good front and rear brakes, full mudguards (fenders), rear rack and chainguard I have disguised the cool looks.

With all the things making it highly practical I think it is entirely sensible, ultra reliable transport.

The opinions of the effects on the rider are equally at extremes. Either it will destroy your knees or make you the smoothest rider ever.

I have not found it causing knee problems. However, I take precautions by not trying to accelerate too fast, being willing to stand to accelerate comfortably & having slightly shorter cranks to reduce knee bend. My suspicion is that knee problems are often caused on a fixie by trying to do all the braking with your legs rather than with the brakes. I also tend to avoid very hilly areas as I am not strong enough to ride fixed on big hills (yet?).

I have found that it does make my pedalling smoother. Jane has noticed this when we have been riding the tandem together after I have ridden fixed for a while. I notice lumping pedalling when first riding fixed after a break. Especially the less comfortable your saddle the more you notice lumpy pedalling, especially downhill.

In short I think a fixie makes a good extra bike if you have space for it and don’t live in a really hilly area. It will give you superb reliability, improve your pedalling and get you fitter faster (as you are always pedalling you get more exercise per mile). But why bother getting a great winter bike if it does not come properly kitted out with brakes, mudguards and rack?

Plus they are so beautifully silent & smooth (you do get a very different feeling of connection to the bike when riding fixed).

Related Posts
  1. Hills on fixed gear are possible.. as we proved to ourselves in Bristol over the last couple of years with the (completely fixed gear) Hillycat events and then the Bastard Hills of Bristol ride too (I was the only one riding fixed on that one but we did have a recumbent and a unicycle taking part).

    Bristol Hillycat…
    http://trackdropouts.com/bristol-hillycat-2010

    Bastard Hills ride…
    http://bristolbybike.blogspot.com/
    (yes that is me suffering the last hill of the day, Bridge Valley Rd, in the video)

  2. How sad, I need to ride my fixie more « 42 Bikes - pingback on April 21, 2011 at 10:29 pm

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