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MrBunsy
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Re: Bikes become popular again

Postby MrBunsy » Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:04 pm

MikeTheWookiee wrote:
MrBunsy wrote:
martinmir wrote:unassuming rides preferred by urban cyclists who don't need any eye-catching embellishments to help get them stolen.

What use is that if you're dead under the wheels of a lorry because you couldn't stop?

Surely you just use your feet on the road? Or flip one backwards to do the back wheel, and one forwards to slow the front (you could always use your teeth for that one...) :roll:

At 25 km/h? Every time you want to stop? Good luck :P
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Re: Bikes become popular again

Postby xander » Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:52 pm

MrBunsy wrote:
MikeTheWookiee wrote:
MrBunsy wrote:
martinmir wrote:unassuming rides preferred by urban cyclists who don't need any eye-catching embellishments to help get them stolen.

What use is that if you're dead under the wheels of a lorry because you couldn't stop?

Surely you just use your feet on the road? Or flip one backwards to do the back wheel, and one forwards to slow the front (you could always use your teeth for that one...) :roll:

At 25 km/h? Every time you want to stop? Good luck :P

The front gear and the back gear are directly connected to each other via the chain -- there is no flywheel. Thus, as soon as you stop pedaling, you start braking. If you force the pedals back hard enough, the back wheel will stop turning entirely, and you will skid to a stop. If you pedal more slowly, you will stop more smoothly.

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Postby MrBunsy » Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:16 pm

No ratchet you mean? That would partly solve that problem I suppose, but it still wouldn't be as easy to stop as with brakes. It does make it a rather pointless bike for anywhere with hills, though.
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Postby xander » Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:49 pm

MrBunsy wrote:No ratchet you mean? That would partly solve that problem I suppose, but it still wouldn't be as easy to stop as with brakes. It does make it a rather pointless bike for anywhere with hills, though.

No, I don't mean a ratchet. I mean a freewheel (don't know why I called it a flywheel).

The folk I know who ride fixed gear bicycles generally claim to do it for health reasons. Because there is only one gear ratio, hills require them to work harder, and they cannot stop pedaling, which requires that they work harder. A lot of them are serious competitive bikers who train with fixed gear bikes (because it is harder), and race with more modern bikes. And they are just as easy to stop as bikes with brakes.

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Postby bert_the_turtle » Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:55 pm

You'd still get run over by a lorry without any light whatsoever.
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Postby MrBunsy » Wed Sep 17, 2008 4:04 pm

xander wrote:No, I don't mean a ratchet. I mean a freewheel (don't know why I called it a flywheel).

The folk I know who ride fixed gear bicycles generally claim to do it for health reasons. Because there is only one gear ratio, hills require them to work harder, and they cannot stop pedaling, which requires that they work harder. A lot of them are serious competitive bikers who train with fixed gear bikes (because it is harder), and race with more modern bikes. And they are just as easy to stop as bikes with brakes.

xander
Freewheel, right. I've always known it as a ratchet.

Maybe if you're able to cycle up a hill without gears, but I can't imagine myself trying to stop a heavy bike at the bottom of a hill without some real brakes.
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Postby Ace Rimmer » Wed Sep 17, 2008 4:20 pm

Fall off?
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Postby jelco » Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:31 pm

Ace Rimmer wrote:Fall off?

Stop the bike, not yourself! :P

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Postby Ace Rimmer » Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:58 pm

Well, it'll stop as gravity/inertia/whatever will only take it so far. :P
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Postby KingAl » Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:21 pm

Genius. Now, if they did that at the velodromes I'd have watched the Olympics :P
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Postby xander » Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:41 pm

MrBunsy wrote:Maybe if you're able to cycle up a hill without gears, but I can't imagine myself trying to stop a heavy bike at the bottom of a hill without some real brakes.

The back wheel stops spinning. You can control how forcefully that occurs by varying the amount of backforce you put on the pedal. Rather than having a pair of pads that slow the wheel through friction, you have a chain that forces the wheel to stop rotating. Other than the fact that you don't have a front brake (which, honestly, isn't that big a deal, because you need the front wheel to control the bike should you go into a skid), it works just as well as conventional brakes.

May I suggest that you actually try riding a fixed gear bicycle for a while before you criticize it?

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Postby Ace Rimmer » Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:47 pm

Those are great for kids. I had one when I was young and loved to go as fast as possible and then turn and slide. We (neighborhood kids) would spend hours trying to see who could make the longest darkest skid mark. :D
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Postby MrBunsy » Wed Sep 17, 2008 7:31 pm

xander wrote:May I suggest that you actually try riding a fixed gear bicycle for a while before you criticize it?

xander
I might have to, to see if it's as easy as you reckon. I just can't see how it could be as easy as squeezing a little handle.
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Postby Ace Rimmer » Wed Sep 17, 2008 7:33 pm

MrBunsy wrote:
xander wrote:May I suggest that you actually try riding a fixed gear bicycle for a while before you criticize it?

xander
I might have to, to see if it's as easy as you reckon. I just can't see how it could be as easy as squeezing a little handle.

Well:

1. Legs are usually stronger than hands.
2. Gears have more control over movement of wheels that two pads. (gears don't move, wheels don't either :P)
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Postby MrBunsy » Wed Sep 17, 2008 7:36 pm

Yeah, but brakes are levered so it only takes a small amount of squeezing to stop a bike doing a considerable speed.

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