Tuesday, 24 July 2007

The Single Speed Challenge

So, I've been thinking about buying a fixed-wheel bicycle for some time. I like the simplicity of fixies, with no gearing or derallieurs or the like. I like the difficult-to-steal nature of them, the purity of the concept. In fact, I've been bidding unsuccessfully for them on eBay for a while now. Not that I'm miffed about it, or anything.

Anyway, today, just to see how it felt - just for shits and giggles, you might say - I cycle-commuted (that's cycled both to and from work) using only one gear. There I was on my cheap and cheerful Saracen Tour, using neither the lovely Campag integrated gear shifters, nor the Shimano gear mechs. I left 12 of the 13 available gear ratios unexplored (interestingly, although there are 16 possible combinations of cogs, there are only 13 distinct gear ratios).

Why? Well since you ask, in that half-bored tone of voice, I was experimenting with the only-one-gear concept, just to see how it felt.

It felt pretty good :-)

For anyone that is remotely interested I used a 39/21, giving me around a 50 inch gear - a very easy gear.

No comments: