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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, I realize this might be a bit like asking "What's your average speed" on the general forum, but I'm a noob to fixed gear riding so be it...

What type of realistic downhill speed can I hope to maintain for a minute or so on a 42x16? I realize some of you have super spin capabilities but I'm looking more for a realistic number. I've had mine on four rides so far and notice I'm getting faster on the downhills but I don't have a computer yet. My area has lots of 400-600 ft vertical climbs, sometimes 10%+ but those are usually the shorter climbs.

Climbing hasn't bothered me. Descending does. Almost lost it the first ride - rear wheel was skipping side to side.
 

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FatTireFred said:
as a noob, you should have a brake... in which case it won't matter
It's still a legitimate question. But the answer is, it depends on how fast you can spin and still be stable. If I'm doing the math right, BJII's 40 mph would require about 194 rpm with that gear. I don't know anyone who can do that. I run a slightly higher gear than yours (39x14), and I think I've gotten close to 33 mph once or twice. That's about 150 rpm, and I can't do it for long. I use a brake when necessary.
 

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JCavilia said:
It's still a legitimate question. But the answer is, it depends on how fast you can spin and still be stable. If I'm doing the math right, BJII's 40 mph would require about 194 rpm with that gear. I don't know anyone who can do that. I run a slightly higher gear than yours (39x14), and I think I've gotten close to 33 mph once or twice. That's about 150 rpm, and I can't do it for long. I use a brake when necessary.
yeah I don't know...that's just what the guy claims on that Youtube vid...not many people can spin 200RPM, but I suppose it's possible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
FatTireFred said:
as a noob, you should have a brake... in which case it won't matter
Oh, I have a brake. 2 in fact! I haven't cared how cool I look in at least the last decade or so. I even left the reflectors on the wheels because I ride a lot at night.

It still matters because I really don't like braking on hills so I'm wondering what most people work up to. Also matters for considering group rides as I know I'll be lost on the downhills.
 

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I ran that same combo, and would see speeds just crossing 30mph on my computer, back when I used one. I cannot sustain it for any time.... and I now live practically in the mountains--- so I ride the brake a lot.

goldsbar said:
OK, I realize this might be a bit like asking "What's your average speed" on the general forum, but I'm a noob to fixed gear riding so be it...

What type of realistic downhill speed can I hope to maintain for a minute or so on a 42x16? I realize some of you have super spin capabilities but I'm looking more for a realistic number. I've had mine on four rides so far and notice I'm getting faster on the downhills but I don't have a computer yet. My area has lots of 400-600 ft vertical climbs, sometimes 10%+ but those are usually the shorter climbs.

Climbing hasn't bothered me. Descending does. Almost lost it the first ride - rear wheel was skipping side to side.
 
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I have a 44x16 and 30 MPH is doable for a while, 35 is begining to push it and ~40 I've only hit once and was scared ****less. A cadence of 200 is fast but not ridiculous.
 

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jains89 said:
I have a 44x16 and 30 MPH is doable for a while, 35 is begining to push it and ~40 I've only hit once and was scared ****less. A cadence of 200 is fast but not ridiculous.
Unless you are used to spinning at those cadences it's also a good recipe for a blown knee.
 

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Hate to burst the bubble, but "average speed," even on a fixie, really depends on a lot of things, like headwind, terrain, etc.

Why on earth would you want a computer on a fixie?
 

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Pablo said:
Hate to burst the bubble, but "average speed," even on a fixie, really depends on a lot of things, like headwind, terrain, etc.

Why on earth would you want a computer on a fixie?
That said...I'm guessing mid 20s would be easily attainable on flat ground with that kinda gearing. Whether you can hold it there for any length of time is another issue.
 

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Bocephus Jones II said:
That said...I'm guessing mid 20s would be easily attainable on flat ground with that kinda gearing. Whether you can hold it there for any length of time is another issue.
Yeah. I have 48x18 on mine and can maintain about 20 mph on my flat 15 mile commute to work pretty easily. I can get going a lot faster, of course, but intervals are for suckers.
 

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goldsbar said:
Oh, I have a brake. 2 in fact! I haven't cared how cool I look in at least the last decade or so. I even left the reflectors on the wheels because I ride a lot at night.

It still matters because I really don't like braking on hills so I'm wondering what most people work up to. Also matters for considering group rides as I know I'll be lost on the downhills.


don't go on groups rides (with gearies)...
fg noob + group ride = bad idea
 

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FatTireFred said:
don't go on groups rides (with gearies)...
fg noob + group ride = bad idea
+ a million.

Not to mention the fact that you'll get dropped like you're hot in a group ride with almost any, but especially that gearing.
 

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Pablo said:
+ a million.

Not to mention the fact that you'll get dropped like you're hot in a group ride with almost any, but especially that gearing.

Yep, I don't do group rides fixed and when singlespeed I usually hang out in the back of a paceline because I can't be as smooth when I'm pedalling like a squirrel on crack to keep up. I can comfortably do about 22-24 on the flats with 44/16. At least that is what I've been told, I refuse to put a computer on my singlespeed.
 

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I personally need about 80 gear inches to comfortably hang with a group but I'll definitely suffer on the climbs.
 

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52x18

I run 52x18 on my custom fixed. I've been riding it exclusively (on road) since my carbon bike was destroyed in a crash last Feb. I know the gearing is high, but I picked it because at crusing speed (18-20) its about 80-95 rpm.

I've seen 168 rpm on the computer trying to max out spin, but on fixed that would be a challenge, especially down hill when you can get spun out from the grade. Doesn't happen often with 52x18, but above 28mph is challenging.

You can ride fixed on group rides, just make sure you have the gearing, the strength and its not hilly. And bring a brake if its more than 25-30 miles. Stopping after constant pedaling for an hour and a half is challenging!

YMMV.
 

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I ride a 42x15 (75.6 gear inches) and can hang w/ a group no prob, but I live in the flat, humid lands of Houston, TX. Our biggest challenge here are the freeway overpasses and any headwind we can get. lol.

I ran a 42x16 initially, but found that it wasn't quite enough to keep up
 
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