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I'm new to the fixed speed world and have been ridign a new Langster for a few weeks now with a stock 48/16 ratio. problem is my commute and daily training involves a LOT of hill climbing....would an 18 be more beneficial or should I go bigger?
I'm sure there have been posts on this, but a quick search didn't produce much...
 

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This isn't a direct answer to your question but this is more a matter of personal preference and length/grade of hills climbed. Use your road bike for comparison, find out the gear inch of various combinations and try your commute without shifting. Decide which one works best for you and match the gear inch measurement to a cog/chain ring combo.

That said, you'll see a lot of commuter fixed riders find 70 gear inches to be a sweet spot. Typical set up is 42x16.
 

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Skid mark Homer rocks.

It is a personal thing. Most of the guys I know run 42x16, 48x18, for general stuff, I like 44x17 with 35c tires. Bigger tires make the wheel bigger which ups the gear inches. I run I think 72.5 or something. Just feel right.
 

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i don't think there is a right answer.....

i think you'll probably end up buying different rings and cogs as you go. i live in wv, and you are either going up or down. not exactly perfect for single speed road bikes, but what the hey. when i put mine together i went with a 46 x 18. little lower than the 42 x 16. first ride and i went and orderd a 42 for the hills. by the time it showed up, i was a little more used to the gear, and never put it on. fitness improved i guess. now the 44 x 18 feels a little big sometimes, and sometimes i want bigger. of course i don't go out to the mountains on the fixie yet, but at some point i will and will probably put on the 42 for some serious steep hill sprints. i do feel that the smaller ring and cog combo is much easier to do skip stops with, for some reason.
 

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48 x 16 seems really tall to me! On my new bike, I found that the stock 48 x 18 was a little big, so I dropped the chainring to a 47. While it's only a one-tooth difference - from a 72 g.i. to a 70.5 - it really made the bike more fun to ride. I think it's worth noting that it's important to have the right gear combo for riding flats and descents as well - the whole thing is about compromise; the guy who recommended a 70-inch gear hit the nail on the head, IMO. If you're going to experiment with new combos, remember that chainrings allow you to fine tune the gear inches in smaller increments than cogs do, but cogs cost about $25 and chainrings about $65.
 

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Depends where you live, a lot of chicago type ppl run something in the 50/15 region or bigger. Most fixt's I've seen here in mpls don't use anything much bigger than 44 or 45 with 15 or 16t rear. I personally go 44/15 which lets me get up most hills here and I only get excessively spinny on a downhill of a mile or more, of which there are only a couple in the cities.
 

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44x15 for me.

I'd recommend starting by approximating or equaling the gear ratio that you use most often on your geared bike. Learn to handle the ups and downs and get help for one or the other according to what you need.
 

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bahueh said:
I'm new to the fixed speed world and have been ridign a new Langster for a few weeks now with a stock 48/16 ratio. problem is my commute and daily training involves a LOT of hill climbing....would an 18 be more beneficial or should I go bigger?
I'm sure there have been posts on this, but a quick search didn't produce much...
Well, that's a pretty big gear for hilly terrain, but it's hard for any of us to tell you what you'd find ideal. I use a 44/16.
 

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the standard off-season training gear (for roadies) on fixed bikes used to be 70 inches so that's a great place to start. it's always best to start smaller and change to a higher gear in my experience; many people i know have done it the other way around which ends up reducing fitness and causing knee probs sometimes. i personally ride a 44x18, about a 69 inch and i love it. i live in pittsburgh, which = all hills, all the time.
 

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wooden legs said:
the standard off-season training gear (for roadies) on fixed bikes used to be 70 inches so that's a great place to start. i personally ride a 44x18, about a 69 inch and i love it.
44 x18 is more like a 66; a 46 x 18 will give you a 69. I'm going to drop a tooth on my 47 x 18 chainring setup to see if I like 69 better than 70.5; I only wish it wasn't so expensive to experiment with the various combinations, but I think it's worth it when you find that perfect gear like you have.
 

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I run 49:19 (68 g") for the hills and mountains around Pasadena in SoCal. It's a little steep at times but overall a good gear.
 

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We do lots of short steep hills.

bahueh said:
I'm new to the fixed speed world and have been ridign a new Langster for a few weeks now with a stock 48/16 ratio. problem is my commute and daily training involves a LOT of hill climbing....would an 18 be more beneficial or should I go bigger?
I'm sure there have been posts on this, but a quick search didn't produce much...
We actually do hill repeats fixed. For a long time I was running 64", just lately I changed to 68". After a few rides I have adapted to the slightly harder gear just fine and it works better on the flat. My wife who is much lighter than I runs 73" everywhere.
 

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I run a 48/18 for an all purpose gear. If I lived in a dead flat area I would run a 48/17 or 16. It is hard to give up too much to climb hills because it just makes it rougher on you on the way down and on the flats. After a while, the hills aren't as bad as the descents.
 

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What the h*ll?!

Man guys, I must be a wuss! I run a 39X17 fixed and there are two hills on my commute to work that just about kill me. The first one is within sight of my house and the second is at about halfway. If I was ever to ride up these hills with somebody else I could never talk during the hills because I am breathing so hard. It seems like my ride is mostly uphill to work and somewhat downhill going home. I live real close the the MN river and there are lots of little creeks that drain down from the lakes near my work. I have yet to go down either of the hills on the way home without using the front brake and when I rode my geared road bike I could spin out a 53X12 on the way down. The tires on the fixed are studded Nokians 700X35, 36 spoke wheels, and I haven't ever ridden any other tires on it yet. No computer either-can't see it in the dark..
So what's the story? I feel a lot stronger than back in August. Am I missing something you guys are doing different or am I not that strong yet? You guys are running HUGE gears to me.
:confused: MN Dan
 

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MN Dan said:
Man guys, I must be a wuss! I run a 39X17 fixed and there are two hills on my commute to work that just about kill me. Am I missing something you guys are doing different or am I not that strong yet? You guys are running HUGE gears to me.
:confused: MN Dan

Run what you brung. If it works for you, that's the right gear. I see guys running 53 x 16 around here, but I can't possiby imagine how. I guess some people don't believe in spinning! I do, so I run either a 69 or a 72 gear inch. Both work fine for most of my applications. So don't worry about what anyone else is doing; you'll know the right gear when you find it.
 

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I use a 44x16 for northern VA riding. I find for me it's the best compromise of climbing, decending, and flats. When I first started riding fixte, I rode a 44x18 around here to get my legs accustomed to the climbing. It was a pain on the downhills to, because, it would spin so quickly.
 
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