Fixed Gear Bicycles

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Fixed Gear Bicycles
Fixed Gear Bicycles

Sample fixed gear bicycles on JensonUSA

Fixed gear bicycles (or single speed bicycles) are arguably the most dynamic bicycles there is on the market. They show beauty and functionality in simplicity. Single speed bikes are bicycles that run on only one gear ratio. With that being said, these types of bicycles do not have any methods of changing bicycle gears because of their simplistic and caveman design.

A lot of us have experienced, in one way or another, being on a single speed bicycle when we were young, and have probably forgotten about these beautiful creations because of the fast changing world that we live in today. But I can assure you that fixed gear bicycles are here to stay. Many contemporary designs of fixed gear bicycles are incorporated in modern day bikes, including cruisers bikes, mountain bikes, road bikes and more types of bicycles.

Single Speed Bicycle Types

Fixed gear bicycles are subdivided into two: those that have free wheel mechanism, and those that do not have a free wheel mechanism. Take a look:

Bikes With Fixed Gear

Fixed gear bicycle is a single speed bicycle that does not have a free wheel mechanism. This means that if the rear wheel keeps turning, then the bicycle pedals also keeps turning. The way to stop the bike from rolling is by applying pressure against the roll of the pedals. This type of mechanism is common with old cruisers bicycles.

Bikes With a Free Wheel Mechanism

Another type of single speed bikes are bicycles that DO HAVE a free wheel mechanism: This means that the cyclist can stop spinning the pedals: There is no direct connection between the pedals and the wheel. Normal bicycle brakes are used to stop the bikes from rolling.

Single Speed Bikes vs. Chainless Bikes

Some are mixing up the “single speed bicycle” with the “chainless bicycle”. A chainless bicycle (also known as a “shaft driven bicycle” or a “dynamic bicycle”) basically uses a drive shaft instead of a bicycle chain as propulsion mechanism. Still, chainless bicycles can have multiple gear ratios, and not only a single speed.

Fixed Gear Bicycles – Pro’s and Con’s

There are a few factors that sets the fixed gear bicycle apart from the multiple gear ratio or multiple speed bicycle.


Fixed gear bicycles are basically cheaper than their multiple gear counterparts. Most of them are lighter and simpler to maintain because of nonexistent gearing systems. Maintenance, efficiency, and a stronger base are also traits of single speed bikes. Since simplicity is one of the goals of fixed gear bicycles, they are constructed without suspensions, or with only front suspensions.


Since there are two sides to a coin, the disadvantage is the lack of versatility. Since a fixed gear bicycle offers only a single gear ratio, it cannot go beyond its gear range. It is also difficult to pedal below its gear range and thus is difficult if the topography becomes an incline. Fixed gear bicycles also have its disadvantages. Since it cannot coast, its top speed is only determined by the ability of the cyclist to pedal fast.

Mountain and Road Fixed Gear Bicycles?

Nowadays, the different new bicycle designs – like road racing bicycles, hybrid bicycles, and mountain bikes – may be incorporated with a single speed mechanism. Take a look:

Single Speed Mountain Bikes

Unlike old mountain bikes that were designed with single speed ratios, new single speed mountain bikes fitted with these are designed to have easier and slower gear ratios. This makes climbing hills easier and faster. Take a look at the 17″ Redline Gray Monocog Mountain Bike

Fixed Gear Bicycles

Single Speed Road Bikes

If road bike cycling is considered then the single speed bicycle is designed to have a higher gear ratio for fast riding.

Fixed Gear Bicycles

Where to Buy Fixed Gear Bicycles?

If you are interested in buying fixed gear bicycles you can buy them in one of these trusted online stores:

Moving To Fixed Gear Bicycles...

If we were talking about shifting to chainless bicycle I would say - It is impossible, but alteration from multiple geared bicycles into single speed bikes is possible, and is not uncommon. This is done through removal of derailleur and the other parts associated with multiple geared bicycles. A simple way for the conversion is by using pre - existing bicycle crank set and free wheel. This also requires the bicycle chain to be trimmed down to the desired gear length. Though this is much cheaper, the result is less efficient. A better way is by replacing the free wheel and changing the rear wheel.

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