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Building a Fixie
#1
On my rides I notice that bare bones fixies are getting popular .

I was wondering ,is there anyway to convert a freewheel or a , freehub cassette wheel into a one gear non free spinning wheel.

Not that I want to do that right now , but for future info.

I like heaving gears and brakes. :-))
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#2
You can make a freewheel hub a fix by putting a fixed cog onto it and then use the lockring from an old style 3 piece bottom bracket. However, fixes like this should not really be ridden without hand brakes. Because the lockring goes on with standard threads (instead of reverse), there is a risk of the cog and lockring unscrewing when you try to backpedal/brake with your feet. Some people locktite the whole thing to make it more solid, but this isn't ideal for a variety of reasons. Note that you often also have to respace the axle and redish the wheel.

I don't know any way to "fix" a freehub other than filling it with glue, welding, etc.
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#3
So in your experience the only thing to do is get a fixie wheel?? No one makes conversion kits?
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#4
GeorgeET: Sheldon Brown's site has a lengthy article on how to do it: http://sheldonbrown.com/deakins/how-to-fixed-conversion.html

Honestly, with how complex it looks, I would almost just get a new wheel.
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#5
It's usually pretty straightforward. I just wouldn't ride a fix without handbrakes on a bike that didn't have a true fixed gear hub on it. Without a proper (reverse thread) lockring, there's always a chance that the cog could unthread just as you're using to slow down. That said, for riding in the city, I wouldn't ride a fix without hand brakes anyway. Even if you are very good at stopping with the wheel, it is still, at best, the equivalent of having a rear brake only which mean you have very poor brakes. I know lots of people who do it. But they all have stories of sliding into stuff because they couldn't stop in time. I ride a fix with just a front brake and it's fun and safe.
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#6
Ye 10-4 to buzz and DaveM

I too would like the best of both worlds hand brakes and a free spinning wheel for coasting.

Anyway I like my gears.

Here is a 85 Fuji I picked yp and spent twice its price to set it up. Now I have a custom bike. Waiting for a Nashbar TFX seat. This one looks nice but kicks my ass. :-))
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#7
Thanks for the link to Sheldons infoBuzz , like always lots of good info and nice fixie and singlespeed (can coast)wheels.
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#8
I have to second what Dave says about the front brake. I see a lot of people riding around here sans brake and really just shake my head. Not only does it seem like a bad idea, you can get ticketed here for not having one. Check CA laws, it may be similar.
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#9
Fixie riding is certainly growing, a local company to me makes a very nice range of fixie wheels using Novatec hubs and coloured rims. I also see that Affix have come up with a convertible hub that can be changed from fixed to free without turning the wheel over, ie, no need for a flip flop; http://www.affix-system.com/3_products_8_4.htm.
and sturmey archer have geared fixed hubs; http://www.sturmey-archer.com/products/hubs/cid/3/id/47
but I still wouldn't ride one myself, tried it once and never again, thank you.
And if you do change, remember the OLD may be different.(over locknut dimension)
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#10
I'm against creating fixies or anything that destroys the original design. But I suppose you could always weld the gear to the axle, not that I have tried mind you. Smile

Steve
Junkyard Tools rescued from the junkyard!
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#11
Sheldon Brown site gave great info, and ye getting a proper wheel is the best way to go IMO.

Although freewheel conversion would work and I like keeping a coasting wheel with hand brakes.

Fixie could be a killer downhill. :-))

BTW that frame you are welding is way to heavy for a bike. As per welding sprocket to hub be though considering the different alloys involved.
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#12
(07-07-2010, 05:30 PM)GeorgeET Wrote:  . . . BTW that frame you are welding is way to heavy for a bike. As per welding sprocket to hub be though considering the different alloys involved.

He-he, yeah that was just my poor attempt at humor. Smile

The photo above is the beginning of my welding table, now completed (below). At 200lbs dry-weight, I needed a stiff frame.

Steve
Junkyard Tools rescued from the junkyard!
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#13
Nice welding set up. Hope you are not using any asbestos. I have been using a modern product called rafasil to cover hot parts and protect items from splatter. Great to cover my Motorcycle headers when doing tune up. Do not ask how I know. :-))

Do you have oxy acetelyne and MIG set up too?
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#14
(07-08-2010, 05:31 PM)GeorgeET Wrote:  Nice welding set up. Hope you are not using any asbestos. I have been using a modern product called rafasil to cover hot parts and protect items from splatter. Great to cover my Motorcycle headers when doing tune up. Do not ask how I know. :-))

Do you have oxy acetelyne and MIG set up too?

Thanks Big Grin I haven't been using asbestos at all, thanks for the tip. About 2 years ago I wanted a Miller 180 MIG but decided on a Miller Thunderbolt XL ac-dc when the salesman offered it new for $470. The MIG 180 is almost twice that plus gas. Now I am wishing I had the MIG because I intend to weld more auto body sheet metal (22ga). But am saving money for a new one someday. Might go with the Hobart 187 because "they" say it is the same as Miller's 180 for less money. I decided against O/A because of higher household insurance premiums (explosion, fire etc).

I have a motorcycle too. It's a 1980 Honda CB 750cc Custom. I haven't started it since the mid-1990s so I need to work on it. Smile

Steve
Junkyard Tools rescued from the junkyard!
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#15
Ye well here are my other bikes. :-)))
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#16
What make/model are they? And what welding equipment do you have?

Steve
Junkyard Tools rescued from the junkyard!
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#17
Red is 91 BMW K75S, black is 82 BMW R100RT.

No personal welding equipment. The shop had lots, that was a quite a while back.
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