"fixed" freewheel, variable gear?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Byron Sheppard, Nov 2, 2003.

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  1. I've been reading all the threads about fixed gear and am sold on the benefits. Can't wait
    to try one.

    But while thinking about it during a ride one day, I got to wondering if anyone has tried fixing the
    freewheel (or freehub) but still having a cassette and multiple gears? This would seem to provide
    many of the benefits of a fixed gear while still offering the flexibility to maintain cadence
    through gear changes. It also means that it might be possible to convert a bike to "fixedwheel" or
    "fixedhub" with no other drivetrain changes.

    So why is this a silly idea? Has anyone tried it? Suggestions for how to fix the hub?

    thanks, byron
     
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  2. S. Anderson

    S. Anderson Guest

    "Byron Sheppard" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:BBC9E98C.E269%[email protected]...
    >
    > So why is this a silly idea? Has anyone tried it? Suggestions for how to
    fix
    > the hub?
    >

    If you stop pedalling, the derailleur winds up and breaks off the derailleur tab..not good.

    Cheers,

    Scott..
     
  3. Kinkycowboy

    Kinkycowboy Guest

    On Sun, 02 Nov 2003 06:51:49 GMT, Byron Sheppard <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I've been reading all the threads about fixed gear and am sold on the benefits. Can't wait
    >to try one.
    >
    >But while thinking about it during a ride one day, I got to wondering if anyone has tried fixing
    >the freewheel (or freehub) but still having a cassette and multiple gears? This would seem to
    >provide many of the benefits of a fixed gear while still offering the flexibility to maintain
    >cadence through gear changes. It also means that it might be possible to convert a bike to
    >"fixedwheel" or "fixedhub" with no other drivetrain changes.
    >
    >So why is this a silly idea? Has anyone tried it? Suggestions for how to fix the hub?
    >
    >thanks, byron

    Apart from snapping off the derailleur, simply locking down the freewheel doesn't get over the
    problem of reverse chain tension unscrewing the freewheel from the hub. If you want a fixed wheel
    without a new wheel, there's an expensive converter which puts fixed cog and lockring threads on a
    shimano or compatible freehub, and a similar product is also available for threaded freewheel hubs.
    If you really want a multispeed fixed, you need to invest in some rare and very expensive retro
    parts from Campag or Sturmey-Archer.

    But why make life complex? Just rebuild your back wheel around a track hub and learn to pedal fast!

    Kinky Cowboy

    *Your milage may vary Batteries not included May contain traces of nuts.
     
  4. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On Sun, 02 Nov 2003 06:51:49 GMT, Byron Sheppard <[email protected]> may have said:

    >I've been reading all the threads about fixed gear and am sold on the benefits. Can't wait
    >to try one.
    >
    >But while thinking about it during a ride one day, I got to wondering if anyone has tried fixing
    >the freewheel (or freehub) but still having a cassette and multiple gears? This would seem to
    >provide many of the benefits of a fixed gear while still offering the flexibility to maintain
    >cadence through gear changes. It also means that it might be possible to convert a bike to
    >"fixedwheel" or "fixedhub" with no other drivetrain changes.
    >
    >So why is this a silly idea? Has anyone tried it? Suggestions for how to fix the hub?

    As noted, if there's no freewheel, within a few minutes there will be no rear derailleur either. I
    suppose that someone with the requisite machine tools and skills could create the world's most
    nukeproof rear der to solve this particular problem, but I'm not sure I want to think about the cost
    and/or weight.

    If you want multiple speeds in a fixie, it's theoretically possible to get them using a multi-speed
    gearhub, if you can find one or if you have the skill to modify a freewheel-equipped unit.

    --
    My email address is antispammed; pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail. Yes, I have a killfile. If I
    don't respond to something, it's also possible that I'm busy.
     
  5. In article <BBC9E98C.E269%[email protected]>,
    Byron Sheppard <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I've been reading all the threads about fixed gear and am sold on the benefits. Can't wait to
    > try one.
    >
    > But while thinking about it during a ride one day, I got to wondering if anyone has tried fixing
    > the freewheel (or freehub) but still having a cassette and multiple gears? This would seem to
    > provide many of the benefits of a fixed gear while still offering the flexibility to maintain
    > cadence through gear changes. It also means that it might be possible to convert a bike to
    > "fixedwheel" or "fixedhub" with no other drivetrain changes.
    >
    > So why is this a silly idea? Has anyone tried it? Suggestions for how to fix the hub?

    As another poster has pointed out, derailleurs can't work with fixies. Sturmey-Archer did make a
    somewhat desirable 3-speed fixed-gear-compatible hub shifter.

    If you couldn't find one of those, another option would be the Schlumpf two-speed "mountain drive"
    BB, which might work with a fixed gear:

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/schlumpf.html

    Of course, you already know about all the options involving rear hubs threaded on both sides, so you
    can go fixed/free, fixed/multiple-speed freewheel, or fixed/other-fixed by flipping over a wheel.

    Ask Sheldon,
    --
    Ryan Cousineau, [email protected] http://www.sfu.ca/~rcousine President, Fabrizio Mazzoleni Fan Club
     
  6. On Sun, 02 Nov 2003 15:12:46 +0000, KinkyCowboy wrote:

    >>So why is this a silly idea? Has anyone tried it? Suggestions for how to fix the hub?

    Sorry. It is a silly idea. Try to slow your legs down, once, and the chain will end up wrapped
    around stuff, and badly jammed. The springs on the derailleur that keep the chain from going slack
    will be stretched by any pedaling slower than your speed would dictate (much less trying to stop),
    and the chain would go slack on the top, dangling down into the spokes.

    > Apart from snapping off the derailleur, simply locking down the freewheel doesn't get over the
    > problem of reverse chain tension unscrewing the freewheel from the hub.

    That is the least of your worries.

    --

    David L. Johnson

    __o | What is objectionable, and what is dangerous about extremists is _`\(,_ | not that they are
    extreme, but that they are intolerant. (_)/ (_) | --Robert F. Kennedy
     
  7. KinkyCowboy <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > On Sun, 02 Nov 2003 06:51:49 GMT, Byron Sheppard <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >I've been reading all the threads about fixed gear and am sold on the benefits. Can't wait to
    > >try one.
    ><cut> Apart from snapping off the derailleur, simply locking down the freewheel doesn't get over
    >the problem of reverse chain tension unscrewing the freewheel from the hub. If you want a fixed
    >wheel without a new wheel, there's an expensive converter which puts fixed cog and lockring threads
    >on a shimano or compatible freehub, and a similar product is also available for threaded freewheel
    >hubs. If you really want a multispeed fixed, you need to invest in some rare and very expensive
    >retro parts from Campag or Sturmey-Archer.
    >

    You can simply add a screw on sprocket to a standard freewheel hub and ride. Lock ring not required,
    but, of course, re-spacing/dishing is.

    Having more than one sprocket is possible simply by screwing another on (never tried more than two),
    using bottom bracket lockrings as a spacer, but prevents optimum chainline being used.

    It is necessary to re-tension the chain on changin gear(by moving the wheel fore/aft in the
    dropouts or).

    As previous posters note, a derailleur is not an option.

    Andrew Webster
     
  8. Werehatrack wrote:

    > As noted, if there's no freewheel, within a few minutes there will be no rear derailleur either. I
    > suppose that someone with the requisite machine tools and skills could create the world's most
    > nukeproof rear der to solve this particular problem, but I'm not sure I want to think about the
    > cost and/or weight.

    Didn't one of the earliest shifting systems involve reaching back and opening the QR, then using a
    fork sort of thing to push the chain on to the next cog?

    Wouldn't this work on a fixie? (My interest is purely theoretical, I have no desire to actually try
    this, mind you.

    -Dondo

    --
    What am I on? I'm on my bike, o__ 6 hours a day, busting my ass. ,>/'_ What are you on? --Lance
    Armstrong (_)\(_)
     
  9. meb

    meb New Member

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    I remember someone once reporting an internal gear hub failing in this manner- had his gear selections, just no freewheeling.
     
  10. meb

    meb New Member

    Joined:
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    How about using a front triple der mount fore and below the sprockets in conjunction with a push-pull tensioner pair that takes the chain slack out of the non-tensile sprocket-chainring run?
    Probably only gives you 3 speeds (9 if you have a front chainring triple;12 if you use a Schlumpf with double chainrings up front).
     
  11. >> But while thinking about it during a ride one day, I got to wondering if anyone has tried fixing
    >> the freewheel (or freehub) but still having a cassette and multiple gears?

    >> So why is this a silly idea? Has anyone tried it? Suggestions for how to fix the hub?
    >>
    >> thanks, byron
    >
    > Apart from snapping off the derailleur, simply locking down the freewheel doesn't get over the
    > problem of reverse chain tension unscrewing the freewheel from the hub. If you want a fixed wheel
    > without a new wheel, there's an expensive converter which puts fixed cog and lockring threads on a
    > shimano or compatible freehub, and a similar product is also available for threaded freewheel
    > hubs. If you really want a multispeed fixed, you need to invest in some rare and very expensive
    > retro parts from Campag or Sturmey-Archer.
    >
    > But why make life complex? Just rebuild your back wheel around a track hub and learn to
    > pedal fast!

    Good and appreciated advice from everyone; thanks. I'll just build a single fixie and fly.
     
  12. In article <[email protected]>,
    Captain Dondo <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Werehatrack wrote:
    >
    > > As noted, if there's no freewheel, within a few minutes there will be no rear derailleur either.
    > > I suppose that someone with the requisite machine tools and skills could create the world's most
    > > nukeproof rear der to solve this particular problem, but I'm not sure I want to think about the
    > > cost and/or weight.
    >
    > Didn't one of the earliest shifting systems involve reaching back and opening the QR, then using a
    > fork sort of thing to push the chain on to the next cog?

    Yes.

    > Wouldn't this work on a fixie? (My interest is purely theoretical, I have no desire to actually
    > try this, mind you.

    Probably, but it would be diabolical. The reason you opened the QR was to let the wheel slide
    forward and back to take up the chain slack. So you're suggesting releasing the QR, tapping the
    lever to shift the chain, then re-engaging the QR, but oh yeah, since it's a fixie, you can't stop
    pedalling.

    You know, there's a reason the derailleur was invented,
    --
    Ryan Cousineau, [email protected] http://www.sfu.ca/~rcousine President, Fabrizio Mazzoleni Fan Club
     
  13. B.C. Cletta

    B.C. Cletta Guest

    Captain Dondo <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Werehatrack wrote:
    >
    > > As noted, if there's no freewheel, within a few minutes there will be no rear derailleur either.
    > > I suppose that someone with the requisite machine tools and skills could create the world's most
    > > nukeproof rear der to solve this particular problem, but I'm not sure I want to think about the
    > > cost and/or weight.
    >
    > Didn't one of the earliest shifting systems involve reaching back and opening the QR, then using a
    > fork sort of thing to push the chain on to the next cog?
    >
    > Wouldn't this work on a fixie? (My interest is purely theoretical, I have no desire to actually
    > try this, mind you.
    >
    > -Dondo

    (realizing that i've never rode one) i think that you got to coast briefly during an upshift to
    allow the cogset & wheel to move backward to suck up the chain slack.

    ...and at the prices the Cambio Corsa command, probable never will.
     
  14. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    Byron Sheppard wrote:

    > I've been reading all the threads about fixed gear and am sold on the benefits. Can't wait to
    > try one.
    >
    > But while thinking about it during a ride one day, I got to wondering if anyone has tried fixing
    > the freewheel (or freehub) but still having a cassette and multiple gears? This would seem to
    > provide many of the benefits of a fixed gear while still offering the flexibility to maintain
    > cadence through gear changes. It also means that it might be possible to convert a bike to
    > "fixedwheel" or "fixedhub" with no other drivetrain changes.
    >
    > So why is this a silly idea? Has anyone tried it? Suggestions for how to fix the hub?

    See the earlier post about a binding freehub body. The chain bunches up when you try to coast. Some
    riders who ditz around with tensioners, a fixed hub and vertical frame ends find this as well.

    --
    Andrew Muzi www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April, 1971
     
  15. Ant

    Ant Guest

    Ryan Cousineau <[email protected]> wrote in message [regarding multi speed fixed gears]

    >another option would be the Schlumpf two-speed "mountain drive" BB, which might work with a
    >fixed gear:
    >
    > http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/schlumpf.html

    wow. what an idea. ive heard that there are still multi speed bottom bracket setups on the
    market. up to five speeds, did i hear? would these work for fixed gear? are they made for
    standard bb shells?

    very curious, anthony
     
  16. Jeff Wills

    Jeff Wills Guest

    [email protected] (ant) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>... <snip>
    > wow. what an idea. ive heard that there are still multi speed bottom bracket setups on the
    > market. up to five speeds, did i hear? would these work for fixed gear? are they made for
    > standard bb shells?
    >
    > very curious, anthony

    Oww... that's digging into the dusty recesses of memories best left undisturbed.

    IIRC, there is/was a 5-speed crank-mounted planetary gear transmission. It is/was produced by
    Shimano for the Japan-only market. I remember seeing pictures of it in Mountain Bike Action many,
    many years ago.

    Jeff
     
  17. [email protected] (Qui si parla Campagnolo) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > Why not just weld a freewheel together, add as many cogs as you wish and then stop to change the
    > gearing, must have LONG dropouts for chain tension tho-
    >
    > Peter Chisholm

    If you have two power links in the chain you can add/remove a few links easily enough, of course,
    quick gear changes are out, but worth it for a long ascent.

    Andrew Webster
     
  18. B.C. Cletta

    B.C. Cletta Guest

    [email protected] (ant) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Ryan Cousineau <[email protected]> wrote in message [regarding multi speed fixed gears]
    >
    > >another option would be the Schlumpf two-speed "mountain drive" BB, which might work with a
    > >fixed gear:
    > >
    > > http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/schlumpf.html
    >
    > wow. what an idea. ive heard that there are still multi speed bottom bracket setups on the
    > market. up to five speeds, did i hear? would these work for fixed gear? are they made for
    > standard bb shells?

    buried somewhere on the w-pg in the fine print it tells you it's not rated of FG used.
     
  19. B.C. Cletta

    B.C. Cletta Guest

    [email protected] (ant) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Ryan Cousineau <[email protected]> wrote in message [regarding multi speed fixed gears]
    >
    > >another option would be the Schlumpf two-speed "mountain drive" BB, which might work with a
    > >fixed gear:
    > >
    > > http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/schlumpf.html
    >
    > wow. what an idea. ive heard that there are still multi speed bottom bracket setups on the
    > market. up to five speeds, did i hear? would these work for fixed gear? are they made for
    > standard bb shells?
    >
    > very curious, anthony

    see No 9: <http://www.schlumpf.ch/md_engl.htm
     
  20. Kinkycowboy

    Kinkycowboy Guest

    On 3 Nov 2003 10:49:10 -0800, [email protected] (Andrew Webster) wrote:

    >[email protected] (Qui si parla Campagnolo) wrote in message
    >news:<[email protected]>...
    >
    >> Why not just weld a freewheel together, add as many cogs as you wish and then stop to change the
    >> gearing, must have LONG dropouts for chain tension tho-
    >>
    >> Peter Chisholm
    >
    >If you have two power links in the chain you can add/remove a few links easily enough, of course,
    >quick gear changes are out, but worth it for a long ascent.
    >
    >Andrew Webster

    Or use a double chainring and two sprockets (should be able to screw two track sprockets onto the
    long thread of a 6/7 speed freewheel hub). 42x15 and 38x19 for example gives 76" and 54" gears with
    no change of length, and you could probably arrange a perfect chainline on both combos with a bit of
    shimming. You might even be able to change gear without loosening the rear wheel.

    Kinky Cowboy

    *Your milage may vary Batteries not included May contain traces of nuts.
     
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