need enlightment on SS

Discussion in 'Australia and New Zealand' started by amirm, Jun 8, 2004.

  1. amirm

    amirm Guest

    Probably not relevant since I commute in Canberra. but what's the
    special deal about SS? My slow wit, I know. The gear combo I use every
    day during commuting range between 42X17 and 52X12. Although the
    majority of the distance is ridden on 42X13, I still guess an SS would
    be too wasteful. Can someone shed some light?

    Cheers,



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    Tags:


  2. hippy

    hippy Guest

    amirm wrote:
    > Probably not relevant since I commute in Canberra. but what's the
    > special deal about SS? My slow wit, I know. The gear combo I use every
    > day during commuting range between 42X17 and 52X12. Although the
    > majority of the distance is ridden on 42X13, I still guess an SS would
    > be too wasteful. Can someone shed some light?




    Ahh, that most difficult question..

    http://mtbr.com/faq/ssfaq.shtml#ssWhySS
    http://www.trianglemtb.com/pages/passion/whySS.html

    Personally, I built one because I saw people raving about them when they
    were an 'underground', uncommon thing. I mean, who takes a perfectly
    good geared bike and removes most of the parts!

    It was silly enough of an idea for me to want to have a go :) A large
    part of it was also to do with improving performance. With an SS you
    HAVE to push a bigger gear than normal up the hills and you HAVE to spin
    like mad on the downhills and flats (well, you can coast, but I'm
    talking about trying to push it - if you are a habitual coaster, try a
    fixie :) ).

    The bike is also simpler, and lighter with less parts to break and
    it's less attractive to thieves (not that this was an issue with my
    crusty GT!).

    They make great commuters and hack bikes because you are not worried
    about expensive derailers getting smashed off whilst off-road or
    expensive cassettes being trashed in bad weather.

    Then again, you can also spend an absolute fortune on a custom SS with
    all kinds of trick parts (Paul, White Industries, etc make SS specific
    driveline parts that cost a bomb!).

    With no gears to worry about, once you've got used to it, the bike is
    really nice to ride. Like every other ss'er says, you really do get to
    think more about what is happening around you and what you are seeing on
    the road/trail.

    They are cool. I reckon anyone with an old bike and reasonable fitness
    should try it for a while.

    hippy



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  3. Koon Yong

    Koon Yong Guest

    hippy wrote:
    > Ahh, that most difficult question..
    > http://mtbr.com/faq/ssfaq.shtml#ssWhySS
    > http://www.trianglemtb.com/pages/passion/whySS.html
    > Personally, I built one because I saw people raving about them when they
    > were an 'underground', uncommon thing. I mean, who takes a perfectly
    > good geared bike and removes most of the parts!
    > It was silly enough of an idea for me to want to have a go :) A large
    > part of it was also to do with improving performance. With an SS you
    > HAVE to push a bigger gear than normal up the hills and you HAVE to spin
    > like mad on the downhills and flats (well, you can coast, but I'm
    > talking about trying to push it - if you are a habitual coaster, try a
    > fixie :) ).
    > The bike is also simpler, and lighter with less parts to break and
    > it's less attractive to thieves (not that this was an issue with my
    > crusty GT!).
    > They make great commuters and hack bikes because you are not worried
    > about expensive derailers getting smashed off whilst off-road or
    > expensive cassettes being trashed in bad weather.
    > Then again, you can also spend an absolute fortune on a custom SS with
    > all kinds of trick parts (Paul, White Industries, etc make SS specific
    > driveline parts that cost a bomb!).
    > With no gears to worry about, once you've got used to it, the bike is
    > really nice to ride. Like every other ss'er says, you really do get to
    > think more about what is happening around you and what you are seeing on
    > the road/trail.
    > They are cool. I reckon anyone with an old bike and reasonable fitness
    > should try it for a while.
    > hippy




    Yeah ... all the above ...

    Plus the SS is SO MUCH MORE FUN to ride.

    So many times on my commute I see guys drop chains, mis-shift, stuck in
    the wrong gear ... etc.

    Me? I just cruise along ... It's amazing how much more you notice around
    you and enjoy your ride when your brain isn't worried about breaking a
    derailer or figuring out the right gear to be in.

    I don't even have a geared bike anymore ... been without one for the
    last 3.5 years. Oh ... I haven't ridden a freewheel bike in the last 2
    years either.

    Cheers Koon



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  4. hippy

    hippy Guest

    >Originally posted by Koon Yong Plus the SS is SO MUCH MORE FUN to ride.

    So true.

    >I don't even have a geared bike anymore ... been without one for the
    >last 3.5 years. Oh ... I haven't ridden a freewheel >bike in the last 2
    >years either.


    Nice! But I still need a geared bike or two for hammering Beach Rd. and
    climbing in the 'nongs so I'll never be exclusively SS.

    Where in Melbourne do you usually ride? Road/Off-road?

    hippy
    - who is looking out at the rain and thinking not riding tonight is a
    'good' thing :)



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  5. amirm

    amirm Guest

    Thanks Hippy. Now I got some idea. :)

    I remember back in my childhood days Chinese-built SS bikes were
    prevalent in my home town. They were pretty heavy with all those
    mudguards, racks and steel dark green frames. Riding them on those huge
    28" wheels asked for a good work out. They phased out quickly as
    Japanese tourers dominated the market in late '70s. Wow that many years
    have passed, and I wasn't on newsgroups all that time! ;)

    Probably SS is not my cuppa tea for now. Traumatic memories of heavy SS
    in childhood, eh? Maybe. Thanks goodness that didn't make me an SS Nazi!



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  6. Koon Yong

    Koon Yong Guest

    hippy wrote:
    > >Originally posted by Koon Yong

    > Nice! But I still need a geared bike or two for hammering Beach Rd. and
    > climbing in the 'nongs so I'll never be exclusively SS.
    > Where in Melbourne do you usually ride? Road/Off-road?




    I mostly commute nowadays from my home in Brunswick West to Melbourne
    Uni where I work.

    On the weekends, I'll go to my girlfriend's place which is in south
    yarra and that's about it. Sometimes, when she plays tennis, I'll just
    wander around the streets/yarra river trail in the area.

    I haven't really ridden offroad in over a year. I have gone
    occansionally with my fixie MTB around some easy single track/fireroad
    that's alittle off the capital city trail ... but nothing major. I don't
    drive so getting to some nice trails is an issue.

    Now that I have my Fuji Track bike, I hope to do more regular longer
    distance rides to build up some endurance. Just working on getting a
    front caliper at the moment.

    Cheers Koon



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  7. Koon Yong

    Koon Yong Guest

    amirm wrote:
    > I remember back in my childhood days Chinese-built SS bikes were
    > prevalent in my home town. They were pretty heavy with all those
    > mudguards, racks and steel dark green frames. Riding them on those huge
    > 28" wheels asked for a good work out. They phased out quickly as
    > Japanese tourers dominated the market in late '70s. Wow that many years
    > have passed, and I wasn't on newsgroups all that time! ;)
    > Probably SS is not my cuppa tea for now. Traumatic memories of heavy SS
    > in childhood, eh? Maybe. Thanks goodness that didn't make me an SS Nazi!




    I remember those china bikes. You can still buy them in most SE asian
    countries. I remember seeing a docu where these guys in china would race
    these bikes carrying a crate load of veggies at the back ... going
    pretty fast too.

    Well times have changed and you can get an SS built at under 21 pounds
    and not silly "break-in-half-after-one-crash" light either.

    cheers Koon



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  8. In article <[email protected]>,
    hippy <[email protected]> wrote:

    > who is looking out at the rain and thinking not riding tonight is a
    > 'good' thing


    I just got in and it's beautiful out there. Rain to keep you cool, wind
    to dry you off, bike gets a clean... and trucks with a bigger wake than
    the Queen Mary.

    --
    Shane Stanley
     
  9. Gags

    Gags Guest

    "amirm" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > Probably not relevant since I commute in Canberra. but what's the
    > special deal about SS? My slow wit, I know. The gear combo I use every
    > day during commuting range between 42X17 and 52X12. Although the
    > majority of the distance is ridden on 42X13, I still guess an SS would
    > be too wasteful. Can someone shed some light?
    >
    > Cheers,
    >

    Where in Canberra do you ride??? I was commuting from Ngunnawal to Campbell
    for 18mths or so and it was great as pretty well the whole trip was on bike
    paths or back streets and there was not much in the way of hills (Going up
    behind the war memorial was probably the hardest part of the trip).

    I commuted every day and can still remember one -8degrees morning when my
    water bottle froze and I couldn't have a drink without sticking it inside my
    jacket for a while to defrost. I never wore any sort of ear or head warmers
    and it was always the first 5 min or so that I didn't like in the mornings
    (used to get killer ice cream headaches) but then I would warm up and it
    would be OK.

    This week I have just finished building up my singlespeed mtn bike and it
    has definately worked my legs harder than I normally do on the 27 speed. I
    am still playing around with gear ratios and went from a 36/15 to 36/13 but
    I still need a slightly higher gear. I am now planning to put a larger cog
    on both front and rear to get a slightly higher gear.

    If you have a spare bike, give it a crack......I did it on the cheap and
    knocked the pins out of a couple of old rear clusters to separate all the
    cogs and the little plastic spacers. I now have a selection of cogs of
    various sizes and enough spacers to put either side of the one that I am
    using so that the chain is straight between the front and rear cogs. We
    have had a bit of rain down here in Melb this week and so the SS has been
    great as I can just hose it down and then oil it up again in about 2 minutes
    flat.

    Ride on.

    Gags
     
  10. hippy

    hippy Guest

    Originally posted by Shane Stanley
    >>In article <[email protected]>, hippy <usenet-
    >>[email protected]> wrote:
    >>> who is looking out at the rain and thinking not riding tonight is a
    >>> 'good' thing


    >I just got in and it's beautiful out there. Rain to keep you cool, wind
    >to dry you off, bike gets a clean... and trucks with a bigger wake than
    >the Queen Mary.


    Rain to give me pneumonia, wind to help the rain give me pneumonia, bike
    gets covered in road grit.. ;)

    I currently don't have a shower at home (hot water unit blew up) so I'm
    not riding these few nights home so that I don't have to go to bed
    dirty. Bucket washing ain't gonna happen! :)

    It gives me time to read and build by immune system up by sitting on
    the train :)

    hippy



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  11. amirm

    amirm Guest

    Gags wrote:
    > "amirm" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:nYtxc.73-
    > [email protected]:[email protected]
    > etserver.com...
    > > Probably not relevant since I commute in Canberra. but what's the
    > > special deal about SS? My slow wit, I know. The gear combo I use every
    > > day during commuting range between 42X17 and 52X12. Although the
    > > majority of the distance is ridden on 42X13, I still guess an SS would
    > > be too wasteful. Can someone shed some light?
    > >
    > > Cheers,
    > >

    > Where in Canberra do you ride??? I was commuting from Ngunnawal to
    > Campbell for 18mths or so and it was great as pretty well the whole trip
    > was on bike paths or back streets and there was not much in the way of
    > hills (Going up behind the war memorial was probably the hardest part of
    > the trip).
    > I commuted every day and can still remember one -8degrees morning when
    > my water bottle froze and I couldn't have a drink without sticking it
    > inside my jacket for a while to defrost. I never wore any sort of ear or
    > head warmers and it was always the first 5 min or so that I didn't like
    > in the mornings (used to get killer ice cream headaches) but then I
    > would warm up and it would be OK.
    > This week I have just finished building up my singlespeed mtn bike and
    > it has definately worked my legs harder than I normally do on the 27
    > speed. I am still playing around with gear ratios and went from a 36/15
    > to 36/13 but I still need a slightly higher gear. I am now planning to
    > put a larger cog on both front and rear to get a slightly higher gear.
    > If you have a spare bike, give it a crack......I did it on the cheap and
    > knocked the pins out of a couple of old rear clusters to separate all
    > the cogs and the little plastic spacers. I now have a selection of cogs
    > of various sizes and enough spacers to put either side of the one that I
    > am using so that the chain is straight between the front and rear cogs.
    > We have had a bit of rain down here in Melb this week and so the SS has
    > been great as I can just hose it down and then oil it up again in about
    > 2 minutes flat.
    > Ride on.
    > Gags




    Hey Gags,

    Yeah, I used to live in Ngunnawal up to last year. I used to cimmute
    from there to Black Mt labs. Then work moved a little further to ANU.
    Last year I moved to Amaroo. Next week my work will move to Barton. It's
    just getting further and further! No complaint there, though. :)

    Sub-zero temps tease my toes. With liner socks and shoe covers, still
    after 30 minutes of riding, they get really cold. Oh well.

    I take it you're no longer in Canberra, pity.

    Unfortunately, my four bikes are either used or are too new to convert
    to SS yet. maybe some time in the future.

    Cheers, Amir.



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  12. suzyj

    suzyj Guest

    Originally posted by amirm:
    > Although the majority of the distance is ridden on 42X13


    Spending excessive time in little-little or big-big (or one away) is
    bad. A much better gear to spend your day in (with less wear and tear)
    is 52X16, which is around the middle of the cassette and gives almost
    exactly the same gear.

    I strongly advocate adjusting derailleurs to lock out the two biggest
    and two littlest sprockets, to ensure good chainline. ;P

    Regards,

    Suzy



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  13. DaveB

    DaveB Guest

    suzyj wrote:
    > exactly the same gear.
    >
    > I strongly advocate adjusting derailleurs to lock out the two biggest
    > and two littlest sprockets, to ensure good chainline. ;P
    >


    Whew hate to try that with the daughter on her trailer bike. Never seen
    so much use of the 28-28 combination!

    DaveB (with a whole new perspective on what constitutes a "big" hill)
     
  14. amirm

    amirm Guest

    suzyj wrote:
    > Originally posted by amirm:
    > > Although the majority of the distance is ridden on 42X13

    > Spending excessive time in little-little or big-big (or one away) is
    > bad. A much better gear to spend your day in (with less wear and tear)
    > is 52X16, which is around the middle of the cassette and gives almost
    > exactly the same gear.
    > I strongly advocate adjusting derailleurs to lock out the two biggest
    > and two littlest sprockets, to ensure good chainline. ;P
    > Regards,
    > Suzy




    Too right. However, I think your recommendation is more relevant to a
    bike with a 39-52 front and 12-23 cog in back.

    My gear set up is slightly tweaked to give me a better combo in terms of
    gear ratio, convenince of gear change and also as you said avoiding the
    use of last two gears on each end of the range. You see, both 42X13 and
    52X16 will give the ratio that's good for most of my ride. However, more
    frequently than upshifting from that point, I need downshifting in my
    route. With a 11-23 cog, I don't have 16. 15 is slightly heavier and is
    already in the middle, allowing me to downshift only two more gears and
    also creating funnier angles of the chain. With the purposeful upgrade
    from a 12-23 cog in the back, and from a 39 to a 42 chainring in front,
    I have created a more convenient and responsive range of gears in the
    back without the need to use the two smallest gears in the back. The
    large chainring is used in like overdrive conditions, hence less front
    shifting and trimming.

    Cheers, Amir.



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  15. hippy

    hippy Guest

    >Originally posted by amirm Too right. However, I think your
    >recommendation is more >relevant to a bike with a 39-52 front and 12-23
    >cog in back.


    I think Suzy's comment was a little tongue in cheek, given the smiley?

    Some of the.. ah 'guys who favour big gear/top end speed?' use the small
    cogs occasionally. <Puts hand up>. At the same time, I need the lower
    gears for getting up those farkin hills!! Crit racers <puts hand up
    again> will use big ring to small cog during a race. You don't want to
    be stuck in the small ring if a break goes but you still need to spin to
    flush lactic acid, etc.

    hippy



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  16. In article <qtRxc.6432$Y%[email protected]>,
    hippy <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I currently don't have a shower at home (hot water unit blew up)


    Ouch. That does make it hard...

    --
    Shane Stanley
     
  17. suzyj

    suzyj Guest

    Originally posted by amirm:
    > With a 11-23 cog


    I see. I had assumed 12-23 or somesuch. Third from the end is quite
    okay. I'm far to wimpy to spin out a 53/11. Indeed my primary bike at
    the moment runs 53-42 on the front and 13-21 seven speed on the back.

    On my race bike I usually run a 49-39 for a on the front, with 12-23
    nine speed rear, as that put the chain in the middle of the cluster for
    most of a D grade crit. That also means I can get my short cage Chorus
    derailleur to work with a 13-28 cassette, which was a blessing for
    Fitz's and the Alpine.

    Cheers,

    Suzy



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  18. ritcho

    ritcho Guest

    amirm wrote:
    > Too right. However, I think your recommendation is more relevant to a
    > bike with a 39-52 front and 12-23 cog in back.
    > My gear set up is slightly tweaked to give me a better combo in terms of
    > gear ratio, convenince of gear change and also as you said avoiding the
    > use of last two gears on each end of the range. You see, both 42X13 and
    > 52X16 will give the ratio that's good for most of my ride. However, more
    > frequently than upshifting from that point, I need downshifting in my
    > route. With a 11-23 cog, I don't have 16.
    > [snip]
    > Cheers, Amir.




    Ah, sweet 16. I was dying for a 16 spr when I had an 8sp cassette.
    Moving to the 9sp 12-23 was _exactly_ what I needed for the (flattish)
    cycle leg at Mooloolaba. If I ever get the power to outspin the 12, I'll
    consider trying an 11.

    Ritch

    PS. maybe a 44 up front?



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