29" vs Fixed Gear

Hey all!

I’ve recently gotten into bicycles (don’t shoot!) because all of my unicycle friends have moved away. A few of the people I ride with have been toying with the idea of riding fixies. (Fixed gear- It’s kind of like the bikes you rode as children, no gears, back pedal stop, etc etc). My question is, has anyone or does anyone think (please be specific which) that a 29" unicycle would be able to keep up with a fixed gear bicycle since both seem to be powered simply by pedals and no gear ratios.

I think you would not be able to keep up. Your Uni is geared 1-1 and even fixed bicycles are higher, more like 1-1.5. This alone would make it tough to ride together.

I used to have a fixie, and, I’ve got a 29-er uni, though I mainly ride a 26" these days.

I think in general, a 29-er can ride with any bicycle, as long as the cyclists are up for it and willing to not go as fast on the bikes as they probably would when riding alone or just with other bikes.

Thing about fixies is that they’re usually geared pretty high, so I’m not that sure that fixies will be better riding with unis than a geared bike would be. For riding slower it’s probably quite useful to be able to drop to a lower gear.

I’d suggest you give it a go and then post the outcome on this thread.

If you’re riding somewhere reasonably flat, then it’d be worthwhile going for a shorter crank- my KH29 has got the dual-hole cranks, 150 and 125mm and, for riding with bikes on the flat, I’d have gone for the 125 setting.

Thanks for replies.

What if I asked the same question but said 36" instead of 29"?

Or, for the sake of the thread and gathering information…

What about one of the fancy geared hubs on either size?

I currently only own a KH20 (for sale section) and thus can’t actually test it out and report back…yet.

On road or off road?

On road you probably need a bigger wheel, like a 36", and even then they can gear up and run away from you; of course you spend another $1700 on a geared hub and maybe keep up…

Off road, well if it gets techical enough you will destroy them on a 29", but off road on a fixie is sketchy stuff, so I bet you’re talking about road.

What you really need to do is convince your biking buddies that bikes are lame, then you introduce hem to big wheeled unicycles and it’s a win-win :smiley:

Not Unless They’re REALLY Slow

I ride a fixed gear and a 29er. (And 24, 26 and 36.) I used to show up at the local club rides on the fixed gear and stay among the leaders, easily averaging 18-20 mph. I’d have been bored silly riding slow enough for a 29er or even 36er to keep up with me, but one could do it. My average on a 36er is around 12 mph.


Fixed gears ARE geared, and can in fact be geared quite high - it’s just that you only have one. My fixed gear was 48x15.

There is no way I would be comfortable riding my fixie on a uni ride. Before I got the S3X hub I kept pace on club rides, but got scared on the descents at close to 30mph, and 130 rpm’s (46x18). With the three gear options of that hub I comfortably climb, and descend on the fixie.

I think a skilled rider with a GUni could do it.

If you find the fixies playing bike polo, then they are geared quite low. And then if you have bigger wheel than the others (36 for example) it may work.
The only advantage of riding with fixie compared to single-speed bike is that fixies miss freewheel as we do, so both must spin on a way down :wink:

Not going to happen is the general consensus. Haha.

Thanks for the information!

Remember, no matter how few gears a bike has, they still have one major advantage over any unicycle (geared or fixed) - they get to coast as fast as gravity will take them on downhills.

Even Kris Holm, possibly the best Muni rider on the planet, didn’t get a podium finish with a geared 26 when he raced against bikes in a head to head race. He did manage 4th place I think, which is still unhuman in my book, though.

Unless it’s a fixed gear bike of course, which can’t coast on downhills :slight_smile:

@madfurai: single speed and fixed is different. Fixed is single speed without coasting.

Seems like backwards engineering to me, but okay. There are people that pay money for this? lol

You can take your feet off the pedals.

I know. It’s not coasting though, it’s ‘taking your feet off the pedals’ :slight_smile: