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Michael Lynn 10-16-2008 08:01 AM

Budget Fixed gear/Single-Speed Build?
I'm interested in getting a single-speed bike, but I'd like to stay under $100 if possible.

Any suggestions on how I can build an inexpensive Single-Speed?

Thank you,

Mike ODonnell 10-16-2008 10:45 AM

Do what I did....break your derailer off (which was not intentional) and then take it to the bike shop where they find a small rear spoke-gear in the back and fix it up for $ for me.

Daniel Olmstead 10-16-2008 10:55 AM

Here is the bible of singlespeed conversion information, it has everything you need to know:

The next step is acquiring a cheap bike to convert. Craigslist is probably your best bet here. Or you could skip the DIY aspect and just buy a SS off Craigslist, but I don't know if you can do it for under $100.

Garrett Smith 10-16-2008 12:05 PM

I think I pulled one off for ~$300, the old Cannondale road bike was $100 used, then the rest was parts and bike-shop labor.

A fixie can last forever with little maintenance, so don't be afraid to invest in decent stuff early-on.

Craig Brown 10-16-2008 01:07 PM

I landed a SS 82 Trek off craigslist for $150. Of course I added $200 for vastly improved brakes, Nitto Noodle + stem, and much nicer pedals- but it was functional when I got it.

Stephen Brown 10-20-2008 10:57 AM

find an old steel frame with horizontal dropouts and go to sheldon brown's site.

pawn shops, craiglist or garage sales are great if you are of average height.

did I say steel? yes, get steel. aluminum is harsh and has a short life-span if ridden hard.

when you find a frame, post it up.

I commute on an early 80's motobecane mirage geared at 52-18.

Craig Brown 10-20-2008 11:37 AM


Where do you live with that gearing? My 82 Trek is running 42/16 and even that is a killer on some of Seattle's hills.


Stephen Brown 10-20-2008 01:50 PM

I'm in Dallas so I can't claim too much cred.

I probably don't have more than a couple of hundred feet of elevation change between my office and work over 15 miles. The big gear is great for long flat stretches. That said, I'm a masher, even on my geared mtb.

The biggest challenges here aren't the hills, but the general disdain for cyclists among drivers and the city gov.

Craig Brown 10-20-2008 03:12 PM

That makes sense! Things are pretty good for cyclists (I'd say great, but I spend enough time in Portland to know what great looks like!), though you do get the usual issues- mainly that people forget how to drive when it rains. Every time it rains. And it rains from now until May!


Frank Needham 10-20-2008 05:45 PM

Here's an enormous thread on this subject a while back:
I ended getting a nice one from craigslist for $80.

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