[CR]Fixed Gear & Track bikes


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From: REClassicBikes@aol.com
Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2004 05:24:45 EST
To: classicrendezvous@bikelist.org
Subject: [CR]Fixed Gear & Track bikes

'Twas me who kicked this one off, on another list.

It is one of my most irk some missed used phrases.

I have now been told in no uncertain terms, by Sheldon, that I am wrong.

However I do not see it that way. Several things suggest otherwise to me.

We (English speakers) call a freewheel a freeWHEEL, because it not a fixed WHEEL.

If we were trying to distinguish a freewheel from something described as a fixed GEAR, a freewheel would be know as a Free GEAR. It is not.

So despite Sheldon's posting, containing several sophistries, I believe the correct term to be Fixed wheel.

I will freely accede that the term "fixed gear" is widely missed used and widely misunderstood. This is as much in print as in everyday verbal use.

I once read a cycling manual that advised me to "sleep on my back, with the window open and wear goggles" if I wanted to be a racing cyclist. Print is not proof.

The term "freewheel" is not really applicable to direct drive (ordinary) bicycles, because in their heyday, before the common up take of the non direct drive (safety) bicycling, freewheels were not generally used and there was no need to differentiate between fixed and free wheels.

A Sturmey Archer ASC, is a three speed hub, providing a fixed wheel in each gear. It is not a fixed gear.

This may be a little off the wall, but surely a track bike is one that is used on the track. Irrespective of how it is constructed.

Most tracks and indeed the UCI have rules requiring certain conditions (no brakes, no engine!). Incidentally this usually includes the rule: No freewheel. (as opposed to no free gear)

Regards Martin Coopland, Scotland, http://www.BatesBicycles.com