It seems everywhere I look these days I see these fantastically colored bikes that are not quite a mountain bike or a street bike or a cruiser bike, but are some kind of beautiful hybrid. I’m talking about a type of bike that has exploded in popularity and has so many custom color options. I’m talking about Fixie bikes.
What is a Fixie?
Fixie is short for fixed gear. It means that the cog (that gear on the rear wheel that the chain goes around) doesn’t have a ball bearing system in it that allows the wheel to spin independently. The rear wheel is directly tied to the motion of the pedals. If you pedal forward on a fixed gear bike, the bike moves forward. If you pedal backwards, the bike pedals backwards. You might ask, “why would I want to do something like that?”
Simple and Maneuverable
Riding a Fixie has grown in popularity because of its fundamental simplicity. It would be tough to build a bike with fewer parts and fewer parts means…lighter! Fixed gear bikes are significantly lighter than 9 speed all-terrain bikes, etc. It’s not all for show, either. Riding fixed allows you dramatically improved maneuverability. Riding fixed, in many people’s eyes, is the most fun part of their day. You feel attached to the bike. Since your pedals are directly tied to the movement of the wheels, you’re much more a part of the bicycle than you are on a single speed cruiser or something of the like.
Efficient and Easy to Use
Another advantage of riding a fixed gear bike besides the increased maneuverability and lightness is its efficiency. Fixed gear drive trains are more mechanically efficient than any other bike, with the most direct power transfer from rider to the wheels. Efficiency means energy and highly efficient means a Pure Fix bike requires less energy from you, the rider.
If this all sounds great, but you still want to ease into riding in “fixed gear” mode, don’t worry. Pure Fix Fixie bikes feature a flip-flop hub with both a fixed and a second cog with a freewheel bearing system. Bikes ship with the freewheel cog engaged, so you are ready to coast.
It’s a fixie, simple and fun, there’s only a few components, well made, and the bike has a style and feel to compliment the kind of hipster that gets fixed gear biking. It’s a West Coast style that is, more unique than a conventional single speed, no wonder boys and girls of all ages are enjoying this new craze in biking.
As I test rode these bikes, I absolutely loved them. It’s my first time on a fixie, and the my only gripe with the bikes I tried is that I’m not a fan of straight handlebars, but that’s an easy fix, as they have so many options to customize your fixie bike. I now have a new appreciation for these type of bikes.