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Lube is love,
I first started riding fixed bikes in the late 70's. My ride was a Zeus Professional, french blue, geared too high for the road with no front brake. I didn't care, I just wanted to ride the street with a fixed bike. One day I topped StoneWay heading North and got a good spin going on the downside to Greenlake. Three blocks from the major intersection at 50th and Greenlake Way, the light turned green, it was all mine. I pounced and picked up the pace to blast at full speed through, I was moving like a bat out of hell. Fate had something else in mind.
Just before I reached the last block, the light turned yellow and flipped red, taunting me to bite it. I pushed back on the pedals, controlling the fine line between blowing the rubber off my 250 gram sew-up and getting bucked over the bars. A split second decision I turned right onto a side street and skimmed the parked cars, fighting to stay up and not go down, missing mirrors and chrome on the way.
I made it. No skin on the pavement, only a sore butt muscle from straining to make a slow impact, which never happened.
Determined to get smart about road riding a fixie, I talked to a track/roadie friend named Jim. He raced here and in Europe. I told him what happened and his first comment was "It looks like you used one of your nine lives", and "It's not your time to go yet". "Gear down and get a front brake", Jim said. "You need to spin more to have control, and you get stronger by doing more revs." I sold the Zeus and bought a Sekai 5000, a local brand that had some custom track frames made in Japan. It had a hole in the fork for a brake and I geared way down to a 45/18. Campy drivetrain of course. I later switched the bars to a Cinelli LA84 T.T. bar with a SR lever and a reversed road cable. That's all we could do in those days, no levers yet to screw into an aero bar.
Today there are choices we never had 30 years ago. Come by the shop and we can help you get set up for a nice ride.
— Charles Hadrann
Owner, Wright Brothers Cycle Works
"The main reason I like fixed gears is their simplicity. You don't have to deal with all that marketing garbage that Shimano and Campagnolo jams down the consumers throat. Did they ever ask us if we needed 20 or 30 gears? The great beauty of bicycles still has room for the fixed gear, and I hope they stay with us for awhile."
|© 2006 Wright Brothers Cycle Works. Photos courtesy of Kiessling Photography. Site by Boomslang Design.|