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  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Jul 2012

    Newb to fixed. Road frame or track frame?

    Plan to build one with a flip-flop. I have a road bike and have thought of converting it but I use it to commute 22 miles to work and do some nasty weather training rides when I can't mtb.

    Would track frame geo be better for backpedal stops and high bb to avoid pedal strike? Or does it not make a difference?

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: David Loving's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    I've had good luck with old frames converted. Unless you go single speed where you can control the pedal strike issue in turns, you can go with about a 5mm decrease in crank arm length. I use 170mm road and ss, but 165mm on my fixed gear bike. You'll also need appropriate dropouts in the back. My older frames sport semi-horizontal rear dropouts. True track frames have horizontal fork ends. If your frame has regular road dropouts you can use that if you can get proper chain length - some slack. Some can get that with a half-length in the chain. Otherwise you can look into a white industries ENO rear hub or an eccentric bottom bracket for the correct adjustments. So, I don't think it makes any difference - as usual I'd also consult St. Sheldon for his advice.

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  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: axlenut's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    I run 175 cranks on my Wabi Classic and have only had one peddle strike and that was my fault as the trail had a hump in it and I did not take the correct line. I would think comfort, road handling and water bottle mounts would be more important then the BB hight.

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: JCavilia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Asssuming you can find a road frame with horizontal dropouts, the only arguable advantage of a track frame is the higher bb, and the importance of that is greatly overrated. You quickly learn to pedal more upright through corners. It's no big deal.

    On the other hand, track geometry can be a disadvantage on the road, for comfort and handling.

    So, road frame. If you can't find a frame with horizontal dropouts, the advent of the half-link has made it much easier to find a magic gear that provides acceptable chain tension. The ENO hub is great, but expensive.

  5. #5
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: DocRogers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Newb to fixed. Road frame or track frame?

    Road frame. Grab an older frame with semi-horizontal dropouts and build it up. It will be drilled for brakes, it will be more comfortable, and it will handle better on the road.

  6. #6
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Years ago when the earth was still flat I use to race a Tesch and a Paramount. The Tesch was built to track geo with brakes and gearing. Tesch built it this way because he was a track racer and thought the design was best for crits and short road races. it was a great crit bike but for long rides the Paramount was more comfortable. The difference in the geo was noticeable especially on long rides with rough roads. Go with a traditional road frame.
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  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    i've had a conversion, loved a track-end bike with roadish geometry, & am presently riding an actual old-school steel track frame as my fg road bike. since i built it up, have done a couple metrics & 1 imperial on it with no problems whatsoever.

    imho, the single downside to my track frame is that the fork is not drilled for a brake & it has no bottle bosses so when i ride it in full roadie mode i have to clamp all that crap on. but when it is stripped down for riding around the neighborhood, going on slower social media-type rides, or hanging with the is just so dam purdy.

    Quote Originally Posted by kikoraa View Post
    ...I have a road bike and have thought of converting it but I use it to commute 22 miles to work and do some nasty weather training rides when I can't mtb...
    the previous helpful posters seem to have missed the fact that you already have a road bike. unless you adhere to the n+1 model of bike ownership & want multiple bikes, why would you want another road frame? if you aren't up for for full-on track geo there are quite a few road oriented "track" frames/bikes available nowadays.

    have fun & good luck...

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