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OPINION

Joining the single speed "Revolution"

After the tough conditions this winter and having spent as much time cleaning my bike after rides as pedalling it, the lower maintenance option of a single speed was looking more and more appealing to me.

So after consulting with Mr Farrelly of this very website and spending more time than was healthy on Google I decided to take the plunge and make a purchase.

After considering one or two models, the "Revolution Track 10" from Edinburgh Bicycle Co-Operative was chosen.

The box was delivered whilst I was in Spain so armed with my tools and a dry sunny Sunday I took to upacking my new machine. Thankfully, Edinburgh had thought of everything. The bike comes with a list of all the checks that had been made and tools for the rest of the assembly.

You can of course decide which way to have the 'flip flop' hub for fixed or freewheel, mine came in freewheel.

All I needed to do was sort out the saddle height, straighten the bars and fit my Look Keos and I was off. The bike also came with a backpack, bottle and plenty of reading matter. 

Single speeding is completely different to how I imagined and to 'normal' cycling.

Taking the gear change option out of the equation makes life simpler and after a few rides I am now using this opportunity to plan my cornering to keep speed up and keep the 48x16 turning.

If I am honest it might be overgeared for some of the shorter steeper climbs over in Northamptonshire, but I am going to tough it out for now as it is so much fun and everyone is telling me how much stronger a climber I am going to get as a result of training on it.

I got out 12 miles across the fen Friday evening before turning for home and finding the stiff wind meant I worked harder than on my other bike. I would have used the gears to manage my effort home. On a single speed you ride what you've got and if that means 'honking' into the wind on a 3 mile stretch of flat road, so be it.

I am a convert.

James has been blogging for road.cc for 5 years and racing bicycles (averagely) for 20 years. 

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