Wednesday, February 25, 2009

One Thing Leads to Another

Apparently "the big topic in BMX" is fixed-gear freestyle. Had no idea. That being the case, I suppose I should weigh in:

It's fucking stupid.

Call me closed-minded, call me old-fashioned, call me a Fascist. I don't care. But first check out the ad that accompanies that Volume post:

Notice anything? That's right, the bike broke. And sure, anyone can break a chain. But if you're doing stuff like that on a regular basis on a 700c wheeled bike, parts are going to break all the time. Wheels will bend, chainstays will die, forks will—I don't want to even think what will happen to forks.

I guess what I don't understand is taking a bike obviously intended for one thing and using it for something it's in no way intended for. I know, I know, I can hear the responses already: "But that's how BMX and mountain biking started!!!!" Sure, fine. Absolutely correct.


At this point, in 2009, there are plenty of bikes out there designed expressly for trick riding. You have your regular BMX bikes, obviously, as well as cruisers and mountain bikes. All shapes and sizes. Fixed-gears are built to go fast in a circle. Fixed-gear freestyle—to me, obviously—is just a stubborn case of "I'll show YOU what I can or can't do!" Which is all well and good, but there's such a thing as going too far. Doing "freestyle" on a fixed is like drag racing in a Prius or trimming your toenails with a paring knife or climbing Everest in flip-flops and a Speedo. Or, for that matter, entering the Tour de France on a GT Fueler. Can you do it? Sure, maybe. But why make things complicated when there are already tools designed specifically for that purpose?

Honestly, I'm just amazed that no one's snapped the stock fork off his or her [SPECIFIC PRODUCT NAME REDACTED] trying something stupid, gotten badly hurt, and tried to sue the shit out of the company. I'm sure that'll work out well.

By the way, I typed this whole post on a cell phone with no keyboard just because I could.*


ATTENTION ALL WOULD-BE BIKE CHECKERS: No one cares about your setup. You know why? Either you're riding the same shit as everyone else ("A big front tire? NO WAY!") or you're just running what your sponsor sends you. ("This new Primo fork is the best fork I've ever run in my LIFE. Well, until the next one comes out.") We don't care that you cut your bars and your seatpost, or that you've been running the same seatpost clamp since 1937. Saying "I don't know, the usual one" for what kind of chain you run does not make you look cool (do you have a mechanic who handles that stuff, or did you just never learn to read?). The fact that you can match colors without the use of a Pantone chart does not make you a designer. Listing the weight of your bike to the nearest hundreth of an ounce means you're insane and probably weigh your bowel movements.

All that said, this is awesome, and I can't imagine how it got on ESPN. Good job, Tunney.


*Total lie.


brien said...

the worst!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous would NEVER be caught doing tricks on a fixie. The only guys doing that gay shit are named Metrosexual-Nate.

brien said...

ESPN already pulled the burns video. pussies.

bill said...

QUESTIONs: Do you have to wear girl-jeans to ride a fixed gear bike? What about tiny little jackets? Or slip on shoes? Are these part of a uniform? And if there is a dress-code can someone please post the link to it? I am interested. It reminds me of when "emo-scenesters" first started and there was that site that detailed what to wear.

And everyone is always talking about "the simplicity" of a fixed gear bike.... when was the last time a road bike had a catastrophic derailer blow-out? My road bike is pretty much maintenance free as a multi-speed bicycle, and I actually like being able to change gears. Isn't that an advantage while navigating city streets and hills? AND, Would I ever in a million years think to grind my road bike down a ledge? NEVER. So why is freestyle on a fixed gear even a plausible idea?

RJ said...

bill...I was thinking the "Your sister's pants" thing was reserved for BMX guys, but you have a valid point. Hipsters are so...hip.

Anonymous said...

Why was riding a beach cruiser down long, steep mountain roads a plausible idea? Why was jumping bikes on dirt mounds that were designed to look like choppers and muscle cars plausible?

Mexican John said...

the worst thing about bike checks are the pointless obvious questions:

"which parts do you break the most?"

"I guess the tires and grips."

"which parts are you paranoid about breaking?"

"the forks".

Anonymous said...

RS, let's pigeonhole and stereotype a whole scene. All old men that ride 29ers are dorks.

Anonymous said...

Not that I approve of these fucking 'hipsters'doing tricks but there was an old black and white video on Dig a few years back of a bloke doing flatland on a fixed bike.

This is the only fixed video worth watching though.

And it's a girl, and it's been about for ages. That says it all really.

Anonymous said...

to much pedaling around those bowls for my taste. makes it look like a clown circus act from the 40's. I think dudes right in saying it's just a simple case of "look what i can do on this set up."

And to the anonymous poster who talks about bombing down hills on beach cruises, it's because that's what was available at that time, it was the best tool for the job at that point. this fixie trixter **it is bull**it.

but in saying all this, to each is there own, ride what you want, it's your life.

Russ said...

Kids jumped muscle bikes and backcountry kooks scorched fire roads on balloon-tire cruisers because there were no bikes made for those specific purposes. Through refinement, BMX and mountain bikes were born. That was innovation out of necessity.

Fixed-gear freestyle is not that.

And that Burns video seriously got pulled? Weak. Hopefully it gets re-posted somewhere else.

steve said...

along with circus acts in the 40's on fixies...

doesn't bmx fall in line dehinds its extreme decendents of...surfing and circus riders in the 40's?... it all leads to flatland and hang-ten's on kids bikes...

Bill S said...

Fixie guys doing their wheelies & trackstands is one thing .Fine. Whatever floats your boat.
It's when they start doing street & park stuff on them (if only there was a bike built for such things!) that it starts looking really awkward and ungainly.
Reminds me of watching a baby giraffe learning to walk.

RJ said...

Russ, exactly. It Was the nascent stages of evolution...freestyle on a fixie is the answer to a question that no one asked...a bit like me on the 1/2 pipe on my 26" USB.

Anonymous said...

I only like pro bike checks if they mention their height, at least to get any idea of top tube length and height.

Fixed Gear Freestyle at the banks is the worst. Hipster faggots.

bill said...

Anonymous 3:41 PM:

All of your examples are examples of pioneering on equipment before their time. Since then bikes have been re-designed according to specific needs and uses.

Would you try and race motocross on a YZF-R1? That would be pioneering, right?

Darren H. said...

Never mind all of this. BMX getting involved in fixed gear bikes reminds me so much of the F1 thing from 20 years ago it's ridiculous.

A major recession hits an already oversaturated industry, so manufacturers have to find new ways to generate income. How? By getting involved in a different market! In 1987, this was (the then new and very novel) mountain bikes and the weird hybrid F1s, (like this offering by Hutch - this one also gets credit for sharing a name with an STD... As far as I can tell, no one ever bought or even figured out what F1s were supposed to do.

It's like the invented a bike and expected a sport to evolve around it. I think pro racers used to race them in circles in parking lots or something.....

Anyway, the fixed gear trend is a few years old, which makes it about 14:58 on the trend clock. Unfortunately for the BMX set, we showed up late to this party. I predict by next year, well heeled skinny urban transplant hipsters will be selling their Pistas and Steamrollers for a fraction on what they paid for them, so they can buy the next great trend. What's it going to be? We've already seen rollerblades, Razor scooters on the same sort of folks.....I'm guessing the next big urban transport trend will be some kind of battery powered scooter....

Of course I'm not talking at all about REAL track bike racers, which is a totally different thing altogether. 99% of fixed gear bikes won't ever see a velodrome, and 99% of fixed gear riders would probably be too scared to even ride on one. Most are too busy talking about the "soul" and "feel" of riding a fixed gear, as if it's some kind of spiritual exercise pedaling down the street to the drugstore while praying to God that your girlfriend isn't pregnant.

Anonymous said...

Each update gets more and more lame.

Stick to bmx parts, not drama.

Anonymous said...

Were probably gonna end up with some weird beefed up fixed gear bikes, (or road bikes or w/e they're called)...

Drew K said...

I dont see the big deal with talking shit on fixies. I bet we look almost as, if not just as weird, riding around on little kids bikes doing tricks. This reminds me of when Prop 8 passed in Cali mostly due to a larger number of blacks voting. BMXers being the black people that voted for it and fixie riders being the gays(haha). Now that were not as obscure it dosent mean we should hate(discriminate)on those less accepted than us. Simply put: were a minority discriminating on a smaller minority. Hopefully that makes some sense.

Anonymous said...

Fixie freestyle is completely waqq.

That said, if someone boosted a hip or aired out of a quarter on a fixie, I'd be fairly impressed.

nate said...

"The only guys doing that gay shit are named Metrosexual-Nate."

Whatever, dude! I only wish that I was remotely metrosexual. I don't even own a comb (no lie), much less hair product or nice clothes.

Oh yeah, I don't own a fixed gear bike either.

Coasting is awesome.

bill said...

"Coasting is awesome."

best response yet!

Beerman said...

"This reminds me of when Prop 8 passed in Cali mostly due to a larger number of blacks voting."

Prop 8 passed in Cali because the whole deal was confusing as fuck; a yes on Prop 8 meant what a no should have been.

Anonymous said...

I need video verification to even play with the idea that the fixed pedal grind is real and not posed

wade said...

The bike check is the lowest form of editorial content.
Indeed, can one even refer to a shopping list / recipe as editorial content? Is there a form of editorial that is more complicit with the desires of advertisers?
Ride (US) re-introduced the bike check a while back, focusing on one of Taj's bikes and pledged to focus on bikes that had something interesting going on. That pledge has not been fulfilled.

Anonymous said...

drew k..

how is bmx not obscure? fixed gears are way more popular than bmx. sad but true.

Darren H said...


you're right, I remember that bike check. I think Taj mentioning in that bike check that he liked light bikes might've set off the whole litewait trend.

I like seeing bike checks where someone has something custom or unusual or interesting going on (refer to Gouin, Chase, or Jones, Kevin), but 99% of them you see these days are exactly the same. High bars, no pegs, no brakes, slammed seat, blah blah blah.

Anonymous said...

Fixed-gears are built to go fast in a circle.

More specifically, to sustain speed, in the absence of corners.

Which is why they're so popular among stop-and-go grid commuters.

Who are idiots.

Anonymous said...

I remember a time when BMX riders in general weren't close-minded dickfaces. Sadly, it seems that time has passed.

It shouldn't matter what kind of bike you ride and what sort of things you get up to on it. As long as you're riding, enjoy it, own it, have fun with it.

Russ complains that many rider's seats are so low that they can't sit down and pedal around, making the owner's of these bikes more or less dependent on their cars to take their bikes longer than a couple of miles from their starting point.

Fixed Gear dudes can ride across town and session and then ride home.

BMX as a sport is so dominated by the opinions of children, so it's surprising when one of the old dudes continues to spread the ignorance.

If you don't like it, then don't do it. The fixed gear kids are doing their own thing, and they're doing it on bikes. The more kids that ride bikes, the stronger the industry as a whole is. The stronger the industry, the greater the amount of innovation.

The amount of hatred and ugliness that BMX blogs have recently dumped on the Fixed Freestylers is totally out of porportion both to the number of people involved in fixed freestyle as well as the danger that FF poses to BMX. Are FF kids going to destroy ledges with their pegs? Are you afraid that people are giving up BMX to ride Fixies full time?

Live and let live. Ride YOUR bike, and even better, ride lots kinds of bikes. Work on being a little more inclusive to everyone on two wheels, and not just the ones with a low pivital seat, a 4.8 pound FitEd frame, plastic pedals, Fly 2.3 tyres, and whatever else Dakota and Ed are riding this week.

Team Dilly said...

Meanwhile, you're posting chastising anonymous messages on the internet and trying to give people advice on how to live their lives like you know what the fuck you're talking about. Take your own advice.

wade said...

word verification:

Anonymous said...

*waits for dig to publish FGF jihad article*

Russ said...

More like fixed gear guys can ride across town, "session," then throw their destroyed bikes on the L to get home. Oh well, I guess Velocity and Profile are doing well off it.

Maybe I should start riding street on a time trial bike. You know, to "innovate."

Chris Duncan Clothing said...

Dear Writer of SPRFLS

I use to think that you were a winey
douche. After this article I now think that you are totally a sound and quality individual.
When can we meet?
I wanna buy you a beer.
I'll have a non alc st paulie girl
I know I know.

nigger said...

fixies are ugly. the people who ride them are usually hipster dickheads

Bone said...

Ride UK, 26 bike checks in the latest issue. Fixie article a few months ago, you think they may have run out of things to say?

Plagiarist said...

What's with all the fucking hate?

I have two fixed wheel bikes, one used for going fast and getting me to work and yes it is a ridiculously trendy lo-pro and a Steamroller, built solidly with BMX and mountain bike parts which I use for Bike polo.

Before anyone jumps on this and rips me to pieces I personally do not like FGF. I also ride mountain bikes and have been BM
Xing for 10+ years and couldn't imagine why I'd personally want to use a fixed wheel to imitate my BMXing at a very poor asnd more awkward looking level.

But that's the whole point. It's my choice for me to not ride FGF, we shouldn't be dictating to other people what they can do with their own choice of bike.

Do any of you remember the Mountain Bike / BMX Dirtjumping hatred?

It's just the same old story just looking at a different aspect of BMX.

I've seen enough reply's here containing "you are not the width of your bars" and "Who give's a shit what anyone else rides" comments to believe that some of you understand freedom of choice but Jeebus are some of you miserable bastards.

Next thing you'll be mocking eacvh other because some of you wear skinny jeans and all the most up to date parts whilst some others are riding in Baggy Jeans and running last years colourways...

BMX used to represent an open mindedness that was intoxicating, not it's just toxic.

Anonymous said...

Just the ignorant kind of shit I would expect from the come up. Oh wait ... that was last week.

andreas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Plagiarist said...

I really need to learn to type.

Anonymous said...

Here's what these guys are all about -

I'm all about people having fun on bikes*. Fine by me. But if you put out 98043702938740 youtube videos of yourself doing those Send Me an Angel skidder things and bailed tire taps, expect some criticism.

*except for bike polo. That pretentious horseshit can fuck right off.

Plagiarist said...

Anonymous is hating (on bikepolo)

Anonymous said...

i was riding my fixed around and stopped at this show some friends were at and some guy asked what tricks i could do. i told him i had a bmx for that and he looked a little bummed.

word verification: unmed

Russ said...

Hey, if people want to try wallrides and barspinz on fixed gears, I'm not looking to stop them. If they want to pretend a skatepark (or the Banks) is a velodrome and they're Major Taylor, fine, go ahead.

I just think it's fucking stupid.

I'd write more, but I'm off to play basketball in a three-piece suit and wingtips. I'm such a rebel.

aids blood said...

"Anyway, the fixed gear trend is a few years old, which makes it about 14:58 on the trend clock."

so true. i cant wait for the next two minutes to pass so i can get on a bmx website and not have to hear everybody bitching about how gay fixed gear riding is.

although im not into the fixie freestyle stuff myself, i def respect it. freestyle means you can do whatever you want. fixie freestyle means you can do whatever you want on your fixie.

bmx is way cooler than freestyle mtb, fixed, xmx, snowmobile cross, or any other type of vehicle that you can backflip. everyone is going to bite our shit because we do it the best. that is a fact.

imitation is one of the best forms of flattery. isnt that how that saying goes?

mat smith said...

Coasting is awesome.
there is already big bikes out there for tricks. even single speed big trick bikes.

the flatland circle shit seems fine.

Doing FGF is like blowing your nose with construction paper..wouldnt you want to use something made for it?

haha verification:ingther

Anonymous said...

I'm personally boycotting any BMX company that contributes to this crap. Yes FBM, Yes Volume...that means you!!!!!

mat smith said...

aidsblood raises a good point

Anonymous said...

I've been all over this "INNOVATION" thing lately. It's been a lot of fun!!! Here are some things I have been doing:

1) Last week I went surfing using a snowboard. That didnt go as planned since a snowboard isnt very buoyant.

2) I recently went 4x4 off-roading in a Mazda 3! That was awesome, until I got stuck 50 yards down the trail and sheared off 2 engine mounts. boo.

3) I decided to go to the "skate" park wearing ICE SKATES!! FYI, Ice skates don't slide on concrete. So why name it a skate park? geez. idiots.

Today I am going to the local MX track with my neighbors moped. I think it will hold up. right?

robbosstache said...

there's a velodrome right next to major taylor skatepark in indy. cosmic foreshadowing?

russ has a knack for titles...

Skid Mark PDX said...

I like fixed oriented tricks like long skids and backwards circles, but the "street BMX" stuff is kinda stupid. This is coming from someone with a really nice track bike and a long background in BMX. I have appreciation for both, including riding a track bike on the street. They handle quick in traffic and you can get places fast with very little effort. I've also raced a little at the velodrome, but I am horribly slow, just like I was on the BMX track.

People should do what they want with their own damn bike, whatever kind of bike it is. Someone doing fixie tricks today might decide they like that aspect of riding and get a BMX, and save the fixed gear for commuting, bar-hopping, and alleycats.

Skid Mark PDX said...

Major Taylor SKATEPARK? That's your foreshadowing...

Russ said...

Ya, srsly.

theagonizingpainofshittingglass. said...

Fuck it. If they wanna fall and break their asses while worrying about being different and cool, that's them. Natural selection.

the sound of one hand clapping. said...


t. (the crusher of dreams) f.a. said...

wow...what passion!

wade said...

You know, all you bmxers with track bikes for commuting could just raise your BMX's seat. Saves having to keep an extra bike. Set your BMX for commuting, and then adapt to that setup for freestyle.

Skid Mark PDX said...

Yeah Wade, 55 gear inches will get me across town in a heartbeat. I don't think I could put a fender on a BMX, I have a hard enough time uglifying a track bike with one.

Chris Duncan Clothing said...

Respect to Mike but their is another initiative besides the need to wear helmets in BMX.
GAY Rights
Chris Duncan Clothing is accepting applications from all Homosexual Bmxers.
The hatemongers must leave the sport.
CDC is adopting the initiative to end the gay bmx discrimination.
Submit apps by emailing them to:
Join us to end the Discrimination.

Plagiarist said...

"You know, all you bmxers with track bikes for commuting could just raise your BMX's seat. Saves having to keep an extra bike. Set your BMX for commuting, and then adapt to that setup for freestyle."

Great, and how about if the commute is upwards of 10 miles each way?

I personally have no problem owning different bikes for different things. It doesn't make me any less of a BMXer just because I ride other bikes too.

Russ said...

Commuting on a BMX bike makes about as much sense as doing a sprocket grind on a track bike.

bman said...

...commuting on a bmx?

do it all the time.

admittedly theres no hench hills and its only like 15-20 mins each way.

shit, in some cases in london,abmx is actually THE tool for the job.

and in summer time i get right sweaty back where my back pack is.

but just like they play two matches of football one away and one home for each team, fixed gears in the arena of freestyle does worse than bmx does in the arena of commuting.

that being said, and as much as i think fgf is not worth much more than playing around in a big parking lot on a nice summers evening whilst smoking pot with \mates, id still rather be on my bmx.

though i would fancy a fixie or single speed affair. sometimes. commuting brakeless in the rain, or on a hot as hell summer day on a bmx is a motherfucker.

Anonymous said...

Fuck bicycle freestyle in all its forms

i stunt a segway, because of the "connection"

i wont have to eat so much and in turn im saving the earth

because i dont have to pedal...

MWM said...

the EXPN link don't work

ted moult said...

BMX = humans or great white sharks
FGF = duck billed platypus

youaintno said...

Dear "Plagiarist,"

Mountain bikers that ride dirt jumps are still lame faggots. They ride the jumps in the rain and rut them out, case the fuck out of everything and turn any double they're too scared to jump into a table top.

Fuck them. And fuck FGF, too.

apocalypse dude said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
apocalypse dude said...

"track stands" and "skid stops" are gonna be in the next x-games.
anyway, cant beleive this hasnt been posted..

^cut and paste^