Velo City: Bicycle Culture and City Life

Single-speed bicycles are bicycles that have only one gear, meaning that the rider cannot change the gear ratio by shifting gears.

They have become popular due to their simplicity, low maintenance, and affordability. Because they lack a complicated gear-shifting mechanism, they are easy to maintain and repair, and they can be a good choice for commuters or casual riders who want a no-frills bike that can get them around town reliably.

While single-speed and fixed-gear bicycles may look similar, there is a key difference between the two: on a fixed-gear bike, the pedals are directly connected to the rear wheel, so that whenever the pedals are moving, the wheel is moving as well. This means that the rider cannot coast or freewheel, and must continue to pedal at all times, even when going downhill.

In contrast, single-speed bikes typically feature a freewheel mechanism that allows the rider to coast without pedaling, just like a multi-speed bicycle. This makes them a more practical choice for many riders, as it means they can relax and rest their legs while going downhill or on flat sections of road.

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Velo City: Bicycle Culture and City Life

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