Fixed Gear vs Geared Folding Bikes - What are the Differences?
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Fixed Gear vs Geared Folding Bikes - What are the Differences?

Fixed Gear vs Geared Folding Bikes – What are the Differences?

The fixed-gear single-speed foldable bikes continues to achieve reputation as one of the best pedal bikes. Very first popularized by bike messengers, fixed gear bike, fixed wheel bike, single-speed or perhaps fixie bikes, with time has evolved as the cult subsequent in many places of the globe. There are various factors that explain why fixed bikes have become a winner among bicycling aficionados.

Nevertheless some people are mesmerized using the simplicity of the bikes; in addition fixed bikes are incredibly light in weight. Fixed gear bikes likewise usually appear in less costly costs compared to other forms associated with bikes and are also better to maintain with fewer parts when compared with other bicycle counterparts.

The particular body structure of a fixed bike consists of the sprocket being placed on its hub producing freewheeling tough. This kind of arrangement helps the actual pedals proceed continuously when the bicycle is within motions, following path with the steering wheel. A fixed gear bicycle can easily and securely function together with or without brakes given that preventing the motions with the pedal will immediately stop the bike, even though there are some places where it is illegal to have bicycles not equipped with brakes.


Now let’s compare some of the features of fixed gear with geared bikes.

Feel: The fact that you can’t coast keeps your legs moving, in a way taking the place of the gears. And because you have to keep pedaling you become more in tune with your speed especially when navigating hills. An apt comparison between the feel of a fixed and a geared bike is much like that of manual and automatic cars.

Better Exercise: We all know that cycling is one of simple ways to exercise. You can take advantage of a bicycle to travel from work to home and from home to work. If you ride a bike on a daily basis, you’ll be able to reach and maintain a healthy weight successfully. It’s pretty clear that fixed gear folding bikes (also known as single speed folding bikes) would be a better option if you need a bike for exercising. It goes without saying that fixed gear folding bikes provide a better workout in comparison with geared folding bikes. Because you can’t switch gears when biking up hills, riding a fixed gear bike is hard. But once you build the strength in your legs, you will be able to ride up them much faster. At the beginning, especially with steep hills you may need to dismount and walk. And constant pedaling improves the circulation to your legs and keeps your muscles supple.

Commuting: On long rides when you have to stop short it may be better to ride a conventional road bike. For a commute with many hills it may make more sense to be able to shift, so that you don’t get into the office super sweaty. It’s worth noting that geared folding bikes have been designed with rider’s comfort in mind. With a geared folding bicycle you’ll find it easy to go uphill and go downhill. That means that you’ll be able to overcome different types of challenges (hills, slopes, dirt and others) on the road with a folding bike of this type easily and quickly. All that you need to do is to pick the right speed during your ride. On the other hand, you may need to get off and walk up the hill with a single gear folding bicycle. That’s why it would be better for you to give a preference to a geared folding bike if you need a commuter.

Stuff: It’s much easier for a cyclist to carry a lot of stuff with a geared folding bike. If you have lots of stuff to carry, it may be beneficial to have a conventional road bike. You can buy bicycle accessories for your bike which will more easily accommodate a road bike than a fixed gear.

Positions: If you’re riding for long periods of time a conventional bike may be better because it allows your body more positions. With different handlebars you can shift your weight and be more comfortable.

Speed: Geared folding bikes are faster than fixed gear folding bikes. The reality is you need to make less effort to ride a geared folding bike at high speed. However, you’ll definitely need to pedal more actively if you ride a bike that comes with a fixed gear. It’s also important to note that you’ll get tired much faster if you ride a fixed gear folding bike. And of course, this will have a huge negative impact on your riding speed. There is no question that a geared folding bike is a better option if you need a bicycle for long distance travels. With a geared folding bicycle it will take you less time to reach the necessary destination.

Folding/unfolding: There are also some differences in the process of folding and unfolding fixed gear and geared folding bikes. You need to know that a fixed gear makes it possible for a cyclist to fold and unfold a bicycle very quickly. That’s the reason why fixed gear folding bikes can be folded and unfolded easier and faster comparing to geared folding bikes.

Weight. The weight of a folding bike also matters. The bike’s weight is particularly important if you often need to carry a bike. The lighter your folding bike is – the better. Let’s assume that you are looking for a lightweight folding bike that can be easily taken on public transport (bus, train, etc). If this is the case, we would recommend you to consider single speed folding bikes. It’s pretty clear that geared folding bikes are heavier than fixed gear ones. Thus, it will be more difficult for you to carry a geared folding bicycle.

Because bikes are so customizable with so many bike accessories, you should really consider how you intend to ride. Then you can choose a specific style of bike, whether it’s a hybrid, folding, fixed-gear or conventional ride and add bike accessories to make your ride more comfortable and convenient.


  1. Veronica

    I have a fixed gear, 20″ wheel, and I’m selling it because I have to pedal twice as much to get to the normal speed of a 26″. It’s exausting.

    • Tuan Do

      Hi Veronica,
      Most folding bikes use oversized chain ring and small rear cog to provide you the same feeling as a 26-inch bike. You can even reach high speed faster with small wheels.

  2. Veronica

    Mine probably has the same size as all the rest, that’s why it happens. The size of those parts is something to keep in mind when buying a fixed gear. I didn’t know that.

  3. Joana

    This was a really helpful article! I’ve been trying to figure out what a fixed gear bike is and how it functions relative to a geared bike, this explained it well! :)


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