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Review: Fixie Inc. Floater Race 8s

 If you're a regular reader of this blog you may or may not have noticed that I have ridden quite a lot of bicycles in the last year or so. I think I have finally found what I've been looking for.

Fixie Inc. Floater Race 8s

Fixie Inc. Floater Race 8s

I'm not a fan of having multiple bikes. I've done that and it's not for me. I much more prefer having one, maybe two bikes which are kept in good shape and ready to ride. So, I have sold all my bicycles and at the moment I only have one. I might buy another one for grocery shopping but that's about it.

I saw this bike in an online store and started thinking that it would make a create gravel/touring bike for my adventures. I decided to buy it. I knew that I wanted to replace some of the parts from the get-go so I ordered those too.

When the bike arrived I noticed that there will be some work to be done. Hub bearings on both wheels were way too tight. Rims were out of true pretty badly. Gears weren't working very well. However after servicing the hubs, truing the wheels and setting up the gears everything started to look very nice.

I changed the cranks, bottom bracket, saddle, tyres, brake pads as well as the chainring. Later this month I will also replace the handlebar. So pretty much everything will be changed, except the frame,  headset, wheels and the seatpost. I will also keep the derailleur as well as the shifter and the brake lever. Brake calipers are also ok after changing better brake pads.

The frame is good and after servicing the hubs the wheels are also pretty ok and I will certainly use them for now. What I really like is the frame geometry, it fits me very well and I really like riding it. It also comes with 10-year warranty.

This bicycle costs only around 500 euros, so I knew I would need to replace some of the parts to get it reliable enough for my fairly long rides. You may ask why to buy a cheap bike and upgrade it with parts that almost double it's price? 

Well. I like to do things in my own way. I like to build bicycles. I like the frame of this bicycle. It's also very rewarding to buy relatively cheap bicycle and make it work for you. The bike really feels it's made for me. This bicycle rides better than the bicycle which I used to have and that cost three times the price. 

My recommendation

If you're planning to buy this bicycle, make sure you know how to do basic bicycle maintenance. Or take it to the local bike shop so they can build it up for you. Wheels will probably need truing and the hubs will probably need servicing. Despite of those things the parts are good quality, except the bottom bracket is not that great. Fortunately bottom brackets are cheap so it's something I would recommend you to change right away.

This bicycle can take 32mm tyres, it actually comes with 32c tyres made by Meghna. This is good tyre clearance to have because it means you can fit nice gravel tyres, touring tyres as well as studded tyres for the winter.

The bike has 8 gears. The cassette is 30-11 and the default chainring is 46 tooth one. I replaced it with a narrow wide 44 tooth chainring. I use 9 speed chain, it works very well with 8 speed cassette and with the narrow wide chainring. In general narrow wide chainrings do not really work very well with 8 speed chains. For me 8 gears is easily more than enough for my long distance rides. Your opinion may vary.

One good thing in this bicycle is that the rear spacing (O.L.D) is 135mm. It makes it very easy to buy hubs and rim brake wheelsets. I happen to like rim brakes more than disk brakes. You may not.

If you want a bicycle that have some room for customization and you're not afraid some service work from the get-go I would recommend this bicycle. Fixie Inc. Floater Race 8s. makes a good framework for building your dream bicycle. All dreams do not need to be very expensive.

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