would the pros be faster on the track if they had gears?
the only place it could have an advantage is the start to top speed as the gear they turn is the gear they turn and is what they would aim for anyway even with gears.
When you add gears you add all the gubbins and a freewheel and you have lots of inertia bit of skip/lag on a pick up/gear change and no way of brakingPosted 5 years ago
So weight, complexity, friction, lag and freewheel would make it slower
I recon with the right kit (which doesn’t exist at the moment as there is no call) they would be quicker – especially in the kilo/team sprint type events.
Something like a fixed version of the nuvinci cvt hub capable of changing ratio under load. Yes, there would be some energy loss through the transmission but it would be more than offset by the improved acceleration off the line and maybe a higher top end speed with a final gearing not compromised by being possible to get out of the blocks with it.
Wouldn’t fancy being the engineer tasked with designing something capable of handling that level of torque whilst being small, light and aero though.Posted 5 years agokrixmeisterSubscriber
I know I’m missing the point, but I would regardless point out – it depends on the event. Not all track events are “sprints” from a low speed to high. There are various team and individual Pursuits, Madisons, etc where a selection of gearing would probably be of no use.
IANATC (I am not a track cyclist) so my opinion pretty worthless, but I would also suspect (getting pack onto the point of the OP) that as Hazeil mentions, in some of the Sprint events a gear change in the middle of the spring would probably not be beneficial.Posted 5 years ago
This is as daft a question as would I be quicker off road on an MX bike ?
No it’s not. It’s a silly question in that it’s never going to happen, but that doesn’t make the answer/thoughts boring. Gears bring inefficiency to the drivetrain, extra weight and complication – single ratio brings in compromise and slow acceleration. What would be better is open for debate. McLaren do this in F1 every so often – let their designers design (virtually) a “rules free” car to go around F1 tracks and work out how much faster it would be free of FIA shackles. Frees the mind of preconceptions and makes them better at their day job – well that’s what McLaren thinks anyway.
Krixmeister has it though – depends on the event.Posted 5 years agopuddingsMember
My local velodrome does geared training sessions and I lap faster on a fixed track bike than I do my road bike. The road bike initially seems to benefit from faster acceleration but it loses far more at the top end (I realise that this is unscientific because it slightly lower geared and less aero than the track bike but the track bike does seem to require less effort to keep moving quickly).Posted 5 years ago
I also wouldnt fancy trying to ride something like the madison with its sling shots while also trying to manage gears.yesiamtomMember
It would be slower and a **** tonne more dangerous. You don’t have brakes on a track for a reason. If you introduce gears you then need brakes because you cant run fixed*. Also i think some people here have never ridden a track/fixed bike, they accelerate quicker than most people can on road bikes and once up to speed are very very easy to pedal due to the efficiency of the whole system.
*hub gear fixed would be to heavyPosted 5 years ago
*hub gear fixed would be to heavy
That’s the beauty of the question – do you know that for a fact – I bet you don’t 😉
It’s a flat course and once up to speed weight has very little bearing. So what accelerates fastest a heavy hub gear set at a realistic ratio or a lighter fixed hub set at a massive ratio that initially is almost impossible to turn over?
And yes, I’ve ridden/raced fixed and track plenty!Posted 5 years ago
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