When buying a fixed gear or single speed bike it's very important to find the right gear ratio. Two of the most common gear ratios are 44:16 and 46:16 - what does that mean? Here we break down those gear ratios and help you find the perfect one to match your riding needs.
Really there’s no “best” gear ratio. Certain bikes are better for certain situations, and you should keep that in mind when searching for the right ride.
Here's what you need to know:
A gear ratio is determined by the number of teeth you have in the chain ring and the rear cog. We personally recommend riding a fixed gear or single speed bike with either 44 or 46 teeth in the chain ring (hence the first number in the gear ratio) and a rear cog with 16 teeth.
A 44/16 gear ratio, also sometimes written as a ratio of 2.75, allows for easier acceleration, but has lower top speeds and is generally more suited for leisurely cruising. It's also great for commuting to work or casually riding around with friends on the weekend. So, if you’re in a predominately flat area without hills, a bike with this gear ratio is the best choice for you.
All of the bikes in the Hi-Ten Series use a 44:16 gear ratio. Click here to learn more about the bikes.
A 46/16 gear ratio (2.88) on the other hand, provides higher top speeds, and is more efficient than the 44/16 - however acceleration will be more difficult. The 46/16 will permit you to travel farther with each pedal (you’ll basically have longer legs) and therefore cover more distance with less effort. While these bikes are also great for commuting and cruising around town they are best for trick riding or more performance related rides - like alleycats, crits, or distance races.
The CRMO Series bikes use a 46:16 gear ratio. Click here to learn more about the bikes.
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Cranksets are one of the main components in the bicycle drivetrain system. They turn the energy your legs create into the motion that drives the bicycle forward (or also backwards in the case of fixed gear bikes). A chainring has a certain amount of teeth noted in the specs. For example, 44 or 46 or 48 t or teeth. So what do these numbers mean and how does it affect me when biking?