Students get their fix on fixie riding

Carlos Macias and Sebastian Mantilla

Know what a fixie is?  Maybe not, but more than likely you’ve seen one in the bike racks as you come into school.  (They look like racing bikes.)

On any average day, you can count the bikes in the racks outside of school, and see how many students are riding fixed gear bicycles.  The other day, we counted 30 bikes and 11 were fixies.

A fixie is a fixed gear bike.  Fixies are bikes that have 2 wheel settings:  one is fixed and the other is called freewheel which is like every normal bike.  Fixed gear requires the cyclist to backpedal to brake or perform a skid.  It’s a very interesting way to ride; for some, it’s more of a lifestyle than just casual biking. There are many fixie riders you can come across in Cicero; many can be casual or pro bikers.  Some bikers have high end fixies; others have more affordable bikes in a variety of colors, styles, and builds — all in their own unique way.

Local fixie rider Efrain Briones, a senior at Morton East, has been riding for a long time.  Most fixie riders prefer biking in hotter temperatures.

“Since winter started, (I have been riding) not so often, but back in the summer, I would bike every single day and night,” Efrain Briones said.

You can reach very high speeds on a fixie.

“My top speed is 26.2 mph,” Efrain Briones said.

Fixies can go for a lot of money so this is a very expensive hobby or lifestyle.

“I’ve have been trying to stop spending money, so I mainly do trades, but I would say I have spend over $1,000 on my fixie,” senior Efrain Briones said.

Fixies need maintenance every once in a while just like a car.

“I take very good care of it , always checking what needs to to be cleaned after every ride I used to go on,” Efrain Briones said.

Some bike riders that are teenagers, though, would prefer a car over a bike.  Even Briones who is a fixie enthusiast.

“I would say (I want a ) car.  I’ve been biking for 5 years already, so I’d say it’s time to hang it up,” Efrain Briones said.