ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Sports and Recreation»
  • Individual Sports

Top 5 Cheap Fixie Frames: Reviews of Strong, Affordable Options

Updated on September 10, 2014
Source

My Picks: The Best Cheap Fixed Gear Bicycle Frames

If you're new to fixed gear bicycles, and you want to build your own, chances are you have a few questions about the components you should use. And if you're like me, you probably want to build your fixie as cheaply as possible! Fortunately, they can be very inexpensive to put together, so you can be riding in no time without breaking the bank. Finding a good, cheap fixie frame is the first step.

One of the most beautiful things about fixed gear bicycles is the fact that you can totally customize them, building them from the ground up. This modularity allows your ride to be totally unique, and it's a lot of fun to plan and build.

In this lens, I want to look at some of the best fixie frames you can find nowadays. While technically speaking you can use almost any frame to build upon, the best way to get started is to find one that's built specifically for the riding style you're after. Finding a good, cheap fixed gear bicycle frame isn't terribly difficult, but it can be confusing.

I'm going to show you five of my favorite cheap fixie frames, and I'll review each one. I will try to look at different types and looks, so you'll have some variety to choose from. I'll look at the materials, construction, rigidity, configuration and riding style of each one. Hopefully this will help you find an inexpensive fixie frame that works for you!

Let's get started.

Fixed Gear Fork Ends
Fixed Gear Fork Ends | Source

Fixed Gear Frame Must Haves:

What Your Cheap Fixie Frame Needs To Look Like...

You can find bicycle frames of all shapes and sizes just about everywhere you look. Unfortunately, not every frame is suitable for a fixed gear bike. Let's take a look at a couple 'must haves' for your cheap fixed gear bicycle frame.

-Your fixie frame needs to be large enough to accommodate standard wheels. In most cases you won't be able to use a BMX frame or anything too small, because the forks need to be able to hold 700c wheels (the standard common size these days).

-You need horizontal dropouts or 'track fork ends'. With a fixie you'll need a nice taught chain. So, you'll need some room in the dropouts (where the rear wheel slots into place) so you can pull the whole wheel back and tighten up the chain. A loose frame seriously hinders your ability to ride. (See picture for a reference of what this looks like).

State Bicycle Co: A Cheap Fixed Gear Frame In Many Colours

A bicycle frame and fork that's affordable

The State Bicycle Co. has a ton of great stuff for anyone who's into tricking out their fixie, so they're a favourite of mine. They offer a cheap fixie frame in a variety of colours and sizes that's pretty much perfect for a highly customized build. They are light, fast, strong and unbranded, so they're an excellent choice all in all.

They offer their frames in chromoly steel, TIG welded for accuracy and integrity. They include track style fork dropouts on the rear, and they are set up specifically for track, fixie and single speed builds in mind. The best thing about these frames is the extreme variety of colour and size. If you don't find a combination that suits your fancy, you're probably extremely picky!

Like their wheels, I highly recommend these State Bicycle Co. frames for your cheap fixie build. With a price under $200 they are a great value.

Pure Fix: Cheap Fixie Frames With Excellent Build Quality

A highly affordable fixed gear bicycle frame set

Pure Fix is one of my favourite fixie brands, and their complete bikes are some of the best value items around. This is a solid frame for anyone seeking a great platform to built a track or fixed gear bicycle upon. It's actually shockingly inexpensive, and it's one of the cheapest fixie frames that includes forks.

The Pure Fix frameset has a high tensile steel construction, meaning it's lighter than average and extremely strong. It has 120mm rear spacing, perfect for the setup of most fixed gear wheelsets, meaning you can plug in a rear wheel and go.

It's also a very attractive frame with it's aggressive lines, subtle matte paint and minimalist approach. It's a superior basis for any build you'd want to do. Definitely one of the top contenders for cheaper fixie frames you should consider.

EighthInch Scrambler Track Fixed Gear Frameset (51cm - White)
EighthInch Scrambler Track Fixed Gear Frameset (51cm - White)

Inexpensive, cable guides, strong gusseted frame, great brand name, a good cheap fixie frame for sale.

 

EighthInch Scrambler Track Fixed Gear Frame

Cheap, Strong Fixie Frame with Top Tup Gusseting

This EighthInch fixie frame is very cheap and is pretty high quality for the price. Frankly, you'll be hard pressed to find a better deal, money wise. At the time of this writing it's on sale for $125, and you get a fully painted chromoly frame and a seat post and forks: a difficult deal to beat!

This frame has very low profile cable stops (where brake cable housing fits in) so it has a very clean, sleek and minimalist look. Most cheap fixie frames eschew the cable guides, so this is a nice bonus feature.

The horizontal track dropouts make adding and removing the rear wheel and tightening the chain a very easy task.

The geometry is pretty standard for a road bike, and you'll probably find it comfortable if you prefer a mixed riding style. The tubing is standard sized and this frame would work for either a classic or modern look. It's a great cheap fixie frame and a good canvas to work with.

Tommaso Augusta: A Good, Inexpensive Track Bike Frame

A fixed gear / track bike frame that's affordable and strong

The Tommaso Augusta is a little higher in price than the previous couple of frames we've looked at, but it's also a step above in terms of quality and construction. You can see by checking out the photos that these frames are well built and pretty slick looking. Notice those amazing forks!

Built with chromoly steel, the frame is extremely strong and light. It's pre-drilled for front and rear brakes, so if you prefer riding with a brake setup (my recommendation!) this is a good platform to start with. This frame can also accept fairly large tires if you prefer a bit more traction, up to 700x28 in clearance room.

Like most track frames it has track fork end dropouts making it ready for a fixed gear wheel setup out of the box. Overall the Tommaso Augusta is a beautiful frame, available in black, white and grey, and it's a good choice for a cheap fixie frame.

Vilano Chromoly Fixed Gear Frame

A cheap, chromoly fixie frame that looks great!

Vilano is a brand that's embraced the fixed gear style and aesthetic. This chromoly frameset is gorgeous and very affordable to pick up. Aside from being super strong for those of you who like to ride hard, this is a great looking and cheap fixie frame that will work for virtually any build. Available in many sizes, the frame is designed in a classic style and geometry. You're guaranteed to get some looks rolling on one of these.

It's a straightforward road design with a classic frame geometry. That makes it perfect for most riding styles. Check out the track fork ends with generous room, great for ensuring a taught chain.

Super light, fast and durable, this is about the best bang for your buck at this price range. It even comes with a fork, and for this low cost you can easily afford to purchase a pretty decent wheelset. A note: this style of frame tends to run a bit large in size, so keep that in mind when you're choosing yours. I recommend the Vilano Chromoly as one of the best inexpensive fixie frames out there.

Fixed Gear Bikes

Hey, building up a bike from a fixie frame is a lot of work! You may want to consider buying a complete bike and modifying it to suit your needs. Here are some examples of inexpensive starting points for fixed gear bikes. You can always strip down some of the parts and replace them with what you really want. The whole, complete bikes themselves aren't much more than the frames, so it's worth taking a look.

Other Recommendations:

Cheap Fixed Gear Frames

The above is only a list of frames that I've had a great experience with. It's by no means exclusive. I do have a few more tips when it comes to tracking down cheaper fixed gear bike frames online. You want to protect yourself and avoid buying junk (and yes, there are some real junk frames available out there).

Cheaper fixie frames generally contain shoddy paint, poor metal quality and sub-par craftsmanship. The tubes will be misaligned, covered in burrs or simply not welded well. It's worth your time to do a bit of research and go for quality. All my recommendations are excellent quality, so consider taking a look at a few of them first.

-Avoid any 'no-name' brands, or any brands you've never heard of. If all else fails, try to find a review of the one you're looking at. Cheap fixed gear frames exist, even ones with brands, so don't compromise on this.

-Beware of shipping costs. Some online retailers will offer a super low rate, but make up the difference in shipping. Realistically, your frame shouldn't cost more than $30 to ship within the continental US.

Good Luck!

What do you think of these fixie frames?

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 5 years ago

      Great tips and advice.

    • orange3 lm profile image

      orange3 lm 5 years ago

      Great information and tip about shipping costs.

    • BikePro profile image
      Author

      BikePro 5 years ago

      Thank you both!

    • BLemley profile image

      Beverly Lemley 5 years ago from Raleigh, NC

      Boy, you know a LOT about all types of bikes and what makes them run and how to keep them running! I admire your wealth of information. You will become a reference guide for bike enthusiasts, for sure! B : )

    • LusUfo LM profile image

      LusUfo LM 5 years ago

      Great lens, a lot of useful information.

    • hamstring profile image

      hamstring 4 years ago

      Love your lens theme.

      I think the one thing about track frames (besides the fact that it lacks cable stops) is that it tends to have a lot steeper geometry -- meaning that it can leave you feeling like you are riding on your nose.

      I always preferred a more classic geometry since it sat me a little more upright where I could watch traffic.

      Long live Fixie's!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      What's your thoughts on pake frames? pakebikes dot com.

      Thanks for this article. I've been looking online for cheap frames to start with and, as you noted, bumped into multiple companies totocycling, ozotw and stradacustoms to name a few.

    • BikePro profile image
      Author

      BikePro 4 years ago

      @anonymous: I like Pake frames quite a bit. That rum runner frame is chromoly, which is my favorite frame material (strong, light). Really well priced too. Toto is ok, they're basically factory bikes, not terrible but not my first choice. Ozotw looks really nice, but I have no first hand experience with them, same with Strada.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Any opinions on the toto frames, fresco single speed frames on eBay?

    • BikePro profile image
      Author

      BikePro 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Hi! Toto frames are factory made in China. They're good quality. Aluminum frames like that tend to have big weld beads on the joints, just a cosmetic thing. Personally I prefer steel frames like the State Bicycle ones above, but the Fresco would be nice and light. Hope that helps.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @BikePro: Def helps, I was looking for a track bike for the velo and thought the cut out was more "aero" and was visually more appealing too. And cheap to build

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @BikePro: Also just saw on eBay TF-B frames, track fixed road bike for pretty good price including headset and bb- made of alloy but welds look cleaner. Have you seem these? Thanks for patience and advice! Also, if you know I usually ride a 52 frame, am 5'6" with a 30 inseam, they have either 50 or 53. Which do you advise to choose?

    • BikePro profile image
      Author

      BikePro 4 years ago

      @anonymous: The TF-B welds probably won't be any cleaner. Aluminum frames tend to have big welds, and most aero frames in this price range will be aluminum. The welds won't be very noticeable, especially if you choose matte paint. I've never seen a TF-B frame up close, but they look pretty decent. You should pick frames in the 52 - 54 range, 50 would be too small.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Thanks for advice. One more question- found a deal for a used Felt TK3 for about 1/2 price. Would this be worth it? Thanks again.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Just built a fixie from scratch last summer on a TF-B 56 Frame, it's wonderful. I've put about 1K on that thing and it's given me no trouble it's some of the other components that I used that are pissing me off

    Click to Rate This Article