Women’s Bikes and Men Bikes are becoming more popular, and have been since the 1990s. The beach cruiser bike, or simply the cruiser bike, is a close relative of the lowrider bike. The best cruiser bikes are the ones that are simpler bikes to use, maintain, and ride. Don’t you agree? I think their smooth riding is what makes casual rides more fun!
But beach cruisers don’t usually come with gears and brakes. You might come across beach cruisers with multiple gears but most people don’t prefer that. Having gears on a beach cruiser makes it easier to adapt to different riding terrains, with more versatility, better pedaling efficiency, and less wear and tear. While there are 7-speed cruiser bikes for sale, traditional beach cruisers are of the single-speed variety.
Why Beach Cruisers Should Have Gear
Traditionally, the beach cruiser is a single-speed bike. This is because it was made with a focus on affordability. While it is completely fine for people to stick to this option out of nostalgia or some such thing, it is not always the best choice. Let first begin with why beach cruisers should have gears:
1. Better Adaptability
Having gears will make it easier for you to ride on a variety of terrains. Yes, it is great to ride without having to worry about gears but what about when you need to ride uphill? Having gears will make it easier for you to navigate the rougher tracks.
Instead of having to possibly change the entire drivetrain of the single-speed bike to change the gear ratios, the 7-speeder allows for the use of the derailleur when changing gear. With the gears on a beach cruiser, all those people who love the slow, languorous pedaling strokes while “cruising” along will be able to do exactly this.
2. More Versatility
Having gears will make you feel like you have a mountain bike! You will have better pedaling efficiency, which in my experience, means a better ride. With gears, it is also easier to improve your speed.
3. A More Enjoyable Ride
Now, I have taken a spin on both kinds, with as well as without gears. I did notice that the ride with gears was more enjoyable because I was able to be carefree without having to push too hard!
This is more relatable if you own only a cruiser bike. With gears, you will be able to ride anywhere you want. That gives you more flexibility.
5. Less Wear And Tear
Hear me out! A single-gear chain ring has more stress on it. When you have multiple gears and chainrings, the tension is distributed. Therefore, you will have lesser maintenance needs because the chain might not wear out that often.
6. Safety and ease of use
These two go hand in hand especially when it comes to beach cruisers. While you may only be using the cruiser in your city, you won’t always be on flat, level surfaces. There is a difference between a great workout and unnecessary exhaustion. The more tired and stressed a cyclist is the more dangerous they are.
Why You Should Have Brakes On Cruiser Bikes
While it is still one of the most popular brakes in use when it comes to coaster bikes of the traditional single-speed variety, the coaster brake has a lot of disadvantages. One can end up having a cycling accident because the coaster didn’t allow you to stop quickly enough to avoid it.
Having either a completely revamped system of hand brakes instead of coasters, or simply a backup system for your beach cruiser is one of the better decisions you can make in terms of simplicity, safety, and ease of use. It is always better to have hand brakes on your beach cruisers because:
1. It Is More Safe
Having hand brakes either as the main braking system or a backup brake system in addition to your beach cruiser’s coaster brakes is a very safe choice indeed. Coaster brakes leave room for skidding. Even though the balloon tires on beach cruisers are very good for riding on sand (hence the name), the coaster brakes can cause the tires to skid pretty fast. This can result in your ride requiring replacement tires quite often.
Hand brakes can eliminate the chances of the tires skidding, and you should be able to be far safer when riding a beach cruiser at high speeds, whether on the street or the actual beach. In addition, there is the safety concern that the chain might fail. Since hand brakes don’t rely on the chain to stop, you can brake in case of an emergency chain drop that you did not see coming.
2. You’ll Have A Better Control
Coaster brakes are far harder to control than hand brakes. When descending a hill on a beach cruiser, or any bike, you must have exactly the right amount of control over your braking. If using a coaster brake to slow your descent, you could very well end up not giving enough braking power and wind up freewheeling screaming down the hill yelling for your mother, father, and a whole family tree of relatives.
However, hand brakes off the option of perfectly tuning your braking power both before and during the braking process. With the right modulation on your braking, you should be able to descend those steep gradients safely.
3. There Is Better Heat Dissipation
The best part about hand brakes when compared to coaster brakes is their high rate of heat dissipation when braking. This allows for more abrupt stops as well as safer cycling because tires are less prone to overheating.
It is quite common to have to replace the grease and innards of your coaster brake if you have been going downhill using them. Without doing this, you would be taking away their few safety features, and turning your beach cruiser into a death trap.
Well, those are 5 of the reasons you need to consider getting brakes of the hand variety and gears for your beach cruiser. No matter how classic you want the bike to appear, safety should always be your number one priority. With the right kind of brakes and gears, you should be able to have a classy, safe cruise on your cruiser bike!
What do you think about having gears and brakes on a beach cruiser bike? Let me hear you out in the comments!
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