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If you’re reading this article you’re most likely a fan or maybe even an owner of a beach cruiser bike. Whether you are borrowing, renting, or just purchased one you will probably want to learn more about beach cruisers. Although some facts about beach cruisers are generally known, there is always something new to learn.
Are beach cruisers fast? Beach cruisers are not generally considered fast. The average speed of a beach cruiser typically ranges anywhere between 3 and 15 miles per hour depending on which model you have and how hard you pedal. Beach cruisers aren’t designed for high speeds. They are designed to be a comfortable ride.
SINGLE-SPEED BEACH CRUISER BIKE
A single-speed bike is just that: a bicycle with two wheels built with just one speed. This means you will never have to switch gears. For many of us our first bikes were single gear. The harder you pedaled them the faster you would go.
With a single-speed beach cruiser bike you simply have to pedal forward and you will go forward and if you pedal backwards your bike will stop. Some beach cruisers have a hand brake but most models just have coaster brakes. So, if you are ok with going about 5 mph a single-speed beach cruiser is a perfect choice for you.
This bike is simple, which makes it easy to ride, but since it doesn’t have multiple gears and cogs you cannot shift to a higher or lower gear if the terrain changes. That’s why a single-speed beach cruiser bike is used for short distance commuting and it’s easy for riding as long as your route is fairly flat. If you live in an area with many hills then a beach cruiser is probably not the best option for you.
THREE-SPEED BEACH CRUISER BIKES
What about another type of a classical beach cruiser that has three speeds? This kind of bicycle is good for longer rides up to 20 miles and speeds of 5-10 MPH. Thanks to its three gears this beach cruiser can be go faster than a single gear as well as handle small inclines.
A three-speed cruiser bike’s gears allow you to adjust your speed and the effort required to move based on your terrain.It certainly doesn’t have as many options as a 10+ speed bike so it still isn’t good for long sustained hills but it is better with hills than the single speed cruiser. . Beach cruiser bikes with gears are still laid-back enough for you to move freely and to have fun, but they also make pedaling much easier so you can ride on more surfaces and terrains.
The three speed beach cruiser bike is a good choice for you if you need to use one gear for climbing, one gear for descending and one for cruising. A good thing to keep in mind is that beach cruisers aren’t designed to be hill climbers so even though a 3 speed bike will help you go up hills it still isn’t the best option for hilly terrain. Two popular models of three-speed beach cruiser bikes are:
WAYS TO MAKE A BEACH CRUISER FASTER
As much as a slow and relaxing ride with a beach cruiser bike can be fun and entertaining, at times it’s nicer if you can go faster. Since we live in an increasingly technological world this little problem can be solved.
You are probably wondering how it is possible to make a beach cruiser bike faster. I will give you some answers and the ways to make your beach cruiser faster below.
The easiest way to have a faster beach cruiser is to buy a multi-speed beach cruiser bike in the first place. Of course that isn’t rocket science but if you know ahead of time that you want to go faster or will have some hilly terrain buying a 3 or 7 speed bike is a good option.
Another way to reach higher speeds on your cruiser, is to purchase a bike with a motor or add one to your existing bike.
Some modern beach cruisers come with pedal assist. Although the whole idea of a beach cruiser is to slow down our fast-paced life, there’s nothing wrong with speeding up your laid-back life when you are in a hurry. Pedal assist can do wonders for your ride time by making your ride to or from your destination considerably quicker. Of course I wouldn’t recommend this option if you just bike to enjoy the scenery or weather.
There are some electric cruiser bikes that can produce speeds over 25 mph. Some of the most popular electric bikes can be found here. Check out a video of how it works below:
The position of your seat can also have a great influence on your cycling speed. Having it too high or low can decrease the amount of pedaling power that you can generate with each pump of your legs. So, adjusting the bike seat to make it as comfortable as possible is another way where you can speed up your riding time.
Adjusting the tire pressure is one more thing you should do if you want to speed up your beach cruiser. A good pressure range for your cruiser is between 30 and 40 PSI depending on your weight and the model of the tires. If you are heavy you should fill your tires all the way to about 40 PSI. Having low tire pressure will increase rolling resistance, which reduces speed. If you want to accurately inflate the correct tire pressure you can use a digital tire pressure reader.
Always be sure to check the manufacturer’s recommendations and don’t overinflate your tires.
One of the things that can also help in making a beach cruiser bike faster is actually a quite obvious one and is really just common sense, keep your bicycle clean! Any dirt that gets lodged in your chain or gears can disrupt the overall performance of your cruiser and your top speed will be affected.
After cleaning the chain, it’s very important to lubricate it. Maintaining a smooth bike chain is essential for a good ride and it will also allow you to reach higher speeds with less work.
Aligning the breaks is also something you should consider if you want to be faster on your bike. Malfunctioning hand brakes can rub up against your wheels and this will make pedaling more difficult and it will prevent you from reaching the highest speeds possible.
The easiest solution is probably the first one that I mentioned – buying a multi speed beach cruiser.
HOW MANY SPEEDS CAN A BEACH CRUISER BIKE HAVE?
Multi-speed cruiser bikes are most often three speed and seven speed. Different number of gears can make a huge difference if you need to gain some extra speed or conquer a steep hill from time to time. They give the bike some added versatility and can make longer rides easier on your body. Not having to push the bike on every hill is also a nice bonus.
For example, a very popular and highly rated model Firmstrong Urban Lady Beach Cruiser Bicycle is available in four options.
Single-speed is ideal for casual, recreational riding on flat terrain. The rear coaster brake system is easy to use — just pedal backwards to glide to a stop. It is good for rides up to 20 miles and speeds up to 5 MPH.
3-speed Shimano internal hub with easy-to-use shifter gives you more gears for climbing hills and enjoying longer rides. It also includes a rear coaster brake and it’s great for rides up to 20 miles and speeds up to 5-7 MPH.
7-speed Shimano external hub allows you more riding options — from short leisure trips to long distance commutes and it has front and rear handbrakes. This model is good for rides up to 30 miles and speeds up to 20 MPH.
21-speed Shimano Tourney derailleur provides a wide range of gears for tackling more high intensity riding. Front and rear hand brakes make stopping easy and precise. It’s good for rides up to 40 miles and speeds up to 30 MPH.
No matter which bike you choose it is important to buy from a reputable dealer. If you choose to purchase your bike online make sure that they have a good return policy and that they ship from the United States and not overseas. Some companies appear to be located in the USA but after you order you will discover that your bike will take multiple weeks to arrive.
Here at Cruiser Republic all of our bikes ship from our warehouses in the USA and are shipped via Fedex with a Free tracking number so that way you know exactly when your bike will arrive