Just put together a brand new single speed fixie style bike. There is a skipping or catch motion when the bike is upside down (on the seat and handle bars) and I'm pedalling the crank and then stop and let the back tire spin (free wheel motion). I'm guessing that in that position once I stop spinning the pedals connected to the crank arm should just be still while the back tire is spinning.

What is happening is that the crank arm/pedal acts like it catches on something and moves and then stops and then catches again, moves and then stops when the back bike tire is spinning. It doesn't seem normal, especially because it's a new bike.

Also I only took around the block to test drive and it seems when I stop pedalling it hold my feet on the pedals in a 3 o'clock / 9 o'clock position there is a clicking or catching sound happening there as well. When pedalling the bike feels normal.

Here is a short 8 second video of the skipping when the bike is upside down on the seat and handle bars

What do you think may be the issue? Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  • I think the grease in the freewheel is a little thick and lumpy yet. Oct 3, 2015 at 0:36
  • 5
    Something's sticking inside the freewheel. Ride it for a couple miles, and see if it works itself out. If not, I'd send it back and get a new one. Oct 4, 2015 at 4:41
  • I would say the chain maybe too tight.
    – Alexander
    Oct 11, 2015 at 4:42

2 Answers 2


After a month the the freewheel did not improve so I bought and installed a new Shimano freewheel. The results were night and day. Gone was the knock when pedaling and the warble of the back tire was gone as well.

The OEM freewheel was like dog excrement and the new Shimano is like pedaling on butter.

  • Thank you for the followup - closure and "what actually worked" is just as important as the initial question.
    – Criggie
    Nov 11, 2015 at 20:05

Based on your video, I will second the guess that things are just a little stiff yet. Perhaps the grease is a little thick. It does not look like anything is "wrong". But the sound when you are pedaling concerns me a little. It could be normal - after all - this is a single-speed, and the rear sprocket does have a freewheel mechanism - which just means that it could still just be that this unit is new, and the grease is a bit thick and heavy. Usually my singlespeeds do not give me a clicking like a multi-speed freewheel does, but I'm pretty sure the pawl mechanism is basically the same - so you could get a clicking just 'cuz it is a freewheel. Got any experience cycling buddies (who could see the bike and you) you could ask about this?

  • Whether or not the freewheel clicks when coasting depends on the design of the unit. Some models consider a loud click to be a badge of honor, others strive for complete silence. Oct 11, 2015 at 12:10

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