I was riding an audax in Cornwall on one of those cheap Tange Frames that SJS used to do
The bike had an 8 speed triple but then a stick flicked into the drive train took out the derailluer, broke a couple of spokes
I converted it to single speed and carried on riding. I got lost and lost a bit of time so didn't complete the audax but I managed to make it back to the hall
After this the bike had to stay a single speed as the derailluer hanger had rusted out. Now, you know that you always keep those old 8 speed chains and cassettes and stuff "just in case they come in handy"? Well make a single speed like this and suddenly all that crap is handy! I never ran out of chains or sprockets!
I used a 66" or 70" gear and it was fine in Devon as long as I was careful with the route to avoid the really steep stuff
One winter I did do occasional 70 mile round trip commutes over Exmoor on it.
Alas, after a few years of riding in all weathers with my causal attitude towards maintenance the headset froze and I couldn't change the headset bearings
The headset got stiffer and notchier. I bought another bike to do the commute on. I took the wheels off and sold the brake levers.
Eventually the frame with the frozen headset went to the dump. I offered the frame to friends but a 24" rusty frame has limited appeal. Maybe one day I'll have another 1 speed bike, but I doubt it. My knees aren't getting any younger
Here is a picture of it on a sunny day. You will notice from the picture that it still has the triple chainset on. Funny, the middle ring kept wearing out.single speed
, on Flickr