Swobo Crosby

At the Interbike Expo trade show last month, the Gear Junkie crew saw a few airplane hangers’ worth of bike gear to go ga-ga over. Among that mix, and surfacing up near the top in the “I-want” category, the Crosby bike from Swobo is a consummate commuter the company dubs as an “all-purpose road bike.” It takes design cues from the world of cyclocross to build a do-all single-speed that switches from freewheel to fixed with the turn of a screwdriver on the rear hub.

Swobo Crosby Single Speed / Fixed Gear Bike

Swobo Crosby

Indeed, the bike’s SRAM Torpedo hub allows for the quick conversion from fixed to freewheel without flip-flopping the wheel. It takes seven turns of a screwdriver to convert it “from track bike hero to single speed coasting casual,” as the company puts it.

Beyond its single-speed nature, the Crosby is a cyclocross bike dressed up in urban clothes. Its butted aluminum frame has a square-section top tube near the seat tube to make it easy to carry (as in shouldering the bike for ‘cross). The fork is carbon. It can accommodate cantilever brakes or disc brakes.

Swobo hub.jpg

SRAM Torpedo rear hub

It has the clearance and eyelets for fenders or a rack, and it runs fat and knobby ‘cross tires or skinnys if you want more speed on the road. Single-speed at its core, the Crosby has forged horizontal dropouts, though an optional dropout can be swapped in for use with a derailleur — a French word, the company jokes, that “we don’t use too often over here.”

The bike, which weighs about 22 pounds, costs $999 complete and comes in six frame sizes ready to ride. www.swobo.com

—Stephen Regenold

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