Sunday, December 30, 2012

Project Fatbike halfway there

A year ago I told someone that fatbikes were a heavy, stupid, waste of time, I may have even called my friend " a real asshole" for wanting one.  Now in 2012 I realize that fatbikes are a heavy, stupid, waste of time; and that is exactly why I wanted one. 

Over the past few weeks I have been building a Surly Pugsley. The Pugsley was the first mass produced fatbike in 2005 and to this day remains a pretty rad option for finding your own trails. The process of building a fatbike with it's weird offset frame spacing and piggish 100 millimeter downhill bottom bracket has taught me a few things: #1 I have a very resilient face and #2 being a weight weenie puts you in the 30 pound range for a fatbike, which is obscenely heavy for any other bike.
When you deal carbon, titanium or cocaine you measure in grams; with fatbikes you measure in pounds.

Fatbikes were originally made for riding bikes in the Alaskan winter -which typically lasts 49 weeks- and have up to 4.7 inch tires to give the best float and traction in snow and sand. A fatbike sitting next to any other bicycle looks oafish and clunky almost like a monster truck.  As of December 30th the Philadelphia metro area has had a total of 4 inches of snow making my fatbike purchase a (potential) colossal waste of what could have been a very nice carbon wheelset for my 29er. With any luck it will just dump snow this year and I will be loving life on my 26x4.0 45NRTH Escalators
a fatbike in it's natural element


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