Friday, January 4, 2013

Fatbikes, a conclusion

 Fatbikes + not being an uber competitive douche = AWESOME!
I have 3 rides on my Surly Pugsley, I have ridden mostly fast, cross country terrain with minimal climbing.  The places I took the pugsley on trails I knew and used Strava to get a good comparison of relative speed compared to my normal ride. It isn't exactly a fair fight since the pug has 9 gears and my other bike is a single speed 29er but, with a 10 pound weight difference I had to even the playing field a little.  I have been riding a single speed mountain bike exclusively for more than a year and a half so have 8 extra speeds was mind blowing.
I prefer to call  gears by their original name circa 1906, "CHEATING"
How fatty handled out on the trail
On a 3/4 mile segment with several log-overs and only 50 feet of climbing, the pug was only slower than my fastest time by 8 seconds. Not surprisingly the pug was super smooth going over bumps smaller than 8 inches. I was impressed by how capable this full rigid 26 inch bike takes itself over much taller obstacles. For a 32.5 pound bike i found it to be quite nimble when it came to clearing logs.
The only place where the fatbike felt sluggish was on a long, smooth, 3.7% uphill.  Straight away trails leave your mind little else but time to focus on the squish.

I would publish my Strava segment as proof of my negligible decrease in speed but, due to a legal battle where I was falsely accused of killing an Asian guy in the bay area I will have to substitute with a non-Strava approved map.
I was riding in the lower right side of the diagonal stripes
Who should get a fatbike?
1. People who don't give a fuck or PWDGAF. Not giving a fuck gives you a big advantage when building, buying or riding a fatbike since people with significantly lighter bikes will call your new princess stupid, and obese. PWDGAF don't usually race or act like hyper competitive dicks, so owning a slightly slower bike is of little consequence. PWDGAF have also heard people say "you're a 30 year old man, why do you spend so much time on a bicycle?" and shrugged it off, so riding an heavy, weirdo bike is no big deal.
2. Attention whores. Attention whores love getting open-ended questions so that they have an opportunity to really talk about themselves, really. I have owned the pugsley for less than 2 weeks and I have had strangers ask to take pictures of my bike, people in cars honk and wave, and countless other riders grill me about specifics.  Every other bike person will pick up your fatbike and say, "hmm not too bad," inspect the tires and say "what size are those" and so many more openings to talk about YOU!  Don't you get it attention whores? No one has asked about your Zipp 303 Firecrest wheels for almost 14 months. Since the fatbike (trend/fad) is still relatively new it will give you the opportunity to talk incessantly about yourself for the next 18 months at least.
3. Triathletes. Great way to cross-train bro, and chances are you are already an attention whore too, bonus.
4. "Steel-is-real" Hipster douchebags. This last group will buy anything pseudo obscure and pretend it is cool for a season and then, complain that it "got too corporate" when they realize it is too hard. Hipsters also love to talk about themselves but, will probably only get about half the mileage that attention whores will get out of owning a fatbike since, eventually one of their friends will realize the bike is made in Taiwan.
I used to have an organic free range alpaca farm but, that shit got too corporate. -Filthy Portland Hipster
With more manufacturers coming out with Fatbikes every year it won't be long until they are more commonplace, there is even a rumor that Kona has a Fatty in the works for 2014.  
 All things considered I am very happy with my Pugsley purchase, and I look forward many more slow, obscure, amazingly fun rides on it.

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