Posts in the category Fatbike

Chromag Shores Up a Fat Bike with Nice Dreams

Chromag Nice Dreams fat bike  (2)

Based on the fact that their warehouse and office is hidden within Whistler’s Function Junction, it’s safe to assume that Chromag is a North Shore brand through and through. Because of that, you might not expect to see a fat bike from Chromag, but that’s exactly what we have with the Nice Dreams. Looking at the bike though, it’s clear that this is a fat bike with plenty of influence from the shore.

What started as a prototype frame after getting their hands on an early sample of a RockShox Bluto suspension fork, eventually turned into the production bike you see here. After enough desire was expressed both within the company and from potential customers, the first 10 Nice Dreams frames were made…

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How Low Can Your Gauge Go? Kappius Offers Incredibly Accurate Pressure Gauges

Kappius pressure gauge fat bike cross ultra low bicycle

A lot has been made recently about bicycle pumps and the ability of their gauges to be accurate at low pressures. Most tend to maintain the highest level of precision at pressures well above where the average fat bike, cyclocross bike, or even mountain bike is run. One or two psi off might not seem like much, but when you’re only running 10 psi, up to 20% variance is a big deal.

Apparently, when Brady Kappius isn’t busy rethinking bicycle hubs and designing complete wheels, there is enough time to come up with gems like his new Digitial Pressure Gauge. Available in 3 varieties, the Gauge will be sold in Fat Bike, Cyclocross/Low MTB, and Cyclocross/MTB pressure ranges. The Fat Bike model will measure from 0-15 psi with 0.01 psi resolution, then 0-30 psi also with 0.01 psi resolution for the Cyclocross/Low MTB option, and finally 0-50 psi with 0.02 resolution for the Cyclocross/MTB gauge all with a +/- 1% accuracy.

Each gauge is for presta valves only and includes a bleeder valve so you can pump up the tire past the desired pressure, then bleed it down to the precise number. Powered by an included 9v battery, the gauge has a 20 minute auto off feature, and each model has a pressure limit that is twice the intended pressure range (so don’t use the fat bike model on your road bike!). Available for pre-order currently on the Kappius store, each gauge will run $159.99 and will look slightly different than the gauge above.

D.FENDER Brings Made in the USA Coverage to Blutos, Fat Bikes, and 29+

DFENDER Final Proof

The more we ride, the more fenders like the new D.FENDER seem like a great idea for year ’round riding. Currently one of the few fenders designed specifically for fat bikes that is actually shipping, D.FENDER boasts all of the benefits of similar designs. The minimal design provides just enough spray coverage to keep your fork seals, lower headset, and eyes/glasses/goggles clean, but adds hardly any weight and easy attaches to the fork.

Designed and developed by Jarrod Bunk of City Cycle Supply, D.FENDER is laser cut from temperature resistant Lexan plastic and fit specifically for the RockShox Bluto suspension fork. After beginning testing in July of this year, the fender is finally shipping to customers after 11 revisions in the design. According to Jarrod, the made in the USA aspect is important for all of the D.FENDER products so it took some time to find someone to cut and screen print the fenders locally.

As the original D.FENDER are rolling off the production line and shipping to customers, Jarrod is also introducing two more fenders that should keep the rigid fat bike riders clean and happy…

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How To Build A NAHBS Bike – Part 1: Starting The Process Of A Custom Bike

Matter-Cycles-Benefat-Front-Side-2_1024x1024

Bikes shown at the North American Handbuilt Bicycle Show are objects worthy of drool. For years, I have seen the art that passes through those halls, and dreamt of someday owning one of these rolling masterpeices. The most impressive are the bikes that can hold their own for finish quality, yet you know are going to be ridden hard once the owner takes it from the show hall.

A few months back, we covered new builder Matter Cycles. After striking up a conversation with the owner, Collin, he mentioned that he would be showing his bikes at NAHBS this year. When writing the original story on them, I was very impressed with the BeneFat, Matter’s take on a fat bike. The 420mm chainstay length is the shortest I have seen on any fat bike, and I was looking for a trail-oriented fattie. A Surly Ice Cream Truck is a part of my stable for winter fat bike riding, but I wanted more of a dirt-oriented fat bike. You know, long, slack and low for ripping the trail.

Most NAHBS show bikes are actually owned by the builder’s customers. Most small builders don’t have the resources to build show-specific bikes, and they work with their customers to show off some of their best work. In this series, we will be following the entire process of building a Matter BeneFat, custom for me, and crafted as a show peice for the show. Here’s how it starts…

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Carry Everything with the new Salsa Anything Cage HD

Anything_Cage_HD_smokemachine

All photos c. Salsa

To many, the new Salsa Anything Cage HD probably doesn’t look like much, but to a seasoned bikepacker, it looks like options. Options to carry just about anything on your journey from small stuff sacks to Nalgene bottles and more. While the original Anything cage was a favorite among adventure cyclists, when it came to the new design Salsa wanted to make something that was more durable and even more versatile.

Passing on the traditional metal construction of the original, the Anything HD opts for injection-molded impact resistant nylon. After several designs were tried out through 3D printing, the final design emerged from the mist…

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One Ride Review: Trek Farley Fat Bike makes it easy to go big

2014 Trek Farley fat bike ride review and actual weights

While Zach and Tim are seasoned fat bike riders, I was uninitiated. So, on a short trip to Ohio to do a little long term editorial planning, I borrowed a Trek Farley from the local shop and Zach planned a ride.

Being a basically all-29er-all-the-time (with suspension) type mountain biker, this would be quite a different experience for me. Or so I thought. Turns out, it was just like mountain biking because, well, it is. Only with ridiculous amounts of traction and the ability to blow through soft, wet sections and stream crossings as though they weren’t even there. Yaaay Fat Bikes.

Now, about the Trek specifically. Without riding other fat bikes for comparison, all I can say about the Farley is they seemed to have nailed it. If there’s supposed to be a learning curve with fat bikes, there was none here. It rode great, handled great and, other than letting a stupid 1mm thorn force a pit stop, did everything a good mountain bike should do…

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Found: Mongoose BMaX – the Mutant WalMart Offspring of BMX and Fat Bikes?

Mongoose BMaX fat bike bmx  (3)From the same company that brought you the Beast fat bike and the smaller, yet somehow better equipped 20″ Massif fat bike, we present the BMaX. Part BMX, part fat bike, all bizarre. Truthfully though, as far as entry level BMX bikes for kids go, it does look pretty fun. Built with 20″ wheels wrapped in 4.25″ wide rubber, if junior can’t turn the pedals at least the bike will turn some heads…

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Turnagain Cures Cold Weather Blues with new ETR Seal Kit for RockShox Bluto Fat Bike Forks

Turnagain_ETR_Seal_Bluto_Release_P1

Having just finished our review on the RockShox Bluto suspension fork, Tim and I both agree that the fork is a good thing for fat bikes. Not so good though? The potential for issues when ridden below freezing. Officially, RockShox tells us that the fork will perform optimally from 0° C (32° F) to 38° C (100° F). Between 32° and 10° F, the fork’s performance will begin to degrade, and using the fork under 10° F is not recommended. Considering most of us tend to ride our fat bikes during the winter, this could be seen as a bit of an issue.

Coincidentally, just days after posting our review Turnagain Components has stepped up with an answer. After months of both lab and real world testing, Turnagain is revealing their new Extended Temperature Range (ETR) seal kit which seems to be the answer to our Bluto prayers. More than just a cold weather kit, the ETR seals are designed to work in a wider range of temperatures than the originals. That means even after the upgrade the fork should work just as well during the hottest summer months as the coldest in winter.

Available as standard equipment on their sister brand Borealis bikes, or as an aftermarket upgrade, Turnagain has Bluto’s back…

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Review: Rockshox’s Bluto RL Fat Bike Suspension Fork & What It Means for Riders

Bluto-Odia

The Rockshox Bluto changed the game for fat bikes. Just like the 29ers that heralded before, it took the release of a major brand’s suspension fork to start to give the idea traction (pun intended) in the minds of consumers. Many of the early adopters of the fat bike movement were polarized on the need for suspension when you already have a 4″ tire at 8psi being able to take the majority of shock before it is transmitted to the rider.

Interestingly, the same brand that brought us the Reba, propelling 29ers into mainstream, also has brought us the Bluto, doing the same for fat bikes. SRAM remains one of the most flexible companies in the business, most likely to be the early adopter of new technology. Simply because of this business strategy of working closer together with their OEM customers to be on the front of new trends, they often lead and let the others follow. These risks may not always pay off, but when they do, customers take notice.

Now that the Rockshox Bluto has been on the market for a season, and is entering the first bit of snow use, we discuss our thoughts on the use and application of a product that has changed where the tracks of fat tires go.

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