2015 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

Around Interbike time last year, Chris Chance popped back onto the scene with a comeback announcement. Then, in January, he relaunched the Yo Eddy on Kickstarter, raising more than enough funds to roll back into production. Now, we’ve got your first look at what his most popular model’s renaissance looks like and why he’s back in the game.

“Whatever we did back in the day created a ripple,” Chance said. “Turns out there’s still a ripple. And I found that I still had a passion for building bikes.”

“The first thing we’re offering is the one model people have been asking for the most. That’s the Yo Eddy, and had it never gone away, this is what it would be like today. Modern geometry and features, but it still feels like a Yo Eddy, which is to say it really connects your body to the bike. People called it telepathic handling.”

2015 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

It’s a steel frame, using custom drawn True Temper tubing. And they’re waiting on that tubing and finishing a bit of tooling so they can get production started. Chance says things will be up and running in a few weeks.

2015 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

The frames will be offered for both 650B (red) and 29er (day-glow yellow) models, with both frames being very similar to each other.

2015 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

That includes a shared 433mm chainstay measurement, which forces the 29er to lose the chainstay bridge and tucks its rear wheel up very, very close to the seat tube. That probably limits the 29er to a 1x drivetrain only since there’s virtually no room for a front derailleur clamp.

2015 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

Retail will be about $1,700. Geometry is built around a 12mm fork and has internal dropper post cable port on the seat tube, so it’s made to rock. $500 for the fork, which they call a Yo Eddy design since they were the first to make a fork like that; others doing it nowadays call it a segmented fork. It uses 1″ straight chromoly tubes for legs.

2015 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance 2015 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

Retro, hand drawn graphics adorn the new model as a nod to its past. Speaking of which…

1991 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

This purple Yo Eddy is from 1991.

1991 Fat Chance Yo Eddy steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

It had fatter seat stays than most steel bikes of its day, a trait that carries over to the 2015 edition, too. It also had a larger diameter down tube than its predecessor…

1986 Fat Chance Wicked steel hardtail mountain bike by Chris Chance

…the Fat Chance Wicked. This black one is from 1986, so it was quite evolved from the first models Chance built starting in ’82.

So, what does the future hold?

“We’ve got plans for a fat bike, cyclocross bike, gravel bike and Slim Chance road bike,” Chance told us. “We’re also working with David Earlo at Sotto Group, who’s helped Yeti with some of their bikes, to develop a carbon full suspension mountain bike. No word on whether it’ll carry on the Shockabilly name.”

FatChanceBicycles.com

19 COMMENTS

  1. I really hate to say this, but…kinda reminds me of the third Crocodile Dundee movie in 2001, coming out an after an inexplicably long gap following the first two in the 1980’s. With all of the compelling steel hardtails out there now (think REEB, Spot Brand, Niner (ROS and SIR 9’s), Chromag, Canfield, etc.) I think that, apart from the nostalgia factor, this is going to be a really, really hard sell, at any price. But $1700…? Wow, I don’t know.

  2. I’d be interested int a shock a billy. Not so interested in the yo. Wow. I typed that and I didn’t burst into flames.

  3. All [steel bikes] are not created equal. Fat Chance is a favorite for a thousand reasons, and I can’t wait to see what they do moving forward. With Chris’s knowledge & experience, they won’t need to rely on nostalgia for long. Most excellent news out of the show yet.

  4. The name didn’t prevent Fat from going bankrupt back in the days. I’m pretty sure most kickstarter backers were driven by nostalgia but a successful company cannot rely on one single kickstarter. They need a way to attract new and loyal customers and they’d better offer something other don’t as there is already countless of nice bikes available on the market.

    That 29er looks very limited to dry use with such a small rear clearance.

  5. There’s also the fact that the market has changed. There’s customers who buy full custom frames, but there’s considerably less room in the market for boutique low production makers (at custom prices) due to the fact that MTB is now a mainstay of many large production brands, including those that produce framesets, and is no longer a fringe niche.

  6. Worth adding that Chris has actually said “yes chainstays are prototype and the production frame will have a custom drawn longer chainstay” about the 29er frame. Check the radavist for details.

  7. If the 29er can handle 3.0 tiers on 45mm wide rims he may have something. If not, seems like a tough sell. I love the fact he got back into the game and wish him well. I will be looking for his fatbike frame, and if that does come to fruition, please make sure it can handle the fattest wheel/tire combo.

  8. @ Eric.nm totally with you on this. Radical nostalg aside, there are so many other better options out there.

    @ haromania looking for a new 29er myself… and the requirement is 3.0 tire or bust!!

  9. I look the look of the red bike, but is that a Tharsis stem on there? Don’t get me wrong, I love the Tharsis, in fact I own one, but it looks kind of strange on a rigid steel bike.

    Also – if my math is right, frame and fork will run you $2300 (that’s about $5000 Canadian these days), I understand nostalgia, but I also understand Titanium, know what I’m saying?

  10. $1700 is typical custom steel. Look @ IF, Seven, Breadwinner, etc.

    He built some of the best bikes back in “the day”. If he still has that magic, these will be worth every penny.

  11. I´m not stupid/rich enough to buy one of these, but I rather buy one of these real steel frames, with an actual steel background, than one of the new uber expensive steel bike, which are made of steel for the plain and simple reason than still is the easiest to work with, but aluminium titanium and carbon are way better and cheaper… no thank you. This is the best steel frame i can think of really.

    Hope gary klein comes back too.

  12. if I were planning on getting a steel hardtail, I’d be looking at Igelheart or Wojcik. they’ve remained in the game all these years.

  13. These are mean-looking bikes. I doubt they ride that much differently than other steel bikes, but the welds look great and the lines are classy. I am also glad they stuck with external cable routing and what looks like a threaded BB.

  14. Segmented forks have been around since the old Raleigh 3 speeds, or longer. However, the Raleigh 3 speed had the fork blades mitered to fit the crown segments, instead of the other way around… which seems like a more durable method of construction, in my opinion.

  15. Well, 20 years ago there was virtually only steel. Today, we have many different materials and construction methods. Hence the vast majority of bikes is lighter and better built. Except for sentimental reasons, I see no reason to turn to these.

  16. I am the owner of 10th Anniversary Fat number 27. It still hits the dirt regularly and is always the belle of the ball. Back in the day, our shop sold countless Slims, Wickeds and Yo-Eddys. I can honestly say that everyone I know that has one will never give it up. Fat Chance bikes have a ride quality that is unique and unsurpassed and a build quality greater than the sum of their parts. I fully expect that the new Fats will be just as gnarly, beautiful and as highly sought after as their predecessors. Get one while you can and unless you have the cash in your pocket, don’t risk a test ride. Unrequited love really sucks!

What do you think?