New Fatbike

Discussion in 'Sports & Outdoor Adventure' started by Alobar, Aug 21, 2016.

  1. SiliconTi

    SiliconTi AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,629
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    The Pugsley is a sweet ride, but the Diamondbacks should work well for you, plus, with two, you can ride together. That is worth more.
     
    Alobar likes this.
  2. 2011etec

    2011etec Super Member

    Waiting to see the diabetes people .Will be asking for more blood tests because my dr is a quack and I'm hoping above hope that he,s wrong though I'm not holding out much hope.ITS certainly not the end of the world .
     
  3. Alobar

    Alobar Flight of the Cosmic Hippie. Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,065
    Location:
    SE Alaska
    Just keep in mind that a high carbohydrate diet (the modern grain and potato based diet) gets converted to sugar after we eat which the body must be dealt with. I was pre-diebetic until I ditched the carbs and replaced those calories with healthy fats and my blood work came back as normal which really puzzled my doctor who was pushing pharmaceuticals.
     
  4. Alobar

    Alobar Flight of the Cosmic Hippie. Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,065
    Location:
    SE Alaska
    Just got back a few days ago from a trip through the Yukon Territory into interior Alaska as far as Fairbanks with the camper. Was pretty cold at night for camping out with temps down to +15F, but daytime sun warmed up to the 40's. This summer I welded up a bike carrier that fits on the back of the camper that we can still get in and out of the camper without removing the bikes which worked really well. We biked every day with the dog, up dry riverbeds, along the beach at Kluane Lake in the Yukon, and up hiking trails that were void of people this time of the year. Auroras were out at night which is always a treat!
    Really like these off season trips a lot even with the cold. As they say up here, no such thing as bad weather, just piss poor clothing choices!
    CameraZOOM-20160929083758097.jpg CameraZOOM-20160929083839583.jpg
     
    DrumminDaddy likes this.
  5. zebra03

    zebra03 All Audio - NO BS

    Messages:
    9,921
    Location:
    West of Weedville
    That looks like so much fun !
     
    Alobar likes this.
  6. Alobar

    Alobar Flight of the Cosmic Hippie. Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,065
    Location:
    SE Alaska
    Thanks. They really are. I have owned mountain bikes for years but lately haven't been riding them as much due to our acquired dog gets to go everywhere with us and I won't run him down the shoulder of the highway. Having the fat bikes we get out there and go about anywhere that he likes to go due to the extra flotation that 4+ inch wide tires give. Lots of fun for him and us. He starts acting excited every time I get near that bike!
     
  7. MaxxVolume

    MaxxVolume Super Member

    Messages:
    3,217
    Those fatbikes are very impressive ! In addition to the recreational aspect, they would also make excellent emergency exit vehicles in any type of SHTF scenario, where full-size vehicles might not be practical.

    The following info is probably redundant to many of you, but if it helps one person....
    Re: gearing....gearing is measured in inches of forward travel per one complete revolution of the pedals. Get a gear chart and figure out your gears, from bottom to top. Make a small chart with your current gear numbers (in inches) and tape it to your handlebars. That way, you will learn exactly what a 60-inch gear feels like, a 75-inch gear, etc. You might want to custom-build a freewheel that better suits your likes and needs.

    As far as "granny gears" go, there IS a point of diminishing returns there, too....it`s generally thought that any gears lower than 27 inches are counter-productive, i.e., you`re expending more energy turning the pedals than if you were to just get off the bike and walk....
     
  8. Alobar

    Alobar Flight of the Cosmic Hippie. Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,065
    Location:
    SE Alaska
    They are truly something different. The more we use them the more places we are finding to go that I never would have considered on a mountain bike. Don't get me wrong, I wont be getting rid of my mtn bike but these big tire versions are very useful in this part of the world. As we were driving on our road trip last week we couldn't get 20 miles before seeing a place we wanted to go check out with the fat bikes. This time of the year there are lots of dried up stream beds that in the spring and summer bring down the thawed snow pack but dry up in the fall/winter. These dry stream beds as you can imagine go for miles. The one end of Kluane Lake in Canada is dried up lake bed from a seismic event 100+ years ago which raised the outlet end of this 25 mile long lake and made it the inlet. Could ride that for miles too, but wouldn't care to try it on any skinny tired bike!

    What is this??

    Yes, I have to agree. Actually I am finding that if I just stand up and peddle I really can get by without the super low gears. I don't seem to tax myself anymore than if I had lower gears by doing this and anything too steep for that it could be just easier to push the bike anyway no matter the gears.

    Probably now that we know about these bikes we will be getting Pugsleys or something similar in a year or so. We may make these Diamondbacks into winter bikes by putting studs in the tires. Kinda opens up a new world there as well!
     
  9. MaxxVolume

    MaxxVolume Super Member

    Messages:
    3,217
    The freewheel is the multi-gear cluster mounted to the rear wheel. Earlier (pre-1980) examples had bodies which threaded onto the hub, and cogs which were individually threaded onto the body. It was possible to replace the cogs with different ones, but it was a bit time-consuming. Around 1980, I believe it was Shimano that introduced the new cassette-type "Freehub", which rather than a threaded body, had a straight-splined body which allowed for a much faster gear swap by simply sliding the cogs off the body, and sliding new ones on. All the components to "roll your own" are readily available.

    Examples can be seen in this ad:
    https://www.amazon.com/Shimano-FH-6700-Ultegra-Freehub-Speed/dp/B003COB474
     
    Alobar likes this.
  10. Alobar

    Alobar Flight of the Cosmic Hippie. Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,065
    Location:
    SE Alaska
    As far as the gearing being too high on these bikes, the more I ride them the more I am thinking this may not be entirely true. I never was much of a stand up rider, always preferring lower gears to standing up on the peddles. Since getting the fat bikes I am finding just how efficient standing up can be. I tend to climb faster than I did sitting down with my low gears on the mtn bike, plus while standing I can feel added down stroke from my arms pulling down on the handlebars. If I focus on this aspect, and maximize it I find I have plenty of "low end" for most hills. I could still use a few lower gears I think for those hills that exceed my abilities, but maybe I could achieve this by replacing the rear "cassette" gears with larger ones. Right now it has a Shimano 7 speed sprocket cassette and I wonder if any of their 7 speed cassettes will work? I could get a few extra teeth I think I would be golden with these bikes. The front sprocket is a no-name brand with a completely different setup where nothing short of replacing the entire crank assembly would work (according to a bike shop in Fairbanks).
     
  11. MaxxVolume

    MaxxVolume Super Member

    Messages:
    3,217
    Once again....get yourself a gearing chart, then count the teeth on the front and rear sprockets (smallest chainring, and largest freewheel cog), cross-reference those numbers with your chart, and see what the results are. Your goal is to have a bottom gear of right around 27 inches. Anything less than that would be shorter than a normal walking stride, and therefore counterproductive.
     
  12. Alobar

    Alobar Flight of the Cosmic Hippie. Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,065
    Location:
    SE Alaska
    Missed out on some football today and went riding the fatbikes on an old logging road that has a packed snowmobile trail on it. The snow pack is around 3 feet settled out but the snowmobile trail was hard enough to support the fatbikes. Was a great workout for us 60 somethings! :)Here are a few shots..
    20170205_134031.jpg 20170205_134645.jpg 20170205_133928.jpg
     
    Jailtime likes this.
  13. Jailtime

    Jailtime Standin' on a corner

    Messages:
    10,941
    Location:
    Velva ND
    Have you tried bikepacking, fat bikes seem to lend themselves well to that task. I've been thinking about getting geared up to go on a 4 day adventure on the Maah Daah Hey trail here in North Dakota.

    Here's mine, Surly Ice Cream Truck I built a few months ago.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Jailtime

    Jailtime Standin' on a corner

    Messages:
    10,941
    Location:
    Velva ND
    I'd think a Shimano MegaRange 14-34T would work for you. https://www.amazon.com/Shimano-MF-TZ31-Tourney-Freewheel-14-34T/dp/B003RLNOKC. I'm assuming that bike has a freewheel, and not a cassette. But that's still not a very low climbing gear, I run a 28T front with an 11-46T cassette. It's about as low as I would ever want/need.

    If you have a Surly dealer near by, you might ask if they have any Pugsley frame/rim combos left, I've seen them for $389. You would need to be comfortable with selecting all your parts and building the bike to go that route though.
     
    Alobar likes this.
  15. Alobar

    Alobar Flight of the Cosmic Hippie. Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,065
    Location:
    SE Alaska
    Thanks for the info on the mega range, will look into it. I am fairly ignorant on bicycle drive train parts and am not sure what the difference is between a cassette and freewheel. I assume the cassette has all the sprockets held together somehow but am not sure what to look for. My diamondback has 7 rear sprockets and one 40 tooth front. It would be a much improved bike if I could reduce the gear ratio a couple of speeds. Right now we end up pushing the bikes up more than mild inclines, and the trails, beaches, dry riverbeds we never really get out of low gear.

    We have a small bike shop here in my town and I test rode a Surly Pugsley, was a great bike, fit me like a glove, and geared for anything. The $1200 on sale price was more than what we wanted to pay as we were not sure if fat bikes were going to be our thing. Then we were in Juneau and I was shopping at Costco and saw these Diamondbacks for cheap. They actually seemed pretty good (light weight) for under 400 bucks so I bought his and hers but I am finding out it isn't a simple matter to upgrade the drive sprockets etc on these fat bikes due to the tight chain clearances and no name crank and non upgradable front sprocket. Anyway, I look at them as a gateway bike and could probably sell them because of the popularity these have here.

    I might look into just the Surly frame and wheels here when they open up in a few months.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2017
  16. sKiZo

    sKiZo Hates received: 8641 Subscriber

    The ultimate "granny gear" ride ... I cheat with an eBike.

    [​IMG]

    These are perfect for us physically challenged riders. I had to park my mountain bike a couple years back because my knees couldn't take the punishment anymore. Best of both worlds here, as I can peddle on the level trails, and use the power assist on the hills and crossing intersections. I can go maybe 100 miles on a charge doing it like that, as half the time I don't even have the assist enabled, and even then, only on the low settings unless I run into one serious grade.

    Dirty little secret ... I ignore all those "no motorized vehicles" signs on the local trails. Legally even. The ADA (section 11) says these qualify as "mobility assistance devices" if you have a disability. Being a 30% disabled vet, I qualify, but ... interesting thing is, the same law says they can't ask you for proof, so pretty much anyone could ride one of these pretty much wherever they wanted to.

    One drawback I suppose would be the weight. What with the hub motor and battery and all, we're talking around 60 pounds. Trade off there, the extra inertia keeps you rolling longer when you let off the peddles ... which is where the disc brakes can come in real handy. DO expect to have to replace the pads more often.

    PS ... fat bikes is ALL I see up here in cold country this time of year. The big ol' knobbies grip the trails nicely long as it ain't glare ice.

    The RadRover wasn't much more than what you're talking for the Pugsley. Free shipping to the lower 48 helped a lot ... hate to think what it'd cost up to your neck of the tundra ...
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2017
  17. Jailtime

    Jailtime Standin' on a corner

    Messages:
    10,941
    Location:
    Velva ND
    Here's a link that shows what a cassette looks like - http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/freehub-service#article-section-1. The cassette is basically just a pack of cogs and spacers that slide on to the splined driver body, all held in place with a thin locking ring. The freewheel has all the guts self contained, pawls and bearings are all in the one unit. That unit just threads on to the hub.

    Looks like your Diamondback has a square taper crank, it's near impossible to find a single sprocket crank in that format. Doubles and triples are easy to find, but then you need a front derailleur/shifter, and will likely run into chain clearance issues.

    Take a look at the Surly Wednesday when you get a chance. It will accept up to 4.6" rear tire, and it has more modern standards than the Pugs. There's lots of nice fatbikes out there these days, maybe a local shop will be willing to deal with summer coming around soon?
     
    Alobar likes this.
  18. sKiZo

    sKiZo Hates received: 8641 Subscriber

    I swear ... you old timers ... <G>

    Same thing here though. Even at six feet, my seat is set higher than I'm comfortable with for starting and stopping, but that's a trade off for limited range of motion on the fake knee. On the bright side, that already seems to be loosening up some with the miles, and I "pre-tune" it with a couple minutes on the Schwinn AirDyne before riding.

    Truth be told, it's all what you're used to as well. I'm told that the seat is pretty much where it SHOULD be anyway, just higher than I'd grown accustomed to. I have a slight break forward in the knee at full stroke that prevents hyper extension, and that leaves me just enough room at full flex to keep peddling without lifting up off the seat once I warm up.
     
  19. sKiZo

    sKiZo Hates received: 8641 Subscriber

    PS ... are you SURE you're hitting all the gears? The low gear should be just about effortless on flat take off, even with a seven gear cassette with a single hub sprocket. New bikes especially will stretch the control cables significantly in the first few miles. Mine was only going down to third until I adjusted the derailleurs and cable properly. Here's a real nice video that walks you through the basics. Same holds true for most any shift system.

     
  20. Alobar

    Alobar Flight of the Cosmic Hippie. Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,065
    Location:
    SE Alaska
    What no dynamic breaking? :D

    That thing is way cool! I can think of so many places to go with something like that!

    So, does the motor drive the wheel separate from the chain or is it coupled with the peddles and thus gear changes? I see lots of sprockets on that rig..

    Oh yeah. Biggest issue is the front is rather big 40 tooth. It starts out fine, but hit a grade and you are immediately standing up to get power strokes, but after a while of that and I am off the bike and pushing it the rest of the way up the hill. The rear is clearly on the largest one, so no lower gearing available. I would glad to trade 3 or 4 of the higher gears for lower ones, considering the type of riding I do with these, speed isn't really something I need..
     

Share This Page