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  1. #1
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    My First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)

    After what seemed like months of waiting to be able to afford the fat bike of my dreams, I picked her up this past Saturday. I got a wicked deal on her from my LBS that I couldn't refuse while I was in there the week before having my Salsa Ti 29'er worked on. I wasn't there to buy a bike that day. The owner knew that and really wanted to move this leftover XL sized bike he had in the shop window for months.

    I took her out Monday night after work during a rain storm for a 12 mile jaunt around Watchaug Pond in the Burlingame Management area in Charlestown, RI. Having never ridden a fat bike on anything but pavement around my LBS, I wasn't sure what to expect. My initial thoughts were just how amazingly light the bike was. It accelerates effortlessly. I've got a steep hill to climb right at the start of my ride and it climbed it well, however I did spin out once but managed to make it up OK. It was raining so that's to be expected.

    After riding for a half hour, I realized that I was doing better going over obstacles in my way on the single track than on my 29'er and that I would just plow over things vs picking a careful line as I typically do. Unlike my hard tail 29'er, my butt seemed to stay planted more firmly on the saddle and not bounce up as I hit the rough stuff I'm guessing due to the tires absorbing the shock of the things I hit.

    I couldn't handle the bike as well my 29'er in some of the technical stuff that was too big to plow over. I think that's due to the Fatboy being an XL and the Salsa being a Large. The Fatboy feels much longer to me and not as maneuverable on tight turns. I think the more I ride it, the easier it will get as I just need to get used to it. I'm 6'1" 225lbs so I think I could have gone either way (XL vs Large) but chose the XL. I hope I made the right decision. I think I did.

    It didn't stop as well as the XTR brakes on my Salsa with Ice rotors. I'm guessing that's due to them not being broken in yet? I don't like the brake levers as much as my XTR's. If I hit the lever with the back of my hand while riding, they push away from the handlebars which seems weird. I'd like them to stay put.

    There is about a mile of pavement on this ride down a long hill. Typically I pedal hard down it. I noticed that while pedaling hard on the fat bike, there was an up and down undulation of the whole bike due to the large squishy tires I'm guessing. It took me a second to figure out what was up then it hit me.

    Overall, I had a blast and posted my fastest time on this route ever. I don't know if it was the bike or if I rode harder due to being excited about having the new bike. Either way, I had a blast and I can't wait to ride it again this week.



    I snapped a bunch of photos of her the day I took her home...

    My First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2944.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2945.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2946.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2950.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2951.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2953.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2954.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2956.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2961.jpgMy First Ride on a Fatbike (Specialized Fatboy SL)-img_2964.jpg

  2. #2
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    Nice looking bike! You're going to have many more adventures with her.

  3. #3
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    Yes, that paint color is very classy on the SL. I got a large pea soup green one cuz the price was a steal. I do think you got the right size, because I'm 5'-11 and wonder if I really need the XL. The Fatboys do run a bit small. Riding fat takes a little getting used to, and I'm now doing 3-4 fat rides, then 3-4 FS29er rides in a row, instead of alternating back and forth all the time. Congrats and enjoy!

  4. #4
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    Stunning rig! Enjoy...

  5. #5
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    Thanks guys for the kind words...

    I rode it again last night in dry conditions and was utterly amazed at what I was able to climb. I easily made it up many climbs that stymied me on my 29er. This bike is so much fun to ride. On a ride where I typically ride a mix of technical trail, flowing single track, dirt roads, and a bit a pavement (between trails) I chose to stick to all technical riding as that's where I have the most fun on this rig...

  6. #6
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    Nice SL! Enjoy it and the RI dirt. You will be even more amazed when the snow flies again and a whole other world opens up with your new steed.
    17 Moto Ti cross
    14 GT Zaskar 9r
    15 Moto Night Train
    08 BMC Trailfox
    08 Bad Boy Ultra
    06 Cannondale Rush
    99 GT XCR

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by NH Mtbiker View Post
    Nice SL! Enjoy it and the RI dirt. You will be even more amazed when the snow flies again and a whole other world opens up with your new steed.
    Thanks!

    I'll be riding it in NH at Great Glen Trails the last week of July for their weekly time trials series. It's a fun yet hard short ride. Riding at sea level at home, your mountains up there really give me a challenge.

  8. #8
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    Right on...we've got a few hills here.
    Is this the series you mentioned?
    M & M Assurance Summer Mountain Bike Series | Great Glen Trails

    Looks like fun on a fat bike!
    17 Moto Ti cross
    14 GT Zaskar 9r
    15 Moto Night Train
    08 BMC Trailfox
    08 Bad Boy Ultra
    06 Cannondale Rush
    99 GT XCR

  9. #9
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    That loop around Watchaug is fun on the fatbike. Its close enough to hit east beach and have a little bit of everything in one ride.

    Bike looks awesome. Even matches your truck.

  10. #10
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    Beautiful bike. I attribute the liteness in part to the fully rigid feeling. I had same feeling in my less light fatBoy What do you think?

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