Commuting on a pugs...

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  • 09-12-2008
    mdplayer
    Commuting on a pugs...
    I originally posted this over on the Surly forums, but figured if there was anyone who really commuted and used the Pugs in the sloppy conditions I am asking about, it would be the folks hanging out in the Alaska forum.

    Ok, quick question as winter time is slowly approaching here in New England. Before I know it, there will be 6 feet of snow on the ground (gosh I hope not) and winter will be in full swing, so I am trying to get everything lined up and built up before that time. My question is for you commuters with pugs. I know and understand them working well in the snow (duh!! that is why I bought it) but more curious about riding it on the road. Let me explain.

    I recently took a new job which will extend my commute from 1.5 miles to 17 miles. My plan would be to take a regular road bike in just cold weather when there is no slop on the road. Second choice would be to run an XC bike with either knobbies or studs when just wet or icey, and then for the snowy days, which we will get a bunch of, the pugs.

    My questions are 1) tire wear. SelfPropelledDevo said that tire wear wasn't an issue on the road, but I am just confirming that here. I am just concerned that riding 34 miles round trip will wear them out. Then again, I would rather pay the money for new tires than have to be stuck in a car for that.
    2) What about fenders?? I notice in mud and such, those Endomorphs throw a lot of mud up at me and would just assume it would be the same for snow, slush and general road slop. Any one actually use fenders or am I just thinking too much about it??

    Thanks in advance for the help..
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  • 09-12-2008
    Big Karma
    I commute on my Pugsley, but only in snowy conditions. I've found that Endomorphs are fun to ride on dirt, snow, etc., but feel very awkward when cornering on dry pavement. They squirm a lot.

    They're made of rubber, so tire wear will be worse on pavement, as it is with any tire. I doubt it would be a big factor, though, and replacing your tires once a year or so is still cheaper than gassing up your car.

    I've never seen fenders on a Pugsley, but I'm sure someone has rigged some up and tried them. Clip-on models would help, but might not be wide enough to really do much good. I recommend a studded bike for most of your icy/sloppy conditions, and the Pugs for fresh and packed snow.
  • 09-13-2008
    dylankentch
    The majority of my Anchorage commuting has been on Nokian 296 studs, which are awesome. For years though, my brother rode 26x1.5 slicks and also had no problem. I echo the advice already given, but no matter what you do, it seems like with your quiver of bikes you'll be just fine.

    I recommend license plates and coroplast for making big fenders. (Coroplast is what political yard signs are made out of.) License plates are super wide and malleable, and you get your safety factor by having reflective fenders. Coroplast can be cut and zip tied to fit your bike exactly. What would be really fine would be a chainguard that protected your chain from everything that big back Endo kicks up.
  • 09-14-2008
    thirstywork
    I have set up Fatbacks with clip on rear fenders and downtube fenders and it works just fine. The round profile of the tire throws the water off the center. If you run high enough pressure in the Endo's, they are ok on pavement, but not great.
  • 09-18-2008
    Nanuq
    I've commuted for years on Nokian 296s and they're about perfect. On fresh snow mornings my Pugs is great. You won't be going fast enough in the new/deep snow to worry much about throwing it up your backside. You'll get some accumulation around the bottom bracket.

    One thing to consider: you gotta air down the Endos to make them track right in soft snow, and that makes them hard to push along on pavement, and will increase the wear rate.

    So you'll want to stick with the Pugs and low(er) pressure for fresh snow mornings, and the studs for after it gets packed down.

    (or bring along a pump and spend an hour airing the Endos back up before the ride home)
  • 09-18-2008
    mdplayer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Nanuq
    I've commuted for years on Nokian 296s and they're about perfect. On fresh snow mornings my Pugs is great. You won't be going fast enough in the new/deep snow to worry much about throwing it up your backside. You'll get some accumulation around the bottom bracket.

    One thing to consider: you gotta air down the Endos to make them track right in soft snow, and that makes them hard to push along on pavement, and will increase the wear rate.

    So you'll want to stick with the Pugs and low(er) pressure for fresh snow mornings, and the studs for after it gets packed down.

    (or bring along a pump and spend an hour airing the Endos back up before the ride home)

    All good points. Never thought about the airing down and the wear rate because of that. Plus the not thowing fresh snow up. I just assumed that is all I would actually use the Pugs for, the fresh snow days...

    Thanks all for the advice.
  • 09-21-2008
    Bearbait
    Nanuq - Get a topeak mountain morph pump. They are awesome for endomorph's.