Forgive me, for I am about to sin...OT "fat" road content- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Forgive me, for I am about to sin...OT "fat" road content

    Preamble: I probably shouldn't be posting this here because firstly the bike is a 29er, and secondly this is road use. However it is basically the same ride I did about 2 years ago on my 907 with Black Floyds http://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/can...ke-778052.html

    So hopefully you'll forgive me intruding this into the fatbike forum.My excuse is that I think that what works for mtbs might also work for a roadbike, and seeing as there are so many people here who like to experiment, they may like to see it.

    For the last few months I've been riding around on my 29er setup as a roadbike with 2.35" Big Apple tyres. Seeing as I'm too thick to know how to operate gears, it's singlespeed (of course).

    On our chopped up roads it's really comfortable on short rides of a few hours.

    The next question was if it would be any good on a long ride, like a tour. Was there too much drag from the fat tyres? I hadn't noticed any, but how to prove it to myself?

    Simple, take it for a not so short ride. So starting at sea level from Dingwall in the Highlands of Scotland.





    Turn off after Alness towards the climb up the Struie over the first range






    Refuel at Bonar Bridge (sea level)






    At this point it warmed up and the first bit of that Strath (valley) is nice and easy





    But somehow a few climbs got slipped in - not surprising since I was crossing the spine of Scotland






    I accidentally stumbled upon the HQ of the Scottish Liberation Army (we're in the midst of an independence referendum, a bloodless revolution)





    Always glad to see the sign at Ledmore Junction, almost halfway.





    but a look along the road promises some grief and consideration of the value of gears




    There's some attractive lumps of scenery









    Lunch at Ardmair (back down to sea level) - well 2 lunches, I was feeling a bit peckish by here. Two lunches at Ardmair is getting to be a habit.






    Then there's some stiff climbs to Ullapool and sea level again, but it's not too far from Ardmair, so there's always the prospect of the best fish and chips in Scotland.






    Was still feeling frisky so resisted the temptations of Ullapool. Always like to stop to admire this view, maybe especially as there's a steep climb coming up.






    And then there's Braemore. For the non Scots, that translates as f*******g big hill. It certainly is that on a singlespeed, cue more contemplation of the value of gears. After getting up that I couldn't be bothered leaning the bike against something and trying to get a nice view shot, so I took this pic to remind me about the possible value of gears.






    Once over Braemore the climbs are gentle so no problem, the spine has been crossed again, and soon enough my favourite mountain pops into view (Ben Wyvis)






    And from there it's dead easy. Another 15 miles to at Garve for a desperation feed and then only 15 miles to home. I truly needed that last feed.

    Basically the ride comes down to a coast to coast and back, crossing 4 mountain ranges from sea level. The only one I'd rate as tough is the stretch from Ledmore Junction to Ullapool. And if I can do it in my decrepit state, anyone can.

    I approached this as a one day tour, with the intention of keeping a touring pace, so racing whippets are welcome to disagree with my conclusions. (I had the speedo turned down so I could only see it when I turned it up to check distances.)

    No hurry, and a stop every hour to drink and eat half a Snickers bar. Plus a few longer stops to have breakfast, double lunch, and my final desperation snack close to home.

    Oh, and stops for over 120 photos which sometimes may have coincided with oxygen deprivation when I got overexcited on a hill.

    So there it is, fat tyres do work for roadbikes.

    Total distance? Slightly over 120 miles, bike was geared at 67".

    So now you have a fatbike, don't neglect your 29er.

    Stick fat slicks on your 29er and you have a roadbike that can ride over all the worst the road can throw at you - potholes, ruts, cattle grids, and all. Plus you can safely go poking up any interesting trails you see because you're not going to wreck a set of flimsy road rims. That's a win/win.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 5736' Highlands, Scotland

  2. #2
    rth009
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    Rad trip.

    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    [I]
    I accidentally stumbled upon the HQ of the Scottish Liberation Army (we're in the midst of an independence referendum, a bloodless revolution)
    This whole independence movement is fascinating to me. Which side are you on?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by rth009 View Post
    ...This whole independence movement is fascinating to me. Which side are you on?
    Independence.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 5736' Highlands, Scotland

  4. #4
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    VB; Thanks for posting your ride. If you had 'properly' posted this elsewhere, you know we would have been irate upon discovery.

    BTW, will be keeping an eye out for the happenings on the 18th. Courage, lad, courage! Read about the polls.

  5. #5
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    Beautiful!

  6. #6
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    Great thread, great adventure. Thanks for sharing.

    Your bike reminds me of mine. 50mm Big Apples (29"/700) fixed gear.

    Forgive me, for I am about to sin...OT "fat" road content-hercules-50-1024x756-.jpg

    I have been toying with the idea of building up a day tourer from a 29er MTB for when I need gears. Prolly go with Big Bens.

  7. #7
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    Looks like ya had an easier ride this time without the wind! Plus I'm sure the snickers bars helped tremendously. Always enjoy your ride reports.

    My favorite was; A Foolish Ride, Black Floyd Content
    I was getting a chill just reading it!
    It's all about the firecuts

  8. #8
    mtbr member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy74 View Post
    Looks like ya had an easier ride this time without the wind! Plus I'm sure the snickers bars helped tremendously. Always enjoy your ride reports.

    My favorite was; A Foolish Ride, Black Floyd Content
    I was getting a chill just reading it!
    I got through 6 Snickers bars this time, a couple of times I cheated and ate the whole bar. The good thing was having places open where I could eat. They all shut down in winter.

    I intend repeating it on the fatbike - probably early next year. Next time the fatbike will be single speed so I don't get myself knackered again with all that gear lever twiddling. Don't know how folk have the strength.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 5736' Highlands, Scotland

  9. #9
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    Yea, fat 'road' tires rock and roll!
    Though I'd recommend SuperMotos, they roll even better.

    Forgive me, for I am about to sin...OT "fat" road content-linbq5wnmzy.jpg
    That's me doing a 400 km brevet, average moving speed: 16.4 mp/h (26.4 km/h)

    Been doing up to 600, and would do more, but I've yet to find a saddle that would not wear holes in my arse in 400+ brevets.
    Last edited by Balor; 09-13-2014 at 08:20 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Balor View Post
    Yea, fat 'road' tires rock and roll!
    Though I'd recommend SuperMotos, they roll even better...
    They only had the SuperMotos in the 26" wheel size when I bought my Big Apples. Once I wear out the BAs, I'll be getting SuperMotos. Much lighter.

    As for saddles, once it goes over 100 miles I prefer my Brooks B73 - sublime.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 5736' Highlands, Scotland

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