Is this heaven? No, it's Illinois... (Moonlander, Mukluk, Necromancer, Pugsley)- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Is this heaven? No, it's Illinois... (Moonlander, Mukluk, Necromancer, Pugsley)

    I'll have more details to post later this week, but suffice it to say I've been to Fat Bike Heaven, with the Faturday ride today at North Central Cyclery Bikes, Parts, Repair, Bicycle Shop

    First, a few pics of the bikes on the floor for sale:

    Mukluks? Suuuuuuure.

    P1000556
    Pugsleys? Suuuuuuuure.

    P1000555
    Wait--did you say Moonlanders? Yep.

    P1000557

    They've got 'em in stock, on the floor. I rode Pugsleys, Mukluk 2s and 3s, and Moonlanders back to back to back to back. My thoughts:

    Pugsley v. Muk 3:
    Pugs has potential for interchangeable wheels.
    Muk has corrosion proof aluminum frame.
    Geometry is very different--Pugs geometry is more MTB; Muk geometry is more upright.
    Weight between Pugs and Muk 3 is not that huge of a difference.

    Muk 2 v. Muk 3:
    Muk 2 is noticeably lighter and more flickable, if a fat bike can be flickable.

    Moonlander:
    I was shocked to see that they have a full size run of Moonlanders, in stock, built and ready to roll. The Moonlander weighs less than a Pugsley--rather amazingly. The shifters are ohhh so schweet. Clownshoes are reedonkulous...and the BFLs on Clownshoes frankly make a lot more sense than the BFL/Rolling Darryls I have on my Muk 2. I was concerned about the Q-factor, seeing the bike for the first time, but really--it's not an issue. Frankly, you get a bigger change in Q-factor going from shoes to winter boots than you do going from a Pugsley to a Moonlander. The offset frame is freaky looking...but you don't feel it at all when riding. Ride quality is similar to a Pugs, as is the geometry's "feel".

    Were I doing it again, I'd have to think long and hard about getting a Moonlander over a Muk 2. Seriously long and hard. That'd be a tough call. Rode a few bikes with Nates...and loved 'em. Tons of traction--definitely the ticket for anything muddy/soupy, and potentially the ticket for slush as well.

    I have a ton of pics on Flickr here:

    2011 12.10 Faturday Bike - a set on Flickr

    But here are a few select ones to preview:


    Untitled


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    Seriously, Moonlanders are light:

    Untitled


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    Untitled

    Props to Hand of Midas' crazy riding style.

  2. #2
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    Riding was on a lot of divergent surfaces--although most pics are in the woods by the parking lot. The cranks on the newer Pugs are nice. Not as nice as the E-13s on my Muk 2, but nice. I've really gotta say, the SD-7 brake levers on Pugs and Moonlanders are far superior to the levers on Muks. It's a $20 upgrade, and well worth it. The thumb shifters on the Moonlanders are supremely nice. Light, very smooth action, positive detents...I can't say enough good things about them. Might not be the hot setup under pogies (my grip shifters are still beloved), but they're pretty darn nice.

    It was truly excellent to get to ride the bikes back to back, and to experience just how similar--and different--they can be. I was a bit scared of the Moonlander after just seeing pics and reading about it...but riding it was totally great. Very comfortable--for me, I'd get a Moonlander before I got a Pugsley. As an aside, there was a QBP rep out at the Faturday ride, and it was very cool seeing him out riding and sharing. He brought a bunch of demos with him that were most excellent, along with a ton of knowledge. The Salsa Bend 2 bars on the new Muks are very niiiiiice. I like them a lot. Not so much that I'd take my Loop bars off, but a lot nonetheless.

    Also, NCC had a built Muk 2 with XO rear derailleur, carbon fiber bars, Hope hydro brakes, etc...it was a pretty nice spec...had me thinking about eventual upgrades. It was also rocking' the Nates. One of the last few Muk 2s that I've seen available (it is a 15", and they still have a lonely 21" Muk 2 as well). Looked like a full run of Pugsleys and Moonlanders, and some Necromancers sprinkled in for good measure.

    Gotta run for now...taking my Muk out for a long, coooold night ride with my Frontage Roads frame bag and my www.theporcelainrocket.com booster rocket and top-tube bag:


    P1000559

  3. #3
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    Nice pics! Thanks

  4. #4
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    great stuff, thanks for sharing your thoughts and great pics
    2014 milage so far - 2,485
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  5. #5
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    Yes, thanks for sharing, it would be nice to see all of those fat bikes in one place.

  6. #6
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    Great Report;

    Thanks for sharing!!

  7. #7
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    If I did not preorder my Moonlander I would be making a road trip!

  8. #8
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    its nice you can test bikes in the USA, we dont have that luxury in the UK, i have owned 2 fat bikes and have a moonlander on its way soon, but i have NEVER seen another fat bike........how strange is that!
    2014 milage so far - 2,485
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  9. #9
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    Re: mukluk 2 bars

    Great report and pics!! Saw the photo of your mukluk and it looks pretty sweat. Are those jones loop bars up front with barmitts? If so, how well do they fit? I'm looking for some pogies for my loops and am worried that they either won't fit or not deal closed. Thx!

  10. #10
    discombobulated SuperModerator
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    I see some creek ride pics!!

  11. #11
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    Great pic's and report. Your experience of the bikes was very similar to mine in the MPLS test ride. I keep thinking about how soft and light the moonlander felt riding it. Must be the lack of gravity.
    laotzucycles.blogspot.com

  12. #12
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    Great pics. What size was the moonlander you were riding (and Hand of Midas)?
    Last edited by damian777; 12-10-2011 at 10:16 PM.

  13. #13
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    Great scoop.


    On the weights you mentions, would you share the bike/size/weight data?

  14. #14
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    The Moonlander Hand of Midas (and I) rode was a 20".
    eSpeCially CrAzy IrRegular TrailBuildin' Crew
    Chequama Mama

    MTB: Mukluk/Moonlander/Super V-1.

  15. #15
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    Yes, the demo Moonlander was a 20; they have a full size run in stock.

    I didn't write down the weights, but suffice it to say that the Moonlander is a lot lighter than I had thought it would be.

    On the Loop bars/Bar Mitts combo, they do work well together. The bar mitts are a little on the short side for this application (they cover just past your wrists), but that's long enough. Riding without gloves, your jacket sleeve is inside the mitt...and riding with gloves, your gloved hand fits perfectly inside the mitt. I like the combo together.

  16. #16
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    After this demo in the morning, Lawfarm & I went out and did 45 miles on gravel and rutted frozen B-Roads on our Mukluks at night. It was 23f outside, and closed out a long day with a lot of Fat Bike action, and both events in the same day really helped me affirm some thoughts on these bikes and how each compares to the other. The best way to really learn about something is to fully immerse yourself into it, and riding a lot is still the best teacher.

    What a great day. Lets make this winter the best cycling winter the midwest has ever seen! WHO'S WITH ME!

  17. #17
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    At the shop, they hung a moonlander on the scale, i THINK it was 36.75.....And then the Mukluk2 was 3.2 lighter....
    HoM?
    CDT

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by CdaleTony View Post
    At the shop, they hung a moonlander on the scale, i THINK it was 36.75.....And then the Mukluk2 was 3.2 lighter....
    HoM?
    CDT

    I have a full size run of a few bikes, i'll get some exact numbers tomorrow morning and hit this up. But we did some weights the other day and were surprised how light the Moonlander really is, somewhere around 2lbs heavier then the Mukluk 2.....ish.

  19. #19
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    36lb is already a good 5-6lb lighter than my white pugs, not that the weight is an issue though

    My standard mukluk 1 was a little over 37lb with flat pedals, size L and stock.
    2014 milage so far - 2,485
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  20. #20
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    I love seeing all those new fatbikes in one spot. Great to see some LBS embracing the full-fat-fabulousness of these rigs...
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  21. #21
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    Someone PM'd me on here, and I emailed them back and deleted the PM, and now my email to them bounced back. Whoever it was--you're best off checking with the shop directly as to their stock. I stopped by this morning to pick up the goggles that I forgot after the Saturday night gravel ride, and saw several boxes of Necromancers coming in the door, but also saw that 2 Moonlanders were gone, along with a 21" Muk 2...and I think maybe a few other fat bikes, too.

  22. #22
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    Great event, had a blast. Thanks NCC

    After riding all of the above I think I'm leaning torwards the Moonlander as my fav.

  23. #23
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    Serial fatporn there nice report!, thanks

    I ordered a ML on the basis of a hunch that those BFLs will only work best on a pair of Hundies, and that the geometry is is similar to a pugsley , BUT... i was told under oath by someone in the know that MLs are lighter than a pugs... but if i told you who i would have to kill you...

    We will find out the truth soon...
    plan it...build it....ride it...love it....
    http://coastkid.blogspot.com/

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by coastkid71 View Post
    Serial fatporn there nice report!, thanks

    I ordered a ML on the basis of a hunch that those BFLs will only work best on a pair of Hundies, and that the geometry is is similar to a pugsley , BUT... i was told under oath by someone in the know that MLs are lighter than a pugs... but if i told you who i would have to kill you...

    We will find out the truth soon...


    You don't have to spill any beans. I'll take care of things.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/com...ts-756475.html

  25. #25
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    On a similar note, are there dealers in the St. Louis area that are stocking fat bikes? In town this week visiting and would like to check them out. Thanks

  26. #26
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    Major props to North Central Cyclery. I couldn't believe the selection when I went up there for my Muk a month ago...it was great to be able to walk into a shop with an open mind and walk out with the bike that fits your criteria the best.

  27. #27
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    The title of this thread made me think of this song:
    Old 97's - Champaign, Illinois - YouTube

  28. #28
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    So after seeing this post yesterday early morning I made the 3 hour tour north to put my germs on a Moonlander....Wish central Illinois had the market demand to support a shop of their caliber. Super cool guys that really care about good customer service! The demo bike was put to very good use as my friend is really on the fence between a Pug and ML.

    Maiden voyage in the freezing rain.


    Next to my BMW 1200GSA front tire....pretty laughable!


    By the way, Moonlander+Thudbuster=magic

  29. #29
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    Crazy ain't they, compared with a motorcycle tire.
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  30. #30
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    Picked up my moonlander tonight, the biggest size is about 38#'s all stock. Lovin' the color!

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    I live in central Illinois. I think it is awesome that a bike store stocks these types of bikes in the state at all. As a commuter all winter long, I hope to purchase a fat bike in the next year. I am getting to old and slow to care about anything more than fun. I have never been to this store or bought from them, but I am trying to work a trip to Chicago with the kids (to go to the shop on the way).
    My main point is to give praise to a store that is thinking outside of the box in Illinois! Bikes available for test drives. Have them in stock. Happy customers. I own my own business and know how hard it is to keep expensive stock on hand (moonlanders in the flat lands).

  32. #32
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    Hey Fred, my in-laws live in Bloomington and there's a vibrant cycling culture there. Some of them go to Decatur weekly for time trials too. So Central Illinois has some serious stoke! It's easy to be "into" stuff when you're in moab or BC or wherever but true love of the sport is in the places where it *isn't* a mecca. Awesome man!

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredfg99 View Post
    I live in central Illinois. I think it is awesome that a bike store stocks these types of bikes in the state at all. As a commuter all winter long, I hope to purchase a fat bike in the next year. I am getting to old and slow to care about anything more than fun. I have never been to this store or bought from them, but I am trying to work a trip to Chicago with the kids (to go to the shop on the way).
    My main point is to give praise to a store that is thinking outside of the box in Illinois! Bikes available for test drives. Have them in stock. Happy customers. I own my own business and know how hard it is to keep expensive stock on hand (moonlanders in the flat lands).
    It is a great shop with very cool and friendly folks. They are very knowledgable and passionate about fat biking. Well worth the stop if you can swing it.

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    Hope

    Quote Originally Posted by fredfg99 View Post
    I live in central Illinois. I think it is awesome that a bike store stocks these types of bikes in the state at all. As a commuter all winter long, I hope to purchase a fat bike in the next year. I am getting to old and slow to care about anything more than fun. I have never been to this store or bought from them, but I am trying to work a trip to Chicago with the kids (to go to the shop on the way).
    My main point is to give praise to a store that is thinking outside of the box in Illinois! Bikes available for test drives. Have them in stock. Happy customers. I own my own business and know how hard it is to keep expensive stock on hand (moonlanders in the flat lands).
    If you do end up coming up, there are some good restaurants between DeKalb and Chicago. Drop me a PM and I'll point you in the right direction...

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