Moonlander Reviews- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Moonlander Reviews

    Hey guys,
    I'm looking at getting on a fat bike. In my area there is a Moonlander for a decent price but before I go ahead I was wondering if any of you have had one of these. Other things for me to consider are: I live in the Pacific North West, so we don't get a lot of snow, most of my riding is single track, but I also commute to work from time to time on my MTB, The bike I'm currently riding is an older Specialized Hardrock Pro with 26 inch wheels and a worn out fork, so I think anything would be an upgrade. It's still fun to ride though.
    The other options I like are getting a 27.5 plus bike like a Kona Honzo or Unit, or just get a new fork for the 26er.
    So, does the Moonlander make a good trail bike?

  2. #2
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    A fatbike makes a decent commuting rig if you have some obstacles to get around/over and don't mind the rotating mass. I still go for some better rolling summer tires when I do it, but it can be fun. People on cross bikes are going to zoom by you like you are standing still, but you can outfit a fat-bike with some frame bags and such to usually carry what you need without a satchel or pack. A 26" mtb is pretty old at this point with old components. If you want to keep it running, just find out when the next bike-swap is locally, go and buy some old stuff to keep it running, but I'd be hesitant to spend much money on it. As was mentioned in another thread, a fat-bike is not a cure-all and isn't like riding with 4 or 5" of suspension, it's a rigid bike with very heavy wheels, but if you want to ride snow with stability, confidence and make it fun instead of frustrating, they are great for that, and they can be used on other surfaces too.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nube on a Tube View Post
    So, does the Moonlander make a good trail bike?
    Yes. I use mine as a commuter bike and will be putting some Vee Rubber Speedster tires on it this spring when the snow melts. I like that it has clearance for 4.8Ē+ tires so itís more versatile than a Pugsley or many other fatbikes. I got a really good deal on mine as a new, old stock frame from a dealer In Wasilla and had it built up. Iím going to build some fenders for it and use it as my year round commuter. The fat tires are going to be a joy on the bumpy gravel sections of my route to work. Iím not sure if it my imagination or what but it feels like it rides smoother than my aluminum frame Taiga. I like steel bikes and it seems like you can feel the nice steel ride quality but I could be fooling myself as well?

    The offset rear wheel and frame look weird but it handles normally and has been enjoyable to ride on the snow trails this winter. Iím sure itíll work great on summer trails as well. Itís a lot more twitchy than my Taiga but two different style bikes with very different geometry.

    Moonlander Reviews-00d0eb18-8284-495b-a5af-e9bf52f9f8a9.jpg

  4. #4
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    Only complete Fatbike i have bought new and it is still a great bike, esp on the coast, that narrow rear end works great between rocks and no heals catching on the chainstays when riding rocks out the saddle and moving the bike side to side,
    Very good drive chain alinement and no wierd feelings riding from the rear offset.
    A niche bike but still has it`s place esp for an adventure near or far where you need the float of the 5" tyres and 100mm rims,

    Need to get mine out of storage this summer as it`s 50 years since the Moon landing

    Last blog update i wrote about my Moonie;
    coastrider: Surly Moonlander Update; Favourite drive chain set up fitted and out on the coast
    plan it...build it....ride it...love it....
    http://coastkid.blogspot.com/

  5. #5
    turtles make me hot
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    I have a friend with a Moonie and every once in a while he kicks around the idea of selling it off and replacing it with a Wednesday or Ice Cream Truck. He finally bought a Wednesday and has it set up for hardcore trail riding. He still will not sell the Moonlander because he says it so comfortable to ride in snow and on beach sand.
    I like turtles

  6. #6
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    Maybe consider keeping the old bike for a commuter and replacing the worn out fork with a rigid fork, then riding the fatty more for offroad.

  7. #7
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    Thatís a good idea as rigid forks are cheap. Even a new chromoly fork can be bought off eBay for not much money. Fenders are readily available for a regular bike and not very expensive. Thatís basically what I did for years, swapping the parts to different used frames trying to get better ride quality for the bumpy, gravel section of my route. The reason I went fat is I hit upon the idea of buying a plus bike like a Troll for commuting and then realized it was limited for my riding and area. I reasoned that a proper fatbike could be used year round by just swapping the tires to some 3Ē+ slicks for summer and still keep the cushy ride I want.

  8. #8
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    I didn't mention it before but I do have a cx bike that I commute on regularly. But for the odd time I want to ride an alternative route, I take the MTB. I was looking to ride the fatty as a year round MTB, so I would be doing a lot of single track, with uphill, downhill, technical terrain, and some access roads. So the Moonlander would be ridden mostly as a regular MTB. I see that Wren makes a suspension fork as well, so in the long term I was thinking of putting on 100mm of travel up front with maybe a 4 inch tire in the summer, and then in the winter put on the 5 inch tires with the rigid fork. The 26er would probably get sold or passed down to my son.

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