Thinking of a FatBike.....It's Tempting!- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Thinking of a FatBike.....It's Tempting!

    I wanted to hear some thoughts from you all. Yes, I realize your a bit biased as this is the FatBike forum. And my questions are wide open and general. I live in the NorthEast if that helps.

    I am looking at the Trek Farley 9.8 v Farley EX. I'm leaning to 9.8 and not the squish but I don't have enough to go on. Figuring I have til about August/sept of this year forr the year end savings added to what my LBS will shave for me.

    How much do you guys find you ride your FB? I have FS and hardtail MTB's. I would probably put a front shock on if I went with the 9.8.

    Just don't want to miss anything....
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  2. #2
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    I find I ride it in winter on snow and ice and occasionally commuting when it's dry.

  3. #3
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    Once I purchased my fatty, I have a hard time going back to my other bikes, I love it so much it is all I want to ride, I just change up tires for various conditions.

  4. #4
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    My full suspension 29er feels like a toy in comparison to my fat bike. I ride my fatty almost exclusively year round. I have three sets of wheels for different conditions.
    I like turtles

  5. #5
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    Find a used fat bike or demo one, see if you like it before you drop a lot of money on a 9.8 I ride mine year round, they are my only bikes. They are great for the northeast

  6. #6
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    What's blue and red and rode all over? My fat bike.
    :thumbsup:It doesn't matter what I ride as long as I ride it Rubber Side Down●~●.

  7. #7
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    Agreed, I have not touched my regular mountain bike since I got the fatty!!


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  8. #8
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    I live in Pennsylvania. Own two fatbikes. They're basically all I ride anymore other than a DJ and a DH a few days times a year each. Just sold my Giant Reign too.

    Fatbikes are a lot of fun if well-designed and running the right rim/tire combo for rider weight and/or trail conditions.

    Never stopped riding this winter in snow in the Poconos - what a blast.

  9. #9
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    Last 6 months according to my strava
    Fatbike hardtail with Bluto=1100 miles
    27.5+ Hardtail With fox suspension=120 miles
    Full fox suspension 29er=17 miles

    By the way I bought the fatbike 6 months ago. 

    edit: trails ar bad right now and my last three rides on my fatbike were 17, 20 and 15 miles road rides.
    Last edited by SalsaSalsa; 03-27-2017 at 04:08 PM.

  10. #10
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    I'd definitely hit some demo's before you make any decisions. I have a hard tail fat bike and a 6" full suspension bike. The fat bike is my local trail bike for putting on miles and the FS is for the mountains. I live in NC and ride Pisgah (the gnarly stuff), so the fatbike wouldn't cut it out there. The fat bike is a hard tail with 4" Jumbo Jim's that gobbles up the singletrack miles.

    I've ridden quite a few fatty's and settled on one that is built locally. Definitely a lot of difference from a normal fat bike and one that's meant to ride fast. I've ridden some that were a chore to push uphill even in a granny gear. The one I have is a 1x11 and is flat out fast!

  11. #11
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    There has been some good advice here as far as the going and riding before deciding thing. I have a hardtail w/Bluto fat bike and full sus 29er. I find that I ride the 29er on hard pack roads and hard packed single track. I do have some trails in the area that are extra rocky in spots mixed with loose sand and such. In those areas I grab the fatty just for more traction and it does not get affected as much by the big rocks. When people say they are kind of monster truck like, yes they kind of are in a way. My next bike will be a 3" tire full suspension but I don't buy new bikes every year so that will wait till next year or so. I do feel the 3" tires will become more and more popular, its just covers so many areas so well.

  12. #12
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    My Beargrease is great in snow. Here in CO mts I ride it November through melt off, but I can't stand the way it handles at high speed on dirt trials.(mine's rigid no damper)

    I have Mootsybb29er that's so much fun in summer the Beargrease can't compare.

  13. #13
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    I ride my fattie during the winter months, mostly on weekends. Try and squeeze in two or three hours rides, but it can be tough with my son's hockey schedule as well as other family commitments.

    My fattie goes in the basement from march to november. I enjoy riding it, but I have a summer bike that it love and it is fun to ride

  14. #14
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    One more thing, if you are thinking about buying a fattie, ensure you leave enough in the budget for clothing.

    Riding the trails while it is gently snowing is surreal, the same as in the summer, but completely different

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    Thanks for the replies. I will definitely take a ride first. Probably check em out on dirt in Northeast kindgom VT where I should be able to rent it. I like a few other models out there, but I have been happy with trek (good grief!!) and I have a great LBS Trek dealer who is more a friend than a dealer. So prices get a little better, especially if I order with Bluto or want to change something.

    A few things that are making me go hmmmm....1 is the 9.8 Farley spec is pretty damn good and Trek being Trek, I'd expect higher price point. Then compare it to the FS Farlex EX and IDK I would expect a larger price difference between the 2. Not that its trivial, it's legit dollars.

    Big question becomes, and I'm going to bet its more personal than anyone can really answer for me. BUT here goes.....Worth it to go squish? Or run with the HT and add Bluto as the middle ground?? End of day, good decisions to have to make.

    I believe it will get used mainly Nov to March/April, mainly in snowy and mix/muddy terrain (it's still NE and rocky area). I have some local trails that are readily available for weekly rides and I'd get it to a resort a few times as well. I have FS for the remainder of the riding year and am leaning toward HT and Bluto but don't want to miss something and be tearing up later.

    Big plus to the reminder on dollars for clothing. Luckily I do a fair amount of winter hikes and climbs so I have most of what I'd need.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacon Fat View Post
    Find a used fat bike or demo one, see if you like it before you drop a lot of money on a 9.8
    Agreed. Do not buy new. There are tons of people who bought a fatbike and determined that it wasn't for them, usually because they live in Florida or something. As a result, the used market is flooded with essentially brand new bikes for huge discounts.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by biscut View Post
    Thanks for the replies. I will definitely take a ride first. Probably check em out on dirt in Northeast kindgom VT where I should be able to rent it. I like a few other models out there, but I have been happy with trek (good grief!!) and I have a great LBS Trek dealer who is more a friend than a dealer. So prices get a little better, especially if I order with Bluto or want to change something.

    A few things that are making me go hmmmm....1 is the 9.8 Farley spec is pretty damn good and Trek being Trek, I'd expect higher price point. Then compare it to the FS Farlex EX and IDK I would expect a larger price difference between the 2. Not that its trivial, it's legit dollars.

    Big question becomes, and I'm going to bet its more personal than anyone can really answer for me. BUT here goes.....Worth it to go squish? Or run with the HT and add Bluto as the middle ground?? End of day, good decisions to have to make.

    I believe it will get used mainly Nov to March/April, mainly in snowy and mix/muddy terrain (it's still NE and rocky area). I have some local trails that are readily available for weekly rides and I'd get it to a resort a few times as well. I have FS for the remainder of the riding year and am leaning toward HT and Bluto but don't want to miss something and be tearing up later.

    Big plus to the reminder on dollars for clothing. Luckily I do a fair amount of winter hikes and climbs so I have most of what I'd need.
    I'm a big fan of the FS fat bike. They truly are a go anywhere bike. The only downside is the weight. If I was only going to have one fat bike, it would be the FS. It eats up Northeast roots and rocks, does well in snow that has been torn up by hikers. I'm not a huge fan of HT bikes, I like the front and back to track the same. So its either FS or rigid for me. My lightweight rigid fat bikes does well on a lot of trails, but the constant root and rocks of the NE isn't one of them

  18. #18
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    I got back into MTBing and into fatbikes for the first time recently, buying a touch above entry level rigid fatty. In hindsight I wished I had have bitten the bullet and gone with full squish. I like the ride and fun of the fat tires, but the full sus would have been the do everthing treadly

  19. #19
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    I ride FAT year round. Where I live there's literally no snow. Used to live up north in Missouri and rode year round of my fatty too. I had a 2013 Trek Marlin ss and when I got my fatty it just collected dust. My original fatty has over 3000 miles on it mainly on trails consisting of single track through oak forests in the Ozarks.
    On the question of going squish, my new fatty has a Bluto. At my age, 65, I have arthritis in my hands and elbows. The bluto has helped me greatly. It also is excellent at handling most roots and rocks. So it's worth it.
    There's a lot of us who ride year round. Then there's those who put their fatty away at the melt. I personally do not view fat bikes at a one season bike. Because this thing literally saved my life. We have a thread here "fat biking and health" that chronicles the storys of Kant fat bikers successes.
    As it has said:
    "Once yougo fat, you'll never go back".
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    :thumbsup:Oldbear sez: REMEMBER USE YOUR SUNSCREEN:thumbsup:

  20. #20
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    Also, fat bikes can bring peace to the Middle East.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by biscut View Post
    I wanted to hear some thoughts from you all. Yes, I realize your a bit biased as this is the FatBike forum. And my questions are wide open and general. I live in the NorthEast if that helps.

    I am looking at the Trek Farley 9.8 v Farley EX. I'm leaning to 9.8 and not the squish but I don't have enough to go on. Figuring I have til about August/sept of this year forr the year end savings added to what my LBS will shave for me.

    How much do you guys find you ride your FB? I have FS and hardtail MTB's. I would probably put a front shock on if I went with the 9.8.

    Just don't want to miss anything....
    You have four new bikes, unless you're rich or a dealer, I'd suggest slowing down and being more selective. No offense.

    A fatbike is a tool, unique in that it can be used on soft surfaces like snow and sand.

    I don't consider fat bikes ideal for firm dirt surfaces, esp if I have other choices. I have a Hendrix FS+.

    If you only want to ride snow, look for a hardtail with 5" tires, summer is a great time to pick up a used fatbike.

  22. #22
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    Please, please point me in the right direction to find something i'd like that's used. I don't seem to find the flooded market you mentioned. I'm game for a good used. Show me the light!
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    Also, fat bikes can bring peace to the Middle East.
    This explains why Trump just got a FB!!!!!!!!
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse Ben View Post
    You have four new bikes, unless you're rich or a dealer, I'd suggest slowing down and being more selective. No offense.

    A fatbike is a tool, unique in that it can be used on soft surfaces like snow and sand.

    I don't consider fat bikes ideal for firm dirt surfaces, esp if I have other choices. I have a Hendrix FS+.

    If you only want to ride snow, look for a hardtail with 5" tires, summer is a great time to pick up a used fatbike.
    NurseBen: I'm most likely NOT going the squish route. I will most likely ride 90% in snow and agree with the it's a tool comment. I't like having a set of box wrences and a set of stubby wrenches. Fit the same size fastener, but 1 works better than the other SOME of the time.

    The first part I do't get at all. No offense taken but whether I have lots and lots of factory line fresh bikes, or a few decade old bikes; irrelevant. I'm lucky with a good, stable job but blessed with some real riches....healthy family and most of my friends are healthy too. Life is short. All my kids (4) and family are well taken care of, so bikes aren't taking away from anyone. Besides, I don't have to give obama all my money now, just almost all of it to Trump.
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  25. #25
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    90% in snow = you're going to ride it on everything year round. In summer when it's dry, you'll find you miss the fun of the fatbike and you'll go ride it. Then you'll find yourself riding it more and more.

    My Santa Cruz Tallboy will arrive this week, and in no way does that mean my Surly Wednesday is getting mothballed for the summer. Different tools for different jobs! I simply love the fatbike for so many things to consider it a snow only bike.

    However the market is pretty saturated with choices. Here's my slightly biased, but experience driven, list to consider:

    Steel: Surly Wednesday
    Aluminum: Kona Wozo
    Carbon: Fatback Corvus
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  26. #26
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    Saw a 2017 Farley 7(which I own one) on Fat Bike Trader FB page for $1699. There are some good deals there and Fat Bike classifieds. There is a C-dale fat cadd 3 for $800. I Love my 7 by the way. Ride it all the time. 12 months a year. Upgraded it with a Bluto and 27.5 Jackalopes w/38 Hodags. Shorter stem, tubeless, Dropline dropper post. It is very snappy and just FUN!
    Last edited by fishboy316; 03-28-2017 at 08:37 AM.
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  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by biscut View Post
    How much do you guys find you ride your FB? I have FS and hardtail MTB's. I would probably put a front shock on if I went with the 9.8.
    Winter only...roughly November thru March. I did a whole summer riding the fat bike (rigid) and my lower back did not agree with it.

    I have a FS 27.5+ bike for summer...semi-fat.

  28. #28
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    I ride my fat bike mainly in winter as that is what I got it for. When I ride it it gives me a huge grin from ear to ear. But it's a tank and it is no way comparable to my carbon wonder trail bike. I live in a very rocky area and a hard tail fatty just can't compare to a 5+ inch travel trail bike.

    Could I live with a fatty all year round? Yes, if it was higher end and lighter. But would I want to? Probably not.

    You have to consider your style of riding. If your trails are relatively smooth and/or lose it could be a very good option if you spec it right.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse Ben View Post
    You have four new bikes, unless you're rich or a dealer, I'd suggest slowing down and being more selective. No offense.

    A fatbike is a tool, unique in that it can be used on soft surfaces like snow and sand.

    I don't consider fat bikes ideal for firm dirt surfaces, esp if I have other choices. I have a Hendrix FS+.

    If you only want to ride snow, look for a hardtail with 5" tires, summer is a great time to pick up a used fatbike.
    WOW! WOW!!!!

    He has too many bikes??? psht! Have you never heard of n+1?? Jealous much? I have three bikes; should I slow down too? Don't bother saying yes because you will not enjoy my response.

    A fat bike can be a tool, but mostly it's a helluvalotta fun!! Dang, why so dry Ben?

    A fat bike is fine for firm dirt surfaces. They go faster on firm dirt! Whoo hoo!

    Dang Ben. Have a beer. Loosen up. Enjoy the fat bike!

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheNormsk View Post
    I ride my fat bike mainly in winter as that is what I got it for. When I ride it it gives me a huge grin from ear to ear. But it's a tank and it is no way comparable to my carbon wonder trail bike. I live in a very rocky area and a hard tail fatty just can't compare to a 5+ inch travel trail bike.

    Could I live with a fatty all year round? Yes, if it was higher end and lighter. But would I want to? Probably not.

    You have to consider your style of riding. If your trails are relatively smooth and/or lose it could be a very good option if you spec it right.
    I'm trying not to limit myself, but I'm not seeing (besides the first year of just gotta try it on dirt) much that isn't cold and white! My terrain is most often hard pack but rooty and often full of rocks, big and small. I can realistically envision weekly rides locally during winter months and a few trips each winter to Canada, NH, VT for specific FB time. End of day I'll ride for sure but the snowboard gonna win out a lot.

    Farley 9.8 rigid, probably it. Soo light, love that. As I get older I could add a shock if needed to the front. If I find it pounds me too hard. Leaning.....I feel the power overtaking me...
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  31. #31
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    git it! git it! git it!! whoo hoo!!!

  32. #32
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    I've got the Framed Minn 3.0 XWT. It's rigid, and I think that's fine for a fattie. If you want FS, you already have that in another bike. Psht, if you decide you want a Bluto up front or a whole FS fattie, git that too! I am a strong proponent of n+1!!

    Make sure you post a pic of the new steed once it's in the stable.

  33. #33
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    A Farley hardtail with a suspension fork is an amazing ride. They will flat out get it. Fun and fast. They hold in the turns and climb like crazy. Just do it! You will not regret it.
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  34. #34
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    Couple of thoughts. Get the front suspension. Think frozen post holes and taming some of the rocky stuff in warmer weather. Boston area year round rider with a Farley 8. Also would go with 26" rims and the ability to run 5" tires. More tire choices than 27.5 rims, like studded ones.

  35. #35
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    My best friend started with a Farley (alloy frame with X1 1x11) but he killed his rear rim in under 75 miles, so bad it wouldn't hold tubeless anymore. He got a second wheel (warranty) and killed that one too. He's about 230-240lbs and a aggressive rider, we live in different parts of CT. He ended up getting the bike shop to take the bike back (limited availability of 27.5 fat rims) and spending the $1000 to upgrade to the Farley EX (full suspension and better rims). He couldn't be happier and is probably going to sell his Intense Tracer that he's had for a few years now.

    Remember, fat bikes aren't a magic bullet for riding on snow. If it's too deep or too soft/slushy it doesn't really make a difference, fat bike or regular trail bike, you're not riding until the snow melts and freezes hard or until the trails get groomed if that's a thing in your area (it's not here). If next winter is like this one, I will probably end up buying snow shoes and walking the dog on the bike trails...
    I like bikes

  36. #36
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    yzedf, I agree with that last part only to a degree. I used to think that too until I got some good winter tires. Now I just point the bike in the direction I want to go and start pedaling. Of course some situations like super deep snow and a few other things are just not going to work. But a decent set of tires for snow make a huge difference in how much a person on a fat bike can enjoy winter riding.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by biscut View Post
    I'm trying not to limit myself, but I'm not seeing (besides the first year of just gotta try it on dirt) much that isn't cold and white! My terrain is most often hard pack but rooty and often full of rocks, big and small. I can realistically envision weekly rides locally during winter months and a few trips each winter to Canada, NH, VT for specific FB time. End of day I'll ride for sure but the snowboard gonna win out a lot.

    Farley 9.8 rigid, probably it. Soo light, love that. As I get older I could add a shock if needed to the front. If I find it pounds me too hard. Leaning.....I feel the power overtaking me...
    If you think you'll ride it enough I snow then go for it. If not, then stick with the snowboard and rent a FB when you want to use one on trips.

    I got one as I realized I was missing out in the mountains and I don't ski. For example, on Sunday I did this






  38. #38
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    You still have snow??!! Jealous!! Nice pics Norm

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by HotHead View Post
    You still have snow??!! Jealous!! Nice pics Norm
    Not where I live (its raining) but 10 miles west of me and 4000 ft higher the mountains are currently being dumped on today - should have an extra 10 inches of snow tomorrow.

    PS. Those photos where up around 10,400 feet.

  40. #40
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    Great start OP !
    Enjoying the reads here and never expected so much full time love for the FB. Figured it to be bike #2 or #3 for everyone and I see it's a primary daily driver for lots. Very cool.

    I thought about them as well, in my case I recently went 27.5 plus and it's fat in comparison to my 26"x 2.2 and I expect will be my do-all for the types of rides I do / have done.

    Hope you find a great deal on pre-owned as I'm sure the fat buyer rage was on big time before many knew what they wanted or need if they still ride at all. Probably some garage queens out there. In your world of not hurting for funds, it's nice to have the option and easier getting exactly what you want as new though.
    Last edited by bachman1961; 03-28-2017 at 01:38 PM.
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  41. #41
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    Try before you buy! and buy second hand(as long as its in good condition) i had a Norco Sasquatch that i used mostly for sand riding(could use it now for snow...but its gone) "walking" the dog.
    i also used it for trail riding etc 4hr XC race,a Gravity Enduro(broke my Enduro bike)
    to be honest they are not a great all rounder being a slug on anything hard packed and bouncing off rocks like a pogo stick...the Bluto may as well be made of licorice....mud more than inch deep was a PITA

    Maintenance and my financial situation made me sell it(and three other bikes),after every beach ride i had to strip the bike down BB and headset etc as there was sand even in the frame.....i so wanted a Rohloff hub

    tyre pressures are very important to the handling and ability of the bike.

    great traction in places where my other bikes dont get much.....so climbing was .....fun!?
    more comfort on the sharp little bumps(not the bigger dips tho) its a laugh beating people at climbing or descending on one and here there are not many FB's so its something to talk about...i let a heap of people ride mine.

    now IF i was to have another FB it would need to suit a specific job eg Sand/snow so IMHO no suspension(to the best of my knowledge no one makes a good fork yet) less maintenance,weight
    Pinion or hub gear(this is an issue as it dictates the tyre size) would be awesome.

    OR if its for more trail riding then have the fork and a set of 27.5+ wheels so you can swap them over.

    this is only my bias opinion


  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by leeboh View Post
    Couple of thoughts. Get the front suspension. Think frozen post holes and taming some of the rocky stuff in warmer weather.
    I agree with that. Don't underestimate the abuse that frozen post holes will give you. My ride on Sunday was full of these and it was bearable because of the suspension. Without, it probably would have hurt the wrists...

  43. #43
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    Gotta have suspension fork for yearround fatbiking unless you ride beaches and snow exclusively.

    Two fatbikes - new one came with Bluto the other was used and I got a good deal to install Bluto.

    Don't really see as much a need for FS though.

  44. #44
    mtbr member
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    Mar 2017
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    2
    Think of my bike.

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