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  1. #1
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    Salsa Bucksaw opinions?

    After riding a fully rigid fat bike and really loving the way it tamed the trails with its huge tires my searches led me to a full suspension fat bike. Namely the Bucksaw.

    I'm recently getting back into the sport after a knee injury and have been riding an older Trek Liquid 20 while seeing what my limits are. So far so good and my confidence is returning quickly on the trails and I'm tackling more and more of what I used to. I'm now at the point where I'm shopping for a new bike. I have about a $5k budget for a new set of wheels and the Salsa Bucksaw is on my radar as possible options.

    Anyone have one of these or have experience on one? How well do they descend and climb?

  2. #2
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    Love mine and ride it 90% of the time over my Salsa Horsethief 29er. I think climbing is a bit slower with the added weight, but I'm in it for the exercise and I'm no pro. Outside that it helps cut the edges off the harshness of the ride. At 6'2", 200 lbs and a bad back, I have an extra token in the front fork and the pressure set to 100 psi and med rebound. Rear is set to 145 psi and medium rebound. Tires inflated to 8 psi.

    Great grip which helps all the time, and it lets me bomb through rock gardens, choose questionable lines, and go really fast through the downhill switchbacks. I do recommend lighter, faster tires over the stock tires and going tubeless. In the fall I will go back to the Nates.

    I'd get one all over again for sure.


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    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the reply. 8 PSI? You can go that low on fat tires? I'm a bigger rider myself at 5'10" 210lbs. I don't really mind a heavier bike either as I'm not really a racer. I'm in it for fun and keeping fit. How does the bike feel while cornering and have you taken any jumps with it?

    The trails I ride are lots of technical single track with roots and rocks. Which is one of the prime reasons I'm interested in a fat bike.

    I thought about a 29er but after having demo'd few locally here I don't really like the feel of the bigger wheels especially in the tight technical trails here.

  4. #4
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    Wanna have fun? Buy one! I disagree that it's always slower. I kept up with all my buddies on carbon 29ers. I ride on my own mostly, and you can't take the smile off my face.

    For reference, I have a Rip9RDO, Jet9RDO, and sold my Beargrease. Haven't touched anything but my Bucksaw.

    Great thing is.. I'm going to get a B+ wheelset as well, so if I want to ride a little skinnier sometimes, I can.

    Best of all worlds!

    Have fun!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CraptacularOne View Post
    Thanks for the reply. 8 PSI? You can go that low on fat tires? I'm a bigger rider myself at 5'10" 210lbs. I don't really mind a heavier bike either as I'm not really a racer. I'm in it for fun and keeping fit. How does the bike feel while cornering and have you taken any jumps with it?

    The trails I ride are lots of technical single track with roots and rocks. Which is one of the prime reasons I'm interested in a fat bike.

    I thought about a 29er but after having demo'd few locally here I don't really like the feel of the bigger wheels especially in the tight technical trails here.
    Cornering and jumps, are you kidding? I definitely take corners as fast as I can, knowing the traction is there having twice the normal contact patch. I jump whenever I can knowing the landing will be softer and more stable.

    8 psi is my current setting for all conditions. 7 psi if the trail is wet and I'm going into a scenario with a lot of short, quick, steep ups that have rocks and roots. That's where I may wheel spin, but won't at 7psi. Tubeless... I nailed a root into the rim going moderate speed at 8psi. I really thought, oh wow, this is not good. Wheel made it over and everything was fine, and I mean I nailed it.

    29er is still a lot of fun, but the fat is more relaxing for me.


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    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  6. #6
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    How does the 100m of travel feel on jumps and drops? Not that I do much of it, but there are some sections in the trails I ride that do have about 3-4 foot drops and some jumps.

    I've been reading more and more about them and so far I'm liking what I'm hearing. I'm only hesitant because I'd either have to make a long trip to get to a Salsa dealer to buy one or order it sight unseen (which I really don't want to do) The nearest Salsa dealer is about a 4 hour drive from me.

  7. #7
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    3-4 foot drops, as in, your airborne 3-4 feet above the ground? You can probably set it up to handle it without issue, just increase the volume of air you're using. I hit a few jumps that result in being 3' (most are 2' I'd say) but they don't exist in my trails that often so others will have to comment. My trails (in the Northeast) usually have rocks or roots in the landing zone if there is a 3' opportunity, so I pass.

    Well, I've only seen a Bluto be 120, 100 of I think 80 so.... If you want 120, you will have to consider a Mutz which I cannot comment on since I have not ridden.

    I would buy a Bucksaw if it came with 120, but I don't feel like I'm missing out. If I want more squish, I drop to 7psi.


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    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  8. #8
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    Well after speaking to the nearest Salsa dealer to me, it turns out they have a 2015 Bucksaw 1 available for demo! So I'm going to be making the trip this weekend to take it for a test ride myself. Pretty amp'd about getting to try it out first hand!

  9. #9
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    Set the tire psi to 7 or 8. Make sure they set the suspension sag.
    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jester7677 View Post
    Set the tire psi to 7 or 8. Make sure they set the suspension sag.
    I'm sure they will if not I'll be sure to set it myself. They guy seemed pretty knowledgeable and was asking questions like my riding style, height and weight so I got a good vibe going in. If all goes well I just may pull the trigger this weekend!

  11. #11
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    Hope they have a good place to test it too.

    Good luck. I have a BS2 and didn't like the blue in pics, but in person, outside, it really shines. That being said, I like my gold.
    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jester7677 View Post
    Hope they have a good place to test it too.

    Good luck. I have a BS2 and didn't like the blue in pics, but in person, outside, it really shines. That being said, I like my gold.
    They have a hell of a trail in Alafia River State Park in FL. I haven't ridden there in years but riding Alafia again and getting to test the Bucksaw are seemingly perfect reasons to make the drive lol.

    I'm not sold on the powder blue look of the 1 either but never having seen it in person I'll reserve judgement till I get there
    Last edited by CraptacularOne; 08-21-2015 at 08:13 PM.

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    It is not powder blue at all. It's a blue/turquoise metallic. I've never seen a picture that can capture the color. I have my BS1 set up with a 120, and I absolutely love it!

    It's amazing in all areas, and gets off the ground pretty well, too!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by five5 View Post
    It is not powder blue at all. It's a blue/turquoise metallic. I've never seen a picture that can capture the color. I have my BS1 set up with a 120, and I absolutely love it!

    It's amazing in all areas, and gets off the ground pretty well, too!
    Is it with spacers you get 120mm travel or is it a fork option that you had installed? As for the color that's why I reserve judgement till I see it in person.

  15. #15
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    Well?


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    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  16. #16
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    Well I rode both a Horsethief carbon 1 and a Bucksaw 1 and both were excellent rides. I was surprised by how well the Horsethief handled and how nimble it was. It was far better than the last 29er I rode in 2009 and they have indeed come a long way. The bike handled everything I could throw at it and begged for more. Drops, jumps, twisty technical descents....ect it was really a revelation for me and 29ers.

    The Bucksaw was just amazing though. It felt like it had way more than 100mm of travel and the giant tires ate the trail for breakfast. It literally doesn't even acknowledge things like medium sized rocks and roots. It just rolls merrily over them. It climbed reasonably well too but the giant tires were harder to get rolling from slower speeds.

    Cornering was great too, it felt like I had an endless amount of grip. I tried to lean it over and push the limits because well, it wasn't mine lol. But the fat tries just dug in and held relentlessly.

    The paint job was actually pretty cool looking. Pictures of the bike really don't do it any justice for sure. It was definitely an eye catcher out in the sun. Several people asked about the bike. Had somewhat of a small gathering at the trail head of people looking at it and asking what the hell it was lol.

    Now I'm at the hard part....making a decision of what to buy. I'm so torn I decided to stay an extra day and think it over. I got a local motel room and am mulling it over. So I may as well post here and see what some of you folks think.

    I was offered to buy the Horsethief Carbon 1 demo model they had for $3,499. They said it would come with full factory warranty and they would throw in a free tubless tire set of my choice on the bike.

    The Bucksaw they were not selling the demo model so I would have to pay full price. They did offer me a discounted price of $4,499 however.

    So those are my options. I really like both bikes to be honest.

    EDIT: The suspension design was great too. The split pivot system they have really is great at eliminating squat and bob while pedalling. Both bikes use the same split pivot design.

    I'm actually thinking more and more about the Horsethief surprisingly. Not only is it cheaper by $1k but it was also a fantastic ride and did everything I asked of it. But that Bucksaw was indeed everything I hoped it would be and more. I'm just asking myself though do I really need that here and would it perform well on my NC trips to ride it in the mountains all day since there climbing is a big part of the ride. The Horsethief at just over 28lbs has a significant advantage over the burly 35lb Bucksaw.

    ugghh....lol I'm really torn by the 2 bikes.

  17. #17
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    I understand. I have a 2014 Horsethief 2 and a 2015 Bucksaw 2. I live in the NE, where the trails are rough to say the least. Since buying the Bucksaw, I've ridden it far more than the Horsethief, which is now my backup bike or change of pace bike. Both are great. I can just go places on the Bucksaw that I wouldn't like to with the Horsethief, and it is easier on my body.

    Good luck, no wrong answer.
    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  18. #18
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    Yeah the trails I ride here in the south are very rooty and rocky but I was surprised how well the Horsetheif handled them but the Bucksaw made me completely disregard them as if they weren't even there.

  19. #19
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    You can put 29er wheels on the Bucksaw. It wouldn't be a Horsethief when you do that, but it will lose a lot of weight.

    If I couldn't decide between a Bucksaw and a Horsethief, I would get a Pony Rustler.

  20. #20
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    Salsa Bucksaw opinions?

    Yes, folks are putting 27.5+ tires (and apparently 29er per above) on their bucksaws. I have also read one person getting or somehow modifying the rear seat stay to accommodate 29+. So many choices out there, it makes it hard to own just one.

    Will weigh more, but builds physical strength and has versatility...
    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  21. #21
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    I've been LOVING my Bucksaw.


    Tennessee and Georgia MTB Trip by Nate, on Flickr

    It has a Thomson Covert dropper now. So sweet.

  22. #22
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    Well after much deliberation I decided on buying the Bucksaw 1. Yes, it was more money. Yes, it was heavier but dammit, it was an amazing ride! As good as the Horsethief was it wasn't what I drove 4 hours out of my way for. The way I figure it, I'm not a weight weenie anyway and if I have to truck a few more pounds up the trail so be it. I know I will be getting to the bottom faster than my friends after the climb lol.

    Thanks for the input here guys. I'll post up some pics here soon and show off my new toy

  23. #23
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    You'll love it and we look forward to a report after a few rides!
    '16 Bucksaw Carbon X01

  24. #24
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    Would a medium be too largefor me at5'7?

    Salsas chart says so, but the numbers are barely any different from my small sized Atlas. Any ideas welcome

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    I'm afraid to pedal a Bucksaw, I just picked up a used Beargrease of a guy who just got his Bucksaw and I'm going for the Beargrease of late over my other two very fancy XC and AM bikes. I won't do a conventional hardtail 29's but the fatty's definitely make it work for me. I like running a light weight 120tpi Surly Knard 3.8" tire set up tubeless, as long as you feed the power the momentum will reward you. For bike parks I find a 1x is all I need but for all day NC/TN/N GA voyages I go 2x10 instead for that bail out granny gear after 30miles of pedaling and hard climbs.

    You'll enjoy that Bucksaw in FL, I used to ride those trails in Alafia back in 86-90, should go back now just for giggles.
    They don't design these things for clydes!

  26. #26
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    I've put down quite a few miles in TN, NC, and N. GA this year on my Bucksaw. The above pic is somewhere in the Jake Mtn. area. 28x42 low gear is plenty bailout low gear for a 1x10. Hoping to make it down to NC again next month.

    As for sizing, Salsa's size chart put me on a small, too. Medium feels just about perfect for me with a 60mm stem. I do have long arms, but that lets me feel fairly comfortable on many larges, too.

    I'd recommend really drilling down into the numbers and if you can't find any Bucksaws to test ride, test ride bikes with geometry as close to it as you can find. It's what I did. I didn't get to ride a Bucksaw until AFTER I had placed my order.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Welnic View Post
    You can put 29er wheels on the Bucksaw. It wouldn't be a Horsethief when you do that, but it will lose a lot of weight.

    If I couldn't decide between a Bucksaw and a Horsethief, I would get a Pony Rustler.
    This. I have a BS, love it, but the PR is more nimble and gets airborne easier. I may have both at some point.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold View Post
    I've been LOVING my Bucksaw.


    Tennessee and Georgia MTB Trip by Nate, on Flickr

    It has a Thomson Covert dropper now. So sweet.
    Whaa? Nate, you were the guy that "promptly forgot about" your dropper. What caused you to see the light?

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by sisu View Post
    Whaa? Nate, you were the guy that "promptly forgot about" your dropper. What caused you to see the light?
    I JUST added the dropper. On most local trails I still forget I have it. but have bee a few places this year where I wished I had it. Such as where I am going next weekend. Pisgah.

  30. #30
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    Lucky. Is that about 5 hrs for you?

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by sisu View Post
    Lucky. Is that about 5 hrs for you?
    More like 8. Big south fork area is closer to 5 but doesn't have as many lodging options so haven't been there yet.

  32. #32
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    I know this is an old thread but glad to hear about another Bucksaw owner.
    Salsa Bucksaw opinions?-dscn0281.jpg

    My Bucksaw and I will be out at Alafia this Sunday. I have ridden this thing at Santos (Ocala), Alafia, Morris Bridge/Wilderness Trail and Balm Boyette (Ridgeline included). It does great everywhere and the only thing slowing it down is me. There are times I am amazed at how fast it is.

    There is really nothing stock on my build except the frame, fork and headset. Next up is a set of Renthal Fat Lite Carbon bars with less rise (these will go on my '03 Kona Kikapu Deluxe) and a set of tyres that are lighter than the Fat B. Nimble's. This set is 2 pounds heavier than the stock Nates putting the bike at 33.1 pounds.
    Flotilla or Buffet.

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