Is fatbiking technical at all?

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ajoten
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Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby ajoten » Mon Nov 12, 2018 08:47 am

As a road cyclist who is extremely unsettled when on a mountain bike, is a fat bike going to be a magic bullet re trundling down "tricky" single track? I just end up pushing when I lose my nerve, and haven't the time to put the hours in getting experience.

FishFish
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby FishFish » Mon Nov 12, 2018 08:54 am

Well, if you do not have the time to go out on a bike then you will not go out on a bike. As to it being technical. No it is not. It is cycling.
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Blokie13
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby Blokie13 » Mon Nov 12, 2018 09:36 am

Simple answer is no it won't.

If you give us some more info we will be able to help you set up what you have optimally for the terrain that you ride.

What type of trails do you ride?
What bike do you have?
What tire pressures are you running?
Are you running tubeless?
What do you mean by unsettled?
What would you consider "tricky"?
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ajoten
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby ajoten » Mon Nov 12, 2018 09:49 am

I have an mtb w/e every other year with experienced mates, usually self-navigated non-trail centre. This w/e were up the Long Mynd in Shropshire.

Felt Q620. 40psi (recommended minimum according to the sidewall) not tubeless.

"Unsettled" = expecting to lose control. This I pushed down https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kI6J0alsMKk, although the weather was worse than that vid and it doesn't adequately show the 10' drop on the edge.

Tetragrammaton1
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby Tetragrammaton1 » Mon Nov 12, 2018 09:51 am

Fat bikes ( or plus bikes as the PC brigade have insisted on having them called now :roll: ) were originally developed for riding on sand ( although there are some known examples dating back to the early 1900’s ). Probably the first ‘modern’ example was built in 1980, for a guy called Jean Naud. He rode it from Niger, to Algeria. In 1986 he rode it across the Sahara desert. In the late 1980s Alaskan frame builders developed the fat / plus bike idea for riding on snow ( because you need a wide contact patch for snow riding ). So, to answer OP’s question, yes fat biking can be technical, and yes it should help alleviate any skittishness on loose surfaces. The more experience you gain, the better.

ajoten
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby ajoten » Mon Nov 12, 2018 09:56 am

Yeah, does strike me that at I my great age one can't "dabble" in stuff but need to practise, practise, practise.

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cooldad
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby cooldad » Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:14 am

Forget a fatbike, and 40psi is madness. Try starting around 28 rear, 24 front and experiment.

That was really a video of gentle singletrack. Apart from the odd root and a few rocks I saw nothing remotely technical.

You just need to ride more. A lot more.
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ajoten
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby ajoten » Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:17 am

Interesting. I just assumed Kenda knew more about tyres than me and 40 was marked as the minimum for a reason.

robertpb
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby robertpb » Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:18 am

At 40psi you will be suffering with grip and traction, I've never ridden in 34 years of MTBing with more than 28psi.

Forget what is written on the sidewall, my pressures are in the low 20's in the back and 2-3psi less in the front.
Now where's that "Get Out of Crash Free Card"

robertpb
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby robertpb » Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:21 am

ajoten wrote:Interesting. I just assumed Kenda knew more about tyres than me and 40 was marked as the minimum for a reason.


That's Kenda legal department backside covering.
Now where's that "Get Out of Crash Free Card"

Imposter
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby Imposter » Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:27 am

ajoten wrote:As a road cyclist who is extremely unsettled when on a mountain bike, is a fat bike going to be a magic bullet re trundling down "tricky" single track?


No, is the short answer. Potentially it could make things harder, not easier. What you do need to do though is ride your MTB more than once every two years. That will certainly help.

trek_dan
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby trek_dan » Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:34 am

Dropping 10-15psi from your tyres would be a good start. When I first started riding off road I would always pump my tyres up way too hard thinking it would prevent punctures but its actually does the opposite as it induces snakes bites punctures more easily if you hit rocks or do little drops, I think its just a bad habit picked from being a roadie.

Blokie13
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby Blokie13 » Mon Nov 12, 2018 11:05 am

Are you running the stock tyres on it too?

If so, I'd suggest changing to a better tire (as well as dropping the PSI), and also make sure you've got the forks set up correctly for your body weight (sag) and have a play with rebound etc (start in the middle setting).

From the BikeRadar review of your bike:

BikeRadar verdict
"Still a confident trail bike despite its poor tyres and the slightly downmarket parts spec. Probably not quite worth the investment in upgrades though"
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BillyCool
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby BillyCool » Mon Nov 12, 2018 12:06 pm

I do think you are looking for an instant solution and won't necessarily find it riding a fat bike.

Your challenges come from lack of experience/practice, which subsequently affect your confidence/performance.

40psi is quite high. I've you have inner tubes then trying 30-35psi. I doubt you are riding anything too technical to risk pinch flats and I'm sure some people will suggest even lower.

What tyres have you got on the bike? Tyre choice can have a bit impact on handling/grip/stability.

You also find that with anything off-road and downhill, you generally need your weight more over the rear wheel. A lot of road riders will stay in the saddle in a more central position and as soon as the front of the bike drops they `tilt` forward and all your weight goes over the front wheel. It can be very unerving and easily result in OTB.

I don't know your exact level of competence so I suspect it's just lack of experience.

Keep at it though. MTB is awesome once you get your head round it.
"Ride, crash, replace"

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JBA
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby JBA » Mon Nov 12, 2018 12:17 pm

As others have said, invest in a set of decent tyres and experiment with pressures. With tubes start at 35 rear, 32 front and take it from there.
Drop your saddle on descents as well. This will allow you to more easily shift your weight towards the rear of the bike and let you move the bike around under you. Getting out if the saddle on downhills lets you use your legs as shock absorbers as well.
The key though is practice and experience. Is there a trail centre or any trails nearby where you can go and practice?
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Brakeless
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby Brakeless » Mon Nov 12, 2018 15:59 pm

Tetragrammaton1 wrote:Fat bikes ( or plus bikes as the PC brigade have insisted on having them called now :roll: ) were originally developed for riding on sand ( although there are some known examples dating back to the early 1900’s ). Probably the first ‘modern’ example was built in 1980, for a guy called Jean Naud. He rode it from Niger, to Algeria. In 1986 he rode it across the Sahara desert. In the late 1980s Alaskan frame builders developed the fat / plus bike idea for riding on snow ( because you need a wide contact patch for snow riding ). So, to answer OP’s question, yes fat biking can be technical, and yes it should help alleviate any skittishness on loose surfaces. The more experience you gain, the better.


Aren't you the expert.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fatbike

That'll be a no then.

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JBA
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby JBA » Mon Nov 12, 2018 16:37 pm

Tetragrammaton1 wrote:Fat bikes ( or plus bikes as the PC brigade have insisted on having them called now...


Except they don’t.
A plus bike is not a fat bike.
“Life has been unfaithful
And it all promised so so much”

Giant Trance 2 27.5 2016 ¦ Bird Zero Mk1 ¦ Giant Revolt Advanced 2 2019 ¦ Giant Defy 1 2015
Giant Anthem 3 2015 ¦ Specialized Myka Comp FSR 2009

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steve_sordy
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby steve_sordy » Mon Nov 12, 2018 20:16 pm

You probably have many years on a road bike and may feel it unnecessary to go on an "Introduction to MTB" skills course. But I assure you that MTB requires a wide range of different skills to that of riding a road bike. I had ridden a bike on the roads for years and then I bought my first MTB. I went on an introductory course and it was the best money I could have spent.

And drop your tyre pressures! My riding weight is 14.5 stone and I ride a bike with tubeless 27.5x2.2 tyres (Continental Trail Kings with the black chilli compound). Front is 22psi, rear is 24. :)

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cooldad
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby cooldad » Mon Nov 12, 2018 20:32 pm

Decent tyres also make a huge difference. Folding with a nice soft compound, as SS mentioned with Black Chilli.

But nothing works like riding more.
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Imposter
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Re: Is fatbiking technical at all?

Postby Imposter » Mon Nov 12, 2018 20:57 pm

Taken from another thread:

Tetragrammaton1 wrote:
Imposter wrote:
Why do you keep coming back?


To try and educate the ill informed, by using a heady mix of actual real world knowledge, and experience.


Gotta love that heady mix of misinterpreting Wikipedia and made-up bullshit...


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