Friday, September 26, 2014

Friday News And Views

The fat bike phenomenon continues to roll along and seems like an avalanche when you consider how much stuff was introduced at Eurobike and Interbike. (HA! I said "avalanche"!) Anyway.......

We were wondering at the shop when this wave will plateau, or when the whole deal will fall off, or.....will it keep on growing? Of course, no one really knows the answer to that, but I will say that I think it has to keep on growing. Why? Well, all these companies didn't jump in to lose money, ya know? More product distributed in more places will sell more products "just because". Of course, that may not be to the levels that these companies think it will go to, but the numbers are not going to shrink in the coming year. I just don't see it happening soon.

Salsa Cycles Bucksaw
There is one big key to the fat bike marketplace. That key is whether or not the average recreational cyclist can get past the "snow bike" image and buy into the fat bike as being the "all-year round" off road, all-terrain vehicle. If that happens at all, then fat bikes will be a growth market for several more years. Of course, that's just what some fat bike producers are hoping for, and some are even pushing the boundaries now.

A legitimate suspension design applied to a fat bike platform has already happened. The Bucksaw, by Salsa Cycles, is going to be seen in the future as a "first" of its kind and maybe "the bike that changed it all", or it will be quickly forgotten as a bad experiment. I highly doubt that it will be seen as a failure judging by all the commentary I've read about this bike, both from everyday riders and folks in the business. (This is a great read that illustrates what I am saying quite well) However; sales figures are what "talks", so if Bucksaws don't fly out of dealers doors, then, you know, the story will be written differently. I seriously doubt that will happen, but it could.

I'm considering getting this type of bike in the near future and tackling the tough trails near my in-laws' home. (And elsewhere, obviously.) I just have a few other goals in the way here first. (Like the Blackborow DS, for starters.)

I'll be seeing lots of this Saturday,
T.I.V11 Recon:

The day Saturday will be spent driving the proposed course for T.I.V11 with my co-conspirator Jeremy Fry. Between the two of us, we will be devising, recording, and discussing the course to death over 300 plus miles. There may be processed beef products consumed along with an energy drink. (It's a tradition, ya know.)

This doesn't mean that the course will be written in stone after Saturday. In fact, I have a funny feeling there will be more questions than answers after the day is over. That's okay too. The thing is that this will kick start the process of figuring out the course and if there needs to be some revisions, well then we've got time to figure that out. You know, things like convenience stores and check point sites.

Of course, there will be a full on report with images when the dust settles, so stay tuned for that coming probably on Monday. An announcement on registration will follow in about a week or two.

More Red:

It may be a little hard to find where I added red here.
 I have pulled the B+ wheels from the Fargo and decided to go with more "burly-ness" for the move back to 29"er hoops. That meant going back to a wheel set from the same era as the Fargo Gen 1. I had built up a Hope Evo Pro II hub set onto some Gordo rims. The Gordo rims were a Salsa Cycles product which were 35mm wide, and although Salsa Cycles denies to the death that they are tubeless rims, that's okay. They totally rock as tubeless rims.

So, I stuck with the Kenda Honey Badger rubber which is pretty fast for how wide and big those tires are. The tires should lend more cush, and with the wider rims, I can lower pressures for better rolling resistance and traction. That means more off road and less gravel stuff for the Fargo. That's okay too......

As for the red stuff, I am growing to like it. I never thought about accessorizing this bike in red things. I always saw this bike in black or maybe even gold anodized things, possibly even green. I actually was going the green route when I bought a Chris King bottom bracket in green for this rig, which ended up on the other Fargo, actually.

Anyway- This Fargo goes back to its roots as a mountain bike that can do gravel, or double track, or fire roads. I have too many dedicated gravel rigs to keep this from being what it was meant to be.

And that wraps up this edition of Friday News And Views. Have a great weekend and ride those bicycles.

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