Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Vee Bulldozer (PSC) in White | Sneak Peek

For 2016 our friends over at Vee Rubber have tweaked the Bulldozer.  

The 5" tire is now offered in a 120 TPI pure silica compound (PSC) in white. For you traditionalists you can also get the tire in black.

Vee have sent along a pair of these beauties to Fatbike Republic for an extensive review.  Here are a few "sneak peek" pictures to get things started.

Check out the full review here.

Getting ready to head outside.

Sitting next to its single compound 72 TPI brother.

Checking out the sunshine.

Getting dirty.

Stay tuned !

Sunday, 18 October 2015

What's in your FAT Backpack?

I have ridden with folks that take nothing but an allen key and a bottle of water, while others could rebuild their bike with spare parts on the trail in the dark.  I try to keep my backpack towards the lighter end of the spectrum.   

I carry the vast majority of my tools in this inexpensive two compartment pencil case.  As this is the heaviest item it lays on the bottom of my fatpack. 

The case is jam packed full of items that I would need to get me (or a buddy) back on the trail if something should go wrong.

Clockwise from top left:

- Tire levers
- Two quick links
- Needle nose plyers
- Utility knike
- Various zip ties
- Matches
- Electrical tape
- Patch kit
- Multi-tool (center)

I also carry a small high volume pump, tire gauge, tube and a pair of stretchy gloves.  The folding saw gets added if I'm riding after a large wind storm or if I'm riding in unfamiliar wooded terrain.

Its always good to bring along food in case you or a buddy get low on fuel. Taste of Nature and Clif bars are my favorite, with a few boxes of raisins for a quick boost of energy.

A fatpack would not be complete without a few medical supplies.  A couple of large band-aids, lip balm (mostly for winter), sun screen (mostly for summer) and arnica (homeopathic used for impact injuries).

The food and medical supplies are in double plastic ziplock type bags to keep it dry.  I also squirrel away a $5 bill in case a convenience store stop is needed.  And finally, attached to the outside of the pack, is a waterproof watch and Fox 40 whistle.

Although additional things do creep in from time to time, based on the excursion, I feel the above items are the bare necessities for my fatbike adventures.  

Is there anything you would add or remove?

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Critical Mass | Fatbike Style

I recently had the opportunity to take part in a very unique fatbike ride in my city . . . a Critical Mass.  Be sure to check out the video below.

The Critical Mass movement originated in San Francisco in the early 1990's and has spread globally.  Some see the event as a protest while other see it more as a social event to promote cycling and clean air.

The ride normally occurs on the last Friday of every month and beyond a start time and location there is normally no set route or destination.  Its just a bunch of cyclists that take to the road to celebrate "pedal power" riding through the streets in one large group eventually returning to where the ride began.  

The ride I attended with my Bigfoot started in a centrally located park (Bannerman Park) at 6:00 pm and meandered through the downtown core.  There were all sorts of bikes participating: ultra modern carbon road bikes & vintage steel roadies, full-suspension mountain & hard tails, city cruisers, semi-recumbents, muts, e-bikes, a penny farthing . . . and of course fatbikes.  And the riders themselves were just as eclectic as the bikes.

With and average speed 9.3 kph the 100 or so bikes were in no real hurry and the downtown rush hour traffic didn't mind.  I was expecting a few grimaces and dirty looks from drivers, however all I saw were smiles and people pointing from their cars.  A few pedestrians even joined members of the mass with enthusiastic whooping. 

After getting a group picture at City Hall we headed back to Bannerman Park where a LBS (Cychotic) had set up a free BBQ in the gazebo for the riders.

The 6.1 km ride took about an hour and was not overly challenging, but it was one of the most interesting rides I have ever been on. Be sure to watch the video to see how unique this event really is.