September 20, 2012
Plenty of jumbo-wheeled bicycles are appearing on the trails of the Outdoor Demo and the booths of the main Interbike exhibit hall. While they’re definitely eye candy because of their unique look, people are generally really excited for their performance. The inherent suspension found in such large tyres affords a certain level of vibration muting in the ride, while the buoyancy of the tyres also means they’re great in snow, mud, sand and other nasty conditions.
Surly and Salsa are definitely not pulling any punches with all of their fat tyre bike offerings. In fact Salsa’s only 26in bikes these days are fat bikes.
The venerable Phil Wood is even getting in the game! While company representatives insist they’re not in the fat bike building business, they do have two of these bikes in existence. Instead of offering the whole bike, they are offering all of the bits for people to make their own fat bike.
9:Zero:7 is not only the calling area code for Alaska, it’s also a pure-play fat bike company based in that cold state. And what do they have a lot of in Alaska? Snow and ice, which is one of the contributing factors for the founding of this four year old company. All of its sexy bike frames are hydroformed aluminum. But sexy isn’t the only benefit of the frame shapes. It’s also supposed to be more laterally stiff and give better stand-over, which is good when you need to dismount a lot on the snow.
But it’s not all about snow. 9:Zero:7 also has a frame design with a split seat stay and sliding dropouts for those wishing to run belt drive systems…which are more desired in desert settings.