Does it exist..??? A fat-tire bike (generally for sandy, or snowy roads) with the power of a serious e-MTB (apt for steep hills, off-roads) ..??

Mike TowpathTraveler

Well-Known Member
Hi Louis,
Haibike Full FatSix happy owner here, since March 2017. Model year 2016 Haibike. As I find myself pedaling more on asphalt road shoulders around my home area than actual dirt trails, I think this bike is more than capable of delivering you the kind of ride with the power you are looking for. Especially in the newer models with the Yamaha PWX-2 and Sram Eagle gearing. The trick for you would be finding one in Europe as they pretty much sell out quickly as they do here in the States.

That Watt Wagons should be another strong consideration if Pushkar can ship to Europe. There is no more a proactive, enthusiastic and dedicated owner of a bike manufacturing business than Pushkar is. Check out that WattWagon's forum to see. The Haibikes, HaibikeUSA and all of the rest of them can take a few lessons on how to keep the customer an informed and happy one, by looking at how he conducts business.

The Full FatSix has a very loyal following in Europe, on the German pedelec forum. Here's the link: https://www.pedelecforum.de/forum/i...ab-2016-besitzer-jetzt-wirds-voll-fett.39510/ That site overall has alot of great information in it worth checking out.

On the flats with little elevation, I can get 40 miles on a fully charged 500wh battery, running in the High power setting of this Yamaha PW. This week, I picked up another new 500wh battery, making that 3 500's and the original 2016 400wh battery (still going strong at 100% capacity), for a potential of 1900wh for traveling long distances.

Here is a list of the things gone wrong in over 14,500 miles of active, 365 days riding (minus blizzards or tropical storms):

1. Speed sensor magnet loosed up on me one ride. I tightened it up and went my way.
2. The chain stretched after 11,000 miles, wearing the front chain ring teeth. I replaced the chain and front large chain ring.
3. Replaced the LCD's internal battery a year and a half ago.
4. Flat tires. Too many to count. It's part of the fatbiking on asphalt roadway shoulders game.
5. That's it. Now, I don't get air on the bike, I don't beat it to death. I wipe the bike down most ever post-ride. Lube up the chain links with dry lube before most every ride. I charge the batteries to 100 percent post ride after a good cool-down. I don't get hung up like many folks do about charging it to 80%.

I've done alot of things to make this a true, trail and road worthy, touring-capable, 24/7 road and off road bike. Front and rear Old Man Mountain racks that use the Robert Axle thru axle as the chief mounting point. All sorts of Ortlieb bags for this application or that application. A Schmidt SON28 dyno hub feeding a Schmidt Edelux II front headlight and Schmidt SON tail lamp; all the more to make me visible even in the daytime. Tannus Armours (before that, I was tubeless until I learned that a major cut in the tire and no spare tube in your gear bag means a long walk.)

Long post, sorry. Hope it helps. Poster @Haystacks has a nice looking fatty there as well. He knows like I know, that there is nothing like the comfort, sure handed stability and PLAIN OLD FUN that riding a fat bike, a GOOD fatbike, makes the rider feel. I think you will agree, once you decide on which one you are going to get. Good luck and keep us informed of your decision.

100_5393.JPG

Local riding near home last week, a 30 mile jaunt using High power and one 500wh battery. Asphalt riding. That rear bag is an Ortlieb Office bag, sized large. Get two for the rear rack and you have pretty much enough capacity for your commute.

100_5431.JPG

I took this pic on yesterday's ride east and back. Goshen Pond, Mullica River, New Jersey (USA) Pine Barrens. Asphalt road shoulder riding to get to this point. Rode on the deep sugar sand roads for a few miles before it was time to head home. 62 miles (99.72 km) total. That particular rear bag is the Ortlieb E-Mate, which has a carrier built into the bag to accept the Yamaha battery. For this trip, I brought my spare battery as I was moving at speeds from 11 to 19 mph. Not seen is the PearTune speed chip I installed. It's nice to go over the 20mph factory cut off speed every now and then. There really is no other bike that can ride on asphalt then jump onto a deep, sugar sand road like a good mid drive fat bike can. There is no other substitute......
 

TOOSLOW

Active Member
"Hi Louis,
Haibike Full FatSix happy owner here, since March 2017. Model year 2016 Haibike. As I find myself pedaling more on asphalt road shoulders around my home area than actual dirt trails, I think this bike is more than capable of delivering you the kind of ride with the power you are looking for."

As a owner of a Monster EFS, who actually uses the bike for single track, summer and winter,
putting the bike in the most extreme conditions, and terrain, I can assure you, the Haibike and the Bulls Monster EFS are you only true options for a fatbike capable of anything you can throw at it. There truly are no other options. Full suspension, Bosch powered, Fatbike glory.
Be forewarned though, the $ setback will be high.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
"Hi Louis,
Haibike Full FatSix happy owner here, since March 2017. Model year 2016 Haibike. As I find myself pedaling more on asphalt road shoulders around my home area than actual dirt trails, I think this bike is more than capable of delivering you the kind of ride with the power you are looking for."

As a owner of a Monster EFS, who actually uses the bike for single track, summer and winter,
putting the bike in the most extreme conditions, and terrain, I can assure you, the Haibike and the Bulls Monster EFS are you only true options for a fatbike capable of anything you can throw at it. There truly are no other options. Full suspension, Bosch powered, Fatbike glory.
Be forewarned though, the $ setback will be high.
Owner of a Bafang Ultra powered hard tail fatty here, w/19.2ah battery (most power available anywhere). Love the bike, but NOT thrilled with the "fatty" tires at all. The increased rolling resistance, in my opinion, is NOT offset by a better ride. Have since found there are better ways of doing both. Stock knobby tires are noisy when operated at speeds over 10-12mph on pavement. Fat street tires/slicks (with street tread) have a tendency toward self steering when operated on uneven pavement (unnerving at best). 4" tires make the bike look huge and feel heavy.

Currently collecting parts to convert to 27.5+ tires (27.5x2.4-2.8") for a great ride, AND greatly reduced rolling resistance - with NO self steering tendency. I bought a fatty after hearing how great they are and I consider that a total mistake. I just don't spend enough time where they do a really good job/are necessary - in sand and snow.

Not here to argue the benefits of 4" tires, only to share they didn't work out for me/my riding style. I would caution anyone considering them.....
 

TForan

Well-Known Member
Owner of a Bafang Ultra powered hard tail fatty here, w/19.2ah battery (most power available anywhere). Love the bike, but NOT thrilled with the "fatty" tires at all. The increased rolling resistance, in my opinion, is NOT offset by a better ride. Have since found there are better ways of doing both. Stock knobby tires are noisy when operated at speeds over 10-12mph on pavement. Fat street tires/slicks (with street tread) have a tendency toward self steering when operated on uneven pavement (unnerving at best). 4" tires make the bike look huge and feel heavy.

Currently collecting parts to convert to 27.5+ tires (27.5x2.4-2.8") for a great ride, AND greatly reduced rolling resistance - with NO self steering tendency. I bought a fatty after hearing how great they are and I consider that a total mistake. I just don't spend enough time where they do a really good job/are necessary - in sand and snow.

Not here to argue the benefits of 4" tires, only to share they didn't work out for me/my riding style. I would caution anyone considering them.....
I have 3.5 inch V Speedsters on my Ultra and if I keep around 20 psi in them, self steering isn't a problem.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
I have 3.5 inch V Speedsters on my Ultra and if I keep around 20 psi in them, self steering isn't a problem.
My experience at 20psi was the ride advantage of the big tires was pretty much gone. I do get that it's a big case of different strokes/personal preferences. I was just trying to say these big tires aren't for everyone. There ARE some downsides. -Al
 

TForan

Well-Known Member
My experience at 20psi was the ride advantage of the big tires was pretty much gone. I do get that it's a big case of different strokes/personal preferences. I was just trying to say these big tires aren't for everyone. There ARE some downsides. -Al
Not to me. They still work for crappy city streets. I don't expect FS ride.
 

Jon A

Member
Region
USA
Haibike Full FatSix happy owner here, since March 2017. Model year 2016 Haibike......
I'm always in awe of all you've done with that bike, Mike. I plan to follow your lead with my E06 with a rear rack, ability to pull a trailer and extra batteries when in "Hunting/transportation mode," though I don't think I'll ever rack up as many miles as you! Respect! The main reason I didn't even think of the FatSix as an option is hearing lately they aren't even available in the US anymore. Of course the OP isn't in the US so I shouldn't have done that.
I can assure you, the Haibike and the Bulls Monster EFS are you only true options for a fatbike capable of anything you can throw at it. There truly are no other options.
They are certainly nice bikes, but the "only true options?" That might be a wee bit strong. While I think the OP would be likely be happy with either of them, I think there are quite a few bikes out there he'd be happy with as well. About the only question I would have with those two is the power level--the OP is specifically asking for hill climbing ability at commuting speeds. As I said before, how much power will make him happy is something only he can really answer. If he could get a test ride on one that would be great for guiding him.
Love the bike, but NOT thrilled with the "fatty" tires at all. The increased rolling resistance, in my opinion, is NOT offset by a better ride. Have since found there are better ways of doing both. Stock knobby tires are noisy when operated at speeds over 10-12mph on pavement. Fat street tires/slicks (with street tread) have a tendency toward self steering when operated on uneven pavement (unnerving at best). 4" tires make the bike look huge and feel heavy.
Which specific tires did you try? Tire choice (even pressure with the same tire) makes a huge difference in the way a fatbike feels. Did you ever try the Jumbo Jims Mike uses? They have a reputation for being extremely fast rolling but I haven't tried them myself.

There are also 27.5" fat tires (if your bike will fit them) which is my favored size (already have a set of 27.5" carbon wheels on the way along with the E06). I can't say I have enough experience with every type to say with scientific certainty, but my experience does seem to line up with pretty much everybody else who has tried both in that the 27.5"X3.8/4.0 tires (for the same type) are better handling with less self-steering, less bouncyness and faster rolling while providing better traction than the 26X4's. Of course not every tire is available in both sizes so it's not always a fair comparison.

While again, not scientific, I can offer some comparison between my Fat with 27.5x3.8/4.0 and my trail bike with 29X2.5" tires. I don't put a ton of miles on pavement like some but do currently ride it enough to make some comparisons. Even though they may "feel slower" in actuality they aren't as different as many might think. Down a fairly short, mild hill on smooth pavement I've run hundreds of times my top speed as measured with GPS isn't much different. 2 of the three fastest top speeds reached are held by the fatbike. These are not street tires either but pretty darn aggressive offroad tires (Vanhelgas) running only 8 psi front, 10 psi rear (vs 22F/25R for the trailbike) but I do think a test scientifically controlled enough would probably find a difference in favor of the 29's. But in my use, it seems small enough that the top speed test seems to be a contest of which day had a bigger tailwind. And on dirt/gravel/rocks, etc (which I care about more than pavement) almost all of my fastest times on any segment of track are held by the fatbike. The steeper and nastier the hill, the better the fatbike does. Yes, the knobby fat tires are louder on pavement, but I only seem to notice that for the first 30 seconds of every ride, then it's tuned out. Different people will certainly differ in that respect, but there are much more quiet fat tires than the ones I run as well.

Maybe when the E06 gets here, if I find a way to graph watts per mile accurately, I do some experimenting with different tire types of throttle-only runs on a particular circuit. That might be fun!
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
Jon, if your emphasis is play in the dirt, you may really like the fatter tires. My emphasis is mostly paved, probably 90%, with the other 10% being everything else. The self steering issue I had was when using Origin 8's. After that experience I'd had enough of 26x4" tires.

My bigger point is to get those considering a fatty to ask some questions prior to jumping in. As mentioned I have no problem with those using and enjoying them. I just wanted to present the case of somebody who didn't to avoid everyone from assuming they'll work well for everyone.

I have a set of 27.5x 2.4 Schwalbe Super Moto-x tires on a city bike that I really like. Great ride with little rolling resistance running under 40psi. Same impression of that same tire on another 26" city bike. That's motivating me to set the fatty up to use 27.5x2.3-2.8 tires on something like a 36mm rim. Current plan is lacing up a new set of rims to the existing hubs. -Al
 

Mike TowpathTraveler

Well-Known Member
@Jon A : Thanks for the kind words. The miles just have a way of adding up as you go along. I look at it like this, an electric fat bike can go everywhere a road and e-mtb can go......but a road bike cannot go everywhere an electric fatbike can. And an e-mtb will have trouble (think sugar sand roads and snow) where a fat electric won't.

Racks, bags and even trailers turn the e-fat into a potential cross-country tourer. I like what you've got planned for your fully suspended fat Dengfu. Just be careful to not drop that bike!!

Haibike imo is screwing the pooch in the US and abroad in Europe, imo. The parent company put alot of it's capital in that Flyon design and it seems it hasn't worked out well by reading from dissatisfied haibike facebook readers. Now, H-Bike has redesigned their all-mountain series and their carbon framed bike is showing stress crack failures in the area of the suspension bushing mounts. (Something you need to keep in mind about your all-carbon framed ebike). Meanwhile, they have severely restricted the use of the Yamaha ebike motor in lieu of the new Bosch. And at the US site, they have yet to show product for sale of their new, redesigned models; and at that, their model lineup is a shadow from what it once was 3-4-5 years ago. And no signs of a 2021 Full FatSix or hard tail FatSix for sale. It's almost like they are tanking their own business by a lack of interest on their part....

You are right.....Full FatSix stock seems to be dried up in the US right now. Louis in Spain has a better chance of finding one on the continent then we ever will here.
 

Jon A

Member
Region
USA
The self steering issue I had was when using Origin 8's. After that experience I'd had enough of 26x4" tires.
That does seem to be a common complaint of those tires in most reviews unless you run them at high pressures--which as you note, removes the comfortable ride advantage. I just wanted people to understand different brands and types of fat tires vary widely in this regard--some are really bad, for others it's not an issue (as long as you aren't at snow-riding pressures on pavement, etc). With the cost of a medium, much less high end ebike, trying a new set of tires is pretty cheap in the big picture.

My bigger point is to get those considering a fatty to ask some questions prior to jumping in. As mentioned I have no problem with those using and enjoying them. I just wanted to present the case of somebody who didn't to avoid everyone from assuming they'll work well for everyone.
There's nothing wrong with that and I agree those are things to consider. They certainly aren't for everybody, but they are what the OP was asking about. Given their popularity among the cheaper commuter-style ebikes, he's certainly not alone.
I look at it like this, an electric fat bike can go everywhere a road and e-mtb can go......but a road bike cannot go everywhere an electric fatbike can. And an e-mtb will have trouble (think sugar sand roads and snow) where a fat electric won't.
Most definitely. After having a full suspension trailbike and a full suspension fatbike, when I decided I "needed" an ebike, it was no contest. Don't get me wrong, there are some things the trailbike is better at--if doing bike-park type stuff was my primary focus, a more typical eMTB would be a better choice. But as an "offroad transportation device," I much prefer the fat for the smoother ride and better traction--even if summer use was the only thing to consider.

Add winter use into the mix, and the choice was even easier. Fat biking in the snow is a ton of fun. But it's...exhausting! I cannot wait to do it with some (or maybe a lot) of motor help!
I like what you've got planned for your fully suspended fat Dengfu. Just be careful to not drop that bike!!
Yeah, I'll definitely keep that in the back of my mind.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
Jon,
I don't mind spending money to get the bike to behave as I want it to. I'm probably the last guy you would want to accuse of anything like that. I just don't like pouring good money after bad with little or no guidance. The tires on it now are the 3rd set (26x3"). Can you suggest something in the way of a street tire that doesn't feel like you're dragging something (like an anchor) on a rope in back of the bike when coasting? I haven't changed over to 27.5+ yet. If there's something out there that checks all of my boxes, I wouldn't mind checking them out/trying them before switching. -Al
 

m@Robertson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
That does seem to be a common complaint of those tires in most reviews unless you run them at high pressures--which as you note, removes the comfortable ride advantage. I just wanted people to understand different brands and types of fat tires vary widely in this regard--some are really bad, for others it's not an issue (as long as you aren't at snow-riding pressures on pavement, etc). With the cost of a medium, much less high end ebike, trying a new set of tires is pretty cheap in the big picture.
I would say "x2" on both points above. I was warned about Supercells self-steering by a rider who knew what he was talking about, but he was riding the 120 tpi version. I decided to give them a shot myself but I went for the 30tpi truck tire version. Zero self-steering where the 120's were flagged as self-steering at both hi and lower pressures. The reasons why can be pondered but the real thing to take away is that this issue can vary even across a single tire/tread with just the casing being the variable.

On tire pressure, I would agree 20 psi pretty much eliminates the comfort benefit, but having many thousands of commuter miles on pavement, I can give you a general guideline of 15-17 psi for the best balance of comfort and rolling resistance. When it gets down to 12 its probably time to refill, but depending on your tire you may want to bump it back up sooner. Honestly on Supercells I'd take that onto the higher side as those slick treads work great rolling fast and they seem to still have decent give to them; they stay comfortable on the higher pressure range. The Arisun Big Fatty in 30 tpi and the 4.8 size (really its a 4.3) is a great do-anything tire with knobs small enough to make it a fast roller. I personally GREATLY prefer some small knobs to give you that sound. Not for my benefit but because brainless pedestrians are much more likely to hear me coming and stay out of my way (bearing in mid I primarily ride on-street but walkers still shamble in random directions without looking). The knobs are better for safety as well as giving a boost in traction if the ground underneath gets wonky. Especially if I want to take a trail in the middle of my commute route. In 30 tpi they should last about 3000 miles. Surly Ednas in 4.3 are the same class of tire - do anything, best at nothing - but even more durable (and double the cost). Very high quality.

Fat tires without some research and some luck can be problematic for sure. Get the right ones on and they're a gem.
 

Jon A

Member
Region
USA
Can you suggest something in the way of a street tire that doesn't feel like you're dragging something (like an anchor) on a rope in back of the bike when coasting?
In addition to the well liked Jumbo Jims, Vee Tire has at least three that should be very quiet and probably fast rolling on pavement in the Chicane, Speedster and Zig Zag:


I haven't used any of those, so you'd need to look for reviews of each tire and/or try them yourself to see how they handle.

For those with a little more tread, there's the panaracer Fat B Nimble:


Reviews seem mixed on those....

For a bit more aggressive (trailworthy):

The Bontrager Hodag is extremely well liked by many people:


The 45 North Dillinger 4's are extremely popular for racing and known to be low rolling resistance (they can be found without studs):


My wife's bike has those in 26X4, studded, which I've ridden quite a bit. But I've only ridden them in snow so all I know is they aren't as good in the deep stuff as Vanhelgas or Wrathchilds I use on my bike. I don't think you want the Wrathchildren on pavement...unless it's covered in deep snow with lots of ice in spots! I (as well as many others) have noted the Vanhelgas are faster rolling than they "should be" given the size of their knobs and how much offroad traction they have (including deep snow) which makes them a pretty good one tire for everything, year round for more offroad focused guys. On smooth, glare ice you really need studs though, so even the D4's are better there with studs.

For tires available in both sizes, I'd say in general the 27.5's will be faster rolling with less self-steer, but that's certainly not a universal truth--sometimes the manufacturer will put taller knobs on the 27.5's, etc, so the designs aren't always exactly the same so try and find reviews for the exact size you're looking at.

Anyway, those are the ones that come to mind off the top of my head but there are plenty of people out there with a lot more experience than me with a lot of them.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
I like the look of the Vee Tire Chicane, found a set with black sidewalls (which I would prefer) but GEEZ, at 85 bucks apiece these things ain't cheap! Amazon reviews not mentioning anything about rolling resistance or self steer. I'll keep poking around, but going to need some convincing before spending another 170 bucks on tires.

No chance of a knobby or studded tire for my riding. I can't stand the buzz.

Thanks for sharing! -Al
 

TOOSLOW

Active Member
I run the jumbo jim 4.4 at 5-7 psi in the dirt, sand/gravel, and pavement, mostly though in single track. The Bluto at 72psi. The right combination of traction, cush, and rolling resistance. Always in turbo, even at those psi levels the jumbo jim tires still wear center heavy.
 

DandyD

Member
Region
Europe
Hi Louis,
Haibike Full FatSix happy owner here, since March 2017. Model year 2016 Haibike. As I find myself pedaling more on asphalt road shoulders around my home area than actual dirt trails, I think this bike is more than capable of delivering you the kind of ride with the power you are looking for. Especially in the newer models with the Yamaha PWX-2 and Sram Eagle gearing. The trick for you would be finding one in Europe as they pretty much sell out quickly as they do here in the States.

That Watt Wagons should be another strong consideration if Pushkar can ship to Europe. There is no more a proactive, enthusiastic and dedicated owner of a bike manufacturing business than Pushkar is. Check out that WattWagon's forum to see. The Haibikes, HaibikeUSA and all of the rest of them can take a few lessons on how to keep the customer an informed and happy one, by looking at how he conducts business.

The Full FatSix has a very loyal following in Europe, on the German pedelec forum. Here's the link: https://www.pedelecforum.de/forum/i...ab-2016-besitzer-jetzt-wirds-voll-fett.39510/ That site overall has alot of great information in it worth checking out.

On the flats with little elevation, I can get 40 miles on a fully charged 500wh battery, running in the High power setting of this Yamaha PW. This week, I picked up another new 500wh battery, making that 3 500's and the original 2016 400wh battery (still going strong at 100% capacity), for a potential of 1900wh for traveling long distances.

Here is a list of the things gone wrong in over 14,500 miles of active, 365 days riding (minus blizzards or tropical storms):

1. Speed sensor magnet loosed up on me one ride. I tightened it up and went my way.
2. The chain stretched after 11,000 miles, wearing the front chain ring teeth. I replaced the chain and front large chain ring.
3. Replaced the LCD's internal battery a year and a half ago.
4. Flat tires. Too many to count. It's part of the fatbiking on asphalt roadway shoulders game.
5. That's it. Now, I don't get air on the bike, I don't beat it to death. I wipe the bike down most ever post-ride. Lube up the chain links with dry lube before most every ride. I charge the batteries to 100 percent post ride after a good cool-down. I don't get hung up like many folks do about charging it to 80%.

I've done alot of things to make this a true, trail and road worthy, touring-capable, 24/7 road and off road bike. Front and rear Old Man Mountain racks that use the Robert Axle thru axle as the chief mounting point. All sorts of Ortlieb bags for this application or that application. A Schmidt SON28 dyno hub feeding a Schmidt Edelux II front headlight and Schmidt SON tail lamp; all the more to make me visible even in the daytime. Tannus Armours (before that, I was tubeless until I learned that a major cut in the tire and no spare tube in your gear bag means a long walk.)

Long post, sorry. Hope it helps. Poster @Haystacks has a nice looking fatty there as well. He knows like I know, that there is nothing like the comfort, sure handed stability and PLAIN OLD FUN that riding a fat bike, a GOOD fatbike, makes the rider feel. I think you will agree, once you decide on which one you are going to get. Good luck and keep us informed of your decision.

View attachment 92909
Local riding near home last week, a 30 mile jaunt using High power and one 500wh battery. Asphalt riding. That rear bag is an Ortlieb Office bag, sized large. Get two for the rear rack and you have pretty much enough capacity for your commute.

View attachment 92910
I took this pic on yesterday's ride east and back. Goshen Pond, Mullica River, New Jersey (USA) Pine Barrens. Asphalt road shoulder riding to get to this point. Rode on the deep sugar sand roads for a few miles before it was time to head home. 62 miles (99.72 km) total. That particular rear bag is the Ortlieb E-Mate, which has a carrier built into the bag to accept the Yamaha battery. For this trip, I brought my spare battery as I was moving at speeds from 11 to 19 mph. Not seen is the PearTune speed chip I installed. It's nice to go over the 20mph factory cut off speed every now and then. There really is no other bike that can ride on asphalt then jump onto a deep, sugar sand road like a good mid drive fat bike can. There is no other substitute......
Hi MIke, my apologies for the late reply..., you post is just great, informative and love the photos of you bike, sweet! I'll digest your info, and keep on searching..., whilst already in talks with WW..., lets see where we'll get from here... many thanks for your addition, and info..!
 

DandyD

Member
Region
Europe
Owner of a Bafang Ultra powered hard tail fatty here, w/19.2ah battery (most power available anywhere). Love the bike, but NOT thrilled with the "fatty" tires at all. The increased rolling resistance, in my opinion, is NOT offset by a better ride. Have since found there are better ways of doing both. Stock knobby tires are noisy when operated at speeds over 10-12mph on pavement. Fat street tires/slicks (with street tread) have a tendency toward self steering when operated on uneven pavement (unnerving at best). 4" tires make the bike look huge and feel heavy.

Currently collecting parts to convert to 27.5+ tires (27.5x2.4-2.8") for a great ride, AND greatly reduced rolling resistance - with NO self steering tendency. I bought a fatty after hearing how great they are and I consider that a total mistake. I just don't spend enough time where they do a really good job/are necessary - in sand and snow.

Not here to argue the benefits of 4" tires, only to share they didn't work out for me/my riding style. I would caution anyone considering them.....
AHicks, interesting post, and good to hear a different opinion... I see your point... many thanks! 🍀
 

DandyD

Member
Region
Europe
That does seem to be a common complaint of those tires in most reviews unless you run them at high pressures--which as you note, removes the comfortable ride advantage. I just wanted people to understand different brands and types of fat tires vary widely in this regard--some are really bad, for others it's not an issue (as long as you aren't at snow-riding pressures on pavement, etc). With the cost of a medium, much less high end ebike, trying a new set of tires is pretty cheap in the big picture.


There's nothing wrong with that and I agree those are things to consider. They certainly aren't for everybody, but they are what the OP was asking about. Given their popularity among the cheaper commuter-style ebikes, he's certainly not alone.

Most definitely. After having a full suspension trailbike and a full suspension fatbike, when I decided I "needed" an ebike, it was no contest. Don't get me wrong, there are some things the trailbike is better at--if doing bike-park type stuff was my primary focus, a more typical eMTB would be a better choice. But as an "offroad transportation device," I much prefer the fat for the smoother ride and better traction--even if summer use was the only thing to consider.

Add winter use into the mix, and the choice was even easier. Fat biking in the snow is a ton of fun. But it's...exhausting! I cannot wait to do it with some (or maybe a lot) of motor help!

Yeah, I'll definitely keep that in the back of my mind.
I follow you Jon A, as a good transporter which goes all the way at all times, a smooth fat bike rider it should be..!! :cool:🍀
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
Regarding the Vee Tire Chicane - the nice looking tire with street tread. I reached out to a tire dealer I've grown to trust, that has the tire in stock. Here's what they said:

"We have received some feedback that these do have some self steer-- The tread is fairly stiff to last longer on pavement."

Noteworthy is the fact the knobby tires don't seem to have this self steering problem. My bet is the difference between street tread with their big contact area on the pavement surface, and the knobby type with much less contact area, is just enough to cause this issue.

For me anyway, while maintaining an open mind on the topic, we're back to the 27.5" conversion plan. I do appreciate the info supplied. -Al

In addition to the well liked Jumbo Jims, Vee Tire has at least three that should be very quiet and probably fast rolling on pavement in the Chicane, Speedster and Zig Zag:


I haven't used any of those, so you'd need to look for reviews of each tire and/or try them yourself to see how they handle.

For those with a little more tread, there's the panaracer Fat B Nimble:


Reviews seem mixed on those....

For a bit more aggressive (trailworthy):

The Bontrager Hodag is extremely well liked by many people:


The 45 North Dillinger 4's are extremely popular for racing and known to be low rolling resistance (they can be found without studs):


My wife's bike has those in 26X4, studded, which I've ridden quite a bit. But I've only ridden them in snow so all I know is they aren't as good in the deep stuff as Vanhelgas or Wrathchilds I use on my bike. I don't think you want the Wrathchildren on pavement...unless it's covered in deep snow with lots of ice in spots! I (as well as many others) have noted the Vanhelgas are faster rolling than they "should be" given the size of their knobs and how much offroad traction they have (including deep snow) which makes them a pretty good one tire for everything, year round for more offroad focused guys. On smooth, glare ice you really need studs though, so even the D4's are better there with studs.

For tires available in both sizes, I'd say in general the 27.5's will be faster rolling with less self-steer, but that's certainly not a universal truth--sometimes the manufacturer will put taller knobs on the 27.5's, etc, so the designs aren't always exactly the same so try and find reviews for the exact size you're looking at.

Anyway, those are the ones that come to mind off the top of my head but there are plenty of people out there with a lot more experience than me with a lot of them.
 

TForan

Well-Known Member
I don't notice hardly any self steer with my V-Tire Speedsters. But, I'm more of a get on that motor scooter and ride than micro analyzing every aspect of riding a bike.