What do you HATE about your fat tires?

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
I had a dream. While asleep, I dreamt I mounted a fat tyre e-bike. Tried to move from the junction by pedalling and the e-bike wouldn't move! So I turned the throttle on, and could ride the e-bike. My impression was I was riding a light motorcycle. Yet, I tried to give the thing some pedalling. Fancy that: I felt no resistance on the pedals! I was ghost-pedalling!

I woke up to see my Vado SL still being there in my flat :)
 

JRA

Well-Known Member
I had two early pedal ones pass through my hands and decided they weren't for me. Couldn't come to grips with the self steering. I do like + size though.
 

Robbie_D

Member
Did you buy the wrong type of bike for your riding style?
I bought my Banana Boss e-bike only because it has a long seat like a motorcycle seat AND because i am able to attach a bike trailer to where the passenger foot posts are located. I remove one foot post and screw in my trailer. I couldn't see any fat bikes that were able to take my trailer.

I find fat tires way too supple. I had a flat in the rear tire and i was not even able to push the bike 10 feet before the inner tube came out, got jammed between the rim and the frame, and caused the tire to not turn - it was dragging. I had to try to carry the rear end of the bike with one hand and steer it with the other hand. No way! I have carpal tunnel syndrome in both hands.

I tried Slime in my fat tires but i am sure the fat tires are far too supple to allow the Slime to work properly.

I like my bike, but it's the fat tires i'm not crazy about. They look cool, yea, but i usually found spare tires and inner tube on abandoned bikes. I'll never find spare 20x4" tires or tubes on the street. So, now i have to spend $80 bucks CAD on each tire once per year. I never had to buy 26" and 28" tires and tubes before.
So fat tires are not my style.
 

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Jon A

Active Member
Region
USA
Cost, particularly the best winter tires.

Other than that, none. They are the best tool for the job I ask of them. Obviously a much different job than you ask of your bike.
 

Jon A

Active Member
Region
USA
Like, riding in deep snow, sand beaches and morasses?
Sure. And dirt--deep dirt, loose dirt, wet dirt, gravelly dirt, powdery dirt.... And rocks--big rocks, small rocks, slick rocks, wet rocks, loose rocks.... And vegetation--thick, nasty, tough vegetation (sagebrush, etc), tall, thick waterlogged vegetation... And not so firm ground--wet ground, marshy ground... And to do it while going uphill--low traction slopes steep enough my 29er MTB just hopelessly spins the rear tire.

And of course to do all that as well as possible in the winter, with snow on the ground, with the myriad of different depths and "types" of snow conditions that exist each winter.

In other words, the job for me is to be the most capable tool for riding up and over and through anything--providing the best possible traction, the best chance of making it through whatever I run into. And in less challenging conditions, to cover rough ground really fast while providing a really good ride with excess traction and stability providing a large safety margin.

And they still handle well enough and are fast enough to fulfill most of my high-speed MTB-type riding in a manor fun enough to keep my poor 29er in the garage more often than not.

But other than that, they're just terrible.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
Thank you Jon! I like your answer!
The point is the fat tyre e-bikes are mostly used by the urban folk because they think the thing is hip...
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
The reason I bought a fatty was regarding the ride some were talking about. At 71 I doubt seriously I could care any less about being "hip" (that thought laughable really, especially for those that know me personally). Still, it was an expensive lesson as they didn't work well for me either. Admitted, without hesitation, that most of my riding is on pavement or well packed dirt. Clearly those riding nothing but dirt are likely going to have a totally different experience. Went with the + tires which work much better for my purposes, and STILL provide a great ride.....
 

Mike TowpathTraveler

Well-Known Member
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My Specialized Fatboy got me Fat commencing late 2015 and I have ridden nothing but Fat ever since. I estimate I put some 5000 plus miles on her, 12 months of the year. Asphalt road shoulders to NJ Pine Barrens deep sugar sand. Sun of summer, snow of winter. Self steering? Your tire pressures are too low. On this bike, local asphalt riding meant 20 psi so I wasn't wasting energy fighting wrinkled sidewalls. Snow or Pine Barrens riding? Below 10 psi, right at that sweet spot where the bike does not "self steer".

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But then, one day in 2016 while looking on the internet, I found this site. And this guy named Court was road testing a fat tired ebike called the Felt Outfitter. And a Haibike FatSix. That got me to thinking...... the FatBoy is great, but I'm not getting younger and the idea of a battery and motor assisting me further up the trail or down the local road, was really appealing. One summer ride of over 90 miles on the FatBoy had me especially drained for days afterward, so not much further convincing was needed.

Atsion, NJ to Batsto, NJ 095.JPG

The Fatbike is the Jeep or Bronco of bicycles. Say you are pedaling along on some county road and off to your right is a trail with deep sand, kinda like the sand in this one-dimensional picture. With your trekking or road ebike, you say to yourself "Looks like a nice trail. Too bad I can't go exploring on it." When you are on your E-FatBike, you say to yourself "Looks like a nice trail. Let's see where it goes." An E-FatBike, properly aired down, floats on most deep, deep sand. An mtb with 2.3 inch tires will not cut it. I tried.

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But a FatEbike can't ride on roads! I read that all the time here and smile. With my Haibike Full FatSix, I can go everywhere you skinny tired ebikers can go. But I guarantee that YOU cannot go everywhere I can!;) Here is an all-asphalt road-run I did a couple years ago. Lewes, Delaware to Ocean City, Maryland, back to Lewes. 60 some odd miles. Here's a nice shot I got of the northbound Indian River Inlet, DE bridge. I like that shot. I passed quite a few road bikers on my way back north. Believe I was averaging over 16 mph heading back; spending a good amount of that time at and above 19 mph as I have a PearTune chip in my Yamaha PW motor....

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Pretty Day Lillies! On the early morning of another ride many folks here say can't be done on an E-Fatbike.......starting out from my Homebase near the Delaware River, straight east to the Atlantic Ocean at Mantoloking, NJ (many of you remember Mantoloking in the News as that was the area where SuperStorm Sandy took out the barrier island in the area off the bridge, thus, connecting ocean to bay.) All asphalt, took 3 batteries with me, one 400wh, two 500's. Just short of 100 miles and with battery power to spare.

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This was a 10 mile run taken into town last year on my local trail. 6 inches fell and after a day of sun, a nice crust was on the top. This was very, very tough going in this spot here, but still, got through. Not a fan of snow riding locally because of the road salt dropped on the local roads that lead to trails like this. But it can be done. This cannot be done on your skinny tired ebikes. A shame, cause winter riding brings out nature in a whole different light you do not experience in the summer. Another win for the E Fatbike! And what a contrast of pics from the previous one, taken mid-summer. A true 12-Month Machine!

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Back in the Pine Barrens again, those sugar sand roads lead to the end of the line, here.

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And a surprise encounter with this critter, whom I moved off the trail so he won't get run over by a passing Jeep or enduro motorcycle. These are just some of the things you are going to find when you go deep-off road with the best All Purpose Bicycle ever invented, the fat tired, electric assist mountain bike.

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"But....but.....but.......it's alot harder to pedal a fatbike compared to a skinny tired bike" No, it's not. A good mid drive fat bike will have a premium derailleur system with the latest, super-low gear cassette cogs that can allow it to climb any mountain or slog through any deep snow or sand with ease. Do NOT compare these drive systems by Shimano or Sram with a hub drive featuring a steep 7 gear cog with gear ratios that a Lance Armstrong might find agreeable with. "But you don't get as much range on a battery charge compared to my trekking machine" I can get up to 40 miles per full charge on my 500wh battery using the High Power Setting. "But, but.....a fat bike is only good for snow riding." My H-Bike is a 12 month/4 Seasons All Purpose Do Anything Go Anywhere Bike. Yours is not. "But, but.....those tires are noisy!" Yes, they may be to you. They are music to my ears. And they certainly get the attention of absent minded trail walkers who always turn to see what that approaching noise is. "But.....those tires are expensive!" I exclusively run on the Schwalbe Jumbo Jim and they are as pricey as any other premium bicycle tire will be. I got about 6 thousand miles on my rear JJ, just changed out for a new one 2 months ago. The front shows minimal wear. 'But, but......why would anyone want a bike that is only used in the winter months of the year and it's going to sit the other 10 months?" A fat tired ebike can replace every other bike in your collection. And as you see on my odometer reading here, I use my bike for every kind of riding I want to do.

I am here to tell you, that my personal experience runs completely counter to the Flat Earth/Anti Fat E-Biking Crowd that assumes control of these conversations. And I think I have the time in the saddle and the miles on the odometer, to back up my opinion!

:)
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
Clearly opinions differ, as do priorities, like noise for example. And how do those 4" knobby's ride with 20+ psi? Been there, didn't care for it, but respect those with different priorities....
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
Mike, no doubt you are a self-aware rider, and your Haibike is a sweet machine. However, I wouldn't think even a good fattie e-bike were an allrounder. Think of the energy you're spending to overcome the rolling resistance. Here are my metrics of a 104 mi/1900 ft elevation gain road ride, 2" Schwalbe Smart Sam on Specialized Turbo Vado 5.0:
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I guess I could have reduced the assistance to 35% and be within the capacity of 1000 Wh, or the equivalent of two 500 Wh batteries. Meaning, your third 400 Wh battery is wasted for overcoming the rolling resistance (simplistically speaking).

While you're using your fat e-bike to a good effect, I cannot even imagine that a single e-bike could do it all. For instance, I hated taking my 2.6" tyre Giant Trance E+ 2 Pro on-road. It was noisy and slow there. The e-MTB was behaving as if telling me "Please ride me off-road only!" And there were only two terrain types I wouldn't ride with the e-MTB: sand beach or fresh deep snow. Because I made marshes on my Trance, too.

Having said the above, I can tell you my 2" tyre Vado 5 can take me almost anywhere.
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December 26th, 2021. The trail had soon turned to a hilly singletrack. I have studded tyres on my all bikes during this winter.

Now, am I 100% happy with the "big" Vado? No. It is still heavy and shaky in rough terrain. So I ride my 17 kg (37.5 lbs) Vado SL wherever I can. A perfect gravel e-bike with flat handlebars. Because there is something Mike you didn't mention: the e-bike weight. What happens when the trail is blocked by a fallen tree and there is no way around it? I would personally not be able to lift a fat e-bike but I can lift my Vado SL with one hand...
 

Gordon71

Well-Known Member
The only thing I don't like is they are a bit noisy on pavement. I have a set of 26X4 street tires I'll try when my nobbies wear out. I had a regular bike years ago with skinny high pressure tires and could feel every pebble I ran over. I didn't ride that one much. I'll take a fat tire every time.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
I had a regular bike years ago with skinny high pressure tires and could feel every pebble I ran over.
That's why some smart people invented e-bike suspension :) I use Redshift ShockStop on my lightweight e-bike and can ride it comfortably even at high inflation, 35 or 38 mm skinny tyres.
As general information: almost all gravel cyclist ride unsuspended bikes with 38-50 mm tyres. It is because their bikes are lightweight, compliant, and that translates to the ride comfort. How much does your fat e-bike weigh, Gordon?
 

Taylor57

Well-Known Member
I started like many with the Lectric XP with 20 x 4 inch tires. I had no problem with them other than the added weight they offer. I ended up giving the XP folder to my son who created a bmx bike with front suspension thereby losing the folding aspect.
 

Tom@WashDC

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Loudoun County, VA.
I had never ridden a fat bike when I decided to purchase an inexpensive Mongoose Dolomite 26" hard-tail fat bike and install a Luna/Bafang BBSHD 1400W mid drive with front suspension, and dual 48V 20ah batteries. I completed my installation in January of 2021 and have been running with 4.5" tires. I love how my fat bike will go almost anywhere I point it, with impunity. I recently installed 2.8"(rear) and 3"(front) tires on my Aventon Level. I prefer the 3" tires for most of my high speed, off-road riding, and I'm currently building a bike with 3" tires and rear suspension. The 4.5" tires tend to float and slide sideways sometimes when I hit lots of bumps at high speed running sideways on a slope. They are excellent at low speed, a bit "squirrely" at high speed. The 3" tires have more of an edge, and tend to "bite" a bit more, with less floating or lateral sliding, especially when sideways on a slope. When I ride off into uncharted territory, through the woods, brambles, or over fields without any trails, the 4.5" fat tires coupled with the mid drive impart a sense of invincibility, which tends to get me in trouble, and consequently I get hurt a lot. :)

I will always have a fat tire bike with 4.5"+ tires.
I will always have a bike with 2.8"/3.0" tires. Different applications, YMMV.

Pardon the reposted video: I'm on my 4.5"tire Fatty, trailing my friend on his 3" tire Rockstar.

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Gordon71

Well-Known Member
That's why some smart people invented e-bike suspension :) I use Redshift ShockStop on my lightweight e-bike and can ride it comfortably even at high inflation, 35 or 38 mm skinny tyres.
As general information: almost all gravel cyclist ride unsuspended bikes with 38-50 mm tyres. It is because their bikes are lightweight, compliant, and that translates to the ride comfort. How much does your fat e-bike weigh, Gordon?
72lbs prior to any added gear. Not a problem as it carries me rather than the other way around. Not sure how light weight translates to ride comfort. As I said my lightweight regular bike was a whole lot less comfortable than my heavy fat tire bike which in turn is less comfortable than the Honda Goldwing I used to ride many years ago. Now that was a FAT tire bike.