tomkaz

Help Me Buy & Outfit a Fat Tire Bike for the Beach

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4 mins ago, fatbikerjoe said:

I have 3 fat bikes.  One set up for the beach, one full rigid for training, and one full suspension bike. Don't ask me how many bikes I have total.  But, that being said, I spend my money on bikes and fishing mostly and some firearms stuff.  No coke, no hookers, no classic cars.  Once you start riding a fat bike you don't even want to go back to a regular mtb.  Being able to combine biking and fishing is awesome.  Easily allows me to cruise to isolated spots that would take much longer to walk to.  I'm mostly catch and release, but you may wish to bring a small cooler attached to a rack if you intend on keeping a fish.  Check out www.fat-bike.com

You sound like me.  I have 6 bikes :) (and a few guns)

Edited by ridenfish

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57 mins ago, tomkaz said:

^^^ All the recommendations are to use a DRY lube and apply at least the night before a ride. 

Belt drives are great but only work with an internally geared rear hub or on single speed bikes. The latter for most is not an option. If you use a good dry lube in a regular chain and rinse the sand after every outing you’ll be fine. Depending on how often you ride replace your chain at least once per year or put a couple chains in rotation. That way your cogs will last longer as they wear as your chain wears. 

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13 hours ago, beerdoh said:

Nope not slicks. I wouldn’t recommend slicks in the beach. There are lots of tire choices with varying tread depth and knobby size. You don’t need to go super aggressive but you do need some tread. 

Thanks.  Back in the day before 4 wheel drive most beach vehicles used bald tires so I thought that might work better for bikes too.  I'm happy with my Larry's the diamond tread isn't too aggressive.

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23 mins ago, YakDawg said:

Thanks.  Back in the day before 4 wheel drive most beach vehicles used bald tires so I thought that might work better for bikes too.  I'm happy with my Larry's the diamond tread isn't too aggressive.

 It’s funny you guys are discussing this, because I read a couple of articles last night on one of the mountain biking sites regarding sand tires. They were taking knobby tires and cutting off the center and off-center treads leaving just the exterior tread intact. They actually show photos of the before and after tires using Big Fat Larry’s and also show the sand prints. Seems to be quite a thing among sand guys to take $150 tire and mutilate for the purpose of riding on the sand. However, these articles were from 2013 and 2014 and more sand-specific tires have come out since then. 

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13 hours ago, TheNapeaguePissMan said:

In the Netherlands there is a huge beach racing scene. This has spawned some pretty cool inventions. Like others above said about not needing knobbies. Schwalbe tires makes a beach racing model that would be ideal on a fishing rig if you are looking to convert a bike you already have. I would try to get a front lowrider rack for the rods and maybe a basket for waders. Having weight on the front wheel will help balance weight distribution. 

Thank for the info.  Looks like they have beach tires with very minimal tread.  I saw a pair of cheap used Black Floyds I may pick them up and try them on the beach.  I tried a rack up front but found the weight affected my steering control in soft sand so I just use a rear rack now.  Thanks again for the input.

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OK, I finally came to a decision that will work for now and may or may not be worthwhile in the long run. 

 

First, I had a budget and, with the addition of building a 13' surf fly rod, my top-end of my bike budget got taken out. 

 

Second, I am just not sure how much usage I am going to get out of this ride so spending $1,000 for a "maybe" just did not make sense. 

 

Lastly, this bike will never be used in a traditional mountain biking sense both because South Florida does not have that type of typography (unless you ride at The Dump) and I am past the age of trashing hilly trails. 

 

So, drum roll please, I just ordered a Mongoose Hitch from Wallie World. The Dolomite was the original cheap bike thought and WMT has them for $199 right now, but the weight and cheapness of the bits, was a turnoff. For an additional $50, you get cutout rims, metal brake handles, a thinner frame (still steel) and a bitchn' red color scheme. From what I have read, the Hitch is 8-10 pounds lighter than the Dolomite. I will weight it when I get it set up. 

 

Immediate upgrades will be a sealed lower unit cup set ($15), replace twist shifter with Shimano Rapid Fire thumb shifter ($15), new handlebar grips ($22), new pedals with sealed bearigs ($25). I am taking it to the local bike shop for the replacements as well as brake calibration and lubing/re-lubing of the hub bearings. I will also have them put in some Frame Saver. 

 

Yeah, it does not have braze-ons except for a bottle cage, but I have found rear racks that don't need to be directly attached to the frame. Won't be as pretty, but....

 

I will start a new thread on the evolution of this ride once I pick it up next week. 

 

Future "upgrades" might include the following, some to reduce overall weight, some to improve performance, or both:

 

Alloy seat post

Alloy handle bars

Alloy handle bar stem

Better seat

 

 

Longer-term upgrades could be lighter tubeless tires, new rear derailleur, rear sprocket cassette and a new crankset. Those are the typical upgrades for those who go off-road so not sure I will care enough to make those changes (or justify the further investment). 

 

So is this penny-wise, pound-foolish relative to $600 LBS iRocker? Maybe, but only time will tell. But this way I have the budget for the 13' out-front fly rod and I won't have my wife giving me crap about spending another $1,000+ on fishing stuff. 

 

And if I trick this out as an angler's beach bike, I am confident I can sell it for what I put into it. I already have Josh (BlacktipH) intrigued by the idea. 

 

4cbc9324-14b5-474d-ae13-3f00daa37c35_1.d

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That should do just fine tomcaz.

 

Not sure I would even bother replacing the grip shift. I installed a grip shift on one of my fat bikes because I have no cartilage left in my thumb and it worked fine even on serious single track. I've since taken it off due to accidental shifts but that wouldn't happen riding on the beach. I would use those pedals until they fail. The stem looks to be alu but hard to tell with the bars and seatpost. 

 

Also make sure you put copious amounts of grease on the seat post so it doesn't fuse itself to the frame. Same goes for all the fasteners. Remove each allen one at a time and grease the threads. Also grease the quick release cams on the wheels and seatpost. 

 

Finally not all rims are advertised as "tubeless ready" but most tire/rim combos can be converted with the sealant plugging any holes. Good luck with the build!

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18 mins ago, beerdoh said:

That should do just fine tomcaz.

 

Not sure I would even bother replacing the grip shift. I installed a grip shift on one of my fat bikes because I have no cartilage left in my thumb and it worked fine even on serious single track. I've since taken it off due to accidental shifts but that wouldn't happen riding on the beach. I would use those pedals until they fail. The stem looks to be alu but hard to tell with the bars and seatpost. 

 

Also make sure you put copious amounts of grease on the seat post so it doesn't fuse itself to the frame. Same goes for all the fasteners. Remove each allen one at a time and grease the threads. Also grease the quick release cams on the wheels and seatpost. 

 

Finally not all rims are advertised as "tubeless ready" but most tire/rim combos can be converted with the sealant plugging any holes. Good luck with the build!

Thanks for the advice. 

 

Out of curiosity, would removable Loctite on screws have a protective effect? Greasing fasteners that could be subject to backing out with vibration does not seem "right", counter-intuitive almost. I understand the reasoning of why you want to avoid fusing, so would a barrier film of Loctite Blue do that job? 

 

I doubt the Mongoose rims are tubeless ready but, as you point out, you can covert almost any tube with Gorilla Tape and tubeless tire sealant. If I go that route, I will likely find some tubeless read tires with a higher thread count and much less weight. 

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17 mins ago, YakDawg said:

Congrats!  Have fun on the sand.

YD, this is my model of a functional beach bike and I will be ripping off your look. Might even find me some decals to make a ghetto Pugsley. 

 

IMG_0828.JPG

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26 mins ago, beerdoh said:

 

Not sure I would even bother replacing the grip shift.

The Mongoose twist shifters are notorious for being imprecise and crapping out very quickly. The Shimano shifter is a cheap upgrade, and it gives me a reason to replace the handgrips with Ergons.

 

DSC_2441.JPG

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Cheap solution to carry 4 rods.  I personally like rods to sit as low as possible.  Some places like Cape Cod Canal trees can catch your rod tips and...  Got these at Home Depot drilled hole to connect to frame and hole in the bottom for water to drain. 

IMG_5306.jpeg

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4 hours ago, tomkaz said:

The Mongoose twist shifters are notorious for being imprecise and crapping out very quickly. The Shimano shifter is a cheap upgrade, and it gives me a reason to replace the handgrips with Ergons.

 

DSC_2441.JPG

Ergon’s are the best. Only grips I’ll use. 

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4 hours ago, tomkaz said:

Thanks for the advice. 

 

Out of curiosity, would removable Loctite on screws have a protective effect? Greasing fasteners that could be subject to backing out with vibration does not seem "right", counter-intuitive almost. I understand the reasoning of why you want to avoid fusing, so would a barrier film of Loctite Blue do that job? 

 

I doubt the Mongoose rims are tubeless ready but, as you point out, you can covert almost any tube with Gorilla Tape and tubeless tire sealant. If I go that route, I will likely find some tubeless read tires with a higher thread count and much less weight. 

You can use locktite on the stem bolts. May already be on there. I generally use grease on everything and torque to spec. Never had a bolt back out. 

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3 hours ago, zpicker said:

Cheap solution to carry 4 rods.  I personally like rods to sit as low as possible.  Some places like Cape Cod Canal trees can catch your rod tips and...  Got these at Home Depot drilled hole to connect to frame and hole in the bottom for water to drain. 

IMG_5306.jpeg

Very inventive solution to low-hanging branch problem. My environment will be slightly different. First, it will be on open beach where dry sand and/or wet sand will be thrown around by the tires. Second, with nothing overhead but blue or gray skies, I don't have to worry about where the rod tips are.

 

I plan a rack, milk crate and rod tubes attached to the crate. Depending on the attachment point, I don't think my reels are going to be too much higher than yours, maybe 4 inches higher. 

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