Interbike 2012: Extra Wide...

Here is one for you bloggers in Alaska, Scotland, and Finland, and anyone else who rides the super-fat tired bikes. If Interbike is any judge of what may come, then we should be seeing more extra-wides in the future. Surly, 9 Zero 7, Origin8, Salsa, and even Phil Wood are all in the game, and were showing their goods. Some, like the Surly line (Krampus, Pugsley, Necromancer Pug, and Moonlander) have been around and you may be familiar with them. Same for the Salsa Mukluk. You may not be as familiar with the Origin8 Crawler, the 9 Zero 7, and certainly not the one-off Phil Wood. I will have more information on these and captions for the photos this evening; right now I have to run, it is almost time to head home.

Back now. A number of these fat bikes had been built-up with the NuVinci N360 continuously variable transmission (CVT) hub. Likewise, some rounded out the drivetrain with a standard chain drive, while others incorporated the Gates Carbon Drive belt system. I forget whose booth I was at, but I tried the NuVinci system and was very impressed. I will have more on this later. 

9 Zero 7 (above and below) was developed, tested and perfected on the snow fields, sand beaches, riverbanks and forest trails of Alaska. Plenty of opportunity to get it right, in other words. The build at the show incorporated both the NuVinci hub and Gates systems. Makes you wish you had a long sandy beach nearby, doesn't it?

Surly stuck with the traditional chain drive on the Krampus as shown above.

The Origin8 Crawler is one of the new entries in this specialty market. The rep said they were expected to become available late in the year, or early next year. They aren't in the catalogs, nor on the website yet either. As you can see in the three photos here, Origin8 went with NuVinci on their build as well. The bike comes with bosses for front and rear racks, and mechanical disc brakes. The gray paint finishe matches the gray of my Origin8 s.s., so I guess it is kind of their trademark color. I will be looking for more info when it becomes available.

The photo is junk (cursed interior lighting), and I don't remember which Surly model was being run on the backwoods rollers, but it was pretty entertaining to watch. Even though the logs made for a rather rough ride, once people were able to get up to speed those fat tires smoothed things out.

This (above and below) is the Salsa Mukluk, dirt and all. Many more bosses and mounting options - just take a look at that fork.

This is the Salsa Beargrease. This big dog is meant to be thrashed for a day. Lacking in bosses, you won't be adding racks, and so won't be taking this on a weekender (unless you can get by with frame and handlebar bags, and a backpack). This is a good looking bike, the blue is beautifully vibrant - almost a shame to get it muddy. Almost. Incidentally, the 45NRTH Husker Du tires seemed to be pretty popular with the builders.

Finally, the remaining photos are of the Phil Wood build. The world's first fully suspended fat bike. Why? Well, why not? If you possess that kind of knowledge, put it to use.  DownHill on a fat bike, seems like a juggernaut to me. Get out of the way, this thing is going to run. As I noted already, this was just a one-off, to see what it would take to get it done. I can't see anything like this going into production, dh requires a level of agility. Now find yourself a straight line, or a glacier, and you just might be able to set a new downhill speed record.


  1. Quite fancy the Mukluk in Orange but the Green looks quite nice too. How bright was the Orange.... bright or BRIGHT?! :)

  2. Gavin, not anywhere near neon, so I would have to say it was bright and not BRIGHT.


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