Your regular bike works well on a smooth road or pavement. But does it do the same in a rocky path? Mountain bikes are specifically made for mountains. But what if you need a bike that has the best of both worlds? Well, there is one such bike for you. We’re talking about the very popular fat bikes! A fat bike is a bike that has widely sized tires and can function in any extreme condition, including muddy, sandy, and snowy pathways.
Want to find out what is a fat bike like? Then go ahead and keep on reading!
Why Get a Fat Tire Bike?
Let’s start with answering a very basic question. Why buy a fat bike? Surely, as a consumer, this might be a curious query of yours.
Mainstream bikes are definitely more popular when compared to fat bikes. But what makes a fat bike stand out are the exclusive things it has to offer you. It was only geared towards professionals and enthusiasts in the beginning. Naturally, it can perform much better in harsh conditions.
While normal mountain bikes perform well in the mountains, they do not necessarily perform the same in other territories. A fat bike, on the other hand, has proven to be solid in mountainous regions, sand, and even snow.
Let us weigh the pros and cons of a fat bike to understand its need better.
What are the benefits of riding a fat bike?
Fat bikes are bicycles that have large, wide tires to give them a cushioned ride over snow and sand. Fat bikes have a low center of gravity, making them easy to maneuver in any terrain.
The benefits of riding a fat bike include:
- Since these bikes require somewhat more energy to ride, it works as an exercising activity for the riders
- Able to withstand most territories, including sand and snow
- Has a simple configuration that is easy to use and maintain
- Flattening of tires provides grip and support in rough territories
- Suitable for almost all conditions and weather
- A more comfortable ride due to the larger, wider tires
- Greater stability in snowy or icy conditions
- They’re great for off-road riding because they’re so stable on loose surfaces like sand and gravel
- While fat bikes are great for snowy and icy terrain, they may also be too heavy in wet sand or mud
What are the drawback of a fat bike?
A fat bike is a type of bicycle that has large tires in order to handle rough terrain. However, they are not as efficient as regular bikes and may be difficult to ride.
The disadvantages of a fat bike are:
- As these bikes are heavier, it requires more strength and time to reach the destination
- Has a single-speed configuration that projects the performance solely on the rider
- These are expensive
- It can be hard to ride because the larger wheels require more balance and more effort from the rider.
- Fat bikes are heavier than regular bikes, which makes them harder to carry on long distances.
- They have lower speed ratings than other types of bicycles.
What Are the Advantages of a Fat Tire Bike?
There are plenty of advantages of a fat tire bike. So in case if you’re wondering- what is a fat bike popular for, check out the following advantages.
Definitely, it is the tires that set a fat bike apart from a regular one. These “fat tires” are designed in such a way that more traction is produced while riding it. This feature gives an upper hand while riding on rough surfaces.
Read More: 9 Best Fat Bike Tire
One of the essential aspects of a bike is the frame. The material of the fat bike frame decides how strong the bike will be. However, since tires are already outweighing the fat bikes, you can cut some slack on the weight of frames. You can easily choose lighter frames for these bikes.
Most fat bikes have steel cables activated on their brakes. Suppose you are stuck in a snowy region because your brakes have been damaged? You can easily get out of that situation. Using mechanical methods, you can easily repair these kinds of brakes.
With fat bikes, it’s not just about the wide tires. It’s all about the pressure produced by those tires. Your contact with the surfaced will be regulated by this pressure. Since a fat bike tire is wide, it produces less pressure in comparison.
We suggest you always inspect the tire pressure before embarking on any journey with your bike.
Also Read: The Ultimate Guide to Fat Bike Tire Pressure
Although fat tire bikes have wide tires, you do not want them to have too much floatation. Four inches is the ideal limit here. Any more than that will cause your ride to be more uncomfortable than enjoyable.
If you maintain the limit, you will be able to have a comfortable ride. Remember, floatation should be maintained according to the territory.
Even though you are getting a fat bike, which is technically known for controlling your contact with the ground, you cannot ignore the importance of fat bike suspension. It is the prime factor behind the regulation with ground-contact. But the great thing with fat bikes is that you don’t need a suspension fork.
The rim width is especially important because it needs to complement the width of your tire. If you are considering a tire of four-inch width, you can get rims between the width range of sixty millimeters to eighty millimeters. Just like the width of the tire, the rims should be maintained within a range.
If you are a person who is not comfortable with the idea of tubeless bikes, a fat bike is for you. It is quite difficult for fat bikes to be tubeless. Besides, it does not even do much to improve the performance of this particular bike.
Are Fat Tire Bikes Harder to Ride?
This is quite a tricky question. It is because the answer to this question is purely circumstantial. Where you are riding your fat tire bike is what depends here.
Surely, if you simply consider pedaling a fat bike and a regular bike, it is more difficult with the former. It is because a fat bike tire is heavier than a normal bike tire. So in a normal path, it is naturally harder to ride a fat bike.
But the calculation changes when you try to ride a bike in a rough, snowy, or sandy area. In these territories, fat bikes absorb the vibration from the path that regular bikes don’t. Regular bikes submerge in these surfaces, but fat bikes move easily.
So, if you are using a fat bike on a normal territory, it will be harder to ride. But, if you use it on a rough territory, it will prove to be an easier ride. Again, If you want to get clean riding then you should install fat bike fenders!
Also Read DIY Fat Bike Fender
How Much Does a Fat Bike Cost?
Fat bikes are more on the expensive side. But surprisingly enough, they do not have a fixed price range. The range is not even close. You will find fat bikes of different price points in different places.
Now you could find more inexpensive fat bikes in retail stores. But remember that these bikes won’t last long or perform well. Like a regular mountain bike, the price of a fat bike depends on its specifications and the quality of the material.
Our advice to aspiring fat bike owners would be to research well before buying one. Once you look around a little, you will get a better picture of the pricing scenario.
Are Fat Bikes Worth It?
The answer to this question, too, depends on where you will use it. At this point, you are probably not questioning what fat bikes are good for. Rather, you are weighing its high price with its benefits.
If you are serious about fat biking and will end up riding it on rough surfaces, you should overlook the price and get one. Because for a rough rider, buying a fat bike is much more cost-friendly than spending thousands on repairing and maintenance of a regular bike.
However, if you are a regular biker, a fat bike might not be worth the cost. So, figure out your needs first.
Fat Bike Brands– Top Brand
While there are many brands out there that are bringing top-quality fat bikes, some brands are at the top of their game. Here is a list of top fat bike brands.
No top list of fat bike brands can be complete without mentioning Surly Bikes. Of all its ranges, the “Ice Cream Truck” is well known for its liability and performance under cold weather. There’s a reason why this product is on top of every list since its launch!
Unlike Surly Bikes, Mongoose is not known for only one product. Whether it be the Dolomite, the Argus, or the Malus, this brand has shown quality work in every launch. It’s relatively cheaper than average fat bikes. But, there is no compromise on quality.
Rad Power Bikes
We’re talking about a brand that has won accolades for its bikes. Rad Power Bikes is not only impressive in terms of performance but also innovation. It came out with electric bikes that are both stylish and comfortable. The RadRover is a bike you would want to pick up from this brand.
Trek has achieved quite an iconic status in the world of bikes. Apart from all the exceptional features, this brand is well known for putting out bikes that prove to be a good value for customers’ money. Just like its regular bikes, it is reliable in the case of fat bikes.
Salsa is a sister company of Surly Bikes. Like Trek, you will find bikes that are good value for the money here. Since the past century, this brand has been working on building its status. With fat bikes from this brand, you will get different configurations too.
Check Out One Of The Best Fat Bike : Mongoose Dolomite Fat Tire Bike
Do I need to be fit enough to ride my fat bike before I can start using it for exercise purposes?
It depends on the type of fat bike that you have. If it is a cross-country style, then yes, you will need to be fit enough for riding your fat bike before using it for exercise purposes.
However, if it is a mountain bike style or any other type of bicycle with large knobby tires and low gearing ratios, then you will not need to be as fit because they are designed to go uphill and downhill more than flat surfaces.
What is the point of a fat tire bike?
A fat tire bike is a type of bicycle that has large, knobby tires in order to provide better traction and stability.
The point of the fat tire bike is that it offers a more comfortable ride than a traditional road bike. It also provides increased comfort over rugged terrain and improves performance on loose surfaces such as sand or snow.
These types of bikes are also commonly used for cyclocross, dirt jumping, mountain biking, and downhill racing.
What defines a fat bike?
A fat bike is a type of bicycle that has big tires, a low gear ratio, and wide handlebars. They are also known as fat bikes or jumbo bikes.
Fat bikes have evolved since then into a variety of different types based on various criteria such as frame size, wheel size, tread width, tire width and suspension design.
The most common features of a fat bike include having tires in the 30-inch (762mm) range, being able to travel easily up steep slopes but still be stable on flat ground and a very low center of gravity for increased control when climbing hills.
So that was all we had for this piece. Now you not only know what is a fat bike like but also know about its details. We hope this study of fat bikes was educational. Before making your final purchase, refer to our article and do your research. Good luck!
FAQs on Fat Bike
Do I Need a Fat Bike Tire?
Whether you absolutely need a fat bike tire or not depends on the type of rider you are. If you ride on rough terrains, you need a fat bike tire.
Are fat bikes fast?
Fat bikes are fast in extreme territories. But in normal paths, they are slower than normal bikes.
What Is Fat Biking?
Fat biking is the act of riding a bike that has fat, specialized tires. Simply speaking, fat biking is the use of a fat bike for riding in different areas.
Why Ride a Fat Bike on the Road?
Fat bikes perform exceptionally well on harsh surfaces. In the case of riding on the road, it can be done for exercise purposes.
What’s the catch?
Fat bikes are pretty expensive as well as heavy. They are not suitable for everyday use.
Can a Fat Bike Be Your Only Bike?
You can make a fat bike your only bike, only if you can handle it. It is not built for regular road use. But if you have your needs cleared out, you can certainly make it your only bike.
Are fat Bikes Good for Beginners?
Yes, fat bikes are good for beginners. It only has a single-speed that depends completely on the rider. Hence, beginners can easily ride it.
Can You Ride a Fat Tire Bike On Pavement?
You can ride a fat tire bike on pavement. But, it won’t be as comfortable or speedy as it would be with a regular bike.
Are Fat Bikes Dead?
Fat bikes haven’t really been able to replace good old regular bikes. But, they are far from being dead. There are still many users who enjoy riding fat bikes.