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Surly Wednesday the best bet under $1500?

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Surly Wednesday the best bet under $1500?

Old 12-13-18, 11:50 AM
  #1  
Kapusta
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Surly Wednesday the best bet under $1500?

Hello,
Looking to get my first fat bike. I want a rigid one.

My goal with this is to be able to get out on the trails for the 5 months of winter and/or wet fall and spring here in upstate NY. I don't see myself using this bike a whole lot during the drier months, so I am not that concerned about how well it does as a dry weather, high speed shredder (I have a 6" All Mountain bike for that). I see typical rides being on trails that range from easy and flowy to some more rooty, rocky and steep sections, in conditions ranging from icy to snowy to just mucky and miserable. There are also some forest service roads that are not plowed in the winter that I would like to put some miles on.

So I guess I want a bike that is pretty do-it-all in the wet, snowy or sloppy months.

I am a very experienced mountain biker, but have only demoed fat bikes on actual trails twice. Pretty sure they were both Salsas. And it was on dry trails.

My budget is $1500 max, but would really like to keep it under so that I have some extra in case I want to do things like get different tires.

There are a few bikes I can get particularly good deals on:
  • A new Surly Wednesday for $1,200
  • A new Surly Pugsly for $1,500
  • New Old Stock 2015 Pugsly for $1,100
  • New Old Stock 2015 Fugi Wendigo for ~$950 (I think there was only one model that year)
I am heavily leaning towards the Wednesday.

My question is whether there are other solid contenders that I should consider for $1500 or less that might be a better bet than the Wednesday?

Thanks.
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Old 12-18-18, 01:37 PM
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I'd vote for Wednesday (truth in posting: I'm a Surly fan). But take a look at Framed, they have a strong offering in the lower price-points and are popular around here (Framed is base near Minneapolis)
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Old 12-18-18, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Hypno Toad View Post
I'd vote for Wednesday (truth in posting: I'm a Surly fan). But take a look at Framed, they have a strong offering in the lower price-points and are popular around here (Framed is base near Minneapolis)
Yes, I got from the other thread you were a Surly fan

The local shop is getting a Wednesday in for me, though I am not obligated to buy it..... but I probably will unless it does not fit. Though in that case I would probably just get the next larger size of the same bike.

Last edited by Kapusta; 12-18-18 at 08:36 PM.
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Old 12-18-18, 03:56 PM
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Please post an update after your test ride!
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Old 12-18-18, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Hypno Toad View Post
Please post an update after your test ride!
Will do for sure. Won’t be until end of next week, though. Anticipation is killing me. Bike should be in tomorrow, but the shop is only open a couple hours each evening Mon-Thur, and I have obligations each night this week and then leaving town for 5 days.
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Old 12-18-18, 11:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
Hello,
Looking to get my first fat bike. I want a rigid one.

My goal with this is to be able to get out on the trails for the 5 months of winter and/or wet fall and spring here in upstate NY. I don't see myself using this bike a whole lot during the drier months, so I am not that concerned about how well it does as a dry weather, high speed shredder (I have a 6" All Mountain bike for that). I see typical rides being on trails that range from easy and flowy to some more rooty, rocky and steep sections, in conditions ranging from icy to snowy to just mucky and miserable. There are also some forest service roads that are not plowed in the winter that I would like to put some miles on.
Thanks.
Don't discount the fatty for the summer, it might just do better than you think
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Old 12-19-18, 05:37 AM
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Originally Posted by MarcusT View Post
Don't discount the fatty for the summer, it might just do better than you think
I’ve actually done two demos on Fat bikes on dry trails in the past. To be honest, I did not think either was particularly fun compared to my AM FS bike or my 29er HT.

However, those demos were 3 and 5 years ago, and it may be that a bike with more progressive trail geo (like the Wesnesday) may seem like more fun.

My thinking on this has changed a bit since I posted this. I decided that I actually DO care how it rides in the dry.. It would be nice if it could fill the niche that my Karate Monkey (rigid/HT 29er) has for many years; something to keep things interesting when the 6” AM bike starts to feel too easy and high-tech. I pulled a lot of parts from the Karate Monkey (including wheels) for my gravel bike build, and will pull even more to put on the Wed, so the reality may be that the Karate Monkey may be out of the picture for a while. Plus, I would like to keep my bike stable down to 4, and that means just two mtbs.
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Old 12-19-18, 06:33 PM
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Been riding a Wednesday since this past April here in Northern Michigan. It is a really great fat tire bike. It is used on ice, snow, sand, and gravel. Think you will like it.
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Old 01-03-19, 08:30 AM
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Got the bike in!

I was a little unsure of the sizing. My height (5’-10”) indicates a Med or Large, but going off the published geo numbers, I would fit the Small with a 50-60mm stem (based on how all my previous mtbs have fit). Interestingly, the only mtb I’ve ever owned that was a small - rather than a Med or Large - was another Surly (Karate Monkey).

The shop ordered a Small and let me take it out for a week to see if the fit was right. I just had to return it clean and unharmed.

Turns out the Small with a 60mm stem and a 720 - 750mm bar fits like a glove. I tried a longer stem to see if a Med might be worth looking at, but it was too long. The only thing that gives me pause is the 10-1/2” of seat post showing, but I am within the minimum insertion.

Did a number of rides around the neighborhood over the course of a few days as I messed around with stems, spacers, bar width, and saddle position. After settling (for now) on a 750mm bar width and the stock 60mm stem, I took the bike on a real ride on some real trails. Mostly old-school stuff with lots of rocks and roots with some climbing and descents. It was 32 degrees and the trails had a lot of leaves and partially frozen mud.

This bike was a blast. I don’t remember to many specifics about the fat bikes I demoed in the past, just that they were not particularly fun. Like driving buses. This was not like that at all, even though it is pretty slow pedaling compared to me standard mtbs.

I was really amazed how this just climbed through mud and muck with leaves without slipping, and - more importantly - not tearing up the trail.

So I will continue to mull this over for a couple more days to see if there is good reason to consider a Med (with a 40mm stem I should have the same fit), but otherwise I am going to buy this.

Here is a pic. The dork disc and reflectors have to stay on until I decide to buy it. The tennis ball is covering an uncut steer tube (need to leave that uncut for now as well).


Last edited by Kapusta; 01-03-19 at 10:00 AM.
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Old 01-04-19, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
Got the bike in!


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Old 02-23-19, 10:24 AM
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Well I ended up buying the Small. At 5’-10” it seemed odd that a small would fit so well, but the more I ride it, the more I know I made the right choice in size.

I did replace the stock 700mm bar with a 750mm Answer Pro Taper CF bar I had on another bike. It is a 20mm rise which means I don’t need so many spacers under the stem. Stuck my 13 year old Gravity Dropper post on it, and took off the reflectors and dork disk. After a few cold rides with some metal pedals, I bought a set of Chromag Synth composite pedals.

I am really quite happy with the bike. The only thing I see myself upgrading are the tires. These are very heavy and - unlike the rims - not tubeless compatible. I am eying a set of 45NTH Vanhelgas to set up tubeless. Between the tires themselves and the tubeless conversion, I’ll be saving almost 3lbs of tire/tube weight, or 2.5lbs if you factor in the sealant. I am not a weight weenie, but 2-3 lbs tire weight makes a noticeable difference.

For those who care, the bike stock was around 36lbs (with pedals), and is about the same now (the weight gain of the Dropper post must have been offset by the CF Handlebar). That is 6lbs heavier than my 5.5” FS All Mt bike (Turner 5-Spot), but I really don’t care. For me, it is not about going fast, but rather going at all.




Last edited by Kapusta; 02-23-19 at 10:37 AM.
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Old 02-24-19, 11:54 AM
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Compare prices of non QBP brands ? https://www.framedbikes.com/collections/fat-bikes
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Old 02-24-19, 12:03 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Compare prices of non QBP brands ? https://www.framedbikes.com/collections/fat-bikes
I looked into those. Did not exite me very much. And for $1,200, I just was not seeing a compelling alternative to the Wednesday which I actually got to ride and loved.

In any event, the horse has long left the barn.
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Old 02-25-19, 08:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
Well I ended up buying the Small. At 5’-10” it seemed odd that a small would fit so well, but the more I ride it, the more I know I made the right choice in size.

I did replace the stock 700mm bar with a 750mm Answer Pro Taper CF bar I had on another bike. It is a 20mm rise which means I don’t need so many spacers under the stem. Stuck my 13 year old Gravity Dropper post on it, and took off the reflectors and dork disk. After a few cold rides with some metal pedals, I bought a set of Chromag Synth composite pedals.

I am really quite happy with the bike. The only thing I see myself upgrading are the tires. These are very heavy and - unlike the rims - not tubeless compatible. I am eying a set of 45NTH Vanhelgas to set up tubeless. Between the tires themselves and the tubeless conversion, I’ll be saving almost 3lbs of tire/tube weight, or 2.5lbs if you factor in the sealant. I am not a weight weenie, but 2-3 lbs tire weight makes a noticeable difference.

For those who care, the bike stock was around 36lbs (with pedals), and is about the same now (the weight gain of the Dropper post must have been offset by the CF Handlebar). That is 6lbs heavier than my 5.5” FS All Mt bike (Turner 5-Spot), but I really don’t care. For me, it is not about going fast, but rather going at all.



Nice!!

I have to second the tires comment - Nates are heavy and too much tread for nearly all riding conditions. I've been riding Dillingers for winter and Fat B Nimble for summer.
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Old 02-26-19, 12:43 PM
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Fat-bike neophyte here: do you folks have any complaints about the Wednesday model? My cabin fever is mounting, and the wife has not only given me permission to buy a fat-bike, but wants me to. So now I'm weighing alternatives.
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Old 02-26-19, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
My cabin fever is mounting, and the wife has not only given me permission to buy a fat-bike, but wants me to.
Ha! That’s the way it went for me too.

I get grumpy when I can’t get outside and exersize for long periods of time, and these winters in Upstate NY were killing me since we moved up here a few years ago. I think I was starting to drive my wife crazy this winter, because when I got the idea to get a fat bike, she was all for it. She calls it my “Clown Bike”.
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