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Might be done bike commuting for the winter...

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    #16
    I had a quick 6 mile ride today right before sunset on a groomed snow machine trail in the mountains. 15 degrees, but no big deal for this almost daily snowboarder, I wear the same gear just a velcro strap to keep my Gotex pants out of the chain. Some pretty good slopes to deal with, but plenty of traction with the fat bike. Off the groomed stuff, no way, the snow is several foot deep this year here.

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      #17
      Interesting old thread I'm bringing up here but I see a few of the people are still around so maybe can get some updates on how its going or if there are any new products or thoughts?

      I have only done a few freezing temp rides so far and the pavement has for the most part been clear so don't have the studs on yet. I have noticed reduced range presumably from the ambient temps and maybe a bit from heavier cloths and wind. I have been running wolf packs and both rides down to the last red bar on one and killed it on the other. Summer I was doing 20 miles usually still one green bar on the meter. One cold ride was only 9 miles so not sure what happened there and the other 14. Packs were stored and charged inside so they were never cold and I run them in a triangle bag so once they were outside they are not getting direct wind. I was pretty much constantly using them so I would think their temp would not have dropped much.

      One thing I did notice is the 'fade' seems to be a lot worse when its freezing out. I normally don't really notice the fade when the pack gets low but there were a couple times I was doing a climb and looked down and saw i was in the red. Dropped the assist and started pedaling harder and by the time I got to the top it was back in the green where I expected it to be. Never had it drop like that in the summer. Pretty sure that is what killed it a mile or so later, I was on a low assist but had a bit of a hill. And this with 29x2.6 city knobs at about 20psi and clear pavement so no studs or extra fat to slow things down.

      I wasn't clear on what the difference on the 45nrth studs were, I thought the XL's stood taller but looks like the cup is the size of the shank instead of smaller? Would there be a reason not to get the XL's? So far I have bought 2 used pairs of 45nrth studded tires. Got 26x2 Gradavals which appear to be older and are either worn or have a more rounded steel stud. Right now those only fit one bike that currently has some missing parts. Other set is Nicotine 29x2.35's. These seem to be newer and have the concave studs. I also bought their T tool and a 100 pack of the standard carbide concave studs since both sellers said I will be loosing a few here and there especially on pavement.

      I have 3 BBSHD bikes, an antique 26" that I may not even try in the winter, A new build wally world 29er that I plan to be my pavement bike likely running the studded Nicotine's and will likely see most of the winter miles. The 3rd is my Pugsley which I do have a set of 29's for but am thinking of leaving it set fat with its Nexus 3 speed. Currently has the 26x4 Nates. Will have to get it out in some snow and see if I think it will need studs or not. Was interesting to read that the Vee's are decent, they for sure are a lot cheaper than the 45nrth options for a studded fat tire. Thinking this bike will mostly be for deeper snow and riding the park trails but I'm about 2.5 miles either way between bike parks so I will likely have to ride that on clear(ish) pavement to get to the parks.

      Any idea why there are not more studded fat tires? Just not a lot of need? The supplier I use most of the time has something like 70 different options that come up for studded tires but I think there are only 3 in a 26 bigger than 3.8.

      Last question is what do you snow guys think of fenders? As of this minute the Pug has full fenders installed. Can the fenders be a problem in deeper snow? The 29er doesn't have anything now but I am about to pull the trigger on some SKS Blumels 75's since those look to be about the only option for a wide 29 and that bike will see most of the miles on pavement which will likely often be wet in places not to mention the salt exposure that would be nice to keep off as much of the bike and BBSHD as possible.

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        #18
        I don't ride much anymore. I wore out he BBSHD after 10K miles. The armature spun on the bearing. I repaired it, but it took a few months to get the parts.

        While I was driving my car, I noticed how bad the sun glare was during fall/spring months. Couple that with almost no shoulders on some east/west roads, I decided it wasn't worth it. I was doing 22 miles each way almost every day, except the coldest days.

        Studded tires just slowed me down, and used more energy. It is one thing to ride a few miles on studded tires, it is another trying to do 25 mph over 20 miles. If it snowed, and the road/shoulders weren't clear of snow 100%, I wouldn't ride. I used Schwalbe big ben plus tires all the time. My studded tires just stayed in the garage.

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          #19
          Thanks for the update. I can see anything that slows you down or makes you less comfortable on a 22 mile one way commute a real deterrent. That is a long time to HAVE to be out on a bike twice a day. I'm mostly doing it to get off the couch. If they plow everything I was riding this summer I have several 12-15 mile loops I can do from home so hopefully on a full charge I will be able to do those.

          I'm assuming studded tires are going to be like the fats with a lot of noise and vibration?

          And for the sun glare you mean how easy it would be to not notice a guy on a bike?

          I have Big Apples on my 29's summer wheels and they are awesome tires. Had some friends ride my fully rigid Surly with those and said its a nicer pavement ride than their full suspensions.

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            #20
            Originally posted by 73Eldo View Post
            I'm assuming studded tires are going to be like the fats with a lot of noise and vibration?
            Using studded tires was like riding in molasses. More noise, but mostly more resistance to rolling. It took way more battery to go the same distance at the same speed. I upgraded to a 27 AH 52V battery, which helped.

            Originally posted by 73Eldo View Post

            And for the sun glare you mean how easy it would be to not notice a guy on a bike?
            Exactly. Cyclists are hard to notice with solar glare in driver's eyes. Strong blinking tail lights don't help much. There is about a 2 mile east/west section on my ride that requires me to ride part way in the road. Add inattentive drivers on top of that.
            Last edited by Galroc; 10-27-2020, 10:26 AM.

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