Fat Bike Reviews

2016’s Hottest Fat Bikes – Part 3

Snow tamers from Fatback, Fyxation, 9:Zero:7, Moots and more
Check out these enticing snow tamers from Fatback, Fyxation, 9:Zero:7, Moots and more.

Check out these enticing snow tamers from 9:Zero:7, Moots, KHS, Fatback and more.

Editor’s Note: This article is part of the Mtbr Ultimate Guide to winter mountain biking, fat bikes, gear, apparel and trainers. In the first two months of 2016, we are taking a deep dive into all manner of cold weather mountain bike gear, with round-ups and reviews of fat bikes, tires, wheels, apparel, trainers and more. To see all the articles, head over to our Winter Guide Hub Page and be sure to check out part 1 and part 2 of our Hottest Fat Bikes Round-Up.

Fatback Corvus

Fatback Corvus

The Fatback Corvus is the brainchild of fat bike original gangster Greg Matyas from Alaska. The frame is unidirectional carbon fiber creation with room for up to 4.8” tires. The 460mm keep the bike stable, but not sluggish. Other highlights include a SRAM GX1 drivetrain and Avid BB7 mechanical brakes. If you want to spend more, the model range rises up to $6675, and includes such enticing add-ons as a Lauf suspension and Schwalbe Jumbo Jims 4.8” tires. Head tube angle on all the bikes is 69.5, maintaining a responsive and maneuverable feel. | Price: $2975 | More info at fatbackbikes.com

KHS 4 Season 5000

KHS 4 Season 5000

The 4 Season 5000 gets top-of-the-line spec at a price where some brands are just getting started. Frame and fork are carbon fiber with internal cable routing. The 2×10 drivetrain means you’ll never run out of gear. Girthy 4.8” tires float in sand and snow. Head angle is nimble 68.5 degree, with a fairly steep seat angle of 73.5. Chainstays are a lengthy 462mm to improve stability and provide ample tire clearance. Finished in matte black with no decals, this bike is a stealthy looker. Thick, shaped carbon frame tubes deliver a stiff but light frame ready to take on year round riding. And there are five models to suit just about any budget. | Price: $3299 | More info at khsbicycles.com

Moots 4 Frost Hammer

Moots 4 Frost Hammer

When you’re done trying different bikes, it may be time for a custom Moots. The heart of the bike is its titanium frame. And while $3975 is a steep price, we’re likely talking about a 10-year investment here. Head angle and seat angle are fairly steep at 69 degrees and 74 degrees respectively. And the bike sits low, with a 12.1” BB height. Tire clearance is up to 4.8” and the bike is adaptable to 3.0×29+ for summertime use. Lines on the frame bend and curve to allow for better standover clearance, and it has a 100mm threaded bottom bracket, so there are no creak concerns. Custom options include rack eyelets, dropper post routing, third water bottle location, and an etched and engraved finish. | Price: $3975 | More info at moots.com

Norco Sasquatch

Norco Sasquatch 6.1

This Norco fat bike screams value — and fun. The price is on the lower end of the spectrum, yet the bike includes a 100mm RockShox Bluto. Rigid forks are fun and all, but get going at high speed with a few jumps here and there and you’ll realize that benefits of travel and rebound control on snow. Another notable spec highlight is the inclusion of a higher end 1×11 drivetrain. And the downside of inadequate low gearing is addressed by a 26t Race Face chainring. That may come at the sacrifice of high speed pedaling but Norco decided that it’s outside of the Sasquatch’s domain. Customizable length stems all the way down to 35mm complement the 760mm bar. Norco also sells 24” models for kids and e-bikes for those who want a little uphill assist. | Price: $2575 | More info at www.norco.com

Continue to page 2 for more of 2016’s Hottest Fat Bikes »
About the author: Jason Sumner

An avid cyclist, Jason Sumner has been writing about two-wheeled pursuits of all kinds since 1999. He’s covered the Olympics, Tour de France, MTB world champs, and dozens of other international cycling events. He also likes to throw himself into the fray, penning first-person accounts of cycling adventures all over the globe. Sumner has also done extensive gear testing and is the author of the cycling guide book "75 Classic Rides: Colorado." When not writing or riding, the native Coloradoan can be found enjoying life with his wife Lisa and kids Cora and Tommy in and around their home in the MTB Mecca of Crested Butte.

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  • Andy says:

    Nearly 6k for a rigid fatbike with no suspension? Is that a joke? LOL

  • Phil says:

    + plus awesome twitchy handling. I wonder if it self steers badly. Of all the fat bikes out there there is very little discussion that I have seen regarding optimal geometry for these beast. My Fatback is terrifying going down anything steep during the summer compared to my Turner Burner. Designed primarily to be stable loaded for long distance bush riding its anything but playful. A buddy of mine sells hell out of the Ventana El Gordo because it has such good handling characteristics.

  • Brian says:

    Would recognize that mountain anywhere, good ol Crusty Butt

  • Joe says:

    I could not plunk down almost $6000 for a rigid/rigid bike of any kind. I thought road bike prices were bad. I don’t quite understand the high cost — you can purchase precision machined carbon fiber full suspension mountain bikes for that price. Perhaps it is economy of scale? Yikes!

  • Stumpy says:

    I bought a Pro Trail on their ‘Fat Savings’ sale. It’s awesome…

    Except, the bottom bracket squeaked like a overweight rat. Turns out that the assemblers used very little grease when they stuck the bottom bracket in the frame.

    And the reviewer was totally correct, the same frame is shared between the types of Fatboys. I have the front derailleur mounts of the 2×10 lower end rides. I guess, ‘just in case’?

    But the troubling issue for me is that out of two Specialized rides, I have had two issues, rather significant issues, with them. I’m batting 100% with issues.

    The Fatboy had the bottom bracket issue, and a Stump Jumper FSR Comp had an issue with the hub falling apart. Yeah. The wheel wouldn’t spin more than two or three revs after I really gave it a try while it was on a work stand.

    They make quality frames, and actually quality bikes, but I am thinking that I have to go through each one after I buy it to see what the assemblers missed, or cut corners on.

  • kathy ellis says:

    I have a Fatboy 415 FSX from 2000 that needs some parts but I can not find anywhere to get them, Can anyone help me?

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