Friday, September 5, 2014

Salsa Mukluks Arrive!

Possibly the best color on a fat bike I've ever seen.
The Salsa Mukluks are arriving and in this post I will detail what we have in so far. The Mukluk is Salsa Cycles mainstay fat bike. The fat bike with versatility and all-year-around use designed right in.

Common to all Mukluks is the aluminum, 170mm rear spaced frame with Alternator Drop Outs. This frame with these special, swinger type drop outs, allows for several drive train set ups. You could go single speed, use an IGH hub, (internally geared hub), or utilize the drop outs as a way to change your wheelbase for different handling characteristics.

These frames also feature continuous cable housings to seal out dirt and grime. All Mukluks have 31.6mm seat posts so you can easily swap in a dropper post for more versatility. Rack mounts are standard, as are the triple bosses on the down tube which support Salsa's Anything cages or a water bottle cage in two different positions. There are also water bottle bosses on the seat tube on Med-XL sizes, and one under the down tube.

Mukluk 3 in White w/Red & Blue anodized accents
Mukluk 3 in Ruby Red
The Mukluk 3 has been seriously upgraded this year and remains the same price as it was last year. Upgrades include the brakes, which are Avid hydraulics this year.  Wheels are upgraded to Holy Rolling Darryl rims. Ten speed SRAM drive trains are upgraded from last year's 9 speed set up.

The Mukluk 3's get the Salsa Bearpaw Aluminum fork with Triple Bosses for two Anything Cages or two water bottles. A rack could also be subbed in as an alternative set up.

NOTES: The Muk 3's are seriously good deals. Salsa Cycles is a leader in the fat biking market place and competition has refined the breed to give customers of the 2015 models the best value in a fat bike yet from Salsa. The look of the past Mukluks has been okay, but this years graphics and paint jobs are the best, in my opinion, that Salsa has yet put out. On any of their fat bike models. That Ruby Red may be the prettiest fat bike color ever.

The Mukluk 2 in this crazy sparkly Orange

 The Mukluk 2 is also upgraded for 2015, and- obviously- the fork is the new Rock Shox Bluto suspension fork. Salsa Cycles had a big hand in getting this fork produced and were able to plan geometry and the resulting handling ahead of time for their fat bike range. For instance, last year's Mukluks were all suspension fork ready. Not convinced a fat bike needs a suspension fork? Read this. My buddy MG tells it like it is and he's a really good mountain biker.


The Mukluk 2 also brings a refined drive train with Surly's OD crank set and SRAM components featuring the Type 2 derailleur which has a clutch mechanism to keep the cage from whipping the chain over rougher terrain onto the chain stay. The result is a much quieter ride, and less dropped chains.


NOTES: The Muk 2, second only to the Ruby Red Muk 2 for the best paint job ever, is a serious all terrain, all year around fat bike. You could enjoy maximum traction, crazy cornering grip, and all with more control than ever via the front suspension fork. Of course, you can easily swap to a rigid fork for a lighter weight set up.


Come on down and check out our growing fat bike corner in the shop and look for more posts coming soon on our new arrivals.


Friday, August 29, 2014

Farley 6 Is In!


We have Trek Farley 6's in stock now at Europa Cycle & Ski. This is only the first of our "fat bike fleet" which should start trickling in now over the next month or two.

The Farley 6 is Trek's entry into the fat biking world. The Farley 8, which we will also have, will be Trek's top of the line fatty for '14/'15. The 6 is a great bike, and calling it "entry level fat bike" is really an insult. Check out the features to see why.....
  • Trek hydroformed aluminum frame and fork with the Convert rear through axle and braze ons for racks front and rear and even fender mounts!
  • Bontrager "Hodad" tires which are 26 X 4.0 and really are that big. 
  • Rims are Sun Ringle' "Mulefut" 80mm wide with cut outs.
  • Race Face crankset, 2X- with 30mm pipe spindle, outboard bearing bottom bracket
  • Shimano XT Cluth Type rear derailleur with a 10 speed cassette. 
  • Avid Elixir Hydraulic Brakes
And the price? Two years ago a fat bike like this would have cost you close to 3G. Now you can walk out the door with this bike for under $1800.00 (plus tax) There really isn't anything "entry level" about this rig.

Stay tuned for more fat bike announcements coming soon!!

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Fat Cometh!

A full suspension fat bike will be at Europa Cycle & Ski soon
We've placed our orders and following is what you can expect to see at Europa Cycle & Ski in the coming months for fat bikes. It will be the widest selection of fat bikes we have brought in to date.

Leading the charge will be the wildest fat bike produced to date, the Salsa Cycles Bucksaw. A full suspension fat bike utilizing Dave Weagle's Split Pivot design. This will be for the rider looking for the most traction mated with one of the best full suspension designs produced today. Go over stuff that you never imagined you could. Go up stuff you never had the traction for before. Ride it all year, anywhere. The Bucksaw 2 will be as shown in this stunning gold-ish orange color.


The Beargrease XX1 and X01 will be represented as well. Last year this was the hottest selling model we had on the floor. With a light, nimble carbon fiber frame and fork, this was the lightest production fat bike you could get. Now it's even better. Two spec levels to choose from too. 

 
The Beargrease Aluminum model is one we're pretty excited about. Same great Beargrease geometry and handling, same carbon fork, (The Makwa), and set up with a wide ranging 2X10 drivetrain with Marge Lite rims and 45NRTH tires. At well below three grand, this may be the best value in the line up. 

 The magical ride of titanium mated to the Rock Shox Bluto fat bike fork? Amazing! And with a 1 X 11 SRAM drivetrain, this will be a crazy good fat bike for all year around explorations. Fitted with the Alternator drop out, the possibilities open up for tailoring the bike to your specific adventuring needs, or just know it is there if you need it to bail yourself out of trouble should you find it necessary to go single speed. 


 The Mukluk line up will also be represented by the Mukluk 2. The same Mukluk 2 you know and love with a color change, Rock Shox Bluto fork, Holy Rolling Darryls, and Nate tires. Not just for snow and sand anymore, but a capable, all year around trail bike. 

Looking to just get in the door on fat biking? Look no further than the capable, versatile Mukluk 3. This year the upgrades are hydraulic brakes, Holy Rolling Darryls, (last year these had undrilled rims and mechanical brakes), a Salsa Bearpaw aluminum fork, and a 2X10 drivetrain highlight the changes. All for the same cabbage as last year's model! 

Whoa! The bike that blew us out of the water was the brand spankin' new Salsa Blackborow. Not a Mukluk! This is a brand new model featuring the widest rims and tires for the most flotation possible in fat biking. Based on the 197 X 12mm rear axle standard, and a new 150mm wide front fork, (Rock Shox Bluto compatible wheel!) and through axles front and rear, this is the epitome of expedition/back country/do anything fat biking today. Blackborow features a full range 2 X 10 drive train and geometry dialed in for maximum stand over clearance and maximum stability in soft conditions. It doesn't get any fatter than Blackborow!

I'm throwing this one in there to show ya'all I am puttin' my money where my mouth is. The Blackborow DS, (Dingle Speed ya'all!), will be my fat bike for the coming Winter commutes and trail bustin' in the Cedar Valley. It's a variation of the Blackborow more fine tuned for bushwhacking fun, which is what I like to do come Wintertime. Dingle Speed? Yep! A two chain ring/two rear cog drive train. Each cog/chain ring combo adds up to the same total teeth, so you don't have to change tension on the chain to use either the high or low ratio. No derailleur bits mean nothing to get iced up or whacked off in the under brush. We won't be bringing in another one for the floor, but if ya see mine and want one, let us know! We can order this or any of the Salsa fat bikes, (or other fine bicycles), if we don't have the size or color you want. 

That's it for the Salsa stuff. Stay tuned for a separate post on the Trek fat bikes coming in soon to Europa Cycles!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Salsa 2015: Fat Bikes

The 2015 Beargrease 2: Alu Beargrease returns!-$2599.00
Saddledrive in Utah has just concluded for QBP, which is the dealer only show our distributor has every Summer. The new Salsa Cycles rigs have been revealed and in this first post we will get a look at the newest fat bike offerings.

New for 2015 are three fat bikes, the Blackborow, the Bucksaw, and the Aluminum Beargrease, (which really is a returning model). Continuing models include Beargrease Carbon and Mukluk line ups (with suspension forks!)

So enough with the words! Let's look at the new rigs first!

Beargrease Carbon 1- $3699.00
The range topping Beargrease XX1- $5599.00
Range topping Bucksaw 1- $4999.00
The Bucksaw 2- $3999.00
The Mukluk Ti for 2015- Now with suspension!- $4899.00
The Mukluk 2 also will sport a Rock Shox Bluto fork- $2999.00
The Mukluk 3's get Holy Rolling Daryls and hydraulic brakes- $1899.00
The Muk 3 also is available in the stunning Ruby Red
The Blackborow 1- Biggest tires on the widest rims! $2799.00
Blackborow DS- 2 speed bushwhacking machine. $2299.00
So- There ya have it! The line up for 2015 from Salsa Cycles in terms of fat bikes. I'll be bringing you some finer details on the bikes later. Stay tuned!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

So- You Want To Ride RAGBRAI?

The "perfect" RAGBRAI bike looks like this
RAGBRAI is happening this month, and if you are going, you'd better have all your ducks in a row already, so this post won't be for you. This post will be for those who are about to decide whether to tackle this ride someday.

This is also a good post for anyone looking for a "road" bike, and wants the best bike for the recreational, versatile type of riding.

First off- let's get something out of the way here. Taking a skinny tire equipped, racing bike design and converting it to RAGBRAI duty is NOT the best thing to do, despite the urgings of your "RAGBRAI veteran" rider. Yes.......you could do what they say. Yes.......it's worked for years for lots of folks. That said, there is a better way to do the job, and here is why......

  • Bicycles with drop bars and capable of only running 25mm or less wide tires are generally designed from a racing perspective. This does NOT mean it is a "fast bike". It only means it was designed from a racing perspective and will work best if you want to race a bike in a criterium or on a road race. I've noticed something about racing bikes at races- They don't use racks, kickstands, or aerobars in criteriums. Get the picture? In other words- You probably wouldn't put a trailer hitch, running boards, and a touring rack on a C-7 Vette, because.....it's a race car for the street. Same deal with a "racing bike" folks. Same deal.
  • If you want comfort, versatility, and accessories then a racing design is the last bike you want to look at despite all the promises of "speed". Look folks- speed comes not from the bike, but from the rider. Okay, now that this dirty little secret is out in the open, let's drop the testosterone and look at what folks really should have for a ride like RAGBRAI......
Trek's Crossrip bikes are also perfect RAGBRAI rigs.
Accessories: When we sell a bicycle for a RAGBRAI rider, they typically want to put a rack on there to carry "stuff", and many even want to be able to pull a trailer or haul a "trail behind" bike to take a kid along. A racing bike has a lightweight rear wheel meant to handle a single rider that weighs about 180lbs. So......yeah, that wouldn't be smart to throw a rack on to carry a load. (Unless you like broken spokes, wheel issues, or wearing out hubs fast.) Many folks like kickstands. Racing bikes cannot handle kickstands because their tubing is optimized for riding at the lightest possible weight for the frame and handle in a stiff, efficient manner. Kickstand clamps require high strength, thick walled chain stays or a chain stay mounted kickstand plate. Not gonna find that on a Trek 1.2 folks.

These accessories call out for a different kind of bike. A more versatile, "all-road" bike like a Crossrip from Trek, a Tamland from Raleigh, or Salsa Cycles excellent Vaya. All of these models can take a rack, and they all are comfortable bikes which racing bikes are not meant to be. Racing bikes are meant for racing, not comfort. These bikes I am mentioning are designed with comfort in mind. But please skip over them if you don't want to be comfortable. (Remember- going fast doesn't come from the bike folks, it comes from a rider that is comfortable on the bike, and fitness.

Finally, a word on tires. There is a huge misunderstanding when it comes to tires for riders attempting RAGBRAI. Many think that the skinniest tires they can buy will make them "faster". Nothing could be further from the truth. Skinny tires will definitely make your bike less comfortable, and it will make your bike more prone to flats and spoke breakage. Many will poo-poo this idea, and we as bike shop retailers will be more than happy to fix your flats and broken spokes, plus we'll gladly sell you wider, cushier saddles. But you could avoid all of that by riding proper tires at lower pressures and guess what? You'll have lower rolling resistance and less mechanicals. This isn't something I'm making up either. Studies are being done across many different entities which show the same outcome. Tires are suspension. Suspension damps vibrations which otherwise would reach you, (sore butts), or vibrate your machinery to death (broken spokes and more), and with high pressure, unforgiving skinny tires, you don't get any of that, and you won't be faster.  (Remember- People are either fast or slow, bicycles are a minimal factor in the speed equation)

So, there are some hard, cold truths about bicycles for RAGBRAI. Hopefully you folks with open minds will find it useful......





Friday, April 11, 2014

Fat News

Sub-Grand Fat Bike!!!
Fat Bike Sale:

If you've been on the fence about this fat bike thing, and needed a shove, well now is the time. We've reduced the prices on all remaining fat bike inventory, including a smokin' deal on the Origin 8 Crawler, which is marked so low I can't tell you on-line. Seriously!

We've got two Mukluk 2's and a couple 3's on the floor and when they are gone, they are gone. They won't last long at the prices we've marked them at, in fact- one sold already! 

The new full suspension Bucksaw
 Bucksaw Full Suspension Fat Bike:

We've known for three years that Salsa Cycles was working on a full suspension fat bike, but we had almost given up hope of  ever seeing it. Well, recently Salsa Cycles introduced Bucksaw full suspension fat bikes in the "1" & "2" levels. Based upon the highly acclaimed "Split Pivot" rear suspension design by Dave Weagle, the Buckshot is no novelty. It is a serious, trail oriented mountain bike.

The question we keep hearing is "Why the fat tires mated to full suspension? Aren't the big tires enough?" Great question, and here are a couple of reasons why Bucksaw makes great sense:

  • Big tires have Big Grip: Mountain biking is all about traction and keeping your traction under control. Think about that. Without traction, you are either out of control, or not going anywhere. Fat bike tires have a huge contact patch with the ground. A much larger contact patch than an ordinary mountain bike tire could ever have. More knobs equal more grip. You can go faster, climb better, and brake harder. 
  • Big tires are Undamped Suspension: While it is true that big fat bike tires have "springs" of air that can absorb a lot of trail deformities, that energy that is absorbed has to be returned either as heat, or an equal and opposite force. In terms of pneumatic tires, that energy returned will cause the tires to bounce. Suspension can arrest that energy and dissipate it, instead of your arms and legs doing that job. (Which I think sounds better than me having to deal with that energy!) With Bucksaw, you not only have superior traction, but you have a system to keep it under control as well. 
Bucksaw models will be available in the Fall of 2014, but if you want one, you may want to pre-order the bike, as these will be in high demand, being the first out of the gate with such a design on a wide scale. Come in and talk with us about these or any of the other excellent Salsa Cycles bikes we have or that we can order in for you.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Raleigh Tamland 1- The Road Bike With No Limits

Raleigh Tamland 1: Image courtesy of Cyclo Cross Magazine.
Here at Europa Cycles, we are stoked to be able to offer the Raleigh Tamland 1 model. This is a very unique bike that hasn't been available before. It is a very versatile design.

But first, it has to be said that one of Europa's own employees, (yours truly), actually had a hand in helping to develop the geometry and some of the features of the Tamland. (<==Click the link to find out the story.)

The Tamland is billed as a "gravel bike", but that's selling the design a bit short. Here's why the Tamland matters and why you might find it to be the perfect "all around" bike for most of your road biking needs:
  • The Tamland has a stable geometry: This means you have an easier time keeping the bike going forward over rougher roads, gravel, and even dirt!
  • The Tamland is constructed from Reynolds 631 tubing: This means that the ride quality will be smooth, but not "dead" feeling. It is a certain quality of higher end steel that seasoned cyclists seek out in a bicycle. There is a reason why......it feels good!
  • The Tamland has full rack and fender braze ons: This means it can be the perfect commuter, RAGBRAI rig, light touring bicycle, or perfect for your next, long adventure. In other words, it is versatile!
  • The Tamland can fit a wider range of tire widths: The Tamland comes stock with Clement's excellent all around purposed MSO 40mm tires, but you can just as easily mount 28mm road tires all the way up to 42mm dirt road tires and anything in between. Did we mention the bike is versatile? 
  • The Tamland has disc brakes: Disc brakes do several things for you- You can stop safely in any weather, you can use less hand force to stop more quickly and under control, the pads tend to last the average rider at least twice as long as ordinary road brake pads, and if you break a spoke, you don't have to compromise your brakes to keep rolling. The TRP Spyre disc calipers are also unique and powerful compared to the competition. 
  • The Tamland has a Shimano 105 spec level: This means you get reliable shifting, smooth operating drivetrain parts with a reasonable lightweight yet durable cassette, chain, and chain rings. Oh yeah......and it is 10 speed. A compact crank and wide range cassette mean that any hills around here are toast when you attack them. You've got plenty of gear on tap here!
Essentially, you can think of the Tamland as "the road bike with no limits". It can be fitted with accessories, no problems, unlike most lightweight, road racing bikes that are not meant to have racks, fenders, etcetera. It can run on pavement, busted up chip seal, gravel, dirt roads, fire roads, and essentially anywhere there is a path that doesn't require a mountain bike. It may be the only bike you'll ever need.

We've got a full size run of Tamland 1's in now. Stop by and see this and our other 2014 models in stock now. We'll have the coffee ready for you.......