The Surly Pugsley with BionX is one amazing electric fat bike. The bright colors and huge tires are really eye catching. You'll be rolling over anything on your electric Pugsley - easily! Expore your world with a bike that can take you anywhere!
Features of the Pugsley with BionX:
Note: SL350 pictured above and in additional pictures.
|BIONX BICYCLE MOTOR SPECS|
|Modes||All BionX motors have automatic pedaling assistance as well as no pedaling throttle power|
|SURLY PUGSLEY BICYCLE SPECS|
|Frame||Surly Pugsley, Surly 4130 CroMoly steel. Main triangle double butted. TIG-welded|
|Fork||Surly Pugsley, 135mm O.L.D., 17.5mm offset. 4130 CroMoly. TIG-welded. 1-1/8" threadless steer tube, uncut|
|Seatpost clamp||30.0mm (Surly stainless included), Silver|
|Crankset||TruVativ Hussefelt, 22/32/44t. Black|
|Bottom Bracket||Surly Mr. Whirly external , Cromoly, for 100mm shell|
|Front Derailleur||SLX Direct Mount, FD-M660. Topswing, dual pull|
|Rear Derailleur||Deore RD M591 SGSL, RD-M591 SGS Top Normal. Black|
|Chain||SRAM PC-971, Silver|
|Headset||Cane Creek 40, 1-1/8˝ threadless. Black|
|Brakes||Avid BB7, Cable actuated. 160mm rotors front & rear|
|Brake Levers||Avid FR5, Black|
|Shifters||Microshift Thumb Shifters, Model SA-109. 3 x 9, Black|
|Stem||Kalloy 4-bolt, 25.4mm bar clamp. 7 deg rise. 4-bolt face. Aluminum. Black|
|Handlebar||Salsa MotoAce, 660mm. 17 deg bend, Black|
|Saddle||WTB SST Comp, Steel rails. Black vinyl. Feels pretty o.k.|
|Seatpost||Kalloy SP-342, 27.2mm. 350mm. Black|
|Extras||Surly stainless steel post clamp, Surly toobs. DT Swiss Champion spokes|
|Front Hub||Surly New 135mm disc, 32h. 135mm. Threaded for SS freewheel. Bolt on, Black|
|Rims||Surly Marge Lite, 32h. Welded seam. 65mm width. Black|
|Spokes||14g DT Swiss spokes, Spokey|
If you are familiar with the term fatbike (and while some of you are, surely many are not), you have probably often heard it in conjunction with words like "craze" and "fad". But I am here to tell you that fatbikes have more staying power than pet rocks and Furbys. In fact, I think these powerful bikes have a rightful place in the well-rounded biker's quiver.
For those who don't know, a fatbike is a sort of mountain bike with ridiculously large tires--we're talking up to 4 or 5 inches in width. Their inner tubes inflate to a very low pressure compared to more conventional bikes, making for a bouncy, springy ride. These vehicles were invented for those who want a truly all-terrain bicycle, since they can tackle snow, ice, and sand with equal ease. Because of their gigantic tires, they can also roll over much large obstacles than other bikes--think sidewalk curbs and downed tree branches. At a time when many are looking replace coal and gas with pedal power, fatbikes make perfect sense to fill the niche of the all-terrain expedition vehicle, going where only Jeeps could go before.
Surly, a well-respected maker of steel frames, has taken up the fatbike call with as much fervor as any bicycle company, and currently offers two monstrous bikes to fill the niche: the Pugsley and the Moonlander. We were so taken with these imperious bikes that we could not help but think, "how can we make these more badass?"
The answer, of course, was to install 36-volt BionX electric conversion systems on them.
Our first project was the incomparable Moonlander, which we have previously written about. The project attracted so much attention on our electric bike Youtube channel, from customers in the shop, and from slack-jawed bystanders on the street, that we decided to top ourselves by outfitting the Pugsley fatbike with a similar system.
Now, the Pugsley comes with slightly smaller tires--3.8 inches as compared to the Moonlander's leviathan 4.7 inches--but do not think that makes this a lesser bike! It is simply designed for a different kind of use. While the Moonlander has such gigantic tires that it cannot help but bounce over everything, truly fulfilling its reputation as the ultimate fatbike, the Pugsley takes a slightly more balanced approach. Its tires are huge enough that it can mow over pretty much any obstacle in its path, while being small enough to keep some efficiency and aggression in its ride. The result is a bike that is truly ready for anything, as evidenced by the many insane expeditions that happy Pugsley owners have put their bikes through.
We figured that a bike with this much charisma deserved a singular electric system to compliment it, which is why we outfitted the Pugsley with a custom black rear hub motor to match its black rims, tires, saddlepost and stem. The result is a gorgeous and subtle (insomuch as a fatbike like the Pugsley can be subtle) electric bike that really can go anywhere. Further, this conversion is far from a base indulgence on our part. Since many Pugsley owners routinely take their bikes into sloppy mud pits and deep snow trenches, having an electric assist system that can throttle you out of a tight spot is actually quite practical.
Riding the electric Pugsley is ridiculously fun. I have written before about the incredibly liberating feeling of riding an electric bike for the first time, how the effortlessness of the experience makes you grin incessantly.
The Pugsley really took that experience up a notch! Its huge tires allowed me to literally bike down staircases as if they were ramps, and I cruised over gaping potholes that surely would have sent my commuting bike flying. When hopping up curbs became passe, I switched it up by simply biking straight over curbs and steps as easily as if I were walking.
What I most enjoyed about test riding the electrified Surly was combining its two strengths. Gunning the powerful 350 watt motor, I flew over bumpy, gravelly, sandy, and rocky terrain on the Pugsley's massive tires. The experience was that of racing a futuristic hovercraft, or perhaps joyriding a Howitzer attached to a Saturn V rocket.
Anyone looking for a fresh take on bicycles owes it to themselves to check out a fatbike, but those who want a truly new bicycling experience will be blown away by the power of these incredible BionX-powered Surlys.
About the Author
Miles Schneider is a social media coordinator for NYCeWheels in New York City. He plays 6-string electric violin and likes dogs. After writing this article, he really wants a Pugsley.