What is the difference between a fat bike and a regular bike

What is a fat bike for?

The fat bike is designed for off-road riding: mud and soft ground, loose sand, gravel and snow. Where a regular MTB does not pass, the fat bike will not notice the difficulties. He won’t be able to cope with meter-long snowdrifts, but he will cope with the snow porridge. For the ability to ride on snow, a fat bike is also called a snowbike or snow bike. A fat bike can be used not only off-road, but also as a city all-season transport, especially in cities where snow is poorly removed.

Fat Bike: Pros and Cons of a Fatbike

Fatbike (English fatbike). a bike with thick wheels, the name literally translates as a fat bike. This is a mountain bike with wide wheels for off-road riding in winter and summer. The idea for the bicycle belongs to Mark Grunwald, who lives in Alaska. You can ride a fat bike at any time of the year. It rolls both on flat asphalt and off-road: snow, sand, mud and stones.

difference, bike, regular

Fat bike: pros and cons

  • Passability: rides on snow, sand, soft ground, stones and other off-road
  • The perfect bike for winter
  • Smooth ride: tires swallow all bumps in the road
  • Impressive appearance
  • expensive than MTB
  • Heavier and larger than a regular bike
  • Significantly inferior in speed to other bicycles
  • It’s harder to pedal
  • Need to adjust tire pressure on different surfaces
  • Difficulty finding some parts

How to choose a fat bike and how much does it cost

Fatbikes are single-speed and multi-speed, folding, mechanical and electric, all-wheel drive. The choice of model depends on budget and goals, but the most common options are a regular fat bike with gearshift switches and an electric fat bike.

An electric fat bike is a conventional fat bike with an electric motor mounted on a frame. Electrophets are much more expensive and should be chosen only if you want to use your bike as a means of transportation. For sports purposes, choose a regular.

Choosing a fat bike in terms of frame size and body kit level is similar to a regular mountain bike. Therefore, if you already own a bike, choose a frame of the same size. Read about the level of derailleurs, brakes and frame materials in our article on choosing a bike.

How much is a fat bike

Like any other bikes, fat bikes vary greatly in price depending on materials, components and brand. On average, fat bikes cost more than regular mountain bikes for the same drivetrain and frame material.

Fatbikes range from 300 to 5,000. Quality models with reliable hardware start at 1,000. Decent discount models can be found from 500.

Bike with wide wheels: design and features of a fat bike

A fat bike can be easily distinguished from a regular bike by its large, wide wheels, similar to motorcycle ones. The width of the tires is 3.5-5 inches (for a standard mountain bike. up to 2.5 inches), the width of the rims is 65-100 mm. The pressure in the fat bike chamber is in the range of 0.5-2 atm. Depending on the road surface, the pressure in the chamber must be reduced or increased. Wide wheels with low pressure create good shock absorption and go off-road. If you increase the pressure, it will be convenient to ride on the highway. Pressure needs to be experimented with because very high or very low pressure will cause the bike to jump and reduce handling.

Depending on the size of the model, the weight of the fat bike can be from 10 to 20 kg. Fatbikes can withstand a load of 80-140 kg. Due to its size, the fat bike seems clumsy and dangerous.

Fat bike frames are available in steel, aluminum and carbon. The latter greatly facilitate the design, but they also cost 2-3 times more expensive than the others.

A fat bike, like any SUV, accelerates slowly and develops a low speed. up to 25-30 km / h. For faster driving, there are electrophets with a motor and a battery. These models are much heavier and more expensive than regular fats.

Fat bike or regular mountain bike

You need to start from goals and weigh well whether you really need a fat bike. If you need a bike to ride cross-country in summer and winter, a fat bike is a great option. They are easier to drive off-road. wide tires do not sink in snow and sand, swallow all the unevenness of the road.

If you ride around the city most of the time and do not ride a bike in winter, a fat bike is definitely not needed. It is more difficult to pedal and gain speed, it is massive and heavy. For commuting and driving around the city, a city bike, touring or regular MTB is better suited. It will also be a universal bike and is suitable for riding in parks and even trips in winter along a trodden path.


They have a sturdy aluminum frame and wide, durable wheels up to ten centimeters wide and 20 inches in diameter. The maximum weight of such a bike is 20 kg. At the same time, a fat bike can withstand a person up to 190 cm tall and weighing up to 130 kg. The seat height can be changed. Also the gearbox is equipped with 24 speeds.

Most popular fat bike brands

Before buying, you should familiarize yourself in detail with the brands and models presented. Today the most popular ones are:

Fat bike foldable design

Thanks to this function, the oversized foldable fat bike 24 can be converted into a convenient small bike. You don’t need an additional set of tools to assemble or disassemble the bike. Several manufacturers have created models with removable handlebars and pedals. Therefore, transporting it in a car is not difficult.

Also, some manufacturers provide a bag for a foldable fat bike in the kit to make it even easier to transport.

Folding fat bikes in Russia are not yet as popular as, for example, in America or Canada, where this type of transport is the most relevant. These fatbikes can be ridden not only by adults, but also by children. The demand for such bicycles is growing every year. It is very convenient to use them.

High-end models of fat bikes provide the ability to mount an electric motor. That allows them to overcome even the most difficult obstacles.

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Despite the fat bike model, it requires wheel changes in summer and winter, so each owner should stock up on two types of wheels. Since large tires are used for trips in winter, but for trips to the mountains, you will need tires of a smaller diameter.

There is a huge variety in the market for fat bikes. They differ in the difference in functions, so each buyer can choose a fat bike for specific purposes. whether it is quiet walks in the city or off-road trips.

If you follow the operating conditions, then the fat bike will serve you for a long time.

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Foldable fat bike: differences from other types

Today we do not often see electric bicycles on the roads of the city, they rather look like something extraordinary, but very interesting. After all, they look like a bicycle, but you don’t have to pedal. And, what is most interesting, they move much faster than ordinary ones, familiar to us.

A foldable fat bike is different from conventional bicycles. Often, buyers wonder if it is worth giving more money to fold the bike and how long it will last. In this article we will tell you in detail what is the difference between a folding fat bike.


Such bicycles are usually bought by people for the purpose of moving off-road or in the snow.

Fatbikes have thick wheels that allow them to move off-road. But before you buy such a bike, you should familiarize yourself in detail with its features.

Love Friedam

This fatbike line comes with cast wheels. It can move gently off-road due to its low air volume. The bike weighs about seventeen kilograms. Gearbox for 21 speeds. Also in this model there is an aluminum frame.

Often this is the model chosen by couriers and students. Since this bike comes with a bag, a tail light and a lock. Rear flashlight facilitates movement in the dark and operates with two AA batteries.

Choosing a fat bike

Buying the cheapest fat bike model is at risk. Because they are built to ride in extreme conditions, and a cheap model won’t last long. This can be very dangerous for you. Therefore, it is not worth saving in this matter. Better to raise money for a decent model.

In Russia, the models of fat bikes of the Stealth and Forward companies are popular. And the most reliable bicycles are made by Dagon and Brumpton.

You can also purchase fat bikes of Russian brands online.

Fat bike or mountain bike. What to choose?


There is a shock absorber in front of the fat bike, although this is not necessary at all. His travel is very soft, even with a rigid fork. The most expensive bike with an air shock does not match this model.

Indescribable comfort while driving is the indisputable advantage of this SUV. This is especially felt on roads covered with gravel, small bumps. Where the mountain bike starts to vibrate, the fat bike runs smoothly and without problems. But a high-quality, shock-absorbing fork, will smooth out all the bumps and on the MTB bike.

An off-road bike has a smoother ride and a more comfortable ride. But steep ascents uphill on a fat bike will be more difficult. Spinning such wheels will not be so easy than on an MTB bike.

A little history of the origin of the fat bike.

In 1932, an American magazine published an article and a picture of a bike with oversized tires. People did not believe it, they considered this information a joke.

Almost 50 years later, American Mark Grunwald brought this idea to life. He created a bicycle with wide tires for riding in snowy Alaska. An amazing model of a bicycle was named by S. Brown the most worthy invention of the century.

Bikes are very popular in the American continent and in Europe. They are used by young people and elderly people in winter and summer.

On the street, bicycles on thick tires are increasingly common. Everyone is curious about the question. which is better than a fat bike or a mountain bike. What to choose?

The name fat bike consists of two English words. Fat is a fat, bike is a bicycle. That is, this is a model with thick wheels, which are significantly larger than that of a mountain bike.

Looking at the design of this model, it can be assumed that this bike is an SUV. This is indeed the case. Thick tires help overcome impassable mud and snow-covered trails.

It will easily ride on sand and plowed fields, snow and off-road.

Do you want an off-road bike?

Fat bike and MTB cross-country ability.

A mountain bike, clad in special rubber for mud, cannot travel on all roads. In those places where he is hopelessly stuck, the fat bike will feel great.

The main secret of this miracle all-terrain vehicle is not in wide tires, but in low pressure inside them. Do not be afraid that the wheel will puncture. This will not happen, thanks to the powerful tires. They come in sizes up to 5.5 inches and rim widths up to 10 cm.

Fat bike wheel sizes are the same diameter as mountain bikes: 26 “, 27.5” and 29 “. But when choosing between a fat bike and a mountain bike, you need to consider the cost of tires. There is a clear disadvantage to the fat bike. There are no cheap bicycles with wide wheels. Their cost is equal to that of automobiles and not even the most budgetary ones.

Due to this structural feature, the pressure in the wheels can be reduced from 2 to 0.5 atmospheres. The weight of such a wheel reaches 3 kg. But many manufacturers have found a way out of this situation. Many holes are drilled in the rim to lighten the weight.

If the wheels of the fat bike are pumped up harder, then it becomes an ordinary mountain bike, only a little heavier. Apart from the tires, the rest of the fat bike parts are identical and interchangeable with the mountain bike.

Choosing a bike for passing difficult sections of the path, in cross-country ability, a fat bike surpasses a mountain bike.

Considering the general characteristics, one can distinguish:


The advantage of the fat bike is its stylish look. You won’t be able to drive a fat bike down a city street unnoticed.

Modern mountain bikes do not stand out for their large wheels, but the color of all models is two, three and four-color, attracting the eyes of passers-by and those who look at the world from the car window.

What is the difference between an electric bike and an electric bike

A fat bike is a type of bike that is easily recognizable by its fat wheels. Thanks to its wide tires, the pressure in which can be reduced to 0.2 atm., The fatbike impresses with its cross-country ability and smooth ride when driving off-road, mud, snow and other difficult conditions. Such SUVs are unmatched in rough terrain. At the same time, they provide a comfortable movement on ordinary roads.

To adapt the fat bike to the conditions of the trip, it is enough to change the pressure in its tires:

  • for off-road driving, forest, mountainous terrain. a pressure range of 0.2–1.5 atm is appropriate;
  • for driving on asphalt. a standard pressure of 3–3.5 atm is suitable.

In fact, a fat bike is an off-road version of a mountain bike and a real godsend for riders who like to ride all year round and in any weather. Another advantage of the fet is its excellent natural cushioning. It rides on gravel and roads with numerous bumps without shaking and vibrations, which is advantageous compared to conventional bicycles.

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Differences between a fat bike and a standard e-bike

Let’s list the characteristic differences between an electric bike and an electric bike of a standard design:

  • tires with a width from 3.5 to 4.8”;
  • frame and fork of special geometry, allowing the use of wide tires;
  • the ability to change the tire pressure from 0.2 to 3.5 atm to adapt the bike to specific operating conditions;
  • thanks to soft wheels. minimal risk of puncture;
  • at low tire pressure. smooth flow around all kinds of irregularities on the way;
  • an unusual view that attracts everyone’s attention;
  • off-road qualities, the ability to drive even where an ordinary bike will have to be rolled or carried;
  • versatility;
  • improved stability;
  • the possibility of year-round use, including for driving on loose soil, stones, sand, swampy areas, snow, grass;
  • smooth maneuvering on a variety of surfaces;
  • soft ride and effective damping of irregularities. due to the use of wide tires, there is no need to use additional shock absorbers;
  • often. using hard forks;
  • increased weight. each wheel of a fat bike, together with a hub and spokes, weighs about 3.3 kg;
  • Accent is not for speed, but for cross-country ability and ride comfort. electric bikes usually reach speeds of no higher than 45 km / h.

These are the main differences between a bicycle hybrid and an electric bicycle of a standard design. Otherwise, the construction of a fat bike is the same as that of a mountain bike. They all have identical attachments. Electric bikes are usually rear-wheel drive. But you can assemble an option with both front and all-wheel drive. The brakes on these bikes are usually disc brakes, mechanically actuated (cheaper) or hydraulically actuated (more reliable). E-bikes are no more difficult to ride than regular bikes. Driving difficulties can only arise when driving at speeds above 30 km / h.

Our previous article details the features of fat bike wheels.

What is a fat bike?

Fat bike, what is it? A new round in the evolution of mountain biking, or just someone decided to reinvent the bicycle again? Let’s figure out what kind of fat bike it is, as well as who and why it is suitable.

Fatbike is the Russian spelling of the English word fatbike, which consists of two parts fat (fat). fat and bike (bike). bicycle, i.e. literally the name of such an off-road bike is a fat bike. Looking at a fat bike or just fat, it immediately becomes clear that we are talking about its wheels, which are much thicker than the wheels of mountain bikes.

What is the main thing in a fat bike?

But fat wheels are not the main feature of fat bikes. The main thing is the low pressure in the tires, which they can have without the danger of puncture or wheel breakdown, thanks to their hefty tires, which sometimes reach 5.5 inches and wide rims from 65 to 100 mm. All this allows you to keep the pressure in the chambers of the fet in the range of 0.5 atm. up to 2 atm.

The main advantage “fat man” or, as stated above, snowbike is also a major drawback. Gravity is a merciless force, and such large wheels will tend to the ground with twice (if not tripled) the force of a mountain bike wheel. After all, one feta wheel weighs about 3 kg! But there are also loopholes here. You can drill a lot of holes in the rim, which is what many manufacturers do.

Partially compensates for the weight by the lack of a shock suspension for the fet. The front fork is installed on them with a shock absorber, but there is no special need for this, because the stroke is so soft without it that even an expensive two-suspension, with a high-quality suspension, will be a stool in comparison with a sofa-like feta.

What Is A Fat Bike? | GMBN Explains Fat Bikes

For many bikers, this is even more important than the all-terrain fat bike. The difference is especially noticeable on gravel roads, and other small irregularities in the road, making the mountain bike tremble and the one who sits on it with a small tremor.

Another advantage of the fat bike is its unusual appearance. Although they did not appear yesterday, there are still very few of them and you will definitely not be deprived of attention, both from pedestrians and drivers.

What is a fat bike for??

So what is a fat bike? This is an SUV among bicycles. A bike for those who love uncompromising skiing all year round. Thanks to its thick wheels, fatbike has increased cross-country ability not only on the crossroad. the element of mountain bikes. He easily rides on dry sand, arable land, snow and complete off-road. Hence the other name for a fat bike. snowbike, i.e. snow bike.

Where a mountain bike, even on specialized mud tires, makes the biker feel not very confident, and can even force him to temporarily become a pedestrian, fatbike feels like a fish in water.

Is it difficult to ride?

At first glance, it seems that riding a fet bike is extremely difficult. This is not true. Modern fetas are stable and reliable. Despite the large wheels, the ride of a fat bike is almost the same as a conventional bike, and thanks to the same transmission, it is easy to find the right gear ratio for a comfortable ride, both in the city and on difficult terrain. Riding a fatbike will only become significantly harder at speeds above 25-30 km / h. If you need faster, a fetbike will not work.

But even then there was a way out. an electro fat bike. This is the same bike, only with a motor inside the wheel or in the bottom bracket assembly, and a battery on the frame or bike rack. It is more optimal, of course, when the battery is located at the place of the bottle. And it looks more ergonomic and the center of gravity is lower. And it is convenient to take off and charge. Instead of shoveling the whole bike, like models with a built-in battery in the frame, which, by the way, are more expensive.

Yes, a fat man with a motor will be heavier, but you will only notice this when you pick it up or when the battery runs out. By the way, the pedals of the electrophete will remain, and you can go with a discharged battery simply by twisting them.

The advantages of an electric fat bike are high speed. The battery charge (depending on the capacity and intensity of the ride, of course) is enough for a trip up to 100 km. Do not forget about the ability to use the power of the motor as a pedaling aid, which, by the way, greatly saves the battery. Or you can, having rolled on your own, let the electric motor take you home, tired of pedaling.

Where to get a fat bike

It should be borne in mind that to ride a fat bike, you need to have sufficient physical fitness, because cycling on it is a serious load on the muscles.

However, for those who want to get into the fat bike but don’t want to strain, there are electric models with a small 500W motor. You can also travel on an electrofetbike up to 50 km without recharging. They are more expensive (about 40 thousand hryvnia), but there are several advantages for those who do not like to pedal. After all, you can easily ride on it where your legs can get tired. over snowdrifts, sand, stones. By the way, in the Finnish city of Oulu, every fifth resident uses an electric pet bike instead of a car or public transport.

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What is a fat bike

If you think that cycling is an activity exclusively for the warm season, you are deeply mistaken. After all, a fat bike is just an extreme sport of cycling, just not quite an ordinary one. A fat bike, from the English fatbike or a fat bike, differs from other models of bicycles in its increased strength and wide tires. the width of the tires reaches 9.7-11.4 cm.

Such bicycles have another feature. low tire pressure, which increases the contact area with the surface. This helps to drive over uneven terrain, although it does not allow for high speeds. However, a fat bike will be able to get through where a regular two-wheeler falls into the snow. over, this transport keeps much better on ice.

Fat bike is fun

If you have a fat bike, winter will definitely not be boring. After all, you can have a great time, play sports and look at the surroundings at the same time. You can go to the park or ride near the house, depending on how much physical training you have.

If you can find people who are passionate about cycling like you, you can go out of town to ride on snow-covered paths where cars do not risk driving, because thanks to wide tires such a bike will not fail. Also, on a fat bike, you can go down to the coast of a frozen river or even go on the ice. The main thing is to make sure that the ice on the river is strong and you are not in danger.

And also a fabike. this is beneficial because riding time strengthens the heart, reduces the risk of heart attack and burns more calories. As a result, you become healthier and better looking.

In addition, the wide tires add extra comfort while riding. Indeed, pits and bumps are practically not felt on a fat bike, because such wheels swallow them. In the conditions of the city, this will also come in handy, since our roads are far from ideal, and along the way there are often curbs and speed bumps.

A bit of fat bike history

For our region, the fat bike is still a fairly new sport, but it has been popular in the world for almost 30 years (although the first bicycles with thick wheels were mentioned in the Western press back in the 30s of the twentieth century). In America, this type of winter activity spread in the 90s of the last century, and from there it has already reached the rest of the world.

The fatbike’s father is considered to be Alaska-based Mark Gronewald, who coined the term fatbike. He, like a real cyclist, could not remain without his favorite transport during the long northern winter. Then the guy himself stretched the three-inch (7.62 cm) tires on his bike to the size of a standard bicycle rim (8 cm). As a result, his brainchild made it possible to enjoy cycling not only along flat paths on warm summer days, but also in the snowy February forest. American bicycle connoisseur and popular bike mechanic Sheldon Brown even called this event one of the most important for cyclists since the invention of the mountain bike.

It is noteworthy that it was on a fat bike that cyclist Maria Leierstam conquered the South Pole in 2013. Previously, no other bike model was able to get there.

The fat tank weighs 14-17 kg, almost a third of the weight is the wheels. These bikes are especially popular in the Nordic countries. Also, fat bikes are actively used in sports competitions, most often in cross-country races.

FAT BIKE vs MTB | which one should you buy?

Well, 3-4 years ago this sport came to Ukraine. In winter, this is a great way to spend time outdoors, get an extreme charge and have a great rest.

Usually fat bikers are those who are fond of mountain biking, trekking enthusiasts and those who simply do not want to part with their favorite mode of transport in winter.

Extreme entertainment: what is a fat bike and how to properly prepare for it in winter

Ukraine this year was covered by a real harsh winter with severe frosts, blizzards and snowdrifts. This means that it’s time to master winter sports. Those who are not enough familiar with skis, snowboards and sledges may be interested in another extreme, but not yet very common hobby in Ukraine. a fat bike. UNIAN figured out what it is.

How to dress properly for a fat bike in winter

Dressing is essential for winter riding to be beneficial and not harmful. Indeed, at the speed of a cyclist, it can easily blow out, and unprotected areas of the skin (usually the neck and wrists) instantly become insensitive and frostbitten. Therefore, if you are seriously going to ride a fat bike in winter, you should get special clothing. It is not much more expensive than usual, but it retains heat perfectly, is not blown out and removes sweat.

In addition, professionals advise to dress in layers, choose clothes with long sleeves, and also do not forget about thermal underwear. After all, clothes made of ordinary cotton fabric in this case do not fit in any way. they are easily blown through, get wet with sweat and do not dry out. As a result, you run the risk of catching a cold in no time.

Also, in winter, a tourist’s backpack must contain a thermos or a special two-layer flask, a spare hat, gloves, nutritious food and a kit with spare parts for repairing the bike.

Fat bike competition

For those who are ready to take seriously the conquest of this sport, there are many competitions in fat bike, as well as trail riding. This is mountain biking along paths and paths in the forest with a slight addition of extreme. This trail with easy preparation is called the Trail. Tracks can contain overhangs, spines, and rock sections. To overcome them, you need to be able to go down the rather hard ramps and control the bike on the path. This is how, for example, Ukrainian cyclists arranged trail riding in the Carpathians.

A big plus of fat bikes is that many of them are universal, that is, they are suitable for riding both in winter and in summer. One has only to change the tires, as in the car. This transport, in addition to snow, will pass over sand, mud, slippery cobblestones, easily slip in tall grass.

Where there is sport and movement, there is always energy and good mood. If you were looking for something new and didn’t want to wait until spring, it’s time to experiment. What if a fat bike becomes your favorite mode of transport, and you no longer want to get to work by minibus?