Tuesday, May 31, 2011

What the hey? Sun Spider AT


Out of the box with a Sturmy-Archer 2-speed kick-back coaster-brake and 3-piece BMX crank. Basic angles nailed (72.5/72). 4" no-name tires. Huge-ass no-name rims.

Retails for about $550.

It's a Sun Spider AT.

With a couple modifications (canti posts up front, some space bars, new saddle, etc), this mutha is a cheap alternative to the Pugsley.

What's going on here?

How can one possibly resist this?

13 comments:

bmike said...

tires are made by innova, same company that makes the endomorph and the larry, but with a 'spider' pattern in it for the tread. some folks like the inverted spider, others don't think they work well at all...

John Speare said...

Thanks. I wish I understood how tires are made. I get the mold thing -- but does a different mold have to be used for each tread? or do you use a single mold for a given width, then add the tread pattern with a different process?
The reason I wonder is because I want to know if this Sun can take the Larry. The few times I've ridden the Endomorph, I've been unimpressed with mud or sloppy/wet snow conditions, even at low pressure, they just slip a lot.
The inverted spider will no doubt be worse in those conditions. Larry looks like it would be pretty good when run silly low.

Joseph said...

John,
Have you seen this vid? It may shed some light on tire mfg for you, or at least how Schwalbe does it.

Fred Blasdel said...

I was hoping J&B would be selling the wheelsets, but they do have the hubs / rims / rim strips / tubes / tires all as separate SKUs!

Zach Hunt - Personal Trainer Spokane said...

For the $550 is that all in?

John Speare said...

Joseph: thanks for the link. That is very intersting. Man Schwalbe uses a ton of rubber in each tire. No wonder they're such tanks. It would be cool to see how "hand made" tires are made.

Fred: I can't find the rims on the JB site. Do you have a url? I'm hoping hoping that they're alloy, but I'm prepared to hear that they are steel.

Zach: I'm just guessing on retail price. Might be closer to $600

John Speare said...

Fred: they're alloy rims. Sweet. Rim brakes *will* work. And they're back ordered at JB.

bmike said...

Don't see why a Larry wouldn't fit. The tires are the same size... and some folks over on MTBR in the Fatbikes forum are happy with those tires on hardpack.

Mauricio Babilonia said...

John, the current wisdom on fat bikes is Larry up front and Endo in the back. Both are the same size as the Spider and should fit this bike.

Not knowing the details of your experience with the Endo, I should mention that both of the Surly tires seem particularly sensitive to relatively small changes in pressure. I've found that they need to be run at much lower pressures than one might think in soft conditions like snow, sand or muck. I've had good luck with 6psi front and 8psi back (I'm 180 and my bike is about 36lbs) even in firm snow conditions. More like 4/6 in soft snow. 15-20 on pavement works pretty well.

Takes riding them more than once or twice to get things figured out...YMMV and good luck.

John Speare said...

Mauricio -- good stuff. Thanks. Yeah -- I've barely ridden the Pugsley, and I'm not sure what the pressure was, but man, I'd have a hard time believing it was that low...

I'm in the queue for a Spider, so we'll see.

Vik said...

I think spending $550 towards a used Pugsley and topping up the difference is a better investment. Unless your only goal is to putter around the hood.

John Speare said...

Vik: prudent advice.
But part of the fun of the Sun is the low entrance fee -- then the challenge of fussing it out over time.
I was just pondering the rear OLD and sure 'nuff, the 2 speed has a weirdo size OLD: 116mm. And the Sun is aluminum, so it won't like to be spread. My thinking on the IGH + drum brake idea will need to shift (pa dum pum!).

jimmythefly said...

Here's a video of Vittoria tubulars being made by hand. Not sure how much crossover there is with hand made clinchers.

Might be OK for IGH and drum, just need to check folding bike type stuff. I recall some of them having oddball OLD.