Salsa Mukluk 2

This past week I received a new Salsa Mukluk 2, and yesterday I finally finished assembly and got it out for a ride. In short: I really like this bike. Being a fat bike it’s got tremendously large tires which were originally designed for riding in snow, sand, and on other soft surfaces. This makes for a very interesting but really fun ride. I’m really looking forward to trying it in snow. As I already do a fair amount of winter riding (up until the snow is too deep to ride) this should extend the riding season for me even further. I am also really hoping to take it up north to the area around Sleeper State Park and Danielle’s aunt and uncle’s cabin so I can explore riding it on beaches and on sandy roads.

This bike was purchased via our team shop, Trail’s Edge Cyclery, and this allowed me to receive it unassembled and have fun building it up myself. Over three evenings I slowly (and enjoyably) put it together. This involved putting all the major pieces together, cutting the steerer tube while fitting the fork, cabling the whole bike, and setting up the drivetrain. Putting it together myself gave me a chance to set up the bike fit things (seatpost height, saddle fore/aft adjustment) from the get-go, and careful measuring of my other bikes resulted in the Mukluk being wonderfully comfortable for the first ride.

I also made a few slight modifications during assembly, including switching all cage mounts to stainless steel fasteners, filling empty (potential water ingress) holes with screws, converting a downtube bottle cage mount into additional cable retention points, wrapping the chainstay with an old tube, soaking the rust-resistant zinc-coated chain in ProLink Voyager, and fitting Ergon GP1 grips. This was a really enjoyable process and I’m very happy with the results. Due to the larger wheels I also had to fit a spacer kit to my bike rack so the wheels to fit, but this generally went well and works as advertised.

Yesterday I took the bike out for a first ride at River Bends, and it went rather well. I’ve got a small tick that seems seatpost/saddle related that I need to look into, but other than that I had no issues with it. The twist shifters seem nice but will take some getting used to; having no particular indexing for the front derailleur is quite a change, but being able to trim the front derailleur on the fly is nice.

In the photo album Salsa Mukluk 2 you can see a number of photos that I took during the unboxing, build, and first ride. Click here if you’d like to see them.

(Incidentally, this just happens to be post #1000 since March 31, 2008 when I moved to using WordPress for blog posting.)

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