Hardtails. Antiquated examples of mountain bike technology to some but to others, they’re liberated and simplified machines. Each year, I plan on riding a full suspension in Downieville, yet I always end up bringing my hardtail for one reason or another so this year, I took a look at just some of the bikes that were rolling around this Gold Rush town.
It’s hard not to make that reference on a bike called the Chris Cross. Back when Fat Chance began, I doubt Chris Chance would have foreseen the future, or at least where and how people would be riding these bikes that are a mix of ‘cross and road bikes yet here we are. Brent bought a Chris Cross with the “Team Fade” finish and matching stem to be his all-rounder bike in SoCal and on a recent outing to Los Angeles, I was able to shoot this damn perfect bike.
With the rebirth of the Fat Chance brand, the success of the Yo Eddy’s Kickstarter reviving the brand, the team has worked on modernizing the vintage catalog. With the Yo Eddy 2.2, Chris and his team updated the hardtail model with clearances for plus tires, a new dropout design, and boost spacing. But what about people who want a rowdier stance in a bike? Well, for them, Chris and his team designed what they’re calling the Wicked Fat Chance Enduro, a bike that sports an aggressive geometry, designed to go downhill. This prototype sports a longer top tube, a 65º head angle, a boost rear spacing, internal dropper routing, and an even lower top tube, thanks to the braced seat tube cluster. The team at Fat Chance said this bike was designed for a 27.5″ tire, yet another version is on the way that will fit the popular 27.5+/29″ platform.
Head to Fat Chance now to place a pre-order for this frame, which is priced at $1,799 in the Yo Eddy colorways.
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The latest from Fat Chance beckons you to get off those busy paved roads and off onto some dirt. With two wheel size clearance options, a steel Yo Eddy or carbon fork option and plenty of paint choices to make this Chris Cross bike your own. See more at Fat Chance.
If you’re looking for a new steel road frameset, check out the latest offering from Fat Chance. These True Temper Slim Chance frames come with a number of configuration options. You can choose a steel fork, or an ENVE, color-matched ENVE stem, and even a color-matched Silca frame pump. You can even select if you want a cabled road groupset or SRAM Red eTap. The pricing starts at $2395 for a frame, fork and King headset, allowing you to tack on options as needed. This pre-order is a limited edition offering, and will close out on November 15th with a end of January 2017 delivery.
Fat Chance looks back to its roots with these vintage “star” shirts. For a while, you could find these at swap meets in the north east, littered with grease stains and holes. Now you can put your own beausage on one! On sale now at Fat Chance for $20.
While Chris Chance and Fat City might be known best for their MTB, segmented forks and revolutionizing the tig-welding process for frame building, they also had a very successful road bike, dubbed the Slim Chance 2.0. Well, with the relaunch of the brand and its hardtail MTBs, Fat City has just announces their new Slim Chance frames… Check out these details and head over to Fat Chance to see more!
-Available as a frame, ENVE carbon fork and Chris King headset package for $2295.
-Segmented steel Yo Road Fork will be available as an option in the coming weeks.
-Painted stem upgrade options; Carbon (ENVE) for $355, Alloy for $250.
-Choice of mechanical or electronic shifting options at no extra charge.
-4 colors inspired some of our favorite Slim’s from the past; Blue, Pearl White, Pale Yellow and Red.
-Framesets ship in 4-6 weeks, complete bikes in 6-8 weeks.
(models shown are pre-production prototypes from 2015 NAHBS – changes were made to production models)
Fat Chance has a few extra frames from the 2015 pre-order up for sale with large / xlarge sizing in the 29’r and medium in the 27.5. Unfortunately there are no rigid forks in stock, but all the colors are available for now. Price is $1,699 and frames will ship mid February once the Kickstarter and pre-order frames are shipped. Head to Fat Chance now to see the 29’r and 27.5 hardtails.
This one’s a strange bird for sure. 1994 brought about a sea change in the mountain bike industry. The world was abuzz with full suspension bikes and suddenly manufacturers like Fat City Cycles found their hands forced to embrace this new technology. It was this year that Fat Chance joined forces with Serotta in New York. This manufacturing move allowed bikes like the Shock-A-Billy to be born, as well as increased production in the standard lineup including: a Ti Fat, Buck Shaver, Yo Eddy, Wicked Lite and the brand’s road bike, the Slim Chance. These frames featured quad butting, an aluminum AMP rear swingarm providing 2.75″ of travel and an optional Rock Shox Mag 21 fork.
How bikes like this survive for over 20 years and remain mostly intact continues to baffle me. Especially with builds like this: Ringle skewers, WTB VelociRaptor tires, White Industry hubs, Moto Ace Salsa stem, Syncros post and a working Shimano XTR group.
Fat City Cycles suffered a fatal blow in 2000, only to return in 2014 with a new plan… They’re back and you can own a modern Fat City.
As for vintage Fat City, if you really wanna go down the Fat City rabbit hole, read up at Mombat!
Chris Chance is bringing back Fat Chance Bicycles. Making a killer bike back in the day wasn’t easy and bringing it back to life 15 years after closing down shop can’t be either. Chris will be speaking at Mission Workshop San Francisco Saturday August 15th.
“Chris Chance is bringing back Fat Chance Bicycles. Making a killer bike back in the day wasn’t easy and bringing it back to life 15 years after closing down shop can’t be either. Chris will be speaking at Mission Workshop San Francisco Saturday August 15th. John Watson will be leading the questions, but attendees are welcome to ask Chris what’s on their mind. The talk will be live streamed on TheRadavist.com so you can follow along from your garage, but if you’re local, email email@example.com to grab a seat. Beers start at 5pm, doors close at 6:30pm. Talk starts at 7pm.”
We hope to see you there!
$600. That’s how much Jacob paid for his Team Fat Chance frame on eBay. It was in pristine condition with the original Yo Eddy! fork and a brand new paint job. Here’s when the collector would begin to scrounge up all the NOS parts to restore it to its original glory, yet all Jacob wanted was a bike he could ride Austin’s Greenbelt trails on. Even with the rebirth of a Fat Chance brand, there’s something to be said about 20-year steel frames. Especially with a legacy like Fat City.
While most of the build is straightforward, the Bullmoose bars and Velocity Cliffhanger rims, laced to Deore hubs are the standout details. Now his Onza tires are tubeless, which means he can run lower pressure and not worry about snakebikes on limestone ledges and the Deore hubs will be easily serviceable after the rain brings creek crossings.
His 1x setup was made possible by a clutch Deore derailleur and a Wolf Tooth ring, mounted to vintage Shimano cranks and braking is being taken care of by Chico’s finest, Paul Components.
For around $1,500, Jacob built up a vintage mountain bike with style and while it might not tackle a rock garden as fast as a modern full sus bike, sometimes the ride isn’t about being timed.
Cole and Jonathan at Mellow Johnny’s did a great job on the build and this bike looks so good covered in limestone dust. Shred on, buddy.
You’re gonna be seeing a lot of Chris Chance and Fat Chance over the next few weeks:
“The Pro’s Closet caught up with Chris Chance at the “Mountain Bike Hall of Fame” in the spring of 2015. In this mini-doc, Chris describes the early days of Fat Chance, the forces that pulled him away from the bicycle world, and the passion that led him back!”
After debuting the two signature Yo Eddy hardtails at NAHBS this year, Fat Chance Bicycles has opened up their production run for pre-order. Since we last saw the bikes here on the Radavist, a few details have been tidied up. The 29’r now has a curved seat tube, which gave it more tire clearance while keeping the rear end rowdy. There are other improvements from the prototypes to production, which are all outlined at the below links. These frames are made in California and retail for $1,699 with a $699 deposit due upon pre-order.
Dammit, these bikes look good!
Now, I’ll admit that the Yo Eddy! 29’r had me pretty stoked but I was more drawn to the 27.5″ version. Not that the 29’r doesn’t look like a great bike, it was just missing something… Something signature and iconically Chris Chance.
Segmented forks made the older Yo Eddy! frames in my opinion and after seeing the rigid 27.5 version at NAHBS, I knew what was missing with the 29r. My rigid Indy Fab was modeled after the old Yo Eddy! frames and it’s long been my favorite MTB. It has an iconic look that feels very Somerville.
Personally, if I were to buy a new Yo Eddy! frame, I would spring for the rigid fork option. Just look at that damn bike! It’s a perfect balance of modern components with just the right amount of throwback style. The build kit rounds out functionality nicely with XTR, a dropper post, brand spankin’ new WTB carbon rims, White Industries hubs and those nice n plump WTB 2.25″ Trail Boss tires.
While the 29r could tackle my local trails with ease, this rigid would make things a lot more interesting. Then, when your wrists and back start hurting, throw a Rock Shox on it and jam on.
Like the big brother of this frame, this one’s a prototype. Custom drawn stays are on the way and the geometry might take a bit of tweaking. Hopefully, me and Mr Yo Eddy! can spend some quality trail time together soon. Keep up to date on all things at Fat Chance Bicycles.
There are only 21 days left to support Fat Chance’s return on Kickstarter. Maybe you’ve seen this video, or maybe you haven’t, but hopefully it’ll answer some questions. Fat Chance will be making their frames in the USA. That is confirmed. Head over to the Fat Chance Kickstarter to help out. Man, that frame is tempting!
Also, shouts to Brendan Shafer for supplying Chris with all the modern action video spots!
Yep, it’s true. Fat Chance is back and he’s not only selling shirts and jerseys, but frames. Now on Kickstarter, the new 2015 Yo Eddy frames are available for backing, with a September 2015 delivery. Limited to 150 frames, these bikes won’t last long.
Hopefully this means the New England legend has returned for good.
Support Fat Chance on Kickstarter by buying stickers, shirts, jerseys, or yeah, a frame.
This is the second pristine Fat Chance to roll through the doors of Golden Saddle Cyclery over the past few months. There’s a local collector who keeps coming upon these gems and builds them up with either NOS components or damn near close. The most recent acquisition is this Team Fat Chance, built with XTR, Kooka, Onza, Machine Tech, Chris King, Syncros and a set of NOS Onza Racing Porcs tires… yeah.
At this point, no one wants to ready any more copy, so check out more photos in the Gallery!