did you decide to build a Surly Pugsley?
I decided to build a Surly Pugsley after seeing one
being ridden on the beach at Aberlady in East Lothian,
Scotland. I had
been toying with the idea for a while, having come across
them on the Internet but had initially discounted
the idea when I realised that you had to build them from
scratch (I'd not built a complete bike before) and also that they were rather expensive.
However, I tracked own the rider I'd seen and after
a visit to Bruce to see his bike, I was smitten.
Why did you
decide to build a second Pugsley?
Basically, I wanted a second bike that I could keep as
"minimal" as possible for some of the more challenging
locations where I wanted to ride and film. I could remove
the racks and mudguards from my original Pugsley but that is
just too much hassle. The original Pugsley will be used for
"normal" rides as before. (Note: I've since sold
my original Pugsley and now ride the second bike)
you test ride a Pugsley before buying?
Yes, Bruce Mathieson aka CoastKid, a fellow Pugsley owner and rider who lives
about 30 minutes from my house, kindly allowed me to test
ride his bike.
did you come across the Surly Pugsley?
I first came across the Surly Pugsley on the Internet
one evening when I was looking for information on Land
Rovers. At the time I was thinking of buying a Land Rover to
adapt for off-road driving at a club course in Fife and saw
an article on the Pugsley on The Hub in the Forest web site.
much does your Pugsley weight?
The Pugsley is heavier than my Dawes Ultra Galaxy but lighter
than a cheap steel-framed bike.
Pugsley with racks & mudguards - 19.3 kg or 42.5 lbs.
bike, Dawes Ultra Galaxy, 13.1 kg or 28.9 lbs.
Mountain bike, Genesis iOiD, 13.6 kg or 30 lbs.
it easy to source all the components?
Yes and no. Most of the components were easy enough to
source using the Internet although a few items, namely the
frame and tyres were out of stock at all the UK suppliers I
contacted and delivery times were about 3 months. I actually
ordered these items from the US and they arrived in a few
days although I did pay a bit more for customs charges, etc.
is so great about the Surly Pugsley?
The great thing about the Pugsley is that you can just
keep riding when the trail runs out, particularly onto the
beach. The fat tyres also make it more comfortable on dirt
trails, gravel roads, forest tracks and game trails.
do you prefer to ride your Pugsley?
I much prefer to ride the Pugsley along the
coast, making use of the beach itself and any trails or
paths found in the dunes, cliff top or beach head. I also
enjoy riding the narrow trails found alongside many of the
rivers on the region.
much does it cost to build a Pugsley?
Overall it cost about £2500 to build my
specification of the Surly Pugsley, although you could
probably do it for between £1500 and £2000 depending on
component choice. The frame, tyres and rims will set you
back about £800 alone.
it difficult to ride with those tyres?
I would say there is more resistance with the fat
tyres and I would guess I generally run about one gear lower
than my ordinary mountain bike. But to be honest, itís so
much more fun riding a Pugsley that I find it does not
gearing system did you decide on?
I went for the enclosed Shimano Alfine 8-speed
hub mainly because it kept everything neat and tucked away
from the sand and sea water it would encounter on many of my
rides. The ability to change gear while stationary is also a
great benefit for this type of riding.
did you prepare the bike for beach riding?
To help protect the bike from the corrosive
effects of saltwater I sprayed the inside of the frame with
WD40 and used waterproof grease on all bolts, nuts and
bearing surfaces. I also power wash the bike after every
ride, as well as cleaning and lubricating the chain.