Darth Pugsley

4 12 2008
Darth Pugsley

Darth Pugsley

I’ve been trolling Flickr for Surly Pugsley build ideas.  Just to see what other folks have done and kill some time while I wait for my last few parts to arrive.  I stumbled upon this nice Pugsley that is built up similar to what I have in mind.

Tswg2 on Flickr

All photos: Mike McCrank

I’ll be using a Shimano Alfine IGH on the back as well.  For all weather shifting.  I’ve read encouraging accounts of Alfines used in Northern Canada with success.  I’ll have a SS or fixed gear cog up front that I can swap in should the Alfine pack it in when it gets uber cold.  I’ve got the Alfine trigger shifter which I’m going to try.  Depending how I like it I’ll keep it or try the Nexus 8 twist-shifter instead.  I like the ability to dump multiple gears with the twist-shifter, but 1) I have an Alfine trigger shifter so might as well use it and 2) I haven’t really used triggers regularly for years so knows I may fall back in love.

Looks great with "normal" tires.

Looks great with normal rubber.

I’m surprised how nice the Pugsley looks with normal sized tires.  I’ll be putting some OMM racks on front & back.  I like the bars he used and will be trying some Thorn MK2 comfort bars which are similar. If I don’t love them I’ll swap in a set of MTB risers or a Titec H-bar.

I’ve scored some LX-ish Shimano hydraulic disc brakes which I’ll try.  I’ve never used hydraulics discs before, but I thought they might be better due to less maintenance in winter conditions and less likely to freeze up than mechanical discs.  If they don’t work out I’ll go with trusty Avid BB7s.

Just a little more waiting….



8 responses

4 12 2008

I’d hardly call those normal tires, unless of course, you’re comparing them to the Surly Endomorph’s. They are 29 x 2.4 Schwalbe Big Apples running on 38 mm wide Kris Holm rims. The only reason they look normal is because they are on a 22″ Pugsley frame. They’re a little heavy, but it rides like 1 to 2″ of suspension.

I’ll send you some updated photos too. I’m currently running it with PB Cascadia fenders, Cateye lights, a Topeak Mountain Morph pump and Kenda Small Block 8’s (29×2.1’s).

The big tires are on order and I hope to be riding them before x-mas.


4 12 2008

Hahaha…okay with the Pugsley the term “normal” is relative….=-)

4 12 2008


I enjoy looking at your site and admiring your bike addiction. You are like a one-man bike testing office.

I am curious about you strategy for tensioning the chain on the Pug? I notice some seem to get away with no Shimano tensioner despite vertical dropouts. What’s your plan? Shear luck or the ‘half-link’ approach?


4 12 2008

Thanks JL…I definitely have a bike problem!

The Pugsley has horizontal dropouts so I’ll just move the rear wheel back and forth to tension the chain. You can see the dropouts in this photo:


5 12 2008

Yeah Darth Pugsley (via BikeForums.net) inspired me to start saving for 29er rims for my pug. January, Feb at the latest, will be rolling some skinny tires for once (those same 2.35 big apples, ideally the new liteskins, unless it is still studded tire weather hereabouts which I hope it’s not)

6 12 2008


I’ve contemplated selling my ‘road wheelset’ for the pug so that I could afford to get a commuter specific bike. I haven’t actively tried selling them, or even priced out how much the parts cost me, but if the components I used are what you are looking at, let me know (via bikeforums) and we could discuss the option further.


20 12 2008
don Keith marlar

I wanted to tell you about my problems with hydralic brakes. They seem like a good idea until you need to get the air out of the lines. Because there is such a small amount of fluid in the system , you keep needing a refill when bleeding and that calls for more bleeding —and on and on. Reliablity of mechanical disk is much higher than hydralic.

2 02 2009
Mike’s 29er Pugsley Wheels for Sale « The Lazy Randonneur

[…] Mike is selling this 29er Pugsley wheel set for $750+shipping.  I had a look at it yesterday and it’s quite nice with low mileage used only for commuting. By adding these wheels to your Pug you can turn it into a “normal” 29er MTB, a commuter or an expedition touring bike. […]

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