Vicious Thunder Wing Fad Bike Build out


Well-Known Member
I am in the city for a bit and perusing CL the other night I came across an 06' Custom steel fat bike made by Vicious Cycles in PA. I am in OR so it has migrated aways. Price was too good to pass up for what was probably a $5k build when new, even has a Chris King headset....Nice paint job and some of those funky Shimano straight bar brifters they had back then that failed to catch on but work just fine. Hydro brakes and a 2spd crank with a little old granny ring that is kind of cute seen thought the eyes of today.

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I live on the coast and like to ride beaches, better when I don't ram myself into them @ 20mph but I digress, and going to get an AliExpress 48v 500w 135mm spaced brushless geared hub motor laced to a fat bike rim to convert it to an eFad Bike for beaching with. Although I have gotten along just fine with my various bikes with tires ranging from 40c to 3.0 to date I have to admit that even though I don't really see my self as a fat biker this one was just too cool, quality, and cheap to pass up. I have wanted to put a front hub motor to this purpose for quite awhile actually and have tried to talk others into it without success.

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Stock photo of the wheel but I won't be needing any suspension for the beaches and bike paths that will be this bikes terrain. Maybe the odd logging road though just cause there are so many where I live but that is what my Z1 is for....

Will use my spare 48v 720wh Z1 battery in a Stashers tt bag and a controller with throttle and cruise control and a minimal display so very simple there. Beach riding is an up and back or vice versa affair depending and some are 20 or so miles unobstructed during an ebb cycle so that should be plenty of range. Thing is the bike is a little small for me so I will probably just end up passing it on to a smaller person but sometimes the best part is in the build up!

I'll check back in as I progress. The motor wheel is going to take til mid November I think......but actually the best time to beach ride can be in the winter. Trouble is if you find a glass ball they are hard to carry! Hmmmm, might need a trailer.
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I'm with you on that Jimmy. My road bike is steel also and only abandoned steel mtb 2 yrs ago since 1982. As they say, "Steel is Real"
Let the games begin. Got a price reduction for the original saddle and pedals which didn't interest me anyway and replaced them with a few items I had in stock. Brooks Champion Flyer and a set of Crank Brothers Mallets that were white and I had to murder with some black rattle can.....

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Bummer is that my Z1 battery is too long so I am going to get two small 2170 cell 36v shrink wrap batteries and a smaller tt bag. Not sure what I'll end up with for wh's, hoping for 480wh's and one should do ok for enough for casual rides and slip the other in the back pack I wear for longer missions. Planning is variable.
Can the tt bag idea and full speed ahead on the Serapé themed triangle frame bag. This model is the perfect dimension in SM.

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The green one of course and with the dimensions now I can get Herbert to build me a triangle battery and be able to stash the necessary clunky Chi controller, as small as possible and wires made more possible by the switch to 36v. Most important feature is cruise control and many have that so no problem.

I originally thought that the front fork was a 135mm which is standard for fat bikes of that era but upon picking it up today I found it is actually a 100mm QR. The front wheel came out hard to fit it in my car and it looks like one dropout is a bit out of whack but it went in ok? Definitely going to need torque arms but it looks like the small grin ones will work. But it will be alot easier to source a hub motor and in fact put a Bafang G311 on order for it. Run on 36v with a peak of under 500w should be plenty of assistance for the bikes intended purpose for use on primarily flat terrain. Found and ordered a 36h i65 rim which I was fretting wasn't going to be easy.

As I predicted the bike is a bit small for me but I could safely extend the seatpost enough for decent leg extension, setting the saddle back on the rails and rotating the bars forward some it actually isn't too bad. I took the bike to an area near me with sandy trails to try it out unassisted and did a 4 mile ride. Started out with 10psi in the tires but bogged down in a sandy section and let out some air. Gained traction but was like riding a bouncy house on harder ground. Probably let out too much! Tire psi is always something that needs to be snuck up on I find and didn't have a pump to fool around with it.

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I crossed path's with a gentleman of the XXXXl size on an Aventon fat bike that claimed that fat tires float on sand which I don't agree with. While the extra width and the ability to run lower psi due to overall volume can be tailored to riding super soft surfaces the overall weight of the bike/rider won't allow one to magically float around. For sure the assist I am going to add will help with keeping up momentum though and looking forward to getting to that level. Otherwise I'll keep riding my Z1 thank you very much! It would have taken the road in the picture at speed no problem whereas on the Vicious it as pretty slow going but a good workout.
Well things are moving along much faster than I expected. Found an i65 36h rim and as the fork spacing is 100mm I can finally test a Bafang G311 Geared hub motor. Only going to run it on 36v @ 14A for a 500w peak. Ordered the controller with the all important cruise control ability and put in a request with Herbert for a 500wh triangle battery. Actually going to get two because they won't be that big or heavy and for extended missions the spare can be carried easily in my pack. Will help to keep the overall weight down to and should still do 25miles or so on the one. My lots of sand riding loop is 20 miles so I'm confident it will do that on one battery but some of the stretches of beach I have on my wish list are 20 miles long.

Just got to figure out spoke lengths and get some Sapim Strongs on order and that should do it for the capital expenditures and then it will be down to the get it done phase.
Test fitting the frame bag.

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The battery fits in just right, you can kind of see a bit of a bulge in the bag, and plenty of room for the controller if I can figure out a way to get it enough air flow. Power demands will be light however as it is going to a female who doesn't weigh much.

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Battery has 21700 5A cells.

Still need a 36v controller, magnet sensor and display.