BTR ‘Roamer’ review

The idea of having a custom built bike has been lurking around in my head long before I got in to riding fat. To have that prefect bike, made just for me.

Since I got my first fatbike back winter 2013-14 I realized fatbike is the thing if you live where I live (latitude N66 Swedish Lapland). We get at least six months of hardcore winter and loads of trails to ride. My Salsa Mukluk has been fantastic on these trails. But in the summer I’m more of a trail rider. Lots of my riding buddies are on squishy enduro bikes and I like to ride fast and quite aggressive, but we’ve also got the sandy shores of the Bay of Bothina. After a few years I started to search for a more aggressive fat bike. But none of the stock bikes did it for me. So I finally took the step to custom.

Deciding whom to contact was hard. My eyes were fixed at the American builders, REEB, Oddity, Moonmen among others. But the cost to import from the US is just to high. Then I stumbled over BTR-Fabrications in the UK. Not fat bike builders but with the craftsmanship and attitude I was looking for. Burf and Tam (The B and T in BTR, R is for racing) makes super slack and endurable hardtails like the Ranger. The all mountain hardtail is my second favorite after the fat bike. To get a Ranger-inspired fat bike from BTR should be spot on. So I shot them an email and Tam was on it from the start. He actually had been looking for a reason to make a fatty.

I shared my thougts. Short chain stays, slack head angle, 120 mm front suspention for summer and rigid fork for winter and bikepacking. Tam did all the design with my fatbike knowledge and input. And thus the BTR Roamer was born.

After a few long months and loads of emails back and fourth the frame landed on my door step and damn it was a piece of art.

The frame is made of 631 Reynolds tubing, all housing is internal in brass tubes including dropper post. Bottom bracket is 100 mm and rear spacing is 177 mm through axle. That was one of my requests. It will take 4.6” tires and i think that is the sweet spot, even for winter. Also make the bike less tractor like.

It rides like a dream. The slack head angle, 67 degrees, and short stays (435mm) makes the bike fast and stable yet very playful. I’ve only ridden it on the local trails yet but it turned out even better then I ever could dream of. The reach is longer then my Mukluk that is size medium. But it feels spot on. Can´t wait to get more miles on this baby. Going custom takes lots of patience but it sure was worth the wait!

Geo:

Reach (A): 450mm
Stack (B): 671.7mm
Seat Tube Length (C): 420mm
Effective Top Tube (D): 639.7mm
Bottom Bracket Drop (E): 70.3mm
Effective Chain Stay Length (F): 435mm
Wheelbase (G): 1195.7mm
Head Angle (H): 67deg
Effective Seat Angle (I): 74.2deg
Actual Seat Angle (J): 73deg
Head Tube Length (K): 130mm
Headset Lower Cup Stack (L): 14mm
Fork Axle-Crown (M) (Bluto): 531mm
Fork Offset (N): 51mm

Build:

Bars: Custom Titanium form Oddity cycles 800 wide, 15 degerees backsweep 1” rise
Stem: Thomson X4
Seatpost: CB high line 31.6
Gears: Shimano Xt 1×11
Breaks: Shimano Xt 203 mm discs
Cranks: Raceface Aeffect
Pedals: Shimano Saint
BB: Hope
Headset: Hope
Weels: DT Swiss BR 710 on Hope Fatsno hubs
Fork winter: Custom BTR 853 steel fork with anything cage mounts for winter
Fork summer: Not decied yet but leans towards Manitou Mastodon 120 mm

Author: Olov Stenlund

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1 Comment

  1. Don’t want one of those at all. Nope. Not one bit. :-)

    Nice bike!

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