What do your Fenders say about you..?

B Vivit tells us about the different fender options out there and who rides them.
Let's get through the rain while dreaming of summer again...

Let's get through the rain while dreaming of summer again...

Ok, while the rain is fresh in your mind, let's talk fenders and who uses what. I often feel you can tell what kind of person a rider is by the types of fenders they choose to use. Let's elaborate, shall we.
1. The Ass-Saver.
Yes, it's a real thing.  They retail for about $12 and origami into shape against your seat tube and point toward the sky behind you. What this really says about you is that you're a minimalist, or perhaps on a budget. But it also says that you're only out to save your own ass. All the spray you kick up behind you definitely lands on the other commuters and I'm sure what they all think you're a cheap-o who doesn't think about those around you in between dodging the drops off your fender and tire. Did you ever notice that people don't really follow you when it's raining, but rather they race to get in front of you, or drop far behind?
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2. The Clip-on PDW/SKS (most often seen on bikes in the wrong size).
I see a lot of these. They would actually work decently well if people didn't buy the wrong size for their wheel! Yes, they have sizes! It'll say 700c, but a lot of times I see a 700c wheel that is rocking the fender meant for a 26" wheel.  When installing these the fender should be close enough to the wheel that the very far tip should be pointed down toward the ground behind you. If the fender doesn't extend past the circumference of the wheel, you are still spraying those behind you with lovely Market Street sludge. If this is you, then you are part of a sadly misinformed population. They (the general they) still think the same thing about you; maybe they think you're trying..? But probably they are too busy dodging the road spray behind you.
[caption id="attachment_7834" align="alignleft" width="300"]SKS raceblade Pro Raceblade Pro[/caption]
3. Clip on half-wrap fenders; like the Race Blade.
You're thoughtful but maybe you don't have a lot of time or money. Or a whole lot of tire clearance. This bike is treated like a utilitarian vehicle of conscious choice, but just because you are woke doesn't mean that you need to spend an arm and a leg on the simple necessities for the whole two months of sporadic rain we get out of the year. Let's face it; fenders are heavier, extra pieces that create drag. Why carry them year round when you can go faster?
4. Full-wrap fenders - Plastic; like the SKS or Planet Bike.
You understand the classy appeal of fenders but this bike just doesn't need the classy look; in fact more of a sportif. Utilitarian in nature, you understand the trials of the road and know these are necessary but they don't have to be expensive. You might lube your chain but maybe you don't wipe down your bike after it rains; it's just going to get dirty again tomorrow.. Or you know that this is really the only way to protect yourself and others from a very soggy day.
5. Full-wrap fenders - Metal; like the Handsome Fenders or Velo Orange that we stock at Huckleberry.
You get it. This fender thing. You know what a Honjo is. You keep your bike looking clean and classy and you know that despite our actual weather needs; it's also aesthetic and less of a worry when it does rain. You don't scramble in the dark, wet mornings to dig through your bike accessory chest to find your rainwear and fenders, you've been watching the weather for weeks and knew it was coming. You plan and follow through; or plan to not plan at all. The weight and drag, ain't no thing when it comes to preparedness. For further consultation, here's Rivendell's thoughts too.
We're joking [mostly] but fenders aren't just about keeping you dry and comfortable, it's about making sure that your soggy day doesn't fly into someone else's face.
Stop on by for the Fall Sale and score an awesome Surly, Levi's, or Chrome Jacket on sale as we get ready for the new winter season!