1987 Fat City Fat Chance
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Make: Fat City
Model: Fat Chance
Year: 1987
Size: 21 in.
Color: blue
Serial Number: 87501
Frame: tig welded steel - True Temper AT
Fork: unicrown
Headset: Shimano 600 - 1 in. threaded
Front Derailler: Shimano XT
Rear Derailler: Shimano XT
Rear Cogs: Shimano XT 12-28 (6-speed)
Hubs: Shimano XT
Rims: Specialized X26
Brakes: Shimano XT - canti front / u-brake rear
Levers: Shimano XT
Shifters: Shimano XT
Cranks: Shimano XT 26/36/46 (bio-pace)
Bottom Bracket: press-in
Pedals: Shimano XT
Bar: Fat City aluminum 24 in.
Stem: Ritchey Force 130mm 1 in. quill
Seat Post: Strong 26.4
Saddle: Avocet Touring III

What are the Chances?

In 1987 there were four frames offered by Fat City Cycles: the Fat Chance, the Team Comp (with steeper angles and built from a lighter tubeset), a Trails frame, and the newly introduced Wicked Fat Chance (same angles as the Team Comp, but heaver tubes and fork). The Fat Chance was the continuation of the original frame design introduced in 1982.

The Fat Chance came with 69 degree head angle, 72 degree seat angle, the choice of SunTour roller cam or Shimano U-Brakes in the rear, and a price of $659 for a frameset (which included Fat's press-in bottom bracket, a headset, and seat post). Complete bikes were listed at $999 built with Shimano Deore components. However, my bike was built with Shimano XT. Further details can be found in the 1987 Fat City catalog.

Based in Sommerville, Massachusetts, Fat City was one of the few and likely the most influential east coast frame builder. Fat City was to the east coast what Ritchey, WTB, and Yeti were to the west coast.

Fats were available with various "unusual" paint schemes. This bike however was delivered with one of the stock colors for '87. Standard colors for Fat Chance frames were "bright royal blue" or "glossy black" with forks available in black, blue or yellow. Options for colors and components were long.

The Fat Chance makes a great commuter or around town bike, and is still at home on the trails. Even with the relatively slack head tube angle, the bike rides very well off-road. While maybe not a "racing machine," it makes a great all-day trail bike. With numerous rack mounts, I'm contemplating trying it out on an off-road tour. We'll see how that goes.


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