Stolen dream bike found 26 years later? Fat Chance (TC)!

shamobius

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Back in 1989 I had just sold my custom Bradbury Manitou because I felt it was too tall for me in the front end. I was looking for a smaller steel bike for riding technical singletrack. Back in those days (pre internet!), if it wasn't in a magazine or a bike you saw in a shop or out on the trails, you wouldn't know about it. Of course Fat City Cycles was already legendary for their trail bikes. That summer two articles were printed in MBA that convinced me I needed a Fat Chance Team Comp.

FatTeamComp1C by shamalama88, on Flickr

Chris-1C by shamalama88, on Flickr

I scraped together my hard earned sheckles and placed my order through the bike shop I worked at (Russ Hay's). I asked for custom cable routing, with top tube cable guides running at 5:00 - 7:00 - 11:00, giving what I thought were the cleanest lines to the back of the bike. For paint I wanted the metallic grey-blue of James Dean's Porsche from that infamous poster popular in the late 80s, with matching green forks and handlebar in the same tone. I had wheels built while I was waiting for the frame: blue bodied, silver flanged 36 hole Bullseye hubs on silver Mavic Oxygen rims.
It was the sweetest bike BY FAR I had ever ridden. It steered itself and was so comfortable on long rides. It honestly felt alive, and I could ride it on pavement hands free forever, no matter how drunk I was.

1989 Fat Chance Team Comp angled by shamalama88, on Flickr

1989 Fat Chance Team Comp side view by shamalama88, on Flickr

I had it for about two years before it was stolen in early 1992; I went in to a corner grocery store about four blocks from my home, came out a minute later and it was gone...
 

M-Power

Old School Grand Master
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Amazing story and no doubt the resto build thread will be epic. The article says Chris didnt make many Team Comps. They are incredibly rare. Maybe only the early 80s fillet brazed FATs are rarer. They were nearly 3X the price of a Wicked frame at the time and used the best tubing and components available then. Dillsburg Certified Aircraft tubing for the rear triangle, crazy expensive, Tange Prestige for the main tubes, renown GP Wilson dropouts and all tig welded with silver 'only' by the successor to Gary Helfrich at FAT City Cycles, Scott Bengston. The tubes are incredibly thin and difficult to tig weld together perfectly. If you ever see the welds on one they are the neatest non filed down tig welds you will find on a steel bike. These frames hum when you ride fast on the road and I dont mean knobbly tyre noise.

Only 4 of these in Europe afaik. A Pink one in Switzerland, Green one in Poland and two in the UK.
 

kingbling

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Re: Dream Bike Stolen - Found 26 Years Later? Fat Chance (TC)!!!

How did you get it back, whats the rest of the story, what happens next etc.
 

M-Power

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Tomac

FAT Chance made Mongoose branded race bikes for Tomac.
 

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uno-speedo

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Re: Dream Bike Stolen - Found 26 Years Later? Fat Chance (TC)!!!

You need to go buy a lottery ticket. You'll probably win!
 

raidan73

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Re: Dream Bike Stolen - Found 26 Years Later? Fat Chance (TC)!!!

You had a great eye for detail even back then Shamus. An extra thumbs up for the Ground Control S tyres. You've set this up to be a killer build thread with nostalgia by the bucket load.

Great info to add to the story Will :cool:
 

shamobius

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Re: Dream Bike Stolen - Found 26 Years Later? Fat Chance (TC)!!!

kingbling":8glsnzty said:
How did you get it back, whats the rest of the story, what happens next etc.

Good question kingbling! I was getting to that, but then 'real life' (a.k.a. my job) got in the way...

Anyways, after the bike was stolen I was of course gutted. It really took the wind out of my biking sails, and I kind of lost interest in the sport, fostered other activities. I replaced the Team Comp with a 1992 Rocky Mountain Altitude, very similar to the one in this catalog photo:

628958d1311812747-what-1992-altitude by shamalama88, on Flickr

But I never really bonded with the bike. It felt dull by comparison. Part of that was probably transitioning to front suspension on the pretty terrible first wave of shock forks (Rock Shox Mag21)(I like the typo in the ad "4.6mm of travel" that's about what it felt like). But yeah, I was just kind of 'meh' about the bike in general.
 

M-Power

Old School Grand Master
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We all know shed loads about Yos, which are not that rare by comparison to its older 'better riding' brother, the Team Comp.

We were all young and poor back then. It took a looooong time to save for such a special bike and all the choice parts. Then for it to be so cruelly stolen, rattle can sprayed and badged as a fkin Kona in disguise for 26 years !!! wtf...but like Able...its spirit talked....and its being finally set free to live out the remainder its 'hopefully' long life as a beautiful restored Team Comp.

A true bike Cinderella story :D
 

kingbling

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M-Power":3l3tx5h1 said:
We all know shed loads about Yos, which are not that rare by comparison to its older 'better riding' brother, the Team Comp.

We were all young and poor back then. It took a looooong time to save for such a special bike and all the choice parts. Then for it to be so cruelly stolen, rattle can sprayed and badged as a fkin Kona in disguise for 26 years !!! wtf...but like Able...its spirit talked....and its being finally set free to live out the remainder its 'hopefully' long life as a beautiful restored Team Comp.

A true bike Cinderella story :D


Whoa slow down wheres the spoiler alert !!! where you getting your info from :LOL:
 
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