S-Trax conversion kit could make yo' bike into a snowbike
As winter drags on in the Northern Hemisphere, many cyclists are really starting to miss honest-to-goodness outdoor riding. Well, they could buy a fatbike, or … they could get the S-Trax kit, which lets users temporarily convert their mountain bike into a snowbike.
Officially known as the S-Trax Snowbike Conversion Kit, the setup is manufactured by Austrian company FasterBikes. It consists of two parts: a ski that replaces the front wheel, and a "Crawler" unit that replaces the rear wheel.
Along with the snowmobile-like lugged rubber track and rollers that one would expect, the Crawler also incorporates a mechanical disc brake and an Enviolo Extreme hub-incorporated stepless gear system. One chain runs from the bicycle's existing crankset to that hub on the drivetrain side of the bike, while another chain runs from the hub down to the track on the non-drivetrain side.
Unlike a similar kit made by Canadian manufacturer Envo, the S-Trax does not come standard with a motor. This means that if you don't already have an electric mountain bike with a mid-mount motor, you'll be turning the Crawler's track by muscle power alone. If you do have a mid-motor eMTB, though, a pedaling cadence of 60 to 70 rpm should reportedly be sufficient to maintain a speed of 25 to 30 km/h (16 to 19 mph), in a higher gear ratio.
It should also be noted that unless their bike has a mid-mount gearbox (such as a Pinion), Envo users aren't able to switch between different gears while they ride, whereas S-Trax users are. A FasterBikes representative we spoke to additionally claims that S-Trax has fewer problems maintaining a good drivetrain chain line, and that the kit's front ski provides better handling than the snowboard used in the Envo system.
Should you be interested, the S-Trax Snowbike Conversion Kit is available now via the FasterBikes website, priced at €2,499.99 (about US$2,652). For comparison, the Envo Electric SnowBike Kit – along with a battery, which is sold separately – goes for a combined CAD$3,684 (US$2,699).
The S-Trax kit can be seen in use, in the video below.