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Wednesday, March 23
80 mm travel forks?
Good morning blogladites!

Thought I would throw this out for opinion. Last fall i attempted to run a 100 mm travel fork on my bianchi. It seemed like i was constantly fighting steering and comfort issues that the fork introduced to the 80 mm frame design. I was a little bummed because the minute 2 was super plush. However the main trouble i was having was when i would get the fork up to what i consider higher speeds the change in the HT angle seemed to make the bike steer wide or slow basically off the trail at wilderness. When thats your main riding spot somethings gotta be fixed! So i've been running a rigid fork for about six months and it works purdy good in the park but its like a friggin jack hammer at platte! I gonna change it out just thought i would see what opinions were out there! mw i would definately like your input on white brothers!
Anonymous Anonymous said...
80mm, 100mm,
i've been running the Talis at full exstension 5inch since I got it, feals weird whenever I ride it at 100 or 80, I do however use the lockout like it's going out of style whenever I stand up to sprint, or climb anything at platte. but then I'm weird, and I don't ride much. so my opinion is kinda mute.... sorry

Blogger debaser said...
I'm trying to come up with a cheap 80 for the little ladies new ride...

Blogger redstone said...
Speaking of 80mm forks, I just put a very sweet Sid Athena on a bike last night. Damn! Not really an everyday fork, but it's the real deal for racing. Carbon steerer, pop lock, etc. Crap it's light, too.

Anyway, I hear what you're saying bdiddy. An extra inch o' travel bumps the head angle about a degree slacker. I ran the Tracer more at 4" than 5" just because it made the front end wag a little climbing the steep stuff.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Skareb Platinum
easy external adj.
high end Manitou forks rule
3.3 lbs

Blogger mw said...
rigid. i've always thought if you had suspension up front then you need it in the rear to balance the bike. therefore if you don't have rear sus then go rigid up front. but that's just me. see what you think after you get the el salty. i'd say wait until then to make up your mind about your bianchi

Blogger Chaybo said...
Well if it were mine...i'd think about wills suggestion...maybe try a 2.4 mutanoraptor up front for a bit. If you're gonna fork it then i'd suggest throwing on an 80mm Zoke...the 2004 Marathon SL would be ideal, but expensive too. Italian fork/ italian frame...doesn't get much cooler. The manit2 sounds like a nice route also, but i'd wait out for the 06' skarebs and 30mm stanchions.

If you want forks on the cheap...keep your eyes peeled for an older Z2 bomber on ebay Doesn't get any easier for maintence than the occasional oil, and upper seal change.

Blogger mg said...
well, you all knew i'd have an opinion on this one, so here it is... it might not be what you expect.

i've had both good and bad experiences with running 100mm travel forks on 80mm adjusted frames. my first real experiment with it on a hardtail was my 2000 schwinn, on which it worked very well. i actually liked the bike better with 100mm than with 80mm.

when i got my adept (keep in mind this it's an fs bike), i did the 100mm fork again (even though the bike was set up for 80mm). again, the results were sweet -- for me.

but then on my last three bikes, (two palominos and my new kona king kikapu (kkk?)), they were/are all adjusted for 100mm. when i'd extend the travel on my talas (on the palominos) past 100mm, they started to handle all floppy-like. similarly, i've found that my kona likes to stick with 100mm forks too.

the kicker for me is my new kona explosif -- my singlespeed, which is designed around an 80mm fork. i've got my 100mm black super on the front of it, and honestly, i'd probably prefer an 80mm fork on that bike. it just takes too long to turn! if i was always going 30 mph, that'd be cool, but on a singlespeed, i rarely hit 20, let alone 30. i'll take the extra maneuverability of the shorter fork anyday (and might soon).

i wouldn't fight your intuition on this one. if 100mm makes the frame handle worse, it's just not worth it. go 80mm... or you could just take carp's advice and do the switchable manitou with 80 or 100mm of travel.

good luck dude!

Blogger debaser said...

I like Chad's all Italian idea. I've been very loyal to Manitou, the Marz on the 29'er is the first non Manitou in... (barring the brief RST incident)... Damn, since my Judy SL??? Wow... Anyway, I've not quite got it set up right, and I'll give it an ok, mostly because it's darn flexy. Which was my biggest complaint about my last Mars (circa 2001), that it was flexy.

Regarding Matt's post, I've run 80 on the Homegrown for years and that was perfect. The 120 on the Rocket was great down, but overkill most of the time, downright floppy on climbs.

Here's a Q for Dbiddy, was your Bianchi designed around 63 or 80? Regardless, you know what you like with a bike you've had that long, so do it.

Blogger mw said...
man. once you've had a 500 dollar fork come apart on you then its hard to recommend that company. that's what happened on my white. great for a while but the coating totally peeled off on the legs. and i was real good about maint on that fork. damm. that was a bummer.

the dark knight just bought a NOS x-vert super. that's my vote for greatest fork ever. and you could dummy it down to 80mm.

i'm still flying the rigid flag for the time being...

Blogger mw said...
i said "flying the rigid flag"

i should have said "flying the rigid flag pole!!!"

Blogger bdiddy said...
Hey thanks for the opinions.

I will have to say that i do intend to purchase a rigid for for this bike one day. IF or a kelly fo sure not till winter though! MW i do remember your white bros. woes now that you mentioned them. Just been seeing them alot lately and the have that earley manitou all machined look that i like so much :) if they had the EFC color scheme i would have bought one on that alone.

MG i was in full on experimental mode with this thing and tweaked the bike alot but couldn't get the setup to make me smile.

ganz bike designed around 80 mm travel. i also like the Italian fork/ italian frame combo. You said your zoke is flexi on your 29 er? That seems to be oppisite of everything i have heard i have always heard the were the stiffest fork around(single crown).

Blogger mg said...
the marzocchi on my bontrager (a '99 z-2 BAM, if memory serves correct) was stiff for its time, but that was when it was being compared to other forks of the time. today, i find marzocchi forks to be par for stiffness, no better. when they were the only ones using 30mm stanctions, that was their edge. now everyone uses 30mm (or 32mm) stanctions. the market has changed quite a bit in the past few years in that respect.

Blogger debaser said...
My Marz is an 02. The casting is completely different now... For instance, on mine, the brake studs still attach the lowers: Take 'em out, fork comes apart... I think this fork's externals have more in common to Matt's old fork than the new ones. I can see the fork flexing forward back, and feel a lot more twisting than my blacks, or even my older Mars. This fork is a bit taller tho...

Where's Redstone? he's got a brand new Marathon, sure looks beefy.