Suspension forks or no suspension forks?

Discussion in 'Mountain Bikes' started by J . Brian Chamb, Apr 20, 2003.

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  1. Seems to be a lot of argument over this subject. I'm not a serious mountain biker...in fact, I
    haven't ridden in a couple of years. But as I already stated in a previous post, I'm getting back
    into it. I don't plan on riding off the face of a cliff anytime soon, but as soon as I build some
    strength back into my knees, I will be taking on some minor to moderate trails. What's the popular
    school of thought on suspension forks? I'll be riding a $800 Trek bike so keep that in mind when
    recommending a fork.

    Thanks, Brian
     
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  2. Watimena

    Watimena Guest

    Get em if you can afford them they're good fot any off road riding..... Does your bike have a 1 and
    1/8 inch steering tube? Because if it does not you probably won't be able to get any that fit.....

    J

    "J. Brian Chamberlin" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >
    > Seems to be a lot of argument over this subject. I'm not a serious mountain biker...in fact, I
    > haven't ridden in a couple of years. But as I already stated in a previous post, I'm getting back
    > into it. I don't plan on riding off the face of a cliff anytime soon, but as soon as I build some
    > strength back into my knees, I will be taking on some minor to moderate trails. What's the popular
    > school of thought on suspension forks? I'll be riding a $800 Trek bike so keep that in mind when
    > recommending a fork.
    >
    > Thanks, Brian
     
  3. Westie

    Westie Guest

    "J. Brian Chamberlin" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >
    > Seems to be a lot of argument over this subject. I'm not a serious mountain biker...in fact, I
    > haven't ridden in a couple of years. But as I already stated in a previous post, I'm getting back
    > into it. I don't plan on riding off the face of a cliff anytime soon, but as soon as I build some
    > strength back into my knees, I will be taking on some minor to moderate trails. What's the popular
    > school of thought on suspension forks? I'll be riding a $800 Trek bike so keep that in mind when
    > recommending a fork.
    >
    > Thanks, Brian
    >

    I thought that the debate over forks and suspension was well and truly over. They're a good thing
    was the general conclusion. The debate has moved on to the pros and cons of rear suspension. And
    even that is running out of steam as people keep coming to the conclusion that there isn't so much a
    right or a wrong; just pros and cons to both sides of that argument. Money (obviously) is an issue
    with suspension forks. Your weight is one of the big considerations too. I'm no great fork guru so
    I'll let one of the other guys help you pick a specific fork, but it would help if you mentioned how
    heavy you are.
    --
    Westie "Life is what happens while you're planning to do other things"
     
  4. Superslinky

    Superslinky Guest

    J. Brian Chamberlin said...

    > Seems to be a lot of argument over this subject. I'm not a serious mountain biker...in fact, I
    > haven't ridden in a couple of years. But as I already stated in a previous post, I'm getting back
    > into it. I don't plan on riding off the face of a cliff anytime soon, but as soon as I build some
    > strength back into my knees, I will be taking on some minor to moderate trails. What's the popular
    > school of thought on suspension forks? I'll be riding a $800 Trek bike so keep that in mind when
    > recommending a fork.
    >
    > Thanks, Brian

    I don't think there is much argument on suspension forks. There may have been one or two tongue in
    cheek comments that you don't need them to ride and there may be one or two purists who don't use
    them, but the vast majority of mountain bikes sold now have suspension forks. There is a reason for
    that. Riding a fully rigid bike on trails is a bone rattling experience that may leave you sore for
    days. That's what it does for me. If I did one lap of an area 8 mile loop, I would have nagging neck
    pain afterwards, and spinal pain is nothing to laugh off. My first full suspension bike is on order
    and should arrive by the weekend. I'm no expert on suspension bikes, but I know whereof I speak when
    it comes to rigid bikes, and I am gladly moving on.

    I did a lot of research on currently available bike parts as my original plan was to build a bike
    from hand picked parts. Most people prefer Marzocchi forks. RockShox are generally lighter, but
    widely considered to be way behind Marzocchis in relibility. My new bike comes with a RockShox Duke
    XC, which seems to be the one RockShox model that nobody has much bad to say about (thank god).
    Supergo has some 2002 Marzocchi models that are heavily discounted and look like great deals. Other
    online shops may have similar deals. Your LBS will likely be comparatively much more expensive, but
    they can install it and repair it if need be, and they won't hate you for buying online.
     
  5. Spider

    Spider Guest

    J. Brian Chamberlin <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Seems to be a lot of argument over this subject. I'm not a serious mountain biker...in fact, I
    > haven't ridden in a couple of years. But as I already stated in a previous post, I'm getting back
    > into it. I don't plan on riding off the face of a cliff anytime soon, but as soon as I build some
    > strength back into my knees, I will be taking on some minor to moderate trails. What's the popular
    > school of thought on suspension forks? I'll be riding a $800 Trek bike so keep that in mind when
    > recommending a fork.

    Marzocchi or Fox. Coil-n-oil (Keeps the cost down, and you never have to worry about the coil
    leaking out and leaving you with a flat fork.)

    There are those who say "Ride it rigid, and build skill." That's fine. But it's not the global
    solution. I prefer rigid for some stuff, and suspension for others, but overall, I prefer
    suspension. The real answer is "What do *you* need?" I can't answer that, and neither can
    anyone else.

    After this weekend, I have found that even moderate suspension travel, even up front, can change
    the bike's handling enough to be a distraction if you're used to rigid. Goto www.bikesource.com -
    they're having a Marzocchi close out (IIRC). Get a short-travel coil-n-oil high-quality fork.
    Good luck.

    Spider
     
  6. Bb

    Bb Guest

    On Mon, 21 Apr 2003 13:40:53 GMT, SuperSlinky wrote:

    > I don't think there is much argument on suspension forks. There may have been one or two tongue in
    > cheek comments that you don't need them to ride and there may be one or two purists who don't use
    > them, but the vast majority of mountain bikes sold now have suspension forks.

    The few "purists" tend to be a vocal sort, as well.

    Putting a suspension fork on a previously-unsuspended bike is an interesting experience. Steering
    with a suspension fork is a lot more mushy. I didn't find the weight difference to be a big deal.
    But as you say, it definitely can be a "bone-jarring experience" without them, particularly on
    rocky trails.

    > I did a lot of research on currently available bike parts as my original plan was to build a bike
    > from hand picked parts. Most people prefer Marzocchi forks. RockShox are generally lighter, but
    > widely considered to be way behind Marzocchis in relibility.

    An enthusiast newsgroup isn't really a good representation of "most people". I imagine most people
    have never heard of Marzocchi. They just use what's on their bike. If the don't ride it hard, and
    don't ride it a lot, that'll be the same fork that's on there 10 years later.

    -BB- To reply to me, drop the attitude (from my e-mail address, at least)
     
  7. crazy6r54

    crazy6r54 Guest

    Suspension fork it.

    Fire up MTB 03
     
  8. Superslinky

    Superslinky Guest

    BB said...

    > Putting a suspension fork on a previously-unsuspended bike is an interesting experience. Steering
    > with a suspension fork is a lot more mushy.

    I never got around to installing a fork on my old hardtail. I just decided a new bike would make me
    happier. Is the mushy steering because of the change in geometry?
     
  9. Bb

    Bb Guest

    On Tue, 22 Apr 2003 13:42:04 GMT, SuperSlinky wrote:

    > I never got around to installing a fork on my old hardtail. I just decided a new bike would make
    > me happier. Is the mushy steering because of the change in geometry?

    As you're carving around a turn, the suspension fork will compress. This is what makes the steering
    mushy, IME.

    --
    -BB- To reply to me, drop the attitude (from my e-mail address, at least)
     
  10. Jd

    Jd Guest

    J. Brian Chamberlin <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > I'm not a serious mountain biker.

    Wake up and thank God every day that you are not.

    Serious mountain bikers are assholes, the lot of them. If one is too serious to have fun while
    riding a mountain bike, they don't deserve to be on one.

    JD
     
  11. Mr Bonkers

    Mr Bonkers Guest

    > Serious mountain bikers are assholes, the lot of them. If one is too serious to have fun while
    > riding a mountain bike, they don't deserve to be on one.

    Well said!

    In my opinion 'to susp or not to susp' simply depends what you ride. You will never see a downhill
    racer riding rigid, you will rarely see a trials rider with suspension.

    > but as soon as I build some strength back into my knees, I will be taking on some minor to
    > moderate trails.

    I don't know your situation but it sounds like you have had some injury. If this is the case then I
    would say suspension would be a good thing as it will help limit the bouncing and jarring, which
    could potentially couse your knees and back some grief.

    Rob
     
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