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  1. #1
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    Thinking of a fork upgrade for my Bastard

    As I've posted before, I have an El Bastardo, which is currently configured with an XFusion Velvet front fork. As I understand it, this is a 26"/650b fork that in 26er mode would have 130mm of travel, but in 650b an internal adjustment is done which eliminates 10mm of travel making it a 120mm fork.

    Since the Bastardo is advertised as having 5.5 inches of rear travel, i.e., approximately 140mm, and since I prefer head angles that are just a leeetle more slack than what I presently have, I thought it might be a good idea to upgrade to a longer-travel fork.

    Right now I am considering either a White Brothers Loop, or perhaps a longer travel XFusion Velvet.

    With either of those, I was wondering if anyone can help with the following questions:

    1) will I "lose" 10mm of travel with the White Bros?
    2) if so, is a 150mm Loop too much fork for this bike frame?
    3) do the longer travel (140mm) Velvet forks still require the adjustment losing 10mm, making them effectively 130mm in 650b?
    4) what other forks might I consider that could clear my blunts w/ Nevegal 2.35s in the 140mm - 150 mm travel range?

    Thanks in advance for your replies!

  2. #2
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    what does your current fork measure out at from the center of the axle to the top of crown/bottom of headset race ?

    is it qr or 15/20mm ta?

  3. #3
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    I ride a El Ciclon converted to 650B (rear triangle of the bastardo) and I have had it with either a Fox F32 Float 140 or a TALAS 150. I prefer the setup with the TALAS 150 because it gives a slacker angle for downhills and I can shorten the travel if required for climbs. Both clear my Nevegal 2.35 on blunts and I have been very happy with having balanced travel front and rear. It seems you are not considering a Fox but I think they work very well in the travel range you are looking at and it would definitely slacken your bastardo. Whatever you end up doing, keep an eye on the BB height, this is the bad point of my set up so I have to use 30% sag on the rear shock to compensate.

  4. #4
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    jc , what bb height did you end up w / ?

    i just measured my forks AGAIN

    the 06 nixon 145 20mm t/a is 520mm

    the 10 white bros 130 float 20mm is 535mm

    go figure the "shorter" fork is "longer"

    the white also has less offset than the nixon , guessing in the 8-10mm less range

    the white is on my 650b chamuco right now and the nixon is on the fat possum , i'm gonna try the nixon on the ventana to steepen the rake and lower the bb just a smidge .

    i felt "less of a change" in the way the possum felt , geometry wise w/ the 650's on the possum , just changing wheels , than i did when i took another set of nixon qr 145mm forks (w/even less offset) w/ 26" wheels off the v and put the white/650b combo on

    striving to make it the best i can w/ what i have = tinkering + time on bike

  5. #5
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    I ended up with a BB height of about 14.5" unweighted, but it's much less than that when I ride. Also, the bastardo frame is corrected for 650B wheels while the El Ciclon is not, so I think a longer travel fork on a Bastardo frame should not affect the BB height as much.. It's been great to avoid pedal strike though!

  6. #6
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    You can easily convert a Hope Pro II to 15 QR so the TALAS 150 option is still valid. A TALAS 140 option is also possible and comes in 9mm QR....

  7. #7
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    jc ; "wow! 14.5 is a bit on high side eh ? do you find it feelin a little top heavy & having to muscle it in/out of corners, is it hard to hustle through switchbacks ? whats that feel like on a steep down ? does the back want to pass the front ?

    my chammy is JUST under 14 , like 13.85 or 9 , w/ pretty lax ha & tons of trail , it's so stable i think it will be fine if i steepen it up & i want my rig to carve a little more

    but back to your unit , maybe some offset bushings for the shock to get it down a little?

    internal top out shim in shock to do the same ?


    daves4mtb : i think there is a 145 nixon on ebay right now , iirc it is an "it" adj travel unit & goes down to 115. i know for certain (well at least my 3 diff versions of) they clear the bigger nevs and neos w/o any internal travel limiting needed .


    i think the velvets need some internal limiting but not 100% on that

    whats the other xfusion fork on the market , the 160 unit ? maybe that would be the way to go and although they do not need it , limit it to get the 140-150 you are looking for if it is too long .

    did'nt wb make a 150mm fluid at some point in time ? maybe hit them up and see if they can whip something up for you , i've heard they are easy to work w/

    kinda jacked your thread a bit here but was trying to point out the fact that all forks of equal travel are not the same "size" and you may want to investigate the actual #'s from a to TOP of c .

    i play w/ motorcycles a bit and have found that riders "feel" a change in the trail much more than a rake change . you may like a slacker ha because of the added trail that normaly comes w/ a longer fork w/ the same offset so keep that in mind when searching .

    food for thought

  8. #8
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    Surprisingly, the bike is quite stable given the high BB and does not feel top-heavy, but it is rather "tippy" in switchbacks and when carving corners. No problems on steep downs but I have a dropper seatpost... All in all, great fun to ride but I am saving pennies for a true 650B FS frame with a lower BB.

  9. #9
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    I run a Cannondale Lefty MAX Carbon w/PBR with 140mm of travel. I got it from Project 321. It is has a very plush ride and is stiffer than any of the 32mm stanchion forks. It is also more expensive.

  10. #10
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    1) will I "lose" 10mm of travel with the White Bros?
    No travel reduction needed. However AC height for 150 setting is 534mm, for the 140 setting it's 524mm and the 130 setting it's 514mm. A Fox 140mm A/C is 511mm and a 150 is 521mm. Velvet fork in the 130mm 650B setting I presume is the same 519mm as the 140mm setting. It's just travel reduced 10mm to 130mm.

    2) if so, is a 150mm Loop too much fork for this bike frame?
    Do the math. 20mm increase in A/C height = approx 1 degree. Where do you want to be, and how much travel? Remember, you can also get a custom head set to get the HA you want in order to keep the front end/BB height in check. Obviously Cane Creek is one but there are some restrictions so I like this one. Ofanaim.net Head Angle Set

    3) do the longer travel (140mm) Velvet forks still require the adjustment losing 10mm, making them effectively 130mm in 650b?
    Yes, that's what X Fusion says. No one has been able to provide visual proof this is true. It's a question I also asked and was curious about. I would like to see a pic of this fork in the 140 setting with a Nev. or Neo-Moto 650B totally bottomed out.

    4) what other forks might I consider that could clear my blunts w/ Nevegal 2.35s in the 140mm - 150 mm travel range?
    My 2008 140mm Fox Talas with a new Neo-Moto 2.3" and slammed down can just touch the bottom of the crown. Nev. 2.35" is 2mm taller so it should actually hit. That being said does anyone ever get full travel out of a Fox fork? 5mm shim and you'd be totally safe if that was a true concern. You get the most travel with the least A/C height with the Fox fork. Loop you get all the travel setting but it's a taller fork. Velvet is kind of in between but you are technically supposed to travel reduce it to 130mm. If you go to bigger 36mm stanchion type fork you get more A/C height for given reduced travel and added weight. That coil? U-Turn Nixon might be fun to play with giving you lots of easy adjustment possibilities.
    Hope that helps a little and BTW Ventana should have their new 650B frame ready sometime this spring. I gave then my wish list of specs including a 13.5"-13.75" BB height and NO lower. 68 degree HA was my choice, 74 degree STA, ISCG, 12mm axle, big tapered head tube (for easy play with Angle Set type HS), reasonable CS length and the rest for them to figure out. Their full production bikes will use the new Fox 34mm 650B fork which will arrive this fall as a 2013 model. The specs for this are out to OEM's already.
    2013 Banshee Spitfire V2 650b

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