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  1. #1
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    Fox F29RL fork travel change

    So I took my Fox 29er fork apart the other night, the one that came on my '08 Paragon. I wanted to see if I could change the travle to 100mm. I don't see any of the "spacers" that are mentioned by others here on the board and in the manual (the ones I'm not supposed to take out). That being said, I don't see a manual on Fox's page for the RL model, only the RLC.

    What do you guys think? Is it possible to change with what I have, or could/would I need a new cartridge from Fox?
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  2. #2
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    What does the inside of the other leg look like?


  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mld2t
    So I took my Fox 29er fork apart the other night, the one that came on my '08 Paragon. I wanted to see if I could change the travle to 100mm. I don't see any of the "spacers" that are mentioned by others here on the board and in the manual (the ones I'm not supposed to take out). That being said, I don't see a manual on Fox's page for the RL model, only the RLC.

    What do you guys think? Is it possible to change with what I have, or could/would I need a new cartridge from Fox?
    Is that the damper unit? i.e. isn't the spacer on the air side?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by b1umb0y
    Is that the damper unit? i.e. isn't the spacer on the air side?
    Yep, wrong side.

    Larry
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  5. #5
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    Doh!
    Professional Amateur. Disagree? Submit your grievances here.

  6. #6
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    And if a recall correctly from working on my 26" Fox's:

    It's not a spacer, it's a machined stop collar that's held in place with a small roll pin.
    Pop out the pin w/ a little punch, slide the collar over to the next hole and re-insert the pin.
    Travel adjusted, no spacers like you find inside a RockShok.

  7. #7
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    I thought the consensus was that they could be converted from 100mm to 80mm but not the other way around? Someone posted an email from a fox tech around here somewhere, but I'm too lazy to search.

  8. #8
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    Well well well, maybe that's the problem then! That is the damper side.

    When I opened up the air side and just saw oil. Is the machined stop collar at the bottom of the leg?

    Yo Paul Revere, it's Matt Day from Fooftown by the way!

  9. #9
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    It is just a spacer. But your fork looks very different than mine.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by shishku
    It is just a spacer.
    But where is the spacer exactly? It's not on the damper cartridge in the picture from what I was told above.

    Quote Originally Posted by shishku
    But your fork looks very different than mine.
    My fork also includes the legs & stanchions also, if that's what you mean.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mld2t
    ...it's Matt Day from Fooftown by the way!
    I remember you...used to ride a Yeti @ Wintergreen. Been awhile.


  12. #12
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    The spacer, is at the bottom of the air side under the oil, pop the lower bolt out, a assembly will fall out, ( if 80mm with C type spacer on the shaft, then a coil thats the negative coil, if 80mm remove spacer it'll let the forks go out further, job done.

    IF you've got the 100mm forks, then you'll need to purchase a spacer thats all, as you won't have 1 with the forks.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mld2t
    Well well well, maybe that's the problem then! That is the damper side.

    When I opened up the air side and just saw oil. Is the machined stop collar at the bottom of the leg?

    Yo Paul Revere, it's Matt Day from Fooftown by the way!
    What? are all of the Fooftown mafia converting to 29 now?
    Buschetti holding out?

    the spacer thingy you're looking for is down in the fork leg,
    but I'm totally guessing here sort of. In the spring side, you'll
    first see the white plastic piston w/ a bit of heavy oil sitting on
    top of it. Crack the bottom nut loose & push this up outta the
    fork, expect some spooge to drip onto the floor and find a
    clean spot on that crowded workbench. I converted from
    100 to 80 and the shaft had a couple different holes thru it.
    Pop out the roll pin, slide the collar to the next setting and
    press the pin back in place. Instead of a spacer, the stop
    collar itself moved. You're fork may or may not have a spacer,
    or may or not have two positions for the collar. good luck,
    and clean that bench!

    Jack Frost?

  14. #14
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    Per FOX the 80mm cannot be made into a 100mm. The 100mm can be choked down to a 80mm on the "spring side" by adding a spacer..
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  15. #15
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    So they've cut the stanchions shorter to save a few grams then, that SUCKS!!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Turveyd
    So they've cut the stanchions shorter to save a few grams then, that SUCKS!!
    Now this is the issue I have been running into as well. I was getting both answers from them and getting nowhere.

    A few weeks back I finally spoke with the guy who actually designed the whole thing. He said A-O-K for converting an 80 up to 100.

    I just got mine on Sunday, and I havent gotten to opening it up yet.

    However, I am already looking for a TALAS donor, Im not sure if it would work, but Im sure gonna try.

  17. #17
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    How about some pics of some one doing the conversion? My understanding or better yet hope is that the 80 mm can be converted up to the 100mm

  18. #18
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    Before mine came on a Superfly, I verified with Fox Tech Service that the 80 could be converted to 100. The answer was absolutely yes, and the guy was clearly frustrated by the rumor flying around that you could go from 100 to 80, but not the other way. Then I called back two days later, and got the same answer from a different tech.

    Mine showed up, and since I was out of town, my favorite wrench did the conversion. He said it took about 20 minutes, and gave me a little plastic spacer that came out, just in case I ever wanted to go back to 80 mm (never happen).

    Usually I do this stuff myself, but since I didn't this time, I can't comment on exactly how to do it, just that it definitely can be done.
    Whining is not a strategy.

  19. #19
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    Spacer comes in the box with the 100mm.

  20. #20
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    So what you guys are saying is that the F80 and the F100 are exactly the same forks, just set up differently at the factory?

  21. #21
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    I'll try to get into it tomorrow, and will take some pics for you all. Thanks for the info. It sounds promising; glad to hear it!

    And since I'm a pony I'm going to put on a 20t chainring.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by mld2t
    And since I'm a pony I'm going to put on a 20t chainring.
    chump.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by crux
    How about some pics of some one doing the conversion? My understanding or better yet hope is that the 80 mm can be converted up to the 100mm
    My 80mm was converted to 100mm by the shop I bought it from.

  24. #24
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    So I finally got a chance to open up the Fox F29RL again, this time I had great success (borat voice)!

    If you are going to do this, you need to essentially completely disassemble your fork. To start with, remove all the air out of the left leg. Remove the nuts at the bottom of each leg. After these nuts are off you can lightly tap on the bolt with a mallet to release them and push them into the legs, but have a couple catch pans or cups ready to collect the oil from each leg. There is about 150cc in the right leg, which is quite a bit. See the pic below.
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  25. #25
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    Once all the oil has drained, you can pull the lowers off. You'll probably need to remove your brake caliper or lever at this point as well.

    Once the lowers are off, take the top cap off the left leg (air side). Theres some low viscosity (thick) oil in there. Turn the bike upside down to drain this sludgy oil out.

    Next you can push the piston/spring assembly out, as the picture below shows.
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  26. #26
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    Once the piston/spring stack is removed you'll see the infamous spacer (to the right of my thumb). This plastic spacer has a notch in it and will pop off if you press on it firmly. Before and after pictures are below.

    Since my fork is so new I reused the oil that I carefully collected. I reassembled the piston/spring stack, put the top cap back on, slid the lowers on 90% of the way just enough to allow access to pour the oil back in. I put in 160cc of oil into the right leg. After you put oil back in both legs, put the nuts on and you should have 100mm of travel and ready to ride!

    This is the way I did it, there might be an easier way but I at least gained some insight into how the fork works by doing it this way. You may be able to simply take out the piston/spring stack without taking the lowers completely off thereby avoided removing the oil from the right leg, but I'm not sure.

    Thanks for the help, and good luck if you try it!
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  27. #27
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    Yeah, you can do it without pulling the lowers or draining the damper side. Tap the left side loose, and use something thin (like a wood dowel) to push on the end of the rod from the bottom and push it out the top of the fork.

    Larry
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  28. #28
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    Larry's right....

    Quote Originally Posted by Ventanarama
    Yeah, you can do it without pulling the lowers or draining the damper side. Tap the left side loose, and use something thin (like a wood dowel) to push on the end of the rod from the bottom and push it out the top of the fork.

    Larry
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    Once you do it that way and see how ridiculously simple it is you will kick yourself. It's about a 10 minute job, tops.

  29. #29
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    I'm glad somebody spoke up AFTER I tore the fork apart! Oh well, it's done and I have more travel, which was the goal!

  30. #30
    bcd
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    nice job guys!

  31. #31
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    Give us a ride report after you have ridden the newly converted fork. Im very interested to see if the increased travel has any effect on handling.

  32. #32
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    I changed mine back in December. I must say that I was not very impressed with the fork in 80mm.......seemed to blow through the travel way too quickly or was too stiff and didn't have enough travel. Now at 100mm the fork feels great It kick the front end up a little, but I adjusted with headset spacer and the stem. I can't say that it really affected the handling. I don't find that it has slowed it down any, and DH's are now a lot faster.

  33. #33
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    Ok have the fork apart (aftermarket version) and took out the spacer and getting ready to bolt it back up for a ride. In reading the Fox user manual on page 269 it is indicating that the 80mm can not be converted, but apparently this is possible on the OE versions. Is there any true difference between the 80 an 100 mm fork besides the spacer? ie length of bushings or sanctions or any other components?


    http://www.foxracingshox.com/fox_tec...elpEnglish.pdf

  34. #34
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    I think the rumor of not extending an 80 mm fork comes form the 26er forks where there is a weight difference between the 80 and 100 mm forks. I assume the stantions (and maybe other things?) are shorter on the 80 mm fork to acheive a lighter weight. That doesn't seem to be the case with the F29.

  35. #35
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    I have a 80mm OEM F29 RL fork. On page 276 of the manual under the F29 RL section, the manual clearly states, "An F100 can be lowered in travel to 80 mm, but an F80 cannot be increased to 100 mm."

    http://www.foxracingshox.com/fox_tec...elpEnglish.pdf

    Obviously people are doing it. Has anyone run into issues at all? Or is the section of the manual a "cut and paste" error taken from the 26er section?
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  36. #36
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    I was led to belive that the only real difference is that the 80 fork isnt supplied with the larger sized shim but the 100 fork comes with the smaller shim?


    I have a mate that has converted his to 120mm without any problems. Dont ask me how he did it, I think it envolved using other fox fork inners. It does however flex a bit more than the 100mm...
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  37. #37
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    You can go from 80 to 100 or 100 to 80 with the spacer. At 100 you don't have the spacer installed, at 80 you do. I've been running it for months now and it's been fine. This isn't some kind of sketchy travel mod so there's no reason to worry about it.

    The manual is incorrect and Fox will attest to it (depending on which tech you happen to get).

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by mld2t
    You can go from 80 to 100 or 100 to 80 with the spacer. At 100 you don't have the spacer installed, at 80 you do. I've been running it for months now and it's been fine. This isn't some kind of sketchy travel mod so there's no reason to worry about it.

    The manual is incorrect and Fox will attest to it (depending on which tech you happen to get).
    I have an F29 that I ordered as 80 and converted to 100 myself. I agree with everything you said here and will take it one step further: CALL FOX TECH SUPPORT. The wait is reasonable and the help is outstanding. There was absolute agreement that the F29 CAN go 80 to 100 or 100 to 80 with no problems and the manual is in error. They will either talk you through the conversion over the phone or point you to the odd, out of the way place in another fork's online manual that will get you the info you need to do it yourself. Great support for an excellent fork...

  39. #39
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    Thanks guys!! I'll do the conversion tonight.
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  40. #40
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    I did this on the F29 last week. There is NO pushing out of any pin, or anything the like. You pull the rod assembly out, slide the springs down from the fixed plastic disk, and snap in the 20mm spacer. I went from 100 to 80mm. I had to do this 2x as I was misled by that whole 'push out the pin and move the disk to the other hole' business.

    Thanks for the tip on not having to disassemble the entire fork. Next time, this will take 10mins, tops.

  41. #41
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    This ten minute travel change - do you lose oil - have to add new oil to the fork to accomplish the travel increase or decrease (whichever you are going for)?

  42. #42
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    Okay... I semi-successfully made the conversion from 80 to 100mm. Yes, the spacer is all that needed to be changed. Howver, it's a bit more involved and messy than this post seems to suggest.

    First, when you remove the nut and seal off of the bottom of the leg, oil (Fox Suspension Fluid) will come out. Be prepared to catch it. Next, when you push the air shaft assembly out of the top of the fork, you will loose more oil (Fox Float Fluid). If you are like me you will find that the green Float oil will run down the leg and drip into the container that had caught the yellow Suspension oil, thus contaminating it.

    So the fork is back together, aired up, and poised to give 100mm of travel. However, I need to hit the shop tomorrow and buy more oil before the fork can be ridden.

    10 minutes might be an accurate guess for the 2nd or 3rd time that you do the procedure. Expect it to take longer the first time.
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  43. #43
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    I have had success with this conversion as well, but I was able to go to 120mm by combining the techniques listed in this thread.

    If you remove the plastic spacer and also move the pin-set stop back to the other hole in the stem the shock stretches out to 120mm.

    I don't know if this is recommended, but I did it anyway. My Fisher Rig is TALL now, lol!

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moobsy
    If you remove the plastic spacer and also move the pin-set stop back to the other hole in the stem the shock stretches out to 120mm.

    I don't know if this is recommended, but I did it anyway. My Fisher Rig is TALL now, lol!
    The 120mm F29 is a little heavier due to a beefed up crown on the 120mm version because of the increased torque of the longer legs. If you don't weigh well over 200lbs, your crowns shouldn't have any problems with the increases torque.

  45. #45
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    has anyone tried this with the '09 80mm fork? Same process and results?

  46. #46
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    i assume this changes a to C measurments?

  47. #47
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    Success!

    I had never even owned a suspension fork until this afternoon. Was messy but this thread helped me out a great deal. I also found printing off the tech info from the fox site about changing the travel to be very beneficial.

    I am just wondering about the Fox Suspension Fluid... I caught all that came out, but when I came to put it back in it amounted to about 20ccs of fluid compared to the recommended 30ccs. I assume that a lot of the fluid would have been in the actual leg, it is quite viscous and didn't flow very well. Does anyone think this will be a problem and if so should I top up the fluid?

  48. #48
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    I'm curious if anyone changed the seals during the conversion process? My LBS tech told me that they will probably weep if I don't replace them, but the fork has about 12 hours on it so I can't see it being a problem. Any experiences here?

    Also I picked up suspension fluid and float fluid just incase I need it, is either necessary or if I collect the existing fluids carefully can I gat by with out it?

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by rensho
    I did this on the F29 last week. There is NO pushing out of any pin, or anything the like. You pull the rod assembly out, slide the springs down from the fixed plastic disk, and snap in the 20mm spacer. I went from 100 to 80mm. I had to do this 2x as I was misled by that whole 'push out the pin and move the disk to the other hole' business.

    Thanks for the tip on not having to disassemble the entire fork. Next time, this will take 10mins, tops.
    Nice memory

  50. #50
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    my experience

    i did this about 2 months ago on a new shox. I did not change my seals, and have had no problems. I captured all the fluid I could (lost at least a few drops) and put it back when i was done, I did not add anything extra and like I said, I have had no problems with the shox.

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