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  1. #1
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    Hardtail with 120mm fork

    What do you guys suggest? I'm looking for an all mountain setup with the ability to dive into technical sections and ride the tough lines.

    Anyone have experience with a 120mm fork on a hard tail or specifically the SIR 9? If so, what do you suggest?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    What's "social pace?"
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    Good idea. You should make one of them thangs. I have a 120mm reba and some Flows on mine.

  3. #3
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    Re: Hardtail with 120mm fork

    Not many hardtails are built for 120mm, but I am currently building one. I think 120mm works just good on a carbon 29er, but will let you know my findings in about a week's time when i am finished.

    It's sporting xx1, 2014 fox float, should weigh in at about 20lbs.

  4. #4
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    The new Nimble 9 checks all of your boxes. Pretty aggressive geometry, short chainstays, handles a 120mm without issue. Being steel its a little heavier than some of the other options out there but is an awesome ride.


  5. #5
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    I have a 120mm built up Mamba. It's very quick, it keeps up with the FS bikes on everything but the roughest rock gardens. I love the geometry its versatile.

  6. #6
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    Re: Hardtail with 120mm fork

    Just looked at the SIR 9s geometry. It would result in about a 69.5 head tube angle and rise the bb a bit. If I were you I would invest in a adjustable headset so you can bring it back up to 71.5 ish.

    Edit: for AM you might prefer the slacker angles, although I still like steeper angles for most types of riding this side of DH.

  7. #7
    R.I.P. DogFriend
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    Niner ROS

    Diamondback Mason

    Banshee Paradox

    Transition TransAM

    Canfield Ninble 9

    Canfield Yelli Screamy

    Kona Honzo

    Trek Stache

    Probably missed some, but these are the ones that came to mind.

    Look for Airborne to come out with something in this category very soon.

    I am a fan of this genre of 29er hardtails. I like the slacker head angles with a fork that has more offset, like the G2 forks, or the Manitous. Not all hardtails with 120 mm forks are designed with the same exact intent, with some being decidedly burlier than others.

  8. #8
    Gears... I hate gears
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    A couple more I could think of.

    Chromag Surface

    Chromag Rootdown

    Kona Taro (aluminum brother to the famed Honzo)

    good luck with your search and be sure o let us know which one you pick. My next bike will certainly be one of these types of bikes.

  9. #9
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    I run the sir9 with a 120 f29 fox fork. It has been great for me. I haven't tried any other fork on it so I can't comment on which one to buy, but I would probably stick with a 32mm xc fork because the frame isn't the stiffest and the 34mm forks would probably be overkill. That said, I would love to try one out if someone gave me one.

    I would not say the sir9 is an am bike, either. It just has a little too much "life" to it, which is a nice way of saying good flex, which makes it comfortable. I think it is better with a 120mm fork than the air9 I had because that one was so stiff it pinged around while the fork still had more to give. I guess those with stiff am hardtails will chime in, but I don't know how they get around the imbalance without sacrificing the rear rim on a regular basis.

    Quote Originally Posted by legsosteel View Post
    What do you guys suggest? I'm looking for an all mountain setup with the ability to dive into technical sections and ride the tough lines.

    Anyone have experience with a 120mm fork on a hard tail or specifically the SIR 9? If so, what do you suggest?

    Thanks!

  10. #10
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    Thanks for all the replies. To clear up some confusion I should have stated that I am trying to find the right fork for the SIR9. I have it setup full rigid right now and 3 hours on the trails beats me up pretty good.

    It sounds like 120mm fork is going to be a bad ass setup. I do have an adjustable headset so I can add some spacers to slack out the fork.

    I've had my eye on the 2013 RockShox Reba an will probably go this route. I've also looked at the fox forks a bit and might pull the trigger on the suggested fox 34 120mm... this could be awesome but maybe too beefy?

    I guess I am most worried about having a stiff setup that I won't bottom out. Would the 120mm be overkill?

    Thanks!

  11. #11
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    Can my giant xtc 29er handle 120mm shocks? Also, how tough is carbon anyways? I know my xtc is composite... which is carbon mixed with something else no?

  12. #12
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    Re: Hardtail with 120mm fork

    Quote Originally Posted by legsosteel View Post
    Thanks for all the replies. To clear up some confusion I should have stated that I am trying to find the right fork for the SIR9. I have it setup full rigid right now and 3 hours on the trails beats me up pretty good.

    It sounds like 120mm fork is going to be a bad ass setup. I do have an adjustable headset so I can add some spacers to slack out the fork.

    I've had my eye on the 2013 RockShox Reba an will probably go this route. I've also looked at the fox forks a bit and might pull the trigger on the suggested fox 34 120mm... this could be awesome but maybe too beefy?

    I guess I am most worried about having a stiff setup that I won't bottom out. Would the 120mm be overkill?

    Thanks!
    Personally I think 120mm is the perfect all round fork. Reba is a great fork at the price, but I love the plushness of my 2014 32 120mm float and I don't look back at all.

  13. #13
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    OP, LOADS and loads of frames specifically designed for this exact purpose and many are mentioned here, definitely a fun alternative once you're willing to work a bit harder to absorb the trail chatter with your legs (all HTs are like that though) but the fun you can have is amazing, really miss my Paradox Build up some nice wheels with wide rims and some big volume tyres and this will help a lot - Blunt35s laced to hubs of your choice, On-One Chunky Monkey tyres

    OT but......Holy $hit is Devils green, never seen it anything but brown and dry. Miss that place, some of the sweetest ST and scenery and variety I've experienced. BTW, Nimble looks awesome, bet it kicks a$$ out there.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Wankel View Post
    The new Nimble 9 checks all of your boxes. Pretty aggressive geometry, short chainstays, handles a 120mm without issue. Being steel its a little heavier than some of the other options out there but is an awesome ride.

    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
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  14. #14
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    I recommended the 32mm, IDK who recommended the 34. I also have a works angleset and about a 68 head angle on paper. I like that in the loose rocks.

    Do you have a new sir9 with tapered headtube, or older one? I think there are less options for a straight 1 1/8" steerer, like no fox 34 if I read their website right.

    Quote Originally Posted by legsosteel View Post
    Thanks for all the replies. To clear up some confusion I should have stated that I am trying to find the right fork for the SIR9. I have it setup full rigid right now and 3 hours on the trails beats me up pretty good.

    It sounds like 120mm fork is going to be a bad ass setup. I do have an adjustable headset so I can add some spacers to slack out the fork.

    I've had my eye on the 2013 RockShox Reba an will probably go this route. I've also looked at the fox forks a bit and might pull the trigger on the suggested fox 34 120mm... this could be awesome but maybe too beefy?

    I guess I am most worried about having a stiff setup that I won't bottom out. Would the 120mm be overkill?

    Thanks!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    OT but......Holy $hit is Devils green, never seen it anything but brown and dry. Miss that place, some of the sweetest ST and scenery and variety I've experienced. BTW, Nimble looks awesome, bet it kicks a$$ out there.
    Its been a cooler summer so far this year and have gotten quite a bit more rain than normal lately so things are still pretty green...Pretty unusual though, normally things are burned and crispy by now.

    To the OP: On the topic of forks, don't overlook the White Bros Loop either. I'm finding mine to be very stiff, but really plush especially when it's damper is wide open. It also has a really nice platform when its locked down, but it will still open up easily on a bigger hit or if trail turns downhill in a hurry. The dampers magnetic valve really works well too, I like to climb with it 1 from fully locked and if I forget to open it up for a downhill it still stays plenty active...once the magnet opens up it's not trying to force itself back closed. I have a RS RCT3 equipped fork on my trail bike and difference is night and day, I notice immediately if I forget to unlock it on the downhill techy stuff, with the Loop not so much. They are a bit heavier than some of the forks in the same class but IMHO make up for the weight penalty in stiffness and damper performance.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by legsosteel View Post
    I guess I am most worried about having a stiff setup that I won't bottom out. Would the 120mm be overkill?
    If you don't bottom out your fork regularly, you aren't riding fast enough. But if that's what you are after, you can just increase the air pressure in your fork. What's the point of having 120mm of travel and only using, say, 100mm of it? I use all the travel I've got whether it's 100mm on my SIR9 or 140mm on my Honzo. It just takes a little more speed, a higher jump, or a bigger hit, to bottom the 140mm. But it still happens.

  17. #17
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    I set up a SIR 9 with 80, then 100, and finally 120 FOX REMOTE. Switched frames to ONE 9, and I now kinda miss the SIR 9. I was not happy riding a 100mm fork. Downieville is a place I ride my Singlespeed ONE 9, and 120 mm fork saves my body ( and probably my face ). I set up ONE 9 with saint cranks, Haven bars, WTB i23 wheelset, and XT brakes for kind of an ALL mountain style, abuse resistant, set up. The 120 fork is feeling short to me now, after I ride my Turner 5 Spot. I just make sure my SAG is set well for big rides.

  18. #18
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    The VooDoo Soukri in 120mm form is a blast.

  19. #19
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    I've got a Trek Stache 8. To refrain from stooping to fan boi status, I'll simply say I like it a lot. It's not a full-squish all mountain huck-fest, but it's built like a tank and the few times I've eaten sh!t on it, it's been due to my lack of skill rather than a deficiency in the bike.

    Also, add a dropper post to whatever you get. BIG change in the fun factor!

  20. #20
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    My SIR has a rigid steel fork as well. I'm running 2.4 Racing Ralph's on wide rims at low PSI which is adequate gush for most of the time (except bombing down rough and rocky descents). I actually installed a 120mm Reba Team on there for some rough rides while my FS bike was apart and it worked fine and operated predictably.

    I also own a Reba SL 80mm that has a lot of miles on it. I recently built a new aluminum hard tail 29er with a 2014 Fox F 29 FIT CTD remote fork. It was more expensive and I was reluctant but glad I ponied up for it. The 3-way remote works well (climb/trail/descend) and I detect a slightly smoother feel overall compared to the Reba. Nuttin wrong with the Reba's and they've both been very reliable. Fox had some issues through last year which appear to be resolved.

  21. #21
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    I have a 120 mm on my Pardox. I use all of the travel regularly so 120 is not overkill for tech (AZ, NM, UT).
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  22. #22
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    Your Paradox however WAS designed for that sort of usage, the SIR9, not really.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. 68 Hundred View Post
    I have a 120 mm on my Pardox. I use all of the travel regularly so 120 is not overkill for tech (AZ, NM, UT).
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
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  23. #23
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    My Scott Scale 970 frame shipped with 100mm XCR. I have an X-fusion Slide RL2 that ended up being 10mm shorter on A2C, I am going to have it converted to 120mm soon to make up for the loss, slackin' it back where it should be, and ride a lil more plush.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Your Paradox however WAS designed for that sort of usage, the SIR9, not really.
    Hence the reason for the qualifiers.
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  25. #25
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    Been tearing it up with a 120mm Reba on my Highball Al SS.

    Slacks it out just enough. Still climbs with no issues.

    Never even thought about running it with anything less.
    I crashed hard enough on my Tallboy to break my leg,
    The carbon is way more durable than most people.

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