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  1. #1
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    Upgrade 2013 Trek Marlin Fork?

    Hey All,
    I'm considering upgrading the 2013 Trek Marlin Fork (SR Suntour XCM with G2) to a RockShox Recon Silver TK Air (Non-G2)....

    What do you think? Good idea? Bad idea?

    - Is the Recon *significantly* better than the Suntour? So much better that its worth losing the G2 geometry?

    Thanks!!
    Shyam

  2. #2
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    Re: Upgrade 2013 Trek Marlin Fork?

    Try the Suntour upgrade program... You can get a Raidon (air fork, rebound damping, loxkoit) for $175...or get the Recon Gold for $238 and shave off a couple of pounds.

  3. #3
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    Shave the weight and add a light front wheel and tire with the Epicon 15mm which is also an upgrade option. Drop all that weight and get a decent fork. You will be set. No more upgrade needs.

  4. #4
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    Thanks guys - so it sounding like to me that the Recon Silver isn't *significantly* better than the Suntour to make it worth the upgrade...

  5. #5
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    I'm no expert on forks but I have been looking to upgrade as well. The Recon "silver" is an upgrade but not by much. The Recon Gold is about a pound lighter than your Suntour Fork, is a lot stiffer, and can be found for $238.00 at Random Bike Parts which is about $200.00 off retail. The Suntour upgrade program sounds promising but the available choices are the Raidon for $175 that is still a heavy fork and the Epicon for $250 which is nice but only available in 15mm through axle so you would need a different front wheel too. As far as the G2 Geometry goes, you would have to ask other Trek owners who have made the swap to get their opinions. From what I have read the difference is minimal and most don't even notice.

  6. #6
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    Thanks!! Sounds like maybe I should wait and try to move to the Epicon + lighter/better wheels. I've been looking at the Stan's Flow EX 29'er wheel set....are there any better budget wheels I should be looking at?

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    When I was considering the upgrade, I found some Black Flag Comp wheels at Performance bike for $389.00 a set. They come with adapters so you can use the front for 9qr, 15mm, or 20mm. Here's a link Sun Ringlé Black Flag Comp 29" Wheelset - Mountain Bike Wheels / Wheelsets

  8. #8
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    Also look into the repair/rebuild aspect of the Suntour Forks. Its' my understanding that you have to send them in for repair so if you have a problem, you'll be without a ride until you get the fork back. Rockshox are easily repaired/rebuilt at most bike shops or by you?

  9. #9
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    Re: Upgrade 2013 Trek Marlin Fork?

    Fyi, I dropped 2.2 lbs going from my suntour XCT v3 100mm to the Recon Gold.

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    Then I need to recalculate my numbers???

  11. #11
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    Hmm great point on the rebuild topic....I'd rather do it myself/learn how to do it myself than send it in....hmm

  12. #12
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    Pick up a Manitou fork you won't regret it. The offset difference is minimal with their forks as well. 48mm IIRC compared to 52mm for the G2 forks.

    I have the same frame (Mamba) and LOVE my Tower Pro and the ride/handling characteristics but I also went to a 120mm travel. Good luck!

    I waited to buy Black Flag wheels on sale for $280 and as mentioned the front hub is adaptable 9QR, 15/20mm axle. My fork I bought on clearance for $339 but you can get the Minute for under $300 regularly.


  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by _Alberto_ View Post
    Pick up a Manitou fork you won't regret it. The offset difference is minimal with their forks as well. 48mm IIRC compared to 52mm for the G2 forks.

    I have the same frame (Mamba) and LOVE my Tower Pro and the ride/handling characteristics but I also went to a 120mm travel. Good luck!

    I waited to buy Black Flag wheels on sale for $280 and as mentioned the front hub is adaptable 9QR, 15/20mm axle. My fork I bought on clearance for $339 but you can get the Minute for under $300 regularly.

    I bought the 120mm tower pro for my Cobia (again same frame) and I love it plus it was ~210g lighter than the stock recon silver and 15QR.

  14. #14
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    Got a second bike on the same SR Suntour fork and have been looking to upgrade, currently considering the X fusion Slide, it's about 1820gr according to specs and have great reviews
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  15. #15
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    You guys are awesome - thanks for the great info!

    I'm now looking at the black flag wheels also - sounds like they are 28 spoke versus 32 or 36, any concern about sturdy-ness on trails? I assume 28 spoke is less sturdy than a 32 spoke...am i wrong here?

    Also, I like the Manitou forks as I've read great things about them...but its mostly my OCD holding me back....to me they look like they are mounted backwards whenever I see one!

    I'm looking into the suntour upgrade program now, I emailed nick and he said that they are easily serviced at home.

  16. #16
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    Im 210-215lbs geared up, and do typical XC drops, small jumps, bomb thru rooty, rocky sections as fast as can be and have yet to even slightly make a wheel out of true. Setting up tubeless was easy, but that's another thread.

    Don't let the forks looks sway you away from them, for this price point, and some, they cant be beat.

  17. #17
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    I love my recon gold. its the best bang for the buck i found when i upgraded the fork on my specialized.

  18. #18
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    Re: Upgrade 2013 Trek Marlin Fork?

    Quote Originally Posted by andrwplsn View Post
    I love my recon gold. its the best bang for the buck i found when i upgraded the fork on my specialized.
    Agreed. I got one for my Talon and i do not regret it. $249 to shave off 2.2 lbs and get a plush ride? Yes please.

  19. #19
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    Those of you running the Black Flag comp - do you think this would be a worthwhile upgrade over the trek marlin stock wheels? (bontrager at-650)

    Still looking at forks...

    Thanks!
    Shyam

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by _Alberto_ View Post
    Im 210-215lbs geared up, and do typical XC drops, small jumps, bomb thru rooty, rocky sections as fast as can be and have yet to even slightly make a wheel out of true. Setting up tubeless was easy, but that's another thread.

    Don't let the forks looks sway you away from them, for this price point, and some, they cant be beat.
    Looks like I have a similar build and riding style to you. What are you running for spring and pressure? I've been eyeing a few options but keep coming back to the Tower Pro. Looks like you got a screaming deal at 330, currently looking at pulling the trigger on one for ~400.

    Also did the handling/climbing suffer at all going to the 120? I know alot of people shun this due to the change in force on the frame, but damn it is tempting. I'm on a different frame, but curious how big of a difference this made for you. Did you shorten the Steerer or increase sag % to componsate?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by shyamrox View Post
    You guys are awesome - thanks for the great info!

    I'm now looking at the black flag wheels also - sounds like they are 28 spoke versus 32 or 36, any concern about sturdy-ness on trails? I assume 28 spoke is less sturdy than a 32 spoke...am i wrong here?

    Also, I like the Manitou forks as I've read great things about them...but its mostly my OCD holding me back....to me they look like they are mounted backwards whenever I see one!

    I'm looking into the suntour upgrade program now, I emailed nick and he said that they are easily serviced at home.
    Here's info from another post on this forum that says the forks are only serviceable by Suntour;

    Suntour's policy is that only trained mechanics are permitted to perform maintenance on their fork, same as Fox and many others.
    The Suntour's fork is cartridge based. Their answer: "Our forks do not have any open oil chambers so there is no oil to install in the fork. We do use sealed cartridges and they can be serviced but only here at SR Suntour North American HQ."

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by dvdslw View Post
    The Suntour's fork is cartridge based. Their answer: "Our forks do not have any open oil chambers so there is no oil to install in the fork. We do use sealed cartridges and they can be serviced but only here at SR Suntour North American HQ."
    This is not bad. I have a White Bros fork with the same cartridge construction. It is sealed and it just doesn't need maintenance. You can't change oil weight or valving but you can just ride it every day.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by antigravity19 View Post
    Looks like I have a similar build and riding style to you. What are you running for spring and pressure? I've been eyeing a few options but keep coming back to the Tower Pro. Looks like you got a screaming deal at 330, currently looking at pulling the trigger on one for ~400.

    Also did the handling/climbing suffer at all going to the 120? I know alot of people shun this due to the change in force on the frame, but damn it is tempting. I'm on a different frame, but curious how big of a difference this made for you. Did you shorten the Steerer or increase sag % to componsate?
    Xfirm spring shimmed (ghetto xx-firm) 100psi. Compression is run around 3 clicks in from soft and at 4 it takes a lot to bottom out 120mm with my weight.

    Steered tube maybe 5mm shorter than stock with the stem under more spacers, stem flipped negative for a lower front end. HTA is around 68.5 its perfect for what I ride which is lots of up, reward is the down.

    Very slight wandering when climbing over stock but nothing that a little more attention climbing and two rides didn't make go away. Better shot of the front end with a 90mm -4 degree stem. If you want more info or pics PM me Id be glad to help.



  24. #24
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    My understanding was that "sealed cartridges" can only be serviced by factory trained technicians. However the ''sealed cartridges" can be replaced by the user.
    Duct tape iz like teh Force. It has a Lite side and a Dark side and it holdz the Universe together.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by dvdslw View Post
    Here's info from another post on this forum that says the forks are only serviceable by Suntour;

    Suntour's policy is that only trained mechanics are permitted to perform maintenance on their fork, same as Fox and many others.
    The Suntour's fork is cartridge based. Their answer: "Our forks do not have any open oil chambers so there is no oil to install in the fork. We do use sealed cartridges and they can be serviced but only here at SR Suntour North American HQ."
    Wow, that's really good to know!! Thanks!

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by GelatiCruiser View Post
    Fyi, I dropped 2.2 lbs going from my suntour XCT v3 100mm to the Recon Gold.
    I received my Recon Gold Yesterday from Random Bike Parts and weighed both while they were off, the Recon weighed in at 4.0lbs uncut and the XCR that came off the bike weighed 5.4lbs. Took about 20 minutes to install and I love it. I was second guessing my decision but after taking a little spin today I couldn't be happier. The weight loss is good but the decrease in flex is worth every penny. I don't know how many they have left but anyone looking for an inexpensive but decent fork should jump on one of these!

  27. #27
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    Based on everyone's input, I'm thinking about going with the Manitou Tower Expert....is this a good choice? Also, do you know if the manitou forks are easily upgradable to have remote lockout?

    Manitou Tower Expert 29er 80mm/100mm/120mm Fork | Manitou | Brand | www.PricePoint.com

    Looks like price point has it for $359.98 .....should I be able to get this for cheaper if I wait for a deal?

    Thanks!!!!
    Shyam

  28. #28
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    Upgrade 2013 Trek Marlin Fork?

    I see nobody has mentioned the Rockshox Reba RL yet. Pricepoint has it for only about $50 more. I paid $425 for mine shipped. It's only 100mm travel, but with the dual air set up properly it's a great fork. Race worthy too. Not to mention its lighter at a little over three and a half pounds, and ridiculously easy to service/upgrade/find parts for at LBS down the road.


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  29. #29
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    I just installed the Manitou Tower Pro on my 2010 Trek Marlin. I had considered getting the Epicon through the upgrade program but was able to pick up the Tower Pro for just a little more. I like the tune-ability of the Manitou. I upgraded to the XFirm spring and it's made a world of difference in my Marlin.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by clayyea View Post
    I just installed the Manitou Tower Pro on my 2010 Trek Marlin. I had considered getting the Epicon through the upgrade program but was able to pick up the Tower Pro for just a little more. I like the tune-ability of the Manitou. I upgraded to the XFirm spring and it's made a world of difference in my Marlin.
    Where'd you find the Xfirm? I just pulled the trigger(ahhh!!) on a Tower Pro. At 215, I'm guessing I'm going to need it.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by shyamrox View Post
    Based on everyone's input, I'm thinking about going with the Manitou Tower Expert....is this a good choice? Also, do you know if the manitou forks are easily upgradable to have remote lockout?

    Manitou Tower Expert 29er 80mm/100mm/120mm Fork | Manitou | Brand | www.PricePoint.com

    Looks like price point has it for $359.98 .....should I be able to get this for cheaper if I wait for a deal?

    Thanks!!!!
    Shyam
    shyamrox, Pricepoint is running a special right now. I'd take a look at it and the pro. Special reduces the differential between the two. Just pulled the trigger on the pro myself.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by antigravity19 View Post
    Where'd you find the Xfirm? I just pulled the trigger(ahhh!!) on a Tower Pro. At 215, I'm guessing I'm going to need it.
    Had my LBS order it for me. Part number is 141-26743-K003. It was $15.

  33. #33
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    did you have to end up getting a new wheel set?
    Quote Originally Posted by clayyea View Post
    I just installed the Manitou Tower Pro on my 2010 Trek Marlin. I had considered getting the Epicon through the upgrade program but was able to pick up the Tower Pro for just a little more. I like the tune-ability of the Manitou. I upgraded to the XFirm spring and it's made a world of difference in my Marlin.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by speedintc View Post
    did you have to end up getting a new wheel set?
    No, the tower pro is available in 9mm QR.

  35. #35
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    ok thanks. im in the same boat. i bought the trek wahoo and started upgrading this thing and cant stop. i didnt really wanna buy a new wheel set at the moment but it definitly needs a new fork. i upgrader my brakes to hayes stroker trails and this fork flexes so bad and i have a bigger front rotor coming in for it. i can only imagin what it would be like then.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by clayyea View Post
    Had my LBS order it for me. Part number is 141-26743-K003. It was $15.
    Did you get the 100mm travel? Heard that was hard to find right now. Still haven't found a LBS that can order it for me. Will have to call up Manitou, my fork shows up Thursday!

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by antigravity19 View Post
    Did you get the 100mm travel? Heard that was hard to find right now. Still haven't found a LBS that can order it for me. Will have to call up Manitou, my fork shows up Thursday!
    Yes, it's for the 100mm fork. That's the XFirm. The XXFirm is the one hard to find and technically doesn't exist for the 100mm.

  38. #38
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    Any updates from you guys upgrading to Mantiou's?

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    Quote Originally Posted by clayyea View Post
    I just installed the Manitou Tower Pro on my 2010 Trek Marlin. I had considered getting the Epicon through the upgrade program but was able to pick up the Tower Pro for just a little more. I like the tune-ability of the Manitou. I upgraded to the XFirm spring and it's made a world of difference in my Marlin.
    These are the two forks in the running for me. The Tower and the Epica. I haven't gotten a hold of my LBS to see what he can do, but the owner is a cool dude and I bet he can work something out.

    The Epic is supposed to be really easy to work on which is a plus. I can do USD forks on a motorcycle, so I'm not planning on having the bike shop do much with it.

  40. #40
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    How is the new fork coming?

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  41. #41
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    I just got the Manitou Tower Expert in my hand. Hopefully I'll have it installed and riding tomorrow night but if not, definitely by this weekend.

  42. #42
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    Any updates from you guys upgrading to Mantiou's?
    I just installed a Manitou Tower Pro on my Felt 29er last week. Put about 14 miles on it last weekend on the trails. It feels like a totally new bike. The Tower is super user friendly, adjustments are straight forward for rebound and dampening. The ride is great and I like the lockout feature for those rare miles I do on pavement. It doesn't totally lock out like many others do, it's more like about 90% so it leaves just a little travel for those occasional little bumps you might encounter on the hard surface. It really responsive and the travel is very smooth. My Suntour fork that I took off the bike felt like a boat anchor compared to the Tower Pro. I'm really pleased with it.

  43. #43
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    Just ordered Recon Gold for my 13 Marlin, cant wait!!! tolerated the suntour for too long.....Next BB7's
    If you hear banjo music, pedal harder...

  44. #44
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    Nice, did you get a g2 or standard? I keep debating if i want to get bb7's or upgrade to deore hydros. If you are going bb7 I highly recommend the avid speed dials. I put them on and even with the crappy tektro's it feels nicer

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    g2, still waiting for them to get here ugh..i debated the doere aswell, just seems like a lot of money I could use for the next upgrade... thanks for the speed dial tip.
    If you hear banjo music, pedal harder...

  46. #46
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    Nice. Its not a whole lot more. I've seen them for 65ish a set. The bb7's come with a rotors but not the levers. I'm assuming you could use your current rotors or add them into the cost. But typically the bb7's with the speed dials is going to be around 100-120 bucks.

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    Great! more to think about...I am wanting to go with the 180mm front rotor which ever I decide
    If you hear banjo music, pedal harder...

  48. #48
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    same here. I just got my bike back from the shop doing the 1x10 conversion. I took off 1.8 lbs doing that. Another 200 some odd grams getting new stem and bars for a total of 2.3 lb weight loss on my 2012 Marlin.

  49. #49
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    Nice, post a pic of the conversion if you get a chance. I was thinking about going with a double crank and bash guard.
    If you hear banjo music, pedal harder...

  50. #50
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    Upgrade 2013 Trek Marlin Fork?-imag2364.jpg

    Upgrade 2013 Trek Marlin Fork?-imag2366.jpg

    Those are the non-scenic quick basement pics. Hopefully the weather will comply and I get to ride it this weekend.

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