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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: MudKatt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    what is a good cheap fork to replace my quadra 21r

    Getting some creaking in the front end on my old Marin MTB (1996 rocky ridge) that I have had a quadra 21r on. I can't find any other source for the creaks so I think it's coming from the fork. Everything is nice and tight.

    What is a good cheap replacement to swap it out with. The bike has a 1 1/8 tube. I use it mostly for trails and road now. Are there any in the 100 or so range that are worthwhile?
    It has cantilever brakes on it.

    Or should I just avoid spending money on it and just ignore the noises. It still works. I think I even have some of the elastomers that came with the fork in the parts bin.
    I am saving for a new bike so I didn't want to dump too much into this one. I just had to order a new cassette and chain for it. Still a pretty good ride for an old bike.
    I searched online and found some replacement rubber like bushings and also springs but I assume I would be better off changing that fork out.
    Last edited by MudKatt; 03-31-2013 at 06:06 AM.

  2. #2
    dru is offline
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    You're going to have a very hard time finding anything new with canti mounts. You won't find any decent new fork for less than $300 on sale, regardless. You should look in the classifieds, and my recommendation would be an older marzocchi bomber. I've had 3, and they are super reliable and durable.

    Edit: Roxckshox has a cheapo fork called the XC 28 at Jenson for $125. It even has canti mounts. Probably a bit better than what you have now.

    Last edited by dru; 03-31-2013 at 08:03 AM.
    occasional cyclist

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Whatever you get, keep in mind that even at 80mm (which is now considered very short travel) it will likely be a lot taller than what you have now, so you geometry will be affected. I would not go with anything over 80mm travel unless there is some way to reduce the travel.

    You could just get a rigid fork. Cheap and you can likely find one that is not suspension corrected, so it will be a good height. I've got to think that an 18 year old Quad 21 is not doing a whole lot of good in the suspension department anyway.

    Another option is something something cheap and used. The Marzocchi Bomber recomendation is a good one. If you can find one from the late 90's to early 00's, many of them were 80mm. Something like an Atom Bomb, Z2 BAM, or any other coil Z2 fork would be an acceptable height and a huge improvement over what you have, assuming you can do a rebuild.

    I think that if you are saving for a new bike, then whatever you get for this is just money lost. I'd either live with the creak, get a rigid fork, or a cheap old used one.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

  4. #4
    Reputation: aedubber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    maybe spend your money on buying a new bike .

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: MudKatt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Thanks. I do have a fork that came with the bike, but even a little cushion is good on the front end on the washboard areas. I guess I am better off just living with it then although it will probably be months before I can swing a new one.

  6. #6
    In Transit
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    I second the Zokes Bomber rec. I replaced the Q21R on my 96 Fisher with a Z2 Bomber and it was an immediate improvement. When I got back into riding about 4 years ago, I finally changed the oil and set up the fork according to the Marzocchi setup manual. Talk about plush for a 10 year old fork! There's a Z3 on eBay right now for $150 BIN.

    The other option is to go rigid fork. That is probably an upgrade to an old Quadra with mushy elastomers.

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