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  1. #1
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    Advantage of Lefty?

    what's so special about the lefty forks? I mean besides turning heads. Why would one chose a lefty over a traditional fork, etc...
    SS ==> Nut up or Shut up!

  2. #2
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  3. #3
    All Lefty's, all the time Moderator
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    Chassis siffness, plushness, lack of bushing bind during braking, best stiffness to weight ratio for forks of the same class, and yes, you don't have to take the wheel off to change a flat!
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duncan1104 View Post
    Indeed.

    Great video. Thanks.

  5. #5
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    Definitely make the front end lighter when climbing (not always good I might add)

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duncan1104 View Post
    cool vid, thanks for that!

    Can I put a lefty on a trail sl4 29er? I'd assume the fork would have a 1.5 steerer? Where would I find such forks to purchase online?
    SS ==> Nut up or Shut up!

  7. #7
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    don't believe all the hype about the Lefty...
    While it is stiff, and you can change a tire easier....you have to remember the cons too.
    Proprietary c-dale nonsense....you need a special Lefty Hub, you can't just use any hub out there...Bearing migration maintenance....you'll have to learn how to work on your fork (or have your LBS reset the bearings...chances are THEY don't even know what to do).
    I sold mine and bought a used PIKE...WAY better!
    Just my $.02...
    I'm not a hater, I still have 2 C-dales. I just think the BIG "3" make better forks (RS, Marz, Fox).

  8. #8
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    A bearing reset is a 10 min affair and the instructions are right in the owners manual.
    There are non-c'dale hubs available for the lefty.

    I sincerely hope nobody downgraded their bike from a Lefty to regular fork for these reasons! LOL

  9. #9
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    It takes me less time to do a bearing reset than to check the air pressure in both my tires. The way I see it, we are buying performance machines, and as such they require maintenance and may make some compromises in terms of convenience. But I buy my bike for for how it rides when I'm on the trail, not for how easily it fits in a trunk. All high end forks require regular maintenance.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    don't believe all the hype about the Lefty...
    While it is stiff, and you can change a tire easier....you have to remember the cons too.
    Proprietary c-dale nonsense....you need a special Lefty Hub, you can't just use any hub out there...Bearing migration maintenance....you'll have to learn how to work on your fork (or have your LBS reset the bearings...chances are THEY don't even know what to do).
    I sold mine and bought a used PIKE...WAY better!
    Just my $.02...
    I'm not a hater, I still have 2 C-dales. I just think the BIG "3" make better forks (RS, Marz, Fox).
    sorry but your reasons are invalid (and dumb) to diss a Lefty

    1) sure you need a special lefty hub, if it were universal it would'nt be a Lefty (duhhhhhhhhhhh)
    2) maintenance sure you need a to find a specialist but its a special fork and needs special attention. You wouldnt bring a Ferrari to Walmart for an Oil change would you?

    Now what makes the "BIG 3" a better fork than a lefty?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by spartan23 View Post
    sorry but your reasons are invalid (and dumb) to diss a Lefty

    1) sure you need a special lefty hub, if it were universal it would'nt be a Lefty (duhhhhhhhhhhh)
    2) maintenance sure you need a to find a specialist but its a special fork and needs special attention. You wouldnt bring a Ferrari to Walmart for an Oil change would you?

    Now what makes the "BIG 3" a better fork than a lefty?
    He makes a good point about the LBS and needed a specialist... Cannondales aren't sold everywhere and not many non-C'dale dealers are going to be familiar with the set up, although a good machanic with an internet connection should be able to figure it out.

    anyways seprate question I know they are a XC designed fork but for people that ride trail with them how do they hold up? how is the flex? deflection? strength? I've always been skeptical of them because on the technical down hils by my parents in the Black hills of sd my Fox 32 flexes and deflects like crazy, I upgraded to a 36mm, granted its a trail bike on some pretty serious trails but I know a lot of people that have just one bike and have a left on it... just wondering. Probably wont get one, they just don't have the travel for my type of riding

    and interesting video, but one that fork on the bottom must not have any air in it if it doesnt' return or it very poorly maintained and two of course a 1.5 heat tube is stiffer then a 1 and 1/8 but still very impressive about the lefty strenght

  12. #12
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    the only genuine way to convince either way is to test for yourself - the proof is in the pudding!

  13. #13
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    It's funny how some people think that all the LBS are capable of opening the latest RS or Marzocchi. As if.

    "There is a big difference between kneeling down and bending over" -FZ

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by cglasford View Post
    He makes a good point about the LBS and needed a specialist... Cannondales aren't sold everywhere and not many non-C'dale dealers are going to be familiar with the set up, although a good machanic with an internet connection should be able to figure it out.

    anyways seprate question I know they are a XC designed fork but for people that ride trail with them how do they hold up? how is the flex? deflection? strength? I've always been skeptical of them because on the technical down hils by my parents in the Black hills of sd my Fox 32 flexes and deflects like crazy, I upgraded to a 36mm, granted its a trail bike on some pretty serious trails but I know a lot of people that have just one bike and have a left on it... just wondering. Probably wont get one, they just don't have the travel for my type of riding

    and interesting video, but one that fork on the bottom must not have any air in it if it doesnt' return or it very poorly maintained and two of course a 1.5 heat tube is stiffer then a 1 and 1/8 but still very impressive about the lefty strenght

    The vid should have answered any querstions re strength. The Lefty is the strongest, lightest and plushest fork on the market. Period. Has been that way for the last 10 years or so.

    Re the vid, both forks had zero air/spring in them, so that they could be easily compressed by the presenter. What the vid depicts is not steerer tube deflection - its the fork legs and clamp flexing resulting in not only steering imprecision, but the binding of the fork stanchions in their bushings, ie massive performance loss.

    If you are looking for more than 140mm of travel, look elsewhere. But I AM ride my 120 and I love it. The small stuff lierally disappears under the Lefty and the big hits are absorbed just as well. All with zero detectabkle flex and zero binding. For frequent jumping and big drops, etc., I'd go with something else. Its kinda like taking a Ferrari through downtown NY potholed and kobble stone streets on a daily basis - it can do it . . . but there are better tools for that job.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stumpjumpy View Post
    The vid should have answered any querstions re strength. The Lefty is the strongest, lightest and plushest fork on the market. Period. Has been that way for the last 10 years or so.

    Re the vid, both forks had zero air/spring in them, so that they could be easily compressed by the presenter. What the vid depicts is not steerer tube deflection - its the fork legs and clamp flexing resulting in not only steering imprecision, but the binding of the fork stanchions in their bushings, ie massive performance loss.

    If you are looking for more than 140mm of travel, look elsewhere. But I AM ride my 120 and I love it. The small stuff lierally disappears under the Lefty and the big hits are absorbed just as well. All with zero detectabkle flex and zero binding. For frequent jumping and big drops, etc., I'd go with something else. Its kinda like taking a Ferrari through downtown NY potholed and kobble stone streets on a daily basis - it can do it . . . but there are better tools for that job.
    Thanks for the clarification I must have missed the no air part but that makes the lefty pretty impressive. I think it probably is one of the best forks for XC but again it's not for me, might look silly on a claymore! haha, cool for fork tho.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stumpjumpy View Post
    The vid should have answered any querstions re strength. The Lefty is the strongest, lightest and plushest fork on the market. Period. Has been that way for the last 10 years or so.
    .

    No way. The strength to weight ratio of Lefty's is indeed impressive.

    But, many traditional dual crown forks are both stiffer and more plush. Boxxer, Fox 40, 888, etc. No Debate. I think any 35 or 36 mm stanchioned fork with a 20mm axle is noticeably stiffer as well. Obviously, all of these forks are going to weigh more than a Lefty however.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by altazo View Post
    No way. The strength to weight ratio of Lefty's is indeed impressive.

    But, many traditional dual crown forks are both stiffer and more plush. Boxxer, Fox 40, 888, etc. No Debate. I think any 35 or 36 mm stanchioned fork with a 20mm axle is noticeably stiffer as well. Obviously, all of these forks are going to weigh more than a Lefty however.
    You're right. I mispoke (my statement was too absolute and unqualified).

    Among sub 140mm forks (in other words - forks in the same class as the Lefty), I think my statement is generally true. Conventional forks w/ big axles are better than the small axle variety and perhaps similar to a Lefty in rigidity, but there is a weight penalty paid. You will not find a fork of comparable weight that is even in the same time zone as a Lefty in terms of stiffness.

    Dual crown forks are generally DH long travel forks and weigh a ton and are not in the same class as Lefty.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cormac View Post
    what's so special about the lefty forks? I mean besides turning heads. Why would one chose a lefty over a traditional fork, etc...
    I have re worked your question:

    What is so special about dual crown forks? I mean they are everywhere, they are heavier (for like travel 110 vs 110), have more flex and do not work as well.

    Why would anyone choose a traditional fork over a lefty?

    I do not know.
    Forks are for eating, Lefty's are for racing,

  19. #19
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    How much should a Lefty conversion cost on a trail SL 2? I havent figure which fork to go with but I just want to ask what kind of price range I might be looking at.

  20. #20
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    Check Ebay. The prices vary alot depending on what model and how much travel. I just picked up a DLR2 100mm travel fork for $200, but it's for an XC bike. If you want 140mm travel, carbon,etc, you'll pay a bunch more. Dont forget about the price of a new front wheel as well.

  21. #21
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    Last week, during a long ride on my first gen scalpel with carbon lefty, I tried my friends newer (2 year old) carbon hardtail with a higher-end fox fork. Compared to the Lefty, it just seemed like a toy...

  22. #22
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    diss

    Quote Originally Posted by spartan23 View Post
    sorry but your reasons are invalid (and dumb) to diss a Lefty

    1) sure you need a special lefty hub, if it were universal it would'nt be a Lefty (duhhhhhhhhhhh)
    2) maintenance sure you need a to find a specialist but its a special fork and needs special attention. You wouldnt bring a Ferrari to Walmart for an Oil change would you?

    Now what makes the "BIG 3" a better fork than a lefty?

    don't get all upset because someone bags on your prized Lefty.
    only recently have other wheel companies offered Lefty specific wheels and hubs (e.g. Mavic).
    For YEARS it was C-dale or Woodman...NOTHING else.

    I'm not an xc guy, the Lefty I had was 140mm and compared to my PIKE it sucked.
    The PIKE is way plusher, better on all types of hits, and only requires an overhaul once a season.
    It's a workhorse that never dissapoints.

    not much heavier either (454 air)

    Your fooling yourself if you think your local C-dale dealer is a Lefty specialist.

  23. #23
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    hits

    Quote Originally Posted by Stumpjumpy View Post
    The vid should have answered any querstions re strength. The Lefty is the strongest, lightest and plushest fork on the market. Period. Has been that way for the last 10 years or so.

    Re the vid, both forks had zero air/spring in them, so that they could be easily compressed by the presenter. What the vid depicts is not steerer tube deflection - its the fork legs and clamp flexing resulting in not only steering imprecision, but the binding of the fork stanchions in their bushings, ie massive performance loss.

    If you are looking for more than 140mm of travel, look elsewhere. But I AM ride my 120 and I love it. The small stuff lierally disappears under the Lefty and the big hits are absorbed just as well. All with zero detectabkle flex and zero binding. For frequent jumping and big drops, etc., I'd go with something else. Its kinda like taking a Ferrari through downtown NY potholed and kobble stone streets on a daily basis - it can do it . . . but there are better tools for that job.
    just wondering...what kind of "Big Hits" does your Lefty 120 absorb?
    and, if the Lefty is so great, why wouldn't C-dale up the travel to 150mm in order to compete with the DOZENS of competitors offerings?

    again with the Ferrari? Have you ever ridden anything other than a C-dale with a lefty?

  24. #24
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    The two areas where my lefty excels over my other bike (which has a recon) are giving the bike a lighter feel and giving the bike more precise steering. The actual suspension side to the fork is different and not necessarily better or worse. I definitely prefer it for the cross country riding I mainly do.

  25. #25
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    one other thing i forgot to mention...
    I like the fact that I can send my PIKE, 888...etc out to different companies for rebuilds and custom tuning (If you really want to dial in the fork to your weight and riding style).
    Companies like PUSH offer great performance, service, and value. AND I don't have to go through my LBS to send it out.
    C-dale makes everything SO difficult in terms of service and propietory components.

  26. #26
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    "There is a big difference between kneeling down and bending over" -FZ

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    I'm building up my first Lefty build, so I'll be sure to report back my thoughts

  28. #28
    All Lefty's, all the time Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    one other thing i forgot to mention...
    I like the fact that I can send my PIKE, 888...etc out to different companies for rebuilds and custom tuning (If you really want to dial in the fork to your weight and riding style).
    Companies like PUSH offer great performance, service, and value. AND I don't have to go through my LBS to send it out.
    C-dale makes everything SO difficult in terms of service and propietory components.
    You just haven't looked very hard, there are a number of other independent places that service them, all via mail order, none requiring any input from an authorized dealer.

    Myself, Two6Labs, The Shockspital, 88+, Thumbprint Tuning, all offer Lefty and Headshock tuning, and I'm sure there's more.....
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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    I just got a 2012 Trail SL 2 last month so I have been doing some research of what upgrades I want to do down the road. My first 2 major upgrades I would like to do is the fork and rims, but after a while I would to continue to beat the crap out of the bike until next year or so. So for a Lefty conversion I would need the fork, a new rim for the lefty hub, but what about the headset? can my disk brakes transfer over? Or would it make more sense to get a conventional fork upgrade like say a Fox Float or something from RockShox? From what I hear a Lefty conversion can be very costly.

  30. #30
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    I wonder what percentage of the people here getting all defensive about their Leftys have a Lefty that is actually functioning correctly? My guess would be about 50%.

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    Quote Originally Posted by altazo View Post
    I wonder what percentage of the people here getting all defensive about their Leftys have a Lefty that is actually functioning correctly? My guess would be about 50%.
    The same could be said about the people who are slating the lefty, how many of them have got/owned a lefty.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by tonymoto View Post
    The same could be said about the people who are slating the lefty, how many of them have got/owned a lefty.
    You're probably correct. For the record I do have a fair amount of experience with Lefty's. Like I said, their weights are impressive and when functioning correctly they do feel pretty good. For XC racing they are a great choice.

    What does "slating" mean in this context?

    Slating | Define Slating at Dictionary.com

  33. #33
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    I like the way my Lefty rides and feels, but it seems that although many say the bearing reset is fast and easy there are threads devoted to people who have issues with it.

    I'm still miffed that the compression damping and lockout on mine died after about 14 months and that it took 5 weeks to get it back from Cannondale Australia and even then it wasn't serviced right.

    That would make me leery about having another one, at least down here where we don't have a Mendon.
    Less isn't MOAR

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by altazo View Post
    You're probably correct. For the record I do have a fair amount of experience with Lefty's. Like I said, their weights are impressive and when functioning correctly they do feel pretty good. For XC racing they are a great choice.

    What does "slating" mean in this context?

    Slating | Define Slating at Dictionary.com
    Slating is to view a dislike to something/someone...

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by altazo View Post
    I wonder what percentage of the people here getting all defensive about their Leftys have a Lefty that is actually functioning correctly? My guess would be about 50%.
    I've said it here before and I say it again.. I've been riding Leftys since they first came out and have owned many different models- carbon, alloy, DLR's, MAX's, Speeds, PBR's and Ultra's with absolutely NO issues whatsoever. I love them.

    The great Lefty debate is no different that PC vs. MAC or Ford vs. Chevy. You will find passionate people on both sides of the issue with what they believe to be the ONLY correct opinion of the product.

    My advice to the original poster of this topic is to get one and give it a try to make your own decision. If it sucks as bad as one or two people say it does here on this forum, then sell it and get whatever they recommend.

  36. #36
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    headset

    Quote Originally Posted by buck sh0tzz View Post
    I just got a 2012 Trail SL 2 last month so I have been doing some research of what upgrades I want to do down the road. My first 2 major upgrades I would like to do is the fork and rims, but after a while I would to continue to beat the crap out of the bike until next year or so. So for a Lefty conversion I would need the fork, a new rim for the lefty hub, but what about the headset? can my disk brakes transfer over? Or would it make more sense to get a conventional fork upgrade like say a Fox Float or something from RockShox? From what I hear a Lefty conversion can be very costly.
    need a Lefty compatible headset, hub, pretty sure you need a lefty brake adaptor.
    Don't forget the stem!
    C-dale made it a point to make the lefty steer tube 1.56" and not the industry 1.5" (unless this has changed)...slim pickings on choices.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    need a Lefty compatible headset, hub, pretty sure you need a lefty brake adaptor.
    Don't forget the stem!
    C-dale made it a point to make the lefty steer tube 1.56" and not the industry 1.5" (unless this has changed)...slim pickings on choices.
    Lefty's DO NOT need a special brake adaptor.. they use standard IS models. Also, what you consider a problem (Cannondale-specific headset size), is called System Integration and is what the entire concept of Cannondale is built on.

  38. #38
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    Hello,

    I have a marvellous Rush 5 with lefty and some upgrades. I'm really happy with the bike and the fork. Everything had been write here about funtion, weight, etc, is true. In my opinion, is the best fork for XC and trail rides (what I do). But, my experience is that my lefty is much delicate compared to my Fox F100 RLC. Also, I have friends that change their leftys to comon forks because they live in a place with to much humidity, and they need to spend to much time taking care of their fork.

    We can accept that lefty is not for everyone, but is a great product.

    Regards
    Just try to be happy and smile every day.

  39. #39
    All Lefty's, all the time Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    C-dale made it a point to make the lefty steer tube 1.56" and not the industry 1.5" (unless this has changed)...slim pickings on choices.
    Nice try.

    the One point Five standard came around more than 10 years after Cannondale introduced their head tube size.

    And, FWIW, all they had to do to make their HT's 1.5 headset compatible was to increase the press fit mill depth. The stems are a different issue, but give me a break, all the proprietary garbage out there from all the other manufacturers, and all you can do is grouse about Cannondale? Let's here about Specialized and Treks proprietary rear shocks, Specialized introducing a new 142mm (like 135 and 150 weren't POSSIBLY good enough) rear end spacing, Fox having a 15mm TA while RS, WB, Marz etc use the industry standard 20mm, etc etc etc...

    Let's go on about BB30,it's now ubiquitous, oh, wait, (sorry) Cannondale created that.

    I smell hater in the air, plain and simple. Fine by me, just don't buy one.
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  40. #40
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    Does weight or strength come into play with upgrading to a Lefty? I'm 6'3 250 pounds I started out at about 262, not fat at all though, ex- college athlete/weight lifter. I am very fast/strong in spurts, I am still working on my conditioning and endurance. I got into cycling about 2 years ago so I'd say I'm not a beginner rider but also far from a veteran. Are these things breakable/ Is there a weight limit per say? Sorry if this was a stupid question. And also how much maintenance is necessary over a conventional fork?

  41. #41
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    I weigh 220 and find the lefty's rigidity to be an asset. The more you weigh, the easier it is to get a regular fork to flex.

  42. #42
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    hater

    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Nice try.

    the One point Five standard came around more than 10 years after Cannondale introduced their head tube size.

    And, FWIW, all they had to do to make their HT's 1.5 headset compatible was to increase the press fit mill depth. The stems are a different issue, but give me a break, all the proprietary garbage out there from all the other manufacturers, and all you can do is grouse about Cannondale? Let's here about Specialized and Treks proprietary rear shocks, Specialized introducing a new 142mm (like 135 and 150 weren't POSSIBLY good enough) rear end spacing, Fox having a 15mm TA while RS, WB, Marz etc use the industry standard 20mm, etc etc etc...

    Let's go on about BB30,it's now ubiquitous, oh, wait, (sorry) Cannondale created that.

    I smell hater in the air, plain and simple. Fine by me, just don't buy one.
    **************
    I already stated earlier that I was not a hater...and that I own 2 c-dales right now.
    but think whatever you like...
    I refuse to drink the Kool aide when it comes to the Lefty.
    At best...it's just ok. Mine blew up twice in 3 years.

    Don't downplay stem choices...They are extremely important to a proper fit.
    My prophet came with a 110mm 0* stem and it was WAY too long. So I try to put on a normal 1.5 stem that I have....nope...buy a Thomson?...can't....any other brand?...nope.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    **************
    I already stated earlier that I was not a hater...and that I own 2 c-dales right now.
    but think whatever you like...
    I refuse to drink the Kool aide when it comes to the Lefty.
    At best...it's just ok. Mine blew up twice in 3 years.

    Don't downplay stem choices...They are extremely important to a proper fit.
    My prophet came with a 110mm 0* stem and it was WAY too long. So I try to put on a normal 1.5 stem that I have....nope...buy a Thomson?...can't....any other brand?...nope.
    Again, that's why it called System Integration.... you keep trying to turn this concept into something negative- that's exactly what Cannondale's intent is... This is no different than saying, "BB30 sucks because I can't use my Mega-Exo crankset on my BB30 frame!"

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    **************
    Mine blew up twice in 3 years.
    How exactly does one's Lefty "blow up"?

    Did you forget to diffuse it?



  45. #45
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    choices

    Quote Originally Posted by vitaccop View Post
    Again, that's why it called System Integration.... you keep trying to turn this concept into something negative- that's exactly what Cannondale's intent is... This is no different than saying, "BB30 sucks because I can't use my Mega-Exo crankset on my BB30 frame!"
    .
    yeah that's another one...BB30. I DO want to use my Mega Exo crankset!!

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    **************
    I already stated earlier that I was not a hater...


    Don't downplay stem choices...They are extremely important to a proper fit.
    My prophet came with a 110mm 0* stem and it was WAY too long. So I try to put on a normal 1.5 stem that I have....nope...buy a Thomson?...can't....any other brand?...nope.
    My apologies, I got a bit excited.

    Why go to another brand? You don't indicate a lack of the proper fitting stem from Cannondale, was that the issue?

    They make many lengths and rises, so the 110 being too long isn't really a problem. Hope also makes Cannondale stems, so there is *some* choice....
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    don't get all upset because someone bags on your prized Lefty.
    only recently have other wheel companies offered Lefty specific wheels and hubs (e.g. Mavic).
    For YEARS it was C-dale or Woodman...NOTHING else.

    I'm not an xc guy, the Lefty I had was 140mm and compared to my PIKE it sucked.
    The PIKE is way plusher, better on all types of hits, and only requires an overhaul once a season.
    It's a workhorse that never dissapoints.

    not much heavier either (454 air)

    Your fooling yourself if you think your local C-dale dealer is a Lefty specialist.
    You wanting more travel is a valid reason to diss a Lefty but your prior post was plain dumb. I can agree with you that a Lefty may not be suited for DH applications.

    If your "Ferrari" question was for me..Yes, I have ridden (and owned other forks). Im a XC rider and can state that nothing comes close to the Lefty in the 90-110 category in terms of stiffness to weight ratio- nothing !!!

    peace-

  48. #48
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    I had a 2007 Lefty Max (with Manitou SPV internals) on a Prophet 2000. I would describe my riding as "all mountain" which I think fit with the intent of the "fork" and bike. The lefty is essentially half a DH fork with integrated axle. It was a very clever design before the advent of thru axles and larger hubs and so yes it is very stiff and light.

    Unfortunately, lots of negatives in my experience. Suspension action was poor - generally harsh - maybe it was the manitou stuff of the era, but regardless the best I can say, after much effort, was that it bounced up and down. Mine completely blew up (apparently required a complete internal rebuild) about 3 months after I bought it and I lost a good chunk of the riding season thx to my LBS and Cannondale's disinterest/inablity to provide timely service. In fairness, never had a problem after that. The bit about proprietary stuff is a real issue IMO, the fact that several other manufacturers also do it now doesnt change my opinion on that one. Never again will I be stuck with bike parts where getting parts/repairs done is so difficult. Bearing migration happens and you have to fix it often if you ride alot but that is also a simple <10 min job. And sorry to say, there appeared to be a rather large number of threads on this forum regarding Lefty repairs/maintenance when I had my Prophet and paid attention to those sorts of things. So I dont think my experience was unique.

    So, to the OP question as to why buy a Lefty? I cant come up with a good functional reason to choose one over a regular, similarly priced fork unless light weight and stiffness are your top two priorities.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by LWK View Post
    I had a 2007 Lefty Max (with Manitou SPV internals) on a Prophet 2000. Suspension action was poor - generally harsh - maybe it was the manitou stuff of the era.
    Well known fact that the SPV sucked donkey nads in terms of plushness of ride. Shoulda gone to a TPC, or if you still had it, the new PBR. Way nicer feeling fork at that point....
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by LWK View Post
    I had a 2007 Lefty Max (with Manitou SPV internals) on a Prophet 2000. I would describe my riding as "all mountain" which I think fit with the intent of the "fork" and bike. The lefty is essentially half a DH fork with integrated axle. It was a very clever design before the advent of thru axles and larger hubs and so yes it is very stiff and light.

    Unfortunately, lots of negatives in my experience. Suspension action was poor - generally harsh - maybe it was the manitou stuff of the era, but regardless the best I can say, after much effort, was that it bounced up and down. Mine completely blew up (apparently required a complete internal rebuild) about 3 months after I bought it and I lost a good chunk of the riding season thx to my LBS and Cannondale's disinterest/inablity to provide timely service. In fairness, never had a problem after that. The bit about proprietary stuff is a real issue IMO, the fact that several other manufacturers also do it now doesnt change my opinion on that one. Never again will I be stuck with bike parts where getting parts/repairs done is so difficult. Bearing migration happens and you have to fix it often if you ride alot but that is also a simple <10 min job. And sorry to say, there appeared to be a rather large number of threads on this forum regarding Lefty repairs/maintenance when I had my Prophet and paid attention to those sorts of things. So I dont think my experience was unique.

    So, to the OP question as to why buy a Lefty? I cant come up with a good functional reason to choose one over a regular, similarly priced fork unless light weight and stiffness are your top two priorities.

    see...LWK's Lefty blew up too...
    I have a Prophet too...My riding is aggressive All mountain with lots of tech, rocks, steep rollers, small drops thrown in here and there.

    Perhaps the Lefty should never have come on the Prophet? maybe it should be exclusive to XC bike lines?

    Maybe I'm one of the few who took it beyond it's capabilities?
    Note: By no means did I ever abuse my fork....just my normal riding.

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeriderB View Post
    see...LWK's Lefty blew up too...
    I have a Prophet too...My riding is aggressive All mountain with lots of tech, rocks, steep rollers, small drops thrown in here and there.

    Perhaps the Lefty should never have come on the Prophet? maybe it should be exclusive to XC bike lines?

    Maybe I'm one of the few who took it beyond it's capabilities?
    Note: By no means did I ever abuse my fork....just my normal riding.
    I'll go out on a limb and guess that all these "exploding Max 140 forks" are all from one thing, the rebound shaft seal.

    Cannondale used a round profile O ring seal on these forks originally, then did a running change to a quad style profile later on. Many a puking fork fixed with a $.02 seal.

    Shall we discuss Fox's inability to be honest about actual travel, or the fact that their OEM seals routinely puke in less than a seasons use, while seals from Enduro, once installed, go much longer? Perhaps the three times I had to send back my RP23 for farting noises and leaking oil, in less than a year, or the F29 120 I have that is so sticky it might as well be a rigid fork, after two trips back to the mothership for the same complaint?

    Then there's the whole rebuild issue. What fork doesn't need rebuilding once a year or so? Perhaps rubber bumper forks with no oil damping, but honestly, any high performance product will require work from time to time, and sometimes, will come with a funky part, or a "whoops at the factory" installation item, requiring replacement....
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    I'll go out on a limb and guess that all these "exploding Max 140 forks" are all from one thing, the rebound shaft seal.

    Cannondale used a round profile O ring seal on these forks originally, then did a running change to a quad style profile later on. Many a puking fork fixed with a $.02 seal.

    Shall we discuss Fox's inability to be honest about actual travel, or the fact that their OEM seals routinely puke in less than a seasons use, while seals from Enduro, once installed, go much longer? Perhaps the three times I had to send back my RP23 for farting noises and leaking oil, in less than a year, or the F29 120 I have that is so sticky it might as well be a rigid fork, after two trips back to the mothership for the same complaint?

    Then there's the whole rebuild issue. What fork doesn't need rebuilding once a year or so? Perhaps rubber bumper forks with no oil damping, but honestly, any high performance product will require work from time to time, and sometimes, will come with a funky part, or a "whoops at the factory" installation item, requiring replacement....
    I will totaly agree and back you up on fox for most of this. Not sure about the rear shock, you might have got a bad one for those. Mine have all been solid needing nothing then the general maintenance but the forks. Definately major stiction with the OEM seals, miles better when enduros are put in also to avoid sticktion you do need to change the bath oil fairly frequently I think fox sugests ever 25hrs of riding. I've never done that but 2-3 times a summer for sure also Silicone spray after every ride on the stantions helps a lot. As for actual travel I'm not sure any air sprung fork straight out the box gets 100% of its suggested travel simply because of the air ramp up but if you put a HVAP(high volume air piston) in basically a shorter rod you can get all of it and more with out having to run really low air pressure.
    To be all honest. I don't think thee is any fork, shock, bike or bike product out there that, if you look hard enough or ask enough people, is with out fault or flaw to some degree. I think the lefty is a great XC fork but I would stick to a standard fork for the longer travel!

  53. #53
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    Love my 2005 Lefty Max carbon 140 (yes...the Manitou SPV)! 210 lbs, rode rock in Venezuela for 3 years now roots in Texas for 4. Never let me down. Loved it so much I tranferred it to my Titus Motolite. BIG improvement over the Fox 140 float w/15 mm axle. About the same wheelset (819 vs 719) so it was ALL lefty in the improved steering and confidence from a stiffer front end. I'll just keep getting it maintained every 2 years by Mendon (<$150!), keep happy with 3 minute bearing resets and transfer the darn thing to all my future bikes as I wear them out. The lefty refuses to die.
    2016 Canyon Strive CF 9.0 Race
    2009 Lefty-Equipped Titus Motolite

  54. #54
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    I rode an older lefty (2002) and it was great! I bought it used and it had never been serviced. I rode it for an entire season before sending it to Mendon. I'm not sure if the older ones are less susceptible to bearing migration but I never reset it and never lost any travel. I started leaving the ground a little bit more and I just blew through the travel and kept adding air and eventually the ride suffered. It was stiff but I needed more. Compared to my current '08 fox 36...well it doesn't. The 36 weighs about 2lbs more but when jumping, doing drops and plowing thru rock gardens the 36 with 20mm thru axle blows the lefty away. Like others have said, right tool for the job. Just my personal experience and I'm sure the new ones ride better. I honestly would have bought a prophet with a 140mm lefty in a second, just didn't find the right deal and got a used giant reign x instead. The fox 36 is bottom line R too so no more adjustments than my lefty had.

    Stiction isn't an issue on either one, both are/were very plush!

  55. #55
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    Im sorry, but those reasons are invalid too.

    1. Its so difficult because they cannondale wants you to have the best service you could ever get with your lefty

    2. my lefty is 14 years old and it is still the best shock ive ever had in years.

  56. #56
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    I have to say, as an owner of a 130mm SuperMax Lefty for 1 yr now, it has been absolutely trouble and worry free. I have 2,500+ miles of hard off road use on it and it performs outstanding in all types of terrain, including drops and jumps. My other bike is a 29er hardtail with a 32mm 120mm Fox. It does not even compare in terms of suspension action, damping and comfort.

  57. #57
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    I think the guy in the video said the damper was removed or the fork didn't have air in it.

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    ....Let's here about Specialized and Treks proprietary rear shocks, Specialized introducing a new 142mm (like 135 and 150 weren't POSSIBLY good enough) rear end spacing, Fox having a 15mm TA while RS, WB, Marz etc use the industry standard 20mm, etc etc etc...

    Let's go on about BB30,it's now ubiquitous, oh, wait, (sorry) Cannondale created that.
    This is hilarious to look at a couple years later. 12X142 has taken off like wildfire. 15mm equally so (All mine are RockShox forks ). I have 14 bikes and ZERO BB30s.

  59. #59
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    I'm still on a 2005 lefty max carbon. I weigh 215 or so. Started life on a 2005 Prophet 2000, migrated to a 2009 Titus Motolite. Still my ride of choice. Who said bearing migration reset takes 10 minutes? I do it every other ride just to ensure full travel and I do it in less than 60 seconds. Mendoncycle has kept my Lefty working perfectly over the years-thank you Craig!
    2016 Canyon Strive CF 9.0 Race
    2009 Lefty-Equipped Titus Motolite

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