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  1. #1
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    Jamis Dakar xlt 1.0 FORK question

    I have a 2006 Dakar XLT 1.0 frame that normally comes with a 130mm travel fork. I'm shopping around and it seems that 100mm forks cost slightly less than the 130's. What are the pros and cons of going to a shorter travel fork for this frame? My riding will be mostly XC. Any brands and models that you would recommend? For what reasons? Thanks!

  2. #2
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    I have used a 2004 XLT with 2 different forks

    I have a 2004 XLT that I have used 2 different forks with...

    Fork 1 -- 2002 RockShox Psylo Race.
    Key features of note for the XLT question are:
    light weight (3.6#)
    120mm max travel (XLT OEM is 130)
    lockout (great for climing)
    30mm stanctions (a bit to flexy for aggressive XC/AM riding)
    Not very plush, actually rather harsh

    Fork 2 -- Currently a 2006 Manitou Minute 3
    Key features of note for the XLT question are:
    A bit heavier that #1 (4-ish#)
    130mm of travel, NO lockout (which I really miss!)
    Very stiff, 32 mm stanction
    VERY plush and capable

    For this bike, I;d go with a 130mm travel fork with 32mm stanctions, lockout (or on-the-fly adjustable travel) for climing. This bike is not the best climber and seriously benefits form lockout or travel adjustment during climbing. I would strongly avoid a 100mm fork as the bike was not designed for that and it will not ride properly. It will climb great with a 100mm fork. Manitous can be had for $250-300 at price point. Look for a 2005+ Minute 3 or a Nixon each with either RapidTravelWind-down (RTWD?) or IT (Infinite Travel). Fox will be 2x that price for something like a Vanilla 32 RLC with travel adjustment.

    In retrospect, I wish I had spent a bit more than the $250 I paid and gotten the Lockout and/or IT version. Otherwise the Minute3 for $250 is a killer fork for this bike. It is so much better than the Psylo.

    EDIT : The change from the psylo to the minute tilted the front of the bike up (ie. slackened the head tube angle) more toward the stock 68.5/8 degree. no a problem EXCEPT on steep sustained climbs... hence the suggestion of travel adjust.

  3. #3
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    I think I'm gonna have to disagree here.

    The OP stated that he will be using the XLT for XC riding, not aggressive riding. To each his own, but XC bikes have a tendancy to have steeper head angles. The XLT has a 68.5 degree head angle with a 130mm fork. If you drop it down to 100mm, it will be around 69.5-70 degrees which is more than adequate for snappy XC steering.

    I wouldn't use the XLT for normal XC riding b/c of the weight and climbing performance compared to dedicated XC bikes. But...if the frame is going to be used for XC only, then 100mm will work quite well for the OP's purpose.

    So...30mm stanchions will be fine, 100mm will be fine. Don't expect it to be a terribly stable at speed on DH sections though. The Dakar XLT was designed to be ridden like the above poster has described with a 130mm stout fork that will whup up on some nasty trail.



    Oh yeah...recommendations:
    Save a buck and go RockShox Tora or even better...Greenfishsports.com has the Manitou Black Super Air on sale for ~$230 or so. Only 3.7lbs. You're obviously wanting to save $$$ based on your statement above. Greenfish has severl on sale.

  4. #4
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    To Each, His own. BUT...

    Yes, the bike will have a HT angle more XC-ish, but I still feel strongly about a good quality fork. This is especially true since I have ridden the exact same bike with two forks. The difference in control along from the 32mm vs 30 mm stanctions was immediately noticable and HUGE. Minute3 100mm is also cheap at pricepoint. It is NOT an XC trail bike.. it's far too stout.

    So, just be prepared to have to tinker with position to compensate for the HT (and ST) angle changes..... I have no idea if there will be any issues with a bike that has 5" rear and 4" front travel..

  5. #5
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    I agree about the "good quality fork" as well. I had a Tora with 32mm stanchions and found it to be plenty stiff for XC thus the suggestion. I personally wouldn't own a fork with less than 32mm stanchions unless it was just some sort of super light rocket for doing groomed trails, hehe.

    The seat tube angle is something I hadn't considered. It should be an interesting project to say the least. I know that several people run the Talas or U-turn on their 5" bikes and crank it down for the climbing and XC'ish type stuff. This also brings down the front end a little.

    If you end up doing this little project, lemme know b/c I was considering it as well for a lighter alternative to my 32lb coil sprung wide-rim sled.

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