I am a freakishly short adult male (4'11") who just bought a 24-inch wheeled specialized hotrock FSR (a kiddie bike) after finding that even the smallest-framed 26" bikes could not provide enough standover for my teeny 25.5 inch legs or a reasonable geometry (I'm spoiled by my custom 650c-based road frame). I also MTB newbee, so take it easy on me if I'm asking a stupid question.
After riding the bike for about a month (about 10 rides on mildy technical stuff, logs and roots mostly), I realize that I'm stuck with a pretty crapy 24" RST Capa T4 fork (coil/mcu with adjustable pre-load) and I am trying to figure out my options for an upgrade.
What I've found out so far is (please offer your feedback here):
1. Nobody makes a decent 24" suspension fork.
2. I could use a 26" fork with a 24" wheel if I switched to a disc brake in front, but that would change the geometry (which is why I chose a 24" bike) substantially. The current fork has roughly 50mm of travel and the sliders are 24", so switching to a 80mm 26" fork would push the headtube up about 2" (please tell me if my math is correct here).
3. There may be a way to upgrade the internals of my existing fork, but I need to do more research here, which part of the reason for my post. Would any of the upgrade kits (to retrofit to existing forks) work on a 24" model?
I also have this crazy idea, that I could somehow adapt the 24" sliders from my current fork onto the stanchions of a decent 26" model (and save my v-brake and an inch of fork length in the process). Am I nuts?
So, I am hoping that the experts here can offer some feedback or advice about my dilemma. Ideally, I would be able to maintain the geometry of the current fork and the short travel, but am hoping to keep the fork from bottoming out so much (I think I'm a bit heavier than the 10 year-olds this bike was built for) and to make it feel less mushy (adjustable damping?) without having to max out the preload and negate the advantage of having the fork in the first place.
Thanks in advance for your help and suggestions,
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Thread: 24" suspension fork