• 01-04-2013
    Axle and travels questions
    I'm look to replace my Rockshox Reba Race on a budget. Looking at either a Maintou Tower Pro 29er or the XFusion Slide RL2. I'm 6'2" 225lbs riding a Jamis Dragon steel frame 29er hardtail. Riding XC for fun and fitness with a few races thrown in. Wanting to try a couple of endurance races for fun too. I've considered going to a QR15 front axle from my current 9mm to get a stiffer front end (already have the hub adaptors for it), though the better deals consistently are on the 9mm dropout forks. How big of difference does it make? Also, I've been looking at 100mm forks as thats what my reba is, but I'm seeing a lot of smokin deals out there on 120mm forks of the same models. Would that be overkill for my needs and purposes, or should I consider it if I find a killer deal? I wonder if the increased sag needed would negate the increased fork length when it came to handling?
  • 01-05-2013
    I don't have any experience with the different axles, but I can say that having roughly the same stats as you, that I am happy with my slide 29 with 9mm axle. Everything that I have read, the 15 mm will stiffen up the front end the most and improve handling. I ride for fun and fitness so 9mm works for me. Most people on here will say go with the manitou. I was looking at the manitou a while back, but the fact that I had to change out the coil spring for a firmer one and could not find one online in stock made me look at other alternatives. You will get the most adjustability from the manitou as far as dampening goes, but you are stuck with whatever amount of travel the fork has ie. 100 or 120 as you cannot change this on the manitou. However, with the slide you lose some of the fine tuning, but you are able to change the amount of travel without buying extra parts. Meaning you can go from 100mm to 120mm if you like. Plus all the internals are metal... No plastic. <-- that is what sold me on the slide. Bottom line they are both good forks, but have their differences. I don't like to make a lot of changes on the trail so the slide is a good set and forget type of fork. Mind you I am still experimenting with different pressures and rebound so there is adjustability just not as much as the manitou as far as dampening goes.
  • 01-05-2013

    Originally Posted by jcmtbfreak View Post
    I'm seeing a lot of smokin deals out there on 120mm forks of the same models

    You don't say which in particular you are looking at, but many 120 mm forks can be internally reduced to 100 mm travel. Only a little more involved than changing wipers and seals and splash oil, which is a handy experience for any suspension fork owning mtbers.
  • 01-05-2013
    Ideally I think I want the15QR 100mm Manitou. I like the idea of having the adjustablility considering the variety of terrain I ride and with wanting to try some endurance races, it would be nice, and its lighter. The different spring issue has crossed my mind though. I've worked on my Reba before, and my old 26er RS Duke before that, but I really prefer not doing fork work. Haha, takes a long time and I dont have the work space now. And I do like the idea of spending less money (who doesn't!?), having all metal internals, and still coming away with a quality front end. (and a brand that not many people have, though both companies can claim that bragging right a bit) I haven't found any deals (barely any at all, deal or no deal) on a 15QR XFusions.

    I personally think 120mm travel is a little overkill for my riding. I think a 100mm is about right, heck maybe even an 80mm wouldnt be too bad. Been awhile since I've been on a 80. But I'm also about finding good deals and getting the most bang for my buck. So when I'm finding some great deals on 9mm 120mm Manitous, color me curious.
  • 01-06-2013
    There is a good reason the deals are on 9mm forks: no one wants them, and for good reason. I've never met a single person that's spent any significant time on a T/A that would consider going back. For me it's on par with going back to v-brakes, there's absolutely no reason I'd ever consider it. 9mm Qr is 1950s road bike technology and has no place on a mountain bike with suspension.

    With most air forks it's easy enough to reduce travel by 20mm, I wouldn't let that drive your decision unless you are serious weight weenie (as a dedicated 100mm fork would be slightly lighter than a 120 reduced). If it were me, I'd try 120 before reducing it anyhow, you might like the slacker geometry.