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  1. #1
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    need help picking a good used fork

    I started mountain biking when suspension was not widely used. I rode a ridged bike for several years then fell in love with the head shock because of the light weight and stiff fork. After riding bikes with a head shock for nearly 18 years I am looking for something with more travel and could use some tips on what to look for.

    first off limited budget so going used.

    second it will go on my cannondale jekyll which is an earlier model with a head shock so I will need to get the adapters, not sure if any other measurements play into it.

    I do like being able to adjust on the fly.

    I am more of a cross country guy but do like a faster downhill ride after a long uphill climb.

    weight is and always has been an issue for me.

    reliable and re-build-able and good quality is what I am after.

    is there a fork I should really be looking at or some to really avoid?? I didn't keep up on the technology of forks since I was always buying cannondales with headshoks

    really appreciate any help to avoid wasting my money.

    thanks for any input

  2. #2
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    I guess I'm on my own then?

  3. #3
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    You are asking a very broad question, these tend to not get answered. Maybe trying finding a fork that you think looks good, then ask what people think of it. Make sure what you choose fits your frame.

  4. #4
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    What year is your jekyll?

  5. #5
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    like 2000 or so. I bought it to hold me over till I could get what I wanted and I just love it so doing upgrades instead.

    Probably leaning towards rockshox of some sort now. the brand has been around forever. I may just aim for the 500 price range

  6. #6
    Rod
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    For 500 dollars you could probably get a new fork on sale or a new takeoff fork. A talas sounds right up your alley. Adjustability on the fly and I know you can rebuild fox forks.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

  7. #7
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    I checked ebay, the price on a talas isn't bad. they mostly look to be through axle forks, I do not have a through axle hub, is this an upgrade I should be looking into? what is the advantage??

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mostly Broken View Post
    I checked ebay, the price on a talas isn't bad. they mostly look to be through axle forks, I do not have a through axle hub, is this an upgrade I should be looking into? what is the advantage??
    A larger through axle will generally offer more torsional rigidity (ie: the fork will "twist" less). Downside is that you are looking at extra money to replace the front wheel, unless you are good at wrenching, and just want to replace the hub and spokes. Maybe there are adaptors for reducing a 15mm or 20mm axle to a 9 mm? I dunno.

  9. #9
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    You need to provide a little more info otherwise you will get no answers, or irrelevant/random answers.

    How much travel is on your current fork and how much are you now looking for? What's the AC (Axle to Crown) length on the fork (if you change AC length too much it messes with your head angle, bottom bracket height, and steering).

    What do you like adjusting "on the fly"? As far as I know, none of the Headshocks had externally adjustable travel, so are you referring to lockout or adjustable firmness which some of the Cannondale forks had?

    There's member called Mendoncyclesmith on here who is an expert on all things to do with headshocks and Canondales- it might be worth PMing him about a replacement or asking what adaptors you might need to use a non Canondale fork on the Jekyll. You're probably going to adaptors to switch from a 1.5 to a 1 1/8 steerer tube, a different stem, and if you are running a Lefty you need to replace your front hub.

  10. #10
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    I think my head shock only has 80 mm of travel. Just enough to take the edge off. yes it just locks out, the weird thing is I insist on on the fly adjustment or lock out but I can't remember ever actually using it. I guess the idea just appeals to me.

    less flex in the fork is why I went to a head shock to start with, acts like a ridged fork but with the cushy of suspension. it was a good idea but I just need more travel.

    I'm not sure how much travel I really need honestly, I just hope to get input from other riders who are more the all mountain type and see what they like I guess. I would suppose around the 100 to 140 mm range but maybe that's just a cross country style and all mountain riders like more.

    I will check into the adapters and size I will need, for sure don't want to go messing up the geometry of my bike

  11. #11
    Five is right out
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    I used to use lockout all the time on my headshock, but that was because it doubled as a commuter/touring bike.

    Lockout is a moderately common feature on XC forks these days if you want to retain it.

    If you want less flex, you should be looking at a 20mm through axle. This will require a new front hub and wheel rebuild, or an entirely new wheel.

    Find your AC height first. That will probably be the most important factor to consider when upgrading a frame that was designed 12 years ago. You can just use a tape measure to do this.

    If you want reliable, you are likely to have to sacrifice that if you move away from the headshock. Those things were crazily reliable (mine was serviced once in 8 years of riding, touring on 6 of seven continents and felt the same the whole time). Most modern forks will have more frequent service intervals and degrade over time. Admittedly, you usually also get more travel, adjustability and plushness than a 12 year old headshock.

  12. #12
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    I really do love the head shock but just need more travel. I have never serviced either of my head shocks and the two I now have are both over 12 years old. Maybe I should just shut up and keep riding it and leave well enough alone.

    my AC is 18 1/4 inches.

    what about a lefty?? I saw an entire bike for sale with a lefty for $450 at the end of last season, it was local, the guy wanted a season ski pass real bad.

  13. #13
    Rod
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mostly Broken View Post
    I really do love the head shock but just need more travel. I have never serviced either of my head shocks and the two I now have are both over 12 years old. Maybe I should just shut up and keep riding it and leave well enough alone.

    my AC is 18 1/4 inches.

    what about a lefty?? I saw an entire bike for sale with a lefty for $450 at the end of last season, it was local, the guy wanted a season ski pass real bad.
    The bike with a lefty for 450 dollars was a steal. Honestly, you should not go to more than 100mm of travel or you would probably mess up the geometry of your bike.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

  14. #14
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    I've had heard a lot of good feedback on foxshox reba rl forks, plenty of adjustablity. Usually brand new they are around 500-600, but if you could find one owned and recently serviced by a mechanic on ebay you could score one for 250-400 dollars.

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