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  1. #1
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    Replacement for Rockshox Dart 2

    Hey all. I don't come on here very often anymore. But every once in awhile I pop in. But I've got a question here. Last year I bought a bike from BD, a Windsor 4900. At the time, it was a very sufficient bike for my needs, but the past few months I've done some pretty extreme downhill riding at the Wisp (mchenry, md) and my bike just didn't hold up well at all. The tires were terrible for this terrain (kenda semi smooth threads ugh) and my fork... well.. here's the thing. After only going down the hill a few times, my Rockshox Dart 2 broke. On the right hand side where the fork lockout switch is, well the cap completely blew off the top and the cartridge inside flew right out the top. I took it to the bike shop at the resort and the guy there screwed it all back in... told me it should be fine that it's actually a very durable fork. But the next time I went back to do some more DH riding, same thing. When I got to the bottom of the mountain I noticed the cartridge on the left blew out the top. I was able to screw it back in but the threads I noticed were cheap plastic and weren't holding up.

    So I can see I'm probably going to need a replacement since this keeps happening. I was wondering if I should stick with another Dart 2, or if I should get something a little better. Any ideas here? I don't really want to spend more than $150 because I'm going to have to get some other upgrades too, before next season. Like tires, and maybe even some better brakes.

  2. #2
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    Well, you've just learned the limitations of the Dart first hand. You're not really going to find anything worthy of downhill for $150. Quite honestly, if you want to keep doing DH then you should really invest the money in a DH bike. It'll not only be a lot more fun to ride, but it'll be a lot more durable as well.

    As you've seen DH is really hard on equipment. If you don't want to end up with a clapped out bike then your options are laying off the DH or buying a bike capable of handling it.

  3. #3
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    Yea, Dart 2 and Dart 3 are a xc fork. I had a Dart 3 on my xc bike and they worked good (a bit heavy though). Simple to tune and it had a remote lock-out that spoiled me lol. However, for all mountain/trail
    and DH, I would'nt even think of useing them.
    Your lucky you did'nt break them in half really. Also they don't sell them anymore anyway.
    I used mine for xc for 3-4 years and they are still fine, but went to a dual-air for the light weight.

  4. #4
    FKA Malibu412
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    You might try the RockShox 32XC coil fork (formerly known as the Tora TK). It can be had for around $150 or a little more on ebay and with other clearance deals. Slightly better materials, features, and durability than the Dart, ime.
    Everything that kills me, makes me feel alive

  5. #5
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    Oh, btw... the Dart 2 was replaced with the XC 28 and the Dart 3 with the XC 30 TK.
    The Dart 3 with remote lock-out is called the XC 32 TK. Same thing but more money
    and new stickers really. Ok for cross-country, but will dive on you and bottom out if you go all mountain etc...

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    Ahh, so the xc 32 is the Tora, I see.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bataivah View Post
    Oh, btw... the Dart 2 was replaced with the XC 28 and the Dart 3 with the XC 30 TK.
    The Dart 3 with remote lock-out is called the XC 32 TK. Same thing but more money
    and new stickers really.
    Uh, not exactly, but no biggie. The XC 32 TK is a 32mm stanchion fork with a coil spring side and a TK damper, formerly know as the Tora TK, not a Dart. It can be had with or w/o the remote lockout but has lockout either way. It is all around a slightly better fork than the Dart 3.

    BTW, I don't think the OP is bombing Whistler. I get the impression he is mostly an XC rider that wants a little more durable and functional fork when pointing down some hills.
    Everything that kills me, makes me feel alive

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bad mechanic View Post
    Well, you've just learned the limitations of the Dart first hand. You're not really going to find anything worthy of downhill for $150. Quite honestly, if you want to keep doing DH then you should really invest the money in a DH bike. It'll not only be a lot more fun to ride, but it'll be a lot more durable as well.

    As you've seen DH is really hard on equipment. If you don't want to end up with a clapped out bike then your options are laying off the DH or buying a bike capable of handling it.
    This^^^

  9. #9
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    Wondered how the 32 was diff from the 30, thanx for the info. Still tryin' to figure out my motion control
    on my new Reba RL. They give no tuning info for them, but i really like these alot.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bataivah View Post
    Oh, btw... the Dart 2 was replaced with the XC 28 and the Dart 3 with the XC 30 TK.
    The Dart 3 with remote lock-out is called the XC 32 TK. Same thing but more money
    and new stickers really. Ok for cross-country, but will dive on you and bottom out if you go all mountain etc...
    What I just noticed looking through the sram website is that the XC 30 with aluminum steerer according to official data should weight less than 2 kg! If that's true then XC 30 is spot on for some cross country on the cheap.

  11. #11
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    Thanks for the replies. So I feel it's safe to say the Dart series just won't cut it. I enjoyed my downhill experiences this year... aside from the many tumbles and flips and nut busters my first day out... but I plan on picking up a season pass for next year so I'll be riding downhill quite a bit. I guess my next decision is:
    A: Upgrade my Windsor
    B: Get a different bike

    A good downhill bike as I understand, will be quite expensive and I'm not sure my finances will support it. Here I thought I was spending a fortune when I got this $440 bike. And only having the bike for a little over a year, it makes it almost wasteful to turn around already and buy another bike. I already have to buy some better gear for myself. Yeah so I've got a cheap 10 dollar helmet (no hatin' I know it's bad and I'll have a better one next year) and well... that's about it. No shin guards, elbow pads, notta.

    Now that you know my financial situation and my sucky job, what do you suggest? Upgrade or get a whole new bike?

  12. #12
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    Alum steerer is a nice upgrade from the dart 3 also. I never bothered to check all the new specs.
    Downhill bike if your gonna DH ride.

  13. #13
    FKA Malibu412
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    Quote Originally Posted by gemini9 View Post
    Now that you know my financial situation and my sucky job, what do you suggest? Upgrade or get a whole new bike?
    Keep the bike you have, stick with mostly XC/trail/light AM stuff until you have more skills, better gear and HEALTH INSURANCE to support more a more risky style of riding. Seriously. A good AM or even DH bike is going to run $1500-$2000 used and double or more for new. Do some upgrades, build skills, confidence and conditioning and then see where you're at in 6 mos-year.
    Everything that kills me, makes me feel alive

  14. #14
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    Well, I've done XC for awhile. I had a walmart bike (yeah I know) and rode that on some fire trails and all. JUNK. I threw it in the landfill and bought this windsor. I rode it for over a year but decided what the heck, and went on a downhill run at the resort and loved it. Now comparing the DH the fire trails and tow paths, it's quite boring. Plus, I've become friends with some others who have also gotten into DH riding with me. I can rent bikes at the resort if I want to pay $50+ a day, which I don't. My buddies get bike rentals for free since they have family employed there. But I can't see me pussing out and "quitting" downhill. Not something I really wanna do. I had a blast. We all went out about 4 times total and it's something we all want to keep doing. The resort does rid of their bikes every year so I can get one used for about 1k probably next spring. I think.

    Oh, as for the health insurance... um. No comment. :-X

  15. #15
    FKA Malibu412
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    How 'bout keep the Windsor, do a couple upgrades to make it more suitable for trail/light AM and rent a big bike when you want to commit suicide? I mean, do you have anything between boring fire roads and lift assisted resort riding with some single track and faster, flowy descents once in awhile? That's where the Windsor would work okay and you wouldn't have to step up to spending $1k or more for now. Just a thought.

    Oh hell, I could care less what you do. Save your money for a big bike ' cuz you are bombin Whistler or something like it.
    Everything that kills me, makes me feel alive

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by gemini9 View Post
    A: Upgrade my Windsor
    Do NOT do this.

    What you'll end up with is a bike that doesn't do XC anymore and still sucks for DH. Plus, you'll have dumped a bunch of money into it, and that's money which could have gone into a DH bike. You cannot make an XC bike into anything approaching DH and vice versa.

    Leave your Windsor as an XC only bike and buy a used DH bike. If you look around you can find one for $1,500 or less. I know it's a lot of money, but in the long run it's a lot less than trying to DH the Windsor. If you find yourself not riding the Windsor anymore sell it.

    Another option would be selling the Windsor now and buying an AM bike, but those aren't great for XC and they're not great for DH. I think unless you're specifically doing AM riding then they're too much of a compromise and you're better off having two separate, cheaper bikes.

    Regarding health insurance, at least get major medical before you go back to DH. The risk of substantial injury is a significantly greater and it's simply not worth destroying your financially in case of an accident.

    Just some stuff I found on Craiglist:
    Kona Stab Garbanzo - Mountain Bike, Downhill, disc, suspension!
    Specialized Big Hit 2 Downhill/Freeride
    kona

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