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  1. #1
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    1 Inch Stem Fork Options

    I need a replacement for my RST 381 shock, 1 inch thread less stem tube, 26 inch tire, center pull brakes. I see a few listings on Ebay for the SR Suntour like this one, SR Suntour I guess I'd need to make an adapter for the brakes, or change the brakes to side pull. Any other options besides used?




  2. #2
    CS2
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    There are a lot of experts here on the subject. Just be patient someone will chime in.
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  3. #3
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    If you want to keep those center pull cantilevers, it's going to be tough to find a replacement that isn't of the same vintage and quality as your RST. Best option for that route would be Rock Shox Judy with Speed Springs or Englund Air cartridges. If you wanted to go rigid, I think Kona Project Two's are easy to find in 1" threadless.

    If you're up for a minor upgrade by moving to V-brakes (and levers) you open up a lot more fork options.


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  4. #4
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    What would it cost to change the front brakes to V brakes?

    Can you even get just a front brake set, pads, cable, and lever?

  5. #5
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    If you search in this forum, we've had some discussions about them.

    I'll just briefly overview. First you want to try and match the axle to crown distance as closely as possible. RST 381 is somewhere around 430mm. If you go much higher than this, the ride quality will suffer, so I'd be looking in the 425 - 435mm range, 450 absolute max. The Suntour you posted is 485mm, which puts the front end about 2in higher. This is way too high IMO, you might get away with 450mm but I personally wouldn't consider going higher than that.

    Very few options for new if there are any at all.

    For suspension, you have older Quadra, Indy's, Judy's, SID's, Marz MX Comp, Marz Z1, Z2, Z3. There were a number of Manitou with 1in steerers as well. I'd avoid anything with elastomers, the SID is my top pick, but it's impossible to find in 1in these days. The Marz Z's hit ebay fairly frequently, but they can get a premium, they're my #2 picks. But, best case is to search for forks with 1in steerers and see what you can come up with. Set up a alert as well if you can't find anything right now.

    If you want to consider rigid, there's a number still available.

    Pricey, but good forks, can often find them on ebay as well: CarbonCycles.CC :: Components :: eXotic Shop :: One Inch Steerer :: eXotic Rigid Carbon Fibre :: CC-F0A25

    Kona, rigid bontrager forks, surly, there's a number of others that came in 1in, possible even older specialized or trek forks (early 90's). Whatever the case with any of these, rigid or suspension, try to get close on the axle to crown distance.

    As far as the brakes, you just need a new lever, cables, and v brake caliper. You can take your pick, they all use the same bosses that canti's use. Usually able to find some Avid SD7's or similar for about $20 for the whole setup. Older LX or XT are dirt cheap and work well.
    Last edited by jestep; 05-03-2017 at 09:51 AM.
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  6. #6
    the new Gilbert Grape
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    In the US, the last "good" 1" steerer suspension forks were made by Marzocchi in 2003. These did not come with a canti hanger and there's no way to attach one. To have a canti hanger you'd need to get a pre-2000 fork.

    Pace in England made 1 inch forks later than this, and maybe other areas had them as well.

    Your best best it to look for a used fork. Parts are becoming more scarce, and a 20 year old fork might work fine and it might not.

    Switching to v-brakes requires new calipers (cheap), new brake lever (not too expensive), and if your shifters are integrated with your brake levers you'll need to replace those too. You'll obviously need new cables and housing too. Plan on $100-$300 depending on what level of component you buy.

    A rigid fork, if that's an option, might be easier on the wallet.
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  7. #7
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    1 Inch Stem Fork Options

    No good new 1" suspension forks are available. If somebody in VRC makes a recommendation regarding one, they're probably in the wrong forum.

    I say go rigid or pick up a used one. Some good recommendations above.

    Or

    Try for shocks and suspension forum for modern suspension fork recommendations: http://forums.mtbr.com/shocks-suspension/

  8. #8
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    Lots of good data from everyone, much appreciated. Never even considered the axle to crown distance. This is looking to be more complicated than expected, and potentially expensive, especially for a 20+ year old bike. I might be better served just putting the money towards a newer, used MTB.
    Some thoughts, is it possible to remove the stem from my old fork and attach it to a new fork? I've done a bit of fabricating and have a friend with a machine shop so press fitting and machining wouldn't be a problem. If I choose to go rigid I could probably make some solid forks that replace the RST tubes.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by JRP3 View Post
    Some thoughts, is it possible to remove the stem from my old fork and attach it to a new fork? I've done a bit of fabricating and have a friend with a machine shop so press fitting and machining wouldn't be a problem..
    By "stem" I assume that you mean "steer tube."

    The steerer tubes on modern forks are pressed in, and likely epoxied in place as well. Getting one out would likely require a hefty press and would likely permanently damage the crown. If you do a search you'll find a few people who have removed the legs from forks by dremeling away the crown without damaging the legs. The legs can then be inserted into older "bolt-on" crown forks (like pre-96 Rock Shox). I'd go that route before I'd try replacing a steer tube.
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  10. #10
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    Yeah, steer tube Thinking I could cut the 1 1/8 tube off a new fork flush, turn a bushing that press fits inside that, and turn the inside of that into a press fit for a 1 inch tube, and press in a new piece of 1 inch tubing into that. Kind of a pain but possible. Or maybe make the bushing of thick enough material to turn the outside of it down so the 1 inch steer tube presses over it, might be easier and stronger. In that case I could cut off the old steer tube flush and use that.

    Like this

    1 Inch Stem Fork Options-fork-bushing.jpg

  11. #11
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    Decided to try and make a ghetto springer setup with some $3 hardware store springs

    If it works I'd like to find some cheap shock boots if anyone has a source, 1 1/4" i.d.

    1 Inch Stem Fork Options-springer-forks.jpg

  12. #12
    the new Gilbert Grape
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    Does the rebound in the fork still work? If not, you just made a pogo stick.

    Quote Originally Posted by JRP3 View Post
    Decided to try and make a ghetto springer setup with some $3 hardware store springs

    If it works I'd like to find some cheap shock boots if anyone has a source, 1 1/4" i.d.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  13. #13
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    Might be fun There seems to be some resistance to rebound, plus the springs are pretty stiff so not a lot of compression anyway. My initial idea was to cut some metal tubing as spacers and turn it into a rigid front end but thought I'd try some stiff springs first.

  14. #14
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    Just went for a quick ride, this totally works! The RST 381 wasn't a long travel shock to begin with so with these stiff springs it doesn't feel that different and I'm not getting any noticeable pogo stick effect. Maybe going fast down a washboard trail I would but I don't do much of that.
    I do have an issue with the tension on the steer tube, if I tighten it down enough to take the slop out of it the steering is really tight, and if I loosen it up so it steers properly the steer tube moves around in the frame, so I think I might have put something together in the wrong position. Should have paid closer attention when I took it apart

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