Which upgrade: Dropper or forks??- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Which upgrade: Dropper or forks??

    Hey I have a Giant Talon 2 with 2.8" tires and the stock Suntour XCM HLO (spring) forks. I have a few hundred dollars to invest in an upgrade. I'm still new with only one season under my belt and I ride in Northern Wisconsin. With my budget to consider... what would I get the most out of? Upgrading to the Suntour Raidon air fork or putting in a dropper post??!! Just looking for opinions!

  2. #2
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    Upgrading the fork seems like more bang for your buck.
    Caveat: I've never used a dropper.
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  3. #3
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    Fork. You are far from needing a dropper (rather over rated IMHO, I traded my dropper on my new bike for a standard before I even picked it up). They have their place once you get to riding at that level. And chances are you'll be after a better bike before you get to riding where a dropper will be desired.

    Droppers have been hyped a lot and do have a place for sure. But starting out it in the sport, just wasted money right now and good ones that wont be a pain in the rear will cost a few hundred dollars.

    As for forks, the upgrade program isnt a bad deal but it's not about just being an air fork, if your going to spend money get one that's a solid upgrade over your current one. An air fork that is basically the same thing you have already with an air spring isnt worth the money. Suntour makes some decent mid level forks but you could also find good deals on better forks used, very possibly spend only slightly more (or less if you catch a good deal) and have a NICE fork. And a good fork will do far more for your riding than a dropper ever could.

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  4. #4
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    Thanks for this. Well I was about to just move forward on the dropper but I started wondering about the forks. I'm glad I paused and posted this. It looks like it will be a little more complicated for me to upgrade the forks if going up to the Raidon through the upgrade program won't cut it. What should I look for in an upgrade that will make a real difference? And what is a good resource for used components?

    Quote Originally Posted by tigris99 View Post
    Fork. You are far from needing a dropper (rather over rated IMHO, I traded my dropper on my new bike for a standard before I even picked it up). They have their place once you get to riding at that level. And chances are you'll be after a better bike before you get to riding where a dropper will be desired.

    Droppers have been hyped a lot and do have a place for sure. But starting out it in the sport, just wasted money right now and good ones that wont be a pain in the rear will cost a few hundred dollars.

    As for forks, the upgrade program isnt a bad deal but it's not about just being an air fork, if your going to spend money get one that's a solid upgrade over your current one. An air fork that is basically the same thing you have already with an air spring isnt worth the money. Suntour makes some decent mid level forks but you could also find good deals on better forks used, very possibly spend only slightly more (or less if you catch a good deal) and have a NICE fork. And a good fork will do far more for your riding than a dropper ever could.

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    For me this would be a no-brainer: a dropper post is hugely important for me. I ride a lot of hills and technical stuff and the ability to change the seat height on the go is incredible. Even if you don't ride much intense stuff, there are so many benefits. It's nice on the back and legs to have a variety of options. I didn't know what I was missing before I had a dropper (same for tubeless).

    I got a Brand X dropper and it's been solid for 2 years now...Paid about $125 for it.

  6. #6
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    For your location, trail type and riding style, do you need either?
    Might it be better to just ride this bike, keep money available for repairs/tune ups/tires as they wear out, and save for an upgraded bike when you feel that is necessary?

    I live in Utah and had ridden Moab for years without a dropper, then got one years ago and it was a complete game changer. If I took my wife's dropper away, she'd divorce me! There are fine droppers for under $200....One Up, PNW, Brand-X, and others, but it might be money wasted for your riding.

    Just saw neeko b's post. I agree, the Brand-X is a smokin' deal and inexpensive.

    I use mine so much I almost think of it as a riser Vs. Dropper.
    Looking at this video on cornering, super aggressive cornering techniques even in flats (see time 2:30) are made much more effective with the dropper down. It's a very useful tool.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gF5K9V2w6W8

  7. #7
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    On the dropper I honestly don't know if I NEED one or not. Our terrain can be pretty challenging with a lot of ledges and rock gardens and lots of up and down. Other people here use them and love them and claim to use them more than their shifters. I do know that I've tried other hard tails with better forks and they felt WAY smoother and responsive than mine. I feel like it would be fun to have a dropper... but my intuition tells me that I'd be happier with better forks.

    Cool video.

    Quote Originally Posted by MSU Alum View Post
    For your location, trail type and riding style, do you need either?
    Might it be better to just ride this bike, keep money available for repairs/tune ups/tires as they wear out, and save for an upgraded bike when you feel that is necessary?

    I live in Utah and had ridden Moab for years without a dropper, then got one years ago and it was a complete game changer. If I took my wife's dropper away, she'd divorce me! There are fine droppers for under $200....One Up, PNW, Brand-X, and others, but it might be money wasted for your riding.

    Just saw neeko b's post. I agree, the Brand-X is a smokin' deal and inexpensive.

    I use mine so much I almost think of it as a riser Vs. Dropper.
    Looking at this video on cornering, super aggressive cornering techniques even in flats (see time 2:30) are made much more effective with the dropper down. It's a very useful tool.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gF5K9V2w6W8

  8. #8
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    A dropper will give you far more benefit. They change the way you can ride the bike..if IF you make an effort to use them enough so it becomes second nature. Some people never do that so it doesn't do much for them.

    Everything else is just marginal gains of varying degrees. You could get a top of the line bike, and you'd still be held back by the lack of a dropper.

  9. #9
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    Upgrade the fork first would be my suggestion. The dropper (while I love 'em and always have one on my bike) is a little bit of a luxury item.

  10. #10
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    You say "few hundred" dollars. What is your exact budget?

    I'm in "camp dropper" myself.

    My old bike had a crappy 100mm coil sprung fork, and a manual seatpost. I adjusted the seatpost like 10-30 times a ride, and still didn't have it where I wanted all the time (ie, had I had a dropper, I would have done it more often). So when I finally got a bike that had a dropper, it was a game changer. I didn't have to live with my seat akwardly in the way at any time.

    My buddy put a BrandX dropper on his hardtail (which he got for $100), and its been problem free for at least a year. I also have seen some pretty good deals on the V1 of the OneUp dropper ($100-150).

    I'd wager that the biggest change is if you get a new air fork, is likely just having an fork that is sprung for your actual weight. You can get pretty good deals on basic air forks, especially if you get a new-takeoff from someplace like pinkbike.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    On the dropper I honestly don't know if I NEED one or not. Our terrain can be pretty challenging with a lot of ledges and rock gardens and lots of up and down. Other people here use them and love them and claim to use them more than their shifters. I do know that I've tried other hard tails with better forks and they felt WAY smoother and responsive than mine. I feel like it would be fun to have a dropper... but my intuition tells me that I'd be happier with better forks.
    You sound well informed, so I'd say go with your intuition.

  12. #12
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    I am loving the dropper.
    Going up itís up, going down itís down.
    If all you ride is flat and fairly straight, no need.
    I expect if you get one you will incorporate it into your riding style fairly quickly and appreciate it fairly quickly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MSU Alum View Post
    You sound well informed, so I'd say go with your intuition.
    Well I guess the main thing I want to know now is: Can I replace my Suntour XCMs for $200 and have it be a Ďgame changerí. I mean... is the XCM crap just because it dies faster or is it the performance?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    Well I guess the main thing I want to know now is: Can I replace my Suntour XCMs for $200 and have it be a Ďgame changerí. I mean... is the XCM crap just because it dies faster or is it the performance?
    It's mostly the durability. Going from low end to mid-range just gets you durability for the most part, the performance advantage is at the high end.

    The problem with upgrading a bike with that fork is that the rest of the bike is at the same level as the fork and it's easy to start throwing more money at it than you should. Money that could go towards your next, significantly nicer, bike.

    Entry level bikes are great when you're not sure if you're into the sport or not, but once you decide that this is what you want to do and that you want to invest more money into the sport, invest that money wisely.

  15. #15
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    That might be the kicker then...

    QUOTE=richde;14604405]It's mostly the durability. Going from low end to mid-range just gets you durability for the most part, the performance advantage is at the high end.[/QUOTE]

  16. #16
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    Yeah, with a $200 budget, can you get a fork that is a significant upgrade to the Suntour in performance, which is something you'll see right off the bat?
    An improvement only in durability is good, but not very gratifying for the ride quality.
    I don't know the answer to that question. On the hardtails you've tried, and loved, what fork were they running?

  17. #17
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    Not to mention, the Talon is a straight head tube so the OP will either need to replace his bottom headset with and external one to support a tapered steer tube or find a straight steer tube fork.

    What makes things harder is finding a straight steer tube fork with QR else the OP will also need to upgrade his front wheel hub to a thru-axle.

    You can probably find a cheaper air fork for around $200 like a Rockshox Recon which isn't bad for an entry level fork and does come in a QR option or a Fox 32 perhaps? You might get lucky with a used Reba for sub $300.

    Best bet is to find someone with a Talon 1 who just upgraded their fork. You can get their Suntour air fork for under $200 easily and it would be a perfect swap out.

  18. #18
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    I can get the Suntour Raidon air fork for $200 through the upgrade program ... but no longer sure I would get what I want in terms of performance?

    I can look it up as well... but what is the significance of QR?
    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    It's mostly the durability. Going from low end to mid-range just gets you durability for the most part, the performance advantage is at the high end.

    The problem with upgrading a bike with that fork is that the rest of the bike is at the same level as the fork and it's easy to start throwing more money at it than you should. Money that could go towards your next, significantly nicer, bike.

    Entry level bikes are great when you're not sure if you're into the sport or not, but once you decide that this is what you want to do and that you want to invest more money into the sport, invest that money wisely.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trinimon View Post
    Not to mention, the Talon is a straight head tube so the OP will either need to replace his bottom headset with and external one to support a tapered steer tube or find a straight steer tube fork.

    What makes things harder is finding a straight steer tube fork with QR else the OP will also need to upgrade his front wheel hub to a thru-axle.

    You can probably find a cheaper air fork for around $200 like a Rockshox Recon which isn't bad for an entry level fork and does come in a QR option or a Fox 32 perhaps? You might get lucky with a used Reba for sub $300.

    Best bet is to find someone with a Talon 1 who just upgraded their fork. You can get their Suntour air fork for under $200 easily and it would be a perfect swap out.

  19. #19
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    Your current bike uses a 100mm Quick Release (QR) skewer to secure the front wheel to the fork. All the good forks out there uses thru-axles instead of QR. So the dilemma becomes, do you upgrade the fork to something mediocre and keep the stock wheel but if you end up upgrading later on, you would have to buy a new fork and wheel or do you save up some extra $$ and just get the external headset, better fork with tapered steer tube AND wheel to match and should you upgrade the frame later on, you can carry over those parts to it.

  20. #20
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    Ha! Or just get a dropper post. Well Iím learning a lot from this thread. Thanks for helping me out!

    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    It's mostly the durability. Going from low end to mid-range just gets you durability for the most part, the performance advantage is at the high end.

    The problem with upgrading a bike with that fork is that the rest of the bike is at the same level as the fork and it's easy to start throwing more money at it than you should. Money that could go towards your next, significantly nicer, bike.

    Entry level bikes are great when you're not sure if you're into the sport or not, but once you decide that this is what you want to do and that you want to invest more money into the sport, invest that money wisely.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trinimon View Post
    Your current bike uses a 100mm Quick Release (QR) skewer to secure the front wheel to the fork. All the good forks out there uses thru-axles instead of QR. So the dilemma becomes, do you upgrade the fork to something mediocre and keep the stock wheel but if you end up upgrading later on, you would have to buy a new fork and wheel or do you save up some extra $$ and just get the external headset, better fork with tapered steer tube AND wheel to match and should you upgrade the frame later on, you can carry over those parts to it.

  21. #21
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    Upgrading from an inexpensive fork to a REBA on one of my hard tails made a huge difference in the handling and performance of the bike. The fork was lighter, more tunable, better performing, and more durable. I acquired the REBA from a bike company employee who lives nearby for $150 and felt the investment was well worth it. I found a similar deal for another bike via the local craigslist (SID for $200). That being said, I have been riding my bikes with a fixed saddle height since 1988. While I enjoy using droppers on demo and rental bikes, I haven't felt the need to make that change on any of my own bikes yet.

  22. #22
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    A dropper saves you the hassle of having to stop, get off your bike, and lower your seat. Thats it.

    Before droppers, thats what we did. We didnt just ride with our seats sky high and crash if terrain changed. We just stopped and dropped our seats. Not the end of the world.

    I LOVE my dropper post, and I have one on all my bikes, and will continue to do so. It makes it so I dont have to stop. Its convenience only, zero "performance" comes from it, just convenience.

    The fork however, thats your front end control. Thats your tracking, stability, and everything else defining your ride up front. Theres no getting around a crappy fork.

    The XCM HLO fork is bad. I mean really bad. Unless you're clunking around on paved streets, that fork is beating you up at best, and probably dangerous at worst. Its a 2800g monster that doesnt appear to have any actual damping.

    Get both. Brand x droppers are about $115 shipped. I got my Raidon off ebay brand new for $120. Its not a great fork, but it has rebound control and dropped a kilogram off the front of my bike. Theres a lot of pretty good forks that can be had for crazy deals if you hunt.

  23. #23
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    Ok... so you think the Raidon is a decent upgrade then. My wife has one on her Fuse and it feels way smoother compared to mine. But itís also set to her much lighter weight and is soft compared to mine... so Iím not sure if Iím just noticing that. I canít set mine to any weight.

    So say I look on eBay for a Raidon instead of the upgrade program. I obviously want a non-tapered tube and QR to work with my Talon... but what other specs to consider?



    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    It's mostly the durability. Going from low end to mid-range just gets you durability for the most part, the performance advantage is at the high end.

    The problem with upgrading a bike with that fork is that the rest of the bike is at the same level as the fork and it's easy to start throwing more money at it than you should. Money that could go towards your next, significantly nicer, bike.

    Entry level bikes are great when you're not sure if you're into the sport or not, but once you decide that this is what you want to do and that you want to invest more money into the sport, invest that money wisely.
    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    A dropper saves you the hassle of having to stop, get off your bike, and lower your seat. Thats it.

    Before droppers, thats what we did. We didnt just ride with our seats sky high and crash if terrain changed. We just stopped and dropped our seats. Not the end of the world.

    I LOVE my dropper post, and I have one on all my bikes, and will continue to do so. It makes it so I dont have to stop. Its convenience only, zero "performance" comes from it, just convenience.

    The fork however, thats your front end control. Thats your tracking, stability, and everything else defining your ride up front. Theres no getting around a crappy fork.

    The XCM HLO fork is bad. I mean really bad. Unless you're clunking around on paved streets, that fork is beating you up at best, and probably dangerous at worst. Its a 2800g monster that doesnt appear to have any actual damping.

    Get both. Brand x droppers are about $115 shipped. I got my Raidon off ebay brand new for $120. Its not a great fork, but it has rebound control and dropped a kilogram off the front of my bike. Theres a lot of pretty good forks that can be had for crazy deals if you hunt.

  24. #24
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    If you want to keep your current wheel and just upgrade the fork, you're looking for a 1 1/8" straight steer tube with QR. Your Talon is 100mm travel but you can get away up to 120mm and possibly 130mm tops. If you get a Suntour fork (Radion, Epxiom or Epicon) that's 130mm, there an internal adjustable pin that will allow you to switch it to 120mm or 100mm.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    ...

    I LOVE my dropper post, and I have one on all my bikes, and will continue to do so. It makes it so I dont have to stop. Its convenience only, zero "performance" comes from it, just convenience.

    ...

    The fork however, thats your front end control. Thats your tracking, stability, and everything else defining your ride up front. Theres no getting around a crappy fork.

    ...

    Get both. Brand x droppers are about $115 shipped. I got my Raidon off ebay brand new for $120. Its not a great fork, but it has rebound control and dropped a kilogram off the front of my bike. Theres a lot of pretty good forks that can be had for crazy deals if you hunt.
    Thats exactly it.

    On long trails that are all one direction, then the other (like an hour of climbing, then 5-10 min of descending), dropper posts don't make much of a difference.

    If you're lapping short trails, or riding undulating terrain, where the seat height would "ideally" be changing anywhere from a few times a minute, to every few minutes, that convenience adds up (as most people need to get off the bike, change the seat height, get back going again, etc).

    The fork will change how your bike actually rides.

    And if you're lucky, you may be able to swing both.

  26. #26
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    Notice how those promoting droppers have been riding for a long time. So a dropper made sense to get the most, but none of them notice or mention the bottom end fork your dealing with. Having spent plenty of time on an entry bike and having ridden those forks vs good forks and having ridden with and without a dropper, forks (and I guess in your case a front wheel) make a bigger difference when learning. I have ridden plenty to get the benefits of a dropper, I wont deny that. They help but the effort of learning to use one adds complexity to already trying to learn bike handling skills.

    But my opinion is fork matter first then a dropper. If those same people had to ride with that fork they would understand better why I say what I do.

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  27. #27
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    Yeah I definitely see this and Iím now trying to weigh whether or not going to the Raidon and keeping the same wheel is a good option. All I know for sure is that my wifeís Raidon fork on her Fuse is smoooth compared to my XCM. It also sounds like Iíd get some improvement in weight.
    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    It's mostly the durability. Going from low end to mid-range just gets you durability for the most part, the performance advantage is at the high end.

    The problem with upgrading a bike with that fork is that the rest of the bike is at the same level as the fork and it's easy to start throwing more money at it than you should. Money that could go towards your next, significantly nicer, bike.

    Entry level bikes are great when you're not sure if you're into the sport or not, but once you decide that this is what you want to do and that you want to invest more money into the sport, invest that money wisely.
    Quote Originally Posted by tigris99 View Post
    Notice how those promoting droppers have been riding for a long time. So a dropper made sense to get the most, but none of them notice or mention the bottom end fork your dealing with. Having spent plenty of time on an entry bike and having ridden those forks vs good forks and having ridden with and without a dropper, forks (and I guess in your case a front wheel) make a bigger difference when learning. I have ridden plenty to get the benefits of a dropper, I wont deny that. They help but the effort of learning to use one adds complexity to already trying to learn bike handling skills.

    But my opinion is fork matter first then a dropper. If those same people had to ride with that fork they would understand better why I say what I do.

    Sent from my SM-N975U using Tapatalk

  28. #28
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    Is this a one time thing? Upgrade the fork first...then get a dropper.

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    Of course not but I have to do one or the other first and might not justify putting more money into it for awhile. Unfortunately... budget is tight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Is this a one time thing? Upgrade the fork first...then get a dropper.
    Buy my suntour XCR air for ~$140usd AND get a $100ish dropper. Problem solved

    I never had a dropper til 2018, and I feel it was the best thing I ever bought for my bike. Granted, I already have an upper end bike/fork, I'm not a newbie, and do a reasonable amount of steep, slow technical downhill trails to warrant the use of the post.

    Id say, if the fork isn't hurting your riding, go dropper. if you find the fork is terrible / unsafe, then do that first.

  31. #31
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    I can get the Epixcon for $175 free shipping on eBay: https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?m...2F202543918485



    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    It's mostly the durability. Going from low end to mid-range just gets you durability for the most part, the performance advantage is at the high end.

    The problem with upgrading a bike with that fork is that the rest of the bike is at the same level as the fork and it's easy to start throwing more money at it than you should. Money that could go towards your next, significantly nicer, bike.

    Entry level bikes are great when you're not sure if you're into the sport or not, but once you decide that this is what you want to do and that you want to invest more money into the sport, invest that money wisely.
    Quote Originally Posted by tigris99 View Post
    Notice how those promoting droppers have been riding for a long time. So a dropper made sense to get the most, but none of them notice or mention the bottom end fork your dealing with. Having spent plenty of time on an entry bike and having ridden those forks vs good forks and having ridden with and without a dropper, forks (and I guess in your case a front wheel) make a bigger difference when learning. I have ridden plenty to get the benefits of a dropper, I wont deny that. They help but the effort of learning to use one adds complexity to already trying to learn bike handling skills.

    But my opinion is fork matter first then a dropper. If those same people had to ride with that fork they would understand better why I say what I do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Is this a one time thing? Upgrade the fork first...then get a dropper.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    Of course not but I have to do one or the other first and might not justify putting more money into it for awhile. Unfortunately... budget is tight.
    If the fork is a real basic one...upgrading to a higher end air fork will make a pretty big difference. I've ridden low end coil forks and found them to be like pogo sticks when the riding gets fast and rough. A nicer fork will make riding rough terrain feel much smoother...bike will track straighter...a plush feeling you won't get with a basic coil fork.

    I've got droppers on all my current bikes, but I've also ridden without one for a real long time. If it was me...I'd upgrade the fork before getting the dropper.

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    If youre doing the fork, do it right. The suntour fork is not enough improvement over the one you have I think for that amount of money.

    Search for a reba. There's currently a 120mm 27.5 non boost one for $210us on ebay (new). That's a common price for them to show up (happens to be the one I need right now). I expect you need the boost 29 version for the big tires.

  34. #34
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    I just got my first new bike in over 25 years (Specialized Fuse Comp 27.5+) last week and it came with a dropper.

    At first I thought, ďWhatís the point, how often do you adjust the seat height anyway?Ē

    Then I did my first ride with it and thought, ďHow have I managed to ever ride without one?Ē




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  35. #35
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    Looks like all the Rebas have tapered tubes though...

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    Quote Originally Posted by tigris99 View Post
    Notice how those promoting droppers have been riding for a long time. So a dropper made sense to get the most, but none of them notice or mention the bottom end fork your dealing with.
    I have a very, very nice bike, but I also ride not-so-nice bikes now and then...

    They're not so bad. They don't have the parts I want or like, but they work fine for the kind of riding the bikes were made for. I ride them at my moderate pace and there really isn't much to complain about. The suspension takes the edge off bumps, the brakes stop the bike, the shifters shift, it works fine. They could be better, but they're not so bad that it impacts my enjoyment or ability to ride the bike.

    The vast majority of people aren't held up by their equipment, they're the weak link, I'm the weak link on my bike.

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    If the frame uses press in cups for the headset...you can get a lower cup that can take a tapered fork. If the bearings drop straight into the frame with no external cups...then its a no go. You should be able to tell just by looking at the headset.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    Looks like all the Rebas have tapered tubes though...
    they dont, but, im fairly certain the talon is tapered. the xcm fork is NOT tapered, but it will have a race adapter (my gt avalanche had that)

    and as stated, anything except a classic external 1-1/8" head tube can fit a tapered fork with various headset cups. my giant NRS for example came with a 1-1/8" sid, with internal cups. it now has a tapered reba with an external lower cup.

    edit: looking at talons on google. i think they are 44mm head tubes like my older NRS. so they can support tapered forks with an external lower cup.

    adds $15-$30 to the cost (nukeproof at crc is a good option), but you also get a better headset while your at it.

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    Yikes! Complicated. So I now need to find out if I need tapered or straight tubes. What exactly do I look for on the headset??? I was looking hard at the current $175 listing for the Epixon... but they have 1 1/8Ē straight tubes.

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    well, first things first, would be to show us a picture of the head tube on your bike, along with a rough measurement in mm of the outside diametre at the bottom.

    once we know its 44mm (inside diam)... then you know you can have straight OR tapered forks, and pick the one that's the best deal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    Yikes! Complicated. So I now need to find out if I need tapered or straight tubes. What exactly do I look for on the headset??? I was looking hard at the current $175 listing for the Epixon... but they have 1 1/8Ē straight tubes.
    Pull up the specs from Giant's site to see the correct measurements for an upgraded fork. Here, you can base on what you need, plug in the info to your disred fork.. it has to fit the headset/tapered or straight and offset of choice... usually, matching the offset and travel would be best with better engeneering within the fork. What year is that Giant?
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    Just pulled a video since there doesn't seem to be much info on the bike.. looks like a straight tube.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VsbZ5hevSI (this is a 2020 model)

    I question this guys capabilities at bikes... o.O
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    https://www.chainreactioncycles.com/.../rp-prod124574

    EX44/40 model is what you would need, if your bike is indeed 44mm

    Youd need to check the depth of the headset bore. Just remembered that. My gian had a very shallow bore, which i had to ream deeper for the external cups. My cannondale is the reverse, just clear the whole way through.

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    The Talon is a straight steer tube, 'cause I ran into this same upgrade issues with my Talon 1. You can add a tapered steer tube if you swap out your lower headset to an EC-44/40.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trinimon View Post
    The Talon is a straight steer tube, 'cause I ran into this same upgrade issues with my Talon 1. You can add a tapered steer tube if you swap out your lower headset to an EC-44/40.
    So the lower bore is deep enough for cups?

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    Quote Originally Posted by smashysmashy View Post
    So the lower bore is deep enough for cups?
    Yup. I upgraded the cups on my Talon 1 but only for sealed bearings. I only installed a Rockshox Recon with straight steer tube but I did pick up a Cane Creek EC 44/40 lower headset to install if I come across a good deal on a nicer fork.

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    Droppers are great, but I would upgrade the fork. The XCM is garbage, I would rather have a Recon air fork. Get a dropper later. A good fork will make the bike ride so much better.
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    there is one problem with getting a dropper: It will make you ride so much better and more aggressively that you'll probably need a new fork to keep up

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    I would ride a rigid bike with a dropper before riding a hardtail or full suspension without one.

    There was a time when I'd've told you the fork is the most important part of your bike. It's not far off. However, getting a dropper post was a game-changer. It depends a lot on what your terrain is like, however. A lot of my local rides feature a massive, steep climb with no breaks in the climbing until you're at the top. At that point, it was a simple matter of then lowering the seat for the descent and enjoying a full range of motion for technical descending.

    Your arms and legs are your number one source of suspension; I don't care what bike you're on. You cannot fully utilize them while also balancing your weight on both tires for traction whilst the seat is all the way up. There will be people who argue with that. They are not the ones who end up on podiums, I've found.

    Having a dropper ensures that you've always got the perfect seat height available for any given situation. I use mine more often than I shift. I especially appreciate having it on terrain with lots of ups and downs, but even on trails that are all up, then all down -- it's still better than a quick release, as I don't have to fuss with my seat height again for the next climb; it just returns to the perfect position at the touch of the lever.

    Yes, eventually replace that fork, but get a dropper first.
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    Mossanimal, reading some of your posts, you are obviously really trying to think this through as logically as possible. Do a pros and cons list and see what makes sense for you. Some suggest a dropper, which is what they need. Same with fork suggestions. What do you need?

    If it were me, and I just had to buy something, I'd upgrade the fork. I think of it this way. A dropper is something you might use on occasion on some rides. An upgraded fork, however, you will notice every time you get on the bike, and on every ride. Personally, I am far more concern about handling and ride quality than I am about being able to drop the saddle. Just my opinion.
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    Thanks for the input folks! Well ... my forks just give me a bad feeling and cause me to frown at my bike so Iím going to go ahead and switch them out for now. But I now see that I can get into a dropper post pretty economically... so that wonít be far behind. Question though... if I get a dropper with internal cables... how difficult is it for me to run them myself?

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    I used to have a bike without a dropper, it also had a very harsh entry level fork. I was also a beginner, which means I wasn't riding technical terrain particularly fast (still working on it TBH). Eventually I upgraded the fork with a better 1 1/8" option and QR dropouts. Fork rode great, and later I also upgraded my wheels. Then I regretted both moves, because I could have gone with a thru axle fork and front hub if I had planned this correctly. This is not entirely relevant to your question, just don't repeat the mistake I made.

    Now the relevant part: If the trails you ride are constantly going up and down, get a dropper. If you ride straight to the top and then go straight down, get a fork.

    However, since you are new to the sport, my personal recommendation is to get a dropper. It will make you very comfortable on technical terrain due to the fact that the saddle will be out of the way and you'll be able to move freely. This will allow your technique to evolve as well. Your 2.8 tyres should mask some of the trail chatter that the fork can't anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    Thanks for the input folks! Well ... my forks just give me a bad feeling and cause me to frown at my bike so Iím going to go ahead and switch them out for now. But I now see that I can get into a dropper post pretty economically... so that wonít be far behind. Question though... if I get a dropper with internal cables... how difficult is it for me to run them myself?
    There are external droppers, where you run the cable to the front derailleur cable run if it is available - or just zip tie it to the frame.

    Internal ones need routing supplied on the frame. your bike likely doesn't have it. I drilled holes in my giant - but im a machinist, with tools and *some* clue of the consequences, so i'd say, don't do that :P

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    No my Talon is all internal

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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    Thanks for the input folks! Well ... my forks just give me a bad feeling and cause me to frown at my bike so Iím going to go ahead and switch them out for now. But I now see that I can get into a dropper post pretty economically... so that wonít be far behind. Question though... if I get a dropper with internal cables... how difficult is it for me to run them myself?
    With some patience, it can be done. Carefully pry out and move aside the little rubber cups at the head tube area and the one down by the bottom bracket. Then it's a matter of fishing the cable housing up over the BB and into the seat tube. I used a cut/straightened coat hanger with a small hook at the end to help pull the cable housing upwards into the seat tube, then feed the cable housing from the head tube and it will start sliding up the seat tube.

    Or get one of these instead of a coat hanger.


  56. #56
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    Upgradeitis will take all your money, then youíll be left with slightly better components on a low end frame.

    I vote that you get neither upgrade and instead put that money towards an entirely new bike that has higher end everything (including a dropper).

  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    No my Talon is all internal
    Is there an unused internal route?
    Your Talon may be different, but on my 2019 Trance there is a rubber tube the length of the internal routing that makes running the cable/housing pretty easy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Upgradeitis will take all your money, then youíll be left with slightly better components on a low end frame.

    I vote that you get neither upgrade and instead put that money towards an entirely new bike that has higher end everything (including a dropper).
    Oy ve! Story of my life! I wish I'd done that 'cause I've practically replaced everything on my Talon 1 'cept the frame and I could have saved $$ had I just bought a Fathom2 or Fathom1 instead. I'll be putting back most of the stock parts and giving the bike to my GF and will build a HT next spring.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Upgradeitis will take all your money, then youíll be left with slightly better components on a low end frame.

    I vote that you get neither upgrade and instead put that money towards an entirely new bike that has higher end everything (including a dropper).
    i disagree to some degree, at least today and on this bike. Many of the frames on slightly cheaper bikes, like this talon (which isnt "low end" really), are the same frame as on the more expensive parts build bikes. You often have to jump MUCH higher in price to get both a parts, and frame upgrade.

    My GT avalanche is a good examples. alivio/acera version and XT version are the same frame, just different colour - and almost $1000cdn price difference. To get a zaskar with better parts than the bottom end avalanche, you pay hundreds more and you dont get much for it except slightly less weight and a through axle.

    It would be different if he had a walmart bike with "ok" parts and a crap frame. He has the opposite.

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by cookieMonster View Post
    I would ride a rigid bike with a dropper before riding a hardtail or full suspension without one.

    There was a time when I'd've told you the fork is the most important part of your bike. It's not far off. However, getting a dropper post was a game-changer. It depends a lot on what your terrain is like, however. A lot of my local rides feature a massive, steep climb with no breaks in the climbing until you're at the top. At that point, it was a simple matter of then lowering the seat for the descent and enjoying a full range of motion for technical descending.

    Your arms and legs are your number one source of suspension; I don't care what bike you're on. You cannot fully utilize them while also balancing your weight on both tires for traction whilst the seat is all the way up. There will be people who argue with that. They are not the ones who end up on podiums, I've found.

    Having a dropper ensures that you've always got the perfect seat height available for any given situation. I use mine more often than I shift. I especially appreciate having it on terrain with lots of ups and downs, but even on trails that are all up, then all down -- it's still better than a quick release, as I don't have to fuss with my seat height again for the next climb; it just returns to the perfect position at the touch of the lever.

    Yes, eventually replace that fork, but get a dropper first.
    I assure you, we didnt all just crash recklessly before droppers were invented.

    The only thing a dropper does is save you the hassle of stopping to lower your seat. That IS a big hassle, but its not impossible to stop and lower your seat. I did it for 10 years.

    It is impossible to make a crappy fork actually work. It wont work for 100% of your ride, and theres no getting around that. Those cheap suntours literally have no damping. Not poor damping, but *no* damping. Just wild knocking and bucking. They're really not even safe for mountain biking.

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    I wonder if all the riders who say dropper upgrade before the fork ever rode a bike with a $50 budget cheapie spring fork, or rigid fork for that matter, on the trails? It's not fun, at least at my age now.

    25yrs ago, I'd drop my seat down 1/2 way so it was high enough to pedal seated but low enough to give enough clearance for small drops/jumps etc. Didn't need a dropper back then and couldn't afford one (if they were around back then) flipping burgers as a teenager at the Golden Arches.

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    i raced mostly on rigid. i had a quadra 21r - debatably worse than the xcm.

    I dont think its that the people have never done it, i think its that their riding environment, and their skill informs the decision. You could ride a fixie cross bike on many of my trails.. with a dropper. Without a dropper, and a good fork you will be balking on a few steep areas. They rate the trails double black, not because they are particularly hard, but because the cost of failure is high. the dropper educes that chance of failure much more than a better fork.

    But if you live somewhere else, your priorities will be entirely different.

  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by smashysmashy View Post
    i disagree to some degree, at least today and on this bike. Many of the frames on slightly cheaper bikes, like this talon (which isnt "low end" really), are the same frame as on the more expensive parts build bikes. You often have to jump MUCH higher in price to get both a parts, and frame upgrade.

    My GT avalanche is a good examples. alivio/acera version and XT version are the same frame, just different colour - and almost $1000cdn price difference. To get a zaskar with better parts than the bottom end avalanche, you pay hundreds more and you dont get much for it except slightly less weight and a through axle.

    It would be different if he had a walmart bike with "ok" parts and a crap frame. He has the opposite.
    Here's the thing, bikes range in price all the way up to over $10,000 now. Google tells me that the OP's bike (Giant Talon 2) is $749.99 brand new. His bike is in the bottom 10% of the range, so that counts as low end. If that's all he can afford right now then so be it, but to say it's opposite of low end is totally inaccurate. No jab at what he can afford right now, because I was there at one time too, but call it what it is. It's not a good place to do upgrades, IMO. Save that money for something more, even if it takes awhile, and even if it's gently used.

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    I see what you are saying... but it seems to me that a $10,000+ bike might need another category than 'high end' I mean... I don't race professionally. Or race at all. Can we say that $2000 is high end for those of us mortals?

    And for the sake of my own vanity can we keep 'Walmart Mongoose' as Low End?? I started mountain biking on one of those and my bike is a Cadillac compared to that level.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Here's the thing, bikes range in price all the way up to over $10,000 now. Google tells me that the OP's bike (Giant Talon 2) is $749.99 brand new. His bike is in the bottom 10% of the range, so that counts as low end. If that's all he can afford right now then so be it, but to say it's opposite of low end is totally inaccurate. No jab at what he can afford right now, because I was there at one time too, but call it what it is. It's not a good place to do upgrades, IMO. Save that money for something more, even if it takes awhile, and even if it's gently used.

  65. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    I see what you are saying... but it seems to me that a $10,000+ bike might need another category than 'high end' :-) I mean... I don't race professionally. Or race at all. Can we say that $2000 is high end for those of us mortals?
    Sorry man, but $2000 for a complete bike is not high end for enthusiasts. It's still in the bottom half of the bell curve. Many frames cost more than that. This is not a judgement. You can still have a blast on a lower end bike, which is all that matters.

    BTW, participating in a race isn't a valid measurement of one's commitment to this sport. Most of the enthusiasts I know shred hard but couldn't care less about racing.

    Skip the upgrades. Save up for something really nice. Aim high.

    Edit: Your bike is indeed a step up from a Walmart mongoose.

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    I think what passes as "low end" these days is incredibly good. My $550 marlin is way better than my old "high end" hardtails from the early 2000's.

    As long as you can toss in a tapered fork, its good to go.

    I think its fair to say that mid level starts with boost bikes. "High end" just has to do with component spec, but its mechanically the same as the mid level stuff. You can turn a mid level bike high end, but low end stays low end... but I still think low end is very good. The 5k+ bikes all had straight head tubes and 135 rear ends not that long ago.

  67. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    Can we say that $2000 is high end for those of us mortals?
    And for the sake of my own vanity can we keep 'Walmart Mongoose' as Low End??
    Seems reasonable.
    I think that considering skipping upgrades and saving for a bike within that range is also reasonable, but no one can be as familiar with your priorities as you are!

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    i think i still disagree. carbon full suspension bikes with carbon wheels and electronic gears skew the curve making it nonsensical. i could show you bikes over $40000... does that make the $10000 low end? No, it makes the 40k one insane.

    i define high/low end by quality, not by price really. A light weight aluminium hardtail frame or better, with modern features, specced with anything over SLX is "high end" in my book. That's the point where performance gains become extremely marginal for their price. Right now, that puts you in around $1500-$2000us. The talon would be middle. Its the entry model in giants range of "serious" mountain bikes.

    Semantics aside, what your saying is akin to "don't spend $50k renovating that $200000 house, save up and buy a million dollar house instead". Its just not applicable unless you have all that money on hand to burn. (hes got "a few hundred")

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    All sorts of good advice around here.

    If your frame is up to the task, go ahead and upgrade. If not, bite the bullet and get something newer, but pre-owned.

    I bought my new (to me) Specialized Fuse Comp and saved about $700 over buying new, not to mention about $160 in sales tax had I bought it new at the LBS.


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    i'm selling a cannondale 29er with a reba...

    /me runs

    haha

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    I was originally going to purchase a entry level HT last year which I was looking into Trek Marlin's and such... nothing too crazy to get my feet wet into the sport. I ended up broadening my horizons with more information I got from this forum and youtube to make sure I get a good investment out of whatever I was/am trying to do. Within the course of the 8 months since I started my journey I've learned a hella-lot about bikes as a whole and understand both sized of the spectrum when it comes to low-end vs mid-lvl vs high end and then there are budgetary constraints.

    Since he already has the bike and wishes to upgraded certain components it would be wise to upgrade (not massively) the fork for continued riding within the sport... it's a given that the use he will put onto the bike will negate the need of a dropper within this year and from all the info he has gotten here would begin to save that money (after the purchase of a decent fork) towards a better well thought out future investment which won't be an upgrade towards the Talon 2 but rather something new.

    I went balls to the wall when it came to my bike, some people here think I'm insane or strange that starting out in this sport I got a Carbon XC-ish bike @ nearly 6K and still continued upgrading it because, well, I can and I felt like it. Some know my background with my impending need (itch) to mod things so, to me it's of no surprise... I then later purchased two more bikes (in hopes to create a family event) one for my wife and my daughter thus moderately upgrading those two as well... ended up trying to sell one (still on sale) and making my wife's bike into another bike for me... modding that one to hell too... just because I can...

    Follow what your budget allows... I say upgraded just the fork now... ride and have fun with the bike while you're doing that save up for something you really want and want to grow with.
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    I assure you, we didnt all just crash recklessly before droppers were invented.
    No kidding, right?

    Long before droppers, we just slid off the back of the saddle. And we never stopped mid ride to adjust seat height. It was common to point our bikes down with our stomachs resting on the saddle. I say "was"... heck, I still do that today. I rode that way so for so many years that making that move is still subconscious for me. And I can probably get into that position just as fast as activating the dropper trigger. What's funny is I sometimes slide back even when I do drop the post because I want more of my weight further over the rear wheel. Especially when things get near vertical like they did on one TTF just yesterday. To be perfectly honest, I drop my seat more after rides when I'm putzing around the parking lot visiting and want to be able to plant my feet on the ground without leaving the saddle.

    Forget the dropper... slide off the back. There's nothing like the thrill of risking "package meets rear tire"!
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredcook View Post
    It was common to point our bikes down with our stomachs resting on the saddle.
    Was more common to just not ride down some of the stuff I'm willing to ride down with a dropper today.

    Forget the dropper... slide off the back. There's nothing like the thrill of risking "package meets rear tire"!
    Have you ever seen someone bend a syncros hardcore seatpost forward? I have... :P

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by smashysmashy View Post
    i think i still disagree. carbon full suspension bikes with carbon wheels and electronic gears skew the curve making it nonsensical. i could show you bikes over $40000... does that make the $10000 low end? No, it makes the 40k one insane.

    i define high/low end by quality, not by price really. A light weight aluminium hardtail frame or better, with modern features, specced with anything over SLX is "high end" in my book. That's the point where performance gains become extremely marginal for their price. Right now, that puts you in around $1500-$2000us. The talon would be middle. Its the entry model in giants range of "serious" mountain bikes.

    Semantics aside, what your saying is akin to "don't spend $50k renovating that $200000 house, save up and buy a million dollar house instead". Its just not applicable unless you have all that money on hand to burn. (hes got "a few hundred")
    A modern carbon full suspension bike with good components will FAR outperform an aluminum hardtail with SLX. It's not at all marginal gains. It's massive gains, at least on demanding trails.

    The house analogy doesn't quite work because putting $50K into a $200K house will increase the value of that house, so you can (likely) sell it later and make a profit. Putting money into your bike is just money spent. A better analogy would be spending a lot of money to mod your entry level Honda Civic. It doesn't make financial sense at all, but lo and behold people do it anyway. You could put $30K into modding your Civic and still no one would consider it a high end car.

    Anyway, I've said my piece. It's the OP's money and if he wants to spend it on upgrades then he's going to regardless of what I think about it. I hope he ends up happy either way.

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    Hey I have a Giant Talon 2 with 2.8" tires and the stock Suntour XCM HLO (spring) forks. I have a few hundred dollars to invest in an upgrade. I'm still new with only one season under my belt and I ride in Northern Wisconsin. With my budget to consider... what would I get the most out of? Upgrading to the Suntour Raidon air fork or putting in a dropper post??!! Just looking for opinions!
    Saving up for a better bike might be a wiser move if you see yourself being into this long term. As mentioned you can hone your ability within the limits of what you have now and resolve both the dropper and fork issue along with considerable improvement to other items as well, with something like a later model Fathom.

    Took me 2 years to upgrade from a 20 year old 26Ē Giant to a new 29Ē Fathom. It was worth the wait to get what I am enjoying now.

    Pretty good choices in what you seem to be moving toward:
    https://www.giant-bicycles.com/us/bikes-fathom-2020

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    I assure you, we didnt all just crash recklessly before droppers were invented.

    The only thing a dropper does is save you the hassle of stopping to lower your seat. That IS a big hassle, but its not impossible to stop and lower your seat. I did it for 10 years.

    It is impossible to make a crappy fork actually work. It wont work for 100% of your ride, and theres no getting around that. Those cheap suntours literally have no damping. Not poor damping, but *no* damping. Just wild knocking and bucking. They're really not even safe for mountain biking.
    Actually, Iíd argue there was a good deal more crashing before droppers, myself included. Iíve always been one to lower my seat at the top of any significant descent. But it was the times where youíd say ďnah, itís not worth it because Iím just going to be climbing again in a few minutesĒ that caught people off guard.

    But hey, make your own choices. I prefer to minimize my chances of becoming a quadriplegic.

  77. #77
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    No hyperbole in this thread. None whatsoever.
    The revolution starts now
    When you rise above your fear
    And tear the walls around you down
    The revolution starts here

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattiThundrrr View Post
    No hyperbole in this thread. None whatsoever.
    That's only cause your on the wrong side

    Now go buy a dropper and get back to us... :P

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by smashysmashy View Post
    That's only cause your on the wrong side

    Now go buy a dropper and get back to us... :P
    Certainly. Right after you try a coil shock with no damping.
    The revolution starts now
    When you rise above your fear
    And tear the walls around you down
    The revolution starts here

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattiThundrrr View Post
    Certainly. Right after you try a coil shock with no damping.
    Hey, my gt avalanche came with a suntour XCT - one down from what he has.... I replaced it with a carbon rigid fork :P

  81. #81
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    Exactly. Rigid is safer than a coil spring without damping. You upgraded.
    The revolution starts now
    When you rise above your fear
    And tear the walls around you down
    The revolution starts here

  82. #82
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    Not reading the whole thread, will just offer some anecdotal evidence. My buddies wife, who rides with us regularly on her '18 StumpJumper, said she'd "never need a dropper, ever." Buddy installed a PNW dropper he was going to put on his new Jeffsy on her SJ. Now she's done a complete 180* regarding needing/wanting a dropper.

    For me a dropper is essential. I love to ride the trails local to me, but I also love to hit our big jump line (then climb back up to the top of the roll-in). Droppers, IMO, are one of the best things about modern MTB's.
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  83. #83
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    I read about the benefits, saw it in actions then put it into practice... it is a marvel. I'd still recommend a fork over a dropper on that specific frame being that there is a budget in place.
    2019 Ibis DV9 XX1 Gold | Code RSC | 25.4lbs
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    Damn this turned out to be an active post. Well I definitely listened to those who said 'no upgrade' but I still think it's worth putting on a better fork if I can keep the cost down below what it would take me to upgrade to at least the next better model. I can do that with a fork.. so I'm gonna do it and the thing I dislike the most about my bike will be gone. I found a great deal on an Epixon. It might also be worth still putting on a dropper later this season when I have some more disposable income. With these changes... I think it's wise to draw the line.

    (By the way... my wife and I ride the same size frame and she has a dropper post.. so I will get plenty of time to play with one in the meantime)

  85. #85
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    I've done both upgrades on my Talon 2. I did the fork after owner the bike about a month. It was night and day different. I saved a pound easily off the front end, raised the Epixon up to 120mm a travel and got a slightly slacker HT angle. The fork does take some maintenance, but nothing hard at all.

    I put a PNW 150mm dropper on my bike last month. Amazing change to my ridding. But it wasn't anything that I couldn't do with a QR seat clamp. It just meant I could do it more often and on the fly.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattiThundrrr View Post
    Exactly. Rigid is safer than a coil spring without damping. You upgraded.
    Agree entirely.

    People are talking about jump lines and tech descending... thats not happening with an undamped pogo stick up front. Its scary, and out of control in the literal sense. Pogo forks lose their footing on anything much rougher than a gravel path. A rigid fork truly is an upgrade.

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    I'm glad to hear that you went to 120mm as that is what I did.. but wasn't completely sure I could (I think it just means that the Epixon I ordered was placed into 120mm mode at the factory.. and I can change it if I want??). Can you explain what the significance of the change in HT angle is?

    Anyway... happy to read this post!

    Oh yeah.... Did you install the fork yourself? Did anything have to be modified or did it go right on?



    Quote Originally Posted by NorCal_In_AZ View Post
    I've done both upgrades on my Talon 2. I did the fork after owner the bike about a month. It was night and day different. I saved a pound easily off the front end, raised the Epixon up to 120mm a travel and got a slightly slacker HT angle. The fork does take some maintenance, but nothing hard at all.

    I put a PNW 150mm dropper on my bike last month. Amazing change to my ridding. But it wasn't anything that I couldn't do with a QR seat clamp. It just meant I could do it more often and on the fly.

  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by mossanimal View Post
    I'm glad to hear that you went to 120mm as that is what I did.. but wasn't completely sure I could (I think it just means that the Epixon I ordered was placed into 120mm mode at the factory.. and I can change it if I want??). Can you explain what the significance of the change in HT angle is?

    Anyway... happy to read this post!

    Oh yeah.... Did you install the fork yourself? Did anything have to be modified or did it go right on?
    Yes I installed the fork myself. However Iím very mechanically inclined, so it was pretty easy for me.

    When you get your new fork the following things need to be done...
    1. Remove the crown race from the old fork and install it on the new. It comes off easily enough with gentle prying, but to install it needs to be hammered or pressed into place. So you need a tube (like PVC) to drive it on.
    2. The steerer tube will need to be cut to length. A hack saw works, but the cut needs to be square and then you need to file the inside and outside of the tube.
    3. Youíll get a new star nut for inside the new fork. But it wonít be installed. I put mine in without buying the special tool, but for the next one, Iíll buy the tool.

    Again it wasnít hard for me, but if that sounds confusing to you, take it to a shop. Remove the old fork, take it and the new fork to a shop. They should be able to get your new fork all setup in under 30mins for a nominal fee.

    Other than that, nothing needed to be modified for it to fit.

    HT Angle is the angle your forks sit at compare to level ground. The slacker the angle, (less then 90 and closer to 0) the more your front wheel will stick out in front of the bike. When you point the bike downhill, the HT angle becomes steeper (closer back to 90) this allows you the rider to keep your weight back on the bike easier and not out over the front axle.

    Iím sorry if I concusses you in this, I should have not even mentioned it earlier. By going from 100mm of travel to 120mm, I gained about .5-1 degree of HT angle. Not major, but the first ride on the new fork I felt the change.

  89. #89
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    Great. Sounds easy. I'm pretty handy with tools (former full time blacksmith/bladesmith) and my place of employment has a machine shop with some pretty technical dudes.

    I looked up the HT angle after you posted and it all makes sense now. Glad to hear I might get some geometry benefit out of the change.

    Quote Originally Posted by NorCal_In_AZ View Post
    Yes I installed the fork myself. However Iím very mechanically inclined, so it was pretty easy for me.

    When you get your new fork the following things need to be done...
    1. Remove the crown race from the old fork and install it on the new. It comes off easily enough with gentle prying, but to install it needs to be hammered or pressed into place. So you need a tube (like PVC) to drive it on.
    2. The steerer tube will need to be cut to length. A hack saw works, but the cut needs to be square and then you need to file the inside and outside of the tube.
    3. Youíll get a new star nut for inside the new fork. But it wonít be installed. I put mine in without buying the special tool, but for the next one, Iíll buy the tool.

    Again it wasnít hard for me, but if that sounds confusing to you, take it to a shop. Remove the old fork, take it and the new fork to a shop. They should be able to get your new fork all setup in under 30mins for a nominal fee.

    Other than that, nothing needed to be modified for it to fit.

    HT Angle is the angle your forks sit at compare to level ground. The slacker the angle, (less then 90 and closer to 0) the more your front wheel will stick out in front of the bike. When you point the bike downhill, the HT angle becomes steeper (closer back to 90) this allows you the rider to keep your weight back on the bike easier and not out over the front axle.

    Iím sorry if I concusses you in this, I should have not even mentioned it earlier. By going from 100mm of travel to 120mm, I gained about .5-1 degree of HT angle. Not major, but the first ride on the new fork I felt the change.

  90. #90
    Nat
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    Park Tools makes the correct tools for the fork exchange. You could make do with regular tools but the right tools makes every step easier, especially the crown race installation. I made my own headset press several years ago and it worked fine but now I have the Park version. Maybe the most important thing is to make sure you don't cut the steerer tube too short.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9xF1Vt00bA

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