Replacing fork on Trek 4300- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    New question here. Replacing fork on Trek 4300

    Hello all,
    Somewhat new to the forums. I have a Trek 4300 which I really love. I should have waited one more month to save up a little more to get the 4500 though because the front fork can be a little annoying. I would like to upgrade the front fork to a Rock Shox. I saw two Judy models on pricepoint for $100 and $150. I am really looking to get rid of the bouncy feeling from the front. My questions are:
    A. Is there any thing I should know before I purchase? Sizes or what not?
    B. Is the install as straightforward as it looks?
    C. Are these forks worth the upgrade or should I save a little more.

    I am not dropping off boulders or really doing any downhilling. I mostly ride my bike to and form work (I am a teacher, so I have to keep it in my classroom LOL). Some light trail riding and riding around the horrible roads in my small country town (a lot og gravel, worn asphault, nothign smooth or nice).

  2. #2
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    Buy a maintenance book. While replacement isn't rocket science(your size headtube is likely 1 1/8inch) you have to make sure you do it right and writing it all here is a pain.

  3. #3
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    Since that is your answer, can you recommend a good maintenance book? Perhaps then I can avoid asking questions altogether to help you avoid any pain.

    How about opinions on the forks? Will that be in the book?

  4. #4
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    24601,

    I have a 4500 and my wife has a 4300, so I've rode both of them. I'm new to MTB, so take what I say knowing that I don't know what I'm talking about.

    In my opinion, and FOR ME the two models ride over bumps about the same. I'm fairly light and while the RST fork on the 4300 is not as stiff as the judy TT that comes with the 4500, the real benifit with the 4500 is the slightly better components in the drive line and the wheels.

    OK, so what am i trying to advise you? If you get the Judy TT forks, you will probably not be happy with them for very long. The TT is not an oil filled shock so an upgrade in the forks that will make a real difference will have to be better than the judy TT. Unless you can find a used TT fork fairly cheap and upgrade the insides with a retro air shock, i think your upgrade dollars would be better spent elseware.

    Your bike is nice the way it is. If you haven't already upgraded the pedals, either clipless or at least toe clips, do this first.

    Tom
    Volunteer Firefighter/EMT SAR.

  5. #5
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    ...wait a few months

    You say you should have waited and got the 4500...

    I say wait and get a better fork than the Judy TT. That fork is probably not much different than what is on there...the TT is a low end, entry level fork.

    Save some $, do some research and get a good quality fork you can use for years and not have to upgrade in a year.

  6. #6
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    Thanks, those are great answers. How about the Psylo? Isn't that one aorund $250? Would that be a good model to shoot for?

    I do better saving money when I can have a specific goal.

    I did upgrade my pedals. I actually got what is kindof a BMX freestyle platform pedal. Because I ride to work everyday I needed something that would keep my feet from slipping in a variety of conditions and shoes. The brand is Primo, not sure of model name (at home).

  7. #7
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    I have a 2002 Psylo XC

    Quote Originally Posted by 24601
    Thanks, those are great answers. How about the Psylo? Isn't that one aorund $250? Would that be a good model to shoot for?

    I do better saving money when I can have a specific goal.

    I did upgrade my pedals. I actually got what is kindof a BMX freestyle platform pedal. Because I ride to work everyday I needed something that would keep my feet from slipping in a variety of conditions and shoes. The brand is Primo, not sure of model name (at home).
    I have a 2001 Judy C on a hardtail (very similar to Judy TT) which has stood up remarkably. I also have a 2002 Psylo XC. There is a big difference. The Psylo is a much more solid fork from my experience. I ride mostly aggressive x-country. I guess a drawback to this fork would be it's weight and another usual complaint is that it is very soft or undersprung. But based on the riding you say you do, no big deal.

    The Psylo is a fork you would never really need to upgrade out of necessity. I replaced the stock seals with Enduro Seals because they were leaking after a couple years. Also, depending on your wieght you may need to upgrade to stiffer springs. I am 200 lbs and upgraded to the 'blue' springs.

    But the Psylo is a good choice in my opinion if you have Rock Shox on your mind. There are many others out there, but I don't know much about Fox or Marzocchi products.

  8. #8
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    Research,research, there are some great deals out there now.

    Did I say research?

    Do it!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jkittlesen
    Research,research, there are some great deals out there now.

    Did I say research?

    Do it!

    LOL, that's what this is!

    Believe me, I am reading every site out there.

    BTW--I am saying Rock Shox just because I am more familiar with that brand so far and so it is easier for me to compare up and down their line then across manufacturers.

  10. #10
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    I just noticed by clicking on that little link that the Psylo doesn't have the v-brake mounts stock. I wonder how hard that is to fit on. It says they can be added, but I don't really get that part.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by 24601
    Hello all,
    Somewhat new to the forums. I have a Trek 4300 which I really love. I should have waited one more month to save up a little more to get the 4500 though because the front fork can be a little annoying. I would like to upgrade the front fork to a Rock Shox. I saw two Judy models on pricepoint for $100 and $150. I am really looking to get rid of the bouncy feeling from the front. My questions are:
    A. Is there any thing I should know before I purchase? Sizes or what not?
    B. Is the install as straightforward as it looks?
    C. Are these forks worth the upgrade or should I save a little more.

    I am not dropping off boulders or really doing any downhilling. I mostly ride my bike to and form work (I am a teacher, so I have to keep it in my classroom LOL). Some light trail riding and riding around the horrible roads in my small country town (a lot og gravel, worn asphault, nothign smooth or nice).
    NOOOO!!! DON'T GET A JUDY! It's a waste of money.

    www.nashbar.com has Manitou Axel Elite on sale for $119. Even that's better than a Judy. At least it has some actual dampening and rebound adjust. Better yet, if you can afford $179, get a Marzocchi MX Comp from Jenson USA: http://www.jensonusa.com/search/?s=marzocchi+04

    The Manitou can adjust travel from 80 to 100mm. The Marz is 85mm travel.

    A. Check to see if the steer tube on the fork is long enough. This usually won't be a problem with new forks but if you buy used off ebay or something, it's important to check. I don't think the steer tube diameter is an issue, since it's usually 1 1/8" but I don't know Trek. Some older bikes have 1" I think, and some freeride/DH are 1 1/2".

    B. Depends on what you mean by straightforward. Get this book if you want to do the installation yourself. Otherwise, places charge something like $40 for fork installation (obviously not always the same from shop to shop.)

    C. No! Don't waste your money on Judys. The Manitou Axel Elite might improve your ride with rebound adjust and oil dampening. But Judy TT is probably no better than what you have and I don't expect Judy XC or SL to be much better.

    I would just say that it might not be worth the money to upgrade at all. It might just be better to hold out a while and get a new bike.
    BLOG: http://dirtyrubber.blogspot.com
    Latest entry: 06-13-2005 Annadel Ride

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lighty_
    I would just say that it might not be worth the money to upgrade at all. It might just be better to hold out a while and get a new bike.

    Excellent info, thanks. The only thing that is bothing me at this point is the fork. When I get on it is feels bouncy and mushy. That is the reason I am only looking to upgrade that part. I sure can't get a better bike worth upgrading to for even 3x what a fork would cost, so I am basically looking at a fork, got the pedals, maybe bar ends, and that is it until I get my Fuel 90 next yearish. A teacher salary makes it hard to get a good bike, but I am selling a few things from my old hobby (RC cars) to get a fork.

  13. #13
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    ...right

    Quote Originally Posted by 24601
    I just noticed by clicking on that little link that the Psylo doesn't have the v-brake mounts stock. I wonder how hard that is to fit on. It says they can be added, but I don't really get that part.
    That's right. They don't...you'd have to have someone weld on brake bosses. Not worth the hassle. I think the Duke has v-brake bosses. The Duke is more X-country fork than the Psylo I think. It is a solid fork too.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by chomp
    That's right. They don't...you'd have to have someone weld on brake bosses. Not worth the hassle. I think the Duke has v-brake bosses. The Duke is more X-country fork than the Psylo I think. It is a solid fork too.
    SInce you mentioned it, can you help me understand more some of these terms:

    Cross country
    Free ride
    single track
    Downhill I figured out!
    cyclocross

    any more I need to know.

    What is it if I want to ride trails and stuff but not jump off anything tall because I am scared?

  15. #15
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    my defintions...

    Quote Originally Posted by 24601
    SInce you mentioned it, can you help me understand more some of these terms:

    Cross country
    Free ride
    single track
    Downhill I figured out!
    cyclocross

    any more I need to know.

    What is it if I want to ride trails and stuff but not jump off anything tall because I am scared?
    X-country -- fire, forest access roads including double and single track trails, can range from non-technical (flat, simple, obstacle free) to very technical (hilly, obstacles, phyically demanding)

    Free Ride -- jumps, stunts and stuff.

    Single Track -- riding on a single line trail

    Cyclocross -- not really sure

  16. #16
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    Guess I am a non-technical x-country kind of guy.

    Thanks for all the help here.

  17. #17
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    BLOG: http://dirtyrubber.blogspot.com
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  18. #18
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    keep in mind that fork travel affects the geometry of your bike. your trek was probably designed for about 80mm of travel, so you should probably stick to around 80-100mm of travel. a lot of forks now are coming in 130mm or so, and that would be overkill on you trek.
    Marz MX Comp, RS Pilot or Duke, Manitou Skareb or Axel would all be okay forks

  19. #19
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    Ohh. Selfish and lazy. Good combination. Look for Zinn's book since your too lazy to do a search. It's a good one and will serve you well.

    When and if you learn to do the bike maintenance thing you'll realize that it takes way too much time to get it all down right and that's without pictures smartass. So while you may get a general idea(you need 1 1/8inched sized steerertube-yer welcome ingrate) you may end up without a few key elements which could possibly ruin your fork and waste lots of hard earned cash. So go for it lazy butt and don't forget to get the tension correct between the topcap and headset. Wouldn't want to replace that now would we.

    Once you get the book and then don't quite understand something that's the time to ask questions. Good luck numbnuts.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by fred?
    Ohh. Selfish and lazy. Good combination. Look for Zinn's book since your too lazy to do a search. It's a good one and will serve you well.

    When and if you learn to do the bike maintenance thing you'll realize that it takes way too much time to get it all down right and that's without pictures smartass. So while you may get a general idea(you need 1 1/8inched sized steerertube-yer welcome ingrate) you may end up without a few key elements which could possibly ruin your fork and waste lots of hard earned cash. So go for it lazy butt and don't forget to get the tension correct between the topcap and headset. Wouldn't want to replace that now would we.

    Once you get the book and then don't quite understand something that's the time to ask questions. Good luck numbnuts.
    OK, I am new to this forum, but not forums. Your type is everywhere. You are some hardcore nut who only wants hardcore nuts to ask or answer anything on "his" forum. If you don't like these types of questions, don't answer them. Move on, stay out of the beginner forum. I did a ton of research both before and after I asked. I will continue to. I thought I would throw out the question to see if I got some similiar responses to what my research was showing. I could read where one guy did it no problem but not reealize because this is the internet he has years of experience. That is why I asked in the "BEGINNER FORUM"! I am no ingrate or smartass, that was you with your first and this response. I didn't see a rule when I signed up that said read Fred's favorite book first. GO fall off a cliff while the other people here work to help each other. Guys like you ruin a hobby for newcomers.

    YOu know, you could have said, "replacing a fork is a big job if you are new to the hobby. I could explain it here but chances are you would still probably not get it, not to mention that there are specific tools you probably won't have. Best bet is to let the LBS handle the install, but if you are still dead set on it you will need to get a mainenance book that can guide you along the way. I recommend___________."

    See, wouldn't that have gotten the point across so much better? Try education instead of attitude. I'm going to talk to the grownups now.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by bacchanal
    keep in mind that fork travel affects the geometry of your bike. your trek was probably designed for about 80mm of travel, so you should probably stick to around 80-100mm of travel. a lot of forks now are coming in 130mm or so, and that would be overkill on you trek.
    Marz MX Comp, RS Pilot or Duke, Manitou Skareb or Axel would all be okay forks
    Thanks, I will keep that in mind.

  22. #22
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    I just got the Marzocchi Mx Comp ( 85 mm travel )for about 175 bucks delivered from Jenson USA. I have a Trek 4300 myself and this mod has made a tremendous difference. If you have the cash, I would also recommend upgrading the wheelset-----depending on the hub choice, you can get a set of Sun Rhyno Lites for 80-120 bucks from Jenson or Pricepoint. Also, get a shorter stem ( a Jamis OE stem from Jenson will run you another 10 clams ) like a 10 degree 90 mm model, and upgrade to a new rear derailleur. I made these modifications myself and now I have a very solid trailbike for about an investment of $650 total. Of course, I would not suggest downhill, or extreme freeride with this setup---but you will have a great ride for singletrack and some minor dirtjumps. Good luck and happy riding.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by 24601
    OK, I am new to this forum, but not forums. Your type is everywhere. You are some hardcore nut who only wants hardcore nuts to ask or answer anything on "his" forum. If you don't like these types of questions, don't answer them. Move on, stay out of the beginner forum. I did a ton of research both before and after I asked. I will continue to. I thought I would throw out the question to see if I got some similiar responses to what my research was showing. I could read where one guy did it no problem but not reealize because this is the internet he has years of experience. That is why I asked in the "BEGINNER FORUM"! I am no ingrate or smartass, that was you with your first and this response. I didn't see a rule when I signed up that said read Fred's favorite book first. GO fall off a cliff while the other people here work to help each other. Guys like you ruin a hobby for newcomers.

    YOu know, you could have said, "replacing a fork is a big job if you are new to the hobby. I could explain it here but chances are you would still probably not get it, not to mention that there are specific tools you probably won't have. Best bet is to let the LBS handle the install, but if you are still dead set on it you will need to get a mainenance book that can guide you along the way. I recommend___________."

    See, wouldn't that have gotten the point across so much better? Try education instead of attitude. I'm going to talk to the grownups now.
    Wow, you catch on fast, and that is a good assessment too....

    *most* of the folks here are very helpful, a few seem to be inpatient. (Don't worry, I did not see the rule that said beginners can't post on the beginner forum either.

    My $0.02 is that unless you are very mechanically inclined, it is a difficult-enough job that you should not go into it alone. Either get an experienced buddy to help you out, or use your LBS.

    The Duke XC (62-108mm) might be a good one to look at, and you can find a deal for around $200-225.

    Resources:
    Book: Zinn
    Website: www.parktool.com or www.sheldonbrown.com


    Good luck, and let us know how it goes....


    Oh yeah, if you don't mind holding out for a while, the advice to look at a bike upgrade is not that bad. You're talking $200 for a fork, or $500-700 for a really nice bike....

  24. #24
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    I had a Fuel 80 and had a Duke XC U-Turn put on. It worked quite well. It really is a pretty involved process, and I wouldn't do it myself, but if you have some good mechanical skills, and an LBS to help you out of you get into a jam, then go for it. I can handle the basics, install and adjust fd and rd, change chains, install brakes, true wheels, etc. But installing a fork with the star nut and all, is a bit of a different animal. I'm pretty sure you need some fairly specialized tools. Anyhow, whatever you decide, Zinn and the Art of Moutainbike Maintenance is a must have for your library. I've learned LOTS from that book. You can find it online for 15-20 bucks. Also the Sheldon Brown and Park Tools sites are excellent.

    As for Fred, pay him no heed. For the most part, the Beginner Forum is a supportive informative place, and most folks will bend over backwards to help you out. Sometimes, there is one crusty old curmudgeon who just has to put their 2 cents worth in. Don't let it put you off, his bark is worse than his bite

    BTW, my fist bike was a 4300 and I loved it. Enjoy the rides!!

  25. #25
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    Well, definitely going to look into the book and the forks recommended. I think I might wait just a little before getting it as I am getting some new road tires (did research and feel good about getting the Vredestein S-Licks). I am also looking at bar ends, leaning toward the cane creek ones that lock on the ends with thier grips. After that I will look toward the fork, maybe a Christmas present to me!

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