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Thread: Dying breed?

  1. #1
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    Dying breed?

    Are bikes built around a 3" (80mm actually) fork becoming a thing of the past? I am building one up right now and for the heck of it, tried to figure out which other bikes are out there that are built around running an 80mm fork and struggle to find many. Perhaps a year or two ago the list would have been longer for sure.

    So is it that suspension technology is so much more advanced that why not just configure the geometry to run around a 100mm fork or is it that the market is simply going there and frame manufacturers then need to in order to keep up?

    As far as I can tell, other than hard tail riders, few bikes are optimized around an 80mm fork and bikes that even a year ago were, are now running 4" forks.

    For true XC riding and/or racing, is 80mm still good or is more (travel) just always better?

    The bikes that come to mind that are still alive running a 3" fork are the Racer-X and Rocky Mountain Element. What others?

  2. #2
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    Giant NRS

    Quote Originally Posted by FoShizzle
    Are bikes built around a 3" (80mm actually) fork becoming a thing of the past?
    The NRS series is still 80 mm and will stay in production for 2005, primarily as an XC race bike. The Trance, on the other hand, (lowest travel on the new Maestro series) has 100 mm. Your point is well taken in that there seems to be a move towards the larger travel.

    Clyde
    'If Wal-Mart sold parachutes, who would jump?' Frank Havnoonian (quoting his father) Drexel Hill Cyclery

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Call_me_Clyde
    The NRS series is still 80 mm and will stay in production for 2005, primarily as an XC race bike. The Trance, on the other hand, (lowest travel on the new Maestro series) has 100 mm. Your point is well taken in that there seems to be a move towards the larger travel.

    Clyde
    Good point...how could the NRS not have been obvious to me. I think the top of the line Fuel too is still 80mm but I could be wrong.

    I guess regardless of pros and cons, Marketing rules the world in all industries and confounds our ability to sort it out on our own........having said that, i am excited about my new build (last parts to arrive tomorrow), as I am sure if nothing else, it will force me to become a better rider since I will actually have to think about what lines I pick. I have become SO LAZY given my current main ride which is a "sofa on wheels" and while I initially tried to build up a hardtail, and just couldnt do it, the short travel rig should also make me a better rider.

    Cheers

  4. #4
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    Surly 1x1

    Is still designed around 80mm. I bent my rigid fork on a ride last week, and went looking for a bouncy fork just to try something new. There were not many choices!

    I sprang for a 80mm Zokie MX Comp. I hope it does not detract from the carvelicious, punk-rock, laughing in the face of technology vibe that my surly had delivered all these many years.

    Quote Originally Posted by FoShizzle
    Are bikes built around a 3" (80mm actually) fork becoming a thing of the past? I am building one up right now and for the heck of it, tried to figure out which other bikes are out there that are built around running an 80mm fork and struggle to find many. Perhaps a year or two ago the list would have been longer for sure.

    So is it that suspension technology is so much more advanced that why not just configure the geometry to run around a 100mm fork or is it that the market is simply going there and frame manufacturers then need to in order to keep up?

    As far as I can tell, other than hard tail riders, few bikes are optimized around an 80mm fork and bikes that even a year ago were, are now running 4" forks.

    For true XC riding and/or racing, is 80mm still good or is more (travel) just always better?

    The bikes that come to mind that are still alive running a 3" fork are the Racer-X and Rocky Mountain Element. What others?
    keep moving

  5. #5
    Loose Nut Behind d' Wheel
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    Quote Originally Posted by FoShizzle
    Are bikes built around a 3" (80mm actually) fork becoming a thing of the past? The bikes that come to mind that are still alive running a 3" fork are the Racer-X and Rocky Mountain Element. What others?
    I know the Ventana El Fuego is 3" in the rear, so presumably it's running 80mm up front. The website only lists recommended axle-crown height, not the travel.

    Kathy :^)
    Look where you want to go. This is as true in life as it is in mtbiking.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by FoShizzle

    For true XC riding and/or racing, is 80mm still good or is more (travel) just always better?

    I think 80mm will stick around, but perhaps just for high-end XC bikes. When I ran a 63mm fork in the 90s, I knew I need more travel. The fork topped out during normal XC rides and races and the travel was pretty flat. The thought that I might need more travel has never crossed my mind when riding an 80mm fork.

  7. #7
    www.derbyrims.com
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    Only race bikes now

    Superlight
    Spider
    RacerX
    Fuel
    NRS
    FSR
    etc.
    No need to carry extra travel weight around if it's not used in competitive XC racing.

    - ray

  8. #8
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    KHS 904, Turner Nitrous come to mind. The Epic was just updated this year to accomodate 4" of travel, as was the Fuel line.

    I think it's the riders who are demanding more and finding the limits of 80mm of travel that spur the travel jumps. But, look how the FS market has expanded to racers in recent years, too. It's going both ways in that regard.

  9. #9
    Do It Yourself
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    I think you can scratch the Racer-X from your list. I think they are only making the smaller sizes for 80mm and the larger sizes are all 100mm. I heard even the Titus HCR Ti hardtails were going the same way.

    When you get get a 4x4 bike that's rock solid pedalling but more controlled on the trail, why not?
    Long Live Long Rides

  10. #10
    t2p
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    Quote Originally Posted by Homebrew
    I think you can scratch the Racer-X from your list. I think they are only making the smaller sizes for 80mm and the larger sizes are all 100mm. I heard even the Titus HCR Ti hardtails were going the same way.

    When you get get a 4x4 bike that's rock solid pedalling but more controlled on the trail, why not?
    .
    a few reasons ........
    .
    one reason is the weight - increased travel generally equates to increased weight .....
    .
    and another reason - that few seem to mention - is the slow speed handling ..... increased travel brings with it a taller bike - and a higher center of gravity ..... not an issue - unless you do a signficant amount of slow speed .. tight .. technical .... riding ......
    .

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