'09 Talas36 vs. Totem vs. 66- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    '09 Talas36 vs. Totem vs. 66

    This is a question that will eventually arise year after year, which fork to buy? Here are my parameters. I will be moving to Korea soon. Therefore reliability is going to be paramount. I have pretty much nixed any air only fork, except maybe the talas36. That being said. Has anyone been able to get the 411 on the '09 Totems; are they still weepy i.e. leaky? What about the marzocchi 66s, I am thinking rc3 not ATA. I know the question is redundant but I can't afford to be stuck out east without a solid rig. I know we are only in February, but time is not a luxury for me.

  2. #2
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    http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=493980

    2/3 of your question right there. didnt even have to search. right there on the front page.

  3. #3
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    It's his first post. No need to hammer the search function thing on him...

    The 36 really isn't in the same category of the Totem and 66. Fox currently doesn't offer a 180mm single crown so you have to evaluate how you want your bike to handle between the 36 and the 2 others. There's about a 20mm difference in axel to crown. 36's are 545mm, Totem and 66 forks are around 565mm. That will easily translate into a 1 degree or more difference in headtube angle and a bit higher/lower BB height.

    Sooo, I'll give my 2 cents on the matter. Currently unless I got a super good deal on a 66, I wouldn't buy one. If you can find an older model (06,07) that's like new, get it. The current models have been plagued with QC issues. That leaves the Totem. Like you've noticed, the early models were leaky and had some cartridge issues. AFAIK most of these problems have been minimized. I don't know anyone with an 09 right now, but honestly haven't heard or read anything to steer me away from one.

    My debate right now personally is what 36 to get for a 6.5 inch bike I have in the works. Do I go Talas, Float, or Van? Float's super light, but will I like the air spring or miss the travel adjust of the Talas. The Vanilla's coil, but do I want my bike super light?

    Decisions, decisions...
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  4. #4
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    CO-IL, CO-IL, CO-IL!!!

    Getting my totems changed to Coil, the Solo Air is good, but for the first time started leaking on me at a DH race on the wk end, gutted. This is my second pair, and the first were flawless. Anyway's, for DH coil is just so much more composed, air was not meant for the hard hitting bumps of DH, they just can't keep up!

    Still, the Totem has still been the best fork i've ever used, hands down.
    Its All Downhill From Here....!

  5. #5
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    Uncle Cliffy - worth a read

    http://dirtmag.co.uk/tests/fox-forks...-float-and-van

    I find the floats are awesome and easy to tune being air for super plush or super stiff dependant on what your doing...
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  6. #6
    biking is fun
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    I think the most important thing for you to tell us is....

    WHAT BIKE IS IT GOING ON?

  7. #7
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    i'm assuming this is going on a longer travel bike.....

    in my experience, if u are going for a 36 then the 36 van is the more reliable of the fox line....the 36 van rc2 will give u all the adjustments u need and is a nice ride

    between the totem and the 66, uncle cliffy is correct, if u are leaning towards the 66 then purchase the older models from '07....but for ease of rebuilding and customer support/warranty, then the totem is the way to go.....very very easy to work on them yourself and if it's something u feel needs a warranty then sram is pretty quick at getting u back up and running...that being said, the major issues seem to be resolved

    if you're worried about being in korea and not being able to get parts for whichever fork u choose, then simply buy a set of wipers/seals, a rebuild kit, and oil before u head there

    my choice would be the totem coil....they have ironed out the major problems of the earlier models, they are very easy to work on, customer support/service is very good (if needed), it performs very well....it would be my choice even over the '07 66
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  8. #8
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    I have 2007 66 RC2X, it has been an amazing rock steady performer. If you can find one new, it would be a steal as well! Easy to work on yourself if you ever had to. Solid axle clamp, open bath system, proven performer!
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by derekr
    Uncle Cliffy - worth a read

    http://dirtmag.co.uk/tests/fox-forks...-float-and-van

    I find the floats are awesome and easy to tune being air for super plush or super stiff dependant on what your doing...
    Thanks man. Leave it to Steve Jones to cut to the chase. (I just re-upped my Dirt subscription... )
    Quote Originally Posted by kidwoo
    The internet sounds like a tough place to ride.

  10. #10
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    Ease of rebuilding..... yeh, my ridden twice Totem air needs some love already, leaking oil from the top of the right leg.

  11. #11
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    Where abouts you moving to? I am down south so just curious. I sold my Patriot66 and invested in a hartail before moving for the same reasons you asking about forks - reliability. I didnt want the hassle of a rear shock in a country that has limited servicing.
    Well I will give you some inside info and tell you that the riding is insane out here and I ended up bringing in a Wildcard frame. I was lucky enough to get a new Van 36 RC2 localy for the price of a Domain, so it wasnt even worth thinking about which fork to get for me. However my old 66 would have been golden on the Wildcard. I kept my domain for the hardtail and will be a great back up for the Wildcard if needed. I believe the Domain is a brilliant fork especialy for ease of DIY. I also brought my pike with for the hardtail but kept popping the lip seal in the compresion dial thingy and ended up fixing that and putting it up on ebay.
    I brought some oil over and am busy putting a order in for some seals for both forks. I think you have the right idea about durability for Korea. There is a solid expat riding community but everyone is stuck with shipping in parts. Shimano and Sram components are available, some rims and wheels and even forks and frames etc but you will pay a fair bit more. I managed to bring in some spares when I flew in but I am busy putting an order to gether for CRC a few sets of tyres, kenda being one of the only tyre choices and a bit limited on range, some wheels and other bits which I hope will last a year to 2. Smaller items like chains brake pads etc you can just pick up here.
    Good luck
    I just want to ride.

  12. #12
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    If you don't need the DH lean of the Totem or 66, get the Fox Float 36. Tough enough for moderate DH use. Super reliable. Minimal stuff to go wrong by avoiding the travel adjust. Totems and late-model 66s are sketchy.

  13. #13
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    Thanks to all for your input.

    Thanks guys for your input. I probably wasn't clear but I meant this thread to be about reliability; specifically about QC improvements for '09.
    As for my rig; '03 Bullit. 36 pounds of do-all-anything. Just looking for the right fork. 36's or totem coil is where I am now leaning. Yeah, it's a pig, but I'm 215 lbs of hairy-dicked Clydesdale. So I figure its a good match. Its the rider not the rig...and just keep telling myself that all the way up the wall...besides I've learned never to bring anything abroad I can't afford to lose.
    Uncle Cliffy, Pipes 10, Juan Pablo and the rest; thanks guys, you really helped me narrow my choices.
    Probably going totem coil plus rebuild kit plus oil plus seals X 2 = Game Plan.

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