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  1. #1
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    Any experience with eBay susp forks(LUTU / PASAK)

    Hey there guys!

    I'm toying with the idea of swapping the fork out on my Charge Cooker with one of the eBay Chinese suspension forks that range from 115-200 clams. They all seem to be the same thing basically, fitting a 4.0 tire with compression between 120-135.

    Does anyone have any personal experience with them? I don't expect them to be great but would be pleasantly surprised if they weren't terribad. I cheap out on my dropper posts and they have all held up well so I've got my fingers crossed that the forks will follow suit.

    Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for your time!

  2. #2
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    In doing this for many years, I've regretted a few suspension fork purchases. IME, a rigid fork is better than a poorly performing suspension fork. A suspension fork is meant to take impacts at varying speeds, which means it needs a certain level of sophistication to deal with high and low shaft-speed impacts, blow-offs, needle adjusters, etc. Without this, there is only a narrow speed range where it is effective and then it becomes worse than having a rigid fork outside of that range due to the uncontrolled nature.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  3. #3
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    Hi there Jayem, thanks very much for your thoughts!

    My speed range is incredibly limited with that bike, it's all in the slow side of the gauge. It's the first time I rode a rigid bike and although I was expecting a rough ride, I was shocked at the times that roots(we have tons, they are huge and in networks) would literally take my feet off the pedals and try to take the grips out of my hands. That's the only reason I started looking into it.

    My big concern about the fork was the additional weight. The bike is already incredibly heavy. I worry about making it up the hills around me after adding more pounds to it.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schwim Dandy View Post
    Hi there Jayem, thanks very much for your thoughts!

    My speed range is incredibly limited with that bike, it's all in the slow side of the gauge. It's the first time I rode a rigid bike and although I was expecting a rough ride, I was shocked at the times that roots(we have tons, they are huge and in networks) would literally take my feet off the pedals and try to take the grips out of my hands. That's the only reason I started looking into it.

    My big concern about the fork was the additional weight. The bike is already incredibly heavy. I worry about making it up the hills around me after adding more pounds to it.
    For one, riding a hardtail or a rigid will make obvious any failures of technique you might have. So if your feet come off the pedals (assuming platform pedals), you might want to look at your pedaling technique to ensure your feet stay planted. Also look at your shoe/pedal combo, because if you're using some less-grippy option, the rigid fatbike is going to make that extremely obvious.

    Examining your tire pressures is probably worthwhile, too. On my fatbike, I dropped my usual tire pressures due to the trails & terrain in WNC. And maybe I ought to think about dropping them a little more.

    Finally, installing any suspension fork will add POUNDS to the weight of the bike compared to a rigid fork. A cheap suspension fork is going to be pounds heavier than a good suspension fork, so it's a worthwhile consideration. And like Jayem said, the cheaper you go on the fork, you're going to lose a LOT of sophistication that will limit the range of conditions the fork needs to handle. And if there's anything we have here in WNC, it's a range of conditions.

    I use a Wren fork on my Bucksaw in WNC. I bought it before the Manitou was available, and the Wren/FOMN was really the only option at the time that had properly burly chassis. For the way I ride my bike (it's just a mtb to me, and I hit all kinds of stuff with it), the Bluto wasn't enough. Black Mtn Trail ruined me on the Bluto, because the fork flexed so much that it lost a lot of air and I had to stop and reinflate it halfway down the descent. The Wren fork isn't perfect - it's 1lb heavier than the Bluto, and the damper isn't quite as good - but the increased stiffness handles my riding much better.

    I just wouldn't bother with cheap suspension here unless you never took the bike on anything more difficult than the gravel roads. The singletrack is demanding enough that bad suspension will be a more of a liability than a rigid fork.

  5. #5
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    Thanks very much for your help, Harold, I appreciate it!

    You and I are in the same area so you know exactly what I'm dealing with. I tried to keep a crouched/bent knees, spongy posture but rolling downhills and hitting a network of roots hidden under leaf litter that are as much as 3 inches tall is going to wreak havoc on you regardless the posture or grip.

    I think I desperately need to start playing with air pressures and slowing my roll so as not to hit something like that at a speed in which I'm not capable of getting through without either pinchflatting or taking a tumble. I guess that's just going to be part of the charm of running a rigid. I shouldn't expect a complete lack of negatives when making a move like this.

    I'll give the forks a miss. I ordered a cheap carbon bar and some ergo grips, so hopefully that will take some of the shock out of the hands and I'll just need to be more mindful of the other end.

    Thanks again for your help!

  6. #6
    turtles make me hot
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    Have you ever tried a 4.8" tire on the front of your bike? My fat bike is rigid with 4.8's on 80mm rims and I honestly feel no need for suspension. I hammer techy trails with roots and rocks. As long as the pressure is right, It's pretty good.
    I also have swept bars and silicone foam grips. Every little bit helps.
    I like turtles

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by NYrr496 View Post
    Have you ever tried a 4.8" tire on the front of your bike? My fat bike is rigid with 4.8's on 80mm rims and I honestly feel no need for suspension. I hammer techy trails with roots and rocks. As long as the pressure is right, It's pretty good.
    I also have swept bars and silicone foam grips. Every little bit helps.
    I have not yet. Can I ask what pressure you're running and if tubes, what type of tube? People have suggested running a 20" tube in my tires to lighten it up a little bit.

  8. #8
    since 4/10/2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schwim Dandy View Post
    Thanks very much for your help, Harold, I appreciate it!

    You and I are in the same area so you know exactly what I'm dealing with. I tried to keep a crouched/bent knees, spongy posture but rolling downhills and hitting a network of roots hidden under leaf litter that are as much as 3 inches tall is going to wreak havoc on you regardless the posture or grip.

    I think I desperately need to start playing with air pressures and slowing my roll so as not to hit something like that at a speed in which I'm not capable of getting through without either pinchflatting or taking a tumble. I guess that's just going to be part of the charm of running a rigid. I shouldn't expect a complete lack of negatives when making a move like this.

    I'll give the forks a miss. I ordered a cheap carbon bar and some ergo grips, so hopefully that will take some of the shock out of the hands and I'll just need to be more mindful of the other end.

    Thanks again for your help!
    Yeah, with a rigid bike, regardless of tire size, you can't just smash the spicy terrain. You're going to have to ride with some finesse. Get your wheels up when you approach stuff like that so you can lessen the impacts a bit. I'm always looking for ways to get a little pop and float over the gnarled root sections when I can. And if not, finding the better path through them. Plenty of times when I miss the best line and have to go again or walk through (especially when I'm already exhausted).

    Cheap carbon bars are also a no-no. Way too many questions about quality/safety. Further, carbon does not automatically mean shock absorption. Nor do ergo grips. I've had high end carbon bars in the past that were EXTREMELY stiff. I wrecked recently, and got some deep gouges/scoring on those bars and had to retire them. I replaced with a quality alu bar and am happy with it. But even with suspension, some of the downhills are so fast and chattery that there are really only two ways to smooth them out - get a ton of air over the chunky stuff, or slow down. IMO, Green's Lick is one of the worst in that department. It's not terribly difficult, but it's very fast with lots of small chatter if you really let 'er rip. It's even moreso when the best lines are hidden in fresh leaf litter. RevGrips are supposed to help with that kind of stuff some, but I've not jumped in on those so I can't give my own impressions.

  9. #9
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    I dont suggest buying a cheap fork. If you're getting one spend the money on one that works properly and weighs less than the off brands.

    If your feet are coming off the pedals in rough terrain consider clipping in. I rode my fat bike with flats and 510s once before my new pedals came in and it wasnt fun trying to stay on the pedals in rough terrain. Went clipless and would never go back, even all winter long. Still dont know how people can ride with flats. I wasnt a beleiver until I tried them and crushed some personal records 1st day out.

  10. #10
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    buy a used Bluto or Renegade for hardly any more $ than this junk
    Mike
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    2016 Scott Solace 10 Disc

  11. #11
    turtles make me hot
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schwim Dandy View Post
    I have not yet. Can I ask what pressure you're running and if tubes, what type of tube? People have suggested running a 20" tube in my tires to lighten it up a little bit.
    I run a Surly Bud tubeless at about 7-8 psi. I weight 265.
    I like turtles

  12. #12
    Rollin' a fatty Moderator
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    Save your coin or invest on a quality carbon or used Bluto or Renegade. Those pogo sticks are boat anchors.

    A 4.8 tire will also take some of the heat but you need to find the PSI that works for you regardless of tubed or tubeless.

  13. #13
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    if you are looking for lighter tube option, the best choice i have found is the 26x2.5-3 or something like that from Specialized. it is a Down hill tire tube but it works great even in 4.8 tires. they also weigh like half of what a fat bike tube does.

    As for pressure, the easiest way to get close is to hold your front brake and push down on the front tire. let air out until the tire sidewall just starts to wrinkle (you will know it when you see it). then ad like 1 psi back in. set the back tire to 2-3 lbs more than the front.

    Suspension is really only need if you are going really fast over rough bigger hits. roots and small bumps are not eliminated by a suspension fork. proper tire pressure will do way more on small bumps. Stay with the rigid fork and if anything go to a more supple tire, that will help in the root and small bump department.

    Last thing, buy a good low pressure gauge, as pressure is key in fat bikes.

  14. #14
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    Thanks so much for the help! I have one quick question, would a standard 26 MTB tube work in a 4.0 tire? I carry a slime tube with me and thought it should work to get me out of the woods when I pinch or puncture one of the equipped tubes.

  15. #15
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    Yes they do. I originally started using Sunlite 2.3-2.6 x 26 tubes to get rolling, years ago. Now I've got them as back-ups in my bag.

    Be honest with yourself and riding conditions. Don't try to use an ultra lightweight tube meant for max 1.8" tires and then go bashing through chunk and prickers. Standard tubes meant for mid-upper 2.x will work just fine.

  16. #16
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    Holy crap, it was the tire pressure. I continued lowering the pressure until the contact patch wanted to continue going straight when I wanted to turn at higher speeds and then stopped there. The ride was fantastic. No more old man wiggling biceps and foot-off-pedal excitement on the rough stuff. Just an all around fantastic ride with smiles from start to finish.

    This has become my all-year ride, no fork necessary. Thank you all so much for the help!

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schwim Dandy View Post
    Holy crap, it was the tire pressure. I continued lowering the pressure until the contact patch wanted to continue going straight when I wanted to turn at higher speeds and then stopped there. The ride was fantastic. No more old man wiggling biceps and foot-off-pedal excitement on the rough stuff. Just an all around fantastic ride with smiles from start to finish.

    This has become my all-year ride, no fork necessary. Thank you all so much for the help!
    Itís not *that* hard to find the right psi, but too low and itís squirmy and you can really feel it bogging under pedaling. Itís dynamic though based on conditions, the softer the snow, the lower this pressure is. Too high and itís rough and you donít get as much traction.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  18. #18
    since 4/10/2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    Itís not *that* hard to find the right psi, but too low and itís squirmy and you can really feel it bogging under pedaling. Itís dynamic though based on conditions, the softer the snow, the lower this pressure is. Too high and itís rough and you donít get as much traction.
    can't forget to mention that the pressure at which a tire bogs down and begins to self steer will vary from one tire to the next. here in Pisgah, rim strikes are a real risk in the warmer, faster conditions. OP will want to keep an eye on that, because it may encourage him to raise tire pressures a bit to avoid it.

    consequently, people using more standard tire widths are adopting products like cushcore and huck norris and whatnot pretty widely. I'd hate to know how much cushcore would weigh if it fit a fatbike tire/rim. thankfully we don't have many sharp things to slash sidewalls, so that's a lower risk. if it was, I'm sure I would have hung up the fatbike almost as soon as I moved here.

  19. #19
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    Hi,
    New UK member here. Have been a lurker for a while and have gained lots of advice about my Fat Bike build so I thought I would throw my hat into the ring. I have recently built myself a Fat Bike for winter to save my enduro from self destructing, so found a second hand Mongoose Argus sport and only kept the frame and wheels and kitted it out for the kind of muddy trail riding we do in North Yorkshire in the winter. I initially built it up with the rigid fork but after a few jumps and landings my wrists were telling me that I needed a suspension fork, but as I was new to the whole fatbiking thing and as the argus has quick release hubs I thought I would chance my arm with a cheap LUTU air fork. It was £150 with postage, weighs 1.8kg with 120mm of travel. It's pretty basic but I have to say 3 months in it's pretty good. It takes the pain out of landings and gives me a bit of comfort on the trails. We will see how long it lasts and how easy it is to service. It only fits a 4.0 Tyre but that's OK for what I need. Anyway here's a picture (and the type of mud we contend with on our winter night rides!!)

  20. #20
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    I had a pair of Pasak forks on my Voodoo Wazoo. While they worked they were great. I was running them with 4.6" Ground Control tyres.

    I've a busted shoulder so the extra 90/100mm travel was very handy, more comfortable & the higher front end suited me better. Unfortunately they only lasted about a year though. My mate stripped them down force at his shop & found the insides had turned to much, water proof seals had failed or he reckons had been non existent in the first place.

    That said a few others on the various Wazoo Facebook pages bought them & have had no issues with them at all. I've not long upgraded frame to a Ritchey Commando & I find myself looking at forks again but doubt id buy so cheap again. I did have my eye on some RST Renegades until reading another thread on these forums tonight.

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