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Help me pick an entry level suspension fork

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hello Head-Fiers. Please forgive me if I use the wrong terminology, as I am not very knowledgeable about biking. I am looking to upgrade my suspension fork in my bike, as the current one that came stock is pretty terrible and has lost a lot of its "stiffness". I would like to keep it as cheap as possible. Pretty much any fork will be an upgrade over what I have now. I will be riding this on dirt, gravel, and pavement. Maybe some simple XC type stuff but no crazy singletrack or big drops..

My bike is not the best but I am satisfied with it for now. I can't upgrade the frame/other components. With budget forks I know I will not be getting anything amazing. I just want something that will not bottom out on me constantly like my current fork does now, and will last a couple years until I can upgrade the entire bike.

Here are my requirements:
- must be compatible with V-brakes
- must have a lockout

I'm looking at RockShox Tora 302 U-Turn, and a RockShox Tora SL SE. Would these work? What about air vs. spring? Please let me know if you need more info from me. Thanks, and I'm looking forward to some great advice!
post #2 of 9
Suspension Fork-fi.

I like it.
post #3 of 9
There is a bicycle-fi thread. It has been active for years. Try a post over there. Good luck with your purchase. BTW This week end 51 degrees in Baltimore. Maybe I will pull out the bike
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
I wish it was that warm over here.. In a couple weeks I'm heading out to the east coast for spring break. I hope it's still that warm!

I was going to post in the bike thread but it's full of lots of hardcore bikers that I have a feeling will just tell me to buy a new bike or get disc brakes or something.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Bump?
post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by intoflatlines View Post
I was going to post in the bike thread but it's full of lots of hardcore bikers that I have a feeling will just tell me to buy a new bike or get disc brakes or something.
No they won't.
post #7 of 9
Checkout pricepoint.com for bargains.

I'm not a big MTBer but I do some. I'm more of a cyclocrosser/roadie/singlespeeder. Something you might consider is a rigid fork. It's cheap, lighter, and no maintenance. If you want suspension, you get a bigger tire, say a 2.1 or whatever you can fit. It's a trip back to old school for sure but it's still fun (IMHO). Doesn't sound like you need a suspension for your kind of riding.

I used to have this bike which had a little bit of rear suspension w/ the elastomer but now I have a full rigid singlespeed Santa Cruz Chameleon with a Surly 1x1 front fork. The fork can fit V brakes and disc. You could then go with bike equivalent of a mullet, called a 69er. 29" wheel up front and 26" wheel in back. There's advantages to it, you can google for more info.

It's a different ride that requires you to be more judicious when picking your line. You also earn more 'man' credits at the end of the day at the bar when you forego the suspension. I've used this bike on singletrack, washboard trails, etc. Climbing and descending is VERY fun.

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the tips. I checked out that site and found a good number of forks I'm considering but I need some more help narrowing it down! Here's the list:

2009 Rockshox Dart 3 Post W/Poploc Black 100mm at Price Point $139.98, includes Poploc remote.

Rockshox Dart 3 2010 at Price Point $195.98, includes free headset. Might or might not include "Poploc" remote as shown in picture but not explicitly in description..

Marzocchi 33 TST2 2009 at Price Point $209.98,

Rockshox Tora Trail 302 2010 at Price Point $240.98

Rockshox Tora Trail 302 U-Turn XLoc 2010 at Price Point $274.98, includes free headset but again unsure about Poploc remote

Rockshox Tora 318 U-Turn 2010 at Price Point $294.98, includes free headset

Which of these would you pick? I'm confused about different model years and exactly how they're different, and also the different types of "Tora". Also, I'd appreciate any more help I could get on this!
post #9 of 9
STAY AWAY FROM THE RS DART!!!!! PLEASE! that fork is a piece of crap.

Id recommend the Tora at the least. It has the motion control damper in it, a huge step above the dart's open bath dampening. The motion control will have rebound, and low speed compression control on the outside of the fork.

After working as a mechanic for 2 year, RS is still my favorite to work on. simple to take apart, easy to find replacement parts, yet they have all the features most riders need.

feel free to pm with any more questions.

--ekl
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