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 Post subject: Forks
PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2007 9:07 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 12:15 am
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Location: North Yorkshire
Marzocchi XC R's


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2007 11:38 pm 
BoTY Winner
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Russell wrote:
I don't know when you started riding, Suspension wasn't available when I started riding either but thats largely irrelevant. This guys talking about 1991, which for the purpose of this thread is therefore 'BITD' and in 1991, manufacturers were offering suspension forks as an option on their bikes. Want an example? Check out this link to a '91 Orange catalogue http://www.indiansummer.ch/orange_1991_brochure.pdf you could have your bike with rigid forks or Rockshox, same frame, no geometry correction. In 1992, Kona http://www.konaretro.com/articles/catal ... 2Page4.jpg offered the 'Future Shock' fork as an option on higher end frames, same frames as rigid designs, no geometry correction.I can't be bothered to go looking for more examples but I'm sure that there are a few.


Mid to late 80's. Come early 90's, I don't doubt there were companies offering suspension options as you've proven so. We didn't sell Orange here in the States...and by 92, thats several years worth of suspension production and innovation within the mtb industry.


Russell wrote:
So we should all ditch our cantilever brakes or thumbshifters aswell, because modern designs are more efficient should we?


I don't know about you, but the thumbshifters and (some) of the cantilever brakes I have work just about as good as any modern trigger shifters and v-brakes out there.

In 1992 I put a Mag20 on my non-suspension corrected 90/91 Stumpy. Blew out the seals in less than a season, went back to rigid.
Of all the 'vintage' or older suspension forks I've tried, I've not been impressed. I ran full rigid up until...1999-2000 or so.
I've gone through a lot of vintage mtbs and a lot of vintage mtb suspension forks...My negativity towards them is just my personal experience.

Russell wrote:
Nobody said he was going to slap a pair of dual crowns on his bike. Whats wrong with a '91 frame, with a set of '91/'92 forks up front?


Nothing wrong with it at all.
If it is/was going to be an actively used trail bike though...the added weight, poor performance, and lack of reliability of those old forks would not be something I'd want to deal with.
If he's doing it for novelty/cool factor, then have at it.

I make mention of the longer travel fork based on they types of builds I've seen on the bikes posted here (seems to be a general UK trend). Modern parts and forks hung on older frames.

Perhaps I'm spoiled by my modern suspension and a retro grouch when it comes to my vintage builds.


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 Post subject: Servicability
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 7:10 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Location: North Yorkshire
I must admit in the early days, service intervals were pretty frequent and elastomers offered the most reliability and ease of service, if dubious effective performance.
Scaled down designs, mostly from MX/trials had dodgy seals and coud be flexy.
Marzocchi were probably the first to offer a reliable spring/oil bath range. But they still had to be serviced regularly. Back then Fork Boots were a must to keep things clean and smooth.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 9:48 am 
Devout Dirtbag

Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2007 1:31 pm
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The first range of forks I was impressed with was the Marzocchi bomber range of the mid to late 90s. I had a set for 5 years, and they worked flawlessly without ever being serviced. Downside was that they were pretty heavy.


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 Post subject: to be or not to be !
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 10:25 am 
Gold Trader
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what is wrong with all you guys ? of course he should fit suspension forks, they should be of the same period and short travel. like rc35s they wont effect the geometry that much, half the bikes on here from 90-92ish would have been retro fitted with a set of sus forks on the front, mag 20s rc35s. i believe at one point pace forks were only available as an upgrade, they were designed to replace rigid forks ! i kind of know what you are saying but customising your bike to the way you want it is most important. f**K everyone else!. if its a really early model then yes leave it alone if its early 90s yes fit the forks, a flite, a use seatpost, etc etc etc


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 Post subject: Forks
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 4:11 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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What year did the Girvin beam cantilever forks first appear on a Proflex?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 4:29 pm 
Devout Dirtbag
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Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2007 9:53 pm
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Location: Derbyshire
Listen guys, i don't want anyone fallin out over this...it was an innocent question. I agree with both sides....those that want to .....'keep it real' and the .....'tweaking' types amongst us!

It just goes to show everyone is different and that's what makes the forum so interesting. I suppose i could always straighten the forks in the gulley outside my house, just like i did with my 'tracker' bike BITD....now that was waayyyyyy b4 MTB's were on the scene - cowhorns, fixed wheel and westrix wheels (i think they were called that)...the works!

Maybe if i straigten them i could go FULL retro and have myself a 'tracker' again.... :lol:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 5:11 pm 
Devout Dirtbag

Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2006 9:37 pm
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I suspect there are a couple of reasons folks in the UK ride older frames with newer forks Rumfy - these are my guesses/personal opinions:

- The weather. If you actually want to ride an old frame with sussy forks as opposed to keep in a garage to look at, the mud will eat through a set of older forks every winter. With a smaller number in the UK than USA originally, and far more worn out after a few seasons use than in the dusty hotbeds of US MTBing (I know its not all like that!) there are relatively few left for us to buy in decent condition and we're not likely to want to kill them next winter.

- Discs. Again related to weather, as a student b4 discs I was getting through a rear rim every winter and front every two. Discs work better in poor conditions and work out cheaper in the long run.

A decent set of 80mm forks like bombers allows discs, last for ages, and don't upset the handling of an early mid nineties (92-95 say) frame too much if at all. They can slow down twitchy frames too. Plenty of people run similar on Bontragers etc (I do) as first bikes i.e about riding first and retroness second. I'm slowly being tempted in to the world of fully retro bikes but for me a nice BITD frame with appropriate modern bits still seems pretty retro compared to most production bikes today.

In fact, if I could have the perfect fork for my (probably suspension corrected bonty race lite) it would be retro geometry (60-70mm travel), bomber or Pace reliable, light, with disc mounts, and take a reasonable sized tyre. Came close with a Pace Airforce 2 fork, 63mm travel, light, discs, but a small 2.1 like a conti explorer with low knobs buzzes the crown at full travel - eek!

Another issue for me is cost of new frames vs retro - I picked up my bonty for £400 as a complete bike with nice bits, it's a well made frame from fairly bitd for far less than a new equivalent quality frame/bike.

Wow thats long and again hope no-one is offended, just my take and I think really it's entirely up to you! Should retro mean just the stock components on a bike, or the nicest bits from that year, or a few years after - as that's what most people do, buy a bike/frame and upgrade bits year on year, or even old frame/new bits? For me retro can be all of these...

Ian


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 Post subject: Retro
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 6:24 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Couldn't agree more, on all points! I much prefer a quality steel/Ti hard tail, which are thin on the ground these days, without spending mega bucks.
Not sure on the Disc issue, no question about all the benefits, but the big downside, still remains the weight in all the wrong places and the cost.
Sure you can go light with discs, but the costs!!! Add a top light Disc wheelset, Titanium rotors and a light top quality caliper/lever combo and your well into £1000 plus.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 10:29 pm 
Gold Trader
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Location: Scotland!!!!!! Yay, at last, only 4 years waiting!
Well now you lot, there's plenty of different opinion on here, so now for my input. I actually agree with pretty much everyone. The important thing is what is right for you. If you enjoy the bike, and love riding it then do what ever you want!

My personal opinion is that you should be more careful fitting suspension to the older frames due to the geometry issues, don't get rid of your rigids in case you hate it, hell you can always sell the forks on here if you change your mind!

I would err towards forks of the same or similar era because of geometry too, and let's face it, at the end of the day retro suspension forks may not be the "best" performers, but I reckon half that old bitd stuff we all drool over won't be the "best" performers either!!

If it feels good do it, if it doesn't, put it back

And guys, go get a beer and chill out!


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