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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:27 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed May 27, 2009 10:41 am
Posts: 637
I've got a mid-90s Saracen Kili currently with rigid forks and have just started taking it off-road a bit. Not having done any off-road stuff for about 25 years my aging body isn't really that enamoured with the rattling around its getting. According to the old catalogues it had Rockshox Judys, Manitou EFCs or Pace RC35s as options. I'm not a stickler for keeping it original as it was by all accounts one of the clearout frames never a complete bike. So how do the retro forks measure up against modern (last 5 years or so) forks. I know I need to find something with 80mm travel to suit the geomtery of the frame. Are even the current entry level Rockshox XC range better performance wise than forks from the mid 90s?


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 2:48 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 3:34 pm
Posts: 1847
Location: Launceston, Australia
I just got some manitou R7's 80mm and canti mounts (or V-brake, whichever), seem to work pretty well, arnt too expensive. The cheap RS's are...very low end (as in heavy).


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 3:16 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:23 pm
Posts: 3613
Location: Cumbria
Some early Fox F80's or Rock Shox Reba's would be a good choice in my opinion. Both light forks and available with canti mounts. 80mm of travel shouldn't upset geometry too much. Both sell for sub £100 (used). Just make sure the servicing has been kept on top of and you should be fine.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 3:18 pm 
King of the Skip Monkeys
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Joined: Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:34 pm
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Location: Moomin Valley
marzocci.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 3:25 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2012 1:31 pm
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Location: The Cave of Shame
Be aware at 80mm travel you may have to start playing around with stem lengths. Most of the forks it was designed for were of less travel than that.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 3:35 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:23 pm
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Location: Cumbria
Perhaps a Judy with speed springs? Old a-c length with improved performance over original elastomers? Certainly can't go wrong with Marzocchi's. I've serviced lots of old Z2's etc that had probably never been serviced in over a decade to find them near 'as new' inside.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 5:09 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 1:16 pm
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PACE RC35/36's or Judys. Bombers are nice but a bit on the heavy side.

:mrgreen:


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 5:54 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Fri May 01, 2009 7:11 pm
Posts: 8479
Location: Fircombe.
Any decent modern fork can have it's travel shortened by adding travel spacers, so you should be able to keep the geometry virtually the same.
With modern damping, even 70mm of travel will be magic carpet plush compared to last century's offerings.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:38 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
At risk of sounding boring... :facepalm:

You could do a lot worse than pick yourself up a decent nick RST Mozo PRO; don't be fooled by the poor report because of the entry level forks they produced at the same time and the same current offerings...

...the Mozo PRO (and Comp) came in a variety of lengths with both canti/V bosses and disk mount, in enough colours to match to most frames.

They look like a Judy but the internals are better; MCU/spring stacks in each leg and a simple air valve damper in the bottom of each leg. They are very easy to maintain and offer decent enough performance for most riding a retro bike (and it's rider) would subject them to.

I just bought a virtually mint red Mozo Pro from 'Matthews' on here and when I removed the internals so I could swap an alloy-steered crown on to it they looked like new (I was going to swap some slightly longer stanchions over as well but the originals are too good not to use!)...8)

The best thing about them is you get all this for between £30 - £40 for a really good example!

You don't really need much more on a retro, unless you're worried about 'labels...' :wink:


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 11:37 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:12 am
Posts: 1906
Location: Brizzle
+1 on marzocchi's, z2, z3 or z4 either air air or coil with 80mm or newer MX comps/pro 80mm. Some have a lockout feature (ETA). Either that or rst mozo pros 3.5, had a pair and converted to coil ( speed springs). Careful with MCU/elastomer forks as they are whether dependent (warm = soft/bouncy) and (cold = hard or rigid). If get 80mm, minus 15/20mm sag. Measure your current rigid from Axel to crown, 80mm forks are around the 425mm mark.

Hope that helps


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