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  1. #1
    raised by a cup of coffee
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    Rick Hunter forks

    I'm not sure if this is the right forum but I know he also builds frames, so anyway. I found somone who want to sell a fork made by him and I am wonder what would be a good price for it. I really like his designs, but I know nothing about his work. If you have any input that would be great.
    chicks love scars, and bones heal.

  2. #2
    members only crust & crumb's Avatar
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    Matt Chester used Rick Hunter forks and stems personally, and recommended Rick's work to his own customers. That's a pretty solid endorsement IMO.
    "Fixed gear ain't all tight pants and hand claps."

    -mc

  3. #3
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    Used custom forks aren't the best idea

    Unless your riding style, size, and intended application (not to mention frame geometry) closely match those of the seller, you should steer clear. A custom fork built for someone else may be TOTALLY inappropriate for you, and the consequences of a fork failure can be pretty ugly.

    In general, I don't understand why people buy used custom frames or forks that were made for someone else - I mean, honestly, you're better off buying a new production frame instead. It's going to be just as cheap or cheaper than a used custom, you can find a size that will fit just as well, since the custom frame/fork wasn't made for you, and it'll be under warranty if you break it. A used custom bike is a bad investment unless you *really* do your homework and are dealing with a trustworthy seller.

    Just as an example, I once built a custom fork for a 130 pound racer who wanted it as light as possible - full on tricked out fork, with a custom machined crown, ultra lightweight blades, etc, etc. Then a year later, someone I've never heard of calls me and says he broke one of my forks. Turns out the 130 pound XC guy sold the fork to a 220 pound dude, "in good faith". While I'm sure that the fork was fine when it was sold, it was also totally inappropriate for the 220# guy, yet that thought never crossed the the buyer or seller's mind, apparently.

    So call Rick and have him build YOU a fork. You'll be much better off, and saving a couple of bucks buying someone's random used fork might not pay off in the long run.

    -Walt

  4. #4
    Ho-Jahm Hocam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wa3lt View Post
    U
    In general, I don't understand why people buy used custom frames or forks that were made for someone else - I mean, honestly, you're better off buying a new production frame instead. It's going to be just as cheap or cheaper than a used custom, you can find a size that will fit just as well, since the custom frame/fork wasn't made for you, and it'll be under warranty if you break it. A used custom bike is a bad investment unless you *really* do your homework and are dealing with a trustworthy seller.
    Why?

    $$$$$$$$$

    I got the frame + fork in my signature for less than 1/3 of the original purchase price. It's about 1.5 cm too big for me but the French used to size bikes that way back in the day so why not? The original owner is maybe 5 or 10 lbs lighter than me, and I'm shedding pounds as the summer goes on so it seems to be working out great.
    Race-o-meter:
    Broken until next season

  5. #5
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    1.5cm too big?

    Well, like I said, if you don't care about an actual custom fit, which it sounds like you don't (and there's nothing really wrong with that - some people are happy with any bike that comes anywhere close to fitting) then it doesn't matter. But you really need to make sure that the original owner was intending to use the bike for the same stuff you are - if you're planning to go huck off 10 foot drops, or tour with 80 pounds in your panniers, or whatever, then you better make damn sure the bike is intended for that, regardless of whether it fits you or not.

    Let me rephrase what I was saying before: You do not have a custom bike, you have a handbuilt bike made for someone else. That's still pretty cool, and it'll probably work out fine. But if it doesn't, you have nobody but yourself to blame. It sounds like you could have purchased a production frame/fork that would actually have fit you _better_ than this used custom, probably for around the same price, and you would have gotten a full warranty to boot. A Hunter is definitely cooler than any off-the-rack, though.

    -Walt

  6. #6
    Ho-Jahm Hocam's Avatar
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    You're absolutely right, I could have bought an off the shelf bike 1 cm smaller that would have fit a little bit better.

    The thing is, I paid much less than a typical lugged production frame and got a fantastic paint job, high quality tubing (not just 4130) and the type of artisan craftsmanship that can only come on a custom. The frame is slightly too tall for me, but the stand over height is fine and I need a longer reach anyway. I wish I could afford a custom, but this will more than do. If I did buy a production frame I'd have an extra 1-2 cm showing on my seatpost, and a stem 1-2 cm longer, but the fit would basically be the same.
    Race-o-meter:
    Broken until next season

  7. #7
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    "fantastic paint job, high quality tubing (not just 4130) and the type of artisan craftsmanship that can only come on a custom."

    Right and your choices are your choices, pretty much sacred as far as I am concerned. However for others who haven't made up their mind, none of those things means zip to the functionality of the frame: One is just pretty; high quality tubbing is pretty meaningless unless it was designed properly for the rider, in fact since it's probably better optimized the chances of something being wrong for the secondary user are probably higher than the sellected stock frame, which afterall gets sellected from a large range of stock frames. Higher quality workmanship is often questionable. Richard Sachs, i believe, has made the point that specialization means the factory welder guy may be better than the custom welder and brazer. The Craftsman can do many interesting things, along an aesthetic and customization line, but the heritage of work in the frame is often not that big a deal.

    Just theory, your bike is going to be great! It's not as though there isn't any second hand market for custom bikes I hope!

  8. #8
    SS,29er,Fixed, Now What ? velomatt's Avatar
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    I have a custom steel fork built by some guy named Walt.
    Best damn fork I have ever owned.

  9. #9
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    Well...

    "The frame is slightly too tall for me, but the stand over height is fine and I need a longer reach anyway. I wish I could afford a custom, but this will more than do. If I did buy a production frame I'd have an extra 1-2 cm showing on my seatpost, and a stem 1-2 cm longer, but the fit would basically be the same."

    No, the fit is NOT the same. That's like saying you can ride a 56cm frame with a 100mm stem, or a 62cm frame with a 40mm stem, and everything will be fine. Fit also means putting the wheels in the right place relative to your center of gravity, depending on what sort of odd shape your body is and how you like your bike to ride. Toptube length, wheelbase, and stem length all have significant effects on how you handle/interact with the bike, and hence they are important to "fit". If you only care that you can reach the handlebars and pedals (and mount the bike) then more power to you, but that's setting the bar pretty low, IMO.

    In any case, I'm not trying to get into an argument here. Clearly you're happy with your bike and that's what matters. My original point addressed to the OP about people buying custom built forks and frames (without doing their homework) still stands, though. I would not buy the used Hunter fork without contacting Rick first to see if he thinks it's appropriate for the potential buyer.

    -Walt

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