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Old 10-02-07, 12:13 AM   #1
tarmenel
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Shock Comparison

Here we go again you may be saying but hopefully i can ask this in a more open way. I would like to know how shocks compare to each other, or let me restate that.. What are the levels of shocks by manufacturer. I would like to invest in something good but I am unsure where to start not knowing the technicalities of front shock's. I would just like to know the various levels so I can go and read up on the same sort of shock by the different manufacturers and then decide based on reviews and comfort of trying them out.
1) Are there any manufacturers other than Rock Shox, Marzocchi and Fox that I should be paying attention to?
2) Does anyone have a link where I can see the various levels, like XT = X.9 for deraileurs?
I'm looking at it from a cross country racing point of view.
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Old 10-02-07, 01:43 AM   #2
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Here are my opinion about fork / shock I've tried based on : quality of material, performance, and durability.
Top class : Pace/DT Swiss, Magura, Fox,
High class : Rockshox, Manitou, Marzocchi, White Brother
Mid class : Sr Suntour, Spinner, X-Fusion
Low class : RST (2007 ver., dunno the 08), Zoom

But one thing you should pay attention, choose the one that's been supported by your LBS ... just in case you have trouble, you can ask them quickly.
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Old 10-02-07, 03:04 AM   #3
tarmenel
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As I said I was not asking for a list of what you thought were the best forks but rather what manufacturers were worth looking into as ggb pointed out. Based on that I went to the various websites to see what they had under XC, which is what I'm interested in. So here is a list of possibilities, now I can't go by price when comparing these because that would be a bit silly when trying to compare between the manufacturers. I'm not asking for exacts but rather grouping the various forks into their relative levels, e.g. is the White Brothers Magic in the same league as the Fox F-Series or does it lean more towards the Fox Talas. So heres the list so help in grouping them would be really helpful.

Marzocchi
---------
XC 700 ATA
XC 600 ATA2
XC 600 TST2
XC 500 ETA

Fox
----
F-Series
Float
Talas

White Brothers
---------------
Magic 80
Magic 100

Rock Shox
----------
Recon
Tora
Reba
SID
Dart

Magura
-------
Laurin MX100XC
Laurin MX85XC
Durin MD80R

Manitou
-------
R Seven
Relic
Axel

Now all I want to do is group these by the quality, obviously this would resemble the differences in price but does that mean a top of the range Fox is the same as the White Brothers flagship?
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Old 10-02-07, 03:31 AM   #4
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Now all I want to do is group these by the quality, obviously this would resemble the differences in price but does that mean a top of the range Fox is the same as the White Brothers flagship?
No, in an ideal world that might be true, but things are never simple

A lot of people are religious about their brands, so asking about brands is usually fruitless. Example: One of my friends rides on Fox forks. I was looking at a bike with a Rock Shox Reba SL and he was like "dude, Rock Shox sucks. Don't buy Rock Shox!" Everyone else I talked to and all the reviews I read made it out to be a great fork (I didn't buy the bike so I don't know).

If you're looking at Fox though, I know their F-series is great for XC (I have one and it's schweet... although by no means am I saying "BUY FOX"). I know nothing about White Brothers. The best way to answer your question regarding quality is to check out http://www.mtbr.com ... you can get a very good idea of the quality on any specific part by spending some time reading reviews. This is how I spec'ed out my most recent bike, and it really paid off.

I like MTBR for a couple of reasons
1) You get a lot more second opinions than what a magazine review gives you
2) Most of the user reviews are very honest while many magazines usually skirt around the negatives

Anyway, be sure to check that out. If you see that nobody has reviewed a White Brothers fork and it's super cheap for a supposedly similar feature set to what other much more expensive forks offer, then I would keep looking You get what you pay for.

And ultimately, nothing answers a question better than personal experience. So if your friend has a fork you're looking at, borrow his bike for a day and see how it rides. Or if you can get test rides going at a local bike shop, do it!
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Old 10-02-07, 03:40 AM   #5
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I see the dilemma when it comes to brands but is there no way to group these by their various specifications. By consensus from hear-say I gather that the SRAM X.0 is the equivalent offered by Shimano's XTR, so is there no way in finding out a similar line for the forks. I'm don't want to know whether Fox is better than Marzocchi but is the Fox FSeries in the same line as the XC 700 ATA? I did the whole price comparison using Jenson for what was available as suggested but like I thought the prices don't really group the various components but it is rather the name of the Manufacturer. They had the RockShox SID at the top in a league all by itself then the Reba, FSeries and even Recon on the same price line??
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Old 10-02-07, 04:08 AM   #6
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Oh I see... I think what you are trying to do is impossible then. Or at least overly OCD if you do figure it out! Lines will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, and there is often no direct comparison between them.

Forks are a bit different from drivetrains anyway, because there are a lot more companies making forks than there are making MTB drivetrains. Shimano vs SRAM are the two companies in the drivetrain arena. They match each others' offerings 1:1 because they are in cut-throat competition. With forks, there are a lot more players in the arena, all with varied offerings, and not necessarily intended to match each competitor's lines directly. Does that make any sense? It's getting late.

Good luck with what you're trying to do. And if you do figure it out you should do a full write up. In my honest opinion, it's not worth the effort.
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Old 10-02-07, 05:54 AM   #7
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Well this is what I've got after trawling through the reviews. First thing is that you should stay away from the Marz XC anything but I have added it anyway as a comparison on what the company is trying to offer.

So here we go, please give some feed back as I'd like to hear what you have to say if you use any of these forks:

Level 1
-------
Manitou R7
Rock Shox SID
Fox FSeries
Magura Durin

Level 2
-------
Rock Shox Reba
Rock Shox Recon
Magura Laurin
Fox Float
Marzoncchi XC700
White Brothers Magic
Manitou Relic

Level 3
-------
Rock Shox Tora
Fox Talas
Marzocchi XC600
Manitou Axel

So anyone thinking that I should bump any of these up or down please let me know why. Know back to the researching to find one perfectly suited to me.
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Old 10-02-07, 10:19 AM   #8
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Based on my experience (as weekend warrior and racing sometimes) ....

For XC, Rockshox Reba or Manitou R7 ...
For AM/Trail, Fox Talas or Magura Wotan....
For DH/Freeride, Marzocchi DH line-up

That's all....

Tried it 1st, if possible, then you decide .... R7 or Reba will make your day ...

Cheers mate.
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Old 10-02-07, 11:54 AM   #9
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So anyone thinking that I should bump any of these up or down please let me know why. Know back to the researching to find one perfectly suited to me.

First figure out how much you can/want to spend. Then determine what type of riding you'll be doing and how much travel you want. Then decide if you want air or coil. After those steps, you list should be more condensed and your choice should be easier.
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Old 10-02-07, 12:19 PM   #10
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Quoted from the SRAM/RS site... "2-Step Air combines a Solo Air system with a hydraulic travel adjuster".

As for the U-Turn, one reviewer said, "Its slow, can't be done easily on the fly and means you have to stop to use it. I won't bother looking for this feature again." Whether or not one should take his word for it is questionable. I'm sure an additional 5 minutes of research would've yielded some interesting info.

Happy, Pete? What else may I assist you with? Perhaps I can photoshop those "jumping" photos you posted a few days ago to make it look like your riding buds jumped higher than 2 feet.
The 2-step is good if you want to hit certain travel settings. The U-turn is nice because you can crank it to whatever travel you want. I wouldn't say one is better than the other, they just serve slightly different purposes.
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Old 10-02-07, 12:33 PM   #11
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Why can't we all just get along?
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Old 10-02-07, 12:52 PM   #12
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http://www.mtbr.com/reviews/2008_forks/

http://www.mtbr.com/reviews/2007_forks/
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Old 10-02-07, 12:59 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by tarmenel View Post
Well this is what I've got after trawling through the reviews. First thing is that you should stay away from the Marz XC anything but I have added it anyway as a comparison on what the company is trying to offer.

So here we go, please give some feed back as I'd like to hear what you have to say if you use any of these forks:

Level 1
-------
Manitou R7
Rock Shox SID
Fox FSeries
Magura Durin

Level 2
-------
Rock Shox Reba
Rock Shox Recon
Magura Laurin
Fox Float
Marzoncchi XC700
White Brothers Magic
Manitou Relic

Level 3
-------
Rock Shox Tora
Fox Talas
Marzocchi XC600
Manitou Axel

So anyone thinking that I should bump any of these up or down please let me know why. Know back to the researching to find one perfectly suited to me.
In my experience, the white brothers magic forks are pretty much the best you can get. On par performance wise with the Fox. I'd bump them up to level one. I'd bump down manipoo to level 3 based on what I have heard on the intrawebs (j/k)
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Old 10-02-07, 02:04 PM   #14
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you two have successfully derailled this entire thread with your bickering. i hope you're proud.
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Old 10-02-07, 03:06 PM   #15
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That's all you've got?

The fact that the 2-step has coil-like performance with air adjustability and light weight are meaningless?

And infinite travel adjustment is way better than 2-position adjustment? I guess those of us with fixed travel forks are just plain screwed huh?
What the hell are you talking about? Neither is better than the other (you're the only one who said one was better than the other), it can only be decided by the rider and their needs. The main reason price differs is likely because of production costs. Just because it's more expensive doesn't mean it's a superior product for someone who doesn't need the feature(s).
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Old 10-02-07, 04:07 PM   #16
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You and your riding buddies SUCK.
Indeed. I'm sure Pete is one of the worst riders to post here on the forums. He is also completely lacking in technical knowledge.
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Old 10-02-07, 05:05 PM   #17
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If Rockshox offered to give you a free Lyrik, would you honestly choose the U-turn over the 2-step?
Depends on which bike...but likely if RS offered me a free fork, I'd go for something else...

But really, why are you getting so excited with the fact that some people may choose a u-turn Lyric over a 2-step Lyric? Don't you ride a late 90's Bontrager hardtail? You shouldn't be looking at the Lyric...it'll likely be overkill for that bike, even with the 2-step in use.
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Old 10-02-07, 05:22 PM   #18
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you know Zumba, you should really ask yourself if you would have defended the "2 Step > U turn" statement if it wasn't attacked and simply pointed out? I think often in these forums we confuse defending a point with defending our egos? It might not have been subtle, but I think Pete has a point
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Old 10-02-07, 05:22 PM   #19
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Hey BenLi, why did you delete your post?
it was faulty, it made an assumption that U-turns were all coil
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Old 10-02-07, 05:38 PM   #20
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You say that sarcastically, but it's not too far from the truth. His knowledge is superficial, but deep enough to impress some of the slackjawed yokels that frequent this subforum.
I could swear that you were the one that copied his avatar. But please share your credentials with us, since you obviously know much more than the rest of us. Where does your experience come from?
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Old 10-02-07, 05:48 PM   #21
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...you crazy fount of technical knowledge you!
Actually,it's 'font of knowledge' . . . fount is OK too, but font is the preferred.
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Old 10-02-07, 06:01 PM   #22
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Pay attention.

I was typing in British.
Man, some of you guys are smart.....and some are dumber than a bag of hammers.
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Old 10-02-07, 06:44 PM   #23
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I was a captain in the Army before becoming a Bay Area police detective (can't disclose which precinct, sorry).

These days I'm investigating Pete Fagerlin. He's a prime suspect in a case involving kiddie porn. Remember that pic he posted a few days ago with a bunch of 10 year olds all over a Scott bike in Pete's garage? WTF was that? Evidence.
So what you're saying is that you're off your meds again. By the way, the reason idiots like you don't get banned is because you provide so much comic relief.
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Old 10-02-07, 06:48 PM   #24
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Well I'm glad that I amuse you so much.
Not many people have accomplished as much as you in only 27 years.
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Old 10-02-07, 06:57 PM   #25
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Pete, he's ex-military, a cop, and he knows a heck of a lot about mountain bikes (but not Sean Connery*). I suspect that he's a huge fan of James Thurber as well.


*Subtle movie reference.
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