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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 06-30-07, 08:28 AM   #1
dzinehaus
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justify the purchase of a carbon fork

Help me justify the purchase of a carbon fork (yes I am racing my bike once built). I'm thinking about buying one yet a few things are holding me back which are:

- cost
- damage rate / chipping / scratches / denting
- concerns about durability, cracking / splitting

pros to a carbon fork:

- durable (but how durable)
- lightweight
- is only double the cost of a steel fork (100$ as opposed to 50$)
- investment

cons to me buying a carbon fork:
- cost
- does not seem justifiable yet
- I have a 1" unthreaded headset and finding a all carbon 1" threadless fork without an integrated headset piece is a bit harder
- because of the above statement it also limits the interchangability for me or limits me to buying 1" threadless frames
- if it were a 1" steel or aluminum fork I would care less about hell I put the bike through.

so knowing those facts, please help me justify as to why I should or should not buy one. Why did you buy one?

Last edited by dzinehaus; 06-30-07 at 10:04 AM.
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Old 06-30-07, 02:32 PM   #2
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I'd be leery of a $100 CF fork, but that aside my Reynolds shaved exactly 1lb off my JTS over their chromoly fork.
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Old 06-30-07, 03:44 PM   #3
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92, you have given wicked advice in the past. Aside from the weight factor, is it worth it? I was looking at the nashbar carbon fork, just the road model not the cross model cause im running 105s as brakes for now. Next bike will be cantis.
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Old 06-30-07, 05:00 PM   #4
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I'm starting to really get p'oed at the fact that a 1" threadless 700c aluminum or cromoly fork is almost as expensive as a carbon fork

I think that's starting to justify it....
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Old 06-30-07, 05:14 PM   #5
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For me it was worth it. I think the bike feels significantly lighter and handles better. I can't say that it made me any faster -- could go either way -- but I definitely enjoy the way my bike rides better now.
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Old 06-30-07, 07:33 PM   #6
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im not caring about the speed, for me its more justifying cost. I have never ridden with one and the way I am with a bike makes me rethink of getting a carbon fork. I am wondering how easily carbon cracks, chips, faults etc.

I picked up a profile design semi-bladed 700c 1" threadless fork online from triathlon world
Payment by mail... so let's see how it goes... 100$ on clearance was that or the nashbar fork at 79$ hmmm maybe I should have just grabbed the nashbar.... I guess I can still cancel my order from triathlon world...
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Old 06-30-07, 07:48 PM   #7
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If it's that much of an issue just skip it. Carbon will likely be stronger than steel, it's just that steel has the chance of failing more gracefully. If the longevity of the part is up for debate well then again steel has the potential to outlast carbon. If you're not trying to set some sort of record for longest-lived cx frameset and the budget allows for it, you'll probably enjoy taking a couple pounds of the front end of your bike, along w/ all the comfort benefits (similar to steel).
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Old 06-30-07, 08:13 PM   #8
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An all carbon 1" cyclocross fork for racing? Sounds like suicidal to me.

- 1" alu shaft is okay
- 1 1/8" carbon shaft is okay
- 1" carbon shaft: make sure you're insurance covers everything

That is, if you manage to find one anyway.
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Old 06-30-07, 08:37 PM   #9
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1" all carbon racing fork for cyclocross:
reasons:
- cause right now im using 105 calipers that I already have (will later upgrade to carbon cross fork and cantis)
- have an old peugeot frame im upgrading which uses a 1 inch steerer wherein i changed the original threaded headset to a threadless (for swapping capabilities for later)
- LBS is selling the monocoq carbon fork for 175$ all in

The one I put in an order for on triathlon world has a alu shaft, but the one at my LBS is unbranded momcoq for 175$ which is what I would pay for most all carbon forks plus delivery on either ebay or most sites on the net, even the nashbar 100% carbon fork would cost me more. I know I'm pinching on dollars but at the same time if I can save a dollar or more here that I can put there then I will.

Because I am building my bike, stripping the original paint on the frame repainting it etc.; it got me thinking what is the point of doing a nice clear coat if my bike is going to be banged up anyways, The only justification I could give myself was that the frame is steel and it might help protect it better along side of using frame keeper spray. So then I thought about the aesthetics and functionality of the carbon fork thinking 'how much of a beating can it take? and is it worth if a simple rock is going to tear right through it wherein a teel fork would be cheaper and most likely just dent or scratch?'

Am I right in thinking that? I have been told by not only my LBS but others that a CF is just a marketing ploy aside from the obvious weight factor.

What you think Timo?

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Old 06-30-07, 08:48 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shapelike
If it's that much of an issue just skip it. Carbon will likely be stronger than steel, it's just that steel has the chance of failing more gracefully. If the longevity of the part is up for debate well then again steel has the potential to outlast carbon. If you're not trying to set some sort of record for longest-lived cx frameset and the budget allows for it, you'll probably enjoy taking a couple pounds of the front end of your bike, along w/ all the comfort benefits (similar to steel).

That's what I was figuring, but if the cost difference is 50$ I'll go carbon, but if its a matter of it having a typical life span of 2 years over 5 years for the steel then ill save both my money and time and just get the steel fork.

MY LBS advised a bladed aluminum fork for 100$ if I wanted the same dampening effect of the regular road style cromoly fork at half of its price.

PS guys thanks for helping me in my decision making
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Old 07-01-07, 02:51 PM   #11
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Whatever you do, forget about any 1" cyclocross fork with a carbon steerer. Even in a roadbike I'm no fan of carbon steerers unless they're 1 1/8" - but in cyclocross it's insane.
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Old 07-01-07, 03:16 PM   #12
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k thanks for the input, save me a chunk of change there Timo. So curved road forks or bladed fork? I'm gonna go aluminum for the blade or steel for the curved fork
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Old 07-02-07, 03:25 PM   #13
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just to help compound your indecision... have you considered getting canti mounts brazed to your frame? then getting a 'cross fork with mounts as well? just a thought. but then i guess you have to buy new brakes too.

how are the 105's for tire clearance? would that carbon road fork give you enough tire and mud clearance?
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Old 07-02-07, 03:39 PM   #14
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yes and yes

but for now I will use the 105s until I have enough $$ for a true cross bike or even just for the fork and cantis. I want to use what I have aready cause i cant afford too much else since this is my spare since my primary got jacked last week. FAKERS
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Old 07-02-07, 04:25 PM   #15
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you had a bike stolen? that really sucks.

well, if cash is tight, i think you should go with a steel fork. it'll be more durable and less expensive. plus, down the line you can "upgrade" your frameset by having mounts brazed to the frame and fork... which would probably be way cheaper than a new frameset. or perhaps go with a steel cross fork you could still mount a caliper to until you can get brake bosses added to the frame.

sorry to keep derailling your thread further, but i just keep thinking about tire clearance issues with road calipers and cross tires... when you found your peugeot, did it have brakes on it? i've built up two 'cross inspired single speed commuters for friends. on both i ended up running the original centerpull mafac "racer" caliper brakes, which have tons of clearance with cross tires (38c on one of the bikes i built) and had nice stopping power once i put new pads in them. with those brakes, you probably wouldn't even need to worry about getting brake bosses installed. check ebay. they can be had for cheap.

do you have tires yet? www.icyclesusa.com is currently selling 30c ritchey speedmax's for $16. they're the wire beaded ones.

good luck!
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Old 07-02-07, 06:40 PM   #16
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Funny you should say...

oddly enough it had brakes on it not the older mafac, mavic or peugeot brand forks, but shimano exage brakes and levers. The clearance on both my 105s and my exages was about the same I just just had enough clearance for my 35 tires and had a bit more with my exages so I stuck with the 700c x 35 tires. I'm using ritchey speedmax pro comps. they were cheap so i figured I would get a set of them because clearance allowed but barely. I'll definately show pics of the whole project once I am done.

anyways I am almost done my bike I think I will go with the aluminum fork cause my LBS strongly suggested it and mentionned it would be as good as the chromoly fork and they know my intentions with the bike.

also I put up a thread asking for help on naming my bike http://bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=315894 ... my favs so far are 'lost & found' and 'mullet' help me find a name. thanks

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Old 07-03-07, 07:24 AM   #17
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well i'm glad they're no tire issues for you then. sorry i kept obsessing. between too much coffee and thinking of a friend's nishiki project that is similar to yours, i thought you could be in for headaches.

an aluminum fork would still be light and tough. i'm really interested to see this bike when you're finished. do you know what model of frame your peugeot is?

i saw your name thread. i really think 'lost and found' is my favorite, and seems most appropriate.
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Old 07-03-07, 09:48 AM   #18
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same.. but like i said mullet and lost&found seem to be the best names... its a 93 peugeot select (what i believe) but I can't find anything on the serial number and also after the mid 80s peugeots didn't reall carry th ux or px model number and were usually made either in the states canada or japan... and if you were lucky in france...

ill start a new post and put up pics of my peugeot before and while im building it...

against much advice, I have still gone with bullhorns and aero levers. gonna be an interesting bike...
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Old 07-03-07, 05:03 PM   #19
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****ty the owner of triathlonworldusa.com called me today to confirm my order and tell me that their profile design carbon forks would be sent to me on monday if i ordered today and it would cost 18$ for shipping... now i feel stupid cause it would cost me the exact same for a carbon fork as it would a aluminum fork...

freaking expensive here... cept i know if it fails i can bring it back when ordering a fork online im a lil more worried...

http://www.triathlonworldusa.com/sho...id=27&catid=26 if any of you are interested....
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