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Old 05-15-09, 07:52 AM
  #17  
surreal
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The cromoto, last i checked, came in 2 sizes.

Going from a sprung fork to full-rigid will take some getting used to. Similarly, going from rigid to front squish is kinda weird, too. I like rigid stuff, and when i borrow my fiancee's hardtail, i'm appalled at how heavy/bouncy/$h!tty her ride is, because of the rockshox. To be fair, it is a ghastly, cheap, and weighty thing. Perhaps it isn't fair to compare the rigid to such a terrible fork--the dart with the lockout.

Oh, but wait, a decent taiwanese rigid fork costs $80 or so. The cheapest sprung forks that i'd even dream of buying aftermarket are $300; most appealing forks of the sort run closer to a grand. So, at $80 for a thing that's lighter, more efficient, and won't break in 4 months (as the OP's did) versus a finicky, high-maintenance thing that bobs and bounces and weighs 4 lbs? Maybe it is a fair comparison.... but it's not even close.

While we're on the topic of fairness, most modern riders choose suspension because, comfort and rattling and what have ya aside, an active suspension fork will keep your front tire in contact with mother earth significantly more than a rigid one. More contact=more traction = ultimately better performance. Modern suspension is lightyears ahead of the forks of a few years ago; they're lighter weight, more efficient, stronger, stiffer, better.

So, i can totally see your dilemma. I'm mostly afraid to get a suspension fork because i fear that i'll fuss with it constantly, on the trail and on the stand, and that i'll ride less as a result. But that's due to OCD and other annoying behaviors. My suggestion? Surly instigator @$80. Ride for a few weeks. Rebuild the original fork, with the heaviest spring. swap out the forks again, ride a few weeks. You may decide to keep one over the other, which is what ebay et al are for. Or, more likely, you might wish to keep both, and swap 'em out periodically to rediscover your rig.

hth,
-rob

PS- just saw that your chameleon is currently SS. you *must* try the rigid; the idea of running even a well-tuned and glorious springer on a SS fills me with dread
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