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Rigid Fork vs Susp Fork on Road/Light Trail Bike

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Rigid Fork vs Susp Fork on Road/Light Trail Bike

Old 04-17-24, 06:43 AM
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Rigid Fork vs Susp Fork on Road/Light Trail Bike

I have ordered the Orbea Alma M-Ltd with the rigid fork to be used as an urban commuter/light trail bike. I'm going for a more upright/comfortable/no flat vibe so the plan is to swap the tires for 38mm Marathon Plus, add a Thudbuster LT and have the handlebar adjusted accordingly. I am now told that I can shave a few weeks off delivery if I take the Fox 100mm susp fork which adds about 800g I think.

There are a significant amount of steep inclines on my bike lane commute, often from a stop, and there is a significant amount of cracked pavement on the roadways. I am wondering if the added comfort would be worth the added weight.
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Old 04-17-24, 06:51 AM
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If your commute has cracked pavement I'd go for a minimum of 300mm of travel both back and front, then, when you reach a smooth climb switch to a top spec Aethos delivered by your team car.
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Old 04-17-24, 07:06 AM
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I want to keep weight to a minimum as I find I can climb easier. The Thudbuster on my current ride smooths things out nicely but a bit more might be good if itís worth the 800g weight increase.

Iíve never ridden a susp fork so just want to make sure it wonít make life difficult.
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Old 04-17-24, 07:09 AM
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Sounds like you should stick with the rigid fork. You can always run pretty wide tires to make the ride more comfortable, without the added weight, inefficiency and maintenance of suspension (considering your intended use; this is not meant as a blanket condemnation of suspension).
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Old 04-17-24, 07:36 AM
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Thank you.

apparently the susp fork is very light. If you added 800g to a bike would you feel the difference on a steep incline ? I know when I switched from my steel framed bike to my current aluminum (all things not being equal to be fair), the climbs got much easier.
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Old 04-17-24, 08:36 AM
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You seem to be very all over the place with your new bike purchase. I think you really need to figure out what you want first rather than panning to buy Bike A, then Bike B, then ordering Bike C, then what tire should you use, now maybe you should get a suspension fork on the MTB that you're not even using as a MTB. Next you'll somehow change your order to a downhill bike and ask about putting tubulars on it...

I'd suggest you first figure out what exactly you want this bike to do well, then determine what type of frame, fork, component and tire setup fits those needs and then narrow down bikes that fit those criteria.
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Old 04-17-24, 08:51 AM
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Suspension forks are best suited to off road. The fox probably has a lockout lever so you can turn it into a ridgid fork, but then it's still 800g of extra weight and eventual maintenance. The only benefit I found is you can run a narrow tire and have no issue with bad road conditions.... since it's on a suspension fork. If the ridgid fork can fit 32mm+ tires it will be plenty comfortable.

I just looked and the stock ridgid fork can take massive 2.4in tires. No way in heck do you need a suspension fork+2.4in tires for road.
At that point you have a mountain bike. Heck I have raced XC with smaller tires and steeper head angles back in the day.
If I was building this for the road/light trail I would run ridgid, with 2.0 xc race tires with a solid rib down the center like a hutchinson python.
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Old 04-17-24, 08:52 AM
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The bike is exactly what I want. It has the SRAM gearing I want and the flat handlebars and itís super light. Iím told it can be adjusted easily for an upright comfortable riding position

Just wondering if adding 800g is is worth it for the added comfort.

I guess Iíd have to actually ride it to see though.

missed above reply. Thatís what I needed to hear
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Old 04-17-24, 09:20 AM
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That's an $8600 commuter bike...but anyway, I'd keep the suspension fork on it. It's an XC bike, it already doesn't make sense as a commuter bike, so why not run the suspension fork? Furthermore, that's the 32mm Fox factory stepcast. It is a lightweight fork designed for racing XC. I've got the larger, 34mm diameter, 120mm travel factory stepcast on my FS XC bike and it's very efficient...zero movement when locked out. Besides, Sram 1x12 MTB gearing is plenty low for steep climbs.

Also, if I was going to commute to work on my XC bike, I wouldn't bother with semi-smooth hybrid tires. Many of the modern XC race tires actually have less rolling resistance than the hybrid and gravel tires. Something like my Conti Race Kings roll very fast on the pavement, but won't be giving up a bunch of traction.
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Old 04-17-24, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by MikeDeason
The bike is exactly what I want. It has the SRAM gearing I want and the flat handlebars and itís super light. Iím told it can be adjusted easily for an upright comfortable riding position

Just wondering if adding 800g is is worth it for the added comfort.

I guess Iíd have to actually ride it to see though.

missed above reply. Thatís what I needed to hear
Suspension is for big hits. Wide tires with supple casings at lower pressures are for comfort on cracked pavement and gravel.
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Old 04-17-24, 09:48 AM
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I'm in the no suspension on anything other than a dedicated offroad bike club.
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Old 04-17-24, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by MikeDeason
The bike is exactly what I want. It has the SRAM gearing I want and the flat handlebars and itís super light. Iím told it can be adjusted easily for an upright comfortable riding position

Just wondering if adding 800g is is worth it for the added comfort.

I guess Iíd have to actually ride it to see though.

missed above reply. Thatís what I needed to hear
Another option is a shock-absorbing seatpost. Adding one to my commute bike negated a good deal of our local paving sins.
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Old 04-17-24, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Rick_D
Another option is a shock-absorbing seatpost. Adding one to my commute bike negated a good deal of our local paving sins.
That's the Thudbuster he mentioned in his original post.
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Old 04-17-24, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by MikeDeason
The bike is exactly what I want. It has the SRAM gearing I want and the flat handlebars and itís super light. Iím told it can be adjusted easily for an upright comfortable riding position

Just wondering if adding 800g is is worth it for the added comfort.

I guess Iíd have to actually ride it to see though.

missed above reply. Thatís what I needed to hear
But there really won't be "added comfort" - suspension is to soak up big hits and keep the tires in contact with the ground as much as possible over rough terrain - none of this is relevant to road cycling, regardless of how rough the road surface is. A suspension fork will give you added energy-sapping bobbing, weight and complexity.
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Old 04-17-24, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by SpedFast
That's the Thudbuster he mentioned in his original post.
Ah, didn't catch that's what it was.

Holy moly those are heavy! An option is the Ultimate Vybe @ 424g, versus 750g.
https://www.exposure-use.com/Brands/...atpost-ULTVYBE
I can say it works, but cannot compare the two.
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Old 04-17-24, 10:13 AM
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Yes. My current commuter has the Thudbuster ST. Huge difference in ride quality. I plan on getting the LT for this bike. Just thought the light susp fork might be worth the weight trade off to help
smooth out speed bumps and larger imperfections in the road but I believe I have been convinced otherwise.


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Old 04-17-24, 10:19 AM
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Cracked pavement is typical urban life and does not call for suspension anything, balloon tyres at best and recommended for rigids.

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Old 04-17-24, 10:44 AM
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Dude, I know you are really excited and enthusiastic, but you are overthinking everything IMHO

If you are immediately thinking adding a thud buster and changing out the fork. you got the wrong bike.

the bike you are getting is a super nice bike, performance bike don't detract from that with adding stuff you don't need

The best thing you can do for ride is getting high end supple tires. Forget the marathon plus (never mind that 38mm is too small for your rims, if the are the Oquo Mountain Performance MP30LTD, carbon hookless rim, DT240 S CL hub, Sram XD MTB freehub, 30mm internal width, Sapim CX-Ray TCS spokes, 29"

I suggest Rene Herse tires this looks like the smallest you can go is this one https://www.renehersecycles.com/shop...-pass-tc-tire/
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Old 04-17-24, 10:45 AM
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My setup.
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Old 04-17-24, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by MikeDeason
The bike is exactly what I want. It has the SRAM gearing I want and the flat handlebars and itís super light. Iím told it can be adjusted easily for an upright comfortable riding position

Just wondering if adding 800g is is worth it for the added comfort.

I guess Iíd have to actually ride it to see though.

missed above reply. Thatís what I needed to hear
So you got the group set you think you want that you've never used and don't really understand, along with flat bars on a lightweight bike that's not designed for your intended use, but you've been told can be made to fit you. Best of luck to you. I'll be waiting for the next post where the wait was going to be too long so now you're on to another completely different bike.
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Old 04-17-24, 12:27 PM
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Itís the only bike avail with local support that checked all the boxes.

SRAM Eagle AXS, light weight, flat bar.

I was told the handlebars could be positioned for a comfortable, upright type ride.

I chose the solid fork initially, which I am told basically makes it a road bike with a bit more forgiving frame. Convinced now to bypass the susp fork.

I will have to double check the tires. I was told I could get the 38 Marathon Plus or 40 Marathon Plus Tours on there but will clarify. Maybe he just said I could get a Marathon plus tire on the bike.

Not interested in dealing with flats on a winter commute.
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Old 04-17-24, 12:32 PM
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I’ve never heard of someone using an xc race bike as a commuter. My Marin has a similar geometry, and I do not enjoy riding it on pavement. Compared to my roadies, it feels, well, out of place, and doesn’t get into its own until I’m on the trails I’m riding to. IMHO, you’d be better off looking at a gravel bike with a one by setup.

I hope it works out.
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Old 04-17-24, 12:40 PM
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Well I was sold the idea that it would work perfectly as a hybrid type bike with a few minor modifications. I donít quite understand why it wouldnít if I change the seating position and go with the solid fork/no susp version.

https://bebikes.com/the-hub/orbea-alma-review-the-better-gravel-bike/

.
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Old 04-17-24, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by MikeDeason
Well I was sold the idea that it would work perfectly as a hybrid type bike with a few minor modifications. I donít quite understand why it wouldnít if I change the seating position and go with the solid fork/no susp version.

https://bebikes.com/the-hub/orbea-alma-review-the-better-gravel-bike/

.
Do yourself a favor, and ride a gravel bike like a Specialzed Diverge, or whatever Orbeaís bike is, and compare the ride to what youíre ordering. If you like the Alma better, there you go.
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Old 04-17-24, 12:47 PM
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What am I missing ??
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