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Rigid forks for riding down the sidewalks?

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Rigid forks for riding down the sidewalks?

Old 01-04-14, 05:06 PM
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FoxMulder
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Rigid forks for riding down the sidewalks?

I picked up an old mountain bike on craigslist, and it came with a crappy suspension fork. Does it usually work out well to replace those old suspension forks with a rigid fork like this one: http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...28_-1___202347

Think that would make for a good ride going down the sidewalks to the store and around town?
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Old 01-04-14, 06:01 PM
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I threw away the collapsed suspension fork on my Schwinn 2.6. Replaced it with a Nashbar CF MTB fork that I had on hand. It rarely goes offroad. Makes a great all-around street bike. Suspension is a waste of money & weight on the street.

If I could only have one bike, a good rigid mountain bike would be a serious contender.
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Old 01-04-14, 06:46 PM
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If you're not planning on doing any off-road riding, a rigid fork is a great way to go. Only caveat - try and figure out what the travel is/was on the old suspension fork. The Nashbar one you linked to looks to be about 100mm. Even if its too high, you should still be able to ride the bike with the new fork, the steering just might be a little weird for a short time while you adjust to it. And yeah, rigid MTBs are great all around bicycles.

FWIW: I just ordered on of those Nashbar forks, too. I'll be using it to replace a cracked rigid fork on an early 1990s MTB, and I wanted the extra 'lift' so I could get rid of the stem extender I'm currently using. If my calculations are correct it should work out nicely.
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Old 01-04-14, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Flying Merkel View Post
Suspension is a waste of money & weight on the street.
Do you find you can still jump off curbs with it? That's one thing I sometimes do while riding on the sidewalks.

If money were no object, I'd almost definitely stick with suspension, but the nashbar rigid is quite economical.

Originally Posted by skidder View Post
If you're not planning on doing any off-road riding, a rigid fork is a great way to go. Only caveat - try and figure out what the travel is/was on the old suspension fork. The Nashbar one you linked to looks to be about 100mm. Even if its too high, you should still be able to ride the bike with the new fork, the steering just might be a little weird for a short time while you adjust to it. And yeah, rigid MTBs are great all around bicycles.

FWIW: I just ordered on of those Nashbar forks, too. I'll be using it to replace a cracked rigid fork on an early 1990s MTB, and I wanted the extra 'lift' so I could get rid of the stem extender I'm currently using. If my calculations are correct it should work out nicely.
I think the axle-crown is a little higher on the rigid, but I may actually like that more.

Are you sure the nashbar fork will fit an early 90's MTB? I thought most of those bikes had 1" threaded steerers and used quill stems.
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Old 01-04-14, 07:13 PM
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How about not riding on the "sidewalks"?
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Old 01-04-14, 07:18 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
How about not riding on the "sidewalks"?
No.
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Old 01-04-14, 08:07 PM
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I launch off curbs regularly. Light off-roading is no problem.

Around here, riding on the sidewalk is sometimes a matter of survival. There's etiquette to be followed.
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Old 01-04-14, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
How about not riding on the "sidewalks"?
sidewalk riding is dangerous for cyclist, pedestrian and motorist, kids ride on sidewalks (and shouldn't).
however, to answer your question, a rigid fork is great for commuting - especially when coupled with tires like schwalbe big apple.
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Old 01-04-14, 08:24 PM
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I wouldn't go jumping down, say, a flight of stairs with a retrofitted steel fork on a bike not designed for actual jumps, but hopping curbs is no problem. The handling might feel a bit strange for the first couple of minutes but you get used to it fast, assuming the fork is installed properly.

'90s MTBs used different sized steer-tubes and both threaded and threadless headsets were common so you're going to have to be sure to get the right thing. If your bike takes 1 1/8" threadless then that fork you linked would probably work fine but like you said, if your bike takes a 1" threaded steerer that nashbar fork would be useless. Here's the Sheldon page that shows the difference if you're not sure what you got and what you need. If you got a good LBS they might be able to hook you up and install something comparable to the nashbar rigid fork for a reasonably similar price.

What's the problem with the stock suspension fork? You might be able to breathe some new life into it if it just needs a bit of minor service. Uh, unless you just hate the thing. I wouldn't blame you if you did, some of those stock suspension forks were total junk..
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Old 01-04-14, 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by J.C. Koto View Post
What's the problem with the stock suspension fork? You might be able to breathe some new life into it if it just needs a bit of minor service. Uh, unless you just hate the thing. I wouldn't blame you if you did, some of those stock suspension forks were total junk..
Yeah, it's pretty terrible. Spinner brand? One with the big rubber boots on the stanchions. A suspension fork I could make due with would probably be $150, 3x the cost of the Nashbar. I've got single wall rims on the bike, too. So I'm hoping a rigid fork won't contribute to a front taco.
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Old 01-05-14, 09:42 PM
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[QUOTE=FoxMulder;16383202]

I think the axle-crown is a little higher on the rigid, but I may actually like that more.

Are you sure the nashbar fork will fit an early 90's MTB? I thought most of those bikes had 1" threaded steerers and used quill stems.[/QUOTE

Yep, checked it out before committing to the new fork and it should be an easy relacement. It's a 1 1/8" threadless steerer tube. Its a 1994 MTB, which is about the time threadless steerers started to become more common. FWIW, there were also a few 1 1/8" threaded steerers around that time. I've got a Trek 8000 with one, don't know what I'd do if the fork on it needed replacement
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Old 01-05-14, 09:48 PM
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In England I was Admonished "the Pavements(sidewalks) are for People and Dogs"..


Think that would make for a good ride going down the sidewalks to the store and around town?
this a request for permission? NB suspension corrected is a useful buzzword here..

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Old 01-06-14, 08:26 AM
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Any suspension corrected rigid fork of appropriate size will work. Dimension makes some that look identical to many of the rigid chrome moly forks on 1980s - 90s MTBs and Hybrids.
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Old 01-06-14, 09:04 AM
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Originally Posted by martianone View Post
sidewalk riding is dangerous for cyclist, pedestrian and motorist, kids ride on sidewalks (and shouldn't).
Where it is legal, sidewalk riding may be safer than the road. Remember the pedestrian always has the right of way on the sidewalk. A lot of states explicitly permit children to ride on sidewalks even if adults are not. This is a topic well covered in the Advocacy& Safety forum.
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Old 01-06-14, 09:18 AM
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I think that a mountain bike frame with a rigid fork and not-too-skinny smooth tires makes the ideal beater bike.

A common ride for me would be up to the corner convenience store. When I do that I ride on the sidewalk on the way to the store and in the street on the way home. that way I never have to cross the street.
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Old 01-06-14, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by FoxMulder View Post
Do you find you can still jump off curbs with it? That's one thing I sometimes do while riding on the sidewalks.

If money were no object, I'd almost definitely stick with suspension, but the nashbar rigid is quite economical.



I think the axle-crown is a little higher on the rigid, but I may actually like that more.

Are you sure the nashbar fork will fit an early 90's MTB? I thought most of those bikes had 1" threaded steerers and used quill stems.
You can go off curbs on a rigid bike but you have to land differently. With suspension, the fork will absorb much of the impact while your arms and legs absorb the rest. On rigid, your arms and legs have to do all the work. Make sure you land with both arms and legs flexed and relaxed. Otherwise the bike takes all the energy of impact and translates it to you.

If money is no object, get modern air suspension fork with a lockout. If money is really no object, make it a Fox.

Mountain bikes from the 90s are going to be a mixed bag when it comes to steer tube diameter. Some are 1" threaded but some are 1 1/8" threaded or even 1" threadless and 1 1/8" threadless. You'll just have to measure the diameter. Finding a new 1" threaded fork might be difficult. The Nashbar one is a 1 1/8" threadless. Swapping out to a threadless isn't difficult but you'll need a new headset and a stem if the bike you have now is threaded.
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