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why lock front suspension?

Old 06-20-15, 11:25 AM
  #1  
avidone1
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why lock front suspension?

I understand that the front suspension on hybrids is intended for rough conditions like unpaved trails.
But what is the big deal about having a remote lock out?
What is the advantage on a paved road of eliminating the damping effect of the fork by locking out the suspension?
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Old 06-20-15, 11:36 AM
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Because for every fraction of an inch that your forks "give" or compress, it takes efficiency away from your pedaling power. Many pavement riders don't want to give up the efficiency when riding on hard surfaces. You will be faster on roads if you can lock your fork.


Originally Posted by avidone1 View Post
I understand that the front suspension on hybrids is intended for rough conditions like unpaved trails.
But what is the big deal about having a remote lock out?
What is the advantage on a paved road of eliminating the damping effect of the fork by locking out the suspension?
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Old 06-20-15, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by RickGr4 View Post
Because for every fraction of an inch that your forks "give" or compress, it takes efficiency away from your pedaling power. Many pavement riders don't want to give up the efficiency when riding on hard surfaces. You will be faster on roads if you can lock your fork.
And you will be able to climb better.
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Old 06-20-15, 01:19 PM
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I was just as skeptical until I got the manual lock-out feature on my 2015 Specialized Expert Disc. Makes all the difference. Bike is way faster and stiffer climbing or on flat fast pavement. If I'm descending and there are going to be significant bumps or seams I just flick the lock-out and activate my suspension. Changes the ride for the better completely. Try it. I bet you will like it.
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Old 06-20-15, 03:44 PM
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Also keeps the front end from pogo-ing when hitting the brakes going downhill.
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Old 06-20-15, 06:40 PM
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On 29ers with rigid forks, front suspension is unnecessary. Wider tires provide all the float one needs. And it doesn't rob one of pedaling energy induced by bobbing motion on an asphalt surface.
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Old 06-20-15, 09:15 PM
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Locked off for pavement or road pretty much always.

I'll even lock it off going uphill on dirt/gravel/trails especially if I'm off the seat.
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Old 06-21-15, 08:39 AM
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Pretty much what everybody said.

You want your front suspension locked on roads for efficiency. You will want it unlocked on trails to remove the buzz from the rough surface, make things more comfortable, and keep your front wheel connected to the ground (I.e. remove wheel bouncing).

Do do not buy a dual sport type hybrid without a "lockable" suspension if you plan do do any roads, or you will regret it as some other forum goers did. I initially tried a lower end DS with suspension always open, and the mushy front bouncing while I pedaled - sapping my power was a deal breaker! A hydraulic "on the go lockout" was the sweet spot.

As for different lockout terminology (typically as you go up the range):
- non locking: don't get these!
- mechanical lockout: need to get your weight off the bike to turn a knob on suspension to lock/unlock.
- hydraulic lockout: can reach down and turn a knob on suspension while riding to lock/unlock.
- remote lockout: lever on the handlebar to lock/unlock while riding (no reaching).
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Old 06-21-15, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by steve_cay View Post
Pretty much what everybody said.

You want your front suspension locked on roads for efficiency. You will want it unlocked on trails to remove the buzz from the rough surface, make things more comfortable, and keep your front wheel connected to the ground (I.e. remove wheel bouncing).

Do do not buy a dual sport type hybrid without a "lockable" suspension if you plan do do any roads, or you will regret it as some other forum goers did. I initially tried a lower end DS with suspension always open, and the mushy front bouncing while I pedaled - sapping my power was a deal breaker! A hydraulic "on the go lockout" was the sweet spot.

As for different lockout terminology (typically as you go up the range):
- non locking: don't get these!
- mechanical lockout: need to get your weight off the bike to turn a knob on suspension to lock/unlock.
- hydraulic lockout: can reach down and turn a knob on suspension while riding to lock/unlock.
- remote lockout: lever on the handlebar to lock/unlock while riding (no reaching).
Excellent reply....thanks
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Old 06-21-15, 10:21 AM
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Lock-out on low-end forks masks the lack of adjustability and valving that higher end forks have. The inability to fine tune spring rate, compression and rebound damping, as well as sag and lack of any type of anti-bob valving means locking-out the pogo stick is the only option you have. My suggestion is that youre better off with a rigid fork than any suspension fork that lacks the adjustments necessary to keep the tire tracking properly
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Old 06-21-15, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by NormanF View Post
On 29ers with rigid forks, front suspension is unnecessary.
Now I'm really​ confused....
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Old 06-21-15, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Mattyb13 View Post
I was just as skeptical until I got the manual lock-out feature on my 2015 Specialized Expert Disc. Makes all the difference. Bike is way faster and stiffer climbing or on flat fast pavement. If I'm descending and there are going to be significant bumps or seams I just flick the lock-out and activate my suspension. Changes the ride for the better completely. Try it. I bet you will like it.
+1 remote lock-out. makes all the difference.
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Old 06-22-15, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by RickGr4 View Post
Because for every fraction of an inch that your forks "give" or compress, it takes efficiency away from your pedaling power.
That might be a little too technical for some people (including myself) to comprehend. Would a suitable analogy be that of riding with under-inflated tyres?
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Old 06-22-15, 09:24 AM
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That was too technical??? Under inflated tires are certainly different but yes, it still falls into the category of muting or taking away power from your pedaling efforts.


Originally Posted by Robin Hood View Post
That might be a little too technical for some people (including myself) to comprehend. Would a suitable analogy be that of riding with under-inflated tyres?
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