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return of Rigid Forks mt bikes

Old 07-16-16, 04:00 PM
  #26  
Lazyass
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Originally Posted by Mountain Mitch View Post
Probably a lot of people bought bikes with too much suspension for their needs and riding style or ability.
3 inches of travel front and rear, weight @25lbs is the perfect bike for me. Most bikes I see today weigh more (unless you want to pay $4000) and have too much travel.
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Old 07-25-16, 05:39 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Kindaslow View Post
I was riding fully rigid last year, and it really is extremely fun. And, given that I do not make any money riding, it is all about fun and staying in shape. However, after a while, I decided that my 50+ body was taking a beating riding fully rigid. That does not mean it was not fun, though.
The closer you get to 60 the more a rigid beats you up. I don't even want a road bike that can't take at least a 37c tire.
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Old 07-25-16, 10:50 PM
  #28  
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Only rigid bikes I see are coming out in big numbers are Plus and Fat bikes. The low pressures you can run in those tires will help with some of the chatter from the full rigid bikes. Friend of mine recently bought a 29+ Trek. After a few month of getting hammered...he bought a suspension fork.

Orbea and Focus came out with some pretty killer rigid 29r's. Only guys I picture riding those would be fit and fast XC riders.
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Old 07-26-16, 10:23 AM
  #29  
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After spending 3 days bikepacking this past weekend with a front shock, I'm definitely considering a rigid fork. The speeds are slower so needing the traction for faster speeds isn't all that necessary and not having the slight bounce when climbing would be a benefit.
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Old 07-26-16, 11:32 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by SpeshulEd View Post
After spending 3 days bikepacking this past weekend with a front shock, I'm definitely considering a rigid fork. The speeds are slower so needing the traction for faster speeds isn't all that necessary and not having the slight bounce when climbing would be a benefit.
I've bikepacked with and without a suspension fork. I didn't find the suspension fork a hindrance on climbs and it sure helped on descents or over rocky sections.

On the other hand, the rigid fork didn't hurt that bad. Mostly because I had to slow down significantly on descents.
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Old 07-26-16, 01:57 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by FrozenK View Post
I've bikepacked with and without a suspension fork. I didn't find the suspension fork a hindrance on climbs and it sure helped on descents or over rocky sections.

On the other hand, the rigid fork didn't hurt that bad. Mostly because I had to slow down significantly on descents.
I'm so slow on descents, I doubt I'd notice much difference, haha.

I locked out the fork when I was climbing and it wasn't so bad, but I imagine the weight savings might be helpful. I see rigid forks for the Karate Monkey all the time, so I might pick one up for cheap and see how it works out.
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Old 07-26-16, 06:14 PM
  #32  
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Ah to be young and able to ride a rigid ,,,Sigh
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Old 08-11-16, 08:48 PM
  #33  
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Most of my MTB trails here in Texas are cross country style and single trails that cut back and forth up and down hills and through creek and river bottoms. We don't get the chance for a lot of fast downhill here so that definitely colors my impression of this topic differently from someone living, for example, in Colorado.

I Never had a problem with front suspension on my old 26 MTB but a few years ago I switched to a 29er with a Rock Shox XC28. Pretty soon I ended up riding it locked out all the time even on technical terrain because it felt like it was absorbing too much of my forward momentum. Then, on the steep troughs, it felt like it was loading up a bunch of energy and launching the bike up into my face rather than helping me roll through. So I have ridden with it pretty much locked out for the last couple years.

Now I am considering switching to a different frame for some better geometry and maybe even going with a single-speed for more simplicity. Since I never really got much good out of shocks on my 29er and I don't want to drop $400+ on a "good" fork, I figure I'll just save weight and go with no suspension. I think the resurgence of rigid bikes is due to a lot of people in similar situations not wanting to pay the price for admission for good suspension, and being generally happy with the ride comfort of larger wider tires currently available, in addition to reduced complexity and weight.

Last edited by Kenbi; 08-11-16 at 08:57 PM.
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Old 08-12-16, 12:34 AM
  #34  
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Have you ridden something besides an XC 28? It a pretty basic coil sprung fork. You can pick up a clean used air sprung fork from Rockshox and Fox on eBay for 200 to 300.
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Old 08-12-16, 05:48 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by I <3 Robots View Post
Have you ridden something besides an XC 28? It a pretty basic coil sprung fork. You can pick up a clean used air sprung fork from Rockshox and Fox on eBay for 200 to 300.

No I haven't, mostly because the paradox that if I am happy with the way a 29er rides rigid for my purposes, I have a hard time swallowing the pill on an accessory that mostly just adds weight, complexity, and expense, even if it can somewhat dampen the shock. But my perspective could be entirely due to the kind of terrain that I ride and I might find out that I'm really missing out on something if I happen onto a different kind of trail.
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Old 08-12-16, 04:38 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by Kenbi View Post
Pretty soon I ended up riding it locked out all the time even on technical terrain because it felt like it was absorbing too much of my forward momentum. Then, on the steep troughs, it felt like it was loading up a bunch of energy and launching the bike up into my face rather than helping me roll through. So I have ridden with it pretty much locked out for the last couple years.
Pilot error, plain and simple.

A properly adjusted fork (you know it can be adjusted, right?) will not have the characteristics that you describe.
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Old 08-12-16, 05:06 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by Kenbi View Post
No I haven't, mostly because the paradox that if I am happy with the way a 29er rides rigid for my purposes, I have a hard time swallowing the pill on an accessory that mostly just adds weight, complexity, and expense, even if it can somewhat dampen the shock. But my perspective could be entirely due to the kind of terrain that I ride and I might find out that I'm really missing out on something if I happen onto a different kind of trail.
Until you ride a proper fork (properly setup)...you're just guessing.
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Old 08-14-16, 06:50 AM
  #38  
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Rigid forks are probably OK for people who can jump their bike easily and pull up the front of their bike to sorta of do what the fork would do. In my case, my bike is heavy, so having the bike's suspension deal with it is best for me.
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Old 08-26-16, 05:53 PM
  #39  
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The genius of bicycles is their simplicity and reliability. Rigid bikes are great because you can jump on and ride anytime without checking and adjusting air pressure in the shocks. Suspension parts also need rebuilding every two or three years to keep working properly. Yes rigid is bumpy but the upside is you ride slower and more cautiously, so it's less risky.

I have a full suspension bike with clip-in pedals and a full rigid with BMX platform pedals. Guess which gets ridden more? No need to change clothes or shoes for the simpler bike. Unless you're a professional racer with sponsors and full-time mechanics simplicity is better. Downside is the squishy guys pass you all the time.

Last edited by Clem von Jones; 08-26-16 at 09:02 PM.
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Old 09-06-16, 11:36 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by LaughingLots View Post
A properly adjusted fork (you know it can be adjusted, right?) will not have the characteristics that you describe.
Is that true for lower-end suspension forks? Is that what the preload adjuster does?

The reason I ask, I've been riding a rigid-fork fitness hybrid for a couple of years, and I'm looking to add a second bike for off-road riding. Not mountain biking, just grass/dirt trails with rocks and roots, dirt roads with ruts, etc. Since it'll be a second bike, I can't really spend more than $600 or $700 on it. At that price point, I'm looking at lower-end suspensions such as Suntour XCT or XCM.

If a suspension fork like that will make a difference for this type of riding, then I'm leaning toward something like the Giant Talon series. But if not, then I'll stick with something like a Giant ATX Lite or ToughRoad (a little out of my price range, but maybe could swing it).

Not looking to hijack the thread. Just wanted to follow up on the statement quoted. If it's generally true that even low-end suspension forks can work well when properly set up, that will weigh heavily into my decision. Thanks!
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Old 09-07-16, 10:17 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by AU Tiger View Post
Is that true for lower-end suspension forks? Is that what the preload adjuster does?

The reason I ask, I've been riding a rigid-fork fitness hybrid for a couple of years, and I'm looking to add a second bike for off-road riding. Not mountain biking, just grass/dirt trails with rocks and roots, dirt roads with ruts, etc. Since it'll be a second bike, I can't really spend more than $600 or $700 on it. At that price point, I'm looking at lower-end suspensions such as Suntour XCT or XCM.

If a suspension fork like that will make a difference for this type of riding, then I'm leaning toward something like the Giant Talon series. But if not, then I'll stick with something like a Giant ATX Lite or ToughRoad (a little out of my price range, but maybe could swing it).

Not looking to hijack the thread. Just wanted to follow up on the statement quoted. If it's generally true that even low-end suspension forks can work well when properly set up, that will weigh heavily into my decision. Thanks!
No, that's not really what the preload adjust does, preload adjusts the sag, but doesn't change the spring rate (how much the spring compress per pound of force). With air shocks, the air pressure changes both the sag point and spring rate (volume spacers can also change spring rate).

The XC28 has interchangable springs, the stock spring is typically set for a ~200 lbs rider. Replacements are ~$50, so if you're technically handy its not expensive. I'm guessing that you're a lighter rider, and don't have enough weight to get the spring to really compress, heavy riders usually complain about blowing through the travel and tons of pedal bob. Light riders feel like they're riding a rigid fork, since they can hardly compress it.

The other thing you want adjust is the rebound damping, which controls how fast the fork returns after a hit. On RockShox, the turtle is slower and rabbit is faster, the knob is usually at the bottom of the fork leg. Since the fork is launching you, try setting it for slower rebound. The sign that you've gone too slow is that the fork starts to "pack" up , ie isn't fully recovering after a series of impacts.

As a side note, I actually have a Toughroad. One thing to consider with the bike is that the fork is not suspension corrected, so adding a fork later would significantly slacken the bike.
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Old 09-07-16, 11:49 AM
  #42  
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I live in Western Montana with relatively smooth trails compared to some areas. But I love suspension front only or front and rear and don't want to ride without it.

I love gears, too.

So many are riding Rigid Single speeds and loving it... Whatever works..
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Old 09-07-16, 11:59 AM
  #43  
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Different bikes for different trails. I would never ride my hard tail down some of these very steep rocky trails that I've seen full-suspension bikes drop off of. Gentle swoops through the woods, full suspension is just going to eat your power (maybe). There are many trails that I think that a full rigid would be perfect fun, plus it would allow me to rely upon my riding technique more than the equipment.
But, I wouldn't feel very good about taking a steep tall drop off with one.
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Old 09-07-16, 07:32 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by gsa103 View Post
No, that's not really what the preload adjust does, preload adjusts the sag, but doesn't change the spring rate (how much the spring compress per pound of force). With air shocks, the air pressure changes both the sag point and spring rate (volume spacers can also change spring rate).

The XC28 has interchangable springs, the stock spring is typically set for a ~200 lbs rider. Replacements are ~$50, so if you're technically handy its not expensive. I'm guessing that you're a lighter rider, and don't have enough weight to get the spring to really compress, heavy riders usually complain about blowing through the travel and tons of pedal bob. Light riders feel like they're riding a rigid fork, since they can hardly compress it.

The other thing you want adjust is the rebound damping, which controls how fast the fork returns after a hit. On RockShox, the turtle is slower and rabbit is faster, the knob is usually at the bottom of the fork leg. Since the fork is launching you, try setting it for slower rebound. The sign that you've gone too slow is that the fork starts to "pack" up , ie isn't fully recovering after a series of impacts.
Thanks for all of that. It's helpful, since I know very little about mountain bikes.

As a side note, I actually have a Toughroad. One thing to consider with the bike is that the fork is not suspension corrected, so adding a fork later would significantly slacken the bike.
Before reading your post, I wasn't even aware that frame geometries were different for suspension bikes. It makes sense after reading up on it, though. Thanks again for the help!
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Old 09-09-16, 10:17 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
3 inches of travel front and rear, weight @25lbs is the perfect bike for me. Most bikes I see today weigh more (unless you want to pay $4000) and have too much travel.
Funny you should post what I was thinking.

Old XC bikes were perfect for me. I don't do "North Shore" style ridiculous trials, I don't do 50 mph/50 degrees from horizontal downhills, I don't do 30-foot jumps---I don't even want to.

80 mm front 75 mm rear is all I have ever needed ... unfortunately 100 mm is considered "minimal" now.

The bike you describe would be the perfect bike for me.

Last edited by Maelochs; 09-09-16 at 10:22 AM.
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Old 09-10-16, 06:29 AM
  #46  
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a friend was riding one of his bikes a lot on gravel, so he decided to take the suspension fork off and put on the rigid fork that it came with to save weight. There really was no weight savings. Wasn't a carbon rigid fork though. My preference is that if a bike is going to be full rigid that it not have a suspension corrected geometry. that's not very common though, even on bikes that will never see a suspension fork
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Old 09-11-16, 07:36 AM
  #47  
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I ride an '84 Univega Alpina Uno that weighs in at 27lbs in all it's vintage shiny alloy glory. It's quick and climbs like a beast due to the lighter weight. I wont descend at a high rate of speed but it's no slouch, either.
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