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Coil vs. Air?

Old 12-14-06, 01:53 AM
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cmktech
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Coil vs. Air?

Too many great topics to discuss, but surely this will be my last thread for awhile.

The only thing holding me back from getting a nicely equipped hardtail or fs for that matter is a coil fork. Do you get full travel or near full travel out of your coil fork? They just seem so stiff and I loved riding an air fork that was tuned for my weight. Thoughts, opinions, etc. Discuss.
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Old 12-14-06, 02:10 AM
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mx_599
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Originally Posted by cmktech
Too many great topics to discuss, but surely this will be my last thread for awhile.

The only thing holding me back from getting a nicely equipped hardtail or fs for that matter is a coil fork. Do you get full travel or near full travel out of your coil fork? They just seem so stiff and I loved riding an air fork that was tuned for my weight. Thoughts, opinions, etc. Discuss.
yes, you will get full travel with proper set-up. i prefer coil...only drawback is weight.

purchase "lighter" spring rate if necessary for your riding preferences/ability.

Last edited by mx_599; 12-14-06 at 03:06 AM.
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Old 12-14-06, 07:06 AM
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Serious or kidding?

Why would a suspension company (a good one) make a fork with 140mm of travel if they were only going to tease you with 125?


Coil all the way!!! Soooo much smoother. Never have to check the air pressure again. How much weight are you really going to save? Just look at Fox's website. The difference between the 32 Vanilla and float isn't even worth a second glance. I changed from Stick-E to DTC Nevegal's and made up the difference right there.

Coil, man...coil.
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Old 12-14-06, 08:00 AM
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actually it depends a lot on preference. the basic plus about an air fork would be the adjustibility. you dont have to buy springs to adjust it to your weight. also, you are not restricted by set spring rates. the feel of an air fork would be a little different from a coil version, but with all the adjustability available nowadays, i am pretty sure you could set up an air fork to any feel that you want.

i would not concentrate so much on an air fork being marginally lighter than a coil version, nor on what people mention about different 'feels', but more on how much would you like to have adjustability. some people prefer the option of being able to adjust stuff to their riding styles, terrains, weight etc. some people find it a headache. figure out which one you are and decide. an air fork would be more adjustable, a coil would not, atleast not on the fly.

i will say that air forks are more likely to have 'issues' like losing travel or getting stuck down etc, but i would not lose much sleep over that, shock technology has come a long way and problems like that are not very regular. you can pretty much count on stuff being more or less reliable..eh, for whatever that is worth.
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Old 12-14-06, 09:14 AM
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Agree'd...to a point.

When I'm riding my air sprung fork out in the "wilderness" hehe, I am afraid to drop the air pressure b/c I don't carry my fork pump with me on the trail. If I accidentally let too much air out using a stick or key...you're scrood dood.

When I'm riding my Fox Vanilla fork, I can adjust my preload from too firm to too squishy and everywhere in between just by twisting the preload knob one way or the other.

I have to add air to my air fork approx 1x per month especially when the weather is hot-cold-hot-cold.
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Old 12-14-06, 09:33 AM
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I'm riding a coil fork on a hardtail now and I'm loving the "set it and forget it" aspect of suspension maintinanace.
When I was riding a FS XC bike with air shocks and forks I was always fiddling with it and lost air once or twice on the trail. Not to say my next bike won't be air sprung (reliability has gone way up), I just enjoy not having to deal with it right now.
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Old 12-14-06, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by ankush
i would not concentrate so much on an air fork being marginally lighter than a coil version, nor on what people mention about different 'feels', but more on how much would you like to have adjustability. some people prefer the option of being able to adjust stuff to their riding styles, terrains, weight etc. some people find it a headache. figure out which one you are and decide. an air fork would be more adjustable, a coil would not, atleast not on the fly.
which coil forks are well below 3.5 lbs?
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Old 12-14-06, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by chelboed
Why would a suspension company (a good one) make a fork with 140mm of travel if they were only going to tease you with 125?
Marz over exagerates its travel. You typically loose 5 to 15mm depending on the fork and model. Their original z150's were a lot closer to a z142 than the z150 they claimed.
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Old 12-14-06, 10:53 AM
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^^^ Didn't they count negative travel? Or were you counting that too?
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Old 12-14-06, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by ghettocruiser
^^^ Didn't they count negative travel? Or were you counting that too?
When the fork's extended, it's extended. The negative spring just helps the first portion of the travel feel softer for the little bumps.

Hang up a bike with a neg. spring. Pull down on the lowers and see if you can get it to pull out any further...you won't unless there's something wrong with the spring ie...broken, too short, waaaaaay to soft (softer then the neg spring)
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Old 12-14-06, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by ghettocruiser
^^^ Didn't they count negative travel? Or were you counting that too?
I was counting that too. Marz tends to measure how much stanchion is showing. I don't know about the newest forks. But definately my old 2003 and previous forks.
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Old 12-14-06, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelstrom
Marz over exagerates its travel. You typically loose 5 to 15mm depending on the fork and model. Their original z150's were a lot closer to a z142 than the z150 they claimed.
I get 147mm with mine, but I could just be measuring wrong.

Back to the topic, I don't ride air mainly because of the riding I do and the fear of blowing it out. If I were to build up a XC rig I would defiantly look into air.
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