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mack_turtle

Hardtail setup options

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What kind of tire size and fork do you find to be optimal on a hardtail for Austin riding? What kind of fork is "too much" and at what point is it "not enough" fork?

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Thats a pretty broad question that'll probably get a lot of different answers. I liked running a 120mm fork on my honzo with 29X 2.35s F&R for most everything here, but also ran it at 130mm with a 1* angleset if i was trying to bash it around a bit. 

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I run 100mm and don’t do any big drops, but I have seen a huge improvement in handling in going from conti race king 2.2 to Specialized Ground Control 2.3 front and back.

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Most of it depends on the geometry of the frame. My HT takes a 130mm Fox and the pike I am putting on the new HT I am building should work as well. But I would think anything over 130 will chopper the bike. I might even have some spacers put in to drop the fork to 120mm someday.

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, ATXZJ said:

Thats a pretty broad question that'll probably get a lot of different answers. I liked running a 120mm fork on my honzo with 29X 2.35s F&R for most everything here, but also ran it at 130mm with a 1* angleset if i was trying to bash it around a bit. 

Was the Angleset set up to slackened or steepen the HTA? I would assume most people are always chasing a slacker HTA but perhaps one might want to steepen it after putting a longer fork on.

Edited by mack_turtle

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Just now, mack_turtle said:

Was the Angleset set up to slackened or steepen the HTA? I would assume most people are always chasing a slacker HTA but perhaps one might want to steepend if after putting a longer fork on.

good question. I slackened it and added some travel to compensate for the steepened angle under sag.  65-66* with a short 40-42mm CSU has been working well for me lately

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Posted (edited)

I ask because my frame can take a 140mm fork, I have it at 120 now, it's  scientifically due* for a basic service and I could drop it to 100. I have both air springs as options.

140 seems like overkill for my riding, would chopper out the bike like whoa, and that would mean buying a new $$$ fork anyways. My approach to riding is to get away with the "least amount of bike" possible. I rode it rigid a few times lately and I am finding that's just no longer fun. I wonder if I could tune in a 100mm spring enough to make it viable, but that level of suspension wizardry might be beyond my skills as this point.

On that note: anyone find that paying extra for SKF seals is worth it beyond the price of OEM Rockshox wiper seals?

*I determine when it's time to service my fork by how old the oil stains on the garage floor are. They're getting pretty stale. Probably out to replace my wipers too.

Edited by mack_turtle

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You kinda fucked these days if you want a hardtail with less then a 120mm fork, unless you're a racer boy. That being said suspension is getting good enough that what seemed like a lot of travel a few years ago is surprisingly manageable today.

Mack, I think one of your biggest problems is you have a pretty unsophisticated fork. Imo something with a stiffer chassis and better damper will make the 140ish fork your bike was designed for feel much more reasonable.

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Posted (edited)

I would not say that frame was designed for a 140 mm fork. It came with a short rigid fork and it can handle a 140. That does not mean it's a good idea for me.  Stiffer and better damping would probably do me good, but I have yet to feel like "oh man! If only I had more travel on my fork!"

Edited by mack_turtle

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25 minutes ago, mack_turtle said:

I would not say that frame was designed for a 140 mm fork. It came with a short rigid fork and it can handle a 140. That does not mean it's a good idea for me.  Stiffer and better damping would probably do me good, but I have yet to feel like "oh man! If only I had more travel on my fork!"

The way to get that feeling is to ride a bike with more travel for a while and then go back.

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9 hours ago, Kyle said:

The way to get that feeling is to ride a bike with more travel for a while and then go back.

And at what point does one say, "OK, that's enough!"?

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Someone wanna lend Mack a fork? 

 

Come to think of it doesn't Suntour have a demo program where they will ship a fork right to your house?

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Posted (edited)

I have ridden my Karate Monkey with the original rigid fork (480mm a-c) and a Reba at 120. The Reba is fine, just wondering why I would want to go longer or if I can shorten it. Taking apart a fork to lower it for one ride is kind of a PITA. The Reba at 120 seems fine, but when I see "everybody" using longer forks, I have to wonder if I am missing something from my perspective of ignorance. Then again, maybe I am overdoing it because everyone else falsely thinks they always need more suspension.

 

also just wanted to create an opportunity for people to talk about the hardtails they are riding.

Edited by mack_turtle

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2 hours ago, Big_papa_nuts said:

Someone wanna lend Mack a fork? 

 

Come to think of it doesn't Suntour have a demo program where they will ship a fork right to your house?

If you have a king headset you can borrow my Fox Factory 34 for a day.

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19 hours ago, mack_turtle said:

I would not say that frame was designed for a 140 mm fork. 

It's sold with a 140, so its probably designed for a 120 knowing Surly.

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So you know how to add a spacer to a Reba? I have a 140mm with a cane creek crown race. If you want to add a 10mm spacer to it to drop it to 130mm it would actually work out better for me. Only downside is you’d have to try it with my front wheel too because I am guessing ou don’t have a 20mm wheel. 

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Posted (edited)

The Reba I have has different air shaft sizes that alter the travel. 2015, I think. I don't think there's a spacer option for this generation. Mine is limited to 80 to 120mm.

I think the spacer reduction method is for older Solo Air or Dual Air forks. I had a Dual Air Reba and I was able to switch it from 80 to 100 mm that way. I had loads of trouble with that fork for I learned how to reassemble it with great efficiency. Might take you up on the 140mm option just to see what that feels like.

Edited by mack_turtle

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I ride my K-monkey with a 100mm fork.  It was rated for 100mm to 140 mm travel.  I prefer the handling of the short fork and my riding style doesn't require more.

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Looking at current model geo, seems like it's rated at 67.5* HTA with a 140mm fork. Gotta be close to 70-71 sagged out with a 100-120 fork. A little steep for my taste but to each his own.

FWIW, that Reba is pretty flexy and you'd probably notice better results finding a good deal on a pike rct3 or fox equivalent. 

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Posted (edited)
48 minutes ago, ATXZJ said:

Looking at current model geo, seems like it's rated at 67.5* HTA with a 140mm fork. Gotta be close to 70-71 sagged out with a 100-120 fork. A little steep for my taste but to each his own.

FWIW, that Reba is pretty flexy... 

69° with a rigid / 100mm fork, on paper. 120 is probably more like 68. Head tube angle versus front-center is an interesting comparison that gets ignored too often though. I don't worry about going OTB much and worry far more about keeping weight on the front tire in turns. Seated position doesn't mean much to me because ... what kind of jerk sits while wrangling a mountain bike? The seat tube gets pretty friggin slack on the KM though. I can't stand up all the time.

Flexy Reba is why I would not want to go longer than 120 on one. Probably better off with less travel than a noodily fork. Even a "good deal" on a new fork is something I'll consider a long way down the road in the context of what I spent on bike stuff recently and the Disneyland trip that I am being dragged into this year. Holy shite that place is expensive!

Edited by mack_turtle
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9 hours ago, ATXZJ said:

Looking at current model geo, seems like it's rated at 67.5* HTA with a 140mm fork. Gotta be close to 70-71 sagged out with a 100-120 fork. A little steep for my taste but to each his own.

FWIW, that Reba is pretty flexy and you'd probably notice better results finding a good deal on a pike rct3 or fox equivalent. 

Actually I have 3 forks, the Reba RL Ti, a Fox Factory 34 and a Pike. The Reba (with a 20mm axle where the other 2 are 15mm) is too stiff for me. This might be because the fork could use some service, but overall I have found the Reba to be the least favorite of the group. The Fox and Pike do a great job of eating up the rough stuff but when I get done with a lap on the Reba my back and shoulders are stiff.

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