The Dizzy is BOS’s sole entry into the cross-country fork niche. It’s also BOS’s only fork available in 29in flavour; the rest of the range are all 27.5in all-mountain or downhill numbers. The Dizzy does share the same damper as the BOS Deville all-mountain fork though, tied into a package which weighs a claimed 1,580g.
BOS has a reputation for long service intervals (this one is two years for recreational riders), but the damper can’t be user-serviced once its two-year service interval is up, although UK distribution and servicing shifted recently to Jungle, which has invested in a new state-of-the-art service centre, so this should be trouble-free.
So, a cross-country fork with BOS damping in an ultralight package? It’s certainly an enticing prospect.
The fork is very distinctive looking. Lots of black with red accents; red anodising on the air-cap and the compression adjustment on the crown (rebound is by the axle at the bottom), and subtle red and black graphics, with a brace that’s split where it meets the lowers to save extra grams. It runs on relatively slender 32mm stanchions, and the lowers are fastened to the hub by a proprietary 15mm QR thru-axle.
The damping adjustment cap has three main settings – fully open, a middle ‘trail’ setting and a final ‘lockout’ – which isn’t total, but it’s near enough. I say ‘main’, as one of the interesting things about the Dizzy is that you can set the ‘trail’ point to be as close to the ‘open’ or the ‘lockout’ point as you like. As it came to us it was closer to the ‘open’ setting, and that’s how we left it.
Interestingly, how you treat these settings is contrary to your expectations, according to BOS. The fully open setting is for level, bumpy terrain; lockout is essentially for tarmac or fire road climbs, and the ‘trail’ setting is for pretty much everything else. Hence, I guess, all that adjustment.
Setting up the fork is also slightly different to other forks on the market. I was advised to do this with the fork in the ‘trail’ setting instead of my usual habit of opening it up totally, and after a couple of car park fiddles I was ready to go and ride. At this point I probably have to admit that I’m not a skinny cross-country racer-type – I’m a fairly hefty trail rider, and although I aim for smooth, I can’t say it’s something I attain often. Or even regularly.
Out on the trail, the fork was surprising, in a very good way. I can’t comment on the rest of the range, but I was very impressed indeed with its performance. The damping was beautifully plush on the smallest of hits and the biggest. A note here, though – If you don’t set the pressure up properly, it’s easy to feel that the fork is too linear.
But pop a little more pressure in there, and it starts to ramp up more – but with small bump sensitivity seemingly unaffected, once you’ve tweaked the damping to suit.
Those 32mm stanchions mean it’s not, perhaps, the stiffest fork around (but then, it’s a cross-country fork, not an enduro monster), but what was intriguing was that this never seemed to be a problem. It didn’t seem to pack down or bind, and I never found it to be unpredictable at any point. The main word I’d use to describe it was ‘controlled’, and it was extremely hard to overface.
I ran the Dizzy pretty much the whole time in the trail setting. I tried the open setting (against recommendations) on a couple of downhill sections and didn’t bother after that; ‘trail’ worked perfectly well enough as it was. Similarly, the lockout was used on long draggy tarmac or fire road sections, before I quickly reverted to trail.
Downsides? I didn’t get on particularly well with the axle initially, but my annoyance and frustration were ameliorated by a little grease – and by actually reading the manual…
Sure, it’s expensive, but no more so that many other top-of-the-line cross-country forks, and the Dizzy punches way above its (scant) weight. If you’re after a hyper-velocity cross-country fork, or even a lightweight trail fork, the Dizzy has to be well worth a look.
|Product:||Dizzy 29er fork|
|Tested:||by Barney for Three months.|