For many riders, suspension is one of the most important aspects to a modern mountain bike. Not all bikes use it, and not all riders need it. But for most of us, the added comfort and control of using suspension allows us to ride faster and with greater momentum – especially when the terrain gets rougher.
When you think about it, suspension travel itself is a funny thing. Because when it boils down to it, just 8cm of travel can separate a full-blown freeride bike and a lightweight XC hardtail. 10mm here or there doesn’t sound like a lot, but in the real world, it can cause a much bigger effect. Whether it’s 10mm more fork travel, or 10mm difference in your saddle height, the difference can be night and day.
With that in mind, we want to know how much travel you’re rolling with on the front of your primary mountain bike. Whether you ride a hardtail or full suspension, or even fully rigid – how much travel does your fork have? Have your say in the poll below!
How much maximum fork travel does your main mountain bike have? (2017 edition)
- 141mm-160mm (35%, 311 Votes)
- 100mm-120mm (27%, 239 Votes)
- 121mm-140mm (25%, 229 Votes)
- None. I'm fully rigid! (7%, 67 Votes)
- 161mm-180mm (4%, 39 Votes)
- Sub 99mm (2%, 14 Votes)
- 181mm and beyond (0%, 0 Votes)
Total Voters: 899
Maybe you own an all mountain bike that you use for enduro racing? Chances are you’ll have a fork with somewhere between 150-180mm of travel on the front of your bike. Something that’s nice and smooth for taking the hits, but burly enough to keep your front wheel pointing in the direction you need it to while bombing downhill.
Or perhaps you’re on an XC race bike instead with just 100mm of travel? Compared to longer travel forks, these lightweight XC forks feature skinnier 32mm diameter stanchions, firmer damping for out-of-the-saddle sprinting, and often tooled axles that are lighter than the quick-release versions used elsewhere.
Or are you rocking something a little different? Perhaps a Lauf suspension fork that skips the usual air spring and oil damper arrangement of a telescopic fork, in favour of fibreglass flex springs that offer 60mm of simplistic travel for all-weather adventuring.
Before suspension forks, there were rigid forks, and there are still plenty of those around today. With the advent of 29in wheels and wider tyres, bikes like the Jones Plus can offer a damped ride with plenty of traction, without having to resort to a conventional suspension fork.
So, how much travel does the fork on the front of your bike have? And what sort of fork do you use? We’d love to hear what you’re rolling with, so have your say and let us know in the comments section below!