Advice wanted: Cheap 2nd hand forks for Scrooge

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  • Advice wanted: Cheap 2nd hand forks for Scrooge
  • oldgwegg
    Member

    Whoever slagged off my Marzocchi MZ Comp forks (big spring in a tube, no oil, no air) in my other thread really got to me 🙁 They are on my *cough* 2004 Dawes Watoga *cough*

    As I haven’t been on a bike with decent kit, especially forks better then my MZ Comps, I’ve no idea how better forks would improve my riding experience. I suppose I’ve always assumed that because I don’t do jumps and very technical hairy downhill, then I don’t need better forks.

    But, yesterday, I noticed that sometimes it didn’t feel like I had any front suspension on the fast sections where I would have liked some basic damping for the vibration coming through the handlebars. I’m wondering if that has partly contributed to the tingling pain in my fingers (during and after the ride). Would better forks help with that ?

    Aside from better forks to help with the low-level continual vibration from riding offroad, I would like to think that better forks would help with bike handling generally and cope better with the occasional drop offs that I encounter.

    If I am going to replace them, I’m on a very tight budget so I was thinking that I could pick up something secondhand that is fairly old now (4 – 8 years), therefore, cheap but which was good when it came out and will still offer me a significant improvement over the spring in a tin that I’m riding now.

    Any ideas on what that would be ?

    Big thanks in advance – love the enthusiasm and advice on this forum.

    Further background on type of riding I do: just XC and the kind of single track that is part of the natural landscape around here (Massif Central, France). Sometimes its fast downhill, but nothing too technical, and I enjoy the climbing too. No jumps, but drop offs. I was looking at that video that Sturider posted of Coed Y Brenin and thats the kind of terrain that I come across fairly often.

    Joe
    Member

    If you’re savvy pick up a pair of f100’s from a few years ago. They are supple as new forks…just watch for stanchion wear.

    They are very very very plush and lovely as long as you maintain them and you can pick em up for bugger all.

    Thats my 2 pence.

    Premier Icon santacoops
    Subscriber

    I’ve got a pair of Marzocchi MZ Race forks if you want to take those off me for budget? May or may not be better than what you have at the moment… they served me very well.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    I have a pair of F100’s from a few years ago about to go on sale 🙂

    I fitted them with Enduro seals when I got them and the stanchions were fine. They’ve not done huge mileage since so I’ve no reason to doubt they still are. Disk only. Need to measure the steerer. Cosmetically fine although someones chipped aroudn the crown/steerer bit getting a crown race off but you can’t see it on the bike.

    £100 posted?

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
    Subscriber

    another option for you could be older RS Reba or Recon Air forks these can generally be converted between 100 and 120 or 130(Recon) with internal spacers. Would be suprised if you couldn’t pick something up from 06-08 era for £100 ish.

    oldgwegg
    Member

    Cheers for the suggestions on the forks – will check out the suggestions so far. I should have made it clear how penny-pinching I’m planning to be – not sure I can stretch to the F100 if they are about £100 secondhand – I’m really looking for bargain basement on the basis that whatever I get they should be better than the MZ Comp.

    @Santacoop – cheers for the offer on the MZ Race – I’ll take a look at them and PM you if interested.

    Any other offers or advice welcomed. Cheers all.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    You gotta be clever about this. And having a few mates helps too…..
    I’ve picked up 3-4 sets of forks for silly money just because someone had replaced their OE ones or had some lying around. £45 for a set of nice Recons is my best buy so far. I took a chance on those because they were OE 85mm travel which NOBODY wants. A quick strip and service, remove the spacer, and they were in perfect working order and 130mm travel…… 🙂
    They are out there. 🙂

    oldgwegg
    Member

    @PeterPoddy – thats more like it ! Now to find some mates around here who ride MTBs. Tractors yes, other than that, a lot of road riders, it being France and everything.

    danielgroves
    Member

    I’ve got a set of 2011 Recons it the classifieds now, going for about £100.

    Premier Icon ads678
    Subscriber

    PP – I’ve got some 100mm(ish) coil recons from a few years ago that were OE on a mates bike. d’you reckon i’d be able to do the same and increase the travel?

    sorry for the hijack!!

    uwe-r
    Member

    For cheap forks I would look for some Marz MX comp air forks, which I think are now called something else. I had some years ago that were ace. Nothing to them so not much to go wrong, just adjust with a shock pump. I think you would get something half decent on the bay for sub £100 maybe even sub £50. I then had some RS Tora coil that were ok but a bit heavy and just felt dead, avoid.

    PS for the riding you do you should really save up for a better bike or have a long term plan of upgrading everything. On that note would you be better of upping the budget and getting some longer travel forks – (which will then need a better frame as well).

    danielgroves
    Member

    PP – I’ve got some 100mm(ish) coil recons from a few years ago that were OE on a mates bike. d’you reckon i’d be able to do the same and increase the travel?

    Pretty sure when I looked it up in the service manual it was possible on my 2011s, not sure about the older ones though.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    PP – I’ve got some 100mm(ish) coil recons from a few years ago that were OE on a mates bike. d’you reckon i’d be able to do the same and increase the travel?

    Nope.
    Only air forks can be easily travel adjusted. You’d need a new, longer, spring at the very least but I suspect the coil ones were built to a fixed travel and that won’t work. LoCo tuning (he’s on here under that name) will know for certain though.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    OP –

    Here you go

    http://singletrackworld.com/forum/topic/fsbike-split

    There’s some Toras there, adjustable travel so will fit most frames should you decide to swap, for £60
    They’ll still be worth £60 in 2-3 years.
    Rip his arm off for them is my advice! 🙂

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    I’m going to offer 2 bits of advice here…

    1) Rockshox are generally a safer bet than Fox, especially at the low end
    2) It takes about 2 minutes to dismantly most forks enough to see the stanchions and check for wear. And anyone who doesn’t know how to do it, doesn’t know how to do a lowers service.

    Not to say that you should walk away from any that can’t do 2), but, it’s an easy way to learn more about your seller and sometimes about the forks.

    danielgroves
    Member

    Nope.
    Only air forks can be easily travel adjusted. You’d need a new, longer, spring at the very least but I suspect the coil ones were built to a fixed travel and that won’t work. LoCo tuning (he’s on here under that name) will know for certain though.

    Ah, fair enough. I never actually looked into it properly as I didn’t have the parts to finish the bike they were on, and then decided to brake and sell the bike, hence the forks being for sale.

    Premier Icon ads678
    Subscriber

    PP – cheers, thought as much.

    oldgwegg
    Member

    Thanks again for the posts.

    I noticed uwe-r suggested the possibility of buying more expensive forks with longer travel and therefore needing a new frame.

    Q: Why would I want longer travel forks ? If a shorter travel fork (80 – 100mm ) can provide the damping I need to handle the continuous bumpiness from riding fast on an uneven surface (i.e. everywhere off-road) AND if I don’t jump or ride too extreme, why else would I want a longer travel fork ? Honest question. Just trying to understand what meets my needs rather than assume longer travel is better for me.

    Not going to buy a frame right now, so ideally I’ll want something that’ll fit what I have without having to make any changes or buy any adaptors, etc.

    @PP – cheers for pointing out the Tora’s – looking in to it now.

    bigyinn
    Member

    If I could just find some 2nd hand forks out there with a loooonnnggg (250mm+) steerer I’d be rather happy.

    uwe-r
    Member

    Forks started out in the 80 – 100mm range but as time has gone on the standard has crept up where 120 / 140mm is accepted as about the sweet spot for uk trail riding. If your in the massif central I am assuming you have some excellent riding, similar to say the uk peak district without the rain, so I am suggesting you could justify some longer travel forks.

    As you go up beyond 100mm on the forks the frame geometry has to change to adjust to the longer (higher) fork. It might be an idea to look out for a frame and fork upgrade to something based around a 120mm or 140mm. A second hand on one 456 could be had very cheap which is based around 100 / 140mm fork compatibility and is the go to frame for that requirement on a budget.

    I would suggest you revise your budget and think a bit longer term, i.e. live with what you have got until you can upgrade the frame and fork.

    oldgwegg
    Member

    @uwe-r: cheers for the explanation and a bit more background. I suspect you are right about hanging on a bit longer. At least I’ve got a few ideas to play around with now: a) either get some cheap forks for about £50 to tide me over and flog them later; b) wait to get frame and better forks, c) wait to get a new bike. I could probably do a) without losing out on anything, while I wait to find a good deal on frame/forks or new bike.

    Probably warrants a separate thread but I’m wondering whether its better to buy a bike or just buy the parts. Suppose there are pros and cons – do you ever get a decent priced bike (£700 mark) with all decent components without needing to change something out. Or is it cheaper in the long run to just pick up the parts.

Viewing 21 posts - 1 through 21 (of 21 total)

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