The 27.5in, or 650b, tire standard has been around for decades, yet adoption by mountain bikers has been slow. It's now gaining momentum due to companies like Fox stepping up to the plate with high-performance fork options. The 160mm travel 2013 Float 34 650B CTD FIT Fork is equipped with Fox's new damping system that redefines how you adjust your fork.Fox forks have traditionally been featured packed, offering the ability to make all adjustments needed to tune the fork for any condition. The only problem was the difficulty for the average rider to make knowledgeable tweaks to the forks. High- and low-speed compression, lockout threshhold, preload, and rebound are all common adjustments, but, for the guy who wants to ride, and not relentlessly and aimlessly tune a fork, this can have a negative result on performance and user experience.With CTD (climb, trail, descend), one lever quickly and easily switches the fork's compression to ideal settings for the task at hand. The climb setting adds plenty of low-speed compression to mitigate bobbing when standing on the pedals. Trail mode offers moderate low-speed compression to balance efficiency with optimum trail manners, and it's also independently adjustable with three settings; soft, medium, and firm. Finally the Descend setting features high- and low-speed compression for plush action on steep and aggressive sections of trail. Another key feature to this new Fox is a redesigned spring curve for forks 130mm and above. There's now a more linear spring rate. This is achieved by using a longer negative spring and by reducing the air spring?s compression ratio. The resulting curve gives these air forks a more coil-like feel, and it also uses more of its travel because the preload won't ramp up.More good news comes from the lowers as well, for 2013 they are now 50 grams lighter than last year's comparable model. While that may not seem significant, keep in mind dropping mass from the lowers effectively reduces un-sprung weight ? which affects the amount of inertia the damper needs to control, resulting in enhanced suspension action. To drop the weight, Fox's engineers retained the Float's respected torsional stiffness by redesigning the brace, dropouts, and wall thickness.This is also the first time Fox has offered its 34mm stanchion on a platform other than a 29er. These forks offer comparable stiffness to the 36mm stanchions forks, but weigh in at about a half pound lighter. The 2013 Fox 34 Float 650B 160 CTD FIT Fork comes in White with the smooth and durable Kashima coating on the stanchion tubes. It's offered with a tapered, 1.5 to 1-1/8in steerer, and a 15QR axle.
Set is as easy as it gets. Set sag, rebound, and firmness of CTD and your good to go.
CTD feature and controls will adequately accommodate 95% its consumers. Most riders do no have the know how or want to take the time into properly set the high and low compression on their suspension and that why fox made the user friendly CTD. The The fork set up with proper sag is very plush in "D"escend mode, but The fork bottomed out too easy drops with flatter landing or stair steep descents, it need a little more high and low speed compression in my book. You could add more air but that would that would make the fork to stiff. It did however descend very solidly still plush but did not dive in "T"rail mode, also didn't give way to bobbing on climbs. "C"limb mode locked out the fork, is best used on long road or smooth climbs. Over all the fox 34 float is a great trail bike fork. It was used on an Intense Carbine 275, and has plenty of roam for a 2.5 27.5 tire, a 2.35 was used.
The major draw back to this fork is there is to little tuning capability of high and low compression and no bottom out controls. There is times when you would want a super plush fork with a good bottom out for that quick hit or drop off that you land wrong. But for most this will not an issue, and most will love the lighter weight over the 36 or Lyrick and easy up