Manitou Black Super 2003 Front Shocks

3.25/5 (32 Reviews)
MSRP : $449.95


Product Description

Weight: 3.7 lbs
Travel: 80/100 or 100/120 Rapid Travel Adjust
Damping: TPC w/Lockout
Adjustments: Air, Rebound, Lockout, Travel
Lubrication: Microlube with Motorex Grease
Spring: Air/Coil
Casting: Magnesium RA
Stanchions: 30 mm aluminum
Steerer: Aluminum


Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating

Reviews 1 - 15 (32 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by CaptainDownhill a Cross Country Rider from El Paso, Texas USA

Date Reviewed: September 26, 2007

Strengths:    When you figure out how to use it properly (adjust the air pressure and dampening), it is a great shock. I've done mostly All Mountain with some Freeride and radical Downhill mixed in and this shock never let me down. The combination of spring/air/oil make for an awesome ride.

Weaknesses:    After three years of use it began to lose some air pressure and I had it professionally rebuilt at my local bike shop. They replaced the seals, cleaned and rebuilt it for about eighty bucks. Then it was like brand new again. The mechanic told me it should have been rebuilt once per year.

Bottom Line:   
Great shock if you adjust it properly and maintain it correctly. I broke the frame on the Kokopelli and then put the Manitou Black Super 80/100 on my new ASR; I could't be happier with it. This shock is beat up and scratched, but it has saved my butt on some knarley downhill stuff with drops and bolders and speeds from 30 to 40 mph. Meahwhile, I broke the shock mount on the Fox Float and bent a set of Bontrager rims and yet the Manitou Black still works like it did when it was new.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   All of Them

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Purchased At:   Came with my Yeti Kokopelli in 2003

Similar Products Used:   Rock shock, Fox

Bike Setup:   Yeti ASR-sl, Mavic CrossMax, XT/XTR, Fox Float rear.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by kevin a Weekend Warrior from montreal, canada

Date Reviewed: February 5, 2007

Strengths:    reeeally smooth nice look adjustable compression , rebound and lock-out

Bottom Line:   
i used this fork for near 3 year , i made about 3500 km a year and i had no problem with this fork i'd like to say to some people that had previously write review on this fork , BUY THE WRIGHT FORK . this is a good cross-country and trail fork . NOT A FREERIDE FORK .

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   bromont, quebec

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $310.00

Purchased At:   bicyclette benjamin

Similar Products Used:   marzocchi z-1 rockshox judy sl

Bike Setup:   marin wildcat trail

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by brian from charlotte,nc

Date Reviewed: March 23, 2006

Bottom Line:   
everyone that i know thats had a manitou shock and has done some serious riding has blown their shocks. its about 50-60 to get it resealed at the shop, but for a shock this expensive - it shouldnt be blowing after 10-15 trail rides.

im 175 pounds fyi...my mani blew on my 5th ride :(
saving up to get a fox

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months


Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Gale VH a Cross Country Rider from Portland

Date Reviewed: August 28, 2004

Weaknesses:    I've owned this shock for about two years. Within the last year it completely stopped functioning. I have two mt. bikes and I am not a jumper. I tend to ride carefuly and take care of my equip. I was very unhappy with its durability. I have a SID and I,ve never had this kind of trouble with it. When the bike shop sent in my "super" they repaired it for free, but within 4 weeks (about 5 rides) the lockout stopped working and I've currently sent it back in for repairs. Try another shock that is more durable!

Bottom Line:   
Try another more durable fork!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   rides in Oregon

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   mail order

Bike Setup:   Ti mt bike frame

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Banks Bourgeous a Cross Country Rider from Provo, Utah, USA

Date Reviewed: June 28, 2004

Strengths:    Smooth and light. Just stiff enough.

Weaknesses:    Could be stiffer but as I list in strengths it is stiff enough.

Bottom Line:   
This fork came with the bike and I was a little worried after reading some of the reviews posted here. After quite a few miles and a trip to Moab I have no complaints with this fork. I find myself bracing for impacts that never happen. Here in Utah my rides usually consist of a couple of hours climbing followed by an all too short downhill. The fairly light weight is nice on the climbs and the fork descends better than I expected. I weigh about 190+camelback and the fork is holding up well. I would recommend this fork to anyone looking for a reasonably light weight good performing all around fork. I see these forks online pretty cheap.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   amasa back

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Bike Setup:   Tomac 98 special pro, xt-756 discs

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Rich Lowery a Weekend Warrior from LaVista, NE, USA

Date Reviewed: November 14, 2003

Strengths:    Adjustability, smooth.

Weaknesses:    Have to dissassemble to change out spring for heavy/light rider (see previous post). The stickers come off fairly quickly.

Bottom Line:   
Still rides great, I would buy another. As a clydesdale racer I'm no weight weenie. I got the air for the adjustability, light weight is just a plus. I love to bunny-hop and the front end is so light it just leaps over logs and off wheelie-drops. I could take the travel adjust knob off for all the use it's getting (you need to adjust air pressure when you adjust travel and I'm not taking my pump out in the middle of a ride). The lockout works great, but other than cruising on the road or a race start it's not worth taking my hands away from steering to mess with. It's just a miserably cold/wet day on my day off. So I thought I'd update my post and tell everyone that my fork's still SUPER. (Even without the stickers)

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Still like Platte

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $300.00

Similar Products Used:   I love to test ride so I've tried most of them.

Bike Setup:   Cannondale Jekyll 600 w/fox float propedal. XT/SRAM mix. Hope/Mavic. Avid Mech Disc.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Dave a Weekend Warrior from Leavenworht

Date Reviewed: November 12, 2003

Strengths:    adjustable air spring, rebound and travel, Lockout,weight,price

Weaknesses:    none so far

Bottom Line:   
I purchsed this Fork because I was bottoming out the Black Comp fork, needed a fork for my wifes bike so I gave her the Comp, and bought the Super Air for mine. I am 270 lb rider on a fairly easy but fast single path with quick down and uphill shoots, some drops, jumps and logs, nothing over 4 feet of air. I Tune to what works for me , not by the suggested book. So far I have yet to bottom the fork on any of the jumps or drops I take. Plush in the small stuff, grabs nice in the corners. The Lockout is not perfectly stiff, about 3/8ths inch of travel when locked out, not noticable when using it. It handles my size just fine, I haven't noticed any unusual amount of sag or diving when breaking or curb jumping. I have no reason at this time to seek out any other forks or change internal settings or springs on the Super Air. I would recommend it to any sport rider .

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $270.00

Purchased At:   Performance Bike

Similar Products Used:   Manitou Black Comp.

Bike Setup:   2003 Jekyll 500 , Fox float R, Avid disk breaks

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by bena from ohio

Date Reviewed: November 7, 2003

Strengths:    weight, plushness once it was tuned right

Weaknesses:    travel adjust location, plastic parts

Bottom Line:   
I got a good deal on this used fork with a frame purchase. I cringed when I read some of the negative reviews-after I had sent the check out. But, to my surprise this has been a great fork. I guess I'm your average joe schmoe mtb'er (185 lbs.), a little single track here and there, some grocery runs, etc. I ride around town alot so the lockout is nice, and if I'm on pavement I can switch the travel w/o getting off, but on the trail that would be sucide, and the stickers came off mine but I think it looks better that way. I had to use more air pressure than the manual recomends- upwards of almost 25% more, but I still haven't gotten over the max air pressure. The rebound is decent, I can defenitaly feel a difference throughout the knobs range of motion, but it still isn't smooth as a marzocchi or fox rebound. The other reviewer was right about the sag, it was a little more than I was used to, but on a bike that wasn't designed for a 120mm fork the shortened fork length is actually nicer. I don't know if I would pay full retail for this fork but for a used fork in the $250 range I would not hesitate to buy it again.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Similar Products Used:   mx comp and z.2, various psylos, old sx-r, etc.


Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:2
Submitted by david a Cross Country Rider from irvine, ca, usa

Date Reviewed: October 28, 2003

Strengths:    smooth ride when it works

Weaknesses:    lock out

Bottom Line:   
The lock out stopped working the first week i owned the fork. Manitou repaired it free of charge. 3 months later the entire fork froze up like a permanent lock out.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jason Worley a Cross Country Rider from Scottsboro, Al. USA

Date Reviewed: October 7, 2003

Strengths:    Light Weight, Good looks, seems to take most of what I have thrown it's way, Stiff & smooth, I like the mini-boots. Adjustable travel & rebound damping (very nice) I never thought I would use it, but I do adjust it a lot.

Weaknesses:    plastic knobs, but remember the weight issue. Seems to settle about 1/2"-3/4" into its travel with very little pressure; not from rider weight. I'm nit-picking really
Having to get off the bike to adjust travel>>I'm so out of shape, thats not really a bad thing, I need the rest..hehe


Bottom Line:   
This review is for the 80-100 travel model. I can't say anything really bad about this fork. Although I did crash & break part of the rebound adjuster knob, even if it was made from aluminum like some other manufacturers, it would have been badly damaged. I think this fork would serve the vast majority of XC riders well. If you are a Huck-ster, Black-diamond rider or down-hiller, STAY AWAY!!!!!!! This is not your baby. The way I see it, even if I have any Manufacturer-related problems out of this fork, Manitou will warranty it for 9 more months. I have e-mailed them with questions & they are quick to respond, so I have faith in them. If you are looking for a good air, adjustable fork, go for it. Why not buy it from your local bike shop, too??? We need those guys!!!
OUT

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Flat Rock on Montesano Mt.

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $299.00

Purchased At:   Colorado Cyclist (with new bike)

Similar Products Used:   2001 Marzocchi Z5 100mm air<---that was a very good cheap fork!!!

Bike Setup:   Black 2003 Ellsworth Truth (Sweet!!!)w/Fox Float R shock, XT drivetrain, Hayes HFX-9, XT hubs on Mavic 317's, Thompson bar, stem & seatpost, Cane Creek S-2 headset, IRC Mythos 2.1, Selle Italia Flite Trans AM saddle, RaceFace good-n-evil grips

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Wilier a Weekend Warrior from Los Angeles

Date Reviewed: September 23, 2003

Strengths:    Smooth travel, ability to lock out

Weaknesses:    plastic knobs, air leaks before I can get the pump unscrewed.

Bottom Line:   
As with everyone else, I was pretty skeptical after reading the reviews. however, at $250, I decided to give it a try. After finishing my first ride (12 miles) I noticed fluid leaking out of the boot on the left leg. I was ready to send it back, but called Answer first and they told me there was only damping fluid in the right leg. The fluid in the left leg is a very thin grease (that goes in the micro-lube ports) and is expected to leak a bit. Told that it does not affect the performance of the shock, but I need to keep the micro-lube greased.

I wonder how many people have returned due to this problem because I was ready to take it back.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with the actual performance of the shock. It was a bit soft, but I'll be tuning that as I get more rides on it. Action was very smooth.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $250.00

Bike Setup:   Trek STP, Ultegra STI, XT/XTR Drivetrain, Avid Ti V-brakes.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Rich a Weekend Warrior from LaVista, NE, USA

Date Reviewed: August 7, 2003

Strengths:    Small bump sensitivity, air/spring combo allows fine adjustments for rider weight.

Weaknesses:    Came with low oil levels. Have to disassemble to change out spring. Stickers on rebound/lockout still rub off. Spring kit manual and owners manual have different installation instructions. This is very confusing. Use the owners manual instructions, they are the correct ones. Also found a large metal shaving in spring-side fork leg when I dissasembled it. Appeared to be from manufacturing process and although it had settled to the bottom did not inspire immediate confidence.

Bottom Line:   
I was VERY leary of forking out this much cash with so many negative reviews. I really wanted the air spring adjustability and the price was right. I have found it hard to find a spring kit that is not too hard or too soft. Out of the box, the Super bottomed easily prompting evasive spring replacement and topping off the oil. If you are a heavier rider and not mechanically inclined then stay away. Yanking the legs off of a brand new fork to replace the spring is not for the weak of heart.
Now that it is adjusted it is hard to wipe the smile off my face when I slide down the trail on this fork. It feels like someone used a bull-dozer to smooth the trails. The small bump sensitivity is astounding. With 120mm of well adjusted travel, I can give a little more work to the front end. I slide forward to a a slightly more neutral position which really helps my control on the whoop-de-do's and big dips.
After a number of test climbs, repeating various sections with different fork adustments. I rarely use the lockout and never use the travel adjust. The fork becomes very stiff when compressed to 100mm and it's a pain to reach the adjuster. Plus, on steep-rooty climbs it works best fully extended so that's were I leave it.
Hopefully, I won't have to post back about this forks reliability. It's performance beats anything I have tried. I stayed away from Fox for cost reasons, but expect it would be comparable. If RockShox had dropped the price a little earlier on the Psylo, I'd be riding an SL. As it is I took a chance, having never ridden this model before. I won big. This fork beats the Psylo on ride quality and the Black Comp on my hardtail feels like no suspension at all in comparison. I don't want to cast aside any of the reliablity issues noticed by other riders. I'm giving it stellar reviews based on my experience only.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Locally - Platte River the new stuff is great!

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $300.00

Similar Products Used:   Cannondale Headshok, 02 Black Comp, Psylo SL, Manitou SX-R, Halson Inversion, Quadra's, Judy's, Mag-21, Marathon

Bike Setup:   Cannondale Jekyll, SRAM/XT mix, 03 100/120mm Super Air Fork, Avid Mech Discs, Hope/Mavic 519's. Hardtail runs the comp and a slightly lighter setup.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by John a Cross Country Rider from Littleton

Date Reviewed: August 6, 2003

Strengths:    Absolutely Nothing! At least my stickers didn't come off though.

Weaknesses:    This is the softest fork I have ever ridden, and I mean a real sponge. Granted, I'm a 190lb agressive rider, but I don't take big drop offs, hits or jumps, and yet I can bottom it out just getting off the saddle and leaning on it with the maximum air pressure of 190 psi and the extra stiff spring, and set at 80 (which other than less travel seems to be noticeably stiffer than the 100 setting). In fact, it bottoms out riding off a curb. It also squeaks and creaks. This 2003 80/100 Black Super Air is a warranty replacement for a 2002 Black 100 Super Air that I rode for 6 months and eventually developed many internal hairline cracks. (I had the same bottoming out issues with last year's model as well and on several 4+ hour rides, 90% of the air would leak out.) At least Manitou (through the good folks at Wheat Ridge Cyclerly) replaced it in less than a week. My biggest issue though, is that this fork has caused me to alter my riding style becasue I have to always back off a bit for fear of it bottoming out and me going over the handlebars on a rocky technical section, and I'm not talking about when I'm hammering (becasue I really can't with this fork), its when I'm negotiating a rocky, slightly inclined, technical section at a slow speed that I fear the endo the most.

Bottom Line:   
This fork sucks. I would recommend this fork to those who only ride paved bike paths and no one else! My only consolation is that most other riders have experienced the same issues. I came to this preduct review looking for advice and I guess I need to get a Fox and spend the big bucks!!!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Everything in Colorado

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   Wheat Ridge Cyclery

Similar Products Used:   Other Manitou and RockShox forks

Bike Setup:   2002 Yeti ASR, full XTR, Mavic 517's

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Carl a Cross Country Rider from Boulder, CO USA

Date Reviewed: August 2, 2003

Bottom Line:   
I've had all the problems you read about below, and what I dislike most is the poor support from Manitou, or at least that is what my LBS reports to me.

I'd just stay clear, why pay for probable unsupported problems?

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by pat a Cross Country Rider from TN

Date Reviewed: July 28, 2003

Strengths:    Stiff, very adjustable, good price, great seals

Weaknesses:    Stickers come off too easily, could use better knobs

Bottom Line:   
not sure about the reason for all the negative reveiws below,(maybe the rockshox sales guys are bored and venting a little) I've been very pleased with the performance of the this fork. First ride was a six hour epic and the black saved me in some hairy spots that would have had me over the bars on my old fork. No problems so far, would buy it again in a heartbeat

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Clemmer, Tsali, Jackson hole

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $299.00

Purchased At:   colorado cyclist

Similar Products Used:   Duke, bomber

Bike Setup:   adept pro, xt/xtr, ust,avid disk, next cranks, eggbeaters

Reviews 1 - 15 (32 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


2005 Manitou Black Super Air SPV Evolve 100mm Oil Level

I am looking for the proper oil level for this shock. The 2005 fork service manual refers me to the 2005 Black service manual for the oil level which I am not able to locate. I have found the oil level for the 2004 SPV (2.9" - 3.0") and the 2006 SPV (2.7"-2.8"), but can't seem to find it for the 2 ... Read More »

Black Mountain Super D Enduro Saturday, October 20th

[B][URL="http://www.racersandchasers.com/Blk_Mtn_Enduro.html"]Racers and Chasers[/URL][/B] is proud to announce the race that every one has been asking for and is located in the heart of beautiful San Diego. The [URL="http://www.racersandchasers.com/Blk_Mtn_Enduro.html"][B]Super D Enduro[/B][/URL] ... Read More »

Free shipping$2.26 Black Super bright 9 bulbs LED flashlight

Free shipping$2.26 Black Super bright 9 bulbs LED flashlight ● Knurled barrel for extra grip ● Long-lasting LED bulbs are power efficient, saving you money on bulbs and excessive batteries! ● Rubber push button on/off ● Three “AAA” batteries not included ● Colors m ... Read More »

Manitou Black Super Air

Hello all, I'm the happy owner of a 2004/2005 (?) Manitou Black Super Air, with 120 mm of travel and the beloved/hated SPV Evolve system (this should mean the fork is a 2005 model). I love the fork, which has served me well for many years; but now it is in need of a service intervention. th ... Read More »

Manitou Black Super Air

Hello all, I'm the happy owner of a 2004/2005 (?) Manitou Black Super Air, with 120 mm of travel and the beloved/hated SPV Evolve system (this should mean the fork is a 2005 model). I love the fork, which has served me well for many years; but now it is in need of a service intervention. th ... Read More »

Read More »



 

Enduro Compare-O

Contests





   

MTBR on Facebook