Marzocchi Marathon S 2003 Front Shocks

4.67/5 (15 Reviews)
MSRP : $499.00


Product Description

- 105mm Travel (85mm optional)
- Open Bath HSCV Cartridge
- Dual Coil Springs
- NEW! Cryofit Boltless ’M’ Crown
- NEW! 1-Piece Mg MonoLite Sliders
- NEW! [ETA] External Travel Adjuster
- External Preload & Rebound Control
- 30mm Aluminum Stanchions


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Reviews 1 - 15 (15 Reviews Total)

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by roxy smith a Weekend Warrior from united kingdom

Date Reviewed: August 1, 2005

Strengths:    really sexy

Weaknesses:    they can run abit

Bottom Line:   
really very good stockings much better than pantyhose

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $1500.00

Purchased At:   fredericks of hollywood

Similar Products Used:   pretty polly hanes wolford

Bike Setup:   6 strap suspender belt

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Fritz Lehr a Cross Country Rider from Carrboro, NC, Orange Co

Date Reviewed: April 25, 2005

Strengths:    Very plush, reliable, low maintenance, doesn't flex, seals don't leak, eta works great and better than other lockout devices and looks great.

Weaknesses:    Wish it were lighter and can bob a bit on a climb, but I would not trade performance to have it lighter or bob less. I found that if you shift weight to back of the bike, it really bobs very little if at all.

Bottom Line:   
This is a great I don't want to touch it and just ride fork. It needs virtually no maintenance except for occasional oil change. The seals never leak and forks don't get any plusher. It absorbs everything small and large. I really like the Fox Vanilla, but it was not quite as plush and the seals seemed to leak oil, but I think all of them do that. If it were not for this fork, I would probably be on a Fox, but this is just a notch above Fox in my opinion.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   CHHS Trails

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   Supergo

Similar Products Used:   Fox Vanilla 125R, Marzocchi Atom 80, Duke XC, Marzocchi Superfly, Marzocchi Z1

Bike Setup:   Blur with Shimano XT triggers and 4 piston discs, XTR Rims and disc rotors, Thompson stpost, Easton Mag Stem, Answer Carbon bar.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by csainthenry from Bloomington, IN

Date Reviewed: October 28, 2004

Strengths:    Smoooth, plush, pretty light, and quite stiff for an XC race fork. I like the coil springs better tan air shocks.

Weaknesses:    the external adjustments seem to have minimal effects on the ride quality, but I love it set up how it is, so not really a prob...Also the ECC lever has come loose a few times, which is inconvenient when you crest a climb and can't unlock your fork for the descent.

Bottom Line:   
A great fork, don't think I'd pay $500 for it, but it is definitely the best fork that I have ever ridden. With normal maintenance, it may last forever.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   eBay

Similar Products Used:   Sid SL, X-Fly 80, Manitou SX-R, MOZO air fork


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by b dog a Cross Country Rider from dogtown, CA, USA

Date Reviewed: April 19, 2004

Strengths:    stiff, plush and adjustable. the ETC is great for climbing. you don't have to get off the bike and spin dials, just flip a swith, push down and voila, you're good to go....very cool!

Weaknesses:    not superplush (i guess that could be a word) on very small bumps--so what.....

Bottom Line:   
very nice fork. steers well, and takes bumps well, especially at speed. I am faster downhill than on my old fork. I am a bit fresher after riding because i am less beat up because my ride is now smoother. This fork is way better than anything i have ever owned before. marzocchis are sweet! Five chilis.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   any single track on dirt

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $317.00

Purchased At:   superho

Similar Products Used:   manitou super six, rock shox judy c, rock shox psylo

Bike Setup:   gt i - drive with, fox float, syncros, deore-xtr, velociraptor tires, etc....

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Mike from Jacksonville, FL

Date Reviewed: February 15, 2004

Strengths:    Price ('03 closeout), durability,...name says it all.

Weaknesses:    A tad heavy...

Bottom Line:   
Just had my first ride this morning on my new Marathon-S. WOW...what a difference and what a smooth fork...like but-ta. I do have to say that it is SUPER quiet and compresses nice. It soaks up the rough stuff really well. However, the verdict is still out on the overall rebound control.

The rebound is not as tight as I prefer, but hoping once it really breaks in I'll get used to it. If anything, I could probably go with a heavier weight oil to fine tune it. Also, the little screw/adjuster on top is super soft and without a perfect size flat-head screwdriver to turn the thing, I can see it getting chewed up pretty quick.

ETA is pretty neat too. I can see myself enjoying this fork for a while.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Similar Products Used:   Rocksux Judy SL


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by bikerx40 a Cross Country Rider from Boise, ID

Date Reviewed: January 29, 2004

Strengths:    Smooth consistent damping, ETA is great for super steep climbs or road climbs, Reliable design, HSCV is nice on bigger hits.

Weaknesses:    ETA knob broke (I replaced with a modified chain link), Poor instruction manual doesn't include rebuild instructions or other critical info., Wish that the cartridge was user servicable / tunable (I'd like to adjust the shim stacks like Manitou TPC style), Disc tabs could be better formed - less paint and less interference with Avid Mech adaptors (doesn't sit flush without a little work with a file).

Bottom Line:   
I really am impressed with my '03 Marzocchi Marathon S. I've owned quite a few suspension forks over the years, but this one tops them all. The damping performance is one of the best I've come across, right up there with the Fox Forx Vanilla series. That being said, it doesn't have the same stiffness as the Fox Forx due to the Marzocchi's smaller 30mm stanchions. The only time that I even notice any deflection is during hard braking (I have discs) on pavement I can see just the slightest movement backwards- but it's very slight. If you're a bigger rider, then you might opt for either the Fox Forx Vanilla or a Marzocchi Z-1 SL or something.

I was pretty bummed by the lack of descent information about this fork. Marzocchi doesn't have an instruction manual for rebuilding the fork or doing routine maintenance. I would up making my own web site with oil-change instructions and FAQ's to help out other riders who have encountered this lack of info. I'm not promoting or selling anything, just an enthusiast who appreciates nice equipment. For my tuning information, check out: http://myweb.cableone.net/rkindig/marz_marathon_s.html

I wasn't getting full travel from my fork out of the box. Apparently, Marzocchi Marathons now come with Heavy weight springs for riders in the 180-220 range. I only weigh around 165, so I wound up buying the Medium springs. The fork is far more responsive now, and I am getting all of the travel.

I'm a bit disappointed that Marzocchi doesn't allow access into their cartridges. I'd like to mess around with the damper's shim stacks inside to better match the damping to my rear suspension. My wish list would be to have user-serviceable shim stacks like my Manitou TPC fork had.

I recommend this fork for aggressive trail riders needing a reliable coil-sprung fork. However, Riders over 200 pounds might opt for a Marzocchi Z1 SL (same weight).

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Hard Guy

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $300.00

Similar Products Used:   Scott Unishock, Manitou 1, 1994 Cannondale Headshock,97 Rock Shox Judy XC,95-97 Rock Shox Judy SL
Noleen Expert Aluminum (Girvin Style), White Brothers SC-70UL, Marzocchi Z-1 BAM, Manitou SX-Carbon


Bike Setup:   Turner XCE - Vanilla RC Rear Shock - Marzocchi Marathon S fork - Avid discs -WTB Lazerdisc Lite Hubs - Mavic 317 rims - Ritchey WCS Stem - Raceface LoRise Bars - Thompson post - XT Drivetrain - Speedplay Pedals - Panaracer Fire XC 2.1 tires.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Blake a Cross Country Rider from Alameda, CA, USA

Date Reviewed: January 17, 2004

Strengths:    ETA system

Weaknesses:    none

Bottom Line:   
This was the best upgrade I could have ever made to my bike without buying a whole new bike. I will be buying a full suspension bike this spring, but want to keep this bike as a light racer. This shock has made a world of difference. Everyone is always talking "fox" this and "fox" that. Sure, if you want sell you left arm to afford one. Otherwise, Marzzochi is the way to go. I love the ETA system.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $400.00

Purchased At:   LBS

Similar Products Used:   RockShox Sid

Bike Setup:   TREK 8000 SLR

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Brian Nicholson a Cross Country Rider from Friendsville, Tennessee

Date Reviewed: November 18, 2003

Strengths:    Stiff, smooth, ETA is the best lockout I have tried, Subtle looks once decals are removed

Weaknesses:    Polished crown doesn’t look very good after it tarnishes, if sweat collects on the top caps adjustment controls can corrode and not work.

Bottom Line:   
I chose this fork for Marz. Durability, coil smoothness, and the ETA lockout and was not disappointed. I have found it to be the perfect fork for my Single Speed. The ETA works far better than other manufacturer’s lockouts dropping the front end and still giving a little action. I can’t tell much difference in action or stiffness between this fork or the Foxes on my other bikes. I have had problems with both the rebound control and the eta control seizing up from salt deposits caused by my sweat collecting between the shafts and the top caps. I really like the tune-ability of this fork with varying oil heights. My Fox forks only work with 1 oil height where as the Marz you can play with for different feels. The polished crown has developed a pitted dull look over time, I have tried to polish it up again but ran out of elbow grease.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Thunder Rock Express

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $400.00

Purchased At:   Mile High Cyclry

Similar Products Used:   Manitou 2, R.S. Juddy SL, Marz. Z2, Marz Z1, Marz. X-Fly, Fox Vannilla, Fox Float

Bike Setup:   2003 Dean Colonel Single Speed

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Tom Boardman a Cross Country Rider from Oakland, CA USA

Date Reviewed: October 1, 2003

Strengths:    White-pearl with blue letters looks good with my orange/blue frame; once I dialed it in it handles very well; range of adjustability makes big changes in riding style; easy to turn on lock out feature; very plush landings off baby jumps; holds corners well; feels solid.

Weaknesses:    Way heavy (4 lb, 8 oz out of the box), in fact a lot heavier than I expected even though its a coil fork; when lock out is on, the fork rattles when climbing off road. No rattle on asphalt climbs, but on long fire trail climbs a constant rattle drives you bonkers; stickers already look like they may come off; when you turn the quick release it also turns the spring stiffness adjustment.

Bottom Line:   
I just built up my dream bike and wanted an all around fork that I could ride bumps and rocks with, but also race on from time to time. This bike is fast, but the fork is definitely not for short, fast XC races. It would be perfect for the Downievile Classic (2 to 3 hour, 30 mile classic MTB race) or any of the new Euro-endurance events that will eventually make their way to the US. In fact, the fork is named Marathon after these long point-to-point races. For the price ($379) and the sweet plush ride I give it 5 value rating. For the weight and rattling lock out, I give it 4 overall rating.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Soquel, Boggs, Tamarancho

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $379.00

Purchased At:   Jensen

Similar Products Used:   Rock Shox Judy SL, Manitou.

Bike Setup:   Better than yours (Sycip Unleaded, Chris King hubs and headset, SRAM X.0, XTR cranks, XT Discs)

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Ian a Racer from british columbia, canada

Date Reviewed: June 17, 2003

Strengths:    Much better lockout than 2002 marathon. More plush and just an all around nicer ride than the air version.

Weaknesses:    Heavy for Marz's "racing" line. Oil wasnt filled to correct level when purchased.

Bottom Line:   
This is a great fork. I love to ride and race it although its a tad on the heavy side for a racing fork. I wouldnt recommend this (or the marathon SL) to a hardcore racer because of the weight, but if you arent too worried about the weight go for it. The lockout is a great improvement from the 2002 version although rock shox has a remote lockout on their top of the line forks and reaching down to disengage the lockout while racing is a royal pain in the ass.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   Simons Bikes

Similar Products Used:   2002 marathon, 2001 Z2, 1999z4

Bike Setup:   99 rocky mountain oxygen, Sram 9.0/XT,race face components.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Dave a Cross Country Rider from Miami

Date Reviewed: June 10, 2003

Strengths:    Supple, Stiff, Great Looks, Marzocchi Quality

Weaknesses:    None so far

Bottom Line:   
If you want a plush and durable all-purpose fork this is it! It's not too heavy, it's stiff, and its a Marzocchi, so it's built to last. The ETA is awesome when you have a long climb or fire road, though I must admit that in Miami that does'nt really exist. Spend your hard earned money on this fork, don't bother with the Fox Forx, they are promising but haven't seemed to sort it out yet. Marzocchi has been making high quality suspension for a long time, they know what they are doing. I've ridden many types and levels of forks on my bikes and my friend's bikes, and I have nothing but praise for Marzocchi COIL sprung forks. Their air forks are not as smooth.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $400.00

Purchased At:   Bell Bikes

Similar Products Used:   Rock Shox Judy, Marzocchi '02 MXC w/ECC, Manitou X-Vert, Marzocchi Z2 Atom 80

Bike Setup:   '03 S-Works Enduro with XTR/XT components

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chris Herraghty a Cross Country Rider from Edinburgh, Scotland

Date Reviewed: April 16, 2003

Strengths:    Super Plush, stiff compared to other cross country forks, look sweet. Lockout is great for climbing.

Weaknesses:    Lockout has become really stiff, lever screw comes undone!


Bottom Line:   
The action is sooooo sweet, super plush and stiffer than any RockShox I've tried. Rebound control is easy to adjust, don't need to constantly pump them up!! Only thing I found was the lockout lever came loose, so I tightened it up quite hard, but now the lever is very stiff to move.
Still, I'm not too bothered, absolutely amazing fork.
I would recommend this for lightweight (ish) bikes that still want sweet performance without too much added weight.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Glen Tress, Borders

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $440.00

Purchased At:   www.ChainReactionCycles.com

Similar Products Used:   RS Judy XC 1996, Manitou Magnum

Bike Setup:   Trek 8000 frame, Avid Mech. Discs, XT drivetrain, Easton bars and bits, Mavic/hope wheels.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Joe a Cross Country Rider from Ham Lake, MN, USA

Date Reviewed: April 3, 2003

Strengths:    Rigidity,Smoothness,and appearance. The paint job does no justice until you see it in person.

Weaknesses:    weight

Bottom Line:   
This fork not only looks excellent, but I didn't realize what I was missing out on. The marathon completly blows the rockshox out of the water! The travel is buttery smooth, the fork doesn't flex like the RS. The adjustablity is out of this world (there is actually rebound control)and the action makes the RS feel like a kid's toy. Anyone who rides a RS and has never tried a Marzocchi is missing out on a completly different ride! Your local trails will become like new again. You will actually look for things to run over just to feel the fork do it's work!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Milaca

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   Local Bike Shop

Similar Products Used:   Too many rockshox judy SL's

Bike Setup:   '00 schwinn homegrown factory,xtr,raceface,spinergy spox

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Mark Overby a Cross Country Rider from Chapel Hill, NC, US

Date Reviewed: January 29, 2003

Strengths:    Steers great, super plush, ETA lockout works great, low maintenance, sweet looks

Weaknesses:    a little heavy-much more than claimed weight

Bottom Line:   
This by far the best cross country fork I have ever ridden -and I've ridden a bunch. This fork tracks like it is on rails, the travel feels bottomless, and I would take the extra weight any day over a whippy super-light fork. I would recommend this fork to nay rider who is looking for a solid performing, easy to maintain cross country fork.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   any technical trail

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   Employee purchase

Similar Products Used:   Z2Atom 80, Manitou Black Elite, Manitou SX Ti

Bike Setup:   IF Deluxe, XTR, Hayes discs

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Glen Padgham a Cross Country Rider from Surrey, UK

Date Reviewed: January 26, 2003

Strengths:    Lovely build quality, nice Italian styling, coil for plushness and reliability, ETA is great.

Weaknesses:    On the heavy side, not that that makes much difference.

Bottom Line:   
The business. Great. They really eat up the rough stuff with such a smooth action. The ETA is a great innovation - flick it on and the rebound is effectively locked-out - so then the fork compresses but doesn't rebound, settling down to a lower height. You still get at least 30mm of suspension even when ETA is on. Flick the switch at the top of the hill (whilst riding, no problem) and you instantly get you 105mm back ready for the next down.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   "Three Hills"

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $285.00

Purchased At:   That's £ Sterling - mail order, Merlin

Similar Products Used:   Original Z2 Bombers

Bike Setup:   Kona Explosif - Columbus Max Steel hard tail.

Reviews 1 - 15 (15 Reviews Total)

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


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