Mtbr's 2016 Winter Biking Gear Reviews and Roundups





Halson Shock Front Shock

4.18/5 (33 Reviews)

Product Description

Halson Inversion

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Reviews 1 - 15 (33 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Joey a Cross Country Rider from United Kingdom

Date Reviewed: February 16, 2005

Strengths:    Ten years use and still rockin'. Solid as a rock. Easy to maintain. Tough. the only forks ever to give a ride as precise as solid forks.

Weaknesses:    Spares availability, none neaded so far except elastomers, but these days I've got a home shop :)

Bottom Line:   
I've had the Inversions for over ten years. For the last six my new daughter has limited my activity :(

They transformed my riding. They have been up and down mountains all over England, Scotland and Wales. They went up and down Snowdon and Cader Idris. I solo'ed the PORC track in Kent once. They had a 12' ramp straight down and up a 4' jump ramp into space at the start of one of the runs. I am not abig air junkie, but I took that ride three times, the halsons bottomed on landing, but no damage. This is a light X-C bike not an engine-free moto-X downhiller! They are great.

I love these forks and when they die I shall cry.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $90.00

Purchased At:   Forgotten

Similar Products Used:   I've tried almost all the forks going - my brothers both raced Downhill on huge things for years. Before they got into heacvy bikes they had cross country machines with various sets of forks. They were always jealous of the inversions precision ride, but complained of lack of travel.

Bike Setup:   Ancient DBR set up as light as I can afford. Weighs less than my first 'racer' even with the halsons on.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ray a Weekend Warrior from Antioch CA

Date Reviewed: December 3, 2004

Strengths:    Did I say stiff. Little to no flex
I can stand my 200pd body on my bike and kick ass uphill or on the fly
Easy Maintenance
All Black Color

Weaknesses:    Spare Parts
Halson has been out of business >5 years

Bottom Line:   
Purchased the fork brand new two years ago on ebay and it just sat in my garage until MAY 04. Had some problems with the judy tt I had on my bike so I decided to install this classic fork on my rig . The fork elastomers were stock and set up for a 150-170pd rider, but I heard from the grape vine some time ago that old answer elastomers would work in the fork. So I went on a manhunt a low and behold I found bike shop with a ton of elastomers of every durometer for dirt cheap. Wow, what a difference I can set up how much spring I want depending on the temperature outside (Cold-softer elastomer set-up Hot-harder elastomer set-up.

The fork tracks where I point it. I could never fly on single-tracks with the judy but the halson allows me to just breeze through. The fork fits my style of riding but is not suitable for jumping or freeriding. What fool would jump with 2 inches of travel anyway?

Before I installed the fork I serviced it. What a breeze remove the brake brace hex screws, remove the rubber boots carefully (so far mines are holding up well, I just made sure I used sufficient silicone sealant where the brake brace enters the boot slot), grease, put back together add elastomers.

I will try and keep this fork alive as long as I can that the forks of today (2004) are flexy and pogo like. I'm probably the only guy in the country riding on this fork. What a feeling. Live life

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Black Diamond Mines

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   LBS

Similar Products Used:   manitou 3,judy tt

Bike Setup:   Gary Fisher Wahoo, LX derailleurs, LX brakes and levers,Titec stem, Bont crowbar handlebars,lx shifters, deore crank, xt chain, xt bb,rocky mountain pedals, sram 9.0 cassette, speed v saddle, mavic rims, irc and ritchey tires 2.1

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by ROGER BURBANK a Cross Country Rider from VANCOUVER

Date Reviewed: November 14, 2002



Bottom Line:   

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   CORKSCREW

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $450.00

Purchased At:   COVE

Similar Products Used:   OLD MAG 21


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Tom Manseau a Cross Country Rider from Southborough, MA

Date Reviewed: March 12, 2002

Strengths:    Simplicity. Light weight. Ease of service.

Weaknesses:    Company is out of business

Bottom Line:   
I wrote a review in '97 and stick by it today. The unit has performed flawlessly. The design works perfectly. Judys all suffered from a fatal flaw: lateral flex. The other new forks I've tried have been unimpressive, e.g.: S.I.D., Manitous, or Marzocchis. They're either too flexy, too limited in speed range, too heavy, or WAY too expensive. $700?! For a fork?
I applaud the people who admitted that eventually ALL things will fail under enough abuse. Always check your bike for cracks or loose parts. You just might save yourself a whole lot of aches and pains.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Similar Products Used:   Rock Shock Mag-20, Marzocchi B2 Bomber, Lawill Leader(by Control Tech - JUNK)

Bike Setup:   Currently on my old Fat Chance, but seriously considering putting it on my Schwinn Sweet Spot full suspension frame.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by jo jo a Downhiller from australi

Date Reviewed: June 10, 2001

Strengths:    none

Weaknesses:    all

Bottom Line:   
it is bad

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   jojo kango

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $999.00

Purchased At:   izzi's kangorama

Similar Products Used:   rst 182

Bike Setup:   team dh and halson, with 10 inch prototype discs? welded on to halson

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Eric a Cross Country Rider from Fort Dodge, IA, USA

Date Reviewed: May 2, 2001

Strengths:    I bought this fork something like 4.5 years ago, and havent had a day of trouble with it. It really is very good for the $$, don't get me wrong, there are way better forks out there, but with the lack of maintenance involved with this fork, it's been great!

Weaknesses:    Not a plush fork by anymeans, nor any rebound adjustments, kind of like a pogo stick at times.

Bottom Line:   
All you gotta do to this baby is put some teflon based lube on her elastomers every now and then, to keep them from drying out and cracking. That's all! You can't buy these anymore, and that shows how far the suspension tech. has progressed in 5 years, but if you bought one 5 years ago and haven't touched it since, it probobly works just fine, like mine.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Lief Erickson

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $150.00

Purchased At:   Local Bike Shop In Portland

Similar Products Used:   Rock Shox Judy LT

Bike Setup:   Fuji Suncrest (steel is real!) With deore lx/xt set up.

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:4
Submitted by tommy a Racer from Bellingham WA, USA

Date Reviewed: January 6, 2001

Strengths:    very lightweight and tracks nearly perfect lines on fast descents. No crappy oil seals, no oil at all!! a big plus in wet conditions. Inexpensive and easy to maintain. A good fork for medium weight and not very aggressive riders.

Weaknesses:    What the h*** is up with the glue-together constuction?! I haven't seen a poorer desing before, ever! This fork works great until you attempt to land a two-foot drop and the fork leg comes UNGLUED from the top brace. Seriously, there are threads on the legs and everything, but they're just glued yo the top brace! The upper leg simply slid down the lower leg and thewhole thing snapped off. Like it was slow motion--I didn't actually go down until ten feet after the landing. What the h***! Also, not a lot of travel.

Bottom Line:   
Works great until it completely falls apart. I was a fan until yesterday. A great design, but no wonder the company went out of business. Oh, and good luck finding any parts for them.
Also note though, I am not a small rider and I do ride HARD. At 190 ibs is there anything that won't break? Well, haven't had any problems with my Super 8 yet.
I would recommend a sid, straight out, or a marzocchi.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Fast, techy xc--FAST!

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $100.00

Purchased At:   used, friend at local shop

Similar Products Used:   Bomber z3 and z1, Rock Shox SL and 100.

Bike Setup:   Training bike: KHS team aluminum frame with mismatch parts--race face cranks, syncros BB/stem/post, chris king headset/hubs, xtr der's, etc.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by tim a Weekend Warrior from cincinnati, ohio

Date Reviewed: April 1, 2000

Strengths:    super rigid,
short travel good for slow technical/ trials stuff
quick, springy rebound
simple, low maintenance design

Weaknesses:    short travel not good for really high speeds
hard to get spare parts
offset crown on first-generation forks slows steering
stiffens up in the cold
no fancy adjuster knobs

Bottom Line:   
i used the old, black halson on my khs for over three years. my fork had some trouble just as halson was going out of business, but i found the owner ofthe company's e-mail address and he got me up and running on no time. the old fork is great for trials, the short travel and simple design are good for bouncing. the fork also lacks preolad adjusters, but that's fine because the elastomers pop out in no time flat. the brake brace and crown are both cast (which i see as a definite weakness), but at least the crown isn't gutted from the bottom, (like a rs, manitou, or marzocchi) which creates a huge weak spot. the only real problem i had was that the offset of the fork was in the crown, which slowed steering a bit.
i use the newer (but still old- 1996) fork on my litespeed. it doesn't have external adjustment, but again, disassembly could hardly be simpler. all the different pieces on the fork are cnc machined. the stanchions are 34.9mm in diameter, bigger than a marzocchi or white bros. the machining is amazing- 3D internal and external butts (wall thickness tapered not just along the length of the tube) as well as some impressive rounded edges. smooth, incredible workmanship. the fork brace is a .75in diam alum tube mandrel bent into an arch. it is the stiffest fork brace i have ever used. a booster really isn't necessary. the air damping on the fork is super simple, speed sensitive, and has no moving parts (there is a stationary valve inside the fork that slows the movement of air when the fork compresses- no seals). i think it works really well. the only fault i have with this fork is that it has an aluminum steerer. but the inner diameter is so great that you have to use a 1inch star-fangled nut- a 1 1/8 won't fit. burly. an innivative design that got pushed aside in favor of more easily mass-produced designs.
i will miss this fork when it finally dies.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Similar Products Used:   mag21, judy sl, manitous, etc

Bike Setup:   khs team 95, litespeed obed

Overall Rating:4
Submitted by Jason a cross-country rider from Berkeley, CA

Date Reviewed: August 11, 1997

Bottom Line:   

Smooth fork with excellent handling. Way better than Rokshits or manitous. No complaints besides a complete lack of customer service. I need a new steertube and think that I might be pretty much #$@. Anyone out there have access to a 1 1/4 threaded tube for a Halson? The threads on mine are shot.

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Kris Bagdasarian a weekend warrior from Southington, CT

Date Reviewed: May 22, 1997

Bottom Line:   

This is truly a remarkable fork. It is much smoother that ANY other elastomer fork. Also, it takes the big hits as well as most air/oil shocks, but doesn't require the maintainance thereof. I've had it 3 years and still have all the original boots. Easy to adjust, tune, and maintain. It's also very strong at the crown, which makes it almost as stiff as a rigid fork!

Overall Rating:1
Submitted by Cameron Smith a weekend warrior from Palo Alto, California

Date Reviewed: April 12, 1997

Bottom Line:   

I had these one month before they bent. And it wasn't during a crash, but from heavy riding. Both legs buckled behind the fork crown which rendered the fork useless. Halson's customer service is undeniably the worst. The forks are mad in Taiwan and the construction is poor. I've now ridden Control Tech Leader 3's for a year and feel they are far superior. Made in the USA also. I've dealt with their customer service also, and it was a pleasing experience. Never again a Halson.

Overall Rating:4
Submitted by J Boeker a cross-country rider from Canberra, Australia

Date Reviewed: April 9, 1997

Bottom Line:   

Very plush, durable and low maintenance fork that still competes (1994 model) with new technology and looks great.The best facet must be their versatility over trail shock and big bumps and ease of adjustment.Unfortunately they don't get the 5 star rating as the boots have deterorated faster than expected and the spare parts service here is not well developed since they were introduced with a bang.

Overall Rating:4
Submitted by dave hansen a cross-country rider from Newport, R.I.

Date Reviewed: March 30, 1997

Bottom Line:   

awesome. better than anything else we'vve ridden in R.I. only problem is maintainance. We ride a lot mud and grit and it seems to be wrecking the seals

Overall Rating:3
Submitted by Nick Grba a weekend warrior from Tacoma WA

Date Reviewed: March 22, 1997

Bottom Line:   

I've ridden about 150 miles on my Halson fork,and can say that its a low-tech, simple setup fork. The main reason I bought it is its beefy,flex-free performance.The upside-down design is terrific for heavier people. They just need to update its internals (nobody makes aftermarket parts for it,either.)
The elastomers are'nt very supple; basically like an old Manitou fork.The travel is just under 2.I would'nt mind selling it to buy a fork with more travel and more supple travel.

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Rob Info a cross-country rider from Downingtown, PA

Date Reviewed: March 22, 1997

Bottom Line:   

I have been riding a Halson PDS for about six months now, so far the fork has provided excellent performance. Initially I had some trouble with water contamination in one leg, but I finally determined the problem was a small tear in the boot. Since the fork has no wiping seals on the legs, it is critical that the integrity of the boots be maintained. Coming from a softride stem, this fork is a definite improvement in handling and descending. From what I can tell from other riders bikes, the Halson has a much higher quality feel to it (Judys and Mach 5s feel sticky and loose in comparision). This fork is sweet.

Reviews 1 - 15 (33 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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