RockShox Judy XC 97 Front Shock

3.37/5 (158 Reviews)


Product Description

Rock Shox 97 Judy XC


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Reviews 1 - 15 (158 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Malarkey a Weekend Warrior from Tempe, Arizona

Date Reviewed: August 12, 2006

Strengths:    Reliable, still works like it did

Weaknesses:    A little heavier compared to modern xc forks. Damping adjustment does not have much range.

Bottom Line:   
I suppose the only reason someone would appreciate this review now is if they're buying an older used bike. In that case, the fork seams to be in the same condition as it would be new. The fork's coil spring suspension performs better than expected. The damping shock adjustment is fairly useless. Not nearly as plush as modern forks. It surprises me that the Stumpjumper comp doesn't have a higher level fork. A couple years later, they started using the Sid xc, which is much nicer.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Similar Products Used:   headshok p-bone, headshok si

Bike Setup:   1998 Specialized Stumpjumper, xtr/xt, Mavic x221 rims, mythos xc 1.95 tires

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chris Pauluk a Weekend Warrior from Stockton, CA. USA

Date Reviewed: October 1, 2002

Strengths:    Strong and takes a beating..
I traded in the factory fork on my bike (97 Indy S) for this before I bought the bike (97 Klein Pulse Comp..)


Weaknesses:    Adjustability seemed a little touchy...

Bottom Line:   
This fork has lasted me sence 97...
Dam good fork for the money and I never had mine serviced once... Almost 6 years later the cartridge blows out..
Got my moneys worth. Now im tryin a new old stock take off 2001 Judy XC fork I got from ebay..
I figured I had good luck with the 97 Judy series fork.. Hopefully this will make my flat tire feeling front end track again....

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Pleasanton Ridge

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Purchased At:   Livermore Cyclery in Dublin Ca.

Similar Products Used:   Rock Shox Mag 21 (old school)

Bike Setup:   97 Klein Pulse Comp"etition" Chris King hubs, headset, Mavic sunset hoops, xt shimano, kooka, 24 speed converted

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Rat a Weekend Warrior from Carlsbad, Ca

Date Reviewed: April 22, 2002

Strengths:    Light weight, cheap

Weaknesses:    Elastomers suck, fork boots suck, flexy

Bottom Line:   
5 years old and about to die on my bike. When i first got the fork i chucked the elastomers and the boots. Added Eibach springs, White bros wipers, and heavier shock oil. It made a world of difference, night and day. But please compared to a modern fork there is no comparison in terms of stiffness, plushness and price. I just cleaned and lubed the inside of the fork and couldn't get rid of the stiction, i guess the bushings are shot. I am truly amazed that the fork hadn't snapped on me, I have made some moderate drops and horrendous crashes on these toothpicks and they never broke.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Purchased At:   Action Cyclery

Bike Setup:   '97 FSR

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:1
Submitted by captain faceplant a Weekend Warrior from Boise, Idaho

Date Reviewed: March 2, 2002

Strengths:    makes a poor nutcracker due to the round fork legs. also it leaks oil on your nuts. buy this if you need proof of the difference between fork designs.

Weaknesses:    not enough space to express how they suck. I spent about 150 bones repairing this pathetic turd. you'd think they would use a good shock on a $1000 plus bike.

Bottom Line:   
this fork made a good 'bumper' for the front until the oil
cart blew out. bought an expensive machined aluminum replacement for 80 bucks. then the steer tube came loose during a 15 mile race (think FACEPLANT)....I had a shop fix it by hammering a large, ugly, steel wedge into the crown, then grinding away the bottom(the OFFICIAl recommended repair by rock shox). Another $35. I don't ride that much, just a couple of races a year plus training rides. The elastomers also split. Another bike shop tried to get me to blow another 80 bones for a spring kit. They said I was too heavy at 170-180 lbs. This all happened in 2 seasons....I switched to marzocchi and have never looked back. Even the cheap marzocchis are so much nicer! I give the judy two steaming turds because I can now appreciate the difference between good and lousy forks. I can't believe the people that replace every part of this pos for probably $250 and then give it five chilis. Dorks! You can buy a beefy marzocchi z5 for $140 and have a reliable, but simple, fork. Who cares about saving an extra pound if it's always broken and you have to replace it every season?

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   something with dirt

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Purchased At:   local (defunct) shop

Similar Products Used:   Z2, Z5 marzocchi!!!!

Bike Setup:   this fork came on a giant atx 890 that I've since retired. Now have a jamis hardtail frame with marzocchi setup.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Space Cadet a Cross Country Rider from Philadelphia, PA

Date Reviewed: September 18, 2001

Strengths:    Good enrty-level fork; easy to tune and upgade parts are widely availiable.

Weaknesses:    Brakearch is somewhat flexy, plastic parts

Bottom Line:   
These forks require Maintainence. Constant maintainence. Once that has been said, this fork is a good Entry-level fork. Does it flex? Sure, just what you would expect from a Magmnesium alloy casting. The flexing is not excessive, though. Do the elastomers suck? Yep. If you have this fork and you did not upgrade to a set of mountainsprings, I would Highly recommend doing so.

I have ridden 3 seasons on this fork, with no complaints. No rust(?). No broken parts ( believe me, I have tried very hard to break this fork with severe punishment). No Nothing. Sure there are better forks on the market today, but in it's heyday - this fork was THE fork.

I have heard of all sorts of trouble with newer forks on the market, and I am glad I have my Judy.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   The Chief

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $150.00

Purchased At:   ****

Similar Products Used:   Most major, single crown damped designs

Bike Setup:   typical c/c setup - 23lb

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Richie Rich a Cross Country Rider from Wisconsin

Date Reviewed: August 6, 2001

Strengths:    Not a great fork by any means,but MUCH better than the AMP F4 linkage fork that came on my B-4.Adjustable travel(2.5-3.2 in),decent action,and light.Responds extremely well to aftermarket upgrades.

Weaknesses:    Not very stiff--tracking was a big step down from the AMP.The cartriges are unreliable--replace them with the Risse aftermarket units,which are made of aluminum.The elastomers are bad(too weather sensitive).Replace them with Speed Springs.And plastic adjuster caps should never be on forks!!

Bottom Line:   
The '97 Judy is and never was a great fork in its stock form.
..That said,it's a completely different animal with upgraded internals.Ditch the elastomers for Speed Springs for more plushness and better all-weather performance.Then toss in the Risse cartridges,add aluminum adjuster caps,and you have a good,reliable fork that still weighs only a little over 3 lbs.Sure it's a little flexy,but not bad at all by XC standards.And it's worlds better than the scary AMP linkage fork that my B-4 came with!
I sold the AMP back in '98.Right now I'm sitting pretty on my Seven with a Z2 Atom.Let's just say I don't miss the Judy..but I'll give it 3 chilies value(since you have to practically gut the fork and replace half of the internals to make it work well)and 3 chilies overall anyway.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $250.00

Purchased At:   Shop in Chicago

Similar Products Used:   Marzocchi Atom 80,AMP F4,Manitou SX-R

Bike Setup:   Custom Seven

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ricardo Decker a Cross Country Rider from Riverside, CA

Date Reviewed: July 31, 2001

Strengths:    Light weight; Durable; Never need to touch, simply keep clean & ride.

Weaknesses:    Colors are kind of boring from today's standards.

Bottom Line:   
Read my review from 1998. IT STILL APPLIES! I recently sold my bike and the one thing I will sorely miss is that damn shock. It never failed me once. I beat the phuck out of it & it never held a grudge. Such a stiff fork with NO flex. There is no way you could even find one these days but I thought I'd come back to let you know that the shock is durable and still logging the miles, albeit by somebody else. All you haters need to stick to your heavy forks. If you want more travel than this shock provides, just go buy a Buick and leave us XC riders in peace.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Sycamore Canyon

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $199.00

Purchased At:   Riverside Cyclery

Similar Products Used:   Marzocchi

Bike Setup:   Marin hardtail

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Patrick rich a Cross Country Rider from sandy utah

Date Reviewed: April 28, 2001

Strengths:    stiff yet light

Weaknesses:    limited travel, bouncy, plastic knobs, damn it i hate plastic knobs

Bottom Line:   
this will always be the lightest year for judy. after that, she got to eating and got a bit portly, sub 3 pounds. true its only 63 mil of travel, and the dampening cartridge is weak. but an an aswome value. my one big complaint. STUPID CHEESY PLASTIC PARTS THAT BREAK AND GET LOST! i really hate that

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   dog lake

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $275.00

Purchased At:   supergo

Bike Setup:   giant atx boulder with old xtr and costum wheels

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Big Bubba a Cross Country Rider from Elk Grove, CA

Date Reviewed: March 8, 2001

Strengths:    it still works...very well!!!

Weaknesses:    elastomer stacks. speed springs added travel and ride comfort

Bottom Line:   
since riding these, I have never weighed in under 230. I now weigh 260 and these forks just wait for me like a good dog wanting to go for a run. I feel just having me on the bike is punishment enough, but I XC on them and they ride perfect. As for rock shox customer service, they sent me a free pair of shower caps for the fork. not only do they work, but they look coll as hell...oops! i meant heck!!! I swear they look awsome w/out those fat pair of accordians squishn' up and down on them. if you find a pair, tune'm...spring'm...ride'm...you'll love'm.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   as long as its not my garage(trnr)

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $250.00

Purchased At:   bike shop

Similar Products Used:   r/s indy c

Bike Setup:   very well thank you.

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Steve a Cross Country Rider from Massachusetts

Date Reviewed: February 22, 2001

Strengths:    Absorbs stuff

Weaknesses:    Weak, flexy, a toy, ugly.

Bottom Line:   
These were way too weak, they broke at the arch. They were flexy, too. Rock Shox customer service sucks, they only deal with bike shops, as if I don't know anything about my bike. Its understandable to break after 2 years, but now having a real fork (zoke) I know how crappy they feel.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   E. Shore

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Similar Products Used:   Z1 CR, WB FR3,UD150,CDale Lefty

Bike Setup:   hardtail

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chris a Weekend Warrior from New Plymouth, New Zealand

Date Reviewed: December 1, 2000

Strengths:    Strong, plush and cheap take one-helluva beatin' and has good boots on it.

Weaknesses:    Colour,small travell. Thats about it.

Bottom Line:   
Good fork for the money, I jump heaps and these have since yet never faulted. The colour didn't really attract me though.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   WT trails

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Purchased At:   friend

Similar Products Used:   Suntour dc-90, Suntour 7200

Bike Setup:   Avanti Hurricane with 97 rox shox judy xc

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Shawn Kisielius a Downhiller from Ottawa, canada

Date Reviewed: October 17, 2000

Strengths:    I've raced these forks in the national championships (downhill) and they held up amazing! they are so sturdy, I can't believe I haven't snapped them! They're light and good for trials too.

Weaknesses:    Maintaining them, every wet ride I have to lube them up, it is VERY annoying. If I forget to, they begin to corrode inside. I also added my own internals from other shocks and got rid of the elastomer. They don't have enough travel. I'm getting the Rock shox Psylos soon.

Bottom Line:   
Strong!! Took the massive abuse I gave them and when lubed, they work like a charm. Good for trials, but you need to be willing to service them.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Multiple Orgasm

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Purchased At:   friend

Similar Products Used:   indy xc longtravel

Bike Setup:   Stumpjumper Fs m2 metal matrix 521 mavis front and rear front anodized, hayes frond avid 2.0 rear kooka crankset spd's onepiece LX brake lever and shifter (have 2 levers on side with hayes) xtr rear deore front

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Richard a Cross Country Rider from Melbourne

Date Reviewed: September 19, 2000

Strengths:    Call me stupid but I can't find any!

Weaknesses:    Lack of travel
Need for daily servicing
Poor rebound dampening
Poor preload caps
Difficulty of servicing the fork compared with Z1


Bottom Line:   
I really want to know how many Rock-Shox staff have been submitting review recently? If anyone attempts to give the fork a good review because it:
1.can be improved by spending some serious money on aftermarket products (more in total then the cost of a much better fork);or
2.is half decent when it is serviced "at least every 25 hours of use"
then they need a brain scan quickly. What is the point of buying a fork and spending a bucket load of dosh on it to make it work and then saying what a great fork it really is...it is kinda like buying a car and then changing the suspension, engine and brakes and then claiming what a wonderfull piece of machinery it is...Also, yes servicing is neccessary for every moving piece on your bike. However, surely the fact that the Judy XC requires massive amounts of service must not only be a annoyance but also a indication of poor design and manufacturing? Why would anyone buy this fork when there are so many other good forks around that cost less/the same, require less service and work better?





Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $250.00

Similar Products Used:   Z1, Manitou Spyder, Quadra 5, Boxxer


Bike Setup:   Kona, XTR, Race Face

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by G-Man a Cross Country Rider from Cincinnati, OH

Date Reviewed: September 10, 2000

Strengths:    Great fork at a killer closeout price. Can go longer than recommended on the rebuilds. I've put 550 miles on mine this summer and it is still working like butter.

I clean/grease under the boots once a week (or after a wet ride), this seems to make the fork very happy.

Service is easy, takes about 45 minutes.

Great fork on all trail conditions.


Weaknesses:    The hollow damper bolt is fragile. Plastic preload knobs hard to remove (wrenches really mess them up!)

Bottom Line:   
If you can get one on closeout, go for it. Otherwise spend the extra money and buy a new Judy XC by Rock Shox.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $169.00

Purchased At:   Cambria Outfitter

Bike Setup:   GT

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Richard Hutchings a Cross Country Rider from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Date Reviewed: September 8, 2000

Strengths:    Looked quite flash at the time

Weaknesses:    Neccesity of frequent servicing (according to the manual every 15-20 hours of riding);
Stickyness and poor small hit compliance;
Tendency to rust despite servicing.


Bottom Line:   
It looked great and worked OK out of the box. I serviced it 3 times during the year I rode it. Despite the servicing the sealing was obviously not up to scratch and the stanchion tubes rusted. This required a whole new crown and legs to be purchased because Rock Shox Australia had run out of stanchion tubes! (Just a few months later Rock Shox ceased distribution in OZ!!!) It never really worked 1/4 as well as the Bomber I now have and I will never contemplate buying Rock Shox again: especially after my experiance with the Quadra 5!!! I have heard that Rock Shox have lifted their game somewhat since 1998 and attempted to copy the open bath system of the Bomber. It is now a case of too too little too late. Buy the Bomber and get the real thing.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Kew/Mt. Buller

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   Irvine Bike Source

Similar Products Used:   Z-1 Bam (current fork!); Manitou Spyder; Quadra 5.

Bike Setup:   Kona F/S, XTR/XT, Raceface, Z-1 Bam

Reviews 1 - 15 (158 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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


Yet Another 97 Judy XC question....

Looked back on previous posts, didnt find exactly this, If I missed it sumhow, I apologize..... I have a 97 (98?) Rock Shox Judy XC on my Stumpy M2 Comp, got a long elastomer topped by springs down each leg ( from the top ) shock works, is stiff as hell ( i'm 180 and it barely bounces) the ela ... Read More »

Eglund or Total Air conversion kit for '97 Rock Shox Judy XC

Anyone know where I might locate an air conversion kit for a 1997 Rock Shox Judy XC? I've called MRP and a couple of other shops that still had some kits, but none for a 1997. Otherwise, anyone got an older SID or Marzocchi Fly/Atom in good shape that they'd like to sell? Thanks for the he ... Read More »

Diagram for a 97-00 judy xc

Yeah i have a bunch of parts from an older judy xc and im not too sure on how to put it all together... if anyone has a diagram that would be GREATRead More »

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