Uncle Six Pack
a Weekend Warrior
from Bloomsburg, PA, USA
Date Reviewed: June 24, 2010
Strengths: Maxle is great, LSC damping and rebound adjustments are pretty good
Weaknesses: Small-bump sensitivity, a little heavy
This is a really good fork for the money. Anything else nice at 180 mm is going to be really expensive. Unlike the lyric, you can add preload to this spring. The motion control isn't as sophisticated as mission control, but it gets the job done.
For better performance, I recommend trying the fork with the damping shim removed to make the fork more responsive. With the shim removed, the clicker still works the same, but the fork seems better to me. I weigh 165 with a med spring and I still usually have an inch of travel left even with the damper shim removed, so I may go to a lighter spring and then add some preload if necessary.
Bike Setup: 2008 SX Trail with Domain 318 at 180 mm
from santa cruz, california
Date Reviewed: April 11, 2010
Strengths: -Set and forget
-Plush, yet you are able to make it stiffer for those bigger hits.
-Takes abuse and doesn't complain
-180mm of bomb diggity travel
Weaknesses: -A little heavy; but when you're charging down a steep line... does it matter?
-Mixed feelings about the "Maxle 360" quick release. Then again... I've had no need to use it so far!
I've really enjoyed using this fork so far. From hucking off ladders to riding back up in order to go again, this fork is a beast and shows it. I thought the medium-stiff spring would be too much for my weight (130lbs), but once I took it for a few rides I realized it was just right. Couldn't have gotten a better new fork for the money in my honest opinion.
Similar Products Used: Marz Jr T, Fox 40, Fox 36 talas, RS Boxxer, etc
Bike Setup: 2008 big hit fsr 2 with domain and dhx. Mostly stock as of now
a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: June 6, 2009
Strengths: adjustability - compression, rebound and a travel adjustment, very smooth, stiff, meant to handle abuse, completely trouble free so far.
Weaknesses: at 6.5 pounds, its heavy.
After really enjoying the Boxxer and Reba forks, I knew the Domain wouldn't disapoint. I use it for everything from XC rides to lift accessed downhilling. Besides being a little heavy at 6.5 lbs, it's stiff and plush. Point it down any rough bit of trail and it tracks perfectly. The adjustability is great. For climbs I drop the travel to 4 inches, for going down the travel goes back to 6. Also the compression and rebound adjustments are a plus. Forks aren't cheap and this has to be the best long travel single crown for the cash.
Similar Products Used: Marzocchi 66, Rock Shox Boxxer, Manitou Sherman
Bike Setup: Transition Vagrant - SRAM X9, E13 DRS, Thomson stem and seatpost, Maxxis Minion tires, FSA Gap cranks, Hayes brakes
from Rochester Ny
Date Reviewed: February 20, 2009
Strengths: Simplicity, strength,
Weaknesses: 20maxel, adjustability
buy this if your on a budget, it does the job
buy it if your not on a budget and spend your extra cash on other stuff
5 flaming poopies for value since it cant be beat
and 4 overall for lack of adjustments(which IMO is great since its pretty much set and forget)
a Weekend Warrior
from la crescenta, calif usa
Date Reviewed: February 11, 2009
Strengths: Burly 35mm legs, stiffer than normal springs, cheap--I got it on sale (closeout) and its a RockShox which means there are parts for it at your local shop or you can order them.
Weaknesses: Only has the Motion Control and no U-Turn. I don't care for the Maxle 360 quick release.
If you get a year old version you will save a lot of money and I doubt any changes will be noticed on the 2009/2010 models.
Its a rather "dumb" fork with just rebound and Motion Control
so there is very few issues. I like the simplicity and the fact its pretty stiff. I did a 3 foot drop and noticed that the stanchions only measured 4-3/4" movement, it did not bottom out so the springs must be stiff. The long 180mm travel gets shaky on the downhills and the handlebars are harder to manage than if it were a dual crown. I am guessing 180mm has to be the longest they can make a single crown.
I compare this fork to the Marzocchi 66 RC. They are both pretty dumb forks with very little adjustments and the prices are kept low just because of that. Change the springs to softer ones if you want it to be just as cushy as a Marzocchi, but I like stiff myself--you have a better chance of not endo'ing.
The fork is the Totem's little brother and is at home on 7" freeride bikes as well. I dont suggest this fork for bikes with 6" rear travel or less, the height is too just too tall. But for 7-7.5" travel bikes with a rear coil shock its right at home.
Strengths: Stiff, Cheap, Good damping adjustability, Single crown, travel adjustable, relatively low stiction after compressed a few times each ride
Weaknesses: Maxle comes loose if moved - which is very easy to do; very poor small bump sensitivity - no good for dh at all, first few clicks of compression do nothing, harsh damping spikes near bottom-out, no spring available soft enough for my weight:(
At first I thought these forks were real nice when I took them out the box, but even after paying another $110us to have an x-soft spring installed, they are still just too stiff for general riding and they cause my wheel to just bounce off obstacles instead of absorbing them as the low speed sensitivity is bad, nowhere near as good as my Fox Vanilla's.
After 1 year of use I have gotten fed up of lugging round their excessive weight (2.9kg) in return for such irritatingly 'budget' performance, they are very harsh at the end of their travel on big hits too and I have hurt my wrists because of this on relatively small jumps.
Most recently, the rebound damping has given up and they have top-out 'clunk' no mattter what setting - 1 year on and I'm getting rid of them - I can't help but be reminded every time i ride them, that I should have just shelled out the extra dough and got some Fox 36's, which I'm now goona try!
These forks are more than adequate for an occasional freeride sesh, but just fall short for anyone who demands real performance from their products.
Strengths: Price, single crown, stiff, plush, maxle 360
Weaknesses: none really but if I must, heavier than totem...
Wow, for $310 new, I can't believe this fork. Feels almost as good as my Boxxer Race. Definitely better than my All Mountain. Similar, controlled feel of the PIKE/RVL. But when you push it, it feels like a nice DH fork. Compression damping is a nice touch. Rebound works well, as all other RS forks lately. Sure, it's not glamorous like higher priced forks but for $300, heck even for $600, the performance is outstanding!!! I recommend this fork to anyone who wants a single crown that performs. Saves you $$$ to boot.
a Weekend Warrior
from Ocala, FL, USA
Date Reviewed: May 5, 2008
Strengths: very plush fork, there is a big range of compression and rebound adjustment. Not too expensive
Weaknesses: Stock spring is a little light for jumping and drops but would be good for downhill
Awesome fork. with the compression all the way out it feels very linear like a dh fork but when you turn it up it gets a lot more progressive which is better for jumps and drops. I would recommend getting a stiffer spring if you plan to jump it tho. The Maxel design is great too. A very good fork for the money.
Bike Setup: Specialized big hit spec with romic rear shock
Date Reviewed: November 10, 2007
Strengths: Stiffness, travel, looks, maxle 360
Weaknesses: Lacks the adjustments of the higher range forks, yet i don't feel that i need them. Could use preload adjust, changing spring is only option.
Well for this price, the fork is unbelievable. Equally as plush as 66s and boxxers (very similar feel). For 180mm of single crown travel, the feel incredibly stiff, and the maxle 360 is genius. You still get compression adjustment which goes from fully open to near lock-out, and rebound adjustment. The only downside is that to get the right spring rate, a spring change is the only option, although the standard springs will suit a lighter rider like me who is looking for a slightly stiffer 'freeride' feel, or a weightier rider who is looking for a plusher DH feel. i've given them 4 chilis due to the lack of the adjustments that are available on more expensive forks, though i don't feel the need for them, the fork works incredibly, it makes no sense as to why it costs so little.
I just bought a 05 kona stinky with a 318 on the front. It's really harsh and feels like its impossible to get past the first 2-3 inches of compression. Any ideas what this could be? Surely it's not normalRead More »
I have a 318 Domain (2011 - fixed @ 180mm travel) , I was offered a trade with a Boxxer Ride (2007 ?? - u-turn 130-178mm travel). Also the trader states that he bought it new in 2009. As far as I know, they stopped making them in 2006. He also says he noticed a little oil residue near his motion con ... Read More »
An online seller over here has a RS Domain 318 180mm travel for for sale, and it he claims it has the Mission Control damper in it, he even has the Mission control sticker on the fork. I was under the impression that you couldn't fit one in the Domain due to the internal diameter of the steel stanch ... Read More »
Ok so I have a working brand spanking new domain 318 and I'm also getting a lyrik from a friend of mine. It has been ridden hard and seals are blown out and stanchion scratched and beat to he'll lowers. I also have a new lyrik upper coming in the mail as well. So I was wondering if anyone knew what ... Read More »