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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

First post here, long time reader.

I've been riding for about 6 years and just came into possession of a stock 11' Rockhopper comp 29er. I love everything on it but the fork is terrible (80mm suntour xcr) and am looking for some suggestions for a a new/used fork.

I ride XC mostly and am looking for a 100mm air fork, ideally with some form of motion control. I was hoping to keep it around 300 dollars - is that realistic?

A few forks I've been keeping an eye out for:

RS Reba on ebay :)
RS Tora Race
RS Recon gold/silver
Manitou Tower Expert
Manitou Minute

I'd love to hear any ideas, thoughts or suggestions.

PS - I often hear suggestions of selling the bike and upgrading at this price level. However, this frame fits me so well (23") I intend on keeping it and upgrading the wheel set and fork. So i'm keeping it :)


Bicycle tire Tire Bicycle frame Wheel Bicycle wheel rim

7,670 Posts
Tower expert is an awesome fork for $300new, seen deals as low as $250 recently. Hell for that matter u may even be able to come across a tower pro for $300 (might be too late in the season for that kinda deal but still possible).

Reba used wouldn't be bad as long as its in good shape. Great fork. Recon airs are good too just a bit heavier than tower expert/pro or Reba.

Any of them will be a huge upgrade over ur current fork. OR, and I stress this cause u can get an awesome fork deal, suntour upgrade program. Not sure exactly how the matter works if u buy a used bike but doubt it matters much.

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15,284 Posts
A 23" frame will benefit from a stiff front end with 15mm thru-bolt or 9mm DT RWS FlowEx wheel.

SR Suntour Epicon x1 DS RL RC 15QLC 29 Matte Black | eBay
This 15mm 1-1/8 straight would give you a good option for the long-term with the added upgrade of a light front wheel. The combo would transform the bike. You wouldn't think much about a new bike.
The Epicon uses a sealed damper unit. You have no maintenance requirements.
This is a direct sale with full warranty.

2013 x Fusion Slide RL2 29er 29" Suspension Fork Black 100 mm 1 1 8" 15mm TA | eBay
Same in an X-Fusion.

Used Manitou Tower Pro 29er 29" Mountain Bike Fork | eBay
9mm drops can be stiffened with a DT RWS thru-bolt if you build/buy a wheel with changeable endcaps.

New Manitou Marvel Pro 29er Fork Suspension Milo Disc Only Straight | eBay
2014 expansion of options. This fork is the new top of the 29 line without the Mars spring/air system.
9mm drops so would benefit from RWS. Best offer.

20 Posts
I know RST forks aren't held in the highest regard but I picked up a First 29 air fork for $189 shipped and I couldn't be happier. There's a great review on twentynineinches and the M-29 which was the predecessor got rave reviews on this site.

720 Posts
All of your choices look pretty solid. I've been using a Tora for 3 years now. Thought I'd replace it when I bought my bike, but I've been really happy with it. Smooth, set-it-and-forget-it, and dang tough. I'd even buy another.

I like bikes.
316 Posts
Look into X-Fusion Slide 100mm

Picked mine up 299 ebay

Awesome Fork!
THIS is what I have and where I bought mine. Great deal and super nice fork! I actually chose the 15mm Axle and upgraded my wheels at the same time.

Thanks guys! I think the manitou tower or RS recon is the direction I'm leaning. It's so difficult to find just a 1 1/8 and not tapered steerer!!
Both the Recon and Manitou uses a coil spring along with air. To me, this is archaic technology but two each his own on that. I wanted to just put a specified amount of air and be done, not mess around with a certain spring tension for my particular weight. That is just inconvenient for me. BUT, that is just me, it may be no big deal for others. I also don't like the inverted arch design. It's just backwards I'm not trying to start any arguments. They are still nice forks, just not for me and is only my opinion.

Recon Gold is the shock your looking for!. You won't regret it. Cheap, not to heavy, and works amazing!.
Recon Gold is comparable to Manitou. Nice fork and good deal for the money.

Don't look past the higher end Suntours as already stated. They got great reviews and are rather inexpensive. Actually, i think they are slightly less than the X-fusion Slide...

As far as the Torsa goes...meh, your budget is high enough to get something much nicer and lighter.

I would not buy a used Reba. I debated this myself. Why go used for the same price you can have brand new? If you can get a nice clean Reba for under $200, then maybe, but the one's I seen on Ebay for the past year have been a bit overpriced for used, especially for being 6/7yrs old. btw. the 2012 Reba's have the old motion box controller. 2013 has the upgraded SID blackbox...I believe Reba Race ended in 2011? Just keep an eye out for the decals and do searches to try and match up the years. I just wouldn't buy a 4+yrs old shock when i could spend $50-$75 more and get spankin new!

Lastly, if you go with Reba, get solo air. Dual air is nice for guys that know how to adjust and can utilize it, but solo air is simple and effective and you as a casual rider will have less headaches in the end.

The X-fusion's dont come with the $34 shock pump or the $22 seal kit. I do like that the air valve is ON TOP of the fork and has a cover, where as the RockShox are on the bottom of the fork and can be difficult to fill in comparison. The seal kit...You might never even need to use it depending on the riding you do. My one friend is on his 5th season with his Reba seals and still no leaks. He does oil them regularly to keep them supple and is always cleaning his stanchions off with a rag on the trail. His seals have been collecting dust. By the time he uses them, the rubber will be likely be old and just as dry as the seals that are on his forks.;)
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