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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi Folks

This is my first post - Long time reader, so take it easy on me and sorry for the long winded note below.

I am finally getting back into mountain biking after about 12 years off. Not to make a short story to long, but I use to own a Fisher Montare back in 97 and when I went away to College I brought it with me. The campus residence wouldn't let me keep it in my room so I had to keep it outside in the common bike shed. The 2nd weekend it was there some idiot lit the shed on fire and everyone lost their bikes. I had to go through my parents home insurance which had a $1000 deductible which left me with a $1000 bucks cash that wasn't enough to replace the bike - so I spent in on school.

Fast forward to present day. I'm married now with 2 little kids (3 years and 10 months). I basically gave up the idea of riding again because the wife wouldn't go for me dropping $1500 on a bike. When to my surprise she bought me a 2009 Trek 6700 for x-mas this year with plans on doing some family riding and my own trail riding again - friggin awesome.

I am a bit of a gadget freak (build computers) so, already I am switching out components on the thing (shifters, front derailleur, tires, and now the forks)

I am a little torn on what fork to get. I have it somewhat narrowed down to the 09 Fox F100RLC or the 2010 Reba XX. I know both will be over kill but I don't ever want to be limited by my gear if anything I should be the limiting factor when riding not my bike. I really like trail riding with some light drops and downhill nothing crazy or enough for a complete DH bike.

Does anyone have experience with either one of these forks and would you recommend one over the other? or is it just a matter if you like Fox or Rock Shox

Cheers
 

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First, for feeding your thoughts about these two (very good) forks, I invite you to read these reviews from MBUK (bikeradar.com is their Website, although no more published under the same name as the magazine) :

Reba :
http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/category/components/forks-suspension/product/reba-xx-10-36970
Fox RLC :
http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/category/components/forks-suspension/product/f100-rlc-31350 (the review is for the 2008 model, but it hasn't change for 2009).

I currently have an F32 Float RLC on my XC bike (soon to be replaced) and from my point of view, you can't go wrong with either fork. The Fox has been criticized for not giving the full amount of travel (generally, you get 80 mm (on a 100 mm fork) of super-efficient damping and then it becomes super progressive, i.e. hard), although there's a way to « correct » this shortcoming (make a search on the suspension forum). I've owned a 100 mm Reba a few years ago and although it may use a few lower-quality parts than the Fox, you won't notice it. The Reba is a very smooth operating fork and the dual-air system makes it possible to tune the fork perfectly for your kind of terrain, weight and style of riding. Plus, it is cheaper than the Fox. In a blind test, I think the Reba would be the people's choice, since it's more linear and gets the full travel. As in terms of stiffness, I don't think you could feel any difference, all things being equal (9 mm axle, 100 mm travel). My advice : Reba.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Jerome for replying and pointing me in the direct of those reviews. I haven't had much luck finding much info the Reba XX.

I have been leaning towards the Reba pretty heavy these last few days. The Reba's(2010) are about $150 more than the Fox (2009) are which puts it to about $900 CDN which is "wife would kill me if she found out" expensive. I really like the idea of the remote lockout as well as the 20mm Maxle option. I know it will be more than what I need today, but it's tomorrow so to speak is when I will need it. My riding style has been a little on the aggressive side (at least when I was younger) so I think either one would be better than the current Recon coil SL's I have now.

I think I will probably end up getting the Reba's and a new Hope Hub and hit the trail hard and often.
 

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Jerome said:
(the review is for the 2008 model, but it hasn't change for 2009).
Incorrect. Fox increased the air spring volume by about 9ml between 2008 and 2009 to make the fork feel more linear, and to allow full use of travel more frequently.

Jerome said:
The Fox has been criticized for not giving the full amount of travel.
Please see my not above. Since I own a 2003 Float, 2007 Float, and a 2010 F100, I can tell you the increase in air spring volume does, indeed, work.

To the OP, both are very good forks, and both has advantages. The Reba is a solid platform, but I have two issues with it. First, I don't care for the Black Box Motion Control (MC) damper, since I've found it like to rebound off of things instead of just absorb them. I tried very hard, but was unable to tune it out. I've also ridden a standard MC, and a standard MC with a BB rebound damper, and neither of them did that. Second, the Dual Air spring system, while very tunable, is also prone to some problems. It has more seals than Fox's air spring, worse seals (o-ring vs. cup), and can give some hoky problems. The Fox air spring, while less tunable, is very robust and reliable.

The Fox also has it's ups and downs. The main issue with them is their seals absolutely suck, and you should budget an additional $25 to $30 to upgrade them to Enduro seals. Aside from that, I've found Fox forks to perform very well, be durable, and light. When you work on a Fox, every part of the fork just drips quality - all the parts are machined aluminum. Another huge plus is Fox will happily sell parts direct to the end user, while Rock Shox always forces you to go through a bike shop. For someone who does all their own wrenching, it can be terribly frustrating. I've ridden Marzocchi, RS, Manitou, and all my bikes ended up with Foxes on them.

Especially since the Reba costs more, go with the Fox.

EDIT: Don't forget the rebound damper o-ring problems Rock Shox forks like to have, and which they still haven't fixed.
 

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Have you considered the cheaper Reba Team instead of the XX? The only upgrade (besides the stickers) in the XX is the Xloc hydraulic lockout. Everything else including the rest of the Blackbox Dual Flow damper is the same and performance will be the same.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The Recon's I have on there now have the turnkey damping feature. I think they serve a purpose and are a respectable choice at an affordable price point.

My typical weight is about 185lbs which I should hit again by March (currently 205lbs) - building up the fat deposit for the cold Canadian winters :D -

So far in my "re introduction" to mountain biking I have found that the technology from 12-13 years ago has come a long long way - breaks and shock to be more specific. Fox appears to be the top of food chain and the most desirable shock - everyone seems to want them and have nothing but good things to say about them. From what I can tell it looks like RS on the other hand is trying hard to cut into Fox's market share by adding a few more bells and whistles to there lines. I hope this doesn't weaken their offerings.

This is actually a really tough choice since it cost so much coin - I hate to regret the wrong choice. Part of me would like to have a set of Fox because of the name and such a loyal following but the other part of me thinks RS offers a little more bang for the buck. I know its better if I can test drive them but the problem is the LBS doesn't have them both instock - I'm just going on the fact you get what you pay for and model reviews. I'm sure either one would be killer.


I'll have to look into the rebound damper o-ring problems that you mentioned on the RS.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I figure the the stickers along give me extra power - at least 5 MPH faster on the track :D

Your probably right with going with a cheaper priced Reba model but it looks like the marketing of the XX has me hooked to make it one of the options

Here in Canada I'm finding the XX the same price as the Reba Team and only $100 more than Reba SL - at that price the $100 is to bad and it comes with the 20mm Maxle
 

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lseaward said:
I figure the the stickers along give me extra power - at least 5 MPH faster on the track :D

Your probably right with going with a cheaper priced Reba model but it looks like the marketing of the XX has me hooked to make it one of the options

Here in Canada I'm finding the XX the same price as the Reba Team and only $100 more than Reba SL - at that price the $100 is to bad and it comes with the 20mm Maxle
If you do get the 20mm Maxle version, don't forget that you need a new front wheel too
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I was talking with the LBS I will be getting the fork from and they said if I go with the 20mm TA option they can reuse the same rim (might need new spokes) and throw on 20mm Hope hub which of course increases the overall price of the Reba. With the Fox I believe they said it was a 9mm QR so no changes to the hub or rim needed.

I bought a lottery ticket for tonight's draw - cross my fingers.

I just upgraded to all x9 shifters and F + R derailleur along with WTB velociraptor tires and once I upgrade the forks she will be a sweet ride.

I guess I'll have to give up golfing (and maybe computers) to make more time to ride, which should be easier to do since the wife isn't big on me spending 5 hours out golfing each time.
 

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My suggestion?

Keep the fork and just upgrade the damper to Motion Control. It'll only cost you about $50 to $60 for parts, and you can do it yourself. Ride the bike as it is for a year until you get a taste for how you like things, and then start dropping big money on upgrades.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
bad mechanic said:
My suggestion?

Keep the fork and just upgrade the damper to Motion Control. It'll only cost you about $50 to $60 for parts, and you can do it yourself. Ride the bike as it is for a year until you get a taste for how you like things, and then start dropping big money on upgrades.
You are definitely the voice of reason on this one. That's what I should do.
 
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