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Picked up a 2014 Kona Unit on Friday. This is my first SS bike and also my first rigid mountain bike. Tossed on a pair of SPD pedals and some SLX brakes that I had in the garage and got to take it for a spin today. First impressions are that it's a totally different ride from the full squish bike that I'm used to. The pureness of the single gear bike was sweet.

Bike came stock with 32-18. For the trails I ride, I will probably give 32-20 a shot. Lot's of climbs here in So Cal. Probably going to have to go with a squish fork as well. The Kona P2 fork was harsh in the rocky environment that I ride in. Jarring on the down hills unless I was creeping.

It was a fun change from my other bike. Definitely more challenging climbing. Momentum is definitely your friend. Look forward to getting some more SS miles in.

Bicycle frame Bicycle tire Bicycle wheel Tire Bicycle fork
 

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Gorgeous bike.

Yeah your hands, spine and teeth will thank you for a suspension fork. Although there's a learning curve to riding rigid, once you figure out your weight distribution and a riding strategy (picking your lines, lofting the front high or long as circumstances require) it gets better. Picking the right fork and right front tire helps. Although it's never really optimal. I ride lots of smooth flats, sometimes 50% or more of a ride, and I like rigid for that stuff, and just learned to slow down or finesse the rough parts. But if you're mostly on the rough parts, yeah I imagine you'll like that sus fork
 

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Congrats! I've had my 2014 Unit since Dec, and it's all I ride now. I too ride here in SoCal, and I hear ya about the unavoidable rocky terrain. I have gotten pretty beat up a few times(and almost bit it) when I didn't "creep" down those rocky descents as you say (but I'm the slowest guy on the trail anyway so it doesn't change much in my case:).
I switched to 32x20 right away. My next move will be a bigger tire up front, but that's actually more because I want to try and improve my traction on all the dry loose stuff over hardpack here.
Have fun!
 

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I'm in Northern Colorado and my Unit is a 2012. When I bought mine I figured I'd get a suspension fork. 2.5 years later my FS has been sold and I'm riding rigid with a 2.4 up front. My average rides are about two to two and half hours. If I'm out around 4 hours I begin to feel it. Once I began to get used to the new style of riding I started to feel that a suspension fork was the last thing I wanted. I think it's good to give yourself time on the bike before making that decision. Either way I think you're going to love it. I'm riding more than ever before because I love it so much.
 

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Congrats!

I remember my first ride on a SS bike. I just knew it was for me. I loved the quiet simplicity of it. I went out and purchased a Kona Unit and it's now the only bike I own. It sure makes me choose my routes a little more seriously though.lol. Other than that it's a pretty easy going ride. I love it.
 

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Give rigid some time before you revert back to a suspension fork. Biggest thing is staying loose on the bike.
X2

I've been running a Pike on my SS for the last year and Float before that and finally went back to rigid. First ride on rocks was a ***** but the second was a lot better.
 

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Not trying to get you to spend more money but...

I just mounted a 35mm Velocity Blunt with a 3" tire on the front of my rigid SS and it dramatically changed riding rigid. Not to the extent of riding suspension, but certainly smoothed things out quite a bit.
 

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Rigid Cushy front end

How to soften up your ridged:

1) Carbon fork ( I have a niner)
2) wide carbon bars (I have 28" w/25.4 dia.)
3) wide rim ( I have a 30mm)
4) 2.4 tire ( ardent)
5) larger diameter grips (get cheap bolt on grips, remove the rubber with a blade, install new ORY grips over the bolt on)
6) Get hydrolic brakes

7) Ti seat post, push seat back to it cantilevers behind the post, this softens up the bootie....

Go ride
 

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Only time I ride the FS is for racing as of late. Just love the SS so much, congrats. I rocked the carbon fork for 2 seasons...got a SID XX this year....much faster
 
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