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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have quite a few friends that are getting into mountain biking and they ask me a lot of questions. I tell them to get a bike with a good fork but I really don’t know which budget forks are good any more. I usually ride a fox but everyone can’t afford a bike with XT, SLX, and Fox spec.
I remember when Marzocchi forks were king and they were heavier, coil and oil forks. They worked great, they were just heavy. Is there something equivalent for beginners with coils today? The weight is not really an issue if the fork is durable. I’m thinking, there has to be cheaper forks that just use older technology with a weight penalty. If not, what lower end air forks should beginners be looking at?
 

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A pretty common lower end spec air fork is the RS Recon. It's ok. The step-up Revelation seems to be more highly regarded.

Some of the Suntour air forks are starting to be OEM specced and they're getting good reviews, but someone else will have to tell you what models are desireable.
 

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I was looking around at the LBS a couple of days ago and gotta say the RS Judy on some of the bikes felt pretty bad just pushing on it in the store, real sticky and jerky. This is not a level of fork I'm familiar with so IDK what's up with that.
 

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Best cheapest fork is probably the Manitou Markhor which you can get for around $225ish shipped. If these are true new riders then I don't see purchasing an alternate fork as something viable until they get into the sport a bit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanx for the replies guys. Looks like Manitou still make the best bang for the buck replacement fork. Also, doesn’t look like anyone is doing coils except really low end recreational bikes or really high end like Ohlins. A couple of them have Trek Marlin 6’s with a SR Suntour XCT 30 HLO, coil spring fork and they want to upgrade the whole bike already. I think the bike is decent for beginner and it might be worth a fork upgrade but that custom 51mm offset may be an issue.
 

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Thanx for the replies guys. Looks like Manitou still make the best bang for the buck replacement fork. Also, doesn't look like anyone is doing coils except really low end recreational bikes or really high end like Ohlins. A couple of them have Trek Marlin 6's with a SR Suntour XCT 30 HLO, coil spring fork and they want to upgrade the whole bike already. I think the bike is decent for beginner and it might be worth a fork upgrade but that custom 51mm offset may be an issue.
That's pretty common on short-travel forks on 29ers. Shouldn't have trouble finding a fork with that offset. Or maybe I am misreading you.
 

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Ebay has xfusion forks for $150, in straight steerer. Its very difficult to find good quality straight steerer forks these days, and thats a nuts deal!

51mm offset is normal, but these days people consider it less than ideal and favor lower offsets. Any offset works fine, its all preference.
 
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