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Discussion Starter #1
Before you say, "they are all crap", please note that I have a limited budget...my budget for an entire bike is what some people on here spend on forks alone!

RST Capa with Lockout

Suntour XC V3 with Lockout

Rock Shox Dart 2 with Lockout

Thanks for your feedback!
 

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yeah dart 2 as well, cause at least you can probably find parts for it. suntour and rst have almost no support. you can get a good 5 year old fork for what a dart 2 costs new that will be far better.
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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I found a year-old racing fork on EBay when I killed my RST. It's lasted four seasons and counting, with the occasional top-up of oil or rebuild.

I've had some saddle time on rigid bikes off-road. Don't turn your nose up at a rigid fork too soon - you don't "need" suspension, and it really only improves the ride if it has tunable spring rate and some kind of rebound damping, preferably also tunable, and doesn't track like a noodle. That only describes the Dart, on your list, and you should figure out what you need to do to get the right spring rate - you may need to swap the coil spring. It's not expensive, but it's yet another little cost. Larger riders have been pretty dissatisfied with the fork's stiffness.
 

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How much do good forks like Fox cost?

EDIT: I just did a quick search on Fox forks and saw they are like $800. THAT.....IS.....INSANE. I had no idea. I assume the shocks that came on my 2011 Trek 4300 are quite crappy.
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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LOL.

An older Fox TALAS sold for $250 on EBay a few days ago.

I'd say street price for the older F100s is around $300, based on completed listings.

Fox probably have the highest resale value. Also look for Rockshox Rebas, some Recons and Toras, and some higher-end Manitou models (but do your homework on those - make sure to get one you can still get parts for.) The Manitou Match (I think) is being touted as the best budget fork lately.

You should see what the top end Maguras go for.
 

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Snagged7 said:
How much do good forks like Fox cost?

EDIT: I just did a quick search on Fox forks and saw they are like $800. THAT.....IS.....INSANE. I had no idea. I assume the shocks that came on my 2011 Trek 4300 are quite crappy.

Fox prices are pretty high because they are high performance and very light. But you dont have to go with fox to get a high quality fork that performs well. You can buy a good performing fork from Manitou, Rock Shox, or Marzochhi at a reasonable weight for 200- 350 depending on the time of year and what you are looking for. (talking about new forks that is)
 

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I see, those prices ($200 to $350) are much more reasonable, which is good news. Personally I don't care how heavy a fork is, I just care about the performance. I could be pulling around sand bags and be happy knowing I'm getting a good workout as I enjoy my ride (ha).
 

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Snagged7 said:
I see, those prices ($200 to $350) are much more reasonable, which is good news. Personally I don't care how heavy a fork is, I just care about the performance. I could be pulling around sand bags and be happy knowing I'm getting a good workout as I enjoy my ride (ha).

Manitou drakes where on sale for 199 a few weeks ago(normally 399) 4.4 lbs with one of the best dampers out right now.
 

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getagrip said:
Before you say, "they are all crap", please note that I have a limited budget...my budget for an entire bike is what some people on here spend on forks alone!

RST Capa with Lockout

Suntour XC V3 with Lockout

Rock Shox Dart 2 with Lockout

Thanks for your feedback!
I'd pick the Dart if I had to. But look around for a Rock Shox Tora (especially a 318 if you can find one).

I tried a bike with a Dart once. Nothing all that great, but at least it was not sketchy.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
You guys are funny. So, would you say the best fork one could buy for under $100 is the Dart 2, or are there others that are better? Remember, not everyone has a $300 budget to buy forks...
 

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getagrip said:
You guys are funny. So, would you say the best fork one could buy for under $100 is the Dart 2, or are there others that are better? Remember, not everyone has a $300 budget to buy forks...
The only way to ensure a good fork at that price is a rigid.
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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getagrip said:
You guys are funny. So, would you say the best fork one could buy for under $100 is the Dart 2, or are there others that are better? Remember, not everyone has a $300 budget to buy forks...
I spent less than that on my fork. EDIT: Less than $100. Which is also less than $300.

Retail is not your friend. Take your time, do your homework, and see what's available on EBay. Less-known forks,forks with lower prices, like Toras and Recons, and forks that show up OEM on the front of mid-level bikes all show up for under $100. Something a little older from a brand with less cachet may also sell for under $100 - think Marzocchi and Manitou - both make some excellent forks and have made some less-than-brilliant ones, so their names aren't as powerful as "Fox." (So again, do your homework. Research the specific fork and availability of parts.) I don't see why you want to be the one who takes all the depreciation on a cheap fork that you can't resell when there are other people who've depreciated much better forks for you.

Or just get a rigid. A Kona P2 or Surly fork should be available in the right size for your bike, fairly cheap, and while I don't know the Dart, I'm confident that a rigid will track better than the RST or Suntour. There're also some carbon forks that show up on EBay for your budget, although I don't know if they're reliable or not.
 

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Do you plan on installing it yourself? I do most of the basic work on my bike but did not feel comfortable cutting the tube and installing the starnut. If you plan on taking it in ad that to the cost.
 

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getagrip said:
You guys are funny. So, would you say the best fork one could buy for under $100 is the Dart 2, or are there others that are better? Remember, not everyone has a $300 budget to buy forks...
If one of those forks that you listed has adjustable rebound then that's the one to buy. If none have it then buy nothing. Remember 100.00 entry level forks don't like riders over 180 pounds. They also track horribly in the rough without damping. A rigid fork with a 2.5" tire,running low pressure, will actually work better than an undamped entry level fork. They actually become dangerous in technical terrain.

Save your money. You need to spend at least 150.00 to 200.00 for something that works. You may have to wait a few months for a good deal to come along but you CAN buy 500.00 forks for around 200.00. They're usually brand new take-offs from one or two year old bikes with cut steerer tubes. Sometimes, they're even NIB.

However, if you're just riding around the block,or on smooth bike paths with the kids, then a 100.00 fork will work.;)

FWIW, I would never pay 500.00 for a fork but when you go down below 150.00 the performance suffers terribly for average X-country and AM riding. Sorry I'm not much help, but I've owned about 5 of these pogo stick forks and they just don't belong on a trail bike.
 
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