FOX Shocks 2013 – Sea Otter 2012

by Brian Mullin on April 29, 2012

FOX
is revamping their forks and shocks again this year, and they are
introducing the new CTD damper. The CTD stands for Climb, Trail and
Descend modes, and will be available on all 32 and 34 forks, with 100 to
160mm of travel, and the FLOAT rear shocks. The CTD will work in
synergy with the fork, shock, and adjustable seatpost for truly
integrated system. The Climb mode has the firmest low-speed compression,
and is meant for maximum pedaling power and efficiently, and would be
combined with a fully extended seatpost. The Trail mode, has a moderate
low-speed compression, for pedaling efficiently, bike control
and maneuverability on varying terrain and conditions, and uses the
seatpost in the middle position, giving a perfect blend of control and
pedaling. The Descend mode has an optimized low-speed compression, for
an open platform, for better plushness and control when riding on steep
and rough terrain, and works best with the seatpost at its lowest
position. For further tuning, the Trail mode allows three additional
adjustments (via an inner dial), for a soft, medium and firm feel within
that mode, and that feature is available on select CTD forks and
shocks. This latter tune is a bit like ProPedal.

The
new CTD system should simply things, since outside of the 3 CTD clicks
and the Trail adjust on some models, there is no lockout, multiple
low-speed and high-speed compression settings, ProPedal, blowoff, etc.
to tinker with. It does remove some of the fine tuning that previous
iterations had, but I am looking forward to seeing how the system works
in real time usage?

Forks
The 32 platforms FLOAT 26 and 29 went on a crash diet, and lose 50-100
grams and 200 grams, respectively, while still retaining their stiffness
and performance. All the FLOAT forks, from 130 to 180mm of travel get
an altered air spring curve, which is supposed to mimic a coil-like
feel? All of the 32’s come with a 9mm or 15QR axle, except for the TALAS
29, which only come with a 15QR.

FOX FACTORY 32

  • 26 FLOAT – FIT Terralogic 100 (3.22 lbs)
  • 26 FLOAT – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 100, 120 140 and 150 (2.99, 3.03, 3.66 and 3.85 lbs)
  • 26 FLOAT – FIT CTD Remote 100 and 120 (3.26 and 3.28 lbs)
  • 26 TALAS – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 140 and 150 (3.66 and 3.85 lbs)
  • 26 TALAS- FIT CTD Remote 140 (4.1 lbs)
  • 831 – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 100 (3.67 lbs)
  • FLOAT 29 – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 100 and 120 (3.24 and 3.78 lbs)
  • FLOAT 29 – FIT CTD Remote 100 (3.49 lbs)
  • TALAS 29 – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 120 (4.05 lbs)
  • TALAS 29 – FIT CTD Remote 120 (4.3 lbs)

The
34 platform has been extended to the 26 and 650B wheel sizes, with
160mm of All Mountain travel, come in FLOAT and TALAS versions, and 15QR
thru axle, and a tapered steerer. The 34 is 20% stiffer than a 32, and
approximately 200 grams lighter than a comparable 36, and they designed
in an axle-to-crown that is 7.4 mm shorter than its 36 brethren. The 34
still comes in the FLOAT 29 and TALAS 29, with the new FIT CTD with
Trail Adjust system. The 34 series should be their new crown jewel for
160 of travel in the smaller wheel size, and I am looking forward to
trying them out. I spoke with FOX, and at this point in time, the only
650B fork is the 34/160mm model, but if there is a demand, that could
change. I do wish they came with 20mm thru axles, as I am not a big fan
of 15mm?

FOX FACTORY 34

  • 26 FLOAT – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 160 (4.3 lbs)
  • 26 TALAS – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 160 (4.49 lbs)
  • FLOAT 650B – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 160 (4.38 lbs)
  • TALAS 650B – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 160 (4.57 lbs)
  • FLOAT 29 – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 140 (4.49 lbs)
  • TALAS 29 – FIT CTD with Trail Adjust 140 (4.68 lbs)

The
36 platform gets a subtle change, and the 160 FLOAT and 160 TALAS loose
the FIT RLC in favor of the more traditional FIT RC2, which all the 36
line now shares. One of my favorite 36 forks, the VAN 160, has
unfortunately been dropped from the lineup, and only the 180 VAN variant
remains. Thankfully, the 36 have retained the 20mm thru-axle, but I am
very bummed the VAN 160 is a goner.

FOX FACTORY 36 (26)

  • 160 FLOAT  – FIT RC2 (4.71 lbs)
  • 160 TALAS – FIT RC2 : 160/120 (4.79 lbs)
  • 180 FLOAT – FIT RC2 (5.27 lbs)
  • 180 TALAS – FIT RC2: 180/140 (5.37 lbs)
  • 180 VAN – FIT RC2 (5.94 lbs)

FOX FACTORY 40 (26)

  • FIT RC2 203 (6.93 lbs)

Shocks
The DHX series doesn’t get any major changes, while the FLOAT gets the
full CTD treatment. The FLOAT head and air sleeve was redesigned for a
slight weight reduction of 37 grams, and an increased air volume which
gives a flatter spring curve and greater surface area for improved
cooling. They tweaked the mounting system for the shocks, and added
resin hardware which reduces fiction by 50%, and new o-rings and flanged
bushing will keep out contaminants.

FLOAT FACTORY Rear

  • CTD BV with Trail Adjust
  • CTD BV Remote
  • CTD
  • CTD Remote

DHX FACTORY Rear

  • DHX AIR 5.0
  • DHX RC4

iRD
I first saw part of the Intelligent
Ride Dynamics (iRD) system when I was at Interbike, and it combined a
smartphone and an intelligent shock pump, which worked in synergy to
allow a rider to fine tune their bikes suspension. This year they have
added a simple smartphone app (iOS and Android), which identifies the
specific FOX component, and then guides the rider through the suspension
setup process. Once you have set up the sag, and it’s marked via the
o-ring, the power of the app comes into play. The app utilizes the
smartphone camera, and you overlay the viewpoint over your
components stanchion, and there is a banded image, and if the o-ring is
outside the middle green zone, air needs to be added or released.

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