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wtf does trail/enduro mean?

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by mandown, Oct 18, 2005.

  1. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    so i got a new bike. the fork on it is a manitou splice, which is rated as a "trail/enduro" fork by manitou. i am not sure what that means to me as far as the type of terrain they expect riders to take this thing through. does "trail/enduro" include the expectation that some trails might have 3 or 4 foot drops to flat? can you dirt jump the thing? i see 4X riders with forks that seem to be XC to me on their rigs. since 4X courses have jumps, i would assume that implies you could. i am just not sure what fork mfgs expectations are these days. i recognize that there are 7" single crowns for "extreme freeride." i also get the sense that "trail/enduro" implies a more abuseable product than an "XC" fork. where is the middle ground in your mind?

    i am mainly concerned with the structural strength of the fork. i like the way my fork feels, but i have some concerns about how much abuse it can handle from a 185lb rider. the factory sent this little QR fork out with an 8" rotor on it, so i would imagine that they expect the fork to be somewhat tough. the stanchions are only 30mm, but they are cromo. the crown also seems a bit smaller than the Marz DJ i once owned. i have started looking at other forks that i might consider upgading to (pike, fox vanilla). they don't appear to be built with much bigger crowns (of course, how much can you figure out about strength by looking).

    the frame and parts spec on my new bike are both burly and intended for some abuse. it just does not seem like a company would put a fragile fork on an abuseable rig (i bought the bike complete)

    back to my original point - wtf does "trail/enduro" mean to you? i am not looking for advice on a fork to buy (though i am no opposed to hearing what fork you are riding and the type of terrain you are hitting with it). i am more interested in what other monkeys think of when they come across a fork marketed as "trail/enduro." would you huck it? would you jump it? would you only pedal uphill with it?
     

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  2. clandestine

    clandestine Monkey

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    i believe trail/enduro means a heavily used XC fork.
    i think enduro means endurance (atleast thats what i inferred from Specialized Enduro thats light and is for cross country)
    i guess (i could be wrong) trail/enduro means XC that can go on for a long time
    like marz Marathon fork.
     
  3. S.K.C.

    S.K.C. Turbo Monkey

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    to me "trail/enduro" means the kind of MTB riding that falls somewhere between Super-D type XC and full-on DH. I wouldn't try beating on this kind of equipment too hard, like you would with a triple clamp fork, but for the most part, "trail/enduro" is light freeriding. Pedaling up hill, to then go down.

    You may see pros running XC type gear on their race bikes (Lopes w/Fox Talas QR, Eric Carter w/ Rock Shox Psylo, etc) but those guys can afford to break stuff b/c they have factory support. That's not to say the stuff won't hold up - just not for very long with the kind of power they generate.

    Also you'll notice that the Enduro frames that Kyle Strait and Barrecloth ride are the "SX" variants which have different shock positions, and slightly different frame materials than the regular Enduro.
     
  4. Transcend

    Transcend My Nuts Are Flat

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    I think it means a mountain bike ride. It is rated for everything you will do short of downhill racing, without all the nonsense categories we have created.
     
  5. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    that is what i figured. the pros can afford to beat stuff up and throw it away after a few races if it will shave a few fractions of a seccond off their time, and the factory wrenches look at it between runs.
     
  6. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    yeah, but a "mountain bike ride" means different things to different people. some people go out and hit the fire roads and call that mountain biking (welcome to SoCal). i think this is what mfgs would consider XC. on the other hand, some people hit the north shore. if you were not a super fluid rider, would you feel comfortable taking a "trail/enduro" fork on the shore without fear of it breaking on a stunt drop? would you go to the local dirt jumps with it every once in a while? where is your personal line of comfort?

    i think rider desire and marketing have blown things out of control on the "built for burly" mindset. there are non-pro riders out there that go HUGE. however, i think many of us who buy "extreme freeride" don't need it, nor will we ever. but we buy into the advertising that says we need the extra inch of travel and the extra mm's on the stanchion. dudes were riding sick stuff on the shore years ago with bikes that did not have the "technology" of modern parts. has "technology" become better, or is it all hype? i think it is somewhere in the middle.
     
  7. S.K.C.

    S.K.C. Turbo Monkey

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    ...yup - but understand that they don't go through forks like they go through chains... when talking about the stresses and strains 4X riders put on their bikes, the drivetrain components get put through tremendous forces and wear. Carter goes through chains like Bruce Lee goes through bad guys.

    A fork on a pros 4x bike will last till' they wreck on it badly enough to need a replacement. But this is where the factory comes in - then they are taken care of. You or I would have to buy one, they get the factory hook up for free or next to nothing. Not a bad deal. :D
     
  8. Transcend

    Transcend My Nuts Are Flat

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    A good example of the trail bike phenomenon is the Orange Patriot 66. I rode this around with a fox 36 fork on it. I would ride this bike anywhere, even on the shore or DH race courses (toned down a bit of course).

    Mountain biking to me means out in the woods, on trails, jumping roots, small drops, rock gardens etc. Dirt rocks and bikes.
     
  9. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    ahh, but the fox 36 is not a "trail/enduro" fork, but an "extreme freeride" fork. would you say the same if the bike was built with a fox vanilla rlc?
     
  10. S.K.C.

    S.K.C. Turbo Monkey

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    Mountain Biking to me means not having to wear ball-punishing tight shorts.

    ...or ride ass and genitalia destroying seats.

    :D
     
  11. Transcend

    Transcend My Nuts Are Flat

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    Yup - but i am a bad example as my MsIsle Dj bike has a float RLC with WC crowns on it.

    The 36 is essentially a trail/enduro fork, the bike is designed with this in mind.
     
  12. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    what are "WC crowns?"

    ok "mr. bad example," would you change your position if you were riding a stock/factory-issue vanilla rlc that one of us mortal-monkeys could pick up from the lbs (or everybody's favorite e-lbs). and don't tell me that you are still a bad example because you are a super fluid rider, you only weigh 110 pounds, or you have a superman cape that lets you bunnyhop tall buildings with a single bound (completely unrelated - why the hell did they tell us that superman could leap tall buildings in single bound. we all knew he could fly, so why would he bother to jump?)

    also, would your opinion change as mfg changed. do you think that fox, manitou, rs, and marz are all on the same page in terms of their understanding/marketing of "trial/enduro" products?
     
  13. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    no, not at all. you gotta save that for friday nights at Miss Kitty's Parlour :thumb:
     
  14. Transcend

    Transcend My Nuts Are Flat

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    Fox made special crowns for their world cup XC riders during the first year of the floats. I believe they ended up being on the later terrex forx. Basically, the crowns are releived more then a standard crown to releive weight. You can see it on the outside of the crowns where the legs slide in. It is NOT made to be abused, and I haven't had a single issue with this fork in about 3 years, besides a few oil leaks that fox fixed.

    I only weigh 145lbs, and am pretty smooth most of the time actually. I would however ride a bone stock vanilla pretty much everywhere, I love that fork.

    As for manufacturers..I would ride any appropriate fork from fox or marzocchi. The same probably goes for manitou and RS, except i have no real experience with these forks except for their pure DH race forks.
     
  15. Jm_

    Jm_ Turbo Monkey

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    What he said.

    Some of us want to be able to go up the steepest steeps, and then down the nastiest downs. It's what "cross country" should mean.
     
  16. OGRipper

    OGRipper Turbo Monkey

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    I would focus less on what they call it than what it is.

    Find out specifically what the manufacture recommends for this particular product, the extent of warranty, etc. They will probably give you a somewhat conservative estimate but it should give you an idea of what they built it for. Basically, ask THEM, not us, what trail/enduro means to them.
     
  17. Jeremy R

    Jeremy R <b>x</b>

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    Yep, yep, this is just SCRAIT up mountain biking.
    IMO, these 6x6 light trail bikes are the most fun bikes on the planet.
    Sit in the saddle and claw your way up the climbs, and rip everything on the way down.
    My 5-spot is the perfect trail bike, and I think I have it built up around 29 lbs or so, but it was designed for trail riding. These new 6 inch bikes with DHX airs on them, are made more for the burly stuff, stiff as a dh rig, and they are still fairly light. I have seen bikes like 6-packs and Enduros that are around 30 pounds and built strong enough to ride almost anything. That is where it's at. :thumb:
     
  18. SD_TMTB

    SD_TMTB Chimp

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    Specialized put the Marz. EXR on the P bikes and BigHit Groms for a while..........
     
  19. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    i know i can go to the mfg to get their reccommendation. i probably will at some point for my own fork. however, my thought on the topic is what made me start this thread. i had a hard time figuring out what i would consider "trail" riding. i think of it as more single track with some roots and rocks. i don't envision jumps or drops. i became curious what other monkeys envisioned when they heard those words and how it influenced their decisions. think back a few years to when "freeride" was being defined in the marketing environment. there was an "all mountain" sense about it as well as a "big huck" sense about it. the "all mountain" sense has stuck around and is still going strong. the "big huck" freeride seems to have fallen out of marketing favor. if you checked out go-ride's frame chart (not currently on their page), you would have seen see that they have a wide variety of "trail" frames. they have the yeti 575, which i see as an XC bike when i look at it. they also have the yeti asx, which i would take down anything, including a dh race course.

    this was not intended as a "what should i buy" or "is it safe to do X" thread, but more of a "what is the first thing you think of when you hear these words" kind of thread. thanks for participating.
     
  20. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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  21. Jayridesacove

    Jayridesacove Turbo Monkey

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    hahaha
     
  22. OGRipper

    OGRipper Turbo Monkey

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    Gotcha. I take the long view and have seen a lot of these terms over the years. Ordinarily the first thing I think when I hear them is "Yeesh, another silly marketing term created by a company trying to further divide and compartmentalize our sport and confuse the public into thinking they need 6 bikes when 2 or 3 is probably more than enough." :D
     
  23. Jm_

    Jm_ Turbo Monkey

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    A 6 pack at 30lbs is sacrificing something, it's possible to get it to that weight, and I had it at that weight, but that's with a 165g selle italia flight TT, mavic 519s with revolution front spokes and a wtb laserdisc light, rear was XT and double butted spokes. RP3 shock. Eggbeaters. Light 550g rear tire, 600g front tire. 4.9lb Marzocchi AM1. It's possible to make it that light, but I've settled down on a more durable built for all-mtn riding on this bike. The lighter build wasn't very confidence inspiring and IMO you'd make better use out of a 5spot frame with slightly sturdier components and parts. A 30lb 6" bike can still be fragile for nasty DH/FR riding. My pack is probably 33-34lbs now, but way more durable, a small price to pay for a huge jump in durability and ridability.
     
  24. Jeremy R

    Jeremy R <b>x</b>

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    That is essentially the same thing I did with my 5-spot, I think at one point, I had it under 27 pounds, but at that weight, it may as well have been a XC race bike. Now, I have it at around 29 or so, and It is a different beast. Just putting a stiff wheelset on it made a ton of difference. I will try to get my 6 x 6 bike light, but I am not gonna do it at the risk of stiffness or durability.
     
  25. SK6

    SK6 Turbo Monkey

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    Amen brotha! :thumb:
     
  26. Westy

    Westy the teste

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    It's an XC ride for people who think they are too cool fro XC.
    ;)
     
  27. MikeD

    MikeD Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists

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    Remember when the original Patriot was the premier Orange DH race rig?

    Now its descendent, with increased travel, is a 'trail bike.'
     
  28. bigdrop05

    bigdrop05 Monkey

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    Lighter forks usually has more FLEX & probably do not last as long..

    Take a Nixon fork for example. 6" travel & 4.5# weight...You won't be freeriding that on anything very long IMO.

    If you ride something you aren't sure about,you will be worried in the back of your mind & probably have less confidence..
    Deal with extra weight if you aren't racing & you'll be better off..
     
  29. bikenweed

    bikenweed Turbo Monkey

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    Enduro simply means it will last a long time, but not forever. It will break, but only after it has endured quite a bit of punishment. It has a warranty, right?
     
  30. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    that is what i am afraid "trail/enduro" could mean. i don't want to fart around with an XC fork. i have broken a fork before, and i don't want to do it ever again.

    this is my other thought on what has become of the term "trail" and that modern "trail/enduro" bikes & parts are built to the same toughness level as older DH bikes (which held up to some heavy abuse).

    i hate marketing :mumble: :mumble: :mumble: :mumble: :mumble:
     
  31. MikeD

    MikeD Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists

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    Basically, you have to ignore the marketing and look at the specific product in question and its attributes/construction. Not so easy for those of us who aren't engineers, but I manage to get by somehow...

    MD
     
  32. RhinofromWA

    RhinofromWA Brevity R Us

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    I agree. If it fails it is your arse takign the lumps....not the marketing departments. Use some commonsense....not so easy for us some times because we want to believe the hype.

    If you see a $129 "downhill" bike at Target are you going to assume the bike is ready to tackle a World Cup course? I would hope not....common sense would tell some people to ignore the sticker.

    I don't care what they call it, you have a better idea of what you are going to be doing than them. Don't trust marketing....trust experience of others or your own. Sometimes I feel like smacking people who break something and blame the marketing for sayign it could do "it" Never mind that their definition of "it" may differ greatly.
     
  33. dexter

    dexter Turbo Monkey

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    um the comment about the nixon is b/s. i have had mine on a 4x bike, a long travel trail bike, a hardtail street bike shortly, and now a slopestyle bike and it rocks on all of them. its perfect if your somewhat smooth
     
  34. BussaFrame

    BussaFrame Monkey

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    I'm with you. My Nixon Platinum Rocks.
     
  35. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    ah yes, but what if there is no personal or friend experience to give you common sense. i agree, always stay on the side of caution since it will be you in the hospital and not the marketing department.

    the confusion is in this middle ground between XC and DH. when i buy an XC bike, i know what i am getting. when i buy a DH bike or part, i know what i am getting. however, this "AM/trail/enduro" classification is confusing me.

    talk about confusing, check these stats:
    fox:
    vanilla = 3.98lbs intended for AM/FR
    float X = 3.83lbs intended for AM/XC
    float = 3.69lbs intended for AM/XC/FR
    FX = 3.52lbs intended for AM/XC

    you can see as the weight drops, the purpose becomes more XC. the two factors in the weight department are the internals (which don't impact structural integrity by much) and the externals, which are the big player in strength. the FX is light, but they still consider it "capable" of all mountain use. i would be cautious in my "aggressive XC" all mountain use on this fork. the vanilla sits at the other end of the spectrum. you can jump and huck (though not go huge) this fork. but what the hell is going on between the float and the float X? i am assuming the internals are similar. the weight drops on the float compared to the X, but the lighter fork can be used for FR - ???

    how about this:
    manitou
    skareb - 3.3lbs intended for XC (ok, i am with you)
    Six & Axel - 4.4 & 4.3 lbs intended for XC (probably heavier internals)
    black super air - 3.4 to 3.6lbs depending on travel intended for trail/enduro.
    black platinum is TPC & 120mm and is still at 3.5lbs intended for trail/enduro (how big a structural difference can their be between this and the super air?)
    Nixon - 4.6 lbs intended for agressive trail - a heavier structure for a heavier use?
    firefly - 5.0 lbs for freeride - again a heavier structure for a heavier use.

    the point of all this - for the most part, these forks move by about 1/2 a pound and change the ride type from XC-ish to FR-ish. when you consider a relatively large part of that weight change is going from air internals to coil and oil, it would seem that not much is added to the structure to make the forks stronger for more agressive use. are we kidding ourselves about how much weight needs to be added to make a fork stonger for more abuse? are they just feeding us marketing bull? without knowing the engineering behind these products, it would seem the XC and AM forks are relatively similar in terms of structural strength (assuming the engineering is good enough that weight gain = strength).

    and back to my earlier point - describe what a "trail ride" is to you. when your buds call you up and say "let's do a trail ride" what bike do you bring (frame and fork) and what kind of terrain do you hit?
     
  36. slogmonster

    slogmonster Chimp

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    I seem to agree with everyone, if your 185 lbs I would at least beef up the springs so your not second guessing your equipmnet when you ride. For me the most important part is trusting your gear. I am a Marzocchi user anyway. Yeah, Enduro? sounds suspisious, maybe they don't want to be specific.
     
  37. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    i have adjusted the air preload so the fork has the appropriate preload (and i like the way it feels). beefing up the springs does nothing for the strength of the fork absorbing jumps or drops (ok, bottoming out the fork will stress the stucture).

    by the way, thanks for placing your first post here :thumb:
     
  38. sanjuro

    sanjuro Tube Smuggler

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    BTW, I don't care for the Splice too much. I noticed it is stocked on a lot of $1500 OEM bikes, and the stanction quality looks mediocre.

    If someone is in the market for a mid price fork, I usually recommend the Marz MX Pro. Half spring, half air, a little on the heavy side (4.1lbs), but that is a good trail/enduro fork for the price.

    BTW, trail means to me 4-5 inches of travel and moderately aggressive xc (which is what most people ride). Enduro is 6-7 inches of travel and capable of more FR type stuff but can be pedaled.

    Spec'ed has two bikes right in that range: the Stumpjumper FSR at 5 inches and the Enduro with 6.
     
  39. RhinofromWA

    RhinofromWA Brevity R Us

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    It would seem marketing overwhelms you and common sense eludes you.....:D j/k

    I bought a $500 Spec Hardrock Pro Disc. It came equiped with a JudyTT100 fork. The fork has maybe 3 inches of travel :think: but marketing makes you think that 100 referes to 100mm or jsut shy of 4 inches. It is a basic boinger fork....yet is on a bike that is marketed as a recreation application with trips to the "wild side"

    The fork is a POS I knew it but I wanted a cheap bike for trail riding and bike path riding while I was recovering from my injuries. I abused the fork and it held up but I knew I was taking my chances. I abuse it mostly because I am so heavy....but I was not dilusional thinking this bike was a DJing machine.

    Lots of product will "get you by" for a time. Then they break/fail....all products fail. Reliability is often sacrificed for lightweight no matter what you are riding. Humans produce squat for power and every gram can count, so we make that calculated risk. We buy "as light as we should" and maybe lighter. Then we complain that our new "WONDER FORK"(or whatever) failed.

    If you lack the common sense to see that a Auto part store motorcycle isn't built for the same abuse as a MX race bike than you have more issues and maybe shouldn't be putting yourself in harms way. :)

    You still are relying to much on marketing and second guesing yourself weights. I know you know the right answer....if not you become the "experienced rider" I was talking about earier. ;) And we get to learn from you. :p
     
  40. sanjuro

    sanjuro Tube Smuggler

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    Weight is only one factor in determining fork purpose. For example, a $150 RST and a $700 Fox Talas RLC weigh about 4.5 lbs, but there is a huge difference between the two.

    Design is one factor behind weight, like Marzocchi uses oil for dampening while Fox uses relatively little oil in their forks. Quality is another.

    Someone else mentioned marketing hype, and that plays into your confusion. I don't see much difference between a 4 or 5 inch fork (unless it was a dirt jumper, another story) except for the quality and the price.

    The average person could do a 3 foot drop on almost any fork and survive (I have seen it done on an RST and a SID). but don't expect it to hold up over repeated abuse. The stronger forks have stronger steerers (either reinforced alloy or steel), an obvious place for breakage, but there is not a huge difference in lowers for 32mm stanctions. Usually the difference is the interneals.

    Frankly, without continuing my lecture about different fork features, you probably be better off buying a magazine and reading their classifications.

    And people I ride with don't ask me on a "trail ride". I come prepared for anything...