Deciphering Rockshox 09

supersonic Posts: 82,708
edited February 2009 in MTB general
I am sure I am not the only one who thinks that the RS website is confusing - personally I think it is the most poorly designed and badly laid out fork maufacturers site on the web. If it wasn't for some retailers descriptions, magazine and web reviews and news from trade shows we wouldn't have a clue about any new features. The forks have no description or useful synopsis other than a list of weights and features: often hard to tell what matches up with what, what the forks are for and what these features actually are (the descriptions for these are poor too). Add to that the wrong picture on some of them, and I am amazed anyone actually gets the fork they want! Maxle light on the Revelation? Try and work that one out. Marzocchi much better - overview, clear descriptions, photo galleries, and a chart with dimesnions of each fork.

Anyway, this is what I have discovered, starting with Tora and Recon. There are TWO main version classes each with a with different chassis. The XC series has shorter upper legs than the trail versions, and lighter crown and lowers. Visually different too.

The XC Tora and Recon, as far as I can see, have EXACTLY the same construction except the Tora has steel upper legs. Appears to be last years Reba lowers and crown. The Recon Race is the top dog at just over 4lbs, with motion control and solo air. All are limited to 100mm travel. Taking this fork as reference:

Turnkey forks add 0.1lbs (as on SL versions)
Coil adds about 0.4lbs
Steel legs (ie Tora) adds 0.25lbs
Non Turnkey and non motion control (ie XC) are about 0.1lb lighter
Alloy steerer option save 0.4 lbs.

Trail versions are a bit more complicated. They have the same lowers, but rather than just different upper legs, the Tora has a beefier crown. Both lowers are the old Revelation lowers. The tora legs and crown adds 0.75lbs over the Recon. Uturn spring adds about 0.55lbs over solo air, and the turnkey damper on these longer forks is a touch lighter this time. I think the Toras have thewrong weights listed, as the air forks are no lighter!


  • Interesting observations and now that you mention it the differences are clear. I was trying to work out the differences between the trail and xc recons, but couldnt really see it until you mentioned the differing upper lengths. Why sites like this cant just have a picture and a full rundown is beyond me, function over form please!
  • hucking_fell
    hucking_fell Posts: 1,056
    What you've written there makes more sense than the entire RS website !
    More freerange chicken than Freeride God
    Bighit , 5 , BFe
  • supersonic
    supersonic Posts: 82,708
    Thankyou! I will add more as I find out more! I will at somepoint produce a full chart with all the forks for easy comparison, and explain the features a bit better too.
  • lesz42
    lesz42 Posts: 690
    THANKS for the info, :) gettting some lighter forks, to replace my xcr's and a smoother action
    Giant Trance X0 (08) Reverb, Hope Hoops 5.1D, XT brakes, RQ BC, Works Components headset 1.5
  • I find the Fox online manual a bit confusing as, for the last 2 years, my RP23 air valve is on the oppersite side to what is on the video. So how do I work out the way to switch the propedal lever. :? Fair enough, once on the bike; you can figure it out, but that's not the point.
    I'd excuse RS for a mistake like this but it just looks like Fox can't be bothered to update its manuals! :(
  • xtreem
    xtreem Posts: 2,965
    In the Lyrik it's all messed up, or I'm messed up. :?
    I'll let the pictures to speak for it self.
    Plus for a noob like me, if I'm buying the Lyrik DFR I won't know what's the difference between dual flow rebound and mission control(or they are the same) or does it comes with motion control.
  • supersonic
    supersonic Posts: 82,708
    Yes, the Lyrik page looks to be a complete mess! As far as I can tell, they have the WRONG pic for every fork!

    This is what I think it should be:

    The damper sections of the forks are in two parts - rebound and compression. All Mission Control dampers have dual flow rebound in the fork leg too. The rest of the damper is the compression circuits - low speed adjust, high speed adjust, floodgate mode (depress silver dial and turn 90 degrees where it pops up) and floodgate adjuster (blow off force). Dual flow rebound is adjusted via a single knob on the bottom of the fork leg - the dual flow refers to the damper design, which allows differing amounts of oil flow depending on how deep into the stroke the fork is/was.
    Motion Control has a low speed compression adjustment, floodgate (activated by turning the low speed dial to max) and floodgate adjust with a rebound circuit. Some Motion Control forks have an IS (integrated speedstack) - don't confuse with IS disc mounts! The speedstack controls high speed impacts and can be internally tuned.
    Lastly we have a fork with just the DFR rebound circuit and no adjustable compression damping. It can be seen this is lighter.


    One fork (Lyrik) has Mission Control. One fork has Motion Control with IS (Lyrik IS) and the basic one has the Dual Flow Rebound and no high speed adjustment (Lyrik DFR). All have the wrong pictures! The middle pic is the DFR, the right pic the Lyrik (ie Mission control), the left pic the IS (ie Motion Control)

    Solo Air is a single air valve that inflates both the positive and negative chambers together. 2 Step is a air fork with a travel adjuster that shortens the fork by 45mm. UTurn is a coil fork with 45mm of infinite adjustment.
  • xtreem
    xtreem Posts: 2,965
    Now, with that post supersonic, I understan how the Mission and Motion control works, well not perfectly clear but when I have some fork with one of those things then I'll understand perfectly.
  • Horton
    Horton Posts: 327
    Have RS stopped doing the U-turn air forks - my Pikes are air and have U-turn rather than the 2-step adjuster - 454's if I remember rightly.
  • supersonic
    supersonic Posts: 82,708
    U turn air still available on Pikes and revelations (and Rebas).

    2 Step is found on longer travel forks like the Lyrik.
  • How does the Reba SL differ from the Reba Team? Is it just internal floodgate vs external floodgate, or are there other differences?
    No-one wanted to eat Patagonia Toothfish so they renamed it Chilean Sea Bass and now it's in danger of over fishing!
  • BlackSpur
    BlackSpur Posts: 4,228
    How does the Reba SL differ from the Reba Team? Is it just internal floodgate vs external floodgate, or are there other differences?

    The Team has a lighter Titanium Spring tube over the plastic one in the SL
    "Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling." ~James E. Starrs
  • remeber with rockshox SL forks are often the bottom of the range, as SL stands for SPORT LINE not super light.

    The team forks are the top model.

    i am not sure of the differences however between the models.
  • supersonic
    supersonic Posts: 82,708
    They used to be the top fork in the range years ago. The lowest moniker now is xc as on some toras and recons.
  • izthewiz
    izthewiz Posts: 154
    I went to the SRAM website (chocolate fireguard!) to get more info about a Revelation fork, but the blurb for it is all about the Domain, and it's just a quote from some geezer they pay to use their products. And aparrently they don't do U-Turn versions.
    And what's going on with their remotes? What do they do, how do they differ, and what features do they have that would make me want to choose them over a non-remote-equipped fork?

    If I buy a fixed travel Rev Air, can I upgrade it to U-turn later? In the blurb for one I'm interested in, the site it's on says All Travel 125/140mm. ... egoryId=18
    What does this mean? Fixed travel? Internally adjustable? 2 travel settings?
    Does the poploc give variable lockout, or on/off only? Lock at full extension, or something?
    Is that a good price or what?

    Props to supersonic for redirecting me to this thread. The font of all knowledge for things RS!
    The only bad view from the saddle is of the point of impact rising rapidly to meet you.
  • supersonic
    supersonic Posts: 82,708
    Ah, you found it! ;-)

    All revelations for 09 are air sprung: dual air or air uturn. I would think a coil u turn could be fitted, I have done the same with air toras. All travel means the travel is adjustable internally by adding/removing spacers.

    Two flavours of poploc: Standard, and poplock adjust. The former will not allow you to set the compression damping, either locked out or fully off. Poplock adjust allows you to set the compression damping anywhere, and after it is unlocked will return to that setting. There is also the newer pushlock with a slightly different mechanism, lighter and easier to use apparently.

    The lockout is at full extension, but allows a small amount of travell (about 20mm) to aid traction. Adjusting the floodgate sets when it blows off.

    Price looks good to me! Check what poplock it has. If not poplock adjust, I wouldn't buy, would rather have the fork with no poplock at all.
  • I don't suppose any one at anytime would be prepared to write that in english?
  • supersonic
    supersonic Posts: 82,708
    That is as simple as I could do it! If you can't follow that, try the RS site...

    Or look up each term.
  • Thanks for taking the time to do this Supersonic!

    I don't think much of the remote Poplocs and Poploc adjusts. They are too fiddly and I have actually taken the Poploc adjust off my Reba Race. My Reba SL came with a large blue knob on the fork top which does the same thing without being fiddly. Turn it all the way to lock the forks or all the other way for fully open. Compression is adjusted by turning the knob halfway, quarter way, etc. This is much better than a separate dial.
  • I'm still trying to figure out if my '08 Recon Race has an adjustable Blowoff gate - according to the manual ALL motion control shocks have this but methinks this is a complete fabrication as there is no 'Gate' cover on the right fork leg above the motion control adjuster, just a black gromet that is held on by a circlip.

    Why the hell they can't print a simple matrix of fork and features in the manual/website really is beyond comprehension.
    BOYDIE Posts: 528
    Hi m8
    On the Recon the motion control floodgate is fixed.
  • Whytepeak
    Whytepeak Posts: 2,616
    How trail worthy are the maxeled rebas, the crown on them looks quite weak.
    Now that we are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak and not to please ourselves. ROMANS 15:1