Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Mountain Biking
Reload this Page >

2 front end questions

Notices
Mountain Biking Mountain biking is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. Check out this forum to discuss the latest tips, tricks, gear and equipment in the world of mountain biking.

2 front end questions

Old 09-06-19, 09:24 AM
  #1  
steve392
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
2 front end questions

I've recently got back into biking and have a Schwinn Boundary that i love. My concern is the front forks. How do I tell if they are shot? In the 2 months I've had the bike and rode it, the suspension has definitely gotten much more softer and nearly bottoms out on minor terrain or going off a curb. If they are shot, are their beginner level forks that aren't expensive?

Lastly, i see video's online with guys having much wide handle bars. What is the advantage to having a wider handle bar? Or a smaller stem?
steve392 is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 11:36 AM
  #2  
qclabrat
Senior Member
 
qclabrat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 951
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 91 Post(s)
Liked 17 Times in 15 Posts
Originally Posted by steve392 View Post
I've recently got back into biking and have a Schwinn Boundary that i love. My concern is the front forks. How do I tell if they are shot? In the 2 months I've had the bike and rode it, the suspension has definitely gotten much more softer and nearly bottoms out on minor terrain or going off a curb. If they are shot, are their beginner level forks that aren't expensive?

Lastly, i see video's online with guys having much wide handle bars. What is the advantage to having a wider handle bar? Or a smaller stem?
A wider bar allows better handling, but how wide is personal. The shorter stem allows for the wider bar without changing your body position much.

A $200 MTB isn't really meant to be ridden anyway but flat roads. Actually at that price point you would have been better off with a rigid fork. Suntour or SR makes decent entry level forks but it will still cost more than what you paid for the Schwinn.

My suggestion, if you really enjoy the sport, save your pennies and get a better bike. And in the meanwhile, ride the Schwinn till the wheels come off....
qclabrat is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 12:40 PM
  #3  
steve392
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by qclabrat View Post
A wider bar allows better handling, but how wide is personal. The shorter stem allows for the wider bar without changing your body position much.

A $200 MTB isn't really meant to be ridden anyway but flat roads. Actually at that price point you would have been better off with a rigid fork. Suntour or SR makes decent entry level forks but it will still cost more than what you paid for the Schwinn.

My suggestion, if you really enjoy the sport, save your pennies and get a better bike. And in the meanwhile, ride the Schwinn till the wheels come off....
Ohh im not going on trails lol. My 300lb body will not like me afterwards. Only offroad i'll be doing right now is when im racing my son in a park and dad wants to win so he cuts across the field lol.
steve392 is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 01:19 PM
  #4  
Darth Lefty 
Disco Infiltrator
 
Darth Lefty's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Folsom CA
Posts: 9,913

Bikes: Schwinn Paramount, Salsa Timberjack, Diamondback Expert TG, Burley Samba

Mentioned: 62 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1600 Post(s)
Liked 210 Times in 134 Posts
Your suspension fork is basically just a spring, that doesnít wear out. If it feels softer itís probably just sliding easier than it did when new.

The wide handlebars are part of a whole different style of design with raked out steering, 120+ mm fork travel, a longer front triangle and dropper seat post. The idea is to get you off the seat and over the back wheel and the front can plow through and over the trail. Most bike-store mountain bikes are like this now but it hasnít made it to the Walmart bikes yet.
Darth Lefty is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 01:32 PM
  #5  
steve392
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Your suspension fork is basically just a spring, that doesnít wear out. If it feels softer itís probably just sliding easier than it did when new.

The wide handlebars are part of a whole different style of design with raked out steering, 120+ mm fork travel, a longer front triangle and dropper seat post. The idea is to get you off the seat and over the back wheel and the front can plow through and over the trail. Most bike-store mountain bikes are like this now but it hasnít made it to the Walmart bikes yet.
Gotchya!
steve392 is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 01:57 PM
  #6  
steve392
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Your suspension fork is basically just a spring, that doesnít wear out. If it feels softer itís probably just sliding easier than it did when new.

The wide handlebars are part of a whole different style of design with raked out steering, 120+ mm fork travel, a longer front triangle and dropper seat post. The idea is to get you off the seat and over the back wheel and the front can plow through and over the trail. Most bike-store mountain bikes are like this now but it hasnít made it to the Walmart bikes yet.
Crazy question, but do they make stiffer springs for these type of basic suspension forks? I really don't want to change them out as im not going racing off ramps, hard landings etc. But they are way to soft for my liking.
steve392 is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 02:32 PM
  #7  
Leebo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: North of Boston
Posts: 5,507

Bikes: Kona Dawg, Surly 1x1, Karate Monkey, Rockhopper, Crosscheck , Burley Runabout,

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 785 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 29 Times in 22 Posts
Do you need to add air, adjust the rebound/compression settings?
Leebo is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 02:45 PM
  #8  
carlosponti
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Moore, OK
Posts: 137

Bikes: '90 Raleigh Technium Prestige, '90 Fuji Thrill - Gone, '18 Fuji Nevada 1.7 29er

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 26 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 11 Posts
Originally Posted by steve392 View Post
Crazy question, but do they make stiffer springs for these type of basic suspension forks? I really don't want to change them out as im not going racing off ramps, hard landings etc. But they are way to soft for my liking.
not on forks, they do have something like that for certain rear shocks on full suspension bikes.
carlosponti is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 02:47 PM
  #9  
carlosponti
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Moore, OK
Posts: 137

Bikes: '90 Raleigh Technium Prestige, '90 Fuji Thrill - Gone, '18 Fuji Nevada 1.7 29er

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 26 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 11 Posts
carlosponti is offline  
Old 09-06-19, 05:57 PM
  #10  
Darth Lefty 
Disco Infiltrator
 
Darth Lefty's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Folsom CA
Posts: 9,913

Bikes: Schwinn Paramount, Salsa Timberjack, Diamondback Expert TG, Burley Samba

Mentioned: 62 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1600 Post(s)
Liked 210 Times in 134 Posts
Originally Posted by steve392 View Post
Crazy question, but do they make stiffer springs for these type of basic suspension forks? I really don't want to change them out as im not going racing off ramps, hard landings etc. But they are way to soft for my liking.
Prooobably not. Unless the stanchion diameter and spring length are the same as some other fork with more options. Suntour XCM for instance have lots of versions
__________________
Genesis 49:16-17
Darth Lefty is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 07:25 AM
  #11  
prj71
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 1,647
Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 909 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 9 Times in 9 Posts
Originally Posted by steve392 View Post
If they are shot, are their beginner level forks that aren't expensive?
Define expensive. A beginner level fork will cost as much or more than what you paid for that whole bike.
prj71 is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 07:42 AM
  #12  
steve392
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
Define expensive. A beginner level fork will cost as much or more than what you paid for that whole bike.
I can deal with spending $200ish on a new much better fork even though the bike cost that much. The bike itself is great for me and what I plan on doing. I won't be flying down trails and launching off ramps/hills. The forks on this bike however are just way to soft. I was out with my son yesterday evening just riding around and having run. Taking advantage of the bigger bike and him being 6 i would go up curbs and the lawn but going off the curb, the forks bottomed out and i wasn't even going fast. It's tolerable when just riding around but anything more and im bottoming out.
steve392 is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 12:29 PM
  #13  
Kapusta
Cyclochondriac
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 2,441
Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1045 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 155 Times in 110 Posts
Originally Posted by steve392 View Post
I can deal with spending $200ish on a new much better fork even though the bike cost that much. The bike itself is great for me and what I plan on doing. I won't be flying down trails and launching off ramps/hills. The forks on this bike however are just way to soft. I was out with my son yesterday evening just riding around and having run. Taking advantage of the bigger bike and him being 6 i would go up curbs and the lawn but going off the curb, the forks bottomed out and i wasn't even going fast. It's tolerable when just riding around but anything more and im bottoming out.
Honestly, I would consider just replacing it with a rigid fork. Maybe get a fatter tire in the front for a tad more cush.
Kapusta is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 01:15 PM
  #14  
qclabrat
Senior Member
 
qclabrat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 951
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 91 Post(s)
Liked 17 Times in 15 Posts
Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
Honestly, I would consider just replacing it with a rigid fork. Maybe get a fatter tire in the front for a tad more cush.
^this, but this can still run you over $100, unless you can do the work yourself
qclabrat is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 01:45 PM
  #15  
steve392
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
I was sent a link to a suntour one for roughly 100 bucks. I am capable of doing the work myself as long as I have all teh tools i need or can physically get to in a messed up garage. Only problem i could forsee is being to properly cut the stem to the correct length. There's enough how-to videos on youtube these days.
steve392 is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 02:36 PM
  #16  
Kapusta
Cyclochondriac
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 2,441
Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1045 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 155 Times in 110 Posts
Originally Posted by steve392 View Post
I was sent a link to a suntour one for roughly 100 bucks. I am capable of doing the work myself as long as I have all teh tools i need or can physically get to in a messed up garage. Only problem i could forsee is being to properly cut the stem to the correct length. There's enough how-to videos on youtube these days.
Unless it is an air fork (with a high max pressure) or a coil available with stiffer replacement springs, at 300lbs you may still be bottoming it out a lot.
Kapusta is offline  
Likes For Kapusta:
Old 09-11-19, 03:37 PM
  #17  
steve392
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
Unless it is an air fork (with a high max pressure) or a coil available with stiffer replacement springs, at 300lbs you may still be bottoming it out a lot.
can always test fit before cutting and see how much it compresses.
steve392 is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 04:05 PM
  #18  
Kapusta
Cyclochondriac
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 2,441
Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1045 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 155 Times in 110 Posts
Originally Posted by steve392 View Post
can always test fit before cutting and see how much it compresses.
Sure, but if you go to return it, it will likely be apparent that the fork was installed. The crown race and QR (and possibly the stem) leave a mark. It will also be apparent looking at the brake mounts whether they have been used.

You will also need to get creative in preloading the headset bearings without using a star nut.... though I am sure there is a way.
Kapusta is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 04:07 PM
  #19  
steve392
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
Sure, but if you go to return it, it will likely be apparent that the fork was installed. The crown race and QR (and possibly the stem) leave a mark. It will also be apparent looking at the brake mounts whether they have been used.

You will also need to get creative in preloading the headset bearings without using a star nut.... though I am sure there is a way.
I like challenges lol
steve392 is offline  
Old 10-01-19, 03:11 PM
  #20  
freeranger
Senior Member
 
freeranger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 1,267

Bikes: 06 Lemond Reno, 96 GT Timberline mtn.bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 47 Post(s)
Liked 35 Times in 26 Posts
Does the fork have "caps" at the top which can be removed, so you can access the inside of the stanchions? If they do, perhaps you could cut a piece of steel pipe, or a wooden dowel, approx. the same size as the coil springs, and put it over the springs, so when you put the caps back on, the springs will have more preload on them, making them stiffer. You might have to cut a few until you figure what length works best, but I think it would work. Another thought is maybe to put an elastomer in the stanchion, to introduce more preload--went looking, wasn't sure what I might find, but this looks interesting: http://faqload.com/faqs/bicycle-comp...ork-elastomers

Last edited by freeranger; 10-01-19 at 03:36 PM.
freeranger is offline  
Old 10-01-19, 07:05 PM
  #21  
terrymorse 
climber has-been
 
terrymorse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Palo Alto, CA
Posts: 3,477

Bikes: Scott Addict R1

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 290 Post(s)
Liked 145 Times in 109 Posts
You could make a cheap and easy do-it-yourself fork lock out, like this guy did:

__________________
Ride, Rest, Repeat
terrymorse is offline  
Old 10-05-19, 08:45 PM
  #22  
Jeff of Vt
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
You're unlikely to find aftermarket parts for cheap forks. This is one of those cases where a rigid fork is your best bet. Not only are they much cheaper but you'll gain efficiency and save weight. They'll also outlast any cheaper suspension fork and they're maintenance free.

Wider handlebars provide more leverage but handlebars are very much personal preference, hence the dizzying array of lengths and shapes made.
Jeff of Vt is offline  
Old 10-06-19, 12:22 AM
  #23  
Darth Lefty 
Disco Infiltrator
 
Darth Lefty's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Folsom CA
Posts: 9,913

Bikes: Schwinn Paramount, Salsa Timberjack, Diamondback Expert TG, Burley Samba

Mentioned: 62 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1600 Post(s)
Liked 210 Times in 134 Posts
Talking about efficiency and weight on a bike like this under a 300 lb guy is dumb. Leave the fork alone or get a better one. He needs it.
Darth Lefty is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
JohnT_Bicyclist
Bicycle Mechanics
6
09-17-17 10:50 PM
corrado33
General Cycling Discussion
20
01-22-16 03:28 PM
hoss762
Bicycle Mechanics
3
01-16-16 01:34 PM
apaulson714
Mountain Biking
6
11-30-12 10:31 PM
dbshabo
Hybrid Bicycles
11
06-12-11 04:12 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.