Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Selma goes Squishy - DT Swiss XMC RLTC 80mm 29er fork

This past weekend marks my foray in to the world of squishy 100 mile rides. Will it last? YES! The DT Swiss fork is amazing. I was skeptical about it since there are very few reviews out there. The $1300 price tag might have something to do with this.

The carbon legs and arch are beautiful, and the overall finish is top notch. Mine weighed in right at 3.5 pounds.

The fork has a bunch of settings, all externally, that allow the fork to be dialed in obsessively, or as some might see it, to make it extremely complicated. The lockout is integrated in to the rebound setting on the upper right leg and spins pretty easily. I was worried about changing the rebound all the time, but then realized it's so easy to move back it's no big deal. Also on the same leg as the rebound and lockout is something that allows you to customize the position of the fork when locked out. I decided to knock it down about 1.5" when locked out to get the front a little lower. When the fork is locked out there is absolutely no movement. On the lower right leg is the compression setting. I just put that at half way and it seems fine. I may mess with it some more when I have the time.

I used the DT Swiss recommended PSI setting and took it for a test ride the day before my race. I was pleasantly surprised. First, the PSI seemed perfect. Second, the fork does not bob at all, not even 1mm, when standing and climbing. This was a shock. I fully expected to use the lockout when climbing. I did not use it once during the race!

Since I've nothing to compare it to, I can't say it's any better than the competition. I do notice most other brand forks bobbing up and down when out of the saddle. The DT Swiss stays nice and stiff then activates when it hits a bump and locks back out again. I must say, yet again, this really surprised me!!! Perhaps some day I will ride some other forks and offer a thorough review.

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