Ever since shock builder Fox Racing Shox got into forks (or “Forx”), everyone’s been wondering when it was going to get around to making a downhill fork. Well, here it is, debuted at the recent NORBA race at Big Bear, California. This is the Downhill Factory Edition – it’s not a production item, this is pro-issue only, but it’ll form the basis of a fork you can buy in the Autumn.
As you’d expect from a Fox fork, it’s a pretty burly device, with 40mm stanchions and almost cartoon-like lowers. We’re curious as to what the lowers are made out of – there’re steps between the brace area, centre section and dropouts, suggesting that the middle bit of the lower is bonded to the ends. Travel is adjustable from six to eight inches in half-inch increments via internal spacers, while the guts are coil springs, oil dampers and a wealth of adjustments.
Fox is claiming a low axle-crown distance and “exceptional lock-to-lock turning radius”. There’s also a new disc brake mounting standard that should let many riders get away without additional caliper brackets to run DH-sized rotors.
If you’re up at Fort William for the UCI World Cup in a couple of weeks, keep an eye out for this fork on the bikes of Jared Graves and Ross Milan of Team Yeti, Kyle Strait and Curtis Keene of Specialized, Marla Streb and Kathy Pruitt of The Luna Chix, Lisa Sher of Chumba Wumba and Melissa Buhl of KHS.