The good old Fox 36 was getting a bit outdated, and with new wheelsizes taking hold, it was high time for a new fork. We recently brought you the news that it has been completely redeveloped for 2015, and now we have one in the office for testing and we’ve got more details to share.
Fox had seven objectives when designing a new fork.
1. Significant weight reduction while retaining strength and stiffness
The chassis is new from top to bottom, with small weight reductions adding up to a significantly lighter fork.
- 1.5 tapered steerer = 34g lighter
- 1.5 crowns = 45g lighter
- Upper tube set = 114g lighter
- Lower leg = 98g lighter
- 20mm thru-axle and hardware = 65g lighter than 20QR system
- FLOAT air spring = 94g lighter
2. Dramatic friction reduction
Multiple improvements in the damper, air spring, bushings and internal and external finishes reduce friction for better small bump compliance.
3. Improve RC2 damper tunes
The RC2 was already a great damper (I wish FOX would develop a version for the 34!) and multiple changes should make it even better. Lighter viscosity oil imp[roves rebound performace, and updated seal head improves damping consistancy. The damper tune is updated for modern riding styles and bikes.
4. Improve air spring system
This is the most interesting news to me. The air spring does away with the coil negative spring in the past, replacing it with a self balancing air negative spring. This drops weight, and should make the fork work better for riders who fall at the heavy or light ends of the weight spectrum. Maybe we’ll see this feature trickle down to the other forks in the line up?
5. Convertible 15/20 mm thru-axle design
This might seem minor, but for riders with a previous generation 36 (with a 20mm axle), or current 34 or Pike (with 15mm axle) looking to upgrade to a new fork this is very, very smart. Aftermarket forks will come with both axles in the box.
6. Accommodate all wheel sizes
Yes, even 29er fans will get the 36 love here, and 26-inch hasn’t been abandoned. Good news for everyone.
Each size gets its own offset:
- 26 – 37mm
- 27.5 – 44mm
- 29 – 51mm
7. Internally adjustable travel
With a huge range of bikes looking for bigger forks, Fox wanted to insure most riders can get the travel they want. Some riders may find the themselves running more travel than before, as the 36 actually has a lower axle to crown than the 34.
There are two air spring/damper configurations, one that works from 110-160mm of travel, and one for 130 to 180mm. Easily installed, threaded collars adjust travel in 10mm increments.
The TALAS returns as well, now in its fifth revision. Travel reduction is set at 30mm from the factory, but can be set anywhere from 5-40mm in 5mm increments with spacers.
The new 36 will only be a Factory level fork, no Performance or Evolution series are available yet. Stock travel sizes will be:
- 26 – 160 and 180mm
- 27.5 – 160 and 170mm
- 29- 150 and 160mm
- $1,035 – 1 1/8″ steerer
- $1,050 – tapered steerer
- $1,150 – TALAS