Adapt to your surroundings.
The beauty of Fox's travel adjust system, available here on the 2013 Talas 34 160 CTD FIT Fork, is that you can drop the travel from 160mm to 120mm, making it equally capable riding uphill or down. And, that’s just the beginning of this forks versatile nature. It's also equipped with Fox's new damping system, CTD, which is an acronym for climb, trail, descend.
Fox forks have traditionally been featured packed, offering the ability to make all adjustments needed to tune the fork for any condition. The only problem was the difficulty for the average rider to make knowledgeable tweaks to the forks. High- and low-speed compression, lockout threshhold, preload, and rebound are all common adjustments, but, for the guy who wants to ride, and not relentlessly and aimlessly tune a fork, this can have a negative result on performance and user experience.
With CTD (climb, trail, descend), one lever quickly and easily switches the fork's compression to ideal settings for the task at hand. The climb setting adds plenty of low-speed compression to mitigate bobbing when standing on the pedals. Trail mode offers moderate low-speed compression to balance efficiency with optimum trail manners, and it's also independently adjustable with three settings; soft, medium, and firm. Finally the Descend setting features high- and low-speed compression for plush action on steep and aggressive sections of trail.
Another key feature to this new Fox is a redesigned spring curve for forks 130mm and above. There's now a more linear spring rate. This is achieved by using a longer negative spring and by reducing the air spring’s compression ratio. The resulting curve gives these air forks a more coil-like feel, and it also uses more of its travel because the preload won't ramp up.
More good news comes from the lowers as well, for 2013 they are now 50 grams lighter than last year's comparable model. While that may not seem significant, keep in mind dropping mass from the lowers effectively reduces un-sprung weight — which affects the amount of inertia the damper needs to control, resulting in enhanced suspension action. To drop the weight, Fox's engineers retained the Float's respected torsional stiffness by redesigning the brace, dropouts, and wall thickness.
This is also the first time Fox has offered its 34mm stanchion on a platform other than a 29er. These forks offer comparable stiffness to the 36mm stanchions forks, but weigh in at about a half pound lighter. The 2013 Fox 34 Talas 26 160 CTD FIT Fork comes in Black with the smooth and durable Kashima coating on the stanchion tubes. It's offered here with a tapered, 1.5 to 1-1/8in steerer, and a 15QR axle.
Share your thoughts
Nice 36 replacement
I was apprehensive about the Fox 34 replacing the Fox 36 for AM riding, I worried it would somehow feel weaker or would affect my riding because I was concerned about too much abuse that the 36 could easily handle. But after a few months of riding it, and getting it through the break in period, I am confident that it is a worthy replacement for the 36 and with the weight savings I can't imagine going back to the 36 for any reason.
My initial impression was not favorable, but after it broke in and became more plush I became a convert. This is my first Kashima coated fork and I do have to say it is buttery smooth!