2010 marks an exciting year for Fox Racing Shox with a ton of new and truly innovative products coming from Bob Fox’s team of engineers and factory test riders. Boost valve technology is now standard in the Float rear shock and there’s also a new DH-specific rear shock called the DHX RC4 that looks super promising.
Tipping the scales at just under 4lbs, the Fox 32 TALAS 150 FIT RLC fork is a diverse, stiff trail bike weapon. With what may be one of the longest product names in mountain biking, the 32 TALAS is designed to be a jack-of-all-trades for riders who want maximum adjustability, efficiency when climbing but long travel for descents. The Bottom Line: 2010 Fox 32 TALAS 150 RLC Fork Hit the trails and hang on tight because the new Fox 32 TALAS fork is solid and smooth. For 150mm travel, this fork is light and tracks as straight as forks with much more beef. The myriad of adjustments should put this fork at the front of the pack when shopping for a new suspension fork.
In addition, Fox has taken the hugely successful FIT damper technology from the DH and FR shocks and scaled it for 32mm XC and Trail forks for a new level of performance across the boards. Along with the new damper, the 32mm chassis is now compatible with QR15 thru-axle systems as well. The (MSRP $870) comes in at a feather light 3.88lbs with 150mm of travel (1 1/8 steering tube) compared to last year’s 140mm version at 3.97lbs. FIT stands for Fox Isolated Technology and the FIT damper basically reduces oil volume and weight by 71g. The damper also produces a reduction in un-sprung weight (weight not supported by the air spring) which ultimately increases tire-to-ground responsiveness and traction. Another major benefit of the FIT damper is the elimination of fluid aeration which translates into consistent damping, even over washboard trails. This is accomplished through a bladder that holds the fluid in a vacuum sealed, reduced volume chamber to prevent fluid from foaming up when traveling though the piston.
For those who might be skeptical about the QR15 thru-axle, it’s definitely time to reconsider. The QR15 was developed in collaboration with Shimano and the engineers optimized the design for weight, stiffness, and packaging for XC to light AM bikes. Bikes with the QR15 have 15% greater torsional fork stiffness with a full 25% gain in transverse shear. Ultimately this increases rider confidence and makes the fork a stronger, stiffer unit, with sixth-sense-like steering response. On The Trails Once everything was dialed in (see my article on ) I had some great opportunities to give this fork a workout with varied terrain from rollers and rooted terrain to fast, dry, hard pack on the Don trail network here in Ontario.
To be honest I didn’t pay much attention to the fork for the first couple of hours of riding since most forks, including this one, need time to get broken in and to get all the seals set and working correctly. During my warm-up I found I needed to increase my initial compression and rebound settings. New testament student manual religion 211-212. After working the kinks out I really started paying attention to how the 32 Float 150 works. I have to say for a fork that has only 150mm of travel it rides like it has much more than that. The travel seemed especially long when the fork started hitting rougher, extended rooted surfaces where the 32 Float performed fantastically. Ultimately this fork seemed to perform nearly as well as the Fox 36 Talas despite the smaller diameter stanchions. This unit is a whole 1.1 lbs lighter than the 36 Talas and the narrower stanchions make this fork great for the aggressive trail rider who can make do with 10mm less travel.
Hitting 4-foot drops was nothing for this fork and it soaked up the drops as if they were sidewalk curbs. So with that bit of experience I started hitting bigger 6- and 7-foot set downs with smooth transitions with no worries and a big smile.
I noticed that the harder the fork worked, the more comfortable it felt, much like the not too long ago. In the corners I definitely noticed a huge improvement over the 9mm wheel mount version that I tested last year. For starters I noticed my discs didn’t rub in berms and flat corners – the old version flexed enough that the hub would torque slightly and the disc would rub on my brake pad. Needless to say, the QR15 is well worth the upgrade by itself (that is if you have a QR15 wheelset or plan on getting one soon). The QR15 really did improve tracking on the trail and kept me pointed where I wanted to go.
If there were one thing I would improve on this fork it would be the compression dials and indicators. Unlike another fork I also ride often, the amount of difference from one click to the next on the 32 Float 150 FIT RLC is not as clearly defined which means it takes a bit of luck to find the right levels. All in all, the Fox 150 FIT RLC is a great mountain bike fork. It tracks precisely, takes bumps, roots and drops with ease, and soaks up terrain like a mop.
This fork may not be the lightest around but it is certainly very tough and responsive. I would definitely recommend the Fox 32 Float 150 FIT RLC to any of my long legged trail bike friends!
Fox's latest-generation 32 Talas 150 FIT RLC 15QR fork is an excellent fit for the latest crop of aggressive cross-country riders who call six-inch bikes their everyday home yet still need to climb on a regular basis. Related Articles.
Fox Talas Rl Fork
The move from a three-position to a two-position travel adjuster sheds 10mm of total adjustment range but the simplified 120/150mm system that remains is still an improvement in real-world trail conditions. Simply twist the big finger-friendly crown-mounted knob a quarter-turn to lower the front end for steep ascents then leave the fork fully extended for everything else – no need to worry about what to do with that awkward middle setting anymore. Convenience updates aside, the new Kashima Coat stanchion surface treatment and a notably more linear air spring curve substantially changes the fork's overall personality as compared to last year's model. Static and kinetic friction are both markedly reduced throughout the stroke for a much smoother ride quality on washboard and stutter bumps, less jolting through the bars on square-edged hits, and less confusion overall when hitting a wide range of terrain features at higher speed.
The more coil-like spring rate feels more bottomless than Fox's fixed-travel Float range, too, though careful tuning of the low-speed compression damping is needed to prevent excessive brake dive, especially on steeper terrain. In fact, some riders may find the spring rate too linear now so be sure to compare if possible. Our recommendation would be to pair the TALAS fork with similar feeling rear suspension designs like the Trek Remedy whereas something more progressive like Pivot Cycle's Mach 5.8 would likely be better matched to the Float. Either way, damping performance from the sealed FIT cartridge damper is absolutely faultless with superbly controlled motion on an incredibly diverse range of terrain plus a usefully wide adjustment window for low-speed compression and rebound damping as well as lockout blow-off threshold. Toss whatever you can throw at this thing during a typical trail ride and it's likely that the TALAS will not only handle it but charge through with confidence. Especially challenging conditions are where the FIT cartridge excels the most, as Fox's open-bath design could very occasionally struggle to keep up in extreme situations – no more here as the oil is always separated from the air to keep foaming at bay and the internal tuning always feels spot-on.
The rebound knob's relocation to the bottom of the leg also makes more sense to us than the older arrangement. Rebound is something you're likely to dial and leave be whereas riders are more apt to fiddle with the threshold adjuster during the course of a ride depending on the conditions.
Impressed as we are with the Kashima Coat, though, it still doesn't completely offset the main drawback of the FIT design, namely the reduced oil volume for bushing lubrication. When the oil's fresh and present in the right quantities, the Kashima-equipped TALAS is remarkably supple. That small volume of oil still has a somewhat short lifespan, however, and while the stanchion coating does help extend the service intervals and keep fork a little more freely moving than without, it's still nowhere near the months-long intervals of the older open bath setup. Thankfully, it's an easy service to perform (taking as little as 10-15 minutes once you've gotten the hang of it) but one that we'd prefer not to do. One of our testers has also reported that his FIT-equipped sample seemed more sensitive to cold temperatures than older open-bath models, too.
From a structural standpoint, the 15mm quick-release thru-axle is still as effective and simple to use as it's always been, lending some additional steering precision to the 32mm tubes in this stretched-to-the-limit longer-travel application. While we found the chassis stiff enough in most situations overall – especially for the trail bike category at which this fork is directed – riders that tend to put bigger demands on their equipment will still want for more. Those folks will likely want to consider the burlier 36 series but they'll have to give up the 32 TALAS's respectable 1.69kg (3.72lb) weight (without axle) to get it.