FOX Racing Shox 40 R $1,250.00
Slay the run.
While the tech-fiend in us is drawn to Fox's air sprung 40 Float RC2 wonder-fork, we realize that the majority of downhill mountain bikers prefer their suspension to be simple and effective. If that sounds like you, allow us to introduce you to the Fox 40 R. It sees an all-new chassis that drops nearly a pound off of the previous version, and the proven coil spring and simplified adjustments take the guesswork out finding your perfect suspension settings. So, whether you prefer to shuttle, crank out laps in the bike park, or are getting your feet wet on the race-scene, you'll get nothing but a plush, reliable quality from the 40 R.
While Fox's top-tier 40 Float RC2 gets an air spring, the 40 R stays true to its heritage by running on a coil spring. And while a coil lacks the fine tuning capabilities that an air spring provides, the three included springs bridge the gap between bantam-weights and Clydesdales with a quick spring swap. Additional tuning springs are available if you find yourself outside of the weight range, but the included springs provide a perfect setup for all but the lightest or heaviest riders. The upshot is that a coil sprung fork provides the plushest possible feel, and accommodates longer intervals between service than an air-sprung fork. This means that your suspension feels dialed, even if you prefer riding to wrenching.
The external adjustments are also simplified as compared to the 40 Float RC2. Basically, you lose out on externally adjustable high- and low-speed compression, but retain external rebound adjustment and preload. This means that you're still able to control the return rate to compensate for spring rate, trail conditions, and personal preference. Additionally, the preload adjustment gives you an added degree of control over how plush the fork is in the beginning of the stroke. Don't worry, while you won't find external adjustments for high- and low-speed compression, the compression damping is handled by Fox's open-bath shim stack damper. So, you'll still have plenty of control when the terrain gets rough.
The 40 chassis also sees significant improvements in the form of lightened lowers, crowns, and stanchions. Those updates shave a combined 300 grams off of the previous version. That's almost a pound saved, with no loss in strength. Those of you who have ever had a bolt stuck in your fork lowers will appreciate that this version of the 40 employs replaceable threaded inserts at the brake mount and dropouts. Essentially, this makes stripped threads and broken bolts manageable, instead of catastrophic. But, perhaps the coolest upgrade is a bleed port on the back of each seal on the lowers. The bleed port enables you to equalize pressure that's built up in the lowers. Pressure buildup comes from a combination of temperature and altitude changes, and that excess pressure causes friction at the seals. Having the ability to equalize that pressure at the top of a run, with just a quick push of a button, ensures that your fork is as supple as can be.
The Fox 40 R Fork is available in the color White. Please note that fork is only compatible with a 20x110mm axle and 26-inch wheels.