Slimmed down without losing muscle.
FOX's 32 Step-Cast Fork was brought to market a few years ago to shave every last gram for cross-country efficiency, albeit at the expense of stiffness and support, seeing it's only packing 100 millimeters of travel and svelte 32-millimeter stanchions. Realizing many trail riders and cross-country racers desired a bit more travel and support from their lightweight fork, FOX designed the 34 Float SC 27.5 120 3-Pos-Adj FIT4 Boost Fork to significantly reduce weight from a traditional 34 Float Fork, but without forgoing much in terms of stiffness and support as you drop into rocky descents and pummel over root-infested singletrack.
The secret to its incredibly lightweight disposition lies in the stepped lowers of the 34 Step-Cast, which are hollowed out to reduce weight, complete with shortened shaft lengths and the same 8-millimeter damper shaft as used in the 32 Step-Cast Fork. In terms of actual weight savings, you'll find it's approximately 4.8 ounces lighter than a comparable 32 Float with 120 millimeters of travel and a whopping 8 ounces lighter than a 34 Float with 140 millimeters of travel. Both of these figures might not seem like a big deal, but they're pretty significant seeing the lengths some riders go for weight savings, especially in a world where carbon components will cost you a pretty penny and likely not reduce as much weight as running this 34 Step-Cast Fork.
Instead of being solely intended for cross-country domination, the 34 Step-Cast sets its sights on everything from epic trail rides to marathon events and adventure races where you'll find a mixture of trail conditions ranging from smooth-buffed dirt to bumpy root and rock sections. Seeing it's packing 34-millimeter stanchions, it's inherently stiffer than the more spindly 32 Step-Cast. In fact, FOX claims it's a whopping 15 percent stiffer than a 120-millimeter Float 32 Fork and it's on par with a 34 Float with 140 millimeters of travel, in terms of stiffness and support on bigger hits and technical terrain. Ultimately, this means you'll be able to use a trail-worthy fork on your cross-country race machine or short-travel trail bike without sacrificing efficiency or losing the support you've become accustomed to with a 34 Float.
Delving into the air spring and damper available with the 34 Step-Cast, you'll find it's similar to what you've likely been riding on FOX for the past couple of seasons, which is a good thing if you enjoy bump-smoothing compliance and traction, as well as three on-the-fly adjustable settings and separate low-speed compression tuning. The Float air spring has EVOL, which is FOX's term for increasing the negative air spring volume for a more supple feel that's more responsive to soaking up bumps, rocks, and roots along the way. FOX then uses their Fit4 damper with 3-position adjust, which is carried over from 34 Float to give you Open, Medium, and Firm settings with the simple flick of a knob, plus the ability to dial the low-speed compression to your exact liking in the Open mode.
- Feathery efficiency without sacrificing trail support
- Designed for grueling adventure races and epic trail rides
- 34 Step-Cast with 120mm of travel and Kabolt 110 bolt-on axle
- Stepped, hollowed-out lowers significantly reduce its weight
- Stiffness is similar to what you'd find in a 140mm 34 Float
- Float air spring with EVOL for better small-bump compliance
- Fit 4 damper with 3-position adjust: Open, Medium, Firm modes
- 27.5in model of the 34 Step-Cast clears wider 2.8in tires