This May, Fox invited us to the South Tyrol, for an exclusive test of the brand-new 36 fork. First Pictures and specifications of the fork have been around for a while now, yet actual ride reports on the new flagship fork from the Californian suspension specialists were rare? We had the opportunity to compare the new 36 fork back-to-back with the Fox 34. In this first part, we dive into the features – expect a review later this evening!
Robin tests the new Fox 36 on the rough trails in South Tyrol.
Before we get to our riding impressions, we’d like to look at the main features of the Fox 36 Float 2015. While Fox-Marketing Manager Chris Trojer didn’t say a single word about the intended use of the fork at first, he explained the goals of the development of the Fox 36.
To celebrate the 40th anniversary, Fox ships the Fox 36 with special heritage decals.
- Significant weight reduction while retaining strength and stiffness
- Dramatic friction reduction
- Improve RC2 damper tunes
- Improve air spring system
- Accommodate all wheel sizes (26″, 27.5″, 29″)
- Internally adjustable travel
To save weight, the Fox engineers dug deep down into their box of tricks.
Both the steerer and the crown were updated to save weight and increase stiffness – the new Fox 36 has the same axle-to-crown length as the Fox 34. Switching the fork does not change the geometry of the bike.
A new finish on the Kashima upper tubes (internal and external) reduces friction.
Arch and dropout designs evolved from the 2014 Fox 40: Downhill technology goes enduro!
Honeycomb-structure of the arch.
180 mm direct disc brake post mount
Convertible thru-axle design
The convertible thru-axle design works with 15mm and 20mm axles.
Small aluminum-plates secure the adapters in place, even when the axle is removed.
Saves weight but costs time and nerves: Four screws and the axle need to be opened with a minitool.
The FIT cartridge. The rebound knob is located under the cover cap
High- and Low-Speed-compression can be set on the right stanchion. Thanks to a new seal head design, the friction of the FIT-cartridge is reduced.
Instead of 10w, Fox now uses 5w damper oil. The lower viscosity should improve rebound performance.
The new Fox 36 fork.
The Float-system (FOX Load Optimized Air Technology) was updated too, saving 94 grams.
A new positive/negative-chamber-system reduces feedback (less vibrations to bars) Air spring is tunable via volume spacers.
Text: Robin Schmitt / Aaron Steinke Photos: Robin Schmitt / Chris Trojer / FOX