Ask Pinkbike: Boxxer Forks, Torque Wrenches, Bad Days & Used vs New

Jul 16, 2019
by Daniel Sapp  

Here at Pinkbike, we get inundated with all kinds of questions, ranging from the basic "Can I have stickers" to more in-depth, soul-searching types of queries like if you should pop the question or what to name your first child. Ask Pinkbike is an occasional column where we'll be hand-picking and answering questions that have been keeping readers up at night, although we'll likely steer clear of those last two and keep it more tech-oriented.




Difference Between the Boxxer Select, RC, WC & Ultimate Forks

Question: @IllestT asks in the Downhill Forum: What's the difference between the 2019 Boxxer Select, RC, WC, and Ultimate models? The SRAM website is pretty vague. I think they're all air-sprung and all have some version of the Charger bladder style damper, but beyond that, I can't tell.

bigquotes
New Naming: RockShox made a move with their signature forks (SID, Pike, Lyrik, and Boxxer) to simplify the naming system. They decided the RC, RC2, and World Cup tags were pretty confusing, so RockShox ditched those names and are now offering a "Select series" and an "Ultimate series" for each model. The Boxxer is the simplest, as it's only available as a Select or Ultimate versions aftermarket. Dealing with OEM's, however, has expanded the Select nomenclature of the SID, Pike, and Lyrik. to include Select Plus and added Ultimate Carbon to some forks as well.

Boxxer 101: To answer your original question, you've listed models from two different years. With regards to the 2020 models, the Boxxer Select has a DebonAir spring, with a Charger RC damper, which has externally adjustable rebound and low-speed compression damping. The Boxxer Ultimate has the new Charger 2.1 RC2 damper, which offers externally adjustable rebound and high- and low-speed compression damping. It also has new SKF seals for extra-smooth performance.


RockShox 2020
Naming a series of products can be confusing, but RockShox are doing their best to simplify it.




Recommendations for a Torque Wrench?

Question: @JP4673 asks in the Mechanics' Lounge Forum: Ok. Be gentle. I'm fairly new to MTB scene and recently upgraded from a Specialized Rockhopper to a Nukeproof Mega Factory.

Looking at it all, it seems the maintenance torque values are pretty much gospel. All of my torque wrenches are big and heavy for trucks and motorbikes, so I need to get something smaller that starts around 2-4nM. What are your recommendations, as there is a huge variety out there and I don’t want to buy cheap and pay twice?


bigquotesGood call on being willing to use a torque wrench. While a lot of people get by without one (and claim their wrist is the only meter they need), it's not the safest or smartest way to be wrenching on a bike. Bicycle parts are lightweight and hardware is kept small for weight considerations.

There are a few good wrenches out there that I've used. But, if you want simple, you can buy dedicated torque (4, 5 and 6mm) keys that are calibrated to one setting, typically 4.5-5.1nm, for stem bolts. I prefer adjustable wrenches that can cover a wide range. Since it seems that's what you're going for, here are some options worth considering:

Effetto Mariposa's Giustaforza II is fancy and has lasted me a long time. It's not cheap at well over $100 but it's quality. Another option is Silca's torque wrench which is a little less money and also a very high-quality product. A slightly more value-oriented option is the Range from Feedback Sports. Any one of those will serve you for a long time and help you keep from under or over-torquing important bolts on your bike.

Interbike 2018
Feedback's Range torque wrench comes with a nice carrying case and is small enough to tuck away in the glove box of your car.




Training When You're Feeling Down

Question: @JP4673 asks in the Fitness, Training, and Health Forum: I've been training for a 50k race and over the past couple of months I've been delighted to witness a consistent increase in both strength and overall fitness.

Woke up this morning after a good sleep, drank a coffee, ate my usual breakfast, hit the trails around 11, and immediately felt like I had zero energy. After trying to push through it, I wound up shakey, sleepy, and unable to come up with the motivation to continue.

I just got in the door and I'm feeling pretty gutted. Part of me knows it's just an off day, and I'll probably be back to normal tomorrow, but there is ever-present feeling, "Oh God! I have no explanation for what just happened. What if this happens on race day?"

How do you cope when your ride/training/race doesn't go as expected? And, because everyone's body is different, what is our body trying to tell us when the energy to perform just isn't there, despite no changes to our regimen?


bigquotesThis is a good question and it can be a little different for everyone. The basic principle is, if you're tired, you'll need to rest - and don't feel bad about it. Some rides just don't work and it doesn't sound like you've been lacking effort, so write it off and get on with your day.

When this does happen, my first suspicion is an insufficient amount of recovery. The more you train, the more you need to rest. The equation for getting stronger is simple: stress leads to fatigue, you recover, and then you're stronger. If your riding routine hasn't changed, consider that travel, work stress, and home stress all add into the sum of your training schedule. Stress is stress, and it factors into your training equation.

One reason a lot of riders have a coach is to help manage this "work" cycle because it can be complicated and difficult to understand at times. It's not always the same and while you may feel great doing what you are for a few weeks, eventually you're going to need some change in your routine. Nothing is "by the book." There are times when you'll want to push through the fatigue, and times when you want to really take recovering seriously. Err on the recovery side, because when you overtrain, your risk of illness and injury increases significantly.

Leading into a race, top riders will take a couple of weeks to recover from a hard training block and simply maintain the fitness they have already accumulated. If extra rest and good eating for a few days don't improve things, or you still feel off and can't break the slump, it's always a good idea to consult with a doctor to make sure nothing more serious is going on.

What giving it your all looks like.
Feeling wrecked and with zero energy at the end of a hard workout or race is one thing, but if you're out of gas before you start, it's probably time to take five and relax.




Older, Top-Spec Carbon vs. New, Lower-Spec Alloy

Question: @JP4673 asks in the All Mountain, Enduro & Cross Country Forum: Hey guys- My bike has just been stolen or lost, as the airline goofballs at Easyjet put it. I now need to buy new everything.

I do a lot of riding and a lot of traveling, just rode Sri Lanka and the Alps and enjoy some serious downhill action and don't mind climbing. The question - I have about 2000GBP total for bike and gear, what are your thoughts on going for an older (2014 or so) higher spec carbon bike like Lapierre, Santa Cruz, Yeti, YT, or similar versus going for a newer lower spec alloy bike?


bigquotesWell, it's never fun when you're the last one standing at an empty baggage claim and it's turned off without your bike, bag, or whatever having shown up. Sounds like you lucked out and are at least getting something for it.

Without question, I would recommend going with a new lower spec'd alloy bike. While you may get what seem to be fancy parts on the older one, they're possibly a little more worn and definitely more dated. The technology used in high-end parts five years ago is behind what's used in the low-end parts today in many situations. Geometries on bikes have also evolved dramatically, and now there are a number of more affordable bikes that climb AND descend very well. Check out our Value MTB of the Year Nominations if you need some recommendations.

Transition Scout NX
Starting with fresh suspension, new tires, undented rims, perfect brakes and a drivetrain that has never seen grit can make buying new the right option.




Have an unresolved tech or fitness question? Jump in the Pinkbike Forum and we'll look to answer it for next time.


133 Comments

  • + 191
 "RockShox made a move with their signature forks (SID, Pike, Lyrik, and Boxxer) to simplify the naming system. The RC, RC2, and World Cup tags were pretty confusing"

Bullshit...

"The Boxxer Ultimate has the new Charger 2.1 RC2"

How was it confusing to put the external damper adjustments in the name? "Ultimate" means nothing, and in fact it's worse than before because now you have to know that Ultimate equals RC2, instead of just having RC2 in the name.
  • + 21
 Spot on
  • + 9
 Yup. You win today.
  • + 46
 Yeah, it's like hair gel strength: mega hold, super hold, ultimate hold, rc2 hold... you can't tell the difference!
  • - 17
flag scottyrides5 (Jul 16, 2019 at 14:25) (Below Threshold)
 Just throw all your Rockshox suspensions in the trash. Probem solved. #SRAMtheSCAM
  • + 5
 Yeah I just got a 2017 Pike on a used bike- my first Sram suspension product. Took a minute to learn RC, RC2, RCT3, 2.1 but I got the hang of it. Then I was meandering on the Sram site looking at 2020 stuff and it was just confusing to align RC = select or whatever.
  • + 7
 I don't have to worry about what they call their products. Not buying anything made by them.
  • - 5
flag zyoungson (Jul 16, 2019 at 18:29) (Below Threshold)
 Rockshox can get f*cked in general with their marketing and average products
  • - 3
 Look at the old Boxer RC,see what's inside the damper. Just a plastic cartridge with no shims. And that's what had RS done on their begiiner level forks,and probably what is BEING done.
  • + 6
 @JuliusZhuang: you know shims are only there to deflect the oil path, same with that plastic thingy and same as with my needle metering suspension systems out there. if you don't know what Shims are for don't complain if you can't find them in a basic fork setup
  • - 2
 @scottyrides5: I bought a bike which came with a lot of sram stuff and didn't even realize how awful it was. Thank you for opening my eyes, kind sir! I will now go and uninstall anything that has to do with sram from my bike and toss it in the garbage. Thank you kind man!
  • + 2
 RockShox Forks have served me flawlessly for the last 20 years. The worst technical issue I ever had was losing a rebound knob. I bounce back from that failure pretty quickly.
  • + 1
 @BaGearA: preach it 100%
  • + 1
 @pinnityafairy: You're one of the lucky ones. Had so many problems with their products over the last 25 years I just choose to avoid them when possible. There are other companies out there with better products ..
  • + 1
 @BeerGuzlinFool: I would prefer a Cane Creek Helm but I always end up getting a bro deal on my RockShox and cannot justify paying three times the amount for the helm.
  • + 0
 @BeerGuzlinFool: that's exactly how I feel about Fox Racing. Nothing but problems and the dyad rt2 put me in the hospital for a while. FUX SUX!;-)
  • + 50
 If you want a quality torque wrench don't believe they're advertising hype. Stick with real tools like Snap-on, SK, Mac, and Cornwell. I always laugh at people who buy the overpriced bicycle specific BS. If you're that worried about bicycle specific tools just paint them Park Tool blue and no one will know the difference.;-)
  • + 7
 yes and no, I have had a few Snap-On torque wrenches be 5 to 10 nm out right out of the box. If you are super concerned have them tested and calibrated. 5nm out on a 12,000 carbon road bike is the difference between a happy customer and our shop buying that same customer some new parts and or a bike frame. Most consistant torque wrench I have had is the Shimano PRO mini torque wrench. Have had it sent out for calibration twice now and still after 5 years the damn thing is nearly bang on.... got it on Jensonusa.com on sale for cheap too haha
  • + 1
 @TheBearDen: My local shop has the Pro torque wrench and I want to buy it. All of my parts are aluminum though so idk if I need one
  • + 11
 I'll do you one better and say skip the Snap-On, SK, Mac hype and get one made by the company that makes them for the tool truck brands, CDI. All a Snap-On torque wrench is is a CDI with a Snappy ratchet head and logo, no need for a ratchet on a bike torque wrench IMHO. I use this one www.amazon.com/Products-TorqControl-TLA28NM-Screwdriver-Magnetic/dp/B01DIRD5CG/ref=sr_1_32?crid=2CLPRWQE6KHFF&keywords=cdi+1%2F4+drive+torque+wrench&qid=1563306713&s=gateway&sprefix=cdi+1%2F4%22%2Caps%2C174&sr=8-32
  • + 5
 ex World Cup wrench chiming in, from an era when Snap-on was the bomb, but then turned down a less than stellar road and I got rid of all my snap on tools (as I lost or overused the good versions). So, im sure there are better options.
  • + 5
 I completely agree with you, although for me as a German it’s Hazet. But as those brands you mentioned don’t spend their money marketing their stuff as bike specific so a normal cyclist might have never heard of those ‘proper’ tool brands.
I also really don’t understand how the Effetto Mariposa can be recommended. In the shop I worked at we had to use them and they were hard to set to a certain value as the white line would become dirty/greasy and the adjuster is quite unergonomic. Furthermore there is no handle to force the hand in the right/calibrated position (the torque value depends on it)
  • + 10
 X-Tools 2-24nm Torque Wrench
Comes with 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10mm hex heads, T25 and T30 Torx heads and a case
I paid $39.00 CAD a few months ago for it.

I know it may not be "quality", but for the average home mechanic, it's amazing.
  • + 2
 @matt-15: I work on bikes and parts made of all materials. everything is finished off with a torque wrench.Its a good habit to get into.
  • + 3
 I have yet to see anyone specifically mention the Park Tools torque wrenches. I would like to hear peoples thoughts on them are they good but but overpriced because they are marketed as bike specific? I have the TW-5.2 and it seems to be a pretty nice little wrench with a 2-14nm range that pretty much covers all I usually need it for.
  • - 5
flag gabriel-mission9 (Jul 16, 2019 at 14:54) (Below Threshold)
 @jmjr: the torque value depends on your hand being in the right position?
No it doesnt.
The torque wrench will let you know when the correct torque has been applied. It doesnt care whether you hang 20g off a 30meter bar or 2000g off a 30cm bar.
  • + 3
 @maxyedor: That little CDI wrench works brilliantly. no tool truck hype necessary @pinnityafairy you can paint the words "snap-on" if it makes ya feel better.
  • + 1
 @gabriel-mission9: Nope. Just read the instructions of your wrench. Here an article in English blog.mountztorque.com/how-to/understanding-why-length-dependency-impacts-the-use-of-a-torque-wrench
  • + 1
 @TheBearDen: Shimano makes the best stuff on Earth. What is a road bike?
  • + 2
 @matt-15: my aluminum renthal stem got over torqued and is now useless
  • + 2
 @Ryan2949: Not even listed on the specs but it also comes with T20! I just used mine last night Smile I had never seen a T20 bolt in my life until the mounting hardware for a rack for my commuter. Thought I'd have to do 4nm by feel but lo and behold there was the T20 in the upper right hand corner of the case!
  • + 2
 @maxyedor: I second (or third, I guess) CDI. I think the one linked to above is also available in a "bike specific" version if you're interested...don't remember what brand, though.

I'd also consider the dial type from CDI. They cost more but in theory don't wear out and if I recall correctly don't require calibration as frequently. Only downside is that they work best for low torque applications as it's helpful to be able to see the dial as you tighten the fastener which can be difficult when you need two hands and a bit of omph. There's only a couple of parts on a bike like that though.
  • + 3
 Lol I don't disagree... but really Snap-On is majorly overpriced automotive BS.
  • + 1
 Any thoughts on this wrench? Seems like very little to go wrong...

www.chainreactioncycles.com/mobile/topeak-combo-torq-wrench/rp-prod137802
  • + 3
 @dicky1080: Dave from CyclingTips.com chiming in. Avoid that particular Topeak wrench, the ones I've tested have been terribly inaccurate. Topeak's Digital D-Torq is a very nice tool though (it's a rebrand out of Taiwan, Unior sell the identical one, too).
  • + 1
 @MmmBones: The CDI's are really nice! I have two to cover all torque ranges needed in my shop.
  • + 1
 I've got one from Wiha. I like that you hold it like a screwdriver instead of a ratchet so it is easier to just apply a torque and not also introduce a bending load. It goes up to 6Nm in quarter Nm increments.
  • + 0
 You can calibrate a torque wrench with a luggage scale, there are videos on yt showing how to, not that difficult if you can put aside the time to do it.
  • + 6
 @zyoungson: how do you calibrate your luggage scale? With your torque wrench?
  • + 1
 @aps62: You silly... Hang your suitcage onto your luggage scale and calibrate it back so that it shows zero. Remember how many turns on the dial that was. Then put a stone in the suitcase and measure again. This should show 6.3502932kg. Adjust the dial if it doesn't. Now turn the dial back in the other direction the number of turns you remembered first and the luggage scale is calibrated. So now it is calibrated to kgf. All you have to do now is to multiply this by 9.80665 to get it in Newton (or a different number depending on where on the world you live).

Now obviously the torque wrench measures torque whereas the luggage scale measures force. Ideally of course you should take someones calibrated foot as a lever to stick to the torque wrench, but it is hard to get volunteers willing to part with their foot these days. A shoe should suffice. Ideally you'd take a carbon soled road cycling shoe because stiffness is everything when you really want to be accurate.

Honestly, calibrate the luggage scale with the torque wrench... What were you thinking?
  • + 2
 I’ll add Norbar torque wrenches to the list if they haven’t been added already. I have one that goes 1-20nm and have had it for 10+ years. It’s still kicking and built like a tank.
  • + 1
 @maxyedor: thank you for that
  • + 3
 Harbor Freight $11 w coupon. Maybe it won't hold aerospace-calibrated precision or be a family heirloom, but ELEVEN DOLLARS!
  • + 2
 @dicky1080: That's essentially a beam style torque wrench, great for setting bearing preload, pretty marginal for torquing bolts. You basically watch a needle on the scale and stop turning when it points to the right number, easy to go past the torque value you're after, and easy to mis-read if you're at a weird angle. I prefer a "clicker" style for most tasks. I can see not wanting to shell out big money on a rarely used tool, but if you can bump your budget from $15 to $40-50 you can get a legitimate professional quality tool like the CDI I posted above. I really do like that CDI, so much so that I have 2, they're cheap, accurate, simple to use, and because they use 1/4" hex bits you can get replacement bits dirt cheap at the hardware store.
  • + 2
 @vinay: I confirm calibration of my Tq wrench with a milk jug! Weigh the jug, then hang off the wrench at mid grip position. Measure the distance to center of socket, and do some math. Tq= Force x Length
SO... jug weight x distance between socket center and center of grip location = torque on wrench. If wrench clicks at the determined number (or close enough to it!) I am happy. Simple Rocket appliances! Definitely confirm afterwards with a luggage scale though!
  • + 1
 @DaveRome: thanks for the input mate, some good info.
  • + 1
 @gnarnaimo: agreed but at least you're getting quality for the price. Also no tool on the planet holds a resale value better than Snap-on tools.
  • + 0
 @jmjr: interesting. I guess i stand corrected when referring to wrenches where the torque setting mechanism doesnt rotate concentrically with the bolt itself. However im not sure why this is. If the mechanIsm does rotate concentrically with the bolt then the wrench is not length dependant. So if the mechanism is a known fixed distance from the center of the bolt, then i dont see how this suddenly makes the wrench perform any differently. If you know the torque being applied at the mechanism (which is not length dependant) and the distance to the bolt, it should be possible to calculate the torque being applied to the bolt. Im going to spend bloody hours thinking about this now...
f*ck
  • + 0
 @pinnityafairy: Snap On quality is honestly pretty meh. I've switched from Snap On to Jet and Mastercraft Professional for fractions the cost and the quality is pretty damn similar. Snap On is a scam and people are suckers.
  • + 2
 @gabriel-mission9: I feel you, I also don't really understand the reason
  • + 1
 @mixmastamikal: as with most things Park Tools: it's always at least decent quality, but for the money, better products can be had from non bike specific manufacturers. Examples:
Wrenches: Knipex
Screw drivers: Wera/Wiha/PB Swiss
Sockets and wrenches: so many brands to choose from (Gedore/Teng Tools/Ko-Ken/Snap-On/etc.)
  • + 1
 @matt-15: there is an argument that you can still make use of one with no carbon. Lots of folks over wrench their parts alloy or carbon. high end alloy parts still have torx specs and can be broken or damaged I have a blk market stem slightly bent on the top bolt because the person I bought it from over tightened it he never noticed but I had it on a steerer that was longer I scraped the shit out of my steerer pulling it off to put a spacer underneath. Another more important part is that your stem, brake lever, seat,shifter. Are only supposed to be so tight that you can't move them while riding or pulling but not so tight that when you crash they can't move your levers should just move naturally when smashed on if it's too tight you will break any of those parts mentioned in stead of scraping your bars.
  • + 1
 @pinnityafairy: beg to differ Bridgeport mills, Hobart, Jon deer anything now that they are only leasing.
  • + 1
 @loganflores: thanks, I am now going to be $180 poorer
  • + 42
 Rockshox new naming system is less confusing?!? It used to be simple. RC=1 reb dial, 1 comp dial. R2C2=2 reb dials, 2 comp dials. It couldnt be any simpler. Now they call them select and ultimate and deluxe and other stupid names which tell you nothing useful at all. Brilliant....
  • + 3
 Word. I can't stand those sort of meaningless names, and even if you paid attention to whatever "ultimate" meant on a given fork, it might vary from model to model or year to year. Rockshox took a big step backwards with that shift in nomenclature. The even sadder thing is that they've done that sort of thing before, not in terms of naming conventions, but with their suspension tunes. I remember about 20yrs ago, they "detuned" their compression circuits on the Psylo models to make them feel super "plush" for people pushing on the bars on the showroom floor, at the expense of "on trail" performance, in an attempt to appeal to newbs. Same sort of marketing driven "logic" where they screw over their educated enthusiast fanbase in favor of winning sales with new or casual riders with more money than sense.

It starts to show you why some BMX brands advertise that they're "rider owned". As much as that term is nearly meaningless in the number of ways it can be spun and interpreted, it is an attempt to show that their products are a sort of "by us, for us" thing, and they are not catering to the dentist market (no offense meant to those hardcore MTBers who are also in the dental profession).
  • + 13
 So the bike i bought in 2014 that PB was raving then about great climbing and descending is now not even a decent 2nd hand option? F**k the new s**t, disposable culture.
  • + 9
 mtb tech moves fast and always has done. Bikes have changed a lot since 2014
  • + 1
 Yes, 26 and 27.5 are dead, no more FD or 10speed cassettes, seatpost's drop, and if you have +165mm of travel the go freeride. Welcome to 2020.
  • + 2
 If it's so good, why are you selling it? If your bike still fits you and your riding (and replacement parts are available) just ride it.

But someone who is looking for a new bike is often better off going new mid-range than used high-end. Some people have the knowledge to find the older model that suits them (eg: I found a 26er frame to match all my existing gear with minimal adapter-ing, and the geometry ended up close enough (single degrees, half dozen mm's) to the new bikes I was looking at), but newer riders are better served by just getting the most modern thing available to ensure it's upgradable for longer.
  • + 0
 @just6979: I've got two bikes from 2013 and have no plans to sell either of them. They rode great when i bought them and I've kept up their maintenance so they are still sweet to ride.

Around 2012/2013 most 140-160mm bikes became easy to climb and decent at descending - the one do it all bike was created. Goodbye to 2008 Spec Enduro type 150mm bikes that were alot of work to climb but smashed thr downs. Yeah wheel size has changed since 2013 but for most people thats mostly about personal preference on how a bike feels.

I'm not hating on the new stuff, just the myth that new is better than old so get ride of your old bike, which no surprise is always the push on PB reviews.

I have a 2017 bike that is also awesome like the older bikes, its not better than the other bikes its just different, longer lower slacker more stable decending, heavier versus shorter, nimble, stable climbing and lighter. Again, just another personal preference about how a bike feels to ride.
  • + 1
 @Ritgut: Wheel-size is not just about preference when shopping used bikes. There is _virtually zero_ new product coming out with 26er sizes included. No new rim, tire, or fork (except Fox 36 and Pike DJ [but not long travel Pike?]) technology will be available for upgrading if you get a 26er. Even the selection of replacements is getting very slim. The 26er stuff that is still out there is very low-end, for department store bikes.

Throw in Boost, internal dropper routing, metric shocks, even new suspension designs: putting a more linear air-spring shock like DPX2 or Super Deluxe on a frame designed for an older more-progessive shock is going to be quite a change in the feel... and there are a bunch of reasons to go new over used given similar prices.

Remember, no one is saying the 5 year old bikes aren't good, just that the new bikes are "better" for most newish riders: good traction and seating position = easier to sit and spin up climbs; longer reach and slacker headtuube = safer and more confident descending, droppers for comfort, Boost for strong & stable wheels, etc etc etc. A more experienced rider who knows what the want and might have a stash of parts that will fit can certainly keep or go get the 5 year old bike, but someone coming in fresh or maybe just making their first upgrade off the department store bike will be better off getting something new, even if it is still on the lower end of the bling spectrum.
  • + 1
 Yeah, I feel ya on that one, and have pondered this topic on several occasions. There is an argument to be made that standards are higher now, so the "standard against which bikes are judged" in 2014 may have been set at a lower bar than the standard today. That would provide a valid reason for them to rave about a bike in 2014, but consider it to be 2nd rate in 2019.

Having said that, I think there is a lot of truth in regard to your point, in particular in regard to things they criticized about bikes that were actually forward thinking. If you dig back (to when short chainstays were hot), you can find reviews that talk about how a 440mm chainstay length lead to sluggish performance, and the bike gets condemned for it. Now that long bikes (with long chainstays) are becoming the hot thing, all of a sudden 440mm is great, and the reviewer might even state that they wish the company had gone longer.

You see the a similar thing with head tube angles, where in an older review a bike is praised for choosing a "balanced" 67.5 degree head tube angle rather than going to an "extreme" number below that, which would have made it impossible to right on tight stuff. Now, 67.5 is "twitchy" and 66 is considered "balanced". And that is despite wheelbases getting longer (more stable), and fork rakes getting shorter (also more stable).
  • + 1
 @thekaiser: 66* is steep by today's standards. Even alot of shorter travel trail bikes have 65-66* HA's.. Some slacker!
  • + 11
 If you feel off on a ride, call it quits. A lapse in concentration is the fastest way to the emergency room and instead of missing out one ride, you'll miss out on 10 to 100 rides. It ain't worth the gains you get from one day of training. Been racing for nearly
  • + 6
 ... thirty years and smart choices take discipline.
  • + 1
 true, feeling off on a ride and pushing it led to me separating my shoulder. be safe out there
  • + 10
 RC, RC2, and World Cup was too confusing so it's been replaced with Select, Ultimate Select Plus and Ultimate Carbon. thanks. I Assume all stanchions are also 1mm smaller in diameter thus making all tools, seals and parts obsolete.
  • + 7
 Nah, it's 0.1mm so they can have 34.99mm stanchions
  • + 14
 @Lookinforit: Your math teacher must be disappointed....
  • + 0
 @Pavel-Repak: 0.01** zero is hard to find twice in a row hahaha
  • + 7
 Cheers guys.
Looks like the smart money is on the Boxxer Select, which is £400 cheaper than the Ultimate for an identical air spring and a very similar Charger damper.
And even if you later decide that you just can't live without a HSC adjuster, you can upgrade the Selects for £350 anyway.
  • + 2
 Even better is getting a 2019 year model for cheap.

I got a Yari for 250€ and I really cant complain about the performance- I really wouldnt notice the Charger damper as Im more thinking about not crashing
  • - 2
 @NotNamed: trust me you would RC stands for really crappy it makes a world of difference even to novice rider
  • + 1
 @freeridejerk888: A novice rider doesn't even know what the dials do on their fork, I doubt they would notice the difference between an RC and RC2 damper.

Best option for an experienced rider imo is buy the Yari, upgrade the damper and put in SKF seals and you have a Lyrik Ultimate, unless you are a dentist and NEED the red paint and Ultimate sticker to show off to your friends that is...
  • + 1
 turning dials and riding a better fork or different. The rc damper is trash you would notice a difference @SonofBovril:
  • + 6
 A very important aspect of torque wrenches. They are a calibrated tool. Which means dont bang them on anything, dont drop them and ONLY use them as intended i.e. a ratcheting torque wrench is not for general ratchet work. I had this engrained in me from my ski tuning days and testing bindings. I no longer loan out my torque wrenches cause most people unknowingly abuse them.
  • + 12
 And detension them after use.
  • + 6
 @nouseforaname: finding our 600ft/lbs torque wrench nearly maxed out left in the box the other morning... uuh
  • + 5
 @nouseforaname: Detension meaning turn all the way to zero?
  • + 7
 @nouseforaname: Well that would have been good to know when I got min in 2009.
  • + 4
 @chrisjk: no. Not zero. Put them to their lowest listed torque value.
  • + 2
 @nouseforaname: Although there are torque wrenches (quite expensive ones to be fair) that especially advertise that you don't have to detension them
  • + 1
 @spaceofades: Pedro's TW has you back it all the way out and lock it. Would you still go to lowest listed value, and why?
  • + 3
 I mean I suppose I could read the directions. Nah.
  • + 10
 Buy new for the warranty too...
  • + 3
 Unless you are going for Cannondale/Dorel since they wont honor their alleged warranty anyway.
  • + 1
 @ppp9911: I know a couple of people who were handled well on a Cdale warranty.
  • + 6
 American-made Tekton torque wrench is the way to go. It can be re-calibrated, unlike some of the "bicycle" wrenches, and is professional-grade for any mechanical use.

TEKTON 24320 1/4-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench (20-200 in.-lb./2.26-22.6 Nm) is $38.00 on Amazon.
  • + 6
 They are a US company but the Country of Origin is Taiwan for that product, you can find that info under 'Specs'

www.tekton.com/1-4-inch-drive-click-torque-wrench-24320

I am not speaking to the quality, as I have not used one, or held one. I have been looking for a quality torque wrench and it seems that if you want accuracy and reliability, they are either US or Europe manufactured products that cost quite a bit more. I hadn't heard of this brand before so I will dive into some reviews...thanks
  • + 5
 Tekton is an American company, but the primary country of origin for their tools is Taiwan (www.tekton.com/about-us) with only ~15% made in the USA according to their own website. I don't say this to disparage their tools (I've had good luck with them, and specifically recommend that torque wrench), but they're _mostly_ not "American-Made".

Country of origin aside, they make great tools, and I've got more than a few in my tool box.
  • + 8
 BUY USED (2-3 YEARS TOPS)
  • + 7
 Off-day guy: Hypoglycemia / clinical depression / existential angst. Choose two.
  • + 5
 Sometimes I manage all three at once!
  • + 4
 clinical depression that only amounts to an "off day", yeah that's the kind I'll have
  • + 4
 By far best value torque wrench for bikes:

www.amazon.com/Pro-Bike-Tool-Torque-Wrench/dp/B07JKJTDWC

Basically same as the Shimano PRO wrench for around half the cost (Pro Tools kit gets more bits, too)
  • + 1
 The same wrenches I first purchased that wasn't calibrated properly from the factory, and couldn't be brought into spec. The socket adapters were decent, and I still have those in use.
  • + 1
 i just bought one of those. It seems to work well so far... I hope it lasts because I like it.
  • + 2
 Avoid burnout by reading the signs. It’s tempting to train harder for the next race or with a goal in mind but it’s not worth it. Find a consistent and balanced schedule that works for you and don’t be tempted to push through sickness.

Your body is pretty good at telling you when it needs to go slower or even stop altogether but the mind can be a little more stubborn.

I remember my old teacher used to advise us all at the start of a week’s skiing that the holiday was a marathon, not a sprint, and these words always come back and remind me from time to time.
  • + 1
 I agree and I'd just add: Your body knows when the race is coming. For me it works every time, I feel sluggish and out of breath in the days just before a race. It's the body conserving everything it can. And it will deliver when needed.
  • + 2
 Any info on changing a 2016 boxxer wc solo air to debonair spring? Info on jenson and such seems to show just 19+ yrs as compatible. I switched over my pike to both debonair spring and charger 2.1 damper and love it and am looking to do the same with my boxxer.
  • + 2
 You have to change the stanchions too, as the threads are different, and they went from valve to an inside notch for pressure equalization in the air spring.
  • + 3
 For the boxxer question, they should just buy an old 2017 boxxer (any model) and buy an avalanche damper for it. You will then have the best fork on the market, IMO. MIDVALVES FTW
  • + 2
 for those of you purchasing ANY torque wrench.. clamp a socket attachment to a vice and then use weights on the arm of the wrench until you hear the click, at each torque value (or a few and plot a curve). use some math and figure out what actual torque the wrench breaks away at. good way of checking your wrench, sometimes they can be off by a few points and if something needs only 3Nm then the wrench actually takes 7 to break away you're SOL
  • + 2
 Or just get one that comes with an official calibration certificate from a certified lab
  • + 5
 Yeah SRAM, RC and RC2 is confusing but Select and Ultimate isn’t. Riiiiiight
  • + 4
 Pinkbike will ALWAYS toe the industry line with these question & answer post. ... maybe in the old days but not now.
  • + 2
 that was a pretty whack response, I'm more confused after reading the answer, and I bet I'm not the only one
  • + 1
 @kjjohnson: It is .. I was at work & got sidetracked & when I realized I didn't finish my thought it was to late to edit it ..oh well. I meant in the old days I trusted pinkbike's opinions more than now.
  • + 1
 @Darknut: to be clear, I wasn't criticizing your comment, I agree with you
  • + 6
 Lol JP4673 had a lot
  • + 5
 New bike, over a 4-5 year old bike, every time.
  • + 2
 Eh, I'd take a 2015 T275A over a number of newer bikes I can think of, but that's just me. Smile Not like i have any real world experience lol.
  • + 2
 @mtbikeaddict: I agree ... There are more than a few older bikes I would take in a minute over most of the new bikes.
  • + 0
 I don't think the Boxxer question was handled well at all. The guy was confused between the 2019 and 2020 models and you did nothing to clear it up if he should just buy a 2019 on sale or go with the newest. Also, what good does it to tell him it has the Charger RC damper vs the Charger 2.1? He clearly does not know much about Boxxer so perhaps you can give merits of each to him.
  • + 1
 Now I'm confused. You say the Boxxer 'Select' comes with the DebonAIR spring, but don't say that for the 'Ultimate'.
So you're saying the 2020 Boxxer Ultimate is coil-sprung?
  • + 1
 No, both come with debonair.
  • + 1
 Harbor freight makes a cheap digital torque wrench that gets really good online reviews. I bought one. But I still just default to my "calibrated hand."
  • + 2
 check out the topeak nano torqubar. I love mine. So easy to use.
  • - 2
 So the "new" Boxxer WC 2019 has Charger Damper 2 (RC2) which existed for less than 1 year. I bought the best fork RockShox could offer and three months later they release a new, better damper. Good job RockShox, thank you for your shit marketing!
Are you going to release Charger Damper 2.199 soon?
  • + 4
 Get used to it. Just think of all the poor saps who have 12x142mm hubs.
  • + 2
 Of course not. It'd be Charger 2.899 next. Razz
  • + 5
 It sound like you have a really nice fork.
  • + 1
 @spaceofades: or 650b wheels
  • + 2
 @spaceofades: I'm one of those poor saps, but I'm just gonna simmer and with time, turn to rich syrup
  • + 2
 Rockshox Judy and Judy butter!! Oh the hay day of the late 1990’s
  • + 1
 That Range torque set is rad. Works like a charm!
  • + 0
 Quit coffee and caffeine, and you are not goin to have these problems during a ride Wink
  • + 1
 no recommendation for parktool tw 5.2 & 6.2?
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