Trust Performance's 'Message' linkage fork made waves when it debuted last year thanks to its unique look, sky-high price, and long list of claimed performance benefits. The fact that Trust was founded by industry veterans Dave Weagle, Jason Schiers, and Hap Selig didn't hurt things either. Now, that fork is being joined by a new longer travel sibling, the Shout.
The Shout has 178mm of travel, but because its axle path isn't entirely linear (Trust call it 'contour travel') it should be able to replace 29" forks with between 160-180mm of travel, or between 160-170mm of travel on a 27.5” wheeled bike.
It's constructed with a single piece carbon chassis and steerer tube, and uses a twin-tube, thru-shaft damper that's housed in the right leg, along with two air springs, one in each leg. How much does it cost? The Shout will leave your wallet $1,975 USD lighter.
Shout Fork Details
• 178mm contour travel
• Air sprung
• Carbon chassis, aluminum pivots
• Externally adjustable rebound, low-speed compression
• Axle-to-crown: 580mm
• 250-hour service interval
• 15 x 110mm Boost spacing
• Lifetime bearing warranty
• Weight: 2170 grams (claimed)
• MSRP: $1975 USD
Just like the shorter travel Message, the Shout uses a trailing, multi-link design that allows it to maintain the same mechanical trail number throughout its travel, which is said to provide very consistent handling at the beginning, middle, and end of the stroke. The trail number may remain the same, but remember that the Shout doesn't have a 1:1 leverage ratio like a telescoping fork - it has an axle path and leverage ratio that's closer to what you'd find on a rear suspension design.
An aluminum lever allows riders to choose between three compression modes: firm, medium, and open. Both the medium and open modes are independently adjustable, which makes it possible to fine tune the feel of those settings to suit the terrain and a rider's preferences. The firm mode operates a little differently than a typical lockout – it only engages after the fork goes through 20% of its travel. That means that the initial portion of the stroke is available to take the edge off the chattery sections of trail that can feel uncomfortably harsh with a traditional lockout.
The Shout comes with three "Huck Puck" volume spacers installed in each air spring, and up to two more can be installed on each side to create additional bottom out resistance, a procedure that only requires two Allen keys. There's clearance for up to a 29 x 2.6” tire or 27.5 x 2.8”, and claimed weight for the fork is 2170 grams.
Mike Levy went over the details and backstory of the Message fork in extensive detail, and you can read about Trust Performance's origins here
. The Message's final performance report
was a bit mixed, pun intended. There were scenarios where its handling, especially in the corners, put it above its traditional telescoping peers, but it didn't deliver the most comfortable ride. For a 130mm fork that's not the end of the world, but the expectations for how the Shout should feel are going to be even higher considering the amount of travel and the terrain it's designed to handle. Ride Impressions
I only have one single lap on the Shout so far, although it was a good long one, beginning from the top of the Garbanzo Zone in the Whistler Bike Park and heading back down
to the base area nearly 4,000 vertical feet below.
The fork, which was mounted to a Yeti SB150, wasn't the absolute final production version, but its handling certainly piqued my interest, especially during high-speed bermed turns. Most of us unconsciously prepare for the front end of a full-suspension bike to dive a bit in that situation, a response developed from years of riding traditional telescoping forks. That wasn't the case with the Shout; it felt as if the handlebar was staying in the same position, but the front wheel was sucking up all of the braking bumps the wheel was rolling over. On the rougher terrain the Shout felt calm and composed, and I didn't experience any undue harshness in my hands or forearms. It was uncannily smooth, a sensation I hadn't been expecting after hearing various reports about the shorter travel Message.
A production version is set to arrive any day now – I'll be mounting that up and putting it to the test this fall in order to see how it stacks up against the other top competitors in this category.