Review: Bright Racing Shocks' F929 Next Inverted Enduro Fork

Nov 22, 2021
by Seb Stott  


Every now and then a company comes along and challenges accepted wisdom. Over the last few years, enduro forks have got stiffer and air springs have got more linear, meaning a softer beginning-stroke, more sag and a firmer mid-stroke. But Bright Racing Shocks, a boutique Italian suspension brand, think that's the wrong way to go. They have three products, designed for XC, trail and enduro; I've been testing the Enduro version, the F929 Next.

All Bright's forks are inverted - a design which is often associated with poorer torsional stiffness, but Bright claim their design has ample steering precision. Even more unusually, Bright believes you don't want a fork to be soft off the top. They say the faster you ride, the less static sag you need, and as their forks are aimed at racers and passionate riders, they think you don't need much sag at all.
Bright Racing Shocks F929 Next Details

• Intended use: Enduro, trail, eMTB
• Travel: 150mm, but designed to match a 170mm conventional fork thanks to minimal sag
• Axle-to-crown: 562mm (similar to 150mm fork)
• 35mm stanchions, 49mm carbon fiber upper legs
• Adjustments: Low-speed compression/lockout, low-speed rebound, air pressure
• Weight: 2,287-grams (actual)
• MSRP: 1,930 Euros
Bright Racing Shocks

As a result, the Next is said to be equivalent to a regular fork with about 20mm more travel. The fork I have on test has 150mm of actual travel, but because it barely sags under rider weight, it has a similar ride height at sag as a conventional 170mm fork, which is what it's designed to compete against.

While other brands are adding more features and dials, Bright keeps the adjustability to a minimum. Only the air pressure, low-speed compression and low-speed rebound are adjustable by the user. Instead, they'll custom-tune the damper for each customer.




Chassis

The carbon fiber upper tubes have a 49mm diameter at their widest part and are fixed into a CNC-machined solid aluminum crown. Like most inverted forks, the legs would be free to move up and down and twist independently if it wasn't for the 15mm thru-axle that, along with the hub, ties the two legs together. The dropouts are torque-cap compatible and Bright strongly recommends using a Torque Cap hub to increase the stiffness. The thru-axle tightens up with a 6mm Allen key plus a 4mm pinch bolt on the leg opposite the thread. It's not a floating axle like Fox and Ohlins use, so the pinch bolt is just there to hold the axle to the leg on the non-threaded side.

At 2,287 grams (5.04 lbs), it's a shade lighter than a RockShox Zeb, but heavier than a Lyrik or Fox 36.

The brake mount is replaceable - in this case, it's a 200mm post-mount. The stanchions measure 35mm in diameter, which makes it possible to use RockShox wiper seals for at-home servicing. Bolt-on plastic stanchion guards are designed to protect the stanchions from impacts and debris.



I've tested three dampers in the fork. The pressurised air is compressed below the black, blue or white seal head.

Internals

The spring and damper are housed in the left leg, while the right leg is essentially passive, except for the small spring force due to the air in the leg being compressed. Theoretically, having the damper and spring on the same side could create a more uneven force on the chassis during the compression stroke, because all of the force resisting compression is coming from one side of the axle. But in most modern forks where the damper is in one leg and the spring in the other the forces from the damper and spring are rarely equal anyway.

The damper is a fairly conventional single-tube cartridge design, with a spring-backed IFP compensating for displaced oil. There's a low-speed compression adjuster at the top and a low-speed rebound dial at the bottom. The compression dial acts as a lockout when closed off - making it similar in use to Fox's Grip damper compression dial. Neither adjuster has detents (clicks) but instead has a continuous motion. The compression adjuster has a range of about one and a quarter turns from fully closed to open, while the rebound adjuster has about 3.75 turns. If it was a whole number of turns or the settings were delineated by distinct clicks it would be easier to keep track of settings.

The air spring is really what makes the F929 so distinctive to ride. The air valve located at the bottom of the fork pressurises the air in the left-hand stanchion, which is compressed by a piston at the base of the damper. There's no negative air spring, but there is a small coil negative spring housed inside the damper to help push the fork away from top-out and into its travel. Coil negative springs are used in other forks from X-Fusion and DVO, but the negative spring in the F929 is much weaker and shorter, meaning the fork stays close to top-out at sag.

There are no volume spacers to adjust the ramp-up, but the fork is very progressive towards the end of the travel.




Setup

The lack of any real negative spring means lower pressures are needed for it to engage its travel. For my 85Kg weight, I'd run about 100psi in a RockShox Lyrik (which also has 35mm stanchions), but with the F929 I settled on 52psi. This lower pressure is mostly down to the lack of a negative spring, which acts against the positive spring throughout the travel in most forks, but also the low volume and high compression ratio of the positive air chamber, which makes it quite progressive. I tried everything from 48 to 65 psi, but I found that with more than 55 psi the fork was too harsh when it first made contact with the ground, caused it to top-out hard like a slide-hammer even with the rebound very slow, and made it too firm at the end of the travel, making it almost impossible to use more than 120 mm of travel.

Bright sent me three dampers to test during the test period.

With the first damper, I tried all the rebound settings from fully open to fully closed but settled at around halfway. Slow rebound caused it to bog down into its travel, while running it any faster caused the fork over-extend and top-out. The rebound setting was always a compromise between these two factors, which occur simultaneously throughout most of the range. Bright suggested sending me a second damper with a firmer high-speed compression tune to hold the fork up when riding hard, thereby allowing for lower air pressure to be used.

Swapping the damper/spring unit is a straightforward task requiring no more than a plastic tool supplied with the fork and a spanner or socket. You'll also need some suspension grease and a little Bright or Fox Gold oil, but the whole process can be done in less than ten minutes.

The second damper was too slow when fully open on rebound, so Bright quickly sent a third damper with the firmer HSC tune but lighter rebound. This time, my ideal setup was somewhere near the middle of both adjusters, with the air pressure around 50-52 psi.

Even with this lowest pressure (50 psi), I measured just 20mm of sag, whereas with a 170mm conventional fork you might run as much as 40 mm (22.5%) sag, so in theory, the difference in sag roughly cancels out the difference in axle-to-crown length when run at this pressure, meaning the ride height at sag is similar.

It's worth noting that small changes in air pressure make a big difference to sag. If you doubled the air pressure in a self-equalising Fox or RockShox fork you'd get (roughly) half as much sag, but with the F929, increasing the pressure above 60 psi almost eliminates the sag entirely. This makes it feel like a conventional fork that's been inflated but hasn't yet been equalised, so there's no air in the negative spring. This is because the F929's coil negative spring doesn't change proportionately with air pressure.

It's also worth mentioning on the setup front that installing a wheel in this fork is a little fiddly. The two legs can twist and slide independently of one another, making it hard to line everything up, and the Allen key for the thru-axle enters at the threaded end, making it tricky to keep enough force on the axle for it to locate the threads while simultaneously turning it. Another disadvantage of USD forks is that most mudguards are pretty ineffective when placed under the crown as opposed to under the arch. Also, the valve located at the base of the fork sprays oil when releasing air or removing a shock pump; this could contaminate the brake.

On the other hand, the clip-in cable guide is genius and the removable 200mm brake mount is an elegant solution.



With pressures in the high fifties, sag was minimal.

Performance

While most forks from Fox, RockShox and Ohlins feel pretty similar on the trail, Bright is definitely offering something different.

With pressures north of 55 psi, the fork had too little sag and felt overly springy and keen to top-out when riding technical terrain and lifting the front wheel over obstacles. Running the spring down to 50 psi, the sag increased to around 20 mm (13%), which was just enough to keep the front wheel in touch with the ground most of the time and avoid the worst of the top-out.

But with the spring pressure in the low fifties, the fork is very soft in the middle third of its travel. This can make it feel a little unpredictable on steps or holes, as the fork moves through that part of the travel very readily. The ramp-up is there towards the end of the stroke, which means the chassis movement doesn't get too extreme, although the downside is that I rarely dipped into the last 20 mm of travel even with the lowest pressures I tried. With the firmer compression tune, it's usually manageable even on steep terrain. Although I resorted to running the compression almost locked o-ut on particularly technical features, and otherwise the lack of spring support is unnerving when things get out of shape.

Even with the lowest air pressure and the rebound set much slower than I'd usually run it, it would still top-out when bunnyhopping or lifting the front wheel, which makes it a little harder to judge the timing and amplitude when initiating a manual. On really fast and rough trails the top-out added a little harshness when it happened frequently. Setting the rebound even slower helped reduce this problem but the fork started packing down (exacerbating the lack of support) before the top-out issue diminished.

But with suspension, everything has pros and cons. The upside of Bright's unusual "stiff then soft then stiff" spring curve is that the soft middle part of the travel makes it really, really comfortable when plowing through rough terrain with the fork consistently loaded. When riding headlong into a kerb (or similar trail feature), the fork moves so readily into its travel that it just soaks it up. Long, rocky, but uncomplicated tracks which usually result in hand buzz were noticeably less jarring as the fork soaked up the bumps, even with the damping pretty firm. This is pretty much the reverse of what I found with the Vorsprung Secus, which offered exceptional support, predictability and traction, but was also firmer in the middle of the travel, leading to more feedback on single, simple impacts. Having said that, the need to use such firm damping on compression and rebound to mitigate the diving and top-out led to a lot of buzz on high-frequency, small bump terrain like weathered machine-built trails.

I'm not sure if the inverted design, with the bushings closer to the axle and with lubricant held against the wiper seals by gravity, helps improve sensitivity - the spring curve is what dominates the fork's character. Similarly, even with a Torque Cap hub, the steering occasionally felt a little vague and delayed, but this could be down to that mid-travel wallow leading to a disconnected sensation. When I used a normal hub, the front wheel definitely felt less responsive and predictable in high-load situations like ruts and pivot turns. I don't have a stiffness testing jig, but based on the "wiggle the bars with the wheel against a wall" test, the Bright fork feels significantly less torsionally stiff than a Fox 36, even with the Torque Cap hub, but on the trail, this was rarely an issue.

I did a day of back-to-back testing comparing the Bright to a 2021 Fox 36 Factory set to 170mm travel on a classic South Wales enduro track with a mix of terrain. On the one hand, the Fox fork couldn't gobble up the mid-sized chatter like the more softly-sprung but firmly-damped Bright fork, making it feel a little more firm and springy when dealing with individual, square-edged hits. But on the other hand, the 36 was much easier to ride in the more complicated situations; the extra sag kept the front wheel pressed into the ground on matted roots and the more linear spring feel offered more to push against under braking or when slapping into catch berms. I also felt more able to nail tight, high-load turns with the Fox fork, though whether that's down to stiffness or support I can't say. Most of all, the way the regular fork gently and predictably eases into its travel made it feel much more forgiving and predictable on choppy terrain.



Bright Racing Shock's Response
bigquotesThanks a lot for this feedback.

Honestly, I made some adjustments in the cartridge in these last three months and this is why you tried so many different dampers, but the last is the new 2022 base solution. My concern was to give you the maximum support.

The big problem of the upside-down forks in MTB was the precision and stiffness of the chassis, and I'm relaxed now that this is ok.

My idea is to modify the spring in the negative end and mount a pack of microcellular elastomers, precharged, with the coil.

This modification makes the start of the travel more reactive because we will have a negative pack (coil+elastomers) compressed at full fork extension, that will extend when the fork compresses at the start of its travel. This solution was tested in some first versions of the fork (years 2014-2015-2016) then deleted in order to have a more simple package.

This will be a solution for 2022 version of the Enduro fork.
Pablo Fiorilli, founder



Pros

+ Superb sensitivity and comfort when the fork is loaded and plowing.
+ Unique and boutique.
Cons

- Lack of sag but soft mid-stroke creates an unpredictable feel.
- Regular top-out even with soft settings and slow rebound.
- Expensive




Pinkbike's Take
bigquotesWhat sets this fork apart isn't the inverted design, but the unconventional spring curve. It's a 150mm fork which runs barely any sag, giving it a similar ride height and range of positive travel to a 170mm fork with around 20% sag. The problem is that running it that close to full-extension creates problems with top-out and off-the-top harshness, plus the drop in stiffness from the beginning to the middle of the travel creates an unpredictable feel. For sure it has upsides - it gobbles up bumps on uncomplicated trails - but the top-out and chassis movement make it hard to get on with.

On the other hand, while it's hard to make out due to the unusual spring curve, the chassis and damping performance show promise. I'd be intrigued to try it with a more conventional spring in future.
Seb Stott



237 Comments

  • 185 2
 My wallet is upside down too,and nothing's coming out.
  • 8 1
 turn that frown upside down
  • 8 0
 My wallet is frequently topped out and empty too.
  • 16 0
 @jakewashere: with a slow rebound
  • 4 0
 @Mac1987: I’ll never financially recover from this
  • 3 1
 Barely 300 eur more than the 38
  • 113 1
 It obviously needs some work, but I'm glad they're trying. It's a really cool looking fork.
  • 30 0
 Agreed, it is very cool. From this review though it feels more like a "project" than a "product" at this point.
  • 22 115
flag Lorrrr (Nov 22, 2021 at 10:09) (Below Threshold)
 @Patrick9-32:
It’s not a project, the only wrongdoing that a that SEB went against the manufacturer baseline setting.
He decided to go with 10mm more travel and to compensate that use 3 times the recommended sag.
Basically he used a fork without sustain.
After that he wrote a page of useless comments that only underline is incompetence.
  • 34 5
 @Lorrrr: Wow who pissed in your coffee this morning?
  • 160 8
 @Lorrrr, it's fine that you don't agree with Seb's findings, but calling him incompetent is uncalled for and completely untrue. Seb's spent a lot of time trying to make this fork feel as good as possible, even trying three different dampers in the process. He spent time experimenting with the recommended settings and with other ones as part of the test process - that's how evaluating a product works.
  • 15 3
 @Lorrrr why are you defending 2000 euro fork that has worse performance than 1500 euro fork
  • 10 1
 @Lorrrr: read the review man. I trust them more than you
  • 21 29
flag BenOnTrek (Nov 22, 2021 at 11:04) (Below Threshold)
 @mikekazimer: come on, he tried the fork intended to be SAG free with still in mind a SAG value as he is used to. That's the exact opposite of what the manufacture states. Rubbish review.
  • 5 0
 @iliveonnitro I wonder how good the chassis itself is- put a normal coil spring in it (and maybe even an avalanche damper or something) and then give it another go.
  • 22 46
flag HiddenHeroes (Nov 22, 2021 at 11:20) (Below Threshold)
 @mikekazimer:
I just paste this, because was deleted
SEB incompetency is the only thing that emerge from this useless article.
He went against the owner recommendation and set up a product that doesn’t know and doesn’t understand using is own thinking process.
He haven’t spent any words praising the fact that finally an USD fork doesn’t have stiffness problems.
He didn’t talk about the adaptive rebound system that avoid the top ups.
He used 10mm too much travel and he sag the fork against manufacturer direct and clear reccomandation.
You should stop writing useless and biased review.
Send the fork to Squamish and let the pros do their job.
  • 41 2
 @HiddenHeroes: On days like this, I just stop working and go for a walk. No headphones, no podcast, no music. Just get some fresh air and let your mind wander. Let whatever is trying to ruin your day just take a back seat to some meditation while your feet move. It only takes about 15 min, and then you'll feel a lot better.
  • 37 6
 As soon as I read that the air spring had no real negative other than a small coil spring, I immediately assumed that the fork would have 0 mid stroke support and basically ride like a bag of shit. It blows my mind that someone would make a product with such obvious design weaknesses. Is it too much to ask that, when designing a suspension product, designers actually understand how suspension works?

And to all those claiming Seb Stott is incompetenet cos he can't get the fork to feel nice... You need to sit down and take a look at how spring curves actually work, come back and read the review again, and consider that it might be the designer who is incompetent, and the reviewer is simply pointing that out much more kindly and thoughtfully than I would have...
  • 4 2
 @hamncheez: He seems to be Brights knight in shining armor,so i doubt he has any chill right now.
  • 2 1
 Absolutely! I love that this exists. I definitely think there is some interesting innovative design happening here and hopefully something great will be developed and start to trickle down to more affordable price points.
  • 13 38
flag Lorrrr (Nov 22, 2021 at 12:26) (Below Threshold)
 @CaMKii: honestly a biased last minute review that piss on years of hard work done by a forward thinking company that help progress our loved bike world is worst than piss on a coffee.
At the end of the day only thing I was expecting was to see a fair review starting by a rider following manifacturer specs.
We got a know it all guy that decided that is thinking is better than the owner ow bright itself.
  • 7 0
 @gabriel-mission9: Seb knows what he's doing. Still everyone has their own preferences and perhaps having a few other riders try it would have been interesting. Maybe a rider who like their setup a bit different to most would have really liked it? I doubt it, tho. Lots of red flags in the design. And even if there was the oddball rider who loves it, still doesn't mean it's good. A fork should be adjustable enough to suit a wide range of rider sizes and setup preferences.
  • 13 15
 @mikekazimer: Saying someone spent a lot of time trying to do something doesn't necessarily speak to the efficacy of their efforts.
  • 13 1
 @mikekazimer: everyone on here talking about suspension and the review, while not even mentioning the 35mm stanchions! Amateurs, you ought to know anything less than 38mm is unrideable, that be downside up, upside down, inside out and outside in.
  • 16 3
 Cool product, the guy obviously worked hard to build it. And Seb did his best to make it work and to provide an accurate review. Some people really take stuff seriously in the comments...
  • 5 2
 Fork just needs the rulezman touch
  • 28 17
 @gabriel-mission9:
first of all in your place I would try to think that doing a fork and doing it at this stage is not a two month job. if you look closely you realize (even you) that the parts are not prototypes.
I do not know how
you earn your living but I (the Bright rs designer) have been designing and developing racing suspensions for 30 years (but also parts of aircraft and space satellites as an "design expert") and I have designed things on the DH suspensions (already in the 90s with Fimoco Engineering) that you today you drive like a happy child and take for granted.

reflect on how someone like me comes to determine the engineering of a suspension (according to your great knowledge) to put his face on an innovative suspension concept.

the Bright system works with some unique specialties but MUST BE TRYED/RIDED in the correct set up. Seb for sure wants to make a good test... but never hinted how he was using the fork and only three days ago he clearly said what was wrong with him.
remember that my job is to male a suspension go fast(!)... if I have feedbacks clear a d expert, I have the cure.
this on the system must work at 0-5 mm STATIC sag and then everything is done by the SL valve that manages the DYNAMICAL SAG.
These concepts are not entirely new but aimed at high performance and this system in particular is created by
us and sold for years.
Bright only makes race prepared forks. not for the bike path.
Our first job is design and development.

Please, sit down and listen a few times. not be a professor where you do not know.

moreover the BRIGHT is the first fork in the history of MTB to have a precision and torsional stiffness so evident and clean, precise, robust, to overturn the concept of upsidedown in MountainBike.
BUT I DO BOT SEEN THIS IN THE ARTICLE.....
I not pay for the article. never.
  • 11 10
 @kcy4130: I’m sure Seb tried to made a good job.
I’m sure.
I just say that innovation (when it comes out by strong skill and experience) have to be seen without prejudice and tried with a continuous contact with the designer. in order to be sure to have a correct test.

in many years (many) never there was a only rider who say that this system is not fantastic. this is a datum.
  • 10 16
flag cashew (Nov 22, 2021 at 23:49) (Below Threshold)
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: do yourself a favor and stop writing bs.
  • 11 4
 @cashew: please, tell me why
  • 10 6
 @Patrick9-32:
It is a racing department fork.
BRIGHT make just design and development. And sell race replica of the forks. Limited edition and in continuous development. Performances are the top but is needed to use the fork according to the right set up. Is important ask and adjust. Simple
  • 16 1
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks:

Please don’t be discouraged by some of these discouraging comments. People are very resistant to change and a lot of the time innovators struggle when introducing new products to market. Keep innovating, and don’t listen to the resistance. If you know your product is superior for the task it’s been designed for, then others will see this eventually.
  • 13 4
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: keep up with the good work and keep in mind that 90% of the folks here just barely use 10% of their brand new super ZEEB or F38 because they spend too much time arguing on website's forums. They will never be your customer, and may be is this good to stay away from the mass. I'll be pushing in your direction and after the first Next, one more to come and 2 Skunk are in the schedule. Have pleasant and peaceful day Pablo
  • 4 1
 @Lorrrr: for a guy that praises a company so much why is it you don't actually own their fork? You remind me of the pinion minions that praise the gearbox but have never ridden them and don't own one lol.
  • 1 0
 @Noeserd: ask Fo' it
  • 8 4
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: this is a rabitt hole you don't want to go down. 95% of the the "technical" conversations on this forum could be debunked by anyone with a 1st year level physics class under their belt. At times even the PB staff writers are just repeating marketing lines that severely lack technical merit. this then gets repeated over and over by a lot of commenters. Also when it comes to the comment section high school humor governs actual engineering knowledge. glad to see inverted forks are starting to enter the MTB world. keep at it!
  • 3 1
 @st49: time is gentleman
  • 4 1
 @blanc: thanks…
In 90’s with Fimoco was the same… but now many my innovations in dh forks have become normals…
Our customers and riders are all open mind people
  • 7 3
 @gabriel-mission9: I'm with you dude. I thought we left zero sag & cheesy negative springs in the early 2000s. These people shitting on Seb need to open up their fork and remove their negative seal o-rings, ride some trails, and then see if these mfr recommended settings make any sense after that.

There's nothing inherently wrong with a coil negative but I can't wrap my head around how anyone who invested enough thought to actually make a fork would design the air spring this way. Never heard of a bike, moto, car, or truck designed to roll around a few mm from topout. It makes no sense.
  • 6 1
 @mikekazimer: do you accept a guy from Bright racing Shocks come in UK this week and adjust the set up to the fork of Seb?
  • 8 5
 @bkm303: It makes no sense at all. The guy is here angrily trying to tell me i don't know what I'm talking about despite freely admitting he doesn't actually know what I do for a living (which I find quite amusing in this instance...) yet he is the one who has released a fork with the most basic and obvious design flaws. If the guy wants to explain the thinking behind his design I'm all ears. Should be good for a laugh if nothing else. Instead though he just announces that his fork is the best and backs that up with absolutely nothing, Underneath a review which quite politely states that his fork is far from the best, and actually not very good at all.
I mean, anyone with the most basic suspension design insight could have told you this fork would perform poorly just from looking at the specs. Sebs long and detailed review really hammers it home. If I was the guy who designed the thing I'd be embarrassed, not mouthing off in the comments section making things worse...

Ps, there is an inherant issue with coil negatives. This being that ideally you would want to match the springrate of the coil to the pressure in the positive. Of course though, coil negative springs generally only come in "on size fits all". Imagine the issues you would run into if you tried to sell a coil sprung fork with only one springrate. Air forks with coil negatives have similar problems. Thats essentially why no one except DVO uses them any more. (DVO being a prime example of "how not to make good suspension"). You can improve on these issues somewhat by running a very long coil negative, which gives you a larger window of pressures useable before the spring gets overwhelmed. However this Bright fork has gone completely the other way and only runs a very small one. It's literally like they are purposely making the fork as bad as possible....
  • 11 3
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: Don't fall into the trap of responding to comments on here. There's no such thing as winning an argument on the internet, and you are not coming off in a good light. Take the high road, my man.
  • 1 3
 @gabriel-mission9: no negative air chamber = no mid stroke support?
I can't quite understand your thought process on this.
  • 1 1
 @Noeserd: he wouldn't touch this one...
  • 2 0
 @gabriel-mission9: I hear you on your theory on coil negative springs, but I'm not sure I'm with you on totally writing off DVO as a fork. I've ridden a Diamond and an Onyx at various points, and I quite liked both of them. Most reviews are generally positive. Most owners seem to be generally happy. So, would appreciate if you would expand on this.
  • 1 0
 @dirktanzarian: dvo has adjustable negative coil that sets the forks apart, static ones are just cant deliver the range for all the rider weights. I had a x fusion metric and it had a static negative spring too and it became extremely harsh after a certain psi
  • 1 1
 @dirktanzarian: fox 40 used one too. No one complains about that fork
  • 1 1
 Fox have moved away from coil negatives on all their forks. They used them for a couple of years (while air springs were still arguably in their infancy and performed no where near as well as they do now) but have moved on to better systems now. Ie self balancing negative air chambers
  • 55 7
 Translation: we tried to band aid spring technology from the early 2000s by just running lower pressure. The fork blew through its travel and topped out. ****shocker***
  • 24 3
 This is just a teaser, review of the new refined version coming up next month, just behind the paywall. "We have run this upside-down fork again an you will not believe what happened!".
  • 4 0
 @lkubica: i've been busy in the recent years and not around much but things have become quite shitty everywhere?
  • 5 0
 "Conclusion: It's even more unique and boutique than before."

That will totally get all the washed up mountain bike editors to buy one.
  • 7 0
 This article was just a series of one red flag after another! The self equalizing negative air chamber is great. I wonder why they didn't use it like most fork makers do. Is it patented or something? And 15mm? wtf?
  • 6 3
 @kcy4130: Self equalizing air chambers have their own issues, and I suspect they are harder to manufacture because of tolerances.

After riding DVO, I think that coil negative springs CAN perform better and are more reliable. As with most things, being well engineered and executed is more important than the type of technology being used.
  • 6 1
 @hamncheez: More reliable, maybe; but it's not exactly a commonly heard refrain that people's self-equalizing forks and shocks are broken due to some equalizing issue. Sure, it might cause a stuck down shock once in a while when a port gets clogged by too much or the wrong grease, but it's really not an issue to be concerned about.

But coil negs are way less flexible. A light rider loses some overall and (more importantly) loses a bunch of negative travel since their air pressure can't compress the coil neg as much, and a heavier rider gets harsh top-outs and a firm off-the-top feel since their air pressure is smashing the coil neg hard.

Air neg can also be a great way to tune progressivity. With a tiny air neg, the pressure differential between pos and neg rises rapidly, adding some progresson to the overall spring rate. With a big air neg, that pressure differential rises more slowly, giving a more linear overall rate. This is the real magic of RockShox's MegNeg: not just the size of the air neg, but the tunability of _both_ sides.
  • 6 0
 @justinfoil: nailed it.
  • 2 0
 @baca262:

In short: Yes.
  • 5 2
 @justinfoil: My monarch plus debonair after a month of riding would get "stuck" down in its travel because oil/grit would clog the self-equalizing port. Even though the rest of the shock was still ok, the thing would have to be taken apart and serviced. This also happened to probably every single first gen turbo levo that had a rockshox rear. Mine was a first gen enduro 29er.

That being said, the bolt-on shock yoke design by specialized was terrible and nuked many shocks, but the RS from that time was particularly bad.

IDK if I've ever seen it happen to a fork.

The DVO forks have a swappable negative coil, with preload adjustment, as does the Fox 40 (the DVO actually has two negative coils for two-stage progression).

After riding DVO back to back with Fox and Rockshox, I think the negative coil feels smoother, with a better compression curve from DVO. This could be from DVO having a better, more slippery chassis, but I doubt it. DVO forks are weak in other areas, and I'm not convinced that as an entire package they are better than the best from Fox or RS, but they are smoother.
  • 9 10
 @kcy4130:

in my work every step means effort.
Because creating innovation is always fun in the study and design but tiring when new solutions collide with old concepts; tired but well rooted in laziness.

Try to accept, for a moment, that the design is the result of a long work, development and design…
Try to think how you can do with a fork which give you stability and directionality…. If used in the correct set up….
  • 7 5
 @hamncheez:
you are absolutely right even though Bright produces with extremely precise tolerances.
But the question here is not the negative spring because this is long enough.
the excursion concept we have created is fluid but must be used with the right settings and must not give static sag.
Dynamic sag is the important thing and how
then the valves work at high speeds
  • 10 3
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: I am guessing English is your second language but I can't quiet follow this. Feel free to post in Italian and I'll run it through a translator?

Here is $0.02 from someone who used to be a professional product tester and has a very strong understanding of spring technology; having ridden everything that is on the market today (and really, over the last 2+ decades)

1) Negative springs are very important to making an air spring work properly.

2) You can use a negative coil spring for simplicity (though its arguably not more simple). However, there are big drawbacks to this style of system. In fact, no modern main stream company is using a negative coil spring in an air spring setup. The reason is simple - There is a force mismatch at all but 'one" setting. You either have too much negative spring or too little.

3) One easy option is to build a user fillable negative air spring. This doesn't require any equalizing of chambers. You could even make this chamber volume adjustable which would be killer.

4) All that said, if I were focusing on damping & chassis I'd say "screw air springs" and throw a coil in there. People LOVE coil springs. Yes, they are heavier but you mitigate a bit design headache. Build in a HBO into the damper, put a solid coil spring package together and you have a cool niche.

Again, just my $0.02 - but don't let your weakness ruin an otherwise (possibly) cool product...
  • 14 3
 @JeffreyJim:
Thanks!!!!
Grazie!

La molla negativa che ho adottato all’interno della cartuccia non è così corta come sembra dall’articolo. Anzi.. si tratta di una molla di 65 mm abbinata già ad un tampone di poliuretano che allunga tutto il pacco. Per il 2022 questo diventerà ancora più lungo.
La questione è diversa.
Il motivo per cui non si equalizzano le due molle (aria sotto e elicoidale sopra) è perché tutto il sistema ACAD è progettato e sviluppato perché ci sia equalizzazione solo per i primi 15 mm..questi 15
Mm aiutano lo spunto che poi viene ripreso dalle valvole che aprono il flusso idraulico e permettono l’avvio della fare di compressione.
C’è altro però…
Il mio sistema ACAD montato sulle BRIGHT non è un puro aria.
La bellezza sta proprio nel fatto di essere un sistema misto aria e molla.
La molla di carico è alloggiata dentro la cartuccia idraulica ed è lei a mantenere alto il galleggiamento della forcella.
È sbagliato pensare che si tratti di una pura forcella ad aria.
La camera di aria contribuisce per il 60% del carico mentre la molla di compressione lavora a ben 160 kg di carico alla massima escursione.

Ora….
Questa forcella nasce e si sviluppa per avere una guida in cui il rider ha la massima padronanza della bicicletta.
È voluto e normale che non ci sia sag statico. Anzi possiamo dire che il sag statico finisce subito (qualche mm) e poi c’è una fase resistente.
Ma quella fase resistente assorbe perfettamente grazie al lavoro molto preciso delle valvole idrauliche.
Hai la sensazione di avere una forcella quasi rigida ma immensamente maneggevole e che al tempo stesso assorbe qualsiasi cosa.

Il misunderstanding:
Il problema viene se tu vuoi avere il sag da questo sistema.
In quel caso sgonfi la forcella gino ad avere un sistema floscio, morto.. senza reattività.
Questo è stato il problema nel
Test. Cioè voler far funzionare la forcella non come se stessa ma come un’altra comune.

SAG statico
Il sag statico riesce (dice una spiegazione monca) a compensare la depressione del terreno. Ma questo è un concetto che non si applica bene al fuoristrada perché le velocità di scorrimento di una forcella vanno da0,8 a 1,5-2 metri al secondo per chi va veramente veloce.
Il sag statico (che è di fatto una zona poco reattiva… direi morta) non riuscirebbe mai a compensare le depressioni a quelle velocità.
Per questo solo chi va piano riesce a sfruttare la trazione del sag statico.

Il 90% dei riders amatori va piano.
Posso mostrare dei video in cui i nostri rider ufficiali volano letteralmente sulle pietre in Liguria…
Se vai forte hai una guida completamente diversa dalla guida di un amatore che trae beneficio dal sag.
Questa è sempre fisica ma è ponderata su un piano diverso.
Bisogna ricordare che nel fuoristrada le variabili e le discontinuità sono tantissime e mai uguali. Preferite una forcella che copia e vi accompagna ma con una certa pesantezza e rilassatezza oppure una forcella reattiva, maneggevole, che assorbe bene le discontinuità e vi permette di scegliere la vostra traiettoria???

VOGLIAMO PARLARE DEL FATTO CHE LA BRIGHT per la prima volta offre una forcella rovesciata che NON HA PROBLEMI DI TORSIONE???
Sapete quante aziende hanno provato a fare la rovesciata da mtb???
I problemi erano ben altri erano quelli della TORSIONE…
Ma qui non si mensiona questo grande goal ingegneristico.

ALTRO SULLA CARTUCCIA:
La BRIGHT RS nasce come reparto corse e come studio di ingegneria dele sospensioni. Cioè produciamo forcelle completamente tunabili.
Possiamo fare qualunque curva di progressione e questo è il bello del tailoring.

Abbiamo avuto feedbacks incompleti e discordanti che non ci hanno mai aiutato a preparare una cartuccia per questo test!
Perché ogni volta si cercava di far funzionare a gasolio un’auto che nasce a benzina….
Può non piacere lo stile di guida delle mie sospensioni ma NON SI PUÒ AFFERMARE CHE SIANO PREPARATE A CASO! Progetto sospensioni sportive dal 1989 e il mio 70% è stato sempre la
Mtb. L’articolo ha completamente dimenticato tutto il resto oltre la curva di progressione!!
Parliamo delle speciali guide?
Parliamo degli steli rettificati e poi lappati a mano?
Del rivestimento microporoso autolubrificante?
Parliamo del fatto che ogni forcella è rifinita e incollata a mano come in un reparto corse Custom?
Parliamo dei foderi in fibra di carbonio che danno reattività e resistenza oggi imparagonabili a niente sul mercato?
Ci sono 1000 cose
Dietro l’ingegneria di BRIGHT RS ma non è stata nemmeno mensionata.
Tutti i nostri clienti sorridono quando escono in bici. Seguiamo ognuno di loro anche per gli upgrades.
Una forcella BRIGHT viene tenuta in servizio mediamente per 4 anni con gli aggiornamenti sempre disponibili.
Non è una forcella che costa molto. Costa poco! È un po’ come un ammortizzatore Push, un pezzo di ingegneria e di meccanica raffinata nella tecnologia e evoluta continuamente.

Spero di aver almeno dato un piccolo spunto di riflessione…

Come diceva H.Ford “se avessi chiesto alle persone cosa volessero mi avrebbero chiesto carrozze con più cavalli”
  • 1 1
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks:
Pablo sei un grande !!!
  • 3 0
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: I translated and read your reply, very detailed! Thanks for putting all that time in. I have a sort of long question for you.

I have a pretty similar inverted fork. It's an X-Fusion Revel. Like yours, it has a hybrid coil-air setup, with a dual-stage negative coil spring. Your cartridge has a compressive coil spring, and the X-fusion does not, but overall they seem like they have a similar design philosophy.

I have firsthand felt the argument you're making to be true, where running less sag makes it more responsive and somewhat better for fast, hard riding. Compared to this fork, others with more sag feel more comfort-oriented and give less support when charging into fast, rough terrain. This is how the fork was intended to be used. However, when using the recommended settings the inevitable harsh top-out to be uncomfortable and jarring, detracting from my confidence and making the fork feel like it couldn't handle what I was doing. It's hard to trust a fork that slams back out to full travel after every little hit, to the point where the vibrations make screws loosen up.

Because it seems like the topout was the key thing that this reviewer tried to avoid, and I suspect most consumers would do the same, how do you plan to mitigate it? I was able to fix my fork with a stiffer negative coil, but it only works for my settings. Does the elastomer design you mentioned fix this for a wider range of settings?
  • 1 0
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: thanks for the reply! I want to reply, but I feel doing so privately is best. Jeff AT SilberTurbos DOT com. Email me, would love to chat further.
  • 58 21
 Cool, but where's levy? Behind the paywall perhaps?
#startpurplebike
  • 4 8
flag ididntknowhatomakemyusername (Nov 22, 2021 at 10:15) (Below Threshold)
 Why are they being downvoted??
  • 44 8
 Yikes, sounds pretty awful.
  • 5 1
 Same
  • 19 10
 Well if you're making an inverted fork and insist on using a 15mm but recommending that people use Torque Caps for additional stiffness, I'm going to distrust everything you say after that.

Use a 20mm axle (or better like Specialized or Foes) AND Torque Caps and tell me about your 'ample' fork stiffness. If you can't get that most vital bit of braindead simple engineering decision making done right, I'm not going to consider your product as anything but essentially flawed.
  • 23 3
 @nouseforaname: Pablo probably chose 15mm because it absolutely dominates the market- using 20mm would mean many people a) would have to buy new front wheels instead of using old ones, and b) might be afraid of finding spares down the road. Those are legitimate concerns, especially when you're shelling out over 2000 bucks for a fork. I know, this is an unusual boutique fork and so anyone considering buying this is going to be open-minded, but at the end of the day, they have to choose what's viable on the market. Blame the industry, not Pablo.
  • 8 11
 @Insectoid: No. He's responsible for his choices. If you're buying into the hype of a boutique product, it makes no sense to make it 'just the same as everything else' in an area that is perceived as the (second?) most common area of concern for USD forks.
  • 14 1
 @Insectoid: When you're shelling out 2000 bucks for a fork, you want to know it uses the absolute best parts and design and doesn't make compromises just to match what is common on very different designs.

Should Porsche not put massively wide tires on the back of a 911 Turbo just because super wide tires aren't commonly found on average vehicles and might not be stocked at your average small town tire shop? Hell no, because it would remove vast amounts of performance potential.
  • 3 1
 @justinfoil, @nouseforaname: Interesting how your replies, which express the same idea, got totally different responses. OK, it's the maker's choice to use 15mm over the clearly superior (esp. for this application) 20mm, but in his position, someone who owns a business and has to cover costs and then make a profit, would you really go for the unpopular but better standard? That's all I'm saying.
  • 2 1
 @justinfoil: My original post also ignores the big picture, which is that this is a fork that costs north of twice as much as the competition while lacking in important ways in performance. As a value proposition, it's awful, but all this guy needs to do to be in the black for a month is probably to sell two, or maybe even just one, fork.
Kind of similar to that German guy some months back who limited the production run of his overweight boutique steel FS frames to 12 per year and set the price for each one at six thousand euros. If he sold even three of them, he could probably cover his living expenses and focus on other pursuits. Smart business practice but crummy value.
  • 8 4
 @Insectoid:
Many thanks to see deeply.
This progression curve is fantastic when is used in the correct set up.
  • 2 1
 @Insectoid: A 15mm axle on this fork is wrong any way you slice it, it's not defendable. It undermines the credibility of the guy making it. And no, no one will need new wheels for it, just a front hub. Which, by the way, this fork should come with just like e.g. a Lefty. A 2 grand boutique inverted fork should be delivered with a dedicated thick-axled hub. If 2k is not enough to do it, charge 2.5k - at this level it won't hurt your sales either way.
  • 3 0
 @bananowy: Exactly. Foes wanted a 25mm thru axle for max stiffness, so they made one. People bought their frames and shocks knowing they were buying a well thought out system, not something that was compatible with inferior items. Clear parallel.

IMO @PabloBrightRacingShocks would have been better off putting a Charger damper in an upside down chassis he designed. Chassis design leaves room for improvement on modern forks (creaky CSU etc) - little room for improvement on the mega bucks that FOX and SRAM spend on damper design. As you can see from the 'review' this would have removed the main issue of contention (see Lefty/Ocho...).

And LMAO at reusing Type 2 Judy spring design for 'new' negative spring design - anyone able to explain why those aren't still current in RS forks?

The damper/spring is clearly part of a suspension ideology (like Lefty design) that Bright pushes, regardless of whether the market needs or wants it. Eventually he'll do what the market wants or not.
  • 4 1
 @nouseforaname:

sorry but that's not exact. The peculiarity of our systems is that of being designed and developed for pure performance.
The cartridge tested was used with an incorrect set up.
The BRIGHT cartridge offers much higher performance and driveability than an industrial cartridge.
The manufacturing quality of a BRIGHT cartridge is very high.
But only by trying it can you understand.
  • 2 0
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: I'm sorry, Pablo, I was much too harsh on your product. I really can understand the a single individual's (as opposed to an already successful large company's) desire to create something oneself. I can also understand how some people want to buy something made by such an individual. I also don't know your operating costs; probably they are much higher than I had imagined.
Still, I would listen to feedback, both from people online and ones that you know personally. If I were in a different income bracket and a few things about this fork were different- for example if it used a 20mm axle with torque caps, or even a 30mm axle with torque caps, then I would consider it. Come to think of it, would it be so hard to produce different dropouts to allow people to use stiffer hubs, and just pressfit the one the buyer wanted? As you can see, a lot of people here want 20mm or even more.
  • 31 7
 Wow, a hot mess of overpriced. Poor spring, poor dampening, excessive axle to crown height, a marketing blurb that says why these failings make it great, and an obscene price tag that makes an EXT look like a value item. I bet they sell a boatload of them.
  • 10 0
 its crabon fibre though
  • 3 1
 excessive axle to crown?
  • 3 2
 The thing is, by selling one or two crazy expensive items like that, you have probably covered operating costs for a month.
Remember that German guy who was making FS frames that weighed like 10lbs with shock, but which were so call and special because they were boutique? By charging 6K per frame, all he had to do was sell like three frames- probably fifteen hours of work!!!!- to make a living. Sane people would not pay such prices for such junk, but who cares? He's not looking for large numbers of sane people, he's looking for a very small number of probably not sane people.
  • 6 0
 "Dampening"?
  • 3 0
 @Insectoid:

You’re on to something, but anybody’s handmade frame takes way way more than 5 hrs to cut, mitre, jig, machine, weld, clean up, align, prep for finish, finish, assemble, and package (missed tons of steps there)
  • 3 1
 @AckshunW: I guess you're right, but I would be stunned if that guy's end wage was anything less than 200 euros/ hour, especially after making a few and getting faster it. I guess the best example would be those yahoos, can't remember their name, who make those 700 dollar derailleur cages. Take the profits, invest some percent of them in advertising to dupe more people, sell like seven of them a month and you're doing pretty well (depending on how many people you employ).
  • 2 1
 @Insectoid: I'm in the process of building a decent shop and get into the world of professional framebuilding. I can assure you that you can sold a few 6k€-frames before seeing your investment back. The more I go the less I see the bottom of my expenses. Honestly I doubt all the framebuilders actually make a living out of their craft :/
  • 2 0
 @Insectoid:
It is not so.
The build quality of BRIGHT is very expensive.
Some of the technological solutions are complex and expensive
in terms of time and initial investment ... (but not mentioned here).
build a frame is so much easyer.
  • 1 0
 @freebikeur: I'm sorry I was too harsh on your frames (the craftsmanship does look great), and can imagine that operating costs are much higher than I can imagine. I also forgot that a real person was reading my remarks.
I do appreciate the desire to create something oneself, and the idea that there should be room for one-man shows instead of just huge companies like Fox and Trek; I also get the desire to buy from people like you and have done it myself. Still, 6000 euros for a frame to me is just an absolutely staggering price, and one that I couldn't bring mysefl to pay even if I were much richer.
  • 1 0
 @Insectoid: ahah, I'm not the framebuilder you were talking about bro, I'm just a dude getting a try at it. Having researched the market alot and having seen various price points, the sky really is the limit but you can also find a well executed handmade bike for the price of a traditional off the shelf option. Craftmanship, details, finish, custom touches, geometry and process adds up in the price. Some builders often have to buy or make tools only for one customer's request.
If the builder you mentionned's got a market at 6k good for him, you're nowhere near the price of some handmade road frames trust me! Smile
  • 1 0
 @Insectoid: you can buy a colnago f or that lol
  • 19 0
 I read and reread this trying to open my mind to the alternate approach, but it's really hard to wrap my head around not using sag. I can't understand how this thing generates traction without having any significant amount of negative travel.
  • 11 1
 I assume it's ment to be ridden stiff(passive),no attempt to help the bike up and over obstacles.
Just let it do its thing,in the wallowy,soft midstroke.
And to have some control,overdamp it.

No idea why these obsolete ideas and tech is being sold for so much and as a plus/pro.
  • 7 5
 Is needed to try. To try in the correct set up and following the way shared by the manufacturer. We use all dynamical sag. We do not use static sag. This means to have a reactive and easy handling front end but in the same time a very good traction
  • 6 7
 @metalpsycho:

I'm sorry but it's just the opposite. The BRIGHT rs system is the innovative system.
And it offers a guide in which the cyclist decides the trajectory by riding the bike more freely and without fear.
but it must be used in the correct configuration.
  • 12 5
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: you're English is quite shocking but the problem isn't translation it's explanation. Saying marketing terms like "cyclist decides the trajectory", "reactive and easily handling front end", "precision and torsional stiffness so evident and clean, precise, robust, to overturn the concept of upsidedow" without further explanation into how your product achieves these results is not good practice. Your responses to valid criticisms in the comments with essentially "I'm an expert, trust me bro" is not helping.
  • 4 2
 @spicysparkes:
You are right. I just say: try, than have your own opinion.
This is what I say. Because is not easy,
EVEN not short, to explain dynamical
concept here. Explain seems like male
marketing. Agree?
  • 3 1
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: I'd appreciate if you did explain dynamic sag. I can't afford to buy a fork that costs almost as much as my whole bike, but I am curious to learn about it, and a Google search tells me nothing.

There has to be negative travel to make traction. In other forks, that comes out of the sag. Regular forks obviously use more positive travel while riding than sitting still, but surely that is not all you mean by "dynamical sag?"

To be clear, I want to see you succeed. Innovation is a great thing and it's cool you have produced a unique fork. I hope you get a good chance to defend your product, like maybe an interview on the pinkbike podcast.
  • 3 0
 @AndrewHornor:
Il sag inteso come un abbassamento statico e poco reattivo, come sulle forcelle più commerciali, non aiuta ad alte velocità. E al tempo stesso rende goffo l’avantreno e la manéggi abilità’ dello sterzo. Il sag della BRIGHT è bassissimo staticamente (circa 5-10 mm).
Però non dobbiamo valutare la bicicletta e la sospensione anteriore in termini statici. Tutto deve essere visto in movimento. Quando sei in marcia esiste una fluttuazione (galleggiamento) del tuo avantreno. Questo galleggiamento è continuo. Quello è il sag dinamico. Cioè un abbassamento che segue il tuo andamento, che viene attivato a bassissima velocità e che non è associato necessariamente a shocks.
È semplice ma intuitivamente si comprende bene, almeno spero.
Il nostro sistema si basa su una migliore gestione dell’abbassamento dinamico.
La cartuccia BRIGHT viene da uno sviluppo continuo durato ormai oltre 10 anni che ha evidenziato che utilizzando delle valvole idrauliche molto precise (che assorbono in modo pronto tutte le asperità) si riesce ad avere una trazione di alto livello anche se la curva di progressione statica è apparentemente troppo decisa.
La fase negativa:
il sag statico viene proposto anche allo scopo di recuperare le depressioni del
terreno. Ma questo, ad alta velocità, è vero solo in teoria.
Le velocità necessarie per recuperare le depressioni del terreno sono enormemente più alte della capacità di estensione del sag statico (che per sua natura non ha grade reattività).

Alla fine del discorso,
è una guida diversa. Possibile che non piaccia a tutti, ma è una guida che offre grande trazione sopratutto su pietre e radici dove è necessaria reattività e stabilità. Ma occorre provarla per capire di cosa sto parlando.
Non si tratta di rendere dura una forcella normale. È tutto diverso e più complesso di quanto sembri. Solo guidandola si conprende.
  • 1 0
 @PabloBrightRacingShocks: Molto interessante, grazie per aver dedicato del tempo a spiegare!
  • 20 2
 How come that "unique and boutique" is listed as an advantage? By most objective criteria this is a huge disadvantage. It usually implies that prices are higher and spare parts and service items are harder to find.
  • 2 0
 in the MTB world theres certain brands considerd Boutique, such as SC, transition, yeti, pole(or even HP bikes) etc The idea on these bikes isnt sold based on performance but based on ideas/design's that are unique and different.

That uniqueness comes at the cost of high prices, Mtb'ers especially more well off people will buy these bikes because either their skill level is high enough the actual performance of the bike doesn't really matter and they want to have a "boutique bike" or people who think by spending more will help their riding which 99% of the time it doesn't.
  • 2 0
 Unique and boutique is kind of a nicer but meaningless way of saying you won't see other people with it, and it probably costs a lot. I'd prefer they give credit to rider owned companies, including this one, as opposed to bike brands owned by multinational companies or conglomerates. Give credit to Transition, Pivot, We Are One, Guerilla Gravity, Intense, Commencal and companies like that which are owned and run by riders as opposed to Santa Cruz, Cannondale, GT, and the like which are owned by multinational investment companies.
  • 3 0
 @mtb-thetown: I do understand what "boutique" implies and why some people buy boutiqe products. What I don't understand is why it is listed as an inherently positive attribute. Seems very subjective to me.
  • 17 0
 + Unique and boutique is not a pro unless the rest of the fork can live up to it. All that means is you won't have spare parts if the company doesn't succeed.
  • 4 0
 Well, at least you'll be able to easily find a wheel for it since they used the wrong axle size!
  • 17 0
 Charlie: Well, if you were directly above him, how could you see him?
Maverick: Because I was inverted
  • 5 0
 Coughbullsh!tcough
  • 9 0
 Now if somebody would just make an up-to-date version of the Mountain Cycles San Andreas frame I could finally have the bike I've been lusting after for 35 years!

Seriously though, why does nobody make monocoque frames like the San Andreas still?
  • 1 0
 You are in luck, Foes is still making frames.
  • 8 0
 Sweet! Let me buy a fork that costs $2200 that is still in the testing process and isn’t really dialed yet. Sounds like fun times. Blowing a wad of cash on something your highly like to not be happy with AND not be able to get rid of.
  • 10 0
 Ouh man, what a mess of a comments section…
Anyway, thanks for the review Seb, I liked it and am always happy to hear about products that do things a little differentlySmile
  • 9 2
 That air spring kinematics seems pretty awful. There's a reason behind the Vorsprung Secus creating a more linear spring through the entirety of the travel, unlike this fork which seeks little small bump sensitivity and soft mid stroke support. Perhaps coil sprung forks and open bath dampers are the ideal setup for actual hard charging through rough stuff, with not much room for improvement apart from dumb ideas that can be marketed to consumers despite not actually making improvements. The only tangible improvement in suspension I foresee is position sensitive dampers like the dt swiss fork being tuned for heavy charging in mind, and more active electronic control systems that can adjust HSC and LSC rates based on current riding conditions.
TLDR; an open bath, coil sprung, position sensitive, electronic damper control fork would probably be an amazing piece of kit
  • 1 0
 I’d like to learn: what makes an open bath damper (like motion control I’d imagine) better than a cartridge damper (eg. Charger)?

Also, I think the ultimate fork would have an actuator that can change the length of the fork without having a spring. Eg. When you hit a rock, it shortens and then extends to allow the wheel path to perfectly match the contour of the rock.
  • 1 1
 @MaplePanda: No, open bath like Crconception, avalanche, 2005's marzocchi, and so on. Less seals, more oil, some progressivity. A bit more weight and the compression knob at the bottom, but the best function.
  • 10 0
 Nothing says 'boutique' like having to double-check which number is weight and which number is price.
  • 6 0
 When you design a fork, it turns out to be pretty limited, so you try and spin the negatives as features. You know something is wrong when you have to revert to using elastomers in a fork this century. This sounds extremely unrefined.
  • 8 1
 Oh great. More expensive boutiqe parts that perform worse than their mainstream counterparts.
  • 2 0
 Exactly!
  • 6 0
 Back to the mid-1990’s. Morons spending triple what decent parts cost for boutique stuff that hasn’t been properly tested and often doesn’t work (or work well).
  • 5 0
 @wyorider: That still happens. I bought a Specialized Enduro last year and after the third frame broke because of production defects I feel more like a beta tester than a customer...
  • 2 2
 @wyorider: You think anything from the bigger companies is properly tested? You must have read about the 1990s in a book.
  • 7 2
 This is the only original and actual mountain bike rider content on the whole front page. And you want me to pay for an “Outside” subscription?
What I see is PB getting watered down with office-based content.
  • 4 0
 Right? This is exactly why I won't be buying a subscription anytime soon. I'm not against paying for ORIGINAL content, but if 50% of what I'm getting is just links to youtube videos, then it's not worth it in my opinion.
  • 6 1
 Man, way too much static over a niche fork with a niche design philosophy. From someone who could not care less either way, the optics from Pablo and his minions in the comments are quite bad.
  • 5 1
 The number of people starting flame wars over this thing is completely bonkers.

Somebody explain to me how a suspension with no sag is supposed to provide more traction, or make you faster? Why is it that ~3 years ago a large portion of the top EWS riders were using a vorsrpung luftkappe, a device that provides more negative spring force and makes the fork 'softer off the top'

I understand the desire to innovate, and I can see why somebody would choose an USD fork as a starting point, but having a fork that has no negative travel? What's the purpose of that?
  • 8 0
 Shiver me timbers
  • 3 2
 Yo, ho, heaveitovertheboat, ho
  • 4 0
 so once you put the damper and spring in the same side, why not just go down the lefty route? Now you have a strut that is more torsionally stiff than any traditional fork, and you keep all the USD benefits.
  • 1 0
 You’re right, but the Lefty system is probably patent protected. X-Fusion had to go a different route with their inverted, but copying the principle.

They should split damping and spring on this fork. The comment “the forces are different so it isn’t actually balanced” - but it’s still far more balanced than not splitting. And likely gives you more room for improving setup and tuning.
  • 6 4
 Inverted forks, unless they have some substantial guards over the stanchions, I just keep thinking the chances of getting scratches or chips in the stanchions when this low to the ground is much more likely. How f***d off would you be if you just spent big bucks on these, only to have them damaged when riding down some overgrown single track.
  • 5 1
 Yet dirtbikes have been using them for years, and it's not really a huge deal if you have covers. In fact, with a good cover you'll have less damage than a traditional fork which are all essentially uncovered.
  • 5 0
 I’ve spent years on my dorado (4,000km last time I checked), and dirt bikes with inverted forks and have never once had a scratched or chipped stanchion. My dirt bike in particular spends a lot of time riding uncleared terrain and trails with loose granite that has destroyed radiators and other parts.
  • 1 0
 hooning around on urban stuff, concrete walls, etc, I've scraped my fork lowers many times......I'd never get away with my own inherent lack of coordination with a USD fork!
  • 3 0
 @Afterschoolsports: Same here with DVO Emeralds and Dorados, never an issue with scratching them in years of use.
  • 1 0
 Not so sure about that. All of my RSU fork got some scratches over time on their stanchions. Also I don't understand why people want USD stanchions guards on the front and not behind the stanchions. Evertime I ride my bike in wet, loose, or muddy terrain I have allmost no dirt sticking to the front of my lowers, while the backside and especially the stanchions are covered in dirt. Which makes sense since the tire is throwing all the dirt either upwards or forwards.
  • 2 1
 @OneTrustMan: if only the stanchions were coated with something completely different to the paint that they use on the lower castings. Maybe an engineered coating that is low friction, wear and impact resistant, and has the ability to be applied in a uniformity that is measured in microns?

That might make a better choice for the stanchions than the cheap paint on the castings that is only good enough to make the forks look good in the shop, and not fail catastrophically before the warranty period ends.
  • 9 3
 " Intended use: Enduro, trail, eMTB"
What does "eMTB" stand for?
  • 21 7
 It stands for extra lazy and fat Ebike riders
  • 11 0
 Expensive Mountain Bikes
  • 1 0
 Im a lazy and fat rider so this sounds perfect!!!
  • 5 5
 You guys can joke all you want, but if this stupid E-Bike trend means that we will get more durable components, I'm down with it.
  • 3 1
 @SimonJaeger:
Yeah, but a lot of those so called more durable e-components are just cheap heavy junk that is actually less durable than normal parts. Just putting an E sticker on it doesn't make it more durable.
Not to mention the snake oil bs products like E-saddles, E-brake pads, E-grips, E-clothing and so on.
  • 2 0
 I come from riding motocross bikes and they found inverted forks were the way to go. It will be really interesting as this becomes more refined, where it will stack up in the next few years. Good luck to designers. Never stop innovating.
  • 2 0
 Dual crown though.
  • 4 0
 Motocross forks deal with a TON of fire/aft forces. These forces are far greater than torsional. So the forks are built so beefy and rigid that torsional isn’t much of a concern. Big, heavy lugs, axles and dual crown.

I certainly think there can be competitive inverted MTB forks but you need to think outside the box. Cannondale Lefty is a good example. I think with some new thinking the Maverick DUC32 axle system could be made to work well. The torque caps are a start.
  • 6 0
 I'm cool with Rock Shox and Fox for half the price.
  • 3 1
 Nice chassis!

Sounds like the air spring needs a stronger and/or adjustable negative spring to balance it at higher than 50 psi. Much like separately tuneable neg springs, be they coil OTT like on DVO, or air such as BOS, CC, Öhlins. That way I can ride higher pos air but still get good initial sensitivity.
  • 5 0
 Put in a Manitou air spring and damper (maybe scaled down Dorado internals) and you might end up with something magical.
  • 4 0
 Look at the rulezmann instagram account. He tried an Intend fork and it’s what you said.
  • 2 0
 Idk about you guys but if im shoping for an enduro fork and one is described as "unpredictable in rocky tech," im looking elsewhere. I love the concept and it looks great and is a phenomenal idea, but i feel like it just would no perform?? Idk id love to try it but this article makes it seem like it would be less than ideal for what it is marketed for.
  • 6 3
 150mm travel fork that has the same ride height and dynamic "feel" of a 170mm fork... still runs out of travel 20mm before a 170mm fork... does it not?
  • 6 3
 a normal 170mm at 25% sag has 42mm sag, and 128mm positive travel
this (at the claimed 13% or 20mm) smaller sag on 150mm leaves 130mm positive travel
  • 9 2
 @AyJayDoubleyou: sounds great if you’re never off the ground
  • 3 2
 @DHhack: If it tops out awkwardly, yes. But if not, it takes the force of your body weight to get it to the sag point, wherever that may be. After that, youve got another 130mm to softly slow your downward motion with either option.
  • 4 6
 20% sag on a 170 mm fork: 136mm of effective travel

10% sag on a 150 mm fork: 135mm of effective travel

Also ultimately irrelevant because the amount of energy a suspension element can absorb and its bump absorption characteristics have very little to do with the amount of travel. Those are mainly governed by the air spring design.
  • 8 26
flag Lorrrr (Nov 22, 2021 at 9:14) (Below Threshold)
 Obviously not because this fork require MAX 5mm of sag against the average 30-40 usually used on a 170. This means that dynamically speaking the travel on the fork that SEB used is too long. To compensate his stupidity then, he removed air and lowered the fork resulting in unridability. Like I said this review is useless
  • 9 2
 @BenTheSwabian: Bump energy absorption is nice and all for certain aspects such as jumping, but don't forget that the main purpose of suspension is to keep the wheel in contact with the ground. Sag is set because even though more "effective travel" (AKA, up-travel) sounds great, you still need both up-travel and down-travel. And setting 10% sag on a shorter fork means that you're missing 19mm of down-travel, which is important for when the shock needs to extend into dips and ruts to maintain contact with the ground.

This whole thing is just a lazy attempt at justifying shortcomings. Sure, you can change the damping to work around the lesser sag in order to run the same up-travel, but you're not making a 150mm fork into a 170mm fork just by changing sag. Not when you understand how suspension actually works and that "effective travel" is ignoring the important aspect of down-travel. Because we could just do the same thing with the 170mm fork, where we run 10% sag and suddenly we're running 160mm of up-travel.
  • 6 2
 @nickfranko: Yep. Thereis a reason baja racers focus on downtravel as much as uptravel. No downtravel means it skips when there is a hole. Likewise, all suspension extends past the sag point after a compression. If it does not, it has excessive rebound and will pack down.
  • 14 1
 @Lorrrr: @Lorrrr: Easy there friend, sounds like you really have something against the guy. Most of us are here while taking our daily crap, commenting peacefully in the process
  • 3 4
 @carym: Bicycles and trucks/buggies are so different that you can't compare their workings.
  • 4 3
 @nickfranko: You're not wrong, but your argument is besides the point. The reason why offroad racing vehicles are set up with extremely long springs and lots of negative travel is to establish traction while accelerating hard on uneven surfaces. They try to get the best possible tracking by maximum articulation. But that is obviously not a priority when you're on a mountainbike. The primary job of your bikes suspension is bump absorbtion while going downhill and not to establish maximum traction on acceleration. There's a few reasons why you want a certain amount of what you call "downtravel" on your bikes' suspension, but you're overstating its importance.
  • 6 1
 @BenTheSwabian: Not "effective travel", should be "positive travel". The "effective travel" is still only 150mm.

Thing is, anyone could do this with a normal fork: slap a 150mm right-side-up fork on a bike designed for 170mm and run it at 10% sag, get close enough on sagged axle-to-crown. But no one is doing this, because negative travel is good!

And it's not just about the amount of energy absorbed by the system, it's also about the time/distance taken to absorb that energy. With 170mm of travel, the system has a lot of time/distance to do the absorbing relative to 100mm of travel. A 100mm fork could be set up to survive a winning EWS run, but because the system would only have ~60% of the time/distance to dissipate the large impact forces, that dissipation would have to happen more rapidly, which requires much higher spring and damper forces, and thus end up transferring more force through the system to the rider.
  • 2 3
 @nickfranko: That is not how that works. You're completely missing the point of mountainbike suspension.
  • 7 2
 @BenTheSwabian: It's not just about traction while accelerating on trophy trucks, it's also about steering and maintaining a line across massive whoops and ruts and holes. Not sure where you're riding, but that is a priority for a lot of mountain bike riders as well: maintaining a line through rough trails. I'll always argue that the primary point of mountain bike suspension is traction, not impact handling.

People like to talk about how your body has more travel than the bike when talking about hardtails, and that's very true, and also applies to all bikes, really. My arms can absorb the front wheel going over a 4 inch high log, but I can't react fast enough to get the front wheel back down with enough force to immediately (or continue to) turn the bike. (OK, maybe I could, but it takes a lot of energy and I couldn't do it for an entire ride at speed). My fork, however, can do that easily. Same with the back wheel: ever tried to sprint a hardtail or gravel bike up a fire road full of babyheads? Back wheel skips all over the place, even if I'm absorbing the impacts with my body's "suspension", and I have no tractions. Full suspension, however, lets the wheel track up and down and maintains traction.

You only need to look at trials to see that impact absorption is not the primary thing. Trials riders can absorb the impact of a 12 foot drop to flat with zero suspension, but try to accelerate _and turn_ that trials bike over some roots and rocks and it's not going to go as well.
  • 1 0
 There's a bit of personal preference on this as well on how you like it setup. I've used the MRP ramp control cartridge which allows rapid changes on fork ramp on the trail and run both no ramp and full ramp. Both are acceptable but have a very different feel. Full ramp requires lower pressure and generally uses more travel until you hit the end of stoke. In this sense, it's more comfortable generally hitting things but the chassis has excessive motion. Minimum ramp improves the chassis motion and support but loses out on comfort a bit. I would expect a very dynamic rider would prefer strong support and a very passive rider may prefer more ramp but that's more of a guess.
  • 4 2
 @nickfranko: interesting way of thinking. So I guess when the pros run stiffer suspension and use wayyy less sag than the regular joe mountain biker, they are just dumb and making their suspensions shit ?
  • 4 2
 @zede: except they don't.... here are multiple WC DH mechanics saying they run ~20% sag up front. Pretty typical.

www.pinkbike.com/news/suspension-setup-tips-from-6-world-cup-technicians-leogang-dh-world-cup-2019.html
  • 5 4
 I ride one. I weight 31. My fork ‚sags‘ 5-10mm max. The biggest difference while riding is less arm fatigue. By far less. While braking in the steeps, she’s higher in travel and gives me more usable of it. So, something seems to work the right way i think.
  • 2 0
 I'm not trying to be an ass, but, you weigh 31 what? Kilos? Stone? Pounds? I can't think anything that sounds reasonable?
  • 1 1
 @erg6k: sorry, 69kg
  • 1 1
 Sorry, 68kg is the weight..
  • 1 0
 I still love my fox 36 van rc2 ,there is nothing compared to that ,I say nothing ,the only thing I saw nearly identical is when the fox man pushes the dh World Cup forks ,it’s like butter,fast rebound ,but it doesn’t creat that jumpiness ,it is just like all forks should behave,these new ones aren’t like that
  • 1 0
 " I tried everything from 48 to 65 psi, but I found that with more than 55 psi the fork was too harsh when it first made contact with the ground, caused it to top-out hard like a slide-hammer even with the rebound very slow, and made it too firm at the end of the travel, making it almost impossible to use more than 120 mm of travel."

I'm going to bet that Seb was at 0mm sag with the higher pressures and didn't feel the ride was adequate so reduced it to the 50psi he settled on where the ride was best. The fact that meant there was 20mm of sag at that point probably wasn't his goal, just that's where the best performance was and it ended up with some sag even though it isn't preferred.
  • 1 0
 Non capisco come possa un tester anche se professionista a fare una prova senza rispettare minimamente le indicazioni del produttore! Se decide di fare tutto di testa sua poi cosa pretende ??? Poi vorrei sapere se tutti quelli che sono intervenuti hanno mai montato una Bright !!! Oppure si basano solo sui disegni del progetto e delle geometrie??? Prima di valutare il parere di un'altro PROVATE E POI DITE LA VOSTRA! Io sono 2 anni che giro e faccio gare con la Bright non tornerei mai indietro!!!!!
  • 4 0
 2000 euros for a fork that isn't working properly. lol
  • 4 0
 Unpredictable in rocky tech on an enduro fork-deal breaker.
  • 6 2
 The fact that torsional stiff wasn't mentioned again is a good sign.
  • 9 2
 Perhaps it's just that the damper and spring are so flawed that Seb was unable to notice anything besides them.
  • 6 0
 He literally mentioned the vague cornering feel over and over again. It's a bit of a stretch to read "It felt like crap in the corners, but I struggled to tell if this was down to the crap spring, the crap damper or the crap chassis" and to assume he meant "torsional stiffness is fine"
  • 6 1
 "Looks flexy"
  • 2 9
flag HiddenHeroes (Nov 22, 2021 at 11:11) (Below Threshold)
 It isn't
  • 4 3
 Is flexy. Cos it's a USD fork. Even triple clamp USD's are too flexy at mtb weights. Single crown USD is, and always will be, ridiculously flexy. No one makes a good single crown USD. Perhaps it's all a conspiracy organised by all the main suspension manufacturers to stop us having nice toys? Or maybe, just maybe, it's because single crown USD forks are inherantly flexy...
  • 1 3
 @gabriel-mission9: All of the bike parts, frames, suspension designs we have today were shitty in the past, but evolved over time again and again to be what they are right now.
What makes you think USD forks didn't also evolve and got better?
I have a Intend Flash and I did try the side flex test ( wheel clamped between legs while twisting the handlbar )
This fork is almost as stiff as my Lyrik and stiffer than my Fox 36 Rhythm which isn't really surprising since the Rhythm is a damn noodle.
While riding the Flash it feels pretty normal to my other forks. The huge brake stiffness however is very noticable.
  • 5 2
 @OneTrustMan: Errrrrr. The 36 is a noodle and the lyric is stiff? I think you need to get your knees recalibrated bud.
  • 3 2
 @gabriel-mission9: Or you need to get your facts before bullshitting anyone else? It was measured before, 36 was the flexier than lyrik in every direction.
  • 2 1
 I literally work with the things every day. I have owned and ridden multiple examples of both from their earliest inception to versions that haven't even been released yet. I know every single component of each like the back of my hand. I have done the stiffness tests. But sure, you regurgitate some info you read on the internet one time and you be proud of it...
  • 3 0
 Stanchion Guards - MTB design still refusing to take obvious R&D design from dirtbikes lol
  • 3 0
 What do they say in business, do it first or do it better. Which one is this?
  • 1 0
 My only 2 complaints that I see is 15mm axle should have been 20mm and it should have a torsional arch like DVO those guards just look shit and don't actually protect your stantions too well by the looks of it.
  • 12 8
 15mm axle Facepalm
  • 2 0
 Almost 2000euros, and you'll need a special damping cartridge / megatuning to make it great?
I'll pass
  • 2 0
 Expensive proposal (I wont say solution) to a problem that doesn't really exist.
  • 4 0
 Wiggle Wiggle Wiggle
  • 3 5
 Not really
  • 3 0
 When you reverse, things come from behind you.
  • 2 0
 150mm of travel isn't 170mm no matter how hard you try to justify it. Embellishing 6 inches for more never works. Trust me.
  • 3 0
 Is just me? Or does pinkbike feel like a sinking ship these days?
  • 2 0
 Thanks for the comprehensive review
  • 2 0
 dont buy! save your money and the planet.
  • 1 0
 I like adding nutmeg and cinnamon to my latte . So the fork crown works for me. Nice looking fork.
  • 1 0
 Less sag, bouncy, top out, small travel = lots of travel. I feel like this for at 100psi ROCK HARD
  • 2 0
 Very Italian way: heavy, flexy but pricy
  • 1 0
 Should make a version with lowers that accept the SRAM Predictive Steering hub.
  • 2 0
 SRAM Predictive Steering Hub & Torque Caps are the same exact diameter. The only difference is the is the tooth profile knurle designed to bite into the fork lower vs. smooth mating surface on the Torque Cap.
  • 3 2
 I thought The Science said these inverted forks sucked for MTB.
  • 2 0
 Take a look at Intend.
  • 1 0
 Lucky i kept the mudguard from my Honda RN01
  • 1 0
 I love upside down forks big time
  • 1 0
 Bright future ahead....or not.
  • 1 1
 Ragazzi io è più di un anno che c’è l’ho e da appassionato la ricomprerei 1000 volte

youtu.be/OVK5Tl45Hck
  • 2 3
 I always have top-of-the-range forks from many brands on my Turbo lever, but this is the best I've ever used.

youtu.be/48dfCEWp89o
  • 1 0
 There is still hope for SC and DC Shiver comeback 3
  • 1 2
 let your bike ride and Bright will take you safely on all the trails, she is amazing

Training
youtu.be/48dfCEWp89o

Race
youtu.be/7InlvqueYXI
  • 1 0
 Soo, a lefty with an extra stanchion, then?
  • 1 1
 FINALLY! ive been waiting for this
  • 2 3
 Who runs 40mm of sag on their fork though?
  • 12 1
 who bothers to measure sag on a fork in the first place.
  • 1 0
 I might... I started at 20% (32mm) of 160 on a Float 36, when seated, but took a few PSI out during shakedown/puzzling/dialing-in, so it might be 40mm sag in "attack position", though I haven't measured, I just know what pressure feels good.
  • 2 4
 was that a press release or a review im lost?
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