Chassis and internals
Not surprisingly, The Message is largely made from carbon fiber, with the legs, crown, tapered steerer, and linkage pieces all being the expensive black stuff. The pivot hardware is aluminum because, rather than saving some grams by using bushings, you'll find sealed bearings at all eight pivot points. There's a 180mm post mount on the brake side, but you can jump up to 203mm by bolting on an adapter. I think that also underlines the fact that Trust really does intend this thing to be used in any setting where you'd put a 150mm-travel fork into action.
On the front of the white Salsa is an early proof-of-concept prototype using Fox dampers. On the right is an early carbon prototype.
I expected the axle to be keyed on the ends so as to tie the left and right clamps together, but Weagle says that they've gone with a standard 15 x 110mm Boost thru-axle that's also Torque Cap compatible. He was originally expecting to have to use pinch clamps (they're on the older prototypes), but the chassis proved to be impressively rigid and they weren't needed.
If you're thinking that the fork legs are a little bit fat, it's because they're hiding two air springs and single twin-tube, thru-shaft damper. Weagle wasn't too keen to jump into what's going on inside The Message's damper, but he did let on that it uses a nitrogen-charged IFP that runs at very low pressures, and also that it can pretty much be rebuilt anywhere with a bucket of oil and a few tools. That means the those who know what they're doing can get inside to tinker with things, and those who don't know what they're doing might take it to someone who does.
This may take some time to get used to...
As far as adjustments go, the silver lever at the top of the right fork leg toggles between your open, medium, and firm low-speed compression settings, while an anodized red clicker tweaks the low-speed rebound at the opposite end. Pretty straightforward stuff damping-wise, but the guys at Trust sounded a bit coy when I wanted to get into it, so I suspect there's still more to learn.
While looking nothing like the production fork, prototypes like this one let Weagle test pivot locations and suspension setup.
When was the last time you saw an air-sprung fork with valves on both legs? These days, essentially everything uses a single air spring in one leg, but remember what I said about normal and Trust not doing that? The Message has an air spring in each leg, both with self-adjusting negative springs via a dimple on the air rod. Weagle did the math to have the volume of the two chambers call for the rider's body weight in PSI, at least as a close starting point. So, at 165lb, I'd put 165 PSI in each leg. They'll also have volume-reducing tokens to put in there if you need more ramp-up, but Trust did say that they went pretty aggressive with the spring curve. There are some pretty skookum-looking bottom-out bumpers, too.
Tested: rear derailleurs above 300$
Looks cool, and I bet it doesn't creak like my Fox 36, and I bet you don't have to stand it upside down for five minutes before you use it to get some good small bump action.
Point is, nothing is perfect. Telescopic forks are far from perfect, and they aren't exactly cheap either. I mean, when you can buy a football for $10, a set of forks for $1100 is not in any way cheap.
Get at it Dave Weagle. You are a visionary!
Manitou Durado pros
Boxer World Cup.
These 2000$ + forks?
This will be worth it just for the lower unsprung weight and trailside caché in my view.
Me I'm waiting for the big one 205mm you should be able to get one for under $4,000 US dollars a bargain at $2,000 per leg.
I wish them luck but I think a miracle will be in order.
2500 x $2700 = $6,750,000
Actually, I think given how different this is from a telescopic fork it actually looks pretty good.
Also $2700 is obviously loads, but it's the first one, if it is successful then there is bound to be a range eventually with lower prices.
DW: "HEY FACTORY, WHAT'S MOQ?"
FACTORY: "(UNDER BREATH, OH GOD WE DON'T WANT TO MAKE THAT, TELL 'EM SOMETHING RIDICULOUS LIKE 2,000) UH 2,500"
DW: "SOUNDS GOOD, HIT GO!"
Maybe we should have a contest to see who can come up with the best “message” this product delivers? You know, stuff like:
Screams “more money than common sense” ...
All your bass are belong to us ...
Kiss your retirement goodbye ...
Hey, your wife’s divorce lawyer just called ...
Fuglier than a fugly stick ...
Does a spork take a dive in teh woods ...
We were gonna call it The Double-DLink, but then thought it would send the wrong “message”. Hey, wait a minute ... EUREKA, THAT’S IT!!!
The message is that you remember the name and the message is: telescopic fork makers pay attention. Also the mesaage may be I have much pricier fork than you. Sure. But assuming malice is quite childish that’s my message to you, and I also don’t mean no malice. Lighten up bro. Life’s too short for negative emotions
@TheUnknownMTBR I wrote it with a giant douche smile. Interwebs aren’t good at conveying feelings other than anger and nerdy f*cklessness.
Then I demoed a Knolly Endorphin...
You don't really know how a suspension must perform until you put your hands on a Knolly.
We already have a President, thankyou.
I just find it funny everybody saying 'looks horrible / weird' or 'looks like it makes sense / promising' without any comment on it working or its potential benefits.
But it sounded like Waki was saying it ‘looks’ like it might work as opposed to previous attempts on the theme. Granted there’s a massive difference between that and it actually working. But I also agree with him.
Did you get your hate of carbon from Pole bikes unsubstantiated rant?
Any comment about why you believe carbon to equal environmental death and metal to be ok?
My major concern is that the patent protection ends up drawn too widely and it throttles competition and sensible prices.
.....and at a practical level we won’t see it for demo in the UK for years and the price will be way too obscene in £ to think about buying without trying.
Lightly used kidney. Just one previous owner. No dents or scratches. Never operated with heavy narcotics or involved in serious accidents.
Sold to highest bid above $2700 USD.
This airplane mechanic will certainly consider the option, come spring.
This fork = ??? = high price
Just remember that DW is way, way smarter than you.
Usually, riders ask for predictability, not preferring strange leverage curves or mechanisms that interfere with brake / rear suspension interaction. This seems the case for DH and motorcycle racers who often remove electronic suspension for racing as it being constantly variable removes the predicability of a mechanically damped setup.
The telescopic fork is one part of the bike that operates in this way and is a design stuck to at much higher expenditure levels of sport, though this could be regulation?
What will a racer / high end rider think of a variable axle path from their front wheel, how will this alter the bikes balance in terms of front / rear suspension and is anti-dive (though not the goal here as stated) actually a beneficial trait? Be interesting to see if this takes off, would love to try one.
What happens if this gets out there, people actually ride it before deciding, and love it? What if this radically looking piece of hardware out performs a regular fork by a huge margin? Is it then worth the almost double price of a new Fox? Or is it worth more? Performance far outweighs the price if it works. I mean that's what is all about, isn't it? Having the latest and greatest? What happened when carbon frames first came out? I certainly wasn't going to pay for one, but after riding it I'd spend the money. I mean really, in the grand scheme of things, if this fork performs, and it takes a 7-8k bike to 8-9k, is it really that much of a difference in price that you wouldn't pay for it to have the best?
It won't. How I know? Motorcycles. If the non-telescopic forks made sense, the moto-enduro dudes, as well as the motocross dudes would all use them.
There have been plenty of non-traditional fork designs in the moto world, none of them work well.
With a fork though, not so sure, the fundamentals remain the same push bike fork v moto fork albeit one is significantly lighter than he other.
I do remember anti dive mechanisms being tried in moto and the riders preferred he geometry change that braking induced over the anti dive system - I know this wasn't the primary drive behind the fork design but is touted as a benefit.
As I say, I'm super interested to see how they work out, I just doubt we are seeing any more than an incremental development in the real world, it's a very nicely designed hash of an old system (devils is the details of course) at the end of the day.
Many of the designs worked very well and made it to production bikes. The real issues were production costs due to lower volume sales and complexity/reliability. So are not indicative on whether they work but other factors.
Both BMW and Yamaha produced variations for the road. Also many factory produced sidecar equipped motorcycles used to be equipped with girder type forks due to the ability to accept side load(not an issue on a traditional motorcycle).
The new Yamaha Niken isn't ludicrously priced and has a pretty mental fork / twin wheel arrangement, that bikes meant to excel in some areas but you won't see that front end on an R1M anytime soon.
I’ve asked that before but never found the time to design and prototype a fork that does that - because I’m too busy running the business that I did start by accident 10 years ago!
This is much less of a concern with MT. Bikes due to the lower rotational mass but is more an indication that what works for one use ie. motorcycles may not work for another and vice versa.
So I agree that we need a review by a large group high level rider/racer testers to really understand if this works or if the increased stability will actually hinder handling as it was found on racing motorcycles.
It's about time the linkage concept got the attention it deserves!
And now for my complaint:
Dave says: "What happens if you build a device that lets the stability of the front-end of a bicycle or motorcycle increase on corner entry rather than decrease? It's a simple question that I don't think anybody has ever asked."
Not only have we asked it, this is nearly a copy of the language we use for our Stability on Demand technology.
Focus on stability, rather than axle path: yep, that's the core of our technology.
Dynamic geometry: yep, that's us, too.
Constant trail: in pitch, ditto; in heave, ours increases trail for ultimate stability.
Sealed bearings at all pivots with a lifetime warranty: ditto.
Proprietary suspension hardware: nope, ours is off-the-shelf.
$2700: Perfect, makes Structure look like a bargain! Smile
Challenge accepted, Dave. Time for a group test!
If people could actually try it I bet you could gain a lot of sales
The more useful answer is "mid-2019 ... probably".
No one is more eager than us to put our bike under the public - as soon as it's ready, you'll hear all about it! Until then, you can ask your favourite shop, trail guide, or skills instructor to contact us about acquiring a demo and you can subscribe to our mailing list via www.structure.bike
Thanks for your support!
It's true our frame + fork is more than the Trust fork, but that shouldn't be surprising. A Structure chassis is priced comparably to a traditional carbon frame with a Trust fork, but offers the advantage of clean-sheet integration.
I'll be in line for one of these because I like trying new tech and don't mind the risks of early adoption.
I'm not saying the performance of the Lauf, which had relatively insignificant market penetration, will lead to acceptance. I'm saying this is the psychology of something new not being accepted on a wide scale until it has been seen for a certain number of times by the masses. Everyone here now knows what a Lauf is and that it is a "viable" design concept regardless of peoples opinions about its performance. This will open the door for acceptance of a certain look or style of product if improvements have been made to the first-to-market version of said product.
Everyone laughed when I first started using the original Samsung Galaxy Note in 2012, holding their iPads to their heads and pretending to dial them. That size phone is pretty much standard and now everyone mocks my Luddite iPhone SE.
Truth: I just like being an attention whore at the trail head. LOL
If I were to drop this on my bike (140mm fork), it'd lower the front end by almost 20mm, something that is sure to have an impact on the geometry of the bike. If they really feel that having a 130mm fork that can take the place of longer forks the bike was designed for (unless I misunderstood that statement and it's going to be adjustable travel), then there is going to have to be some mechanism of raising the front for proper a2c on bikes with geometry that depends on it.
I always thought (since my first Mag 21) that a pulled swingarm front suspension would be great on a mtb(Saw some photos of Honda MX bikes with pulled swing-arm very long time ago) . So I´m really excited. Would love to test-drive. Wish them great success. Then hopefully prices go down...
Other than that, pretty good-looking. Not quite as good-looking as the old Girvin linkage fork, but still pretty good.
As to your second point, that is just speculation. Ball bearings have some play, otherwise they wouldn't move. What that play translates to at the rim, and how that compares to other forks, is something that neither of us knows. One of the problems with many of the linkage forks in the past has been that the play has been too much.
If they are joined at the pivot axles, they are joined. On this fork, they are not joined at all, except by the axle. On this fork, without the wheel in place, you can completely compress the left side and the right side will not move at all. There is no rear suspension design for which that is true. "True single-pivot designs" especially tend to have very beefy swingarms and pivots.
"Almost zero" play translates to how much relative motion between the handlebar ends and the contact patch? The sliding contacts in a conventional fork are much farther apart than the relevant pivots on this fork, and they support lowers that are connected at both the arch and the axle. Pointing out that displacement of a sliding bushing at the bushing is less than displacement of a cartridge bearing at the bearing is not convincing. Exactly the same argument can be made about the AMP forks (which didn't suffer from the left/right independence issue), and they were noticeably flexier than even the crappy early 90s telescoping forks.
O.k. Now keep on bitching about how you suck and cant afford the fancy stuff.
I think there is some interesting moment coming in MTB industry. Some spin-off situation that will eventually bring many small builders to show their design and we will see unprecedented wave of suspension developement. Thinks are looking hopefully because we wont be discussing water bottles, mega-boostinators and TR inserts for a long time.
I'm surprised that nobody in motorcycle GP's has experimented with anything different of late, but there is so much invested in the standard fork design that nobody can afford to run at the back of the pack while they work our something different. My old BMW had a Telelever front end, but it still looked "conventional." Worked well, though.
Agree 100%. If there is a reason this fork is a winner is Weagle doesn’t do anything less than 100%. None of these guys would bother if they didn’t come up with a game changer. And they did.
Its the same with telescopic vs linkage forks : we get used to see stuff to the point of normal. Telescopic forks are the norm so linkage forks look weird. This linkage fork looks much better than the ones I've seen before. The price is understandably massive and wont help to make those forks look normal.
As others have said, if this design is really so much better than telescopic forks it would have seen wholesale usage in the upper echelons of motorbike racing by now. It’s incredibly naive to think that top level teams in motorsport would stick with conventional forks just because they’d already invested so much time and money in developing them; manufacturers and teams are looking for any advantage, often regardless of cost.
I'm sure Fox & RS could have released something like this, they would have marketed it first for the XC high end bike like the RS1 which is a classic fork but still "different", then overtime taken it over to the other disciplines.
Also I wonder is that architecture may not be brought over to the back end of the bike again (even if it's derived from already), with a smaller damper hidden in each seatstay rather than a big shock, or as the diagonal of a parallelogram, something like that.
Years ago, I saw an article of a group of guys still riding klunkers expousing the benefits of a Schwinn Springer fork because it slackened the head angle and increased wheelbase as it compressed and was pushed into turns. That idea has stuck with me wondering if someone could actually make a good modern linkage fork. I’m hoping these guys are into something, the price will come down eventually.
I wonder if there is an optimal head angle this thing is designed around?
A. Want to try this.
B. Have the money.
C. Have a bike where this is even close to the proper Axle-Crown length.
I find that people who like to try things like this tend to pay attention to those details and won’t fall for the 110-150 travel, 27.5 or 29 is all good on this fork.
I wouldn’t be that surprised if a few showed up FS used at a 25% or more off in the Buy/Sell area within 6 months of being released. That’s fairly common for any component generally speaking. The vultures will be lining up, lol
Lifetime replacement or not, I still have maintenance concerns for all those pivots and wonder how stable it is when they starting wearing and moving around. Time will tell I suppose ....
There was the Look/Fournales, but also the Hurricat Vorace, who also as got a trailing parallelogram. I think the axle parh is exactly the same as on his this fork.
It is also the same conception as the Lauf fork, but with pivots and an hydrauluc damper.
If it really is truly better, the price will come way down and in time it would replace telescopic forks. If past experience is any indication, that's not going to happen.
That said, I have lots of faith in DW and his understanding of suspension geometry. If anyone can make it work phenomenally, he can.
BTW, the 2500 forks x $2700 = $6.75 million gross. That's some serious dough to bring in on the first run. Seems like the lights could be kept on at a much lower margin and if it worked as well as claimed, it would explode in popularity.
At least some of the "technical advances" of the last few years is filtering down to lower price points. Dropper posts, wider rims, larger diameter stanchions, new school geometry and even space for water bottles in the frame is becoming the norm on most new bikes. I cant see this becoming "standard spec" soon.
Otherwise, I don`t know for you, but the best front suspension I`ve experimented till now resides in my Iron Arms
This forks catching attention big time already now. I will give them a try, definitely.
Where I am shocked is that's almost no serious comment from Germans... You know, German engineering an so on....
the "adroit" looks most functional of all linkage forks I've ever seen and seems to be affordable as well...all carbon btw. The Axlepath thing of the "trust message" seems interesting but a backt to back would be intersesting! Linkage fork comparisation any soon @mikelevy ? Semms to line up in a revival of theese kind of suspension....
I bet it'll work pretty well with Weagle on board; love DW, but that's too much money for me unless I'm looking for a solution to a problem ... which I'm not.
When the price drops to half the introductory price, I'll think about it after a test ride.
Seriously tho i'm sure they will have a lower pricepoint model next year, probably call it The Memo or something and price it at $2k so everyone can buy it
I'd pick up a:
Fox 36: $1000
Front & rear Maxxis tires: $130
Enve Handlebars: $170
Fox X2: $650
New Helmet: $150
Local bike park pass: $400
Lunch for everyone at the bike shop: $100
Re: high price.
First evolution of new tech, needing to pay for new developments etc. once this tech takes off I am sure there will be entry level versions. Also downhill versions, XX versions and enduro versions.
I look forward to buying one in 5 years time when they are well established. It would almost worth buying one of these keeping it in the box as an investment and then selling it in 10 years as one of the first ones (be that with either success or failure). .... obviously you’ll need more cash that most of us have hanging around.
Name almost a single thing in the MTB world that is actually more valuable than when it was first made, and please adjust for inflation.
This isnt a fork used by a moto GP rider to win a championship, its just a commercially available product.
Take care dude. Enjoy your riding.
3 successful MTB guys (2 of which sold their companies) decided to build something with all their dividend checks.
Great irony that the axle path (up and back) is what makes this fork supposedly handle so well. It's the same path that Parul Turner and Maverick designed 20 years ago. Again 2 Rock Shock guys decided to build their ultimate mountain bike....
Problem is it didn't catch on well enough to sustain the company.
Love to see the engineering and creativity but for $2700 - not today...
These guy's are nuckin futs! What is it with companies these days?
ProTip: I can get a full set of performance coil overs with custom springs for my lude, and still have $ left over for party supplies. #TruStory
I'm genuinely interested but curious if a longer travel "enduro" version will be forthcoming or if Trust claims this is sufficient for bigger bikes?
And the cycle continues ;-d
this year maybe...
Any idea how much it weighs compared to a traditional fork?
The front wheel axle is not TRAILED by IC but led by IC.
When is the release date for the 170mm version?!!!!!
So this fork is 4.5lbs and costs double with less travel option?
Either way, it's certainly in touch on weight.
Seriously, relax. I tried to compare this 130 travel fork "The Message" fork to a 120mm lightweight 34 Fox trail fork which when I looked it up is: 3.58 lb / 1623 g (29er)
So really calm down dude...so I said "Fox 34 trail forks are floating in the sub 2lbs" my bad for the "2lbs" I wrote this early in the am and made a typo I didn't realize.
Seriously... would anybody put this eye splinter on their bike even if it were free!!!?????? I wouldn't sport this hemmhoroid looking wart if they paid ME to put it on my bike. Major, major fail. Why even have a review
It's like a halloween costume gone wrong!
Have I mentioned how f$%king UGLY this thing is!?
the unnecessary price you have to bear to be spacial.