Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Fox RP3

The Fox Float RP3 is an evolution of the trusty ol'Float which both I and Chipmunk ran happily for three years without any problems on our trusty ol'Marin's. The RP3 came as part of my Turner 5Spot frameset and I was keen to compare just how the much technology was loaded into the new unit. The new bouncer not only packs more of a punch but it's lighter at around the 200g mark compared to the Float's 250g-ish. Both the old and new can's are air sprung with a useful range of rebound control as standard. However, the new contender has an additional pro-pedal lever (blue) mounted over the rebound adjuster (red). The 3 position lever subtly alters the ride by employing minimal, medium or high levels of pro-pedal. Neither have a lockout that would put pressure on your frame and linkages.

The accompanying Fox literature waffles on about cancelling rider induced bob whilst still remaining active whilst offroad. Although it took me a few rides to become accustomed to the handling of my new rig, when repeatedly riding over small roots the three settings do markedly alter the ride. Now that I've plenty more miles on the RP3, I find that it typically stays in the middle position for the majority of the terrain. I'll flip it to maximum on asphalt, especially climbs which tightens the handling and only drop it to the softer minimum setting on rough descents or over particularly rutted terrain. The control over traction it offers it quite amazing and it would have been very interesting to compare the RP3 in our ol'Marin Tara's - which housed the Float.

I've found it be a reliable, no fuss system that's handy to have during rides and it's also very easy to setup. Simply add psi to dial in sag and fine tuning from there over the next few rides to ensure that you're using all available travel whilst in the rough, while not bottoming out. There are no negative chambers to balance, bottom out, high or low speed adjusters to complicate setup and straight out out of the box it's performed perfectly. Period, home servicing of the air can is so easy, well worth doing to prevent problems and hasn't altered since the original. Regular regreasing on our ol'Floats saw it well passed 3,500 miles without even a new set of seals.

Once my RP3 falls out of warranty I'll be looking towards getting the unit Push'd, which should improve the ride further. If that's possible...


Farqui said...

Details of the PUSH modification here.