Inverted crown forks have long been the defacto design for motorcycles. They offer lower unsprung weight, which means better suspension action, and the larger diameter outer body is able to be held stronger at the crown, giving it better overall strength and stiffness to control the sliders. They can get away with this design because the weight penalty of a larger thru-axle doesn’t matter on something propelled by petrol instead of Powerbars.
The challenge with using the design on mountain bikes has been making the lower axle strong enough to resist the twisting forces of round stanchions inside the uppers without adding a ton of weight. It also had to keep the legs operating in parallel so they wouldn’t bind as one leg tried to move upward at a different speed (say, during hard cornering or an off camber hit).
German:A believes they’ve found the answer: Teardrop shaped stanchions…
The 2014 Revo forks will be offered in two versions, a shorter travel single crown and long travel dual crown. Both are, obviously, disc brake only. Complete specs (travel, damping, etc.) are yet to be revealed but it’s looking like they may offer only 1-1/8″ steerer tubes.
Like the new Cannondale Lefty’s, the exposed part of the slider is round, which makes it easier to seal off the internals from mud, dirt and dust. Once inside, though, they morph to a teardrop shape to prevent twisting (the Lefty uses a square shape).
German:A builds the bearing race directly into the fork’s crown, which they say improves force transfer into the frame to improve overall fork strength and durability. Most of their single crown forks have either a carbon or alloy steerer tube option, so we suspect the same will be offered here.
Their Kilo parallelogram fork carries over with slight changes to make it lighter. It comes in as light as 1098g with carbon legs on the CNC’d alloy linkage.
A few shock options are available, including one with a remote lockout. It’s available with a carbon steerer for 26″ wheels, and alloy steerer for 26/27.5/29er. Travel is 90mm, putting it in between travel and weight from something like the minimalist Lauf fork and a traditional 100mm fork.