SOC 14: New Budget CR1 & CR3 Disc Brake Model From Formula, Plus Fork updates
While the official launch is slated for Eurobike, Formula has their new CR1 and CR3 brakes on display at Sea Otter. The brakes will fit between the C1 and R1 in the product line and will replace the RX model.
Both brakes will take advantage of the new SpeedLock system, which uses a quick disconnect system so the hose can be routed through frames without requiring a bleed. The technology is used in various industrial applications, including the tractor industry. They first showed off this particular tech at interbike, where they estimated they disconnected and reconnected the line some 200 times without any issues.
The main difference between the CR1 and CR3 comes down to adjustments. The CR1 is aimed at the OE market, and has a lever reach adjustment, and a removable bushing that adjusts the push rod angle for a more progressive lever feel (called PLA for Progressive Lever Adjustment.)
The CR3 has a tool-free reach adjust and adjustable PLA. It will be sold with sintered pads versus the semi-metallics spec’d on the CR1.What’s this cartridge tech we keep blabbering about? What you see in the picture is what you get. The entire master cylinder is encapsulated in the mechanism pictured above and can be easily pulled out and replaced.
The 33 series fork by Formula have been available for quite some time as a 26″ model (review here,) but now it’s also available for 29″ wheels. They don’t have a 27.5″ specific design yet, but they’ve found there is plenty of clearance with the 26″ fork for a tweener wheel.
They stepped away from developing a 27.5″ specific model because most of the interested they’ve seen in the new wheel size has been from people with mid to longer travel bikes, who would be better served by moving up to the 35 fork.
The lockout is adjusted via a stiff cable – a empty formula hydraulic disc line to be precise. The handlebar mounted mechanism simply turns the line, which is connected to the lockout switch.
Inside, the fork uses ballistol oil. To make the fork more or less progressive, you can ad more or less of the fluid, which is readily available at most hardware stores and is biodegradable. Random fact of the day, ballistol oil is actually the same stuff used to polish the stocks of guns and spiffy up horses manes before a big show.
Not pictured, but also a neat feature for adjustability, is the removable rebound cap. It’s held on securely by a c-clip, but you can also pull it off the fork and use it to adjust the threshold adjustment. This was a running change they made that was suggested by one of their sales guys and is one of the ideas they’ve been able to capitalize on because of their size here in the US.
Formula is based in Italy and the majority of the components are all made there, except for their fork stanchions – which are machined in Japan.