April 21, 2007

Fork FAQ

Why should I get a custom fork?It’s simple, really – I specialize in custom forks If you browse around online, you’ll find lots of people doing unicrown forks, but not many doing really “custom” work where they can change every component of the fork to produce a custom ride, as well as custom length and rake. I machine my crowns myself to the exact specs I want for each rider, I have literally dozens of combinations of crown/steerer/blade/dropout available, and I’ve built hundreds of custom forks. Need a 1″ steerer? Thru axle? ‘Cross fork? Unusual rack mounts? No problem, I’ve done it all. A Waltworks fork is the best steel fork that you can buy, period.

Ok, how much do they cost?
$250 if you’re buying a frame, or $350 if you just want the fork by itself. Insured air shipping in the United States is $15.

How much do your forks weigh? Am I too big/small for one of your custom forks?
I will build forks for anyone, of any size. My forks are truly *custom* (not just prebuilt unicrown blades put together by a custom builder) – I use different configurations and blades/dropouts/steerers to accomplish different ride qualities for different riders. As such, your fork weight will depend on how you ride and what you weigh. Suspension corrected 29er forks weigh between 820 and 1100 grams with an 8″ steerer tube. Non suspension corrected 29er forks and 26″/cyclocross forks can be a bit lighter, down to around 700 grams. I occasionally also build lugged crown road forks, which tend to weigh in the 700 gram range.

What configurations are available?
Here they are, listed in no particular order:

-80-100mm Suspension corrected 29er fork (460-500mm length, any rake). Tapering 25.4mm blades or constant-diameter 28.6mm blades, segmented crown. Disc or cantilever brakes (if you need both, add $20), rack mounts available at no extra charge.

-Non suspension corrected 29er/26″/cyclocross tapering blade fork (390-450mm length, any rake) 25.4mm/14mm tapering blades or constant diameter 28.6mm blades, segmented crown. Disc or canti (if you need both, add $20), rack mount at no extra charge.

-Thru-axle Suspension or non-suspension 29er/26″ constant diameter blade fork (any length, any rake) can be configured for riders 120-240 pounds. Constant-diameter 29mm blades, segmented crown. Disc or cantilever brakes (if you need both, add $20), rack mounts available at no extra charge. Can be built for any type of thru-axle available, including 15mm, 20mm, and 24mm. Axle not included! $100 upcharge applies.

-Tandem forks (offroad or on) – any length and rake needed, any brake setup (disc, v-brake, canti) for teams of any size. No upcharge.

-Fatbike/snowbike forks – any length and rake, any brake setup, for 100 or 135mm spacing, offset or centered axle. No upcharge.

(new!) Road forks – any length/rake/brake configuration. Tig welded segmented crown. 

What’s the warranty?
Lifetime for manufacturing defects, for the original owner. The fork is custom built for YOU and your riding style, so I CANNOT honor warranties on forks that have been sold to a second owner, since I have no control over whether the fork is appropriate for them or their application. No warranty if you crash or abuse your fork, of course.

Do you build unicrown forks?
Yes, if that’s the look you want and appropriate blades are available for your needs.

How about a 1″ steerer?
No problem. If you need a new fork for the old Bontrager/Fat Chance/whatever gathering dust in your shop, I can easily do it. Threaded or threadless are both no problem, though if you need threads, I will need to know the *exact* steerer length required.

How about a tapered steerer?
I am happy to build you a rigid fork with a tapered steerer. There’s a $75 upcharge.

What colors are available?
Forks come in standard gloss or matte black. Alternately, pick any color off the color charts on the main FAQ page for a $50 upcharge. If you want your fork unpainted, subtract $20 from the price.

What was the inspiration for these forks?
Simple, really. I always liked the looks of the old Fat Chance forks, so I decided to build something similar. They rode nice, and they’re VERY customizable (I have 6 different types of fork blade, almost infinite varieties of custom-machined crowns, and 5 different steerers to work with – you can do the math on how many unique combos that is!) so I decided to sell them to customers.

Ok, I’m convinced. What do I need to do to order a fork?
Send me an email with the following information:
-Your weight (with gear) and brief info on your local terrain and riding style.
-Type of fork (ie suspension corrected 29er, cyclocross, etc) and (if known) axle to crown length and rake. If you don’t know what will work right on your frame, just ask me – I can probably figure it out.
-Steerer diameter (1″ or 1 1/8″, 1.5″ available for an extra $75).
-Steerer length required (stock is 250mm/10″ but I can do any length needed)
-Brake setup (v-brake or disc – if you want both, it’s an extra $20).
-Rack mounts? (no charge)
-Fender mounts? (no charge)
-Forks come in standard gloss black or any color from the Cardinal/Tiger charts for an extra $50.

It’s that easy! Please note that fork deposits, like frame deposits, are NON REFUNDABLE – be sure you want a fork before you plunk down the deposit!