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Fox’s 2009 mountain bike suspension lineup

Fox has a slew of improvements to its product line for 2009, but two stand apart: A remote lockout for the F80, 100, 120 RL forks and a new thru-axle standard called 15QR, which is an option for all of its 32mm stanchion forks.

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By Matt Pacocha

Fox’s F120RLC with the new 15QR thru-axle option.

Photo: Matt Pacocha

Fox has a slew of improvements to its product line for 2009, but two stand apart: A remote lockout for the F80, 100, 120 RL forks and a new thru-axle standard called 15QR, which is an option for all of its 32mm stanchion forks.

The new thru-axle measures 15mm and was developed with Shimano. It is a new standard; so some bellyaching is to be expected from other manufacturers. The new design, like Cannondale’s BB30, will be an ‘openly available technology’ so any fork manufacturer can contact Shimano American and hub manufacturers can contact Fox for hub dimension drawings so that they can create their own compatible designs.

The 15QR adds less than 20 grams to the F-Series chassis.

The 15QR adds less than 20 grams to the F-Series chassis.

Photo: Matt Pacocha

“I’m sure a question on everyone’s mind is ‘why the heck are you guys trying to do something different and: Why not 20mm or what’s wrong with an open dropout,’” said Mario Galasso, the VP of Fox’s Bicycle Division, while presenting the 2009 product line.

“20mm was spawned out of the need for downhill and open dropouts are an 80-year-old road bike thing. Trail bikes are so much more capable now. Cross-country bikes, at 4-inches [of travel], are more capable than downhill bikes used to be and we wanted to give those things something that’s appropriate for the usage. The easy thing would have been to just do a 20mm thru-axle, but why add the weight of the heavier bearing and a heavier axle and casting to support it all when there might be another solution.”

Fox will offer a remote lockout on one model with three travel options.

Fox will offer a remote lockout on one model with three travel options.

Photo: Matt Pacocha

Fox believes for trail and heavy-duty cross-country bikes, even race bikes, 15QR, or E-Thru as it’s billed by Shimano, is the answer.

For a full report on Fox’s 2009 line see VeloNews, Issue 8 due out May 6th.

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