Fox introduced their 34mm chassis to stiffen up longer legged 29er forks last year, but it’s now available in Float fixed travel and TALAS travel adjust versions in 26er (and 650b) forms. But who or what are these stiffer but significantly heavier forks for?
Workshop rig testing and swapping forks between runs shows the upsized chassis is a much stiffer, more feedback-rich fork overall than Fox’s 32, and more rigid than the best 32mm forks in terms of front-back and sideways flex.
In fact, while a much longer negative air spring means good sensitivity over small stuff, the structural stiffness makes it less comfortable and arm-pump prone than the 32 chassis. While fork offset is similar to the 32, the 160mm stroke (it can be dropped to 150mm) tips the head back and raises the bottom bracket – we had to fit a shorter eye to eye shock to compensate.