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The winningest fork in cross-country racing just got an overhaul for 2017. With trail bikes now relying on the Pike and Revelation forks, RockShox took the opportunity to bring the SID back to its XC racing roots, optimizing the fork around 100mm of travel and dropping weight in every way possible. They've also worked in a new Charger damper design that brings additional control to the trail.

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Highlights

  • XC racing focus
  • Weights starting at 1,366g (3.01-pounds), close to 100g (3.5-ounces) lighter than previous SID
  • Dedicated 100mm (3.9-inch) travel chassis, damper, and modified Solo Air spring
  • All new Charger damper with "open" and "lock" settings
  • Shorter and lighter upper tubes and air shafts
  • Knocked out magnesium dropouts
  • Torque Cap and standard end cap compatible
  • 15x100 and Boost 15x110mm axles
  • Tool-free brake hose guide
  • New control knobs with easy to twist lockout
  • Lower profile air cap compatible with cassette tool
  • All models but SID XX are OneLoc remote compatible (XX uses XLoc hydraulic remote)
  • Maxle Ultimate comes standard (Maxle Stealth on OEM models)

Dropping Precious Grams

Did you know SID stands for Superlight Integrated Design? True to its name, the World Cup model will retain an integrated carbon crown and steerer, which features a slightly lighter layup for 2017.

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All models benefit from the move to 100mm of travel thanks to shorter upper tubes, shorter damper tubes, etc, which all help reduce the overall weight. RockShox also pulled material out of the magnesium dropouts and by thinning the lower walls. Thanks to Torque Cap compatibility (which provide a larger interface between the hub and fork) and the fact that it's easier to hit stiffness requirements with less travel, the fork doesn't compromise in the stiffness department.

While it isn't a weight savings measure, the new brake guide is pretty slick.

Modified Solo Air Spring

The new Solo Air spring uses a more linear spring curve to suit a wider range of rider weights, from kids to clydesdales. The use of Bottomless Tokens can add bottom-out support for larger riders, and a Jounce bottom-out bumper similar to the one used in the RS-1 adds a bottomless feel. The air spring also has updated flangeless seals made from a lower friction material that works better in cold temperatures.

Note the new air spring top cap. It's lighter, lower profile, and the use of a cassette tool means far less likelihood of stripped parts or busted knuckles.

All New Charger Damper

Things get really interesting inside the SID World Cup and RLC models, which both use a new version of the Charger damper first made popular by the successful Pike fork. Those familiar with existing Charger dampers will notice a new hourglass bladder shape, which was needed to allow sufficient expansion room inside the relatively narrow 32mm diameter stanchion tubes.

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The fully bled bladder cartridge damper features two-position “open” and “lock” settings. Compression can be adjusted in the “open” position to suit a wide range of riders. Turning the compression knob moves a needle insider the damper up to 6mm, providing a very broad compression spectrum.

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The “lock” position is tuned to have a strong lockout force and high blowoff threshold. When you lock the fork out, you move the middle shaft, forcing the black lockout cup down on top of the high-speed shim stack. This effectively becomes a pivot shim, making it much harder for them to flex open. It also completely seals oil flow through the main port. If pressure rises high enough when locked out it pushes oil through high-speed circuit, blowing through the shims (though they don't bend nearly as much as they do in open mode). This damped blowoff is quite different from RockShox's Motion Control damper which opens up all the way when it blows off. The fork also features an improved seal head design for better durability when ridden locked out.

Specifications

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On The Trail

We had the opportunity to try the new SID at a SRAM Trail House event in Italy during a one day test ride. We ended up adding two Bottomless Tokens to the fork halfway through our ride. The air spring is very linear, and hard charging or heavier riders will certainly want some additional bottom out control over the stock configuration. The linear air spring can be great for lighter weight riders, however, who may have had issues using the full amount of travel on previous models.

Kenny Smith and Duncan Riffle on XC bikes? You betcha. XC Ken even clipped in for the occasion.

Improved construction, bushing alignment, and quality assurance methods at the RockShox factory make the fork smoother than ever, which helps with control and traction needs. The fork felt very supple off the top and provided an adequate level of damping once dialed in several clicks. While we're certainly not incredibly well-versed in the performance of cross-country forks here at Vital, the new SID offers a level of control and stiffness that will please even a discerning trail or enduro rider who has experience with other high-end RockShox products. The lockout is very firm, and the fact that it now provides some damping when it blows off should add even more control when you're redlined and giving it everything you've got.

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We're told several of the details from the new SID could eventually make their way into other RockShox forks (like the Charger damper improvements, tool-free brake hose guide, and nifty cassette tool compatible air cap), so keep an eye out for future improvements.

Pricing and Availability

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Availability for the complete line of SID forks is slated for July, 2016. Visit www.rockshox.com for more details.

Photos by Adrian Marcoux and Brandon Turman

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