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On the eve of the 2011 Fox Racing Shox product releases, a bunch of us media types were given a tour of the shock and for production facility in Watsonville, CA. Suspension products for bikes,off-road trucks, motos and snowmobiles are fabricated and assembled here in a very clean and efficient environment.  Here's a little photo/video highlight presentation from an hour in the Fox factory. I tried to sneak into the forbidden zones and get you the spy shots, but they had Cam McCaul and Adam Craig around for security purposes.

We'll start with video since you all like to watch TV. Inside you'll see the 10-foot tall dyno running the "Maribor Test" which is data from a 2-minute run down Maribor's World Cup track by Justin Leov. Apparently they run that 2 minute test 200 times in a row on one leg/damper during testing...SHEESH! You'll also see some robotic action, an explanation of the UV dye in the fork oil to detect leaks and some other quick clips.
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PhotoIf you don't have one of these visitor tags, they make you work.

PhotoScott "Pappy" Papola approves of the 2011 Fox 36 Float with Kashima stanchions! Adam Craig BGP.

PhotoThis rig is rad. Fox keeps soil samples (yes, the actual dirt) from different venues and does seal testing on different suspension products with the actual dirt grinding away at the shock. I like it.

PhotoLegend: Gary Yokota getting ready to press play on the mega-super dyno for the Maribor Test. (it's in the video above)

PhotoThe entire production process is broken into "cells" where the most efficient use of time, labor and resources are refined on a weekly basis. The building's infrastructure is very strategic as well. The production setting can be re-configured extremely quickly, depending on what season and product is in demand. Air and electric sources can be easily disconnected so machines and work stations can change as production deems necessary. Trick!

PhotoSome new Fox 36 goodies in the QC area.

PhotoCam McCaul was on the tour. He saw this Kashima coated 831 and flipped. He still didn't get to take it.

PhotoHistorical drawings circa 1981. No, wait. I snuck into the design room and took this spyshot.

PhotoIt's not an exciting picture until you realize just how many parts are needed to build all of the suspension gadgest you love. Then you realize someone has to develop the process to keep track of all these little parts. This is just one station.

PhotoShocks in the build queue. The assembly process is pretty incredible with many stages of quality control and accuracy testing taking place the entire way through.

PhotoPappy enjoyin' some "scrimps" after the tour at Jalisco's while trying to max out his photo contingency deals. Remember, I get half.

Thanks to for a great tour!

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