Friday, 19 April 2013

55RC3 long term

I have been using the 55RC3 Ti fork now for a few years and I thought I would share my experience of using this product on a long term basis.

My fork is a 2011 160mm 'purple' edition, before this model I had the 2010 version and the only reason for the upgrade was because I could!

I first tested the RC3 at the Marzocchi 2010 press launch in Lake Garda, June 2009. I had the fork fitted to a Corsair, bike was brilliant, the downhills were just crazy...

Marzocchi press launch, Lake Garda 200
After the Garda 'experience' I got hold of a purple 55 for myself, fitted it to a Labyrinth demo frame and headed of on a bike trip to the Pass Portes and Les duex Aples (2010). The performance of the fork just blew me away, previously I had the 55ATA (not so good...) and a Z1RC2 (wish I kept this one). Set up wise I was using a very low speed compression bias. Alpine riding is all about the front end, your always pointing down, all of your weight is on the fork, your braking and there are rocks everywhere.  Low speed damping keeps the fork propped up and ready for the next obstacle, and in the Alpes the next obstacle will be soon!

Pass Portes 2010 - Les Gets
In Chatel we hooked up with a Marzocchi pal, who showed us a trick to up the performance further still. Read here for the foam ring trick.

The following years (2011) cycling trip was to Suisse Normande, the style of riding here is more enduro with a good mix of climbing as well as descents. The fork stayed in the Alpine set up and ate everything I could throw at it. Not only is the 55 a capable DH fork but you can all-day XC on it also....

next stop is the bottom of the gorge! 

2012 road trip was back to the Pass Portes, the 55RC3 is the default for this type of environment. 

Pass Portes 2012 - Les Gets
2012 and all our riding group are now running on RC3's.... Four of them are even purple!
55 team Suisse Normande 2012
Marzocchi's concept of open oil bath, coil spring and downhill damper is inspired, all of these forks are running and feeling box fresh, even after some serious abuse all without a single service. I cant think of many products that offer this type reliability and consistent high level of performance? Of course this concept was now new, you can trace it back to the 1997 Z1 bomber....

My current 55 is now 2 1/2 years old and I am thinking about swapping out to the 2013 model, the newer model gets the V2 piston and EVO valve out of the 888. My sponsored guys that are using it are reporting that the performance has been upped again! Or maybe I could just use the one I got for another year... including a gravity enduro race and another French trip... 

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