SR Suntour Durolux 2016 Mountain Bike Review

SR Suntour Durolux 2016

Reviews / Forks

SR Suntour 28,404

At A Glance

This year the Durolux from SRSuntour gets a revamp to bring it right up to date. Upping the stanchion size to 36mm shows that this fork means business, and is available in 160/170/180mm options which should do for the hardest hitting riders. The R2C2 damper is a closed cartridge system with both high and low-speed compression and rebound adjustments; this is coupled with a coil sprung negative spring to balance things out.

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Mounts for a tidy mudguard allow for an integrated solution for flying mud, and two lube ports on the rear of the lowers allow for additional lubrication of the foam wipers but can also release any air trapped in the lowers. Suntour's Quick Service Product philosophy means that servicing is simple and easy to achieve, including bleeding the damper. Rather than using a standard axle, Suntour use their own funky Q-LOC2 thru axle in 20 mm diameter.

On The Trail

I'm usually drawn to forks with fewer adjustments rather than more. I'm happy to get a setting right and then just crack on with my riding rather than spending hours knob twiddling, so when these arrived, I knew I'd have to get a bit geeky with the setup. I was instantly reassured by only five clicks on the high-speed compression damping, clear and straightforward. With compression adjustment on the top, rebound is on the bottom of the leg, and although solid metal dials, they have a small amount of play, and don't feel as solid as the rest of the fork. Once dialled in with some base settings I needed to go and find some terrain worthy of such a solid fork.

Firstly, this fork is very stiff, and with travel options, up to 180mm, it is evident they are designed to take some big hits. The 20mm axle keeps any wheel locked on tight, showing up any flex in the wheel immediately. Once rolling, the Durolux is eager to move and happy to absorb small bumps easily, although not without a bit of noise coming from the fork. They may not be the quietest, but the feel is excellent. Moving up a notch and hitting rough terrain, they stay composed and won't give away any more travel than needed but do remain supple. Running with all the volume reducers in place (these are easily removed) it required a ground shattering impact to get them up to full travel, which was ideal for my trip out to the Alps. Removing a couple of volume reducers is needed for more normal trail duty.

Throughout my time with these forks, they have done everything I would desire from a hard-hitting fork. They are super stiff and reluctant to dive under braking which gives a great feeling of confidence to attack terrain while the front of the bike stays high and composed. If I were to criticise them in any way, it would be that they could be more willing to move in the mid stroke of the fork, with the fork keen to stay high when riding more tame trails, but then these are designed to be ridden hard and fast. The harder you ride, the better they feel.

The QSP philosophy is great, as it allows regular users to service products easily and quickly. Although I didn't need to get involved with anything too complex, the lower removal is very simple, and the closed cartridge system means even a bleed is possible if you want to. The axle system is innovative, and once you have the hang of it works well and is pretty simple, but not instantly intuitive. Not having a 15mm option may be an issue to some, but with a fork of this stature, the bigger axle seems appropriate.

At 2360g, this is no featherweight, and there are other comparable forks with less weight, but for the cost (£549.99) this is an incredible package at nearly half the price of some other fork options on the market.

Overall

The Durolux may be slightly heavy, and make a few noises while it works, but it offers fantastic value and excellent performance. They have taken me safely through the season of racing so far and continue to perform excellently. In a world of ridiculous prices, it's great to see a well-designed product that works so well, at a great price point.

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This review was in Issue 43 of IMB.

For more information visit SR Suntour

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By Ewen Turner
Ewen Turner is a self-confessed bike geek from Kendal in the Lake District of England. He runs a coaching and guiding business up there and has a plethora of knowledge about bikes with an analytical approach to testing. His passion for bicycles is infectious, and he’s a ripper on the trails who prefers to fit his working life around his time on the bike.

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