Downhill Mountain Bikes – Suspension

Downhill mountain bikes are specialized full suspension bicycles, meaning they have suspensions in both the front and rear. The suspension system acts as a counterforce to smooth out sudden changes in elevation like those found on downhill trails. It maintains contact with the ground which results in better traction. Not only does this add to high speed stability, but it makes handling much easier over rough terrain, providing an enjoyable rider experience.

Full suspension bicycles first appeared in the early 90′s and have evolved since then with improvements in weight, travel, and feel. The front suspension, or fork, is composed to two stanchions, typically each containing a shock, but one sided designs have been produced. The rear suspension is composed of a single shock. There are two types of suspensions, coil systems and air systems. Air is typical, but downhill mountain bikes generally use coil systems. Usually suspensions must be tuned to both the rider and application.

The travel, or range of motion, is governed by application. Short travel bikes are used in cross country applications, and have 1-4 inches of travel. Generalized mountain bikes are medium travel, with 4-6 inches of range. Long travel bikes are reserved for downhill mountain bikes, with 7-12 inches of travel. The high slack helps to maintain stability on downhill trails, but can make it difficult to bicycle uphill.

Air ride bicycle suspension Downhill Mountain Bikes   Suspension
Air ride bicycle suspension

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