Three Steel Forks

Rivendell Sam Hillborne

Surly Long Haul Trucker

Independent Fabrication Club Racer

Three different aesthetics in steel forks, from traditional to modern. Which do you prefer?

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10 Responses to “Three Steel Forks”

  • s0fa says:

    Unrelated but those honjo fenders have a whole lot of coverage forward of the fork.

  • Andrew says:

    It really does depend on the style of bike, but of those, I like the straight-blade fork the most. I have a steel Jamis Coda Sport, and it’s similar – it just looks a lot more aggressive.

    In fact, I’d say in general my hierarchy goes from newest to oldest looking. The gentle curve on the Surly is nice as well, but I’ve never really gone for the obviously raked look on older bikes. At least not without any accent on the fork (chromed drop-outs are gorgeous).

    Granted, I’m liable to change my tune when I finally put together my old Legnano for the spring, but there’s a long winter between then and now.

    (part of my bias may be in my hatred of cantilevers, as well – if it’s not a cheap, powerful, easily adjustable V-brake, it might as well be a disc…)

  • Sami says:

    I admit the Rivendell fork is most appealing, but it’s not really fair to compare the venerable LHT to the doubly expensive Sam Hillborne. Anywhoo, Hurrah for Grant Peterson for keeping pretty lugs alive!

    On another note, I would like to say that cantilevers are really not that difficult to adjust and that they serve a great purpose because not only do they allow for more fender clearance, but they also work well with road levers (as opposed to v-brakes).

    Why not put brakes to a vote, Alan?

  • Lovely Bicycle! says:

    I am not a fan of the unicrown forks like the one on the IF bike. Granted, they are more fitting on some bikes than others, but if given a choice I would go for a different style any day.

  • Larey says:

    You left off “All of the above”, which would be my choice.

  • Nick says:

    My vote is for the Rivendell though the Surly I also like. The straight fork on the IF bike bothers me: I think it’s the way the fork moves away from the headset at a different angle from the headtube. The two curved forks begin in a straight line and then curve gently forward. This is my vote.

    Like Sami and Lovely Bicycle! say, the Rivendell also benefits from its beautiful fork crown.

  • Kent says:

    I voted for the Rivendell, but the Surly is only slight less attractive to me. I guess you get more ‘pretty’ per dollar with Surly just as you get more bike per dollar. No insult to Riv intended, I voted for them off-line too; after owning two Surlys I’ve just put in an order for a Bombadil.
    The IF is also a very nice looking fork and the same price I’d take it over the Surly any day. ;) However, at the same price/quality level I’d take a curved fork over a straight every day for both aesthetic and functional reasons.

  • doug says:

    The curve of the Rivendell is to die for. However, I’m not a fan of very ornate lugs. A simple cutout like the Surly would be my preference.

    I absolutely hate straight blade forks. What, exactly, is the advantage, other than ease of construction?

  • Doug says:

    The Rivendell has the right bend to absorb some road shock. I still prefer my old Bridgestone MB-1.

  • Charlie says:

    The survey asks about aesthetics, but curved forks really do absorb shock better!

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