The TALAS 180 is a superb fork, offering a buttery smooth plush ride, and incredible riding traits, along with excellent features such as the TALAS (180-140) travel adjustment, FIT R2 damper, and slippery Kashima coated stanchions. Fox has a winner with this sucker, and you can call it a Rock Star (pun intended), and it really shows the advancements in fork technology, especially in the All Mountain and Freeride realm, where the boundaries are being pushed. This fork can be ridden up and down terrain, as its more than just a shuttle or lift serviced entity.
Fox 36 Forks
For 2011 the Fox 36 has two versions, a 160 mm (All Mountain) and a 180 mm (Freeride) fork. The 36 160 comes in three flavors, the TALAS, FLOAT and VAN, specifically: the TALAS FIT RLC, FLOAT FIT RLC and the VAN RC2 (coil). The 36 180 also comes in three flavors, the TALAS, FLOAT and VAN, specifically: the FLOAT FIT RC2, TALAS FIT RC2 and VAN RC2. Every version comes in an Open Bath only version, aka the R. There was a slight change to the TALAS version, as it now uses two steps instead of three. The 160 variant is 160-120, while the 180 is 180-140. The 160 version has changed to the RLC damper in contrast to the previous years RC2 (the VAN remains the same), while the 180 is all RC2. The 180 has an elongated bushing overlap, and a below axle tube design, for an increased stiffness and lower axle-to-crown.
The Fox 36 TALAS 180 FIT RC2 fork, has 36mm stanchions, a 20QR thru axle, either 1-1/8 inch straight or 1.5 inch tapered steerer, post style disc brake mounting (directly accepts 203 mm rotor only), two-position TALAS (180-140), FIT RC2 damper, Kashima coated stanchions, Black Diamond color scheme, and adjustments for TALAS, low-speed and high-speed compression, air spring pressure and rebound.
The Travel Adjustable Linear Air Spring system (aka TALAS) on the 36, has two positions, allowing the fork to be dropped from its fully open 180 mm (7.1 inches) down to 140 mm (5.5 inches), using the knob on the top of the right fork leg. The travel adjustment gives the fork good versatility, offering climbing efficiency, or copious plushness and full travel. A pop up cap for the air pressure resides in the middle of the TALAS lever, and turning it to the lower setting causes it to raise.
The FIT RC2 inverted damper is located within the right fork leg, and offers a wide range of low-speed and high-speed compression, and rebound adjustments (RC2=Rebound Compressionx2). The rebound knob is located on the bottom, and is encased with a protective cap, while the other adjustments are residing on top. The FIT (Fox Isolated Technology) system uses a damper cartridge, and the suspension fluid is isolated, so that it’s sealed away from air and crud, so that fluid aeration and contamination won’t occur, which causes damper performance degradation. The new FIT damper design reduces oil volume, which helps lighten the fork. The cartridge uses a rubber bladder, which provides low friction, and allows fluid expansion as the suspension system’s temperature fluctuates (heats up) during usage, creating a linear damping throughout the travel stroke.
The Kashima Coat technology has been used for years across the motorcycle and automotive industries, and Fox has teamed up with the Miyaki Company of Japan, to add this slippery coating to their forks. The hard anodized aluminum tubes are sent to Japan, where they add molybdenum disulfide via an induction process that deposits the material into pores of the anodized surface at 70 billion pores per cm². The MoS₂ adds better lubrication characteristics, higher hardness and abrasion resistance (durability), and a significant decrease in friction (stiction-free).