Ready to get rowdy? The all-new ZEB features 38mm stanchions and promises to not hold you back. Rockshox photo.
Ever thought your Rockshox Pike or Lyrik didn’t quite cut it for the trails you ride? Well, Rockshox just dropped their all-new heavyweight enduro fork – the ZEB, and it looks to be about as capable as a fork could ever be. Featuring 38mm stanchions (yes, that’s the same as the recently released Fox 38), a tweaked Charger 2.1 damper and DebonAir spring, and up to 190mm of travel, it looks hungry for endless enduro race stages, big mountain riding, and freeride laps. We have a ZEB ultimate in for testing, so keep an eye out for a full on-trail review soon.
The Zeb is named after Zebulon Pike, who first explored Pike’s Peak, towering above the Rockshox development offices in Colorado Springs, Colorado. For anyone unfamiliar with the peak, it is home to one of the most grueling mountain bike rides on the planet – a 7,960-foot singletrack descent known for death grip speeds, relentless rock gardens, raw corners, steep chutes, and one heck of a good time.
The ZEB Ultimate features the refined Charger 2.1 damper, a DebonAir spring and lots of stiffness in the right places. Rockshox photo.
So how does that translate to a better fork? The Zeb has been designed to be stiffer, giving the rider more control in rowdy terrain where every little thing counts. Rockshox claims that the Zeb is stiffer than the 35mm-stanchioned Lyrik, but only in certain key places, as detailed below. Torsional stiffness seemed to be the takeaway from years of rider testing.
Torsional Stiffness = 21.5% Stiffer
Side Bending Stiffness = 7% Stiffer
Fore/Aft Bending Stiffness = 2% Stiffer
Rockshox’s Charger 2.1 damper uses the same tech as found in the Lyrik, featuring high- and low-speed compression adjustment as well as rebound. The DebonAir air spring provides ultra-low friction, meaning a buttery-smooth ride that wants to stay higher in its travel. The ZEB’s air spring features a bigger negative chamber, offering a more DH-like ride, especially in the longer-travel options.
Ready to try and keep up with Sam Hill? Rockshox photo.
The Zeb is available for 27.5” and 29” wheels, and is offered in 160, 170, 180, and 190mm travel, as well as 38mm and 44mm offset options across the full range of performance options.
A clean bike is a happy bike. Max Ritter photo. There’s just something about a clean bike that makes you want to ride faster and push harder on the trail. Maybe it’s a placebo, or maybe it’s the fact that a clean bike typically means everything is working well, your drivetrain isn’t creaking, and your suspension is as active as it can be. Even if you only ride in dry conditions, cleaning your bike frequently will keep it happy and make all those expensive parts work better and last
While one of mountain biking’s most infamous races – the legendary MegaAvalanche – did not take place this summer, organizers couldn’t resist giving racers a chance to bomb down the mountainside at Alpe D’Huez in a mass-start race. Things were a little different this year, but looked just as rowdy as ever, with lots of carnage and pile-up crashes throughout the day. I mean, come on, what’s there not to like about blasting euro techno at the start line while you and 50 other riders all-out
Casey Brown rocking her new signature jersey, just one of the many women's kits we tested this summer. Scott Robb photo. The other day I was riding with a few of my girlfriends, and this woman in a really cute pair of bike shorts passed us on the trail. Intrigued, we tried guessing the brand and began naming off all the mountain bike apparel companies we knew: Wild Rye, Shredly, Dakine, Sombrio, Mons Royale, and the list kept going. I couldn’t help but laugh because five years ago we