2012 Marzocchi — first look

Weight reductions for EVO models, plus new CR line and Switch travel adjust

For 2012, Marzocchi have revamped their gravity suspension fork line to reduce weight of the top tier EVO Ti models and the cost of entry by way of a new CR line. The Italian manufacturer will also add a hydraulic travel adjust feature, called Switch TA, to the 44 and 55 trail models.

Marzocchi claims their 2012 888 RC3 EVO Titanium (US$1,649) is the lightest coil sprung — it relies on a titanium coil spring — downhill fork on the market, and within 200g of the lightest dual clamp air forks available. The advantages in regards to durability are generally universal when comparing coil sprung models to the complexity of air sprung forks.

As part of the 2012 model’s diet plan, Marzocchi offer a new IS direct mount upper crown for 2012 that will accept standard direct mount stems. “We listened closely to our pro riders on the World Cup circuit and were able to tweak our mountain bike forks to perfection with their help and feedback,” said Marzocchi.

Additional 2012 changes come internally, including a brand new compression piston that offers shim stack tuning. Marzocchi will also offer the new compression system in the 66 RC3 EVO Titanium single crown fork for $1,199.

Cutting costs, without chassis changes: the CR line

Marzocchi launched an entirely new CR cartridge for the 888 and 66 for 2012, specifically to reduce cost of entry; the new CR models use the same chassis as the top-level forks, but with a more economical cartridge damper.

“It’s a more economical cartridge design for us that still offers a nice range of compression and rebound,” John Pelino, from Marzocchi’s US sales and marketing department told BikeRadar. “It’s not as tune-able as an EVO would be; you don’t have the EVO valve that you can change the shim stacks in, it’s a more fixed-rate damper.”

Marzocchi's $799 66CR fork

A new compensation port streamlines the cartridges efficiency in terms of oil management, and reduces the overall oil volume needed from previous cartridge or open bath systems, thus reduces weight.

The CR cartridge offers externally adjustable compression and rebound, along with external preload adjustment for the spring; the CR fork models still sport top tier features including Marzocchi’s tapered, nickel-treated stanchions. The 888 CR comes complete with a titanium spring for $820, while the single crown 66 CR comes with a steel spring for $799.

For those who earn their turns: the Switch TA travel adjuster

Marzocchi’s new Switch TA hydraulic travel-adjust system will be found on the 55 and 44 fork models. The system offers a travel change of 40mm for the 55 series and 30mm for the 44 series.

“In 2001, we first developed ECC (Extension Climb Control), which we later updated with the widely successful – ETA (Extension Travel Adjust),” said Marzocchi via press-release. “With our systems we can boast to have been the first to offer climbing specific travel reduction systems that reduce axle to crown length making steep climbs much easier and more comfortable. And we haven’t been idle: for next year we bring you a hydraulic travel adjust system that works completely independent from the damping system so you can adjust the travel without compromising on your suspension. The fork is optimized to smoothly adapt to the terrain you are riding without any effort from your side.”

The 55 model's crown with left side TST Micro damper adjustments and right side Switch TA travel adjustment

The new Switch TA system works independently from air spring pressure, bettering the system’s durability, while still offering the ability to “fundamentally change the parameters of your mountain biking experience by exactly the change you expect – precise to the millimeter,” say Marzocchi.

The two-position switch is a simple on/off, and the spring rate adjusts accordingly, to match the travel position.

Marzocchi say Switch TA differs from other travel adjust systems on the market by way of its automatic re-extension without rider input. They say it’s easy to use and doesn’t compromise the quality of the suspension.

Here is a full rundown of the Marzocchi’s 2012 new gravity and trail fork features:

Gravity models:

888 RC3 EVO Titanium V.2

  • PRICE: $1,649
  • TRAVEL: 200mm
  • LEFT LEG: RC3 EVO (rebound piston V.2, low speed compression adjust, high speed compression shim stack valve, volume adjust)
  • RIGHT LEG: coil spring preload
  • SPRING: 1-side titanium
  • CASTING: magnesium with 20mm axle
  • STANCHION: 38MM nickel treatment tapered
  • STEER TUBE: aluminum
  • DISC BRAKE: 8in post mount (max disc 230mm)
  • WEIGHT: 2,990g 20mm axle included
  • OPTIONS: new IS direct upper crown

66 RC3 EVO Titanium

  • PRICE: $1,199
  • TRAVEL: 180mm
  • LEFT LEG: RC3 EVO (air preload, rebound, low speed compression adjust, high speed compression shim stack valve)
  • RIGHT LEG: coil spring preload
  • SPRING: 1-side titanium
  • CASTING: magnesium with QR20 axle
  • STANCHION: 38 MM nickel treatment tapered
  • STEER TUBE: aluminum
  • DISC BRAKE: 8in post mount (max disc 230mm)
  • WEIGHT: 2,840g QR20 axle included
  • OPTIONS: 1 1/8in, 1.5in and 1.5in tapered steer

888 CR – new IS direct upper crown

  • PRICE: $820
  • TRAVEL: 200mm
  • LEFT LEG: CR (compression, rebound adjust)
  • RIGHT LEG: coil spring preload
  • SPRING: 1-side titanium
  • CASTING: magnesium with 20mm axle
  • STANCHION: 38MM hard anodized tapered
  • STEER TUBE: aluminum
  • DISC BRAKE: 8in post mount (max disc 230mm)
  • WEIGHT: 2,990g 20mm axle included
  • OPTIONS: different spring weight

66 CR

  • PRICE: $799
  • TRAVEL: 180mm
  • LEFT LEG: CR (compression, rebound adjust)
  • RIGHT LEG: Coil spring with air preload
  • SPRING: 1-side coil
  • CASTING: magnesium with QR20 axle
  • STANCHION: 38 MM nickel treatment tapered
  • STEER TUBE: aluminum
  • DISC BRAKE: 8in post mount (max disc 230mm)
  • WEIGHT: 2,950g QR20 axle included
  • OPTIONS: 1 1/8in, 1.5in and 1.5in tapered steer

Trail models:

55 Micro Switch TA

  • PRICE: $1,099
  • TRAVEL: 160-120mm
  • LEFT LEG: TST MICRO (lock out, micro adjust compression, rebound)
  • RIGHT LEG: Switch TA
  • SPRING: AIR + negative spring
  • CASTING: magnesium with 20mm axle
  • STANCHIONS: 35mm nickel treatment tapered
  • STEER TUBE: available with aluminum 1-1/8 or 1,5” > 1-1/8” tapered
  • DISC BRAKE: 6in PM (max disc 203mm)
  • WEIGHT: 2340g QR20 axle included

55 CR Switch TA

  • PRICE: $799
  • TRAVEL: 170-130mm
  • LEFT LEG: Switch TA
  • RIGHT LEG: CR (compression, rebound)
  • SPRING: AIR + negative spring
  • CASTING: magnesium with 20mm axle
  • STANCHIONS: 35mm hard anodized Aluminum tapered
  • STEER TUBE: aluminum
  • DISC BRAKE: 6in PM (max disc 203mm)
  • WEIGHT: 2326g QR20 axle included

44 Micro Switch TA

  • PRICE: $849
  • TRAVEL: 150-120mm
  • LEFT LEG: TST MICRO (lock out, micro adjust compression, rebound)
  • RIGHT LEG: Switch TA
  • SPRING: AIR + negative spring
  • CASTING: magnesium with 15mm axle
  • STANCHION: 32mm nickel treatment tapered
  • STEER TUBE: available with aluminum 1-1/8 or 1,5” > 1-1/8” tapered
  • DISC BRAKE: 6in PM (max disc 203mm)
  • WEIGHT: 1880g QR15 axle included
  • OPTIONS: 1 1/8in, 1 1/8in-1.5in tapered steer

44 LR Switch TA

  • PRICE: $690
  • TRAVEL: 150-120mm
  • LEFT LEG: Switch TA
  • RIGHT LEG: LR (lock out, rebound)
  • SPRING: AIR + negative spring
  • CASTING: magnesium with 15mm axle
  • STANCHION: 32mm hard anodized Aluminum tapered
  • STEER TUBE: aluminum 1-1/8" only
  • DISC BRAKE: 6in PM (max disc 203mm)
  • WEIGHT: 1980g QR15 axle included

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