Suntour Axon RLD review£200.00

Startlingly light budget fork, but a bit flexible

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Suntour has been happily making suspension forks for a whole bunch of other brands for years, which means it can wheel out a lot of proven technology in its own-brand kit without it costing the earth. The shockingly light Axon race forks are a prime example.

To give you an idea just how light these forks are, they actually weigh 100g less than the RockShox Reba SL forks we took out of our test bike. In fact, there are only a handful of race forks that are lighter, and most of them are at least double or even triple the price of this one.

The suspension feel is perfectly adequate, with enough small bump suppleness to keep the tyre connected in corners without it blowing through its stroke too quickly. It takes a serious hit to push it close to full travel, but it never jars or spikes in the process, which is all we’d ask of most race forks.

The remote lockout isn’t the neatest set-up, but it works well enough and the total lock will please racers. The rebound damping is definitely on the slow side though, and even mid-weight riders were running minimal damping to keep it lively over successive hits.

Most significantly, the lightweight structure is seriously flexible. You’ll notice this when pushing into corners or trying to carve across the grain of the trail, but you’ll learn to compensate by turning a bit earlier or a bit more. More disconcerting is the twang and noticeable twist towards the disc side under braking, so we definitely wouldn’t recommend it to aggressive riders.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 44
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster tfhan the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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