RockShox Recon Gold RL suspension fork £400

Legendarily reliable

BikeRadar score 3.5/5

The Gold RL is the top fork in the Recon range and delivers straightforward, simple to tune and reliably consistent control in a usefully light package for the price.

Power Bulge and post-style brake mount lowers, plus a reworked crown/stanchion interface remove previous stiction/spiking issues and leave a light chassis that steers okay and stops smoothly, even in quick-release format. There’s no 15mm through-axle option though and you get the older zip tie rather than triangular clamp hose guide.

The air spring is RockShox's simpler Solo Air system. This removes the precarious pressure balancing of Dual Air and makes setup a lot simpler. It’s still sensitive enough over small stuff once bedded in. An external rebound adjuster and low speed/lockout lever cover the basic bounce control options well.

The Motion Control valving only really gets overwhelmed on larger successive strikes such as steps or long rocky descents. The internals are totally proven and come with a great reliability reputation however hard you treat them. Spare seals, pump and stickers are included with the fork too. 100mm and coil sprung options are also available.

This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.

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