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Fork engineering question(4 posts)

Fork engineering questionDrEvilAdam
Aug 15, 2001 5:30 PM
I have a question about the engineering of carbon forks. What are the advantages to the straight-bladed fork designs as opposed to those of forks that have a rake? My current Trek fork has a rake, whereas I'm looking at a Colnago that uses a straight fork. Are straight forks angled more forward to put the center of the front wheel at the same point in space relative to the frame as they would be with in a raked fork?

Thanks!
re: Fork engineering questionRusty Coggs
Aug 15, 2001 8:06 PM
All forks have a rake. A straight fork may have the same rake as a curved one. All else being equal,curved or straight makes no difference in handling. It's just a difference in 'look'.Forks with the same rake,on the same frame will put the wheel contact point at the same place.
re: Fork engineering questionthom
Aug 15, 2001 9:26 PM
I agree with rusty. But it is true that the dynamic characteristics of the two could be different because of the different shapes. The vibration shapes of one fork will be different than the shapes of the other (locally or possibly global also). But, you may not be able to feel the difference and ride quality probably will be the same.
re: Fork engineering questionSamDC
Aug 16, 2001 9:44 AM
I always thought straight-bladed forks cornered better??? As for rake, it is the distance (or offset) from the center-line of the steering tube to the center of the fork drop-outs. In other words, say you drew an imaginary line down the center of the steerer tube. Then make a copy of that line and move it until it reaches the center of the drop-outs (where you put the front hub into the fork). The perpendicular distance between those lines is your rake. The rake is important in respect to wheel-base. If you have a small frame then one should have a larger rake. See www.sheldonbrown.com for more info on RAKE and, more importantly, TRAIL. Good luck with your new bike!