I’m really honored to have been asked to write a long term use article on the Sur Ron Light Bee for WebBikeWorld! Hopefully it opens awareness about this remarkable bike to others in the two wheel space.
An alert reader let me know that I neglected to include more detailed reasons why I changed over from my OEM RST forks to Dorados. So here are my reasons. Thanks Andreas!
I decided to upgrade the forks from the Sur Ron RSTs. And the RST forks are very satisfactory for 85% of the riding I do. That entails street riding to run errands, fire roads, bike paths, OHV parks and trail riding. The only times I noticed less than excellent front end behavior was during high speed bumps or holding a line in fast bumpy corners or off camber turns. What that means is hitting something with a hard edge, or ‘high speed’ compression transferred an unwanted amount of shock to the handlebars. Think of running into and over a curb or down a long flight of stairs. Those are the types of bumps are considered ‘high speed.’ The result of changing from my RSTs to the Dorados was rather than a jarring hit through the handlebars those impacts became soft. It greatly improved holding a line in a bumpy corner without having to over correct to remain on my line. If lots of rutted surface are present for an extended run (300+ yards) arm pump no longer occurs in my forearms because of the Dorado’s high speed compression system.
If you read at the start of this post you will see that in a former life I was a racer. I had switched to Ohlins suspension on my RC51 and was overwhelmed by the difference GREAT suspension makes in a bike. In truth Ohlins suspension will spoil anyone who experiences the smoothness, the tracking through corners, etc. etc. Now paying 3-5k for racing forks is a different story when you’re competing to win. No way was I going to fork over the total cost of my Sur Ron on suspension for a bike I use for fun. I looked at Ohlins DH MTB forks….way too pricey for what I need or will ever use to their full potential. I’m pragmatic and maybe in a prior life I would have purchased them for the ‘bling factor’ alone. Ah youth can be so stupid. I should have died when I knew everything! LOL
During my research of the Dorado’s I noted that they made a major change to their forks in 2014. The pair I was purchasing was listed as being manufactured in 2014 so I checked the date on the box as well as on the fork legs. Sure enough both legs, although manufactured on different dates, were manufactured in 2014.
My experience with the Dorados is to say they are PLUSH in their ability to absorb both low and high speed bumps. Because of that traction and maintaining my line in corners greatly improved as well. Being able to set up static sag is super easy with an air sprung fork. I followed the advice of the Manitou manual for initial settings. I also noticed that a single click of either high speed/TPC (low speed) or rebound damping has a noticeable effect on handling. All in all for me it was worth the upgrade for what and how I ride.