Ever since I tried for a year to replace my rear shock, this being on a 2016 Trek Top Fuel 9.8, I realized what a nightmare it can be. The model year 2016 was the only one that had the Monarch and Sid XX system using Xloc – the lockouts on both shocks are hydraulic, just like the Reverb dropper post. So two hydraulic cables go to each shock. Honestly, I love how that works. The large button onder my left grip triggers the lockouts with very little, smooth effort.
But I wanted to try a new fork and that’s where I quickly realized I was in for a treat. Rockshox no longer makes any rear shock that fits this bike. Fox makes one, or did as of last year, but the lockout portion is pointing 180 degrees the wrong way, and while I tried to reverse it myself, I screwed it up. Fox says I should send the shock to them and for a fee they’d reverse it. But that leaves me with a 2 position lockout, while the forks can be 3. So which remote do I use? Oh, the bike I have uses a 51mm fork offset, which, as usual, has all but been eliminated from history. Now it’s 44mm. Rockshox doesn’t make those anymore, and with the new Fox gold forks, they might not either, I didn’t bother checking.
So why all these words about my bike when the post title is about the Scott Spark just announced today? It’s because of the shock used on this bike. The Rock Shox flight attendant, with a custom frame change to fit it all in there. On those bikes there’s a door that covers the whole shock. Nice enough idea. But you need to open that door and remove the battery to charge it. How often can you remove that door before it breaks? I dunno, never had one. But the worst part is that shock. You better buy another one and leave it in the box. Because if you have any intention of keeping that bike more than a few years, there’s a very real chance they will change that rear shock, and discontinue the old one. Keeping a $14,000 bike for 10 years hardly seems like a dumb idea. My bike no longer had a replacement shock and fork from Rockshox within 5 years. I have to hack something together myself, with no help from anyone.
What must a Rockshox SID Deluxe with flight attendant cost retail? I shudder to think. I’m guessing at least $1000, if not more. So while I appreciate the efforts made to push our equipment into the future, the future of expensive, probably to be discontinued shocks does not float my boat. At all. And it’s no different than with the Trek Supercaliber, first Fox with their custom shock only made for that one frame, and now Gen 2 with Rockshox making a special shock, and neither work with the other. You are screwed if those shocks aren’t sold anymore.
I’m sticking with a frame that has a regular shock, one that can be sourced from at least 2 manufacturers if not more. Manitou, Rockshox, Fox. At least then I can know my frame will last for decades.
Beautiful bikes though. And I bet it rides like a dream.