Crosbow Cycles

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dbigkahunna

Guest
Has anyone heard of these guys. They make a really sharp repo-racer. Kinda pricie but chingles cool. Also they make a neat retro springer.
 


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ironwarlock

Guest
ya that is a big chunk of change they want for those bikes. :D but they look sweet.
 
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DougC

Guest
Monarch forks

I ordered a pair of the forks from Crossbow Cycles.
Various notes:
...the bottom dropouts appeared at first to be way too narrow, but there's four washers on each pivot bolt and you just have to re-arrange the pieces.
...the dropouts are 1/8" thick, while the ends of the fork and springer blades are mashed flat and about 3/16" thick.
...it doesn't come with anti-spin washers or a lower bearing race. I tried the lower bearing race off the Worksman forks and that race was a bit too big (diameter) and didn't fit around the Monarch steerer tube properly. You'll need two anti-spin washers instead of just one, to go above and below the spring mount because it bends down a bit too soon and won't sit level on the upper race otherwise.
...the dropouts are cut for 5/16" axles, and the Worksman bike uses 3/8". I don't have any other non-quick-release bikes around so I don't know what most normal bikes use. There's plenty of room to cut the slots bigger, but it's one more thing to do.
...Crossbow makes a dropout with a disk-brake adapter, but there's no other easy way to attach a front brake. I wanted a drum on mine so I'll have to figure something out with this.

Also I took a picture, what I got looks a bit different cosmetically than the photo on the web site, but mechanically it is the same. I have lifted up the chromed crown cover, so that the actual fork crown is visible.
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DougC

Guest
Additional info, after one afternoon with the fork:

I'm going to get longer bolts for the lower-end.... I haven't tried riding with it but as it is, it seems to me like the nuts would loosen with the suspension traveling. The nuts are nylon-locking and I didn't have any chance to try the forks out, but I would much prefer to tighten another bolt down against the locking nut--but the original bolts aren't long enough for that, and because of other issues you can't simply put in longer bolts (they're an odd shouldered metric size).

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I don't know why it came with the dropouts set narrow, or if they intended it to be used that way. The distance between the dropouts was only about 3.5 inches. There is an older standard width, used only on lower-priced hubs that was 91mm, that is pretty close to that. All modern bikes now use 100mm for the front hubs, even the cheap bikes (the MTB/20mm thru-axle wheels might be a different width, but we don't care about them...).

The GOOD news is that it looks like the front drum brake won't be too difficult to anchor properly, with some grinding. It will be tilted a bit odd, but will work and won't require modifying the forks at all.
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npk1977

Guest
Do those kind of forks make a difference in the ride quality? Is it much smoother with the springs?
 
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DougC

Guest
Do those kind of forks make a difference in the ride quality? Is it much smoother with the springs?
Generally,,,,, sort-of.

Over small bumps they make a nice difference, but the extra pivoting linkages tends to give a vague steering feeling. This one might have a total of 1.5 inches of travel, assuming the springs don't sag just from bike/rider weight. I bought them for looks mostly.

If you want good suspended steering, there's no question--get some decent MTB telescoping forks. They're built stronger and will likely have more travel and feel much tighter.
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DougC

Guest
:???:

Sorry to report--these forks do not just drop in to any regular 26" bicycle.

First is the wheel spacing issue, mentioned earlier. I got the different bolts at the local hardware store and ordered some 1/4" wide, 5/16 ID x 7/16 OD bushings online, that the local hardware stores didn't have. I found bronze first, but steel would work too.

Second is that you need some shim material (about .018" thick, if I have measured correctly) to install the lower bearing cone. A normal 1" cruiser-bicycle steerer tube is around 1" diameter except for a short distance at the bottom that has a shoulder that is 1.006" or so diameter. The Crossbow/Monark forks don't have this shoulder, they measure about 1.03" all the way down, and the lower bearing cone wobbles on the steerer tube. You need some shim stock to fix that, but most of us don't have an assortment of shim stock just lying about. So I've got to order that too now--the only places that sell it locally don't sell small pieces ($10, mcmaster-carr), just fairly-big (~$50) rolls.
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kevbo

Guest
It's $35 bucks or so, but this Shim stock assortment has saved the day enough to earn it's keep.

By the way, the last 1" headset bearing I messed with was a light press fit onto the 1.040 shoulder on the steerer tube. (1" +1mm I guess!)

Unfortunatly, the new fork had a 1.063 (27mm) shoulder. .020 + is not a tight press fit, it is an explode the bearing cone fit.

Fortunatly, I have a lathe.

Unfortunatly it was not obvious how to remove the steerer from the fork so I could turn it down on the lathe.

Fortunately the steerer had some extra length.

So I made a long bushing that is a light press over the 1.060, then necked down to 1" ID, with a 1.040 OD shoulder at the top...made it long enough that I didn't need to cut down the steerer. So far nobody has asked about that odd spacer above the fork!

So how in the heck do you make a part with an .020 wall?

-First, make a male plug that will be a nice fit in the ID. Do this first so you can use the lathe for the plug, and don't have to unchuck and recenter the the part later. Center drill one end.

-Bore the ID of the bushing, insert the plug.

-Install the plug, and turn the OD, using the tailstock to support the part via the plug.
 
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DougC

Guest
....By the way, the last 1" headset bearing I messed with was a light press fit onto the 1.040 shoulder on the steerer tube. (1" +1mm I guess!)

Unfortunatly, the new fork had a 1.063 (27mm) shoulder. .020 + is not a tight press fit, it is an explode the bearing cone fit...
It's my understanding that on steel and aluminum forks, you're supposed to need to tap the lower cone on with a piece of tubing and a hammer. There's a special tool for the tubing sold for this.

I don't have a lathe; most people don't have a lathe. The place that made the forks probably has a lathe, but that don't help me none.

And I don't know that the measurements are exact (using some cheap plastic calipers and having only the Worksman bike on hand to compare measurements to--and noting that the Worksman uses a lot of over-thickness parts) but these style of headsets don't seem to come in different steerer tube sizes.
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Outa_Spaceman

Guest
Gosh..!
I thought I was the only person that had problems with these forks...
One extra annoying aspect of the set I have, is that the blades are incorrectly aligned which means lots of bending about and swearing...
The general finish of the forks is pretty poor but, as I intend to respray them, I really shouldn't complain...
This thread has been very useful to me, thanks chaps...!
 
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