As Marzocchi revamps their current product line, it seems there has been push from consumers that support Marzocchi to offer a coil fork. Especially, after the Marzocchi Wade Simmons video came out about the rear coil, a coil fork to pair with the shock would make a whole lot of sense.
Now, we get a new fork option: the Marzocchi Bomber Z1 Coil Fork to pair with the rear coil shock from Marzocchi. Simplicity is the name of the game for this fork and with not much to adjust, it’s clearly aimed at the “set it and forget it” type of rider.
Along with the Z1 Coil Fork, there is also a Marzocchi Z1 Coil conversion kit so you can make your current Marzocchi Z1 Air fork into a coil with just the conversion kit and spring weight of your choice. One of the highlights of this fork is the Air Assist Chamber that helps add progressivity as well as control harsh bottom outs. Also, you can change the travel in 10mm increments with the use of spacers that are included and there is a noise management system to help keep the coil spring from making contact with the inside of the fork creating noise, as some of you might remember with old coil forks.
At $749, the value of this fork makes it an amazing upgrade option to get more travel or better control on your bike.
The chassis for the Bomber Z1 coil remains the same as the Air versions, with 36mm stanchions, and the classic “M” arch on the lowers. This helps create a very stiff fork that can handle the biggest and hardest hits without any flex or loss of confidence. The Z1 can be run in travel from 150-170mm in 29” and 160-180mm in 27.5” with a boost 15 x 110mm axle spacing.
All forks are being shipped with a Medium spring (check the spring chart below for more info) but can be swapped to a Soft, Firm or X-Firm spring for $45.
Along with the spring side, you have the damper side that rocks the same Grip damper that provides consistent dampening and rebound that you have come to expect from the Fox Grip Damper. A few other specs are the tapered steerer tube, 37mm offset for 27.5 and 44mm & 51mm offset for 29”, and it is available in Matte Black or Gloss Red. The fork retails for $749 and springs are $45 if you need to change the stock medium spring that comes in the fork.
Marzocchi is also offering a coil conversion kit that can be used to change your current Marzocchi Z1 Air fork into a coil. The Coil Conversion kit costs $130 for the kit and then you will need to buy the spring needed for your riding weight for $45. This conversion kit will also be compatible with Fox 36 RHYTHM forks only, NOT compatible with any Fox 36 Performance, Performance Elite or Factory versions of the forks.
Another thing to note is that once you convert your fork into a Coil from air fork, you cannot then convert it back to air, once coil, always coil. This is because of the way that the spring makes contact with the inside of the fork, it leaves very small marks that are just enough to compromise the seal that is needed for the air spring to slide up and down while still separating the positive and negative air chambers.
We were able to get a little bit of riding on the Marzocchi Bomber Z1 Coil to get some first impressions on the fork, and well, it’s a coil fork. I highly suggest you try a coil fork on your bike, it really does have a completely different feel on the trail when compared to an air fork. The most noticeable difference is the small bump compliance and the traction the coil fork offers over an air fork. The Z1 is no different and right away you can feel how well the fork tracks and performs over rough terrain. It certainly feels different and in my opinion always feels so good right off the bat when switching from an air fork. The trail gets smoother, small to medium hits take less of a toll on your hands and arms and the arm pump fatigue is reduced as well. I was also able to notice how the stiff chassis coupled with the off the top suppleness of the coil spring felt really stable. There was no deflection, the fork held its line well and the coil ate up all the rocks, bumps and medium hits.
The “Air-Assist” or “captured air chamber” also helps with adding progressivity and controls bottom outs on big hits. While I haven’t ridden the fork yet on some of the steeper more DH worthy trails around here, on our normal test loop I didn’t have any harsh bottom outs and felt like the fork has a decent amount of progression, it was easy enough to keep control over some bigger hits, drops and jumps. I ended up using about 155-160mm of our 170mm fork and I would say for our test loop that is about normal for this travel fork and should work great when I get to ride the local DH trails.
The Marzocchi Bomber Z1 Coil is a great value fork aimed at the everyday rider who just wants to grab the bike and ride without checking air pressures and all that. At just $749 I don’t think there is another fork on the market right now that can offer this level of performance and adjustment for this price. It really is an impressive package you get with the Marzocchi Z1 Coil. You can also now convert your Marzocchi Z1 Air or Fox 36 Rhythm into a coil with the conversion kit at $130, a spring at $45 or $175 for both. With the amazing small bump compliance of coil suspension, the stiff chassis of the Marzocchi Z1, and the dampening control of the Grip damper, we are stoked to see a killer fork at a lower price than the competition.