New Damper, New Chassis, New Ride
Cross-country racing has become increasingly technical over the last few years, with riders demanding a higher level of performance from their bikes and suspension. The SID was originally introduced as a lightweight fork for dedicated cross-country racers but evolved over time to appeal to trail riders. Now, RockShox has gone back to the roots of the SID with a lightweight, high-performance fork for the cross-country purist. We put the SID to the test during long days in the saddle and in fast races to see if it could carry on the legacy.
Tech Info: RockShox took its time designing the new SID, borrowing some technology from its burlier trail forks. The new SID uses a Charger damper that was slimmed down and tuned specifically for cross-country riding and racing. Riders have access to a broad range of adjustments with the Charger damper, including two low-speed compression options (open and firm) and fully tunable high-speed compression and rebound.
RockShox designed the SID to run 80 or 100 millimeters of travel with a 32-millimeter chassis to save weight, along with Boost or standard 15×100 spacing options. This version of the SID has a new Solo Air spring designed with a very linear curve that makes it easier for riders to dial in the travel. One of the most notable changes to the fork is a redesigned top cap that can be accessed with a cassette tool opposed to a larger socket.
To help save weight, RockShox hollowed out the bottom of the magnesium dropouts and shortened the tubes internally. There are four versions of the SID available. Our test fork was at the high end of the line. The World Cup has a carbon fiber steer tube and a OneLoc mechanical remote lockout. Retail price is set at $1225, and the fork weighs 1380 grams.
On the Trail: For testing, RockShox sent us a limited-edition blue version of the SID World Cup that was used by its athletes at last summer’s Olympic Games in Rio. While this was a limited-edition color, RockShox offers the exact same fork in three other colors. Out of the box, the SID feels impressively light. We bolted the fork to our Pivot Mach 429SL test bike and noticed immediately that the high-speed compression knob is easy to reach from the handlebars should you need it. The low speed (pedaling platform control) is even easier to reach with the handlebar-mounted OneLoc remote.
The travel on the new SID feels more linear than on the previous version, so it is easier to use the full travel without it feeling “hammocky.” Thanks to the air spring and ample compression adjustments, the SID offers riders plenty of adjustment range to dial in the ride. We set the sag at 20 percent and left it there for the duration of our test. For the first couple rides, we ran the SID with no Bottomless Tokens and left the high-speed compression open to get a feel for the travel and ride quality. We were surprised at how linear the fork actually felt running it wide open. After a couple of rides, we installed two Tokens and added four clicks of high-speed compression for more support off the top of the travel and a more progressive spring rate to resist bottoming on bigger hits.
During our test, we were impressed with how much adjustment the SID had and the ability to dial in every aspect of the ride quality. With the damper open, the fork was lively and boasted efficient small-bump compliance. On big hits and in technical terrain, the chassis proved to be plenty stout. It didn’t flex or cause the front tire to stray from our line.
The cross-country-specific tune on the Charger damper made the fork incredibly firm when switched into the firm position. There is a blow-off built into the damper, but it does take a fairly heavy hit to engage. With the SID in the firm setting, our test riders were able to fly up steep climbs and pedal hard out of the saddle with no unwanted bobbing.
The newest version of the SID delivers plenty of performance and adjustments that are remarkably user-friendly. RockShox has been successful in offering some dedication XC components and drivetrains and the new SID is right on par. Whether you’re looking for something to help win your local XC race series or want a lightweight fork that can handle technical terrain, the SID is up to the task.
• Rides like a burly trail fork
• Wide range of adjustment
• OneLoc remote doesn’t feel crisp