Lauf Carbonara Fork 500 mile* review

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OK, is it’s not quiet 500 miles more like 483 miles but’s what’s a trip around the block between friends?

I’ve ridden it on beaches

Ridden it up and down hills

I’ve bike packed with it

I’ve jumped on it

And I’ve landed on it

I’m no pro rider or magazine reviewer so please bear with me and if you have any questions please ask and I’ll see what I can do to answer them.

Lauf’s slogan is “Absorb the ride” and they defiantly do just that, people have said things about lack of damping but as 99.999% of my riding is with the wheels on the ground I have simply not found this a problem whatsoever. They offer up to 60mm of travel to “absorb the ride”

I’ve ridden over sea rounded bricks on the edge of a local beach on these forks and on another fat bike with Bluto’s and I felt the Lauf forks handled these better than the Bluto’s. They seamed to rebound and react much quicker over the constant barrage of bumps and pounding over the conventional forks.

I’ve also being lucky enough to have ridden the 29er Lauf Trail Racer for 725 miles as well

I weigh in at 83kg
The Trail Racer is the – Regular (over 65kg riders)
The Carbonara is the – Light (under 85kg riders)
And both of these forks are fitted to Travers titanium bikes, the 29er Rudy and the all new Bat Fastard 5″ fat bike.

One thing to remember is that on each side of the fork/wheel is a “leaf” (Lauf) spring and each side moves independently of each other, whereas a rigid fork doesn’t move at all and a normal suspension fork with it’s twin chambers connected together in parallel tubes ensure that both sides do go up and down exactly at the same time together.
So, it does take some getting used to when you are climbing aggressively out of the saddle and you look down at your front wheel rocking from side to side in the fork, it’s as though your wheel is trying to stay vertical while your bike rocks from side to side.
But once you get over this they are an amazingly comfortable ride and super lightweight.

Given my weight it surprised me that the Carbonara’s are more rigid than the Trail Racers, when fully laidened with bike packing gear (57lbs bike & kit) I was way over their suggested 85kg limit for the Carbonara’s I found that they rode softer and similar to the Trail Racers, but I guess that the Fat Forks do need to be more rigid because of the weight of the heavier and much wider fat wheels and tyres.

More info here

They are available from Lauf direct, Travers Bike on full builds or any bike shop that deals with Velobrands their UK distributor.

On One rigid carbon fork – 652g
On One rigid steel fork – 1300g
Salsa Enabler fork – 1176 g
Rock Shox Bluto – 1796g
Lauf Carbonara – 1100g

So, if you have the money and you want to take the sting out of longer rides without the extra weight and maintenance of the Bluto fokrs the Carbonara’s are a very viable option

In addition has just posted their thoughts on riding the Lauf


2 thoughts on “Lauf Carbonara Fork 500 mile* review

    Ben Grass said:
    April 26, 2016 at 7:16 pm

    Thanks for the review! Just about to build up a custom Waltworks 29+ for the great divide and went with the carbonara for all of the washboard and chronic hand/forearm pain from typing too much. We went with the light version, which I was a little nervous about. I am 75kg. I was surprised at how stiff and progressive the fork feels just pressing on it prior to install. Based on your experience, it sounds like I should be fine even with loaded touring. Seems like the lack of rebound would be more of an issue with a heavier spring as well.


    traversbikes said:
    June 17, 2016 at 11:28 am

    Reblogged this on traversbikes.


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