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What Does it Mean to Lock Out Your Bike's Front Suspension?

Welcome, everyone. Peter Kaltreider with Sixthreezero. Something you've always wanted to know. What does it mean to lock out your front suspension? Let's find out.

Okay. So this bike has a front suspension, meaning it has a suspension front fork right here. So instead of just being a regular, just a rigid one-piece fork, like you see in more conventional bikes or like most road bikes, about maybe 30 years or maybe almost 40 years ago, they started to come up with the suspension, just like you have on a motorcycle. So the front fork has suspension, meaning that it can go up and down.

Let's see if I can demonstrate that for you a little bit. So see how we can bend like this. And it takes the shocks from the road and absorbs the shocks for you, just like your car does or a motorcycle does, or nowadays basically any mountain bike and even some road bikes.

One feature that you'll find on a lot of bikes is a lockout feature. We'll do a closeup of this here in a little bit, but what this does is, I can turn the lockout feature like this. You can even do it while you're riding if you feel comfortable doing that, and it will lock out the suspension. So I'll go over here so I don't block you. And then if I apply the front brake and show you, you can see the fork does not give in and compress to take out the shocks.

The reasons why you'd want to do this is, first of all, if you have it in suspension mode and you're able to take the shocks like that, it means you can ride on bumpier terrain, and then it'll feel like a smoother ride. It will cushion your body more. So a lot of people like that from a comfort aspect and also for a control aspect, depending on how rough the terrain is. However, if you're on a smoother road, you may not want that, because you'll feel like you're kind of bouncing up and down. And also, quite frankly, that movement is caused by you propelling yourself. And so it takes energy. So if you lock out the suspension and then it can't move and it's rigid like that, it's actually more efficient. So you can go farther or faster on your bike.

This is an e-bike. So the same thing applies. It'll save more battery and it'll also save your legs if you're going on smoother. So you may want to put it into the rigid mode. It also handles differently. And once you get your bike, you can see how that is.

Some bikes, this doesn't have. This one is either full-suspension on the front there, or it's a full lockout, completely rigid. A lot of bikes, you can look around too, can be adjusted, so you can adjust how much suspension you get. So maybe if you're on really rough terrain, you can have more suspension, where there's more squish basically, or you can adjust it to where there's less. With this one, you either have it full suspension or fully rigid. It's just off or on basically. With a lot of bikes, you can modulate exactly what you want for the terrain. And that may be for more advanced riding, for instance. In this case, the suspension is mostly just for comfort, to help absorb some of the shocks of your body so don't have it.

Peter Kaltreider:

Now, I'll have Nate come up here and we'll show you exactly what we mean by locking it out. It's your very simple operation. Like I said, many people actually do it while they're riding, but obviously, please don't do that if you're not comfortable with it.

So here it is. We just have a little lever right here. And it's either in an open or basically unlocked, or closed or locked position. Right now, it's in the open position. And you can even see in this particular one, there's a window that has a little green. Can you show that, Nate? There's green right in that window, showing that we're in suspension mode. And then all I have to do to lock it out, it says to lock it and there's an arrow. We're just going to turn it clockwise. The window turns red and now the forks are rigid. So again, the ride will be a little bit bumpier, but we'll be more efficient. Also, have a different feel. You may like the feel better on certain roads.

Generally, if it's a pretty smooth road, you may just want to leave it locked out. But honestly, if even little bumps are bothering you, put in suspension and let that absorb the shocks for you. That's all there is to it.

I truly hope that that was helpful for you. If you liked it, please do like it and hit subscribe. It helps grow our channel. And if you need any help at all, please contact us. You can call us at (301) 982-2877, or email us at Remember, Sixthreezero is spelled out S-I-X-T-H-R-E-E-Z-E-R-O. The Thanks.


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