What Difference Does Fork Offset Make?

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Joe tackles the fork offset debate and doesn’t reckon that there’s much in it.

Fork offset is a pretty hot topic, but personally, I think it’s one driven mostly by marketing.

Firstly, the simple part, fork offset only has a small impact on frame geometry; 1.3mm in BB height, 0.2° in head angle. So running either short or long offset on your Starling frame isn’t really an issue.

What is better, short or long? To be honest, I have ridden both short and long offsets, and personally can’t tell the difference.

There is a slight difference in ‘feel’, but I couldn’t put into words what that is. These findings agree with a lot of journalists and other industry types who I have talked to about the subject.

Some people also believe that on single crown forks, the deflection when riding dominates over any small difference in offset.

However, popular marketing-led wisdom tells us that shorter is better, so maybe that’s a good place to start?

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Joe Mcewan

Ex-aerospace engineer Joe Mcewan is the founder and chief engineer of Starling Cycles. Passionate, outspoken and fond of a cuppa and a debate, Joe loves to challenge the established thinking of the industry.

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