Rockshox Reba RLT mods for 29+…

Big green and rigid...

Big green and rigid…

I’ve been meaning to modify my RS REBA RLT for a while now, but kept getting side tracked. Finally Saturday after a solid morning ride and a nap I had the late afternoon free to tackle the project.



The Knard on RH jams up nicely in the stock fork. Won’t turn.

Gentle sanding...

Gentle sanding…

So I hit it with the dremel and sipped some beer while creating the clearance I needed.

Now she rolls...

Now she rolls…

Took about 1 beer’s worth of gentle grinding to get the clearance I was after and the tire turning freely.

Still solid...

Still solid…

Looks gnarly, but there is lots of material left and this mod has been done many times with zero reported failures so I think it’s pretty safe.

Clearance on top...

Clearance on top…

There is clearance now for all the conditions I ride it. We don’t get really sticky clay type mud in my part of BC and that’s the only situation I think this fork would be a problem with.

Clearance on the sides...

Clearance on the sides…

Lots of side wall clearance. Before mod sidewall would rub fork.

Next up tubeless Knards...

Next up tubeless Knards…

All in all a pretty minor quick mod that lets me use a “normal” 29er fork with my Krampus and not have to go Lefty and/or run some weird front hub.

I’m going to setup my Knard/RH wheels split tube tubeless next and see how the wheel fits before I mask off the Reba and paint it. The tubeless tire might change size and need a slight tweak to fit well.

BTW – the fork will go on my Krampus. I just left it on that 29er to make it easier to work on until I was ready for an install on the Big K. The puny rear tire is a Schwalbe Racing Ralph 2.4″ on a Stan’s Flow rim.

21 thoughts on “Rockshox Reba RLT mods for 29+…

  1. Hey Vik. Your comments (and loads of others) convinced me to buy a Krampus rather than push my LHT to its limit on the tour divide. I am about to convert it to tubeless, but was thinking of going the gorilla tape and Stan’s valve way.

    What do you see as the big advantage / disadvantage of the split tube method?

    I feel like it wouldn’t be enough weight savings? But it may be easier to convert…

    • Split tube is dead easy and reliable and fairly easy to reseat should you have to deal with that out on the trail. Knards are not made for tubeless so having the rubber tube meet up with the tire’s beads allows them to seat well.

      I am using a skinny MTB tube so compared to a fat 29+ tube there is still some weight savings.

      Nothing wrong with doing it the way you suggest. Both are viable options.

  2. BTW – post a comment when you get the tubeless setup done and let me know how it worked for you.

    Always good to get more data points. 🙂

  3. Looking good. Now all you need is a Thomson dropper, when they come out.

    • @Casey – no need for a dropper on a bikepacking bike….the seatbag would get eaten by the rear tire. For trail riding I have a FS bike.

      • Man, you should try not running a seatbag, just once. I love not having that weight swinging around back there. Especially on technical stuff. I think I’ve converted to eurostyle bikepacking… 😉

      • What is Eurostyle bikepacking??

      • Traditionally, it’s using a big backpack and no bikepacking bags.

        I’ve been running no seatbag, and no handlebar bag. Just a toptube bag, framebag, a couple of mountain feedbags and a 32L- 35L backpack.

  4. I find that you can move the bike around so much better with this kind of setup, on singletrack

    • Makes sense. I keep my food on my back in a pack so my bar and seat bags are light [sleeping bag up front and tent/sleeping pad in back]. I find that makes for a good balance of weight for my riding.

      The bikepacking I’m doing in BC isn’t full on techy…at least by BC trail riding standards so I don’t feel held back, but I can see the benefit if you are doing non-stop tech to carrying most of the weight on the back.

  5. Have you ridden this on the Krampus yet? Scott at porcelain rocket seems to think it’d come with a few issues… Something about tires hitting when bottomed out?

    • Hi Jeff,

      I haven’t installed it on my Krampus yet. Too busy riding!

      Here is a photo with all the air out of my Reba and a Knard in it:

      There is no bottoming out issues. I put all my weight on the fork to compress any bumpers that might be in there.

      I heard of anyone having tire to frame contact on a Krampus with a suspension fork.

      If you have the fork you are thinking about using already you can install the wheel tire without modding it and taking the air out to test everything is good before you commit.

      I’ll try and get off my ass and get the Reba installed on the Krampus this weekend and post something.

  6. How is this still working for you? I was thinking of putting one of my Reba’s on a fat bike with the Knard/Rabbit hole combo.

    One concern many had was tire deformation and then rubbing on the fork.


    • Damn.. Sorry to ask a question which is already answered above. Looking foward to impressions/thoughts if and when you get the Reba mounted up on the Krampus.


  7. @JeffB – did another test this weekend with the Reba RLT.

    Crappy photo here [hard to take photo and compress fork!]:

    Tire rolls freely even at this extreme level of compression.

    With air out of both pos and neg spring I can compress the fork until the stanchion bottoms out and I can stop the tire.

    However, I don’t think this is possible in real life with the air spring ramping up.

  8. Vik, you have inspired me to modify a fork! I bought a RockShox XC30 for like 120 bucks , I put i upside down in a vise and filed it by hand. It’s turning out great. I haven’t completed it yet but It is looking good. Thanks for having cajones.

  9. How is the Reba working out; is it a Boost or a regular Reba? I have one I may sell but please let me know if this works…jammed up at all? Mud-sticks? Any OTB? Thanks

    • This was a 2013 Reba which is 3yrs pre-Boost. No issues during testing, but I sold it later that year and have not talked to the new owner since. There is lots of material available to removed so you can tailor the clearance to your comfort level.

    • Hey Mat, I am the new owner of the Reba. It has worked out great. I live over in Port Angeles and ride wet, sloppy trails on a fairly regular basis and also do some fast downhill on gravelly forest service roads. I have not had any issues with mud, rocks, or stick jamming. There isn’t a lot of clearance, but it works fine. I do get some tire rub when I am cranking or tight fast corners, but not enough to worry about. Happy with how it has turned out. Hi Vik.

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