I replaced a White Brothers Carbon Snowpack fork on Tatanka Prototype #1 because I needed the White Brothers fork for another project and because, according to Carver, the intended use of this fork is sand and snow. Precisely where this particular bike sees 90% of its use.
For what it is worth, Bikeman offers the following caveat on their website in the description of the Ti O’beast fork:
If you are looking to stiffen the front end of your bike up, this fork is NOT for you. It is designed to be used on, and proved a great ride characteristics in, snow and sand. If your fat bike is your everyday summer trail bike we recommend the Carbon O’Beast fork.
The Ti O’Beast, as the name implies, is made from Titanium and is designed for a symmetrical wheel build.
Set up on the Tatanka was easy. By shear happenstance the 210mm steerer was almost exactly the correct length out of the box to replace the White Brothers fork that I had cut down. Noteworthy here is that a 210mm steerer is not exactly long for a fat-bike so measure yours before you commit! (UPDATE! As I was fact checking for this story I learned that not only is the new batch of Ti O’Beast forks in stock but the new version has a longer steerer at 240mm!)
Also fortuitous was that the Carver fork uses a 135mm front-specific spacing and, while the White Brothers uses a direct, post-style mount and the Carver uses an ISO 160mm front mount, the good thing was when the Magura MT2 caliper was installed the front-specific Paul Component Engineering WHUB worked perfectly. No new wheel/hub necessary on this bike. Note, however, that this is not a common application yet so you may need a new hub or a spacer on your 135mm front hub. Carver has spacers. so if you have a rear spaced hub on the front of your fatbike, ask them about one when you order.
I am using 82mm Rolling Darryls with Big Fat Larrys on this bike and the combo works great with plenty of clearance between the fork legs at about 18mm per side. No problem getting your 100mm rim with BFLs on it in there!
The ride of the Ti O’Beast is plush to say the least. The flexy, shock absorbing nature of titanium is readily apparent and although this bike is primarily a beach and snow bike it does get ridden on trails and around town where I have not found the flex to be a major issue but this is also not my primary trail bike and I don’t put it to the hard test like I do my normal rig. I can understand why Carver has made the caveat as to the intended use of the fork. Probably the most noticeable manifestation of the flex is some vibration when using the front brake hard. But, again, this is primarily for beach and snow. Heck, a front brake really isn’t necessary for most snow and beach riding!
Winter is coming and this bike will see more use on the snow so we’ll catch up with another report later in the season. For now, I am happy with the Ti O’Beast!
Carver Ti O’Beast Specs
- 680g or 1lb, 8oz with the stock, uncut 210mm steerer tube.
- Widest spot on the fork abut 312mm from the axle centerline is a generous 135mm
- 135mm front-specific spacing
- 465mm A/C fork
As I mentioned above, I purchased the Ti O’Beast from Bikeman during a special for our Newsletter subscribers with my own money. Bikeman is a sponsor of this website but that doesn’t influence my reviews. I strive for accurate info and my best impressions throughout.