Dropouts - Laser cut vs Full investment hollow cast

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1/16/2018 3:07 AM

Basically I am trying to decide between the WTP Patron fork and WTP Sterling.

The only difference that I can see are the dropouts.
I recall reading once that laser cut will always be better than casted.

How true is that?

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1/16/2018 3:23 AM

Well, arguably the best forks (Odyssey) are laser cut or CNCd, and they've yet to even try investment casting on their forks.

Theoretically investment cast is stronger though. You get a bigger weld on a stronger part of the fork. You also get a thicker, bend-proof drop out (ive never bent 4mm thick Odsy drop outs in 4+ years of riding them though.)

I think at the end of the day, them being Post Weld Treated makes a bigger difference in durability than the type of drop out does. IC is stronger by design, but I don't see many laser cut/CNCd drop outs failing, especially when paired with a female hub.

I'd say pick whichever catches your eye more, I'm sure they're both incredible forks.

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Refs : SnM An1mal, GThompson121, Chuck8273, blizzbikes, bmxsteve99, kevin.brock.338, zinum, Brian_Griffin, billyhandyjunior, riverM, tomdon
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1/16/2018 3:44 AM

HardBMX_Tim wrote:

Well, arguably the best forks (Odyssey) are laser cut or CNCd, and they've yet to even try investment casting on their forks.
...more

I see!

The part that scares me is the "hollow" part.
I mean, the investment cast dropouts are 7mm but have that hollow part

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1/16/2018 3:51 AM

am-shaegar wrote:

I see!

The part that scares me is the "hollow" part.
I mean, the investment cast dropouts are 7mm but have that hollow part

Sunday has been doing hollow drop outs on their frames for years with no issues that I'm aware of.

When the drop out is that thick, it's pretty easy to make them hollow without sacrificing strength. It's a pretty solid design imo.

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Refs : SnM An1mal, GThompson121, Chuck8273, blizzbikes, bmxsteve99, kevin.brock.338, zinum, Brian_Griffin, billyhandyjunior, riverM, tomdon
Instagram : @timhankinsbmx


1/16/2018 4:19 AM

Yeah its all a weight trade off. Invest cast is heavier but stronger.

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1/16/2018 4:30 AM

I'd have to say, with all things being equal.... lifetime warranty, etc... I don't see the point of having a heavier, thicker dropout if there's no problem with a thinner, lighter dropout. Although I am not a weight weenie, I don't want to purposely add weight if I don't need it. Maybe if I had issues in the past with breaking forks, & the dropouts were the point of issue, I'd look into a solution to the problem. But I wouldn't even think about it if I had never had a problem.

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1/16/2018 9:01 PM

I have WTP Switch forks for about 2 years or more ? Forget . Anyways they’re strong as fuck. Zero issues , and that’s coming from someone who bent S&M dropouts ( partially a design flaw though )

I know Volume claims that a 4mm laser cut dropout will be stronger than a cast dropout ( I asked because I was going to buy a Voyager frame that has the 4mm dropouts as mentioned . ) As for me , I’d much rather have a thicker dropout, doesn’t matter how it is . My Volume Bermuda frame has 7mm dropouts that are cast I believe , and they’re beefy as FUCK . I have zero worries about it . So I imagine any fork will be fine . As well , the WTP team came here and they all shred hard as fuck .. I trust my forks after seeing Dillon and Jordan go bananas at a local jam . I trust my forks , which is something I wouldn’t say lightly .

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1/16/2018 10:18 PM

I saw a guy trying to sell some primo stevie forks the other day that had cracked on the weld, so the investment cast part was just hanging out. I personally think they're a bad idea if you do a lot of front peg grinds

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1/17/2018 5:24 AM

grumpySteve wrote:

I saw a guy trying to sell some primo stevie forks the other day that had cracked on the weld, so the investment cast part was ...more

Yeah, I have a slight phobia about anything cast that is under stress. Had too many issues (with other equipment).

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1/17/2018 7:25 AM

grumpySteve wrote:

I saw a guy trying to sell some primo stevie forks the other day that had cracked on the weld, so the investment cast part was ...more

Mishinn_Control wrote:

Yeah, I have a slight phobia about anything cast that is under stress. Had too many issues (with other equipment).

Cast chromoly and cast aluminum are very very different.

As far as I'm aware, nobody has managed to crack through cast drop outs. But, as Steve mentioned, Investment cast stuff seems to pull apart at the weld when it fails.

This was a huge problem with the WTP Cream frames. The head tubes would essentially pop off over time.

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Refs : SnM An1mal, GThompson121, Chuck8273, blizzbikes, bmxsteve99, kevin.brock.338, zinum, Brian_Griffin, billyhandyjunior, riverM, tomdon
Instagram : @timhankinsbmx