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I just found a Reba for a bargain price and everything fits my frame except for the fact it uses quick release rather than axle; the rear dropouts are axle and with this fork the front will be QR, while I am up to changing my wheels because that was part of the plan, I wonder if it's a reasonable idea to mix QR and Axle, or if I should wait to find another bargain (who knows when) on a XC fork that has axle.

  • Question essentially boils down to whats better - a thru axle setup with a cheaper wheel or a QR setup with better wheel. The marketing guys will say the Thru axle, but my money is on a better wheel. – mattnz Oct 7 '17 at 2:04
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There's no fundamental reason why not but it would be an unusual combination. Through-axle fork with QR rear is much more common.

Bear in mind though that there are good reasons why through-axle designs have replaced QRs over the last 5-10 years. It helps make the fork stiffer and it prevents any chance of the front wheel being ejected from the dropouts under disk braking forces. You might also find it harder to find a suitable quality front wheel these days if you're restricted to QR compatible hubs.

  • I see I honestly wanted to save money in the fork so I could get better wheels. – Onza Oct 6 '17 at 9:08
  • what about conversion kits?... – Onza Oct 6 '17 at 9:08
  • Some hubs are convertible with spacers etc. which is usually easy to do yourself if the hub is suitable. The only way to convert a fork though is replacing the entire lower assembly which is a more difficult and expensive job. – elliptic Oct 6 '17 at 9:20
  • From 350 euro to 450 euro would you consider it being reasonable to pay 100 euro more for full axle?... – Onza Oct 6 '17 at 9:43
  • The reason for QR on back and thru on front is its less advantage on back, but mostly comes from a well loved frame getting a fork upgrade, where it would be rare for a well loved fork to get a frame upgrade. – mattnz Oct 7 '17 at 1:59
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(The term you want is "thru-axle.")

It's a little backwards-looking but there's no critical reason not to. How wise it is depends a lot on what kind of rider you are; riders towards the smoother and/or lighter end of the spectrum are going to get less benefit from a thru-axle front. There are a handful of bikes that come this way because they're at the lower end of a model line where the frame is the same throughout.

While product recommendations are off-topic here, QR Rebas are good forks that a lot of people ride very happily, and thru-axles being common now doesn't change that.

One consideration if you're looking to get fancy wheels now with 15mm thru-axle adapters available and run them QR for the time being is that if you do wind up upgrading the fork again, unless we're talking about a 26" bike then you may very possibly want to get a Boost 110 fork, and while many normal 15mm thru hubs can be adapted to Boost 110, they fundamentally can't take advantage of its upside because the whole point is to get the flanges further apart than normal 15x100 hubs allow.

  • Well one thing is the Reba with QR I found... it is 350 euro, whereas the reba with maxle is 450 euro; I don't know if this price is normal or I just found a bargain, otherwise I'd just wait. – Onza Oct 6 '17 at 9:43
  • High light the recommendation for adapters for QR. That makes the wheel a keeper as opposed to an obsolete part. – mattnz Oct 7 '17 at 2:05

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