Fox's New XL Mudguard - First Look

Fox XL Mud Guard for 36/38 on a Specialized Status with a Fox Float Factory  DHX2

Because Bigger is Better, Baby! At Least for Mudguards...

Fox's Propriety Mudguards

    Molded plastic mudguards are not a novel concept and neither are Fox's proprietary Mudguards. Integrating neatly with their 36 and 38 all-mountain and enduro forks, they're durable, sleek, and easy to install. While smaller than their newest version, Fox's original mudguard shields your stanchions, seals, and face as much as competing mudguards, but is significantly more streamlined. In fact, it integrates so nicely that ever since its release, we’ve had a shockingly difficult time keeping them on the shelves. Everyone loves them. Not only for the convenience of keeping you and your bike cleaner, they make your bike look sick and there's no need to deal with annoying zip-ties. So why did Fox feel the need to make a second mudguard? Because bigger is better, thats why! At least for mudguards...

At a Glance:

  • Fits Fox 38 & 36 (2021 and newer Performance, Performance Elite and Factory models)
  • 85% More Coverage
  • Extends 3" in the front & 9.5" in the rear
  • Easy install using the same clean mounting method as the original, eliminating the need for zip ties
  • Cost: $25.00 USD
Fox 36 or 38 XL Mud guard comparison against the normal mud guard on a white background

Fox's Original & XL Mudguards Side-By-Side

Fox's XL Mudguard

     My only gripe with Fox’s original mudguard was that it didn't shield against crud better than more basic mudguards on the market. All mudguards, including Fox's original, do their job and significantly reduce the amount of mud and grime build up around the arch of your fork (and your face) compared to not using a mudguard. However, there's still quite a bit of junk that makes it past the smaller plastic shields. Especially in the extra-sloppy conditions we have here in the PNW. All things considered, being the producer of some of the best suspension products around, I figured a bigger, better mudguard was well within Fox's capabilities.

    Lo and behold, I can gripe no more with the introduction of Fox’s XL Mudguard. Overshadowing their smaller fender by 85%, it extends 3" further in the front and 2.5" further towards the rear (when compared to its predecessor). All while maintaining the same elegant and easy-to-install design of the original.

    I'm particularly excited about the bit that extends in front of the fork. In my opinion, this is the biggest advantage of the new, larger fender. Often overlooked is the fact that a lot of gunk hitting your face is actually flung by the front tire way out in front of you, causing you to ride straight into it before the gunk hits the ground. Most fenders on the market neglect to extend beyond the arch of the fork and therefore only protect against debris coming from behind the front wheel, moving in the upward direction. Fox's decision to add that 3" section in front of the fork should greatly reduce the amount of mud being flung in front of you, hopefully leaving your face much cleaner.

Fox XL Mud guard on a Fox Factory 38 mountain bike fork

Compatibility & Installation

       Fox's XL Mudguard has the same compatibility and installation process as its smaller sibling. Fitting the 36 and 38 in Performance, Performance Elite and Factory trims (2021 or newer), it uses Fox's pressure-release-buttons on the back of the lowers along with two included hex-screws to hold it in place. Installation is as easy as:

1) Remove both pressure-release-buttons from the lowers.

2) Use a pick or your fingernail to separate and remove the plastic washers from the back of the pressure-release-button assemblies. Be sure not to remove the rubber o-rings.

3) Line up the Mudguards lower two holes with the pressure-release-button holes on the forks lower, then re-install the pressure-release-buttons. (torque to 5.0 Nm)

4) Secure the top of the mudguard by installing the two hex-screws into the back of the forks arch. (torque to 0.5 Nm)

  And that's it! Simple, right?

Final Thoughts

    Overall, I'm very impressed with Fox's new XL Mudguard. Priced at $25, it's nearly the same cost as other mudguards on the market (many of which are merely a sheet of plastic cut to a fender shape), yet offers significantly more performance in an admirably refined package. The only real downside is the inability to style out your bike with cool designs or colors, but that's nothing a few of your favorite stickers won't fix.

    Bottom line, if you already own or are looking to pick up a Fox 36 or 38 and are not concerned with funky colors and cool designs, I'd recommend Fox's XL Mudguard above all others. The price is essentially the same, but you'll end up with much less gunk on your stanchions, seals, and face.

Going through a large puddle with the Fox XL Mud Guard

That's a first look at Fox's new XL Mudguard - Thanks for reading!

Featured Products

Fox 36/38 Mud Guard XL Product Photo
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Brodie Hall



Bellingham, WA

Current Bikes: Kona Process 134

Bike Size: Large

Favorite Trails: Spacewolf, Galbraith / Graysill Connect, Coalbank Pass

About Me: I grew up in the San Juan Mountains of Southwest Colorado where high country epics are the local favorite. After moving to the PNW in the summer of 2021, I'm really loving the steep, loamy, and rooty terrain that Bellingham has to offer. Jumps are growing on me, but still not really my thing. Historically, my bike of choice is a mid-travel 29'er, but the steeper, faster terrain in this area has me curious about a longer-travel mullet bike.