Dating a bike racer
The curve of each fork blade is concentrated in the most flexible part of the fork, also making for a smoother ride.Many of today's forks have straight fork blades, or blades that curve forward gradually over their full length. A low-end tapered steel front fork blade starts out as a tube of constant diameter and constant wall thickness.Traditional bikes for road use normally had bottom brackets about 10 5/8" from the road.Everybody knew that they shouldn't pedal while leaning sharply into a high-speed corner.(See: Starting and Stopping.) Many cyclists, unaware of this change in geometry, adjust their saddle height as they always did, with respect to their reach to the ground.
Lawsuit-shy contemporary manufacturers tend toward a "belt and suspenders" approach with a part like a fork which is likely to cause injury if it breaks.Once the marketplace had become accustomed to high bottom brackets, manufacturers became afraid to sell bikes with low ones any more.