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  1. #1
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    Fork Damping Importance

    is it unnatural to run NO high/low speed compression damping? Here's the thing, I've always run 30-35% sag, but I've been speeding up as a rider, the plush setting is making some parts of the trail rough on me. seems like no matter how much damping i dial in, it only gets worse...

    so, i went to a much more firm spring rate. bike actually felt better with 20% sag NO damping, then the previous 30% sag with some damping. just seems odd... at least to me, since EVERYONE always talks about the importance of damping.

    i know rebound is def a little more important. But if I'm not using all my travel, and I'm fork isn't diving (due to firm spring rate) it doesn't make sense to dampen these things!


  2. #2
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    It's hard to go off of terms like 'rough on me' unless we know exactly how it feels bad. This will also be much more helpful if we knew what kind of fork you have, how much you weigh, your riding style/type of trails you like, etc. Someone who rides flowy jump lines will have very different suspension settings than someone who rides the Redbull Rampage, and both of them will have different settings than someone who pounds big rocks and roots all day. There is no one-setting-solution that will work perfectly for all terrain. The purpose of suspension is not simply to absorb impacts. It's also to keep your wheels in contact with the ground as it changes. Both compression and rebound damping are equally important in accomplishing that, and both should usually be used.

    Generally, if you're running 20% sag, not using all of your travel, and adding any compression damping is making things too harsh on you, yes, it's unnatural. It sounds like you've gone way too firm on your spring. Let us know the info I mentioned above, and maybe we can provide a bit more accurate suggestions.
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  3. #3
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    2013 boxxer world cup solo air forks. and now, having said that, everyone will say 'get rid of them' haha. no bueno.

    here's my problem. when i was running the 30% sag with the softer spring rate, braking bumps killed my arms, LOTS of handlebar feedback. even with the high speed compression damping closed/off, i was NOT blowing through my travel at all. So to me, adding compresion damping in, would seem counter productive? since it would firm it up even more.

    at my 'soft rate' setting, i was already 5psi below recommend pressure for the fork (55-70psi for my weight, i was running 50 to get me the 30% sag)

    so i guess, im confused, where high speed damping comes in for things like chatter. i had LSC dialed in, to help with dive, that was fine, but it seems that adding MORE HSC damping would make it even more harsh. is that where i am wrong? i thought having no damping is the most supple? so the fork can move quickly through its travel.

    which when i tested this with a firmer spring rate, and no HSC or LSC, i wasn't diving and i was flying right over the chatter.

  4. #4
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    basically, what im getting at.....

    is should i be running more firm via HSC, to keep the 30-35% sag.

    or should i be running more firm via spring rate, with no damping dialed in.

    so far, the latter has been better in the rough. the softer setting is fine when 'cruising', specially for small bump compliance, but as soon as i pick up bike speeds in the rough, my arms get destroyed.

    let me also add..... both soft/firm spring rates, regardless of compression damping settings, are NOT bottoming out/blowing through travel.

  5. #5
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    It sounds like the stiffer spring with lighter damping is working better for you, so you should probably run it like that. Compression adjusters all the way out doesn't mean 0 damping force, there's nothing wrong with running it like that. That's a fairly progressive fork, so it makes sense that keeping it higher in its travel would make things easier on your hands/ arms.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for confirming bengxe. was asking around and another guy said the same exact thing you did. (otherwise I'm getting opinions all over the board - no two suggestions/theories matched - until now)

    will leave firm settings on a few runs and go from there.

  7. #7
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    Yeah, he's right. That fork does ramp up pretty hard after the middle of the stroke. If what you have is feeling a lot better, I'd say run with it. Or sell it and get a new fork jk
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  8. #8
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    first off, compression damping should have no effect on your sag. the only thing that will determine sag is spring rate, so once you get that where you like it, you can then start making adjustments. if you want a good starting point, run both HSC and LSC at exactly 50% of the tuning range, and adjust from there. LSC will effect low shaft speed moments, I.E. pumping rollers. So running a few clicks toward the firmer setting will help the fork from feeling "wallowy", and help with pumping rollers to get more speed. HSC will effect high speed shaft moments, I.E. hucking a jump and landing to flat. HSC is harder to get dialed in correctly, because you don't want to blow through your travel on a hard hit, and you don't want it to be firm for quick small hits in rapid succession(braking bumps, trail chatter). My advice is to set both to 50% and go from there. Suspension setup via internet advice is very hard to do, and no setup is "incorrect" since everyone's preferences vary so much. so your best bet is to experiment on your own and don't listen too much to others advice.

  9. #9
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    i've actually heard that a few times too (set everything to 50% and work from there). now that i know what is feeling better, i made note of the settings. wouldn't hurt to give it a shot. worst case it doesn't feel as nice for me i can always go back to whats been working.

    Thanks guys.

  10. #10
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    When was the last time you rebuilt the fork? Those forks get REALLY sticky really fast. If you're not changing the oil and regreasing the seals every 2-3 hours of saddle time the inherent friction in the fork will mask and dominant any damping coming from the damper. That's probably why the fork feels very rough, not because of adjuster settings.

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