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  1. #51
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    Thanks, that's a great point re: future adjustments. Probably a good enough argument to convince me to do it the right way the first time!

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Vega
    For the install posted by Speedub.Nate above, he removes the star nut, and then he has to use some other means of securing the headset to preload the headset bearings before installing the cylinder. I was just wondering if I could leave the star nut in to do the preload, and then remove the star nut just before dropping in the cylinder?? Wouldn't be the cleanest way to do things, but as stated I am lazy.......and cheap.
    Once installed, you can use that really large (35mm) nut on the Hopey Damper to set the headset preload. So another way to do it is to put the stem on as tightly as you can without a star nut or star nut replacement. Then, install the damper per Nate's instructions. Once that's done, loosen the stem and use the 35mm nut to set the headset preload. Once you're happy with it, tighten the stem and then tighten that 35mm nut a bit more.

    The one problem with this approach is that with the damper installed, it's difficult (due to the damper's action) to feel how tight you have the bearings by turning the handlebars back and forth. If there are other drawbacks with this approach, I'm sure that someone will mention them...

  3. #53
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    Speedub.Nate, thanks a bunch for the great write-up. Great product but the instructions are not perfect, this really helped solve my install issues. Tim Hopey should post it on his own site.

  4. #54
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    Okay, I got the wife's Hopey installed last night....Thanks Speedub.Nate for the great write up, and the tip on the homemade headeset press. Everything went smoothly until I had to tighten the 12 mm hex nut: The extension rod for my socket wrench was barely long to reach up the stem, an then my wrench range was limited by the down tube. I got through it eventually, though.

    Anyway, this is not a complaint so much as a question...seems there is a lot more play in the steering damper at the center position than I expected. The stem can turn 1 or 2 degrees in either diretion before the dampening kicks in. Is this normal? I kind of expected it to hold the stem perfectly straight, although I guess I can see where a little play might be desirable.

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Vega

    ...seems there is a lot more play in the steering damper at the center position than I expected. The stem can turn 1 or 2 degrees in either diretion before the dampening kicks in. Is this normal?
    That's about how mine both work. I don't know if it's intentional, i.e. designed that way, as opposed to acceptable slop, but whatever the case, I think it's normal.
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  6. #56
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    Okay, cool. I guess I didn't screw anything up, and I can go ahead and leave postive feedback for my Ebay seller.

    My wife is still a little unsure how useful it is, but she's excited about the possibilities.

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Vega


    My wife is still a little unsure how useful it is, but she's excited about the possibilities.
    My wife is the same. She questioned the Hopey and thought it was an insult that I installed it on her bike. But after she rode with it for a while, I turned if off (lowest damping setting), and she couldn't help but to notice the difference.
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  8. #58
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    Just wante dot update my wife's experience with her Hopey steering damper. In a nutshell, she loves, and cannot imagine ever riding without it.

    For some background, my wife is 5' 3", and barely weighs 100 pounds. She has been riding for over 7 years, and this will be her 4th year of racing. She has great balance and decent technical skills, but she is a very slow descender. I have often noticed that she looks like she is really fighting her handlebar through the technical stuff, and sometimes when I follow her on a long forest service road climb her tire marks look like I'm following a snake. As she gets tired she tends to pull on the bar with every pedal stroke.

    She has had instruction from some of the best coaches in the country, and yet she still has these problems.

    So, I thought the damer would help her out. At first she just thought it made steering feel tight, and didn't really understand what it was doing for her. Every week, I tightened it down a bit more without her noticing. I immediately noticed her downhill speed increasing. She is still slow, but she is gaining confidence. We just finished the Snake Creek Time Trial in Dalton, GA, and she said she was flying over the rocks like never before -- but instead of crediting the steering damper she just assumed her skills had magically increased.

    On Sunday we were out at one of our favorite trails, and I decided to turn off the damper. I waited until we crossed a rock garden. Then we stopped and I turned off the damper and asked her to ride the garden again. She barely went 30 yards before she lost her balance and started twisting the handlebar around and had to stop. She wouldn't even try the rocks and insisted on getting the damper back on. Now she understands why her skill was improving.

    Granted, this was not a fair test. I am sure if she rode around for a few minutes without the damper she would remember how to maintain control of the bar without overcompensating, but it was pretty funny to watch. However, all she neede was that brief encounter to realize what the damper was doing for her and (finally) thank me for getting it.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Vega
    Just wante dot update my wife's experience with her Hopey steering damper. In a nutshell, she loves, and cannot imagine ever riding without it.
    Cool beans. I love witnessing this kind of progress (that is to say, with my wife... I'm sure the same holds true with you).

    Even more impressive this past summer was getting my wife on 29" wheels (she's 5'5"). Two areas of rapid, vast improvement were steep climbs, and downhill confidence -- even more so than when we added the Hopey.

    Anyhow, "crutch" or not, little tools like the Hopey can make a difference.
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  10. #60
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    Resurrecting this thread yet again....

    I posted this question in the Specialized forum, but I figured why not reach out to the guys who have personal knowledge?

    We are considering getting my wife a Specialized Era FSR Expert Carbon (her race team has a sponsorship deal). The LBS does not have one in stock, so I cannot see what the headset is like. Specialized describes it as "1-1/8" Threadless, Campy style upper and lower cartridge bearing". I am ignorant, and do not really know what that means....do I need to purchase a different type of bracket? (she currently uses a standard 1-1/8" threadless King headset).

  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Vega
    I posted this question in the Specialized forum, but I figured why not reach out to the guys who have personal knowledge?

    We are considering getting my wife a Specialized Era FSR Expert Carbon (her race team has a sponsorship deal). The LBS does not have one in stock, so I cannot see what the headset is like. Specialized describes it as "1-1/8" Threadless, Campy style upper and lower cartridge bearing". I am ignorant, and do not really know what that means....do I need to purchase a different type of bracket? (she currently uses a standard 1-1/8" threadless King headset).
    After reading the Park Tool description of the Campagnolo Hiddenset, it seems to me that you won't be able to use a Hopey damper with that headset. The description says:

    The bearings cone races do not press into the frame. The frame has a specially machined headtube to accept the bearings.

    This suggests to me that there's no headset cup to which you'll be able to attach the Hopey Damper's bracket.

  12. #62
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    I got an email from Tim at Hopey, and he claims the zero stack bracket will work, although one might need to use the replacement bearing cup they send with the bracket.

    In the meantime, we decided against the Specialized bike, but its good to know that in theory this will work.

  13. #63
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    If Kevin's description is correct, then Tim is wrong and the Hopey will not work. I've used the Hopey on two Zero Stack bikes, and they do indeed require press-in headset cups to clamp to.

    If the bearing seats are machined or otherwise integrated into the head tube (non-removable), there will be nothing for the Hopey bracket to attach to, short of drilling a hole in your bike's top tube.
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  14. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Vega
    In the meantime, we decided against the Specialized bike, but its good to know that in theory this will work.
    I still have my doubts.

    If by "1-1/8" Threadless, Campy style upper and lower cartridge bearing", Specialized is referring to the Campagnolo Hiddenset, then there doesn't appear to be any bearing cups to which to attach the bracket. Look at the picture below from the Park Tool web site. No headset cups.



    If Specialized is referring to some other system with headset cups, then it'll work.

    It may also be the case that Hopey has machined a special cup which'll fit that frame. In that case, you'd presumably use a bearing different than the one intended for use with that frame.

    In any case, if you end up considering that Specialized bike again, and want to use a Hopey damper with it, I think some more investigation is in order. If you do end up going that route, let us know what happens...

  15. #65
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    Tim said Specialized is using a zero stack headset with a removable cup. I haven't seen one in person, so I don't know.

  16. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Vega
    Tim said Specialized is using a zero stack headset with a removable cup. I haven't seen one in person, so I don't know.
    According to the Specialized web site, the Era FSR Comp and Era FSR Expert uses 10mm insertion alloy cups. The carbon versions of the Era use Campy style bearings, etc. Could it be that Tim was looking at the specs for the non-carbon frames?

    FWIW, my wife's (carbon fiber) Ibis Mojo has the headset cups integrated into the head tube. I couldn't figure a way to use the Hopey damper with that frame either.

  17. #67
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    What if I have a carbon fork that has no hole in the bottom?

  18. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Cycle Shawn
    What if I have a carbon fork that has no hole in the bottom?
    Then you're kind of hosed because you really do need to be able to tighten that nut at the bottom of the damper unit.

  19. #69
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    Hopey Damper play

    Sorry to re-resurrect the thread. Great thread by the way, on topic, informative, polite.

    I just bought a used hopey damper, which I have not yet installed, but I have some concerns about it's undamped play. The upper control arm/bracket (i.e. the piece of aluminum that sticks of the top of the damper and engages the post you cut to length) has slop/play it in.

    I've heard some CENTER play is designed in to the unit, however the play in my unit exists in all positions because the source of this play is not from inside the damper's "guts." Rather the source of the play is from where the aluminum upper control arm engages the steel shaft of the damper. When you look closely at the unit from the side and wiggle the control arm back and forth, you can see the control arm moving while the damper's steel shaft remains still. It's like when you have a socket on a nut and the socket is just a little to big. Given that that control arm is aluminum and the damper shaft is steel and the engagement between the two is a simple hex pattern, I'm thinking it's only a matter of time before the engagement hole of the control arm "rounds out" and develops more and more slop.
    Or, is this somehow part of the design?
    I bought the unit from someone who had it serviced by Hopey, and then never reinstalled it. So it hasn't been used since Hopey rebuilt/served it, so Hopey must have found the slop/play acceptable.

    Anyone have similar experience with their dampers? Thoughts? Thanks guys!

  20. #70
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    Could someone please tell me what hopey damper actually does?

  21. #71
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    First some terminology. "Springs" resist position: You compress a spring and hold it, it pushes back until it gets into it's "unsprung" position.
    "Dampers" resist motion: A damper doesn't care where it is, it just don't want to move from one spot to another.

    Shocks (and suspension forks) have a spring and damper: they resist position and motion.

    The Hopey steering damper is just a damper (no spring). It resists the motion of turning your handle bars. The faster your handles try to turn the more resistence the damper provides.

    Steering dampers are used on big lifted trucks to prevent the front wheels from wobbling at high speeds. Steering dampers are used on MX because they have a big heavy front wheel (compared to a mtb) that gets knocked around with massive amount of energy and a humans arms aren't strong enough to absorb, so the damper absorbs.
    On mounting biking, it helps in a different way, it help by preventing over correction. The mbt front wheel is so light, it's easy to move (both from rocks hitting it, and from the human's input). Often times when we're trying to balance and steer and get through rocky stuff or keep a straight line, we turn our handlebars TOO much. The damper helps reduce excessive front wheel steering.

    Quote Originally Posted by PapaSmurf99
    Could someone please tell me what hopey damper actually does?

  22. #72
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    Smurf,

    I think it is for people who have never lifted a weight in their life and have a hard time keeping their handle bars straight.
    A better investment might be a gym membership.

    Eric

  23. #73
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    Eric, comments like that are the cancer of forums. Keep it to yourself. You are wrong and uneducated.

    Quote Originally Posted by rugbyred
    Smurf,

    I think it is for people who have never lifted a weight in their life and have a hard time keeping their handle bars straight.
    A better investment might be a gym membership.

    Eric
    Last edited by DirtyMartini; 04-24-2011 at 02:10 PM.

  24. #74
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    Hopey Damper zero-stack extra deep cup

    I'm trying to install my damper and have run into a problem at step #1.

    My bike has a 44mm/semi-integrated/zero-stack headset so I bought Hopey's zero-stack base bracket w/ "extra deep cup." The extra deep cup is 2mm deeper so that that 2mm bracket doesn't change the insertion depth of the upper cup into the head tube. Sounds great, right? Well, it looks like the inside depth of the Hopey upper replacement cup is too shallow!

    At least too shallow for an FSA Orbit Z headset, that is unless I'm not understanding something.
    As shown in the attached pictures, you can see that the orange inner sleeve insert for the upper bearing is supposed to sit level with the top edge of the bearing cup. This way the top cap can seal the bearing. However, with the extra deep cup, the bearing doesn't seat as deep and so the orange inner sleeve insert sits above the bearing cup, thus not allowing the top cap thingy to make a seal.

    Has anyone else noticed this? Maybe there's another headset with shallower bearings that fit the Hopey extra deep cup? Maybe for some reason you don't need the orange inner sleeve insert when using the damper?

    Thanks guys.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails (MkIII) Hopey Damper install pics...-imag0008.jpg  

    (MkIII) Hopey Damper install pics...-imag0009.jpg  

    (MkIII) Hopey Damper install pics...-imag0011.jpg  

    (MkIII) Hopey Damper install pics...-imag0012.jpg  

    Last edited by DirtyMartini; 04-24-2011 at 02:11 PM.

  25. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by DirtyMartini
    Eric, comments like that are the cancer of forums. Keep it to yourself. You are wrong and uneducated.
    +100% on ^. I have 40 years of experience on two wheels. And when I saw 40 years, I mean almost every day, along with hours per day on dirt bikes and mountain bikes. I have ridden a bike with a Hopey damper. A steering damper will make anyone a better rider on dirt bikes or mountain bikes. I just wish I could put one on my carbon rigid bike. The carbon fork doesn't have a hole in the bottom of the steerer tube.

  26. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by rugbyred
    Smurf,

    I think it is for people who have never lifted a weight in their life and have a hard time keeping their handle bars straight.
    A better investment might be a gym membership.

    Eric
    yeah lol im 235 lbs and used to spend 4 hours a day in the gym lifting weights. i use one for certain rides.

    compound fractured my wrist and 160+ sparrow fractures (drunk driver hit me at 60) wont go into the fact i was a bag of smashd bones and blood but the damper keeps the wrist from locking up and helps when doing multiple runs at tunnel and the bigger resorts.
    after running one because of this reason id use one anywase. when my buddies arms are smoked i have less arm pump and fatigue. going into the next day of riding my wrists arent jacked.
    you can dial it off and use as desired which is what i do when i dont need it and it helps when climbing especially with big bikes.

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  27. #77
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    [QUOTE=bullcrew]yeah lol im 235 lbs and used to spend 4 hours a day in the gym lifting weights. i use one for certain rides.

    compound fractured my wrist and 160+ sparrow fractures (drunk driver hit me at 60) wont go into the fact i was a bag of smashd bones and blood but the damper keeps the wrist from locking up and helps when doing multiple runs at tunnel and the bigger resorts.
    after running one because of this reason id use one anywase. when my buddies arms are smoked i have less arm pump and fatigue. going into the next day of riding my wrists arent jacked.
    you can dial it off and use as desired which is what i do when i dont need it and it helps when climbing especially with big bikes.

    love

  28. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by rugbyred
    Smurf,

    I think it is for people who have never lifted a weight in their life and have a hard time keeping their handle bars straight.
    A better investment might be a gym membership.

    Eric
    Try riding moto with and without a damper and your attitude will change. A steering damper is an excellent piece of technology. It's even nice on sport bikes.

  29. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archi-Magus
    Try riding moto with and without a damper and your attitude will change. A steering damper is an excellent piece of technology. It's even nice on sport bikes.
    i don't think anyone disagrees that it is necessary on a moto. this forum, however, is not for 700lb motorized vehicles. relevance to mtb use is subjective. to some it is as useful as bar ends and to others, well, it's as useful as bar ends.

  30. #80
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    So basically it just adds resistance to you handlebars so that its harder to turn, which keeps you stable at higher speeds? Seems legit.

  31. #81
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    My experience with steering dampers is both good and bad. However I've only used them on MX bikes in off-road conditions. At higher speeds or in faster rocky situations they are very good. At speed they allow you to relax more and focus on the terrain rather than on controlling the bike. In rocks they keep the bike going straighter and where you point it. However, in loose or slippery conditions I don't like them. They actually get in the way of controlling a bike in slippery mud or snow. A steeering damper actually causes a bike to scissor at the head tube instead of the front wheel moving and finding traction or correcting for slipper conditions. This may be why you don't see World Cup racers using them. Instantly reacting to slipper roots and loose conditions is so important at that level.
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  32. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by DirtyMartini
    Eric, comments like that are the cancer of forums. Keep it to yourself. You are wrong and uneducated.
    Bravo.

  33. #83
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    The Hopey damper will add resistance as you turn the bars away from center, but does not damp as you return to center.

    If by "higher speeds" you mean faster handlebar turning speeds, then yes.

    If by "high speeds" you mean going down the hill faster, then yes also, but it will also ad stability when going down the hill slower (or going slowly across a skinny or through a rock garden etc).

    Also, turning your front wheel suddenly, quickly tends to initiate a front wheel slid (lose of traction) which is not good. The faster you're going the less margin of error you have available for controlling the front wheel, and once you start to slid you start to lose control. The damper will help prevent suddenly turning the front wheel too much too fast, and in turn prevent you from losing traction at higher speeds. At lower speed, it's not a matter of losing traction as much as keeping a straighter line by keeping a straighter front wheel.

    Quote Originally Posted by PapaSmurf99
    So basically it just adds resistance to you handlebars so that its harder to turn, which keeps you stable at higher speeds? Seems legit.
    Last edited by DirtyMartini; 04-25-2011 at 09:17 AM.

  34. #84
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    That makes a lot of sense. If you're going that fast, and are that good at controling the front wheel, I could see a damper getting in the way.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott@GO-RIDE.com
    My experience with steering dampers is both good and bad. However I've only used them on MX bikes in off-road conditions. At higher speeds or in faster rocky situations they are very good. At speed they allow you to relax more and focus on the terrain rather than on controlling the bike. In rocks they keep the bike going straighter and where you point it. However, in loose or slippery conditions I don't like them. They actually get in the way of controlling a bike in slippery mud or snow. A steeering damper actually causes a bike to scissor at the head tube instead of the front wheel moving and finding traction or correcting for slipper conditions. This may be why you don't see World Cup racers using them. Instantly reacting to slipper roots and loose conditions is so important at that level.

  35. #85
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    dirtymartini,
    I may be wrong, but I am definitely not uneducated. I admit that I choose my words incorrectly. I have been in a sour mood as of late (just found out I going under the knife).
    As for you bullcrew, very impressed with your ability to recover from something as traumatic as you did. My hat goes off to you.
    What were you training for that you spent four hours a day in the gym? I have found that any longer than 90min in the gym and I can not get out of there fast enough. My workouts are tailored to that as well.
    Once again, my apologies for being a grouch.

    Eric

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    Apology accepted. That was very decent of you.
    For what it's worth, I should have said "uneducated on this matter." I'm sorry.
    Good luck under the knife.

    Quote Originally Posted by rugbyred
    dirtymartini,
    I may be wrong, but I am definitely not uneducated. I admit that I choose my words incorrectly. I have been in a sour mood as of late (just found out I going under the knife).
    As for you bullcrew, very impressed with your ability to recover from something as traumatic as you did. My hat goes off to you.
    What were you training for that you spent four hours a day in the gym? I have found that any longer than 90min in the gym and I can not get out of there fast enough. My workouts are tailored to that as well.
    Once again, my apologies for being a grouch.

    Eric

  37. #87
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    I tried one immediately took it off hinders sensitivity and feedback at the experienced rider level and found it to be actually dangerous in gotta correct now situations in extreme tech sections,a novice might find them use full to give a sense of stability and to build confidence.

  38. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by techfersure
    found it to be actually dangerous
    That's a new one.

  39. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by rugbyred
    dirtymartini,
    I may be wrong, but I am definitely not uneducated. I admit that I choose my words incorrectly. I have been in a sour mood as of late (just found out I going under the knife).
    As for you bullcrew, very impressed with your ability to recover from something as traumatic as you did. My hat goes off to you.
    What were you training for that you spent four hours a day in the gym? I have found that any longer than 90min in the gym and I can not get out of there fast enough. My workouts are tailored to that as well.
    Once again, my apologies for being a grouch.

    Eric
    Was into body building and mass then cardio cutting ontop of boxxing and fighting. usually split into 2 2hour sessions.
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  40. #90
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    hopey still in biz ?

    so is hopey still around ? because i have one thats been in the box for awhile and i need to sell it but it needs to be sent back to hopey to be recentered. what do you guys think it's worth in this condition ? ...ralph
    i need to ride more. building jumps takes to much time...my other hobby is kicking the crap outta my home built mook jong.

  41. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by techfersure
    I tried one immediately took it off hinders sensitivity and feedback at the experienced rider level and found it to be actually dangerous in gotta correct now situations in extreme tech sections,a novice might find them use full to give a sense of stability and to build confidence.
    you did not use it long enough.
    i'd say it takes 1 or 2 days to get used to it after that you are hooked.
    I had one for a season, and loved it,i'm an experience rider.
    Last edited by tartosuc; 04-26-2011 at 10:42 AM.

  42. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by saturnine
    i don't think anyone disagrees that it is necessary on a moto. this forum, however, is not for 700lb motorized vehicles. relevance to mtb use is subjective. to some it is as useful as bar ends and to others, well, it's as useful as bar ends.
    Sportbikes are generally in the 400 lb range and MX less. Modern DH bikes are more and more similar to dirt bikes and I think the relevance is certainly there when you reach higher speeds through rough stuff.

  43. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1962
    so is hopey still around ? because i have one thats been in the box for awhile and i need to sell it but it needs to be sent back to hopey to be recentered. what do you guys think it's worth in this condition ? ...ralph
    Google is your friend!

  44. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by big_slacker
    Sportbikes are generally in the 400 lb range and MX less. Modern DH bikes are more and more similar to dirt bikes and I think the relevance is certainly there when you reach higher speeds through rough stuff.
    the .000001% market share is enough, i suppose.

  45. #95
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    Can you adjust the amount of damping on these things?

    If not, well thats just silly, if so, then you should be able to adjust the damping to your liking/conditions.

  46. #96
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    yeah, there's a dial on top. you can turn it off entirely, as well.

  47. #97
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    How's the damper holding up Nate?

  48. #98
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    Old thread revision, looking for long term use reports. Are any of the original posters to this page still using their Hopey? If not, why? How has it held up?

  49. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Cobb View Post
    Old thread revision, looking for long term use reports. Are any of the original posters to this page still using their Hopey? If not, why? How has it held up?
    I'm still using one of three that I had installed on our bikes a number of years ago. The two that are no longer in use were sold along with the bikes upon which they were installed and, so far as I know, they're still in use.

    The only issue I've had with the one on my bike was that the bottom portion of it came loose from the steerer tube one time. It was easy to fix; it's likely that I didn't tighten it adequately to begin with. (On that particular fork, it's difficult to access the tightening nut.)

    My wife was using one of the dampers. I built her a new bike which used a headset that wasn't compatible with the Hopey damper. When she started riding her new bike, she immediately noticed and missed the damper. (She's adapted though.)

  50. #100
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    Back from the dead!

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