After 3 outings and multiple runs, I've finally gotten my Intense 951 to a point where I can say its pretty stellar.
I was lost for a while. Most of the info out there were all over the place. I was reading stuff from reviewers and forums, but nothing they said really solved my situation.
And then I saw the light. I was reading the Intense 951 webpage for the Nth time, the 951 doesnt have a manual , and a number jumped at me.
35% sag. 35% sag? 35% sag! ! !
With my two other springs, I was at 25% and 30%. It did not occur to me to try a lighter spring as I was positive I was bottoming even the 500. Mind you, the 500 and 450 worked fine in the rock gardens over at Simi. My problem was that the bike was unwieldy at high speeds.
The forums I was reading were not entirely useless. The last piece of the puzzle was provided by a little nugget I got from a forum. Some guy mentioned that it was almost impossible to get the last half inch stroke. What this told me was that I may have not been actually bottoming the shock. The combination of the abnormally progressive leverage curve of the 951 coupled with a medium density bottom out bumper on my vivid could have been causing a bottom out feeling, even though I was not into the last inch of stroke.
With this info, I slapped on a 400 spring and a soft bottom out bumper on the shock, plus a soft spring on the Fox 40 and went to Big Bear.
It was epic! The bike tracked straight, soaked everything and no bottoming out! 2 clicks of compression on the fork and the bike could slide the rear and sometimes spin out. 3 clicks of LSC and it railed! I really like that it could change character with so little adjustment. I won't bore you with the other things I was able to do with the bike now that its properly sprung.
The important part is that I crushed Cruiser and Miracle Mile and had a great day in Snow Summit! ON TO MAMMOTH!
P.S. I'm actually thinking of using one of those flat bottom out bumpers on the bottom of a Rockshox fork in place of the ones on the Vivid so I can get into that last inch of stroke even more BWAHAHAHAHA!
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