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  1. #1
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    Fox air forks - Modifying volume to get full travel?

    Hi there,

    I own a 2008 Fox F120 fork that i've been riding for the past 6 months for primarily XC and trail riding. I weigh around 67kg and when i first used the fork, could only get about 100mm of travel out of it regardless of sag setup.

    After reading magazines and forums about others having similar issues, i decided to modify the push rod length in the air spring side of the fork in order to increase the volume and reduce the forks inherent progressiveness.

    I cut about 20mm off the top of the push rod, with the DIY article suggesting up to 30mm could be severed.
    The fork has been a lot more plush since the modification, though there's still another 10mm of travel to be had.
    I'm thinking of taking the push rod out and cutting some more to get a bit more volume.

    Im just interested to see if anyone else has performed this sort of modification and if so what sort of results they had.
    Im pretty sure that i can get full travel out of this fork, but id like to hear others experiences before i go hacking into its internals again

    Cheers,
    Wil

    FYI, the article about the modification was published in an Australian MTB magazine.

  2. #2
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    A guy in Finland modified a -07 Fox float 140 mm, see pictures:

    http://suksiseppo.pinkbike.com/album/Huoltoa/

  3. #3
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    Another possibility...

    Where is the schrader valve for your fork? What about adding a remote volume device of some kind...maybe even something adjustable. Risse makes or made this little doodad. It can be used for shocks or forks. It is just a chamber that has its own valve to add or release air. Its volume can be adjusted much like the piggyback on many modern rear shocks. I post this just to provide another angle on the issue. One could even make their own simple device with a fixed volume to suit their needs. Any attached or hosed remote device could creatively be fastened to some part of the fork or frame as long as there is a decently accessible air valve. Dirt motorcycles did something like this a long time ago. If added volume is desired, something along this vein might be better than hacking into the internals of your fork. This or something similar could be removed if you sell the fork later without any difficulties.
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  4. #4
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    Thanks for posting this info.
    I have a 2006 f100 RLT that I can only get 80mm of travel out of. I think I'll be trying this modification soon.

  5. #5
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    Make sure your dampener side is not overfull. I have a 2007 F100 RLC only getting 80mm and that was the problem. To correct it I unthreaded the the top of the damper assembly, released all the air from the air spring side, compressed the fork all the way, extracted oil until under the threads, reassembled. Works perfect & has full travel now.

  6. #6
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    If there is too much oil in the damper side, then if you let out all the air from the spring side, the fork will still not compress all the way, even with without air in the fork.

    However, if the damping side has the correct oil levels, then you should be able to compress the fork all the way without any air in the fork.

    If this is the case but you are still finding the fork isn't using all the travel, then its likely to do with the forks volume in relation to your bodyweight.

    Correct me if im wrong.

    cheers

  7. #7
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    Thanks guys.
    I'll be trying the oil level thing first and if that doesn't do it I'll try rod trimming mod.
    The fork works great except for the limited travel.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Willy
    If there is too much oil in the damper side, then if you let out all the air from the spring side, the fork will still not compress all the way, even with without air in the fork.

    However, if the damping side has the correct oil levels, then you should be able to compress the fork all the way without any air in the fork.

    If this is the case but you are still finding the fork isn't using all the travel, then its likely to do with the forks volume in relation to your bodyweight.

    Correct me if im wrong.

    cheers

    You are correct.

    I've never owned a fork that got 100% of its advertised travel at recommended sag.
    Usable travel and advertised travel are differant animals for us light riders.

  9. #9
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    Yeah I agree about the never getting full tarvel out of a fork before but missing one out of 4 inches seems excessive.
    That said this Fox is soo much better than the SID's I've had in the past its ridiculous.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Willy
    If there is too much oil in the damper side, then if you let out all the air from the spring side, the fork will still not compress all the way, even with without air in the fork.

    However, if the damping side has the correct oil levels, then you should be able to compress the fork all the way without any air in the fork.

    If this is the case but you are still finding the fork isn't using all the travel, then its likely to do with the forks volume in relation to your bodyweight.

    Correct me if im wrong.

    cheers
    Correct, that is how I determined the dampener was over full. The Fox web site documents F100/F90 RLC/RL/R all have an oil volume of 155ml. This is incorrect because the RLC dampener cartridge has more components, than the RL, that take up more volume thus the necessity for less oil. I contacted Fox after repairing my fork and the technician agreed with my conclusion.
    It is also very common to over fill the damper when servicing the fork. The damper cartridge retains oil, if not evacuated, and the fork will be way over full when the recommended oil volume is added.

    Prost

  11. #11
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    also, removing some of the lubrication oil from the air chamber should free up enough volume for u to get u full travel, it will also make the air spring a bit less progressive...be sure to leave about 1cc (5cc is stock) in though to keep everything running smoothly

    i would check the oil levels and remove some lubricating oil out of the air chamber before i would go ahead with the mod
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  12. #12
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    Well Push actually has a high volume kit for the float forks which I imagine they are doing similar to what you are doing because obviously they cant add the volume through diameter.

    Also to the poster above the RL and RLC dampers are very similar to each other it is just the top pison or valving (the compression piston inside the top cap) that is different. The RLS had an adjustable orifice (port) for the low speed compression where as the RL all the orifices (ports) are a fixed size.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jesse Hill
    Well Push actually has a high volume kit for the float forks which I imagine they are doing similar to what you are doing because obviously they cant add the volume through diameter.

    Also to the poster above the RL and RLC dampers are very similar to each other it is just the top pison or valving (the compression piston inside the top cap) that is different. The RLS had an adjustable orifice (port) for the low speed compression where as the RL all the orifices (ports) are a fixed size.
    The RLC has low-speed compression & lockout force adjustment. The lockout force adjustment internal workings is what displaces more oil in the RLC fork.

  14. #14
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    I've just checked my fork under full compression without air in the spring and it compresses all the way, so i can safely assume i need to increase the volume rather than modify the damping oil levels - though i will refill the forks after i do the mod and check them anyway.

    As for taking out some of the lubricating oil from on top of the piston, i only have about 3cc in there at the moment, and i think i will need substantially more volume to achieve full travel.
    If i end up cutting off too much, then i can always add float fluid on top of the piston to decrease the volume.

    I'll report back once i've done the mod (V.2)
    thanks for the help.

    Wil

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jacobus
    The RLC has low-speed compression & lockout force adjustment. The lockout force adjustment internal workings is what displaces more oil in the RLC fork.
    Ah forgot about that. Not sure if it really takes up too much more though as it is just an adjustable preload spring on the base valve and I cannot remember of the top of my head but I thought the RL still had the blow off it was just set tight and not adjustable but there was still relief so the cart wouldnt blow. I cant picture it though its been a few months since I had one apart.

  16. #16
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    Just an update:

    i've just put the fork back together this evening after cutting an additional 10mm off the piston rod to increase the air volume.
    Will get out tomorrow to see if the fork has improved and will write back.

    cheers

  17. #17
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    Fairly brief ride today but i can already tell the difference; fork is much more linear in action now.
    Im getting pretty much all the travel now and the fork feels smoother.

    FWIW im putting 70psi in the fork, whereas i had 65psi in before and 60 psi when i had the fork new.

    Highly recommend this mod if you arent reaching full travel of your fork!
    cheers,
    wil

  18. #18
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    Kudos to you for having the moxie to take a hacksaw to such an expensive component!

    I felt brave just servicing the thing...

    jeff

  19. #19
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    Did this mod to 36 float

    A few months ago I cut 20mm and redrilled my Float 36 air piston control rod. It's very simple and easy modification that provides immediate results. On normal rides my average full travel went from 5" to 5 3/4". The most travel I have used post mod is 6" so there still is 1/3" for the OH Sh!T I went off that wrong move. Besides warrenty I can think of no down side to this mod for my useage...
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  20. #20
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    howsabout on a 100mm?

    i have a float r 100mm; thinking i can get 120mm ? can i do this mod on this fork?

    I'm thinking fox did not make a 100mm and a 120mmm float?
    who would know...push, fox, ?

  21. #21
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    Will not help you 100mm getmore than 100mm

    ecoast, in a word NO. This helps you get full travel or close to the full speced travel of the fork

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Willy
    Just an update:

    i've just put the fork back together this evening after cutting an additional 10mm off the piston rod to increase the air volume.
    Will get out tomorrow to see if the fork has improved and will write back.

    cheers
    Are you noticing brake dive and lack of mid stroke support symptom since the mod?
    sth

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by HoJo
    ecoast, in a word NO. This helps you get full travel or close to the full speced travel of the fork

    So you think fox made float in 100mm, 120mm, 130mm an, as well as 140mm?
    That's alot of separate parts for essentially the same thing...

    ...personally find it hard to believe my 100mm is not a longer travel model w/ spacers in it...was hoping someone would know, but looks like I'll have to pull it apart to find out.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by HoJo
    A few months ago I cut 20mm and redrilled my Float 36 air piston control rod. It's very simple and easy modification that provides immediate results. On normal rides my average full travel went from 5" to 5 3/4". The most travel I have used post mod is 6" so there still is 1/3" for the OH Sh!T I went off that wrong move. Besides warrenty I can think of no down side to this mod for my useage...
    HoJo
    Interesting mod. It is my understanding the part of the reason the 36's don't get full travel is that the bottom-out resistance is set firm at the factory. Changing it to med or light gives additional travel. How much I don't know.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by ecoast
    So you think fox made float in 100mm, 120mm, 130mm an, as well as 140mm?
    That's alot of separate parts for essentially the same thing...

    ...personally find it hard to believe my 100mm is not a longer travel model w/ spacers in it...was hoping someone would know, but looks like I'll have to pull it apart to find out.
    You're correct that Fox makes one air piston rod for all model forks. Your fork probably doesn't have spacers in it, but the rod will have holes in it so that you could push the pin out of the negative spring stop and move the stop, thus changing the travel. Moving the stop to the holes closer to the piston head will increase the travel. Moving the stop the other way reduces the travel.

    One thing to make note of: Depending on the model year of your fork, your damper (right leg stuff) might not be long enough for you to increase the travel to 120mm. I have a '03 Float that can only go to 100mm because the damper isn't long enough.

    A by-product of increasing the travel is the air chamber size is increased as well. A Float at 140mm will act more linearly in it's travel than one set at 80mm, which makes sense.

    The mod described in this thread is a way of increasing the air chamber size without increasing the travel of the fork, making it more linear at that given travel.

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  26. #26
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    Hi All, does anyone have a link to the mod as described by Little Willy? Cheers, Steve

  27. #27
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    To Singletrack Hound - Yes. With the fork set up as it was before the mod, there is a marginal increase in brake dive from the fork.
    However, i have dialled in 2 more clicks of LSC damping which has reduced the dive, yet the fork is still plusher than what it was before.

    As for a link Stevo, i followed the instructions out of an article in Mountain Biking Australia, though i've since lost the magazine and couldnt tell you which month.

    Are you familiar with taking apart fox forks?
    If you are, the actual mod is pretty simple, just remove the piston rod from the air spring side, push the pin out of the piston head and the negative spring collar and remove all the pieces from the rod.
    Measure the distance that the top hole is from the top of the rod as well as the hole diameter.
    With a fine tooth hacksaw, cut between 20-30mm of length off the rod, then drill a new hole at the top of the rod in the same location as the original piston-head hole.
    Assemble the pieces back onto the rod.

    The actual cutting/drilling process i had done by a local machining shop and cost me $25 (Aus) but it is absolutely perfect and much better than what i could have done.

    wil

  28. #28
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    I just did this mod and wow.
    My f120 feels excellent, it feels 5 times better then it did before.
    The fork feels more tunable.

  29. #29
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    Does anyone have their air piston on the block for this? I could really use the dimensions for a 140mm version. I'm looking for the total air piston assembly length and the spots where the negative spring is set to.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by pipes10
    also, removing some of the lubrication oil from the air chamber should free up enough volume for u to get u full travel, it will also make the air spring a bit less progressive...be sure to leave about 1cc (5cc is stock) in though to keep everything running smoothly

    i would check the oil levels and remove some lubricating oil out of the air chamber before i would go ahead with the mod


    Tired this on my Fox F120RL fork . I took the spring cap off drained oil into a cup. Replaced enough oil to cover the air spring . Gained more than half inch of travel thanks for the tip .

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by jackab1
    Tired this on my Fox F120RL fork . I took the spring cap off drained oil into a cup. Replaced enough oil to cover the air spring . Gained more than half inch of travel thanks for the tip .

    This may be stupid question but do you remove the air first prior to removing some of the fluid in the air side of fork?

    Also how do you know when the oil fills the air spring? Should there be no air in the fork and then lift the fork so it is completely sprung up and then just fill so it covers or how is the advice here?
    Last edited by gigabyte772; 06-22-2009 at 09:20 AM.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by gigabyte772
    This may be stupid question but do you remove the air first prior to removing some of the fluid in the air side of fork?

    Also how do you know when the oil fills the air spring? Should there be no air in the fork and then lift the fork so it is completely sprung up and then just fill so it covers or how is the advice here?
    If you dont remove the air first, the top cap will be pressurized and shoot out at you when you try to unscrew it. So you should definitely let the air out.

    You need enough lubrication in the air chamber to keep the seals wet so they hold air. You can use as little as you'd like - the limit is the point where the fork won't hold air. I usually cover the top cap with the thick fox float fluid, that seems to do the trick.
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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Berkley
    If you dont remove the air first, the top cap will be pressurized and shoot out at you when you try to unscrew it. So you should definitely let the air out.

    You need enough lubrication in the air chamber to keep the seals wet so they hold air. You can use as little as you'd like - the limit is the point where the fork won't hold air. I usually cover the top cap with the thick fox float fluid, that seems to do the trick.


    Yes remove the air . I should have said air piston instead of air spring . With the oil drained you can clearly see the top of the air piston . Just add enough to cover top of piston . Also with the air out the fork will collapse making the air piston very easy to see .

  34. #34
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    2007 F100RLC
    Cut it (5mm)
    Result: More sag with same psi, to squishy and same travel as before.
    Fix: Ordered a new air piston assembly; $45 from Fox.
    Sometimes your the windshield, sometimes the bug.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jacobus
    2007 F100RLC
    Cut it (5mm)
    Result: More sag with same psi, to squishy and same travel as before.
    Fix: Ordered a new air piston assembly; $45 from Fox.
    Sometimes your the windshield, sometimes the bug.
    So did you try increasing the pressure to reduce sag and make it less squishy?

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stevo the Devo
    So did you try increasing the pressure to reduce sag and make it less squishy?
    Of course, 15mm - 20mm - 25mm.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Willy
    If there is too much oil in the damper side, then if you let out all the air from the spring side, the fork will still not compress all the way, even with without air in the fork.

    However, if the damping side has the correct oil levels, then you should be able to compress the fork all the way without any air in the fork.

    If this is the case but you are still finding the fork isn't using all the travel, then its likely to do with the forks volume in relation to your bodyweight.

    Correct me if im wrong.

    cheers
    I'm only getting 105mm out of 120 (there's room for 127mm though on the stanchion). Took all the air out and got a full 120-122mm of travel. So this would seem to indicate the damper side is not overfilled, which is good.

    So I did the simplest "mod" first and took about 2-3cc's out of the air side top fluid (not main body fluid). It's the thick green fluid. I guess this is the "Fox Float Fluid". I can see how 5cc is considered too much by many here, since when I let all the air out, oil was even shooting out of the air valve for a split second. 5cc isn't much by itself, but that volume above the air piston gets small at full compression, and that 5cc becomes quite a bit. Hopefully I didn't take out too much. The air piston was still well fully covered when I screwed the top cap back after taking out 2-3cc's worth.

    I'll have to test it out on the trail this week. I did the work at my work's shop and there are no features around big enough to get full compression. And it's raining and I have eggbeaters with my cycling shoes being at home, so was not a good day to try out. I'll be riding on the weekend so we'll see how removing some float fluid affects the travel. As a last resort, I'll cut that rod a few mm, but that's a bit more involved - I may wait until riding season is done.


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  38. #38
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    It's a good mod because you can undo it very easily by simply adding more Float fluid. Add 1 additional CC of Float fluid for every mm of shaft you remove.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by MI_canuck
    So I did the simplest "mod" first and took about 2-3cc's out of the air side top fluid (not main body fluid).
    I've done the similar many moons ago. I used very little Float fluid on inside the air chamber. Stroke the fork many times and dumped the rest out. Bascially enuff to the coat the inside the stanchion. That didn't do much for me.
    sth

  40. #40
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    Well I'm not holding my breath, but it was a harmless first attempt... Rod surgery might be next if this doesn't do it...

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  41. #41
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    Just out of curiosity - are you guys running 25% sag, or some other value? I'm noticing when tuning via sag, I need waaaaay less pressure than the "chart" shown in the owner's manual on Fox's service section of their website. I'm about 185-190lbs geared up, and per that weight, recommended pressure is 95psi. Well with 95psi, I only get 15% sag (around 18mm). So gonna try just by sag, chart be damned... To get 25% sag on my F120, I had to lower the pressure down to 60psi which seems crazy low to me...

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  42. #42
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    Are you measuring sag seated or standing?

  43. #43
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    i was doing it seated, but was also not quite at 30mm, was at 27mm... I'll remeasure standing and see how it pans out...

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  44. #44
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    Standing and pushing on the bar? Would you care to elaborate the logic behind it?

  45. #45
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    Standing and pushing on the bar? Would you care to elaborate the logic behind it?
    Logic being

    When you set your front sag do it in the standing attack position as this is the postion you should be riding in most of the time. If you set the front whilst seated, when you ride correctly it will be out.

    PS - I set my rear whilst seated.
    cheers
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  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by MI_canuck
    Just out of curiosity - are you guys running 25% sag, or some other value? I'm noticing when tuning via sag, I need waaaaay less pressure than the "chart" shown in the owner's manual on Fox's service section of their website. I'm about 185-190lbs geared up, and per that weight, recommended pressure is 95psi. Well with 95psi, I only get 15% sag (around 18mm). So gonna try just by sag, chart be damned... To get 25% sag on my F120, I had to lower the pressure down to 60psi which seems crazy low to me...
    I have to run 10psi less than what Fox recommends to get 25% sag. Even than I never get last 1/2-3/4" travel.

    I weigh 165lbs geard up and run 50-55psi.
    sth

  47. #47
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    Oh standing on the pedal in attack position, then? I thought you guys were just casually standing on the floor leaning on the bar to measure a sag. How would that be possible, you know. Hahaha. Thanks for the clarification.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by SingleTrackHound
    I have to run 10psi less than what Fox recommends to get 25% sag. Even than I never get last 1/2-3/4" travel.

    I weigh 165lbs geard up and run 50-55psi.
    yeah i'm realising the Fox charts don't jive with what pressue my bike needs to get 25% sag... I'm at 60psi in the F120 now, and still not quite 25% (30mm).. maybe about 27mm (22.5%)... but i'll re-measure it standing...

    based on your weight and psi, my 60psi makes sense (based on 185lbs geared up)

    i'm still not sure i'll be able to reach full 120mm of travel, but i'll find out next time I ride...

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    There will be folks who thinks having inch of reserve travel is good thing. Perhaps. Maybe one day I'll do a front heavy 10 ft flat landng drop to see if I'll use all my travel on my Fox xc fork...not.
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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by SingleTrackHound
    I've done the similar many moons ago. I used very little Float fluid on inside the air chamber. Stroke the fork many times and dumped the rest out. Bascially enuff to the coat the inside the stanchion. That didn't do much for me.
    Removing some of the oil from on top of the air piston worked for me. With about 2cc I could easily get all the travel dropping in on ledges and step downs around 2-3'. I think my fork is a 2007 float RL @130mm travel. What year and travel is yours?

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by thebronze
    Removing some of the oil from on top of the air piston worked for me. With about 2cc I could easily get all the travel dropping in on ledges and step downs around 2-3'. I think my fork is a 2007 float RL @130mm travel. What year and travel is yours?
    what sag are you set to? what psi?

    mine is a 2008 F120 RL... i would assume similar internals... i removed about 3cc, so about 2cc left... have yet to get full travel, but have not ridden it yet with lowering my psi/increasing sag (was at ~15% sag, now trying 25% - which on my fork is about 65psi)

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    Quote Originally Posted by thebronze
    What year and travel is yours?
    03 or 04 Float RLC 100mm travel. It's pretty much my backup fork these dayz.
    sth

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    I'm a fat dude (235 lbs) and I too am running a lot less PSI than the manual recomends. I think it recommends somewhere around 115 to 120 psi. I'm running between 80 and 90 most of the time.

    I did the travel mod and I definitly use the bulk of my travel on normal trail rides now. I'm really close to bottoming only on the biggest drops (which isn't much for me). I think it is perfect now for what I do.

  54. #54
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    Well I rode a rougher trail today that works the suspension a lot more - was running 62psi in the fork... Bike felt great! Actually managed to get 116mm or travel out of it today (out of 120mm). So getting *almost* full travel - enough so to be content with that and without having to cut the air piston rod. The only thing I did was remove some float fluid - I've got about 2cc left in the fork, and set the sag properly (was going by the weight-pressure charts before, but they are way off compared to actually measuring for 25%.... the chart suggested 95psi for my weight range, but I'm all the way down to 62psi...)... Didn't have any harsh bottom outs or anything strange. Fork just soaked up everything nicely.

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  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by SingleTrackHound
    03 or 04 Float RLC 100mm travel. It's pretty much my backup fork these dayz.
    Sorry to hear that, maybe at 100mm the air chamber is smaller and more progressive.....

  56. #56
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    So how much should I chop on my Float 140?
    Was 20 or 30mm the concensus?

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    Start with 10mm and see how you like it. If you want more, go to 20mm.

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    been following this thread at the recommendation of Bad Mechanic. I wasn't getting full travel in my 140 Float RL 2009.

    I weight 190 (usually 180-185, but it is holiday season).

    1. Emptied air to see if right leg had to much oil (sure enough I get just over 5.5" with NO air, so over filled on right side isn't problem.

    2. Took out about 3.5 ml of float fluid on left side (3ml wasn't enough)

    3. Decreased pressure from 90# to 80#

    This gives me 1 1/2" preload (which is about 27%), and almost 5 1/4" of travel (measured by riding the bike and bouncing up and down, up and down almost like bunny hoping). This sounds about right, probably means that when I hit a 4' drop or I am going down a hill with front brakes on and hit a really drastic compression at the bottom, I will get the full 5.5" or travel, or close to it.

  59. #59
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    interesting stuff... must try it

  60. #60
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    This is a great mod not only do I now get full travel but the overall feel of the fork is night and day difference and with a higher air pressure close to what Fox recommends for my weight
    My fork also came with way too much oil in the air chamber so first i removed that put in 3 ml and tired it
    I cut 10mm off on my 08 36mm float rc2 which seems to be perfect for me
    It might get a little steep from here

  61. #61
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    Anybody do this mod on a 2010 FOX F29 120 Fit? Experiences?
    How much should I cut off the air piston rod to see good results?

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    Start with 10mm. If it's too much, you can always add oil to make up for it.

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    16cc fluid in the air chamber?

    This may be old to you but it was new to me and this is my first dive into a fork...I bought a 2008 F120RL off the forum at a reasonable price. Put it on the bike and only got about 3" of travel (me 150#). Went to remove the fox fluid from the air spring side per this thread. Got to the cap w/valve (after removing all the air) and it was on just a little more than finger tight. Opened it up and the chamber was just about full w/fluid with the fork fully compressed. I removed 16mL or 16cc (if I did the conversion right) from the air chamber. The fluid is really viscous (95 degrees here) and pine green. So I'm wondering what I'm dealing with here. A leak from the lower leg into the air chamber? An unknown newbie mechanic that filled it w/fox fluid or even just 7wt.

    I guess I could just rebuild (maybe not that brave yet) but I'm requesting shock oracle wisdom. So what do you think?

    This interweb thing is pretty amazing place to learn stuff!

  64. #64
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    There's no leak from the air chamber to the lowers. If there were, you'd have air pressure problems. Plus, on the air side there should be only 30ml of fluid in the lowers anyway. Not many chances for that oil to make it up that high.

    Given how overfilled the air chamber was, I'd rebuild the whole fork if I was you. There might be too much oil in the damper side as well, causing the fork to hydrolock at 3" (hydrolocking is when the damper is overfilled and too much fluid causes the fork to lock up).
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    Gonna bring this thread back again for some more answers.

    I have a 2008 140mm Talas RLC and I'm getting about 4.75" (120.65mm) travel from it instead of the advertised 5.5" of travel. If I remove all the air I can get the full 140mm of travel with a slight bounce on the forks (they don't just colapse all the way by themselves) so I'm thinking to much fluid perhaps on the air spring side.

    Does the removal of the fluid from the top of the air spring side apply to a Talas fork also? If so is there anything I need to know about the Talas before removing that top cap to remove oil? Don't want to get in there and mess something up as I know these are complicated inside. Other than the travel issue the fork and Talas feature are working fine and have never leaked a drop on me.

    Oh, the Fox sag pressure is also way off for me. I'm using a pressure that's speced on the Fox site for someone 30lbs lighter than me. I tend to go more by small bump compliance and brake dive than a rigid sag % though.
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  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by skidad
    Does the removal of the fluid from the top of the air spring side apply to a Talas fork also? If so is there anything I need to know about the Talas before removing that top cap to remove oil?
    No.

    Talas and Float are completely different things.


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    What about standard F-Series forks? I'm assuming there is no "Float Fluid" in the left leg? I'm a long-time Rock Shox user just now setting up my first Fox (2009 F120 RLC) and I was surprised at how hard I had to work to even get 100mm of the 120mm travel, and I'm 200+ too. I haven't tried emptying the air to see if it's a fluid issue, but assuming it's not, any other suggestions? Maybe I just need to let more air out...seems like their tables are out. I started off running around 120psi and quickly dropped it down to around 105psi, which is where it is now. Maybe I'll go down some more and see what I get.

  68. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by JOwens14
    What about standard F-Series forks? I'm assuming there is no "Float Fluid" in the left leg? I'm a long-time Rock Shox user just now setting up my first Fox (2009 F120 RLC) and I was surprised at how hard I had to work to even get 100mm of the 120mm travel, and I'm 200+ too. I haven't tried emptying the air to see if it's a fluid issue, but assuming it's not, any other suggestions? Maybe I just need to let more air out...seems like their tables are out. I started off running around 120psi and quickly dropped it down to around 105psi, which is where it is now. Maybe I'll go down some more and see what I get.
    The F-series and Float use identical air springs, and the F-series absolutely uses Float Fluid in the air spring housed in the left leg.

  69. #69
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    So then, if I relieve all of the air and find that I am not getting full travel - I should take out all but 2cc of Float oil from the top of the left leg?

  70. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by JOwens14
    So then, if I relieve all of the air and find that I am not getting full travel - I should take out all but 2cc of Float oil from the top of the left leg?
    That's the way I understand it from this thread but I'm not sure. I emptied mine and am missing a good 1 1/4" or so of travel. I'm about to replace the seals anyway so I'm going to try this and see how it affects the travel. If it doesn't affect it, I might try the other method from the Aussie magazine. I have a 120RL.
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    I removed a few cc's of fluid from my 09 F120 RL and got a little bit more travel, but not much. I ended up doing the travel mod on mine and now I get full travel.

    Just an FYI, I weigh about 235, I am running 90 psi in my fork.

  72. #72
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    I have an F29 32.

    I have 3.3" of Gold Stuff from the fork seals to the crown.
    Apparent suspension is 1.6"

    WHAT THE F!!@#$%

    Damned the man!

  73. #73
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    Something to make a note of when you guys are cutting and drilling the piston rod: Drill the hole square! Mine was off by a hair and the piston was tilted ever so slightly causing stiction caused by the plastic piston rubbing the inside of the stanchion. I rode around like that for a year thinking something was wrong but never got around to checking it out.
    Well, I fixed it 3 weeks back and it's now buttery smooth.

  74. #74
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    Ok I'm going to bring this back one more time.

    Bike setup: Fox Float 150 RL 15mm/QR

    I get about 4.5-5 inches at best on harsh hits where I lean into my fork. I'm running about 50 PSI. I weight 155 lbs with gear.

    1. Any less air pressure and the fork starts to "sag" without any weight on it! 45 is the very minimum according to Fox's recommendations. I realize my cheap fork pump may be inaccurate, which leads me to believe I'm running closer to 45-48 psi.

    2. When I let out all the air, i have to push hard and jump on the fork whilst holding the air bleed valve on my pump, and it only compresses about 144-146mm. I recently had the fork rebuilt. The crown does not touch the seal. I called Fox and they said this is NORMAL. In fact, if the seal could touch the crown, something is off, according to Fox customer service.



    I am aware of the mod discussed above. I have a lost much performance from the fork in order to get additional travel, yet am still not getting full travel. Do I have the symptoms of too much oil in the right/rebound leg?

    I have let out a little float fluid by cycling the air in and out of the fork, a good amount came out through the air bleed valve on my shock.

    Where do I start? The fork feels plush and sags about 2" under full weight, dives hard under braking. I could use more air, but then of course I'd get less travel even still. Aside from cutting the air piston shaft down, does it appear my fork was rebuild IMPROPERLY w/ too much oil? Last season, I recall getting all but the last 10 mm of travel while riding downhill specific trails. That is good for me. But, I cannot fully compress the fork those last 10mm now. I had never released all the air up until this point. Do people actually get the seal to touch the crown to assess whether or not there is too much oil?

  75. #75
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    I would say that if it definitly has less travel than it did before the rebuild, then yes, too much oil in the dampner cartridge. That is exactly how mine behaved when I over filled mine recently.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by TNC View Post
    Where is the schrader valve for your fork? What about adding a remote volume device of some kind...maybe even something adjustable. Risse makes or made this little doodad. It can be used for shocks or forks. It is just a chamber that has its own valve to add or release air. Its volume can be adjusted much like the piggyback on many modern rear shocks. I post this just to provide another angle on the issue. One could even make their own simple device with a fixed volume to suit their needs. Any attached or hosed remote device could creatively be fastened to some part of the fork or frame as long as there is a decently accessible air valve. Dirt motorcycles did something like this a long time ago. If added volume is desired, something along this vein might be better than hacking into the internals of your fork. This or something similar could be removed if you sell the fork later without any difficulties.

    I like that, don't just connect it though, take the valve core out of your fork to speed up the air flow between the 2 then nice way to make your bike have a higher volume more linear stroke, hmmmm!!!

    Where could I purchase 1 of those ??

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by xjrides View Post
    Ok I'm going to bring this back one more time.

    Bike setup: Fox Float 150 RL 15mm/QR

    I get about 4.5-5 inches at best on harsh hits where I lean into my fork. I'm running about 50 PSI. I weight 155 lbs with gear.

    1. Any less air pressure and the fork starts to "sag" without any weight on it! 45 is the very minimum according to Fox's recommendations. I realize my cheap fork pump may be inaccurate, which leads me to believe I'm running closer to 45-48 psi.

    2. When I let out all the air, i have to push hard and jump on the fork whilst holding the air bleed valve on my pump, and it only compresses about 144-146mm. I recently had the fork rebuilt. The crown does not touch the seal. I called Fox and they said this is NORMAL. In fact, if the seal could touch the crown, something is off, according to Fox customer service.



    I am aware of the mod discussed above. I have a lost much performance from the fork in order to get additional travel, yet am still not getting full travel. Do I have the symptoms of too much oil in the right/rebound leg?

    I have let out a little float fluid by cycling the air in and out of the fork, a good amount came out through the air bleed valve on my shock.

    Where do I start? The fork feels plush and sags about 2" under full weight, dives hard under braking. I could use more air, but then of course I'd get less travel even still. Aside from cutting the air piston shaft down, does it appear my fork was rebuild IMPROPERLY w/ too much oil? Last season, I recall getting all but the last 10 mm of travel while riding downhill specific trails. That is good for me. But, I cannot fully compress the fork those last 10mm now. I had never released all the air up until this point. Do people actually get the seal to touch the crown to assess whether or not there is too much oil?

    Too much oil is easy to test, just let all of the air out and check you can get full travel, if you can then it's not oil.

    Cutting the fork down inside will make the travel more linear which should help you, but I think it will also increase the preload on the Negative coil, meaning it will sink into its travel even more than it is currently.

    Put some weight on or ride with a really heavy back pack

  78. #78
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    @ Turveyd:

    I have read 100 times to "let all the air out and see if you can get full travel". Does this mean you can get the seal of the fork to touch the upper crown with NO STANCHION showing?


    As I stated, I can push and push to get it down to where is a littl emor than 4-6 mm left of stanchion showing and it will not go further. Does this indicate too much oil? It will compress 144-146 mm roughly, and NO more. Do you guys get all the way 100% compressed?

  79. #79
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    Measure where 100mm's is from forks inflated, remember it'll sag a bit with all the air out and go for that amount of travel, 4- 6 mm's sounds about right for a fox from vague memory so that seems fine.

    I think for your weight, you need to do the cutting of the inner piston thingy and find a lighter / shorter maybe coil that will fit for the negative, think thats the only way you'll solve it for full travel.

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by xjrides View Post
    @ Turveyd:

    I have read 100 times to "let all the air out and see if you can get full travel". Does this mean you can get the seal of the fork to touch the upper crown with NO STANCHION showing?
    i dont think the crown of the fork is supposed to touch the wipers (seals) when compressed fully. That was stated earlier in this thread.

  81. #81
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    I drained 10ml of float fluid off the top of my Fox F100 RL and replaced it with around 1.5ml; just enough to cover the entire piston. I've been getting full travel now and the fork feels much more linear. I'm running way below the recommended psi though. Around 65psi for my 150-160ish body I like it plush.
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    5 of 5 post to fulfill my posting obligations inj order to post my own thread. Stupid rule!

  83. #83
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    I have been using an external air can on about 7 of my mountain bikes and have enjoyed the extra air chamber and the full travel of my forks. I thought i would try the air piston shaft mod. on the next bike i built for me. A Titus motolite ti. I have a Fox 2009 float rl 140 that i installed on this bike. I opened up the fork and cut 20mm off of the air piston shaft, completed the rebuild and didn't notice that much more travel addition compared to my other bikes that have the external air can. I am going to go back in the fork and cut another 10mm off of the air piston shaft and remove one of the bottom out springs (there is a long spring and inside it there is a shorter spring) that i want to remove to try and get all of the 140mm's of travel. If that doesn't get the travel i want i will then add an external air can to this fork. Will post results this week. Thanks for the great suggestion about the air piston shaft mod.

  84. #84
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    where are you sourcing your air cans from?

  85. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by doralswheels View Post
    I have been using an external air can on about 7 of my mountain bikes and have enjoyed the extra air chamber and the full travel of my forks. I thought i would try the air piston shaft mod. on the next bike i built for me. A Titus motolite ti. I have a Fox 2009 float rl 140 that i installed on this bike. I opened up the fork and cut 20mm off of the air piston shaft, completed the rebuild and didn't notice that much more travel addition compared to my other bikes that have the external air can. I am going to go back in the fork and cut another 10mm off of the air piston shaft and remove one of the bottom out springs (there is a long spring and inside it there is a shorter spring) that i want to remove to try and get all of the 140mm's of travel. If that doesn't get the travel i want i will then add an external air can to this fork. Will post results this week. Thanks for the great suggestion about the air piston shaft mod.
    Don't remove the spring. The long one is you negative spring and has no affect deeper in your travel, and will make the fork less responsive over smaller stuff.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by rupps5 View Post
    where are you sourcing your air cans from?
    I get mine from ForkACE

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by bad mechanic View Post
    Don't remove the spring. The long one is you negative spring and has no affect deeper in your travel, and will make the fork less responsive over smaller stuff.
    On my air piston shaft, below the piston there are 2 springs. One is a long spring and a shorter one inside of about half of the length of the longer one. I was thinking of removing the inner short spring.

  88. #88
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    Does anyone know the part number of the air piston shaft and where to buy one?
    Preferably in Australia.

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    I'm interested to hear more about the air can from Forkface. How does it work? How does it perform? I'm not getting full travel on my 2011 FIT RLC. I'm only getting about 100mm. I'm going to try and let out some float fluid this week.

  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmanuel09 View Post
    I'm interested to hear more about the air can from Forkface. How does it work? How does it perform? I'm not getting full travel on my 2011 FIT RLC. I'm only getting about 100mm. I'm going to try and let out some float fluid this week.
    Here is a very good review of the kits that i use. Grams Light Bikes - Mountain Bike and Gear Reviews, and News: Rollonthrottle - Fork Ace High Volume Enhancer

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    Sent from my ADR6300 using Tapatalk

  92. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by doralswheels View Post
    On my air piston shaft, below the piston there are 2 springs. One is a long spring and a shorter one inside of about half of the length of the longer one. I was thinking of removing the inner short spring.
    I decided to not go back into the fork. I just added an external air can kit to my 20mm cut to the air piston shaft. WOW I now have 5.5" of travel with 90lbs of air pressure. This is what i was trying to get done, so i am thru with this fork. Now, i am going to go into another one of my fox forks. A 120mm version. I am going to cut 30mm to start and then if i can't get 120mm of travel, i will go with another air can kit. Will post results when i'm finished.

  93. #93
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    Thought I would check how much float fluid was on top of my air piston before I started cutting anything. I pulled out just over 25cc. I would never of thought it would of been so over filled. I have put back 2cc which easily covers the piston. Testing the forks off my front step got me 134mm of travel at 70psi. Will have to test ride this weekend and see how it goes.

  94. #94
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    can someone tell me that 1 pillow pack of float fluid equals 5cc? I have about half of one left. if I empty the air chamber, is this enough float fluid to pit back in?

  95. #95
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    After pulling out all that extra float fluid (25cc+) I went for a ride today and I used all off my travel . I ran 32mm sag at 70psi. So much nicer and now my rear shock does not bottom out any where near as much now that the front is more balanced to suit the rear.

  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmanuel09 View Post
    if I empty the air chamber, is this enough float fluid to pit back in?
    Yes.

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    i have the same problem with my F120.
    It is very hard to push in the last 1.5" when there is no air in the chamber. I would like to try opening the left chamber and get some fluid out.
    What's the easiest way to do? I don't want to disassemble the whole thing.

  98. #98
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    Take the left cap off after releasing the pressure.

  99. #99
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    if it's in the air chamber, then put some air in the fork turn the fork upside down and press the valve, oil will squirm out fairly rapidly.

    If it's the lower then undo the rear bolt tap the bolt out and put the fork the right way up.

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    is that only the oil volume in the left leg affects the travel?
    Do i need to check the right leg as well?

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