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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Mar 2012

    New question here. Shock upgrade for 2009 Specialized Pitch Comp

    Hi there, I've been having a great time on my 2009 Specialized Pitch Comp for a bit over a year. It's just running the stock Pike 327 and X-Fusion O2R, and I've been thinking about giving the suspension an upgrade, starting with the shock.

    I've figured I'd like to go with either a Monarch RT3 or Monarch Plus RC3. Now I'm interested in getting any advice/opinions about which might be best for me.

    1) TF Tuned Monarch RT3 - US$283 - (high volume, new, 2013)

    2) TF Tuned Monarch Plus RC3 - US$406/US443 - (normal or high volume, new, 2013)

    3) Pinkbike Monarch Plus RC3 - US$330 - (high volume, new, 2013, medium/medium tune, rebuild kit)

    If I buy from TF Tuned they'll set up it for me/my bike/my style (whatever that entails...) and fit the correct mount kits.

    The medium tune on the Pinkbike RC3 is alright, I believe it fits with the Pitch's leverage ratio of ~2.6.

    I'm a very light rider, only 60kg maybe 65 with gear (130-140 pounds). My local is a forest bike park so I do mainly 'trail' riding, with a fair chunk of downhill and drops/gaps up to ~6 foot, although I'm working up my skill/confidence for bigger stuff.

    Will the Plus RC3 be worth the extra 'investment'? If so, will I be fine with the cheaper Pinkbike one or is TFT worth the extra cost? Should I get normal or high volume? Some thoughts on this would be great

    Last edited by rhysjenz; 03-14-2013 at 02:35 PM.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Znarf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    The Monarch plus gets pretty great reviews. If you do a lot of faster stuff you might notice the difference. Also it has a reservoir and more oil volume, for long descents Alps f.e. it might be more heat resistant.

    I'd go for the TFtuned route. Pretty great company.

    Greetings Znarf

  3. #3
    I dig trails!
    Reputation: Mr.P's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    +1 on the TF tuned.

    Do not buy a shock off the shelf. Shocks have internal "tunes" and a specific tuned shock is specced to the linkage dynamics for the suspension to work at it's best. Tune matches to frames is not readily available info - so you'll be guessing.

    TF Tuned will navigate that for you (like getting the low volume air canister needed for that frame - HV = travel blow through)

    That said, I have not had a problem with my non-piggyback air shock on my Enduro riding park, 4500 foot descents, general ass hauling. But everyone is different, and if you are a rock star or have consistent extended descents it might be worth while. My body would get fatigued and I wold stop and take a break well before the shock melted


  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Thanks for your thoughts guys. As it happens, NZ customs crap means I can't really afford the Plus from TF, so I'm pretty much choosing between the RT3 from TFT and the Plus off Pinkbike.

    I gave TFT a call the other day and had a good chat to them about it. Interestingly, the guy there didn't really rate the Plus, reckoned it had a tendency to knock and not give a great ride. Although as Znarf said all I've seen for it is praise...

    He also thought a high volume can would be more ideal for me, which agrees with what I've read/heard from posting elsewhere. Apparently they are better for lighter riders, which I am (~60kg).

    Also, as far as the off-the-shelf/tunes go, all TFTs shocks come with medium rebound damping, and they will adjust the compression damping to suit (or vice versa I can't quite remember ), and potentially adjust the shims if they think it's required. So not exactly like getting it PUSHed, but probably useful.

    To be fair though, the Pinkbike Plus medium/medium tune isn't exactly useless. Looking at a SRAM leverage chart for the Plus, the Pitch's ratio of 2.6 is pretty much bang on for medium tune.

    EDIT: Is the main benefit to the Plus just the extra oil/flow for long descents? I was thinking about it in more a a 'better ride/better for bigger stuff' sense, as most of my downhills are only about 5 minutes (pine forest trail centre, not a mountain ).

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