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  1. #1
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    From an XCE to a TNT 5-spot

    So, I did my first ride on my new TNT 5-spot. After the ride I had one overwhelming thought: Wow, my XCE was a GREAT bike.

    I have to admit I was pretty unimpressed. It's definitely better going downhill (a lot better), but I was smacking pedals right and left on rocks and I thought it climbed like crap. It seems like whenever it got steep the rear would squat and the front end would wander. This is with a Reba @ 100-115 so I think the HTA was pretty similar to my XCE. I cranked up the pro-pedal and it seemed to make it squat less, but it also made it harsh.

    I'm hoping it was either

    1) Shock setup
    2) Me having a crap day riding.

    Any advice on setting up the DHX 5 shock? I weigh ~165-170; probably 175+ fully kitted out.

    The main air chamber had ~170 psi
    The other chamber had ~100 psi
    Propedal was set probably 3/4 of the way towards +

    Any setup tips?

    Thanks,
    Dave

  2. #2
    MK_
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    Quote Originally Posted by MightySchmoePong
    So, I did my first ride on my new TNT 5-spot. After the ride I had one overwhelming thought: Wow, my XCE was a GREAT bike.

    I have to admit I was pretty unimpressed. It's definitely better going downhill (a lot better), but I was smacking pedals right and left on rocks and I thought it climbed like crap. It seems like whenever it got steep the rear would squat and the front end would wander. This is with a Reba @ 100-115 so I think the HTA was pretty similar to my XCE. I cranked up the pro-pedal and it seemed to make it squat less, but it also made it harsh.

    I'm hoping it was either

    1) Shock setup
    2) Me having a crap day riding.

    Any advice on setting up the DHX 5 shock? I weigh ~165-170; probably 175+ fully kitted out.

    The main air chamber had ~170 psi
    The other chamber had ~100 psi
    Propedal was set probably 3/4 of the way towards +

    Any setup tips?

    Thanks,
    Dave
    You should try it with a proper fork before making up your mind. Do you have a friend with a Vanilla/Float/Revelation/Pike/Z1/AM1, etc? Who could loan you the fork for a ride or two? I would imagine a 5 Spot with a Reba would ride like shite. I liked mine with a very tall fork.

    _MK
    .
    "No man goes before his time -- unless the boss leaves early."
    -- Marx, Groucho

  3. #3
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    The bike's designed around a 130mm fox fork, you're bound to clatter pedals with a shorter fork. Deffo need to try a 130mm fork first.

  4. #4
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    You are probably relying too much on the Propedal to do the job if it's too harsh.

    I personally found the TNT to be less squaty on climbs than the HL but I also found it to require more spring rate (all this in small quantities)

    Try backing out the PP some and then adding more main spring pressure to your DHX-A...then dial upthe PP as necessary.

    Another thing is a lot of people feel the DHX-A tends to blow thorough it's travel too easily you might want to try compensating by adding another half or even full turn to the bottom-out adjuster. I found on my DHX-C, when I switched to the TNT it was more plush than the HL and a little too soft in mid travel... I tuned that with a quarter turn on BO and it's much nicer w/o being harsh. The DHX-C requires less tuning in this respect so don't go by my numbers. Remember that you should drain the boost valve pressure first so the BO knob is easier to turn, then repressureize it before testing the shock. Whenever you change the bottom-out knob, the BO/boost air volume changes so you need to redo the boost pressure.(You may evn need more or less than before but start with your last value)

    Another suggestion once you get everything else right, if you find you need more than 6 or 7 clicks on the PP knob for anythng, perhaps try some more boost valve pressure to slide the PP window up. You should then only need a few clicks to get the same result.

    So if I haven't confused you:
    1) Add a litte more main spring pressure and back off the PP.
    2) If it's still too soft midstroke but feels pretty good early in the stroke, turn in the Bottom-Out, but redo the boost pressure.
    3)After you get close, if you're using lots of PP clicks, raise the boost pressure and reduce the PP. It'll get the same result, more or less, but it will give make it easier to adjust the PP with fewer click.

    Oh, and get a bigger fork. A Pike Dual-Air 454 is a great complement to the Fox air shocks and it'll let you dial in the height to suit your changing tastes as the bike encourages you to take it to the next level.

    ** Edit... it sounds like you have enough BO, so try revisiting the other things described above. G'Luck!
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  5. #5
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    Yes, pedal strikes I'll buy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Robbz
    The bike's designed around a 130mm fox fork, you're bound to clatter pedals with a shorter fork. Deffo need to try a 130mm fork first.

    But a longer fork will just make the real issues (i.e. squat/wandering while climbing) even worse.

    I also wonder how much of a difference 15 mm will make @ the BB; 1/4 of an inch higher w/ a 130? That's something, but not a huge difference.

    My XCE (w/ 3.6 inches of travel and a 100mm fork) had ~13.25/13.5 inch BB; the 5-spot w/ 5.3 inches of travel has the same BB height. I'd expect to smack the pedals more, I was just shocked at how much more.

    I'm sure I can work around the BB height.

    I'm planning on putting a Revelation on the spot, but I don't want to spend any money on it until I "fix" the climbing issues.


    Dave

  6. #6
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    Thanks!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bikezilla
    You are probably relying too much on the Propedal to do the job if it's too harsh.

    I personally found the TNT to be less squaty on climbs than the HL but I also found it to require more spring rate (all this in small quantities)

    Try backing out the PP some and then adding more main spring pressure to your DHX-A...then dial upthe PP as necessary.

    Another thing is a lot of people feel the DHX-A tends to blow thorough it's travel too easily you might want to try compensating by adding another half or even full turn to the bottom-out adjuster. I found on my DHX-C, when I switched to the TNT it was more plush than the HL and a little too soft in mid travel... I tuned that with a quarter turn on BO and it's much nicer w/o being harsh. The DHX-C requires less tuning in this respect so don't go by my numbers. Remember that you should drain the boost valve pressure first so the BO knob is easier to turn, then repressureize it before testing the shock. Whenever you change the bottom-out knob, the BO/boost air volume changes so you need to redo the boost pressure.(You may evn need more or less than before but start with your last value)

    Another suggestion once you get everything else right, if you find you need more than 6 or 7 clicks on the PP knob for anythng, perhaps try some more boost valve pressure to slide the PP window up. You should then only need a few clicks to get the same result.

    So if I haven't confused you:
    1) Add a litte more main spring pressure and back off the PP.
    2) If it's still too soft midstroke but feels pretty good early in the stroke, turn in the Bottom-Out, but redo the boost pressure.
    3)After you get close, if you're using lots of PP clicks, raise the boost pressure and reduce the PP. It'll get the same result, more or less, but it will give make it easier to adjust the PP with fewer click.

    Oh, and get a bigger fork. A Pike Dual-Air 454 is a great complement to the Fox air shocks and it'll let you dial in the height to suit your changing tastes as the bike encourages you to take it to the next level.

    ** Edit... it sounds like you have enough BO, so try revisiting the other things described above. G'Luck!
    Looks like I need to spend some time fiddling w/ the shock. Thanks for the tips; I'm really hoping this works out b/c the bike absolutely rips down hill.

    I was looking @ the pike, but it might be a bit too much for my riding.

    Thanks again,

    Dave

  7. #7
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    It's not just the additional travel that'll help you, it's the A-C height of the bigger travel forks that will make the difference.

  8. #8
    Roy
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    It's definately the rear shock, although the front fork isn't helping matters. I went from an XCE to a Spot a few years back and I had too heavy of a spring for the Romic that it came with; it rode like crap. Once I got the right spring, it was night and day. I still have the XCE and ride it alot, but the Spot is a far better bike.

  9. #9
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    Gosh, this thread is having a tone of "It's not the frame that matters, it's the parts you put on it!"

    Very interesting actually.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by lidarman
    Gosh, this thread is having a tone of "It's not the frame that matters, it's the parts you put on it!"

    Very interesting actually.

    "Kenny Craig [hypnotist]: Look into my eyes, look into my eyes, the eyes, the eyes, not around the eyes, don't look around the eyes, look into my eyes. [click] You're under!"

    The frame has the angles you need, the you can make a mess of the best frame with a bad set up !

    And I am not refering to you MightySchmoePong.

  11. #11
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    It'll be interesting to see...

    MightySchmoePong and I are going to swap bikes in the near future - I have an '05 Spot with the HL and an RP3. Since we are within 5 pounds of each other, it should be enlightening to try the two suspensions side-by-side. Personally, I think the DHX5-A just needs some dialing in. For me, I'll stick to the RP3 - I don't have the patience to muck through all of the settings. Hopefully all will be sorted out and he'll love his TNT 5 Spot as much as I love my HL one.

  12. #12
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    The more I think about it the more it seems like the shock. After I got my RFX, I recently swapped the fork and shock on my Spot(HL) trying to lighten it up for more XC duty. I put on a Pike and a RP3,(both at the same time) Taking off a Zoke Z1am and a DHX-C...the first few rides weren't great. It was very squaty on the climbs and wheelied-out much too easily. I kept lowering the pike in increments until it was all the way down to it's minimum and it still felt like it was falling back on the climbs.(even with PP+) Later, I decided I had the RP3 under inflated. I boosted it up several PSI and the balance came right back. I could even climb the techy steeps with the Pike fully extended.

    Long story short, start with upping your spring rate, and once the squat goes away, you can dial in the propedal and and bottom-out as described above.

    Cheers.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  13. #13
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    Got a ride in today after tuning the shock.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bikezilla
    The more I think about it the more it seems like the shock. After I got my RFX, I recently swapped the fork and shock on my Spot(HL) trying to lighten it up for more XC duty. I put on a Pike and a RP3,(both at the same time) Taking off a Zoke Z1am and a DHX-C...the first few rides weren't great. It was very squaty on the climbs and wheelied-out much too easily. I kept lowering the pike in increments until it was all the way down to it's minimum and it still felt like it was falling back on the climbs.(even with PP+) Later, I decided I had the RP3 under inflated. I boosted it up several PSI and the balance came right back. I could even climb the techy steeps with the Pike fully extended.

    Long story short, start with upping your spring rate, and once the squat goes away, you can dial in the propedal and and bottom-out as described above.

    Cheers.
    I'd say it's 90% better. It's still wanders a _bit_ more on the uphill, but nothing that I can't easily adapt to. That's probably attributable to the slacker HTA.

    I didn't notice any more squat today than I was used to on the XCE.

    Thanks again for the advice!

    Dave

  14. #14
    Roy
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    Quote Originally Posted by MightySchmoePong
    I'd say it's 90% better. It's still wanders a _bit_ more on the uphill, but nothing that I can't easily adapt to. That's probably attributable to the slacker HTA.
    Now alternate back and forth between the XCE and Spot and compare rides.

  15. #15
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    Yep

    The slacker HTA is certainly a factor in tracking, up and downhill.

    The DHX air has a hammock of linearity in it that will make it more difficult to set up for a snappier feel. I have a DHX air on one Spot and the RP3 on the other and they are very different climbing and descending. Take your time to get the DHX right and it will really shine for an air shock in the rough.

    If you have any more questions don't hesitate.

    DT

  16. #16
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    Hammock of linearity?

    Anyhoo,

    Took out a TNT Five Spot demo (Revelation, DHX Air) earlier this week (from Boulder Cycle Sport) -- my first substantial ride on a Five Spot. I currently ride a HL flux (Reba Team @ 115, RP3), which is an excellent climber. I was amazed at how well the Spot rode in all situations. It felt much more substantial than the flux yet performed nearly as well for climbing. I was very impressed. Although the flux has a more spirited get-up-and-go feel, I was, at times, pulling away from my brother (riding my flux) on steep climbs (which pretty much never happens). The TNT rear end performed flawlessly, something I honestly didn't expect.

    I was also highly impressed with the Revelation and DHX Air. The DHX Air has crazy adjustability, and I had to stop a couple of times for substantial adjustments before it felt good (great actually) - made the RP3 on my flux feel like it was a "hammock of variability." The Revelation felt like as short a fork as I would want on the Spot; it just begs for more, IMO. I can't imagine riding a Spot with a Reba.

  17. #17
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    Well....

    Quote Originally Posted by cowDawg
    The Revelation felt like as short a fork as I would want on the Spot; it just begs for more, IMO. I can't imagine riding a Spot with a Reba.
    I'm planning on getting a Revelation or a Pike for the 5-spot, but I just transferred all the parts over from the XCE so that's going to wait for awhile.

    Dave

  18. #18
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    I too went through a period of adjustment when I got my spot, my previous turner was a 1999 burner, so you can imagine how much different it was for me. It definitely doesn't have that zzzzzinggg up the mountain feeling my 2.8" travel alps-5r shock equipped burner had, but if that's what you were really after then you missed the point of the spot. I use a 130mm marzocchi, that's even longer than the recommended fox fork. But, I kinda like it raked out a bit anyway. No issues ever with pedal strikes, and it climbs beautifully with a tall fork.

    I try and read all that DHX-A adjustment stuff and it just makes my head spin....increase that, turn this, push that, dial this....try that....goignggnnhhhggg!

    Makes the scratch I spent on my Pushed RP3 worth even more.....simple and effective, and no brain vapor lock!.....

    maybe thats why Push doesn't mess with DHX-A's..............
    Yes, we do indeed rock...http://www.myspace.com/spokedrunkies

  19. #19
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    Bear with me, my first post. . .

    I just took delivery of a brand new medium TNT Spot -- changing from my 02 XCE. I noticed a little change in the handling, but once I got used to it, I LOVED the extra travel and the more stable handling at speed.

    I am almost exactly your weight (I weigh about 177 with gear). Here are my settings:

    Fox Talas 130 fork -- started with 85 PSI -- ended up with +-77 PSI

    DHX:

    Rear Main: 175 PSI
    Propedal: 125 PSI
    Propedal Adjust: 5 clicks from Full Fast (-)
    Rebound: 10 Clicks from Full Fast

    My best bet is that the fork is changing the geometry of the bike so much that it's messing with the handling. If you switch to a 130 fork, you should be fine.

    Hope this helps some.

  20. #20
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    Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by LZOG
    Bear with me, my first post. . .

    I just took delivery of a brand new medium TNT Spot -- changing from my 02 XCE. I noticed a little change in the handling, but once I got used to it, I LOVED the extra travel and the more stable handling at speed.

    I am almost exactly your weight (I weigh about 177 with gear). Here are my settings:

    Fox Talas 130 fork -- started with 85 PSI -- ended up with +-77 PSI

    DHX:

    Rear Main: 175 PSI
    Propedal: 125 PSI
    Propedal Adjust: 5 clicks from Full Fast (-)
    Rebound: 10 Clicks from Full Fast

    My best bet is that the fork is changing the geometry of the bike so much that it's messing with the handling. If you switch to a 130 fork, you should be fine.

    Hope this helps some.
    Those numbers are pretty close to what I ended up with. I had too little main spring air and too little in the propedal, and I was trying to compensate w/ the propedal dial. I'm pretty happy with it now, and I agree the extra traval and downhill stability at speed is awsome.

    Dave

  21. #21
    VTT
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    I am finding this thread very interesting having switch recently from a Burner to a 06 Spot and encountering the same issue of hitting rocks with the pedals. I weight 215 lbs fully geared, run a Talas R at 130 mm and I just check the pressures in the rear shock and realized I have 160 psi in the main chamber and 75 psi in the other chamber.
    The shock is maybe too complex for my technical skills (or lack of..), but I will increase the pressure in both chambers to 200/125 and, hopefully, will enjoy the 5 Spot better than I am now.

  22. #22
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    Make sure the rear shock isn't stuck down :)

    Quote Originally Posted by VTT
    I am finding this thread very interesting having switch recently from a Burner to a 06 Spot and encountering the same issue of hitting rocks with the pedals. I weight 215 lbs fully geared, run a Talas R at 130 mm and I just check the pressures in the rear shock and realized I have 160 psi in the main chamber and 75 psi in the other chamber.
    The shock is maybe too complex for my technical skills (or lack of..), but I will increase the pressure in both chambers to 200/125 and, hopefully, will enjoy the 5 Spot better than I am now.
    Hopefully that's my problem. I'd guess that 160 is _way_ too low for you @ 215 though.
    I'm kinda pining for my RP3 days; set the sag and go!

    Good luck!

    Dave

  23. #23
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    VTT:

    I am definitely no expert, but based upon my conversations with Fox, and a conversation with Turner, I'd say that you need to get way more PSI in that main chamber. I'd check with Fox on what the max PSI can be, and assuming you are within it, I'd start with your body weight.

  24. #24
    VTT
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    Quote Originally Posted by LZOG
    VTT:

    I am definitely no expert, but based upon my conversations with Fox, and a conversation with Turner, I'd say that you need to get way more PSI in that main chamber. I'd check with Fox on what the max PSI can be, and assuming you are within it, I'd start with your body weight.
    You are right, I have been running too low of air pressure. I filled the main chamber at 200 psi and the smaller at 125 psi but... I fell last Sunday and sprained my ankle. It still is too sore to ride, I will have to wait a few more days before trying the new settings.

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