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  1. #1
    FM
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    Following / Avalanche Monarch Tune

    Yo, throwing this out for anyone pondering having their monarch avalanche tuned... do it! I got mine done just in time for a week trip to Moab...the difference was impressive. It feels both more active/supple and more supportive. I left it in pedal position pretty much the entire trip.

    I'm not sure exactly what Craig does to the compression circuit, but it makes a noticeable difference. He did tweak my rebound quite a bit as well- with the stock tune, I only ever ran 1-2 clicks of rebound (from FF). Now I'm getting about the same rebound speed with 7 clicks, and the difference between the clicks seems a bit more subtle. It is nice to have more useful range of adjustment.

    A lot of non-owners complain about the inability to run a resi shock on the following, but the suspension on this bike performs incredibly well- arguably better than my other bike, which is a 160mm mini-link with a Float x2. Really impressive, especially after some tuning magic.

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    Mine is slated for the 26th. I'm a bigger dude and run 4 bands, 360psi and rebound on full, so am really looking forward to tuning it to my weight. I've had all my shocks going back 11 years or so done by push. This will be my first avy product. Pretty stoked to give it a go.
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  3. #3
    FM
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    One thing I noticed on the set up sheet is that there's both negative and positive positions for the volume bands. I didn't know that...

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    I had mine done by avy as well. I left in the pedal position and it is great. I'm 165 lbs and runs around 235 psi. I opened the can up afterwards and found 2 bands in the positive chamber. I went ahead and added 1 in the negative and it rides even better now. The one in the negative side keeps it higher in the travel and generally pedals snappier. I may try 225psi next and see how it feels. That would put me 10 less than what avy recommends but with an added band it might be ok.

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  5. #5
    FM
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    Good info on the bands! Mine was spec'd with 1 negative, 2 positive.

    I think you could def get away with lower pressure. I run 240, and weigh 175-180lbs, usually don't ride with a pack, and also have the RWS bearing shock hardware. Same pressure as before...puts me at about 27% sag. Kevin @ Evil helped me tune in the pressure, pre-avy.

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    My Avy tune shock should be here by the end of the week. Interesting on the PSI settings. I weigh 205lbs & had 285psi for 35% sag. Craig noticed that on my form I sent him. He states that's way too much pressure based off his data base. Says I should be running around 230psi.
    We kept talking & there is 2 methods for setting sag. The way I did, sitting on the saddle and his way which from my understanding DH riders do this way as well. Have someone hold the front wheel & stand in the attack position. He strongly recommends this method.
    Looking forward to trying this method out, of course he'll already have the recommended PSI in my shock when I get it. I can't wait to give it a go


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    Quote Originally Posted by FM View Post
    Yo, throwing this out for anyone pondering having their monarch avalanche tuned... do it! I got mine done just in time for a week trip to Moab...the difference was impressive. It feels both more active/supple and more supportive. I left it in pedal position pretty much the entire trip.

    I'm not sure exactly what Craig does to the compression circuit, but it makes a noticeable difference. He did tweak my rebound quite a bit as well- with the stock tune, I only ever ran 1-2 clicks of rebound (from FF). Now I'm getting about the same rebound speed with 7 clicks, and the difference between the clicks seems a bit more subtle. It is nice to have more useful range of adjustment.

    A lot of non-owners complain about the inability to run a resi shock on the following, but the suspension on this bike performs incredibly well- arguably better than my other bike, which is a 160mm mini-link with a Float x2. Really impressive, especially after some tuning magic.
    when you say noticeable difference can you describe some of those differences on how it reacts on the trail. looking to have this done here soon also.

  8. #8
    FM
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    eh...hard to describe beyond "both more active/supple and more supportive". If I was blindfolded I would have thought it was a different shock.

    Moab is great for shock testing. I prefer really light damping/fast rebound...basically 1 click slower than too fast (2 bounces from a single impact). Set up that way the bike felt supple and glued to the ground on the high speed jeep road stuff like porc rim. Yet it never felt too fast when hitting the optional low-speed drops-to-flat which are everywhere down there. And it felt great climbing Mag7, no bob and pedaled great while the bike smoothed out all the weird moon-scape slickrock ripples.

    FYI turn-around from Avalanche was around 2 weeks... no big to me, I was happy riding my other bike.

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    Cool. Thanks for the info

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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbbiker View Post
    My Avy tune shock should be here by the end of the week. Interesting on the PSI settings. I weigh 205lbs & had 285psi for 35% sag. Craig noticed that on my form I sent him. He states that's way too much pressure based off his data base. Says I should be running around 230psi.
    We kept talking & there is 2 methods for setting sag. The way I did, sitting on the saddle and his way which from my understanding DH riders do this way as well. Have someone hold the front wheel & stand in the attack position. He strongly recommends this method.
    Looking forward to trying this method out, of course he'll already have the recommended PSI in my shock when I get it. I can't wait to give it a go


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    I'm not totally in agreement with the attack position, when you do this, you are often going downhill with more weight on the front of the bike. Just doing this statically moves more weight off the front of the bike. When I'm tired and hit a bump seated or land a jump and my ass hits the seat, it's going to be a more extreme impact with more weight on the rear of the bike. This is what I like to plan for, the most extreme impact that I might see. Unless you have a lot more progression or some anti-bottoming feature, IME attack is a little over-rated.

    That said, after revalving by craig, I was able to run less sag and still have more compliance. To get the monarch+ to have any kind of compliance prior, I had to run around 40% sag, any less and it was a jackhammer. I also run it in the "climb" position, as he modifies it so the pedal lever becomes a low-speed compression adjuster. I find the best action is with the stiffest compression setting, because it creates a firm chassis and allows the high speed circuits to activate easier in the chunk. I prefer heavy low speed compression and rebound, to keep the bike "glued" to the surface and to resist chassis movement, then have the high speed circuits tuned so they blow off easily and quickly for the chunk. This is exactly how it comes.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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    I've done mine. It's awesome. It's cheap if you combine with a regular service. I also got Fox from fanatik and run both back to back on my local trails.

    I don't remember what the original monarch was like but Fox is not even close to my Avy Monarch. It's nigth and day difference.

  12. #12
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    Just to clarify we recommend standing centered over bike to set the sag, not in the attack position.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    I'm not totally in agreement with the attack position, when you do this, you are often going downhill with more weight on the front of the bike. Just doing this statically moves more weight off the front of the bike. When I'm tired and hit a bump seated or land a jump and my ass hits the seat, it's going to be a more extreme impact with more weight on the rear of the bike. This is what I like to plan for, the most extreme impact that I might see. Unless you have a lot more progression or some anti-bottoming feature, IME attack is a little over-rated.

    That said, after revalving by craig, I was able to run less sag and still have more compliance. To get the monarch+ to have any kind of compliance prior, I had to run around 40% sag, any less and it was a jackhammer. I also run it in the "climb" position, as he modifies it so the pedal lever becomes a low-speed compression adjuster. I find the best action is with the stiffest compression setting, because it creates a firm chassis and allows the high speed circuits to activate easier in the chunk. I prefer heavy low speed compression and rebound, to keep the bike "glued" to the surface and to resist chassis movement, then have the high speed circuits tuned so they blow off easily and quickly for the chunk. This is exactly how it comes.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbbiker View Post
    My Avy tune shock should be here by the end of the week. Interesting on the PSI settings. I weigh 205lbs & had 285psi for 35% sag. Craig noticed that on my form I sent him. He states that's way too much pressure based off his data base. Says I should be running around 230psi.
    We kept talking & there is 2 methods for setting sag. The way I did, sitting on the saddle and his way which from my understanding DH riders do this way as well. Have someone hold the front wheel & stand in the attack position. He strongly recommends this method.
    Looking forward to trying this method out, of course he'll already have the recommended PSI in my shock when I get it. I can't wait to give it a go


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    Just to clarify we recommend standing on pedals centered over bike to set the sag, not in the attack position.

  14. #14
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    Agreed. Avy tune is awesome. It feels so much better than stock. I keep it in "pedal" position most of the time and it's great.

    I weigh 175lbs-ish and Craig reconfigured the shock with 2P, 1N volume spacer. The air pressure is anywhere between 235 to 240 depending on my weight and gear. My Monarch was untouched prior to Avy tune. With SSD/HSB mod, I had the shock serviced as well.

    Highly recommended for V1 Following owners who don't have much shock options out there

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    Wondering what would be better for the Insurgent for typical PNW riding with occasional trips to Whistler and Stevens Pass... Having Craig work his magic on the Monarch Plus RT3 Debonair or getting a FOX Float X2? Thoughts?
    Last edited by MudBike; 02-04-2018 at 02:18 PM.

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