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  1. #1
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    HD coil vs DHX air

    Hey guys
    about to pull the trigger on a HD and trying to decide what rear shock for my all mountain adventures (I will be using the limbo chips and an rp23 for xc stuff)
    my question is this- Which shock for my downhill/all mountain stuff? I would Love some direct comparisons from anyone who has ridden both- My assumption is that the dhx would pedal better (particularly with the propedal on) thus making it better for backcountry pedalling, whilst I assume the coil is better for the rough stuff...
    thoughts?

  2. #2
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    Based on recent comments I think a bunch of the guys are looking at the Vivid Coil from Push.

    I talked with Push alot over the last few weeks and I'm going with their Monarch RT-AM as my lighter shock and a Push Vivid Team Issue Coil for the rougher stuff.

    You may want to consider either the new Push Monarch Plus coming in a few weeks or the Vivid Coil as options for the more serious stuff.

    Subliminalshiver (Chad) has had great things to say about the Pushed Vivid Coil on his HD and you may want to PM him if you have specific questions on it (he answered a bunch for me).

    The Vivid Coil seems ideal to me unless you are concerned with the weight. If so look at the Monarch Plus in a AM style package as it should perform like the RT-AM but with even more oil flow/ cooling for rough stuff.

    Worth giving Push a call to talk through the options.

    -Shane

  3. #3
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    I wouldn't go drop a bunch of cash on a new shock when the frame comes with a perfectly good shock on it. I'm sure the VIvid stuff is good, but no point in being a fanboy and blowing a bunch of money on brand new stuff when the stock stuff will work good, at least for the time being. If the fox stuff really feels that bad, maybe down the line it would be nice to upgrade.

    If the bike is going to be a do it all bike and you will set it and forget it go with the DHX air. If you truly are going to change the wheels, fork and tires for xc then you might as well set it apart and go with a coil for teh DH stuff. No point in having an air shock for xc riding and then throw another air shock on for DH.

  4. #4
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    Having ridden my Mojo C over 4 years with coil, stock and twice PUSH tuned Vanilla RC, I recommend that if you have never ridden coil then stay with air, it is easier to set up.

    But coil is smoother, bringing grippier traction especially downhill, wallows less needing less damping. But it takes trying a few coil springs to find a good balance. Air forks feel harsher using a coil shock.

    Also I'd wait until PUSH has dynoed an HD and had some ride time on one before getting a PUSH tuned coil. It took 2 tries for them to get my RC to ramp up well in deeper travel (only the small and sharp bump was improved the first PUSH tune try, before they had Mojo experience.)

    When I can afford to by an HD I'll most likely follow DW's advice and order it from Ibis with the RC4 to have the most externally adjustable options.

  5. #5
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    I never liked the DHX-A on a Nomad - kept going back to a non BV RP23 so you definitely want to ask people riding them on HDs for more opinions on that one - know it is mixed reviews on Nomads. Never considered it on the HD.

    Out of the two the RC4 is definitely nicer (though heavier and as derby mentioned it will take a while to get it dialed in). I seriously considered it but I like having Push as an option and them not working on it nixxed it for me. Have not heard anything bad from anyone on it.

    I bought my HD with the RP23BV and am going to sell it new/unridden to help fund a different shock so I can go broader in my choices (RT-AM). Hopefully $ delta shouldn't be too painful. May want to consider that option also - though the PITA factor is alot higher.

    Is everyone happy with the RP23BV on the HD? Personally do not like the mid and bottom with either DW Link or VPP (like the non BV RP23 alot better on both those suspensions - though it is nice on single pivots). For me it was heading to Push anyways so I'm going to try something new. Don't mean to sidetrack but surprised everyone loves the stock feel so much.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by derby
    Also I'd wait until PUSH has dynoed an HD and had some ride time on one before getting a PUSH tuned coil.
    Pretty sure they already have. They've got data on the HD in both 160mm and 140mm configurations.

    I've mentioned this in several threads before, but I'll interject again. I had the opportunity to ride my stock RP23, Monarch RT3, and Vivid Team Issue Coil. My major issues with the RP23 were with wallow: I had difficulty getting it balanced. Either I ran too much air and it wouldn't use full travel or not enough and I was bottoming out too often. This was frustrating as I was trying to keep my sag between 25-30%. I tried propedal on vs. off, tried running different propedal settings, experimenting with the rebound... didn't ever seem quite right. Don't get me wrong... these problems aside, I think it's a decent shock, just one with quirks, which I can only imagine come from trying to tune a shock from the factory to work with a number of designs, and within those designs you have people riding the same bike very differently. Some folks are building HD's as mini-DH bikes. Some folks are building them to ride more like an XC bike. It's a very versatile chassis.

    The Monarch solved the issues I had with the RP23. Set-up was pretty easy, made easier by the percentage gradients. A simple idea, but a useful one. At between 25-30%sag, with the floodgate open, I felt very little pedal bob when climbing. At one point I even tried to look at the gradients to see if it was moving. This unscientific observation noted about 10% movement with exaggerated pedal bob. When descending, bottomed out far less (never got the nasty tire vs. seatmast noise) and the travel felt much more controlled. Felt like I gained an inch of travel, super-supple travel which I would rate as even coil-like. All in all... a lightweight shock that performed better than the RP23 by far. I was very happy with how it rode.

    The Vivid Team Kit, for me was like the next step in the progression. It built upon the advantages of the Monarch and just kept going. I rode this down a nice little flowy section of singletrack here called The Wathan. The Wathan is flowy, but then throws little outcroppings of jagged quartz and granite into the mix. I was stunned with how well the bike handled those sections in particular. Usually, if I have any kind of speed at all through those sections I have to shoot through them and just hang on. These sections are short enough that I can do that and just aim for something to steer on on the other side. With the Vivid coil I felt like I had control over this stuff. Like time slowed down and I could just pick whatever line I wanted, or even stop if I needed to. It was amazing how much more control I had. If the Monarch felt like it gave me another inch, this thing felt like two. Climbing I did notice just a little more bob than with the Monarch. That being said I really hadn't spent any time with any of the adjustments. Just bolted it on and rode.
    That being said... setup on the Vivid Team Issue is pretty slick. Aside from all the magic on the inside with pistons and stacks the kit comes with the adjustment range of the High and Low speed compression adjusters set for your weight and riding application, and nice, easy to use external adjustments (blue and gold knobs) which basicaly translate into bump force and handling. Which is nice, because even a suspension moron like myself can make meaningful adjustments with simple instructions like that.

    So.. in summary.... I liked the Vivid Team Issue the best. I do all-mountainy type riding mostly. The local trails here usually involve 45-60 min climbs to the top and then dry descents with lots of big rocks in the way. In the summers I ride a lot of stuff higher up, which means more climbing, though often the descents are a little more buffed. If I had the coin, I'd probably get the Monarch and Vivid both. But since I don't, the Vivid is my huckleberry.

    Sorry to hijack as I have not ridden the DHX air at all, and offer no valuable 1st person comparison. Though I would ask this: for the $, what does the DHX air do that the Monarch with a Push Tune won't?
    **** censorship

  7. #7
    MPI
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    Not really happy with BV RP23. I have now Vivid Air in my XL HD. Fine tuning still in progress. Instant feel is that the shock feels really plush for an air one. Keep you posted then I have more experience about the shock.
    http://www.kiva.org - Loans That Change Lives

  8. #8
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    fork

    Quote Originally Posted by MPI
    Not really happy with BV RP23. I have now Vivid Air in my XL HD. Fine tuning still in progress. Instant feel is that the shock feels really plush for an air one. Keep you posted then I have more experience about the shock.
    What fork you got up front? Thanks

  9. #9
    MPI
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    Quote Originally Posted by redranger
    What fork you got up front? Thanks
    RS Lyrik Solo air DH.
    http://www.kiva.org - Loans That Change Lives

  10. #10
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    Will Ibis sell the frame without a shock? I'd want it with a Monarch purchased from Push.
    Keep the Country country.

  11. #11
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    shock

    [QUOTE=Lelandjt]Will Ibis sell the frame without a shock? I'd want it with a Monarch purchased from Push.[/QUOT
    They told me yes that your dealer could quote the price without the shock. I am thinking the same way you are. Looking at the 140 hd. Not sure what coil at 140/150 to put upfront. Also weight would be the same or close to my current ride at 30 lbs.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by subliminalshiver
    Pretty sure they already have. They've got data on the HD in both 160mm and 140mm configurations.

    I've mentioned this in several threads before, but I'll interject again. I had the opportunity to ride my stock RP23, Monarch RT3, and Vivid Team Issue Coil. My major issues with the RP23 were with wallow: I had difficulty getting it balanced. Either I ran too much air and it wouldn't use full travel or not enough and I was bottoming out too often. This was frustrating as I was trying to keep my sag between 25-30%. I tried propedal on vs. off, tried running different propedal settings, experimenting with the rebound... didn't ever seem quite right. Don't get me wrong... these problems aside, I think it's a decent shock, just one with quirks, which I can only imagine come from trying to tune a shock from the factory to work with a number of designs, and within those designs you have people riding the same bike very differently. Some folks are building HD's as mini-DH bikes. Some folks are building them to ride more like an XC bike. It's a very versatile chassis.

    The Monarch solved the issues I had with the RP23. Set-up was pretty easy, made easier by the percentage gradients. A simple idea, but a useful one. At between 25-30%sag, with the floodgate open, I felt very little pedal bob when climbing. At one point I even tried to look at the gradients to see if it was moving. This unscientific observation noted about 10% movement with exaggerated pedal bob. When descending, bottomed out far less (never got the nasty tire vs. seatmast noise) and the travel felt much more controlled. Felt like I gained an inch of travel, super-supple travel which I would rate as even coil-like. All in all... a lightweight shock that performed better than the RP23 by far. I was very happy with how it rode.

    The Vivid Team Kit, for me was like the next step in the progression. It built upon the advantages of the Monarch and just kept going. I rode this down a nice little flowy section of singletrack here called The Wathan. The Wathan is flowy, but then throws little outcroppings of jagged quartz and granite into the mix. I was stunned with how well the bike handled those sections in particular. Usually, if I have any kind of speed at all through those sections I have to shoot through them and just hang on. These sections are short enough that I can do that and just aim for something to steer on on the other side. With the Vivid coil I felt like I had control over this stuff. Like time slowed down and I could just pick whatever line I wanted, or even stop if I needed to. It was amazing how much more control I had. If the Monarch felt like it gave me another inch, this thing felt like two. Climbing I did notice just a little more bob than with the Monarch. That being said I really hadn't spent any time with any of the adjustments. Just bolted it on and rode.
    That being said... setup on the Vivid Team Issue is pretty slick. Aside from all the magic on the inside with pistons and stacks the kit comes with the adjustment range of the High and Low speed compression adjusters set for your weight and riding application, and nice, easy to use external adjustments (blue and gold knobs) which basicaly translate into bump force and handling. Which is nice, because even a suspension moron like myself can make meaningful adjustments with simple instructions like that.

    So.. in summary.... I liked the Vivid Team Issue the best. I do all-mountainy type riding mostly. The local trails here usually involve 45-60 min climbs to the top and then dry descents with lots of big rocks in the way. In the summers I ride a lot of stuff higher up, which means more climbing, though often the descents are a little more buffed. If I had the coin, I'd probably get the Monarch and Vivid both. But since I don't, the Vivid is my huckleberry.

    Sorry to hijack as I have not ridden the DHX air at all, and offer no valuable 1st person comparison. Though I would ask this: for the $, what does the DHX air do that the Monarch with a Push Tune won't?
    HI,
    would you please tell us which monarch did you try(R,RT, RT3) ?
    and what about monarch plus ?
    are they available ?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucash290
    HI,
    would you please tell us which monarch did you try(R,RT, RT3) ?
    I'll forgive you as my post was longwinded:
    Quote Originally Posted by subliminalshiver
    I had the opportunity to ride my stock RP23, Monarch RT3, and Vivid Team Issue Coil....
    **** censorship

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by subliminalshiver
    I'll forgive you as my post was longwinded:
    sir, sorry,sir

  15. #15
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    Hi, im trying to calculate the spring rate to instal a bos stoy on a HD for a 80kg/176lbs rider.

    ive used this calculator:
    http://www.tftunedshox.com/info/spring_calculator.aspx

    and this is the result, what do you think?
    thanks
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails HD coil vs DHX air-stoy.jpg  


  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by MPI
    RS Lyrik Solo air DH.

    How do you like it?

  17. #17
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    [QUOTE=redranger]
    Quote Originally Posted by Lelandjt
    Will Ibis sell the frame without a shock? I'd want it with a Monarch purchased from Push.[/QUOT
    They told me yes that your dealer could quote the price without the shock. I am thinking the same way you are. Looking at the 140 hd. Not sure what coil at 140/150 to put upfront. Also weight would be the same or close to my current ride at 30 lbs.
    I tried to order one without a shock. No go... something about liability? I want a double barrel!
    Herro prease

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by derby

    When I can afford to by an HD I'll most likely follow DW's advice and order it from Ibis with the RC4 to have the most externally adjustable options.
    Van RC?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Braco
    Van RC?
    No the Fox DHX RC4 with external adjustments for bottom travel, LSC, HSC, LSR, boost (mid-to-deep-travel compression). It is a relatively low cost upgrade option when buying the HD, compared to buying a coil shock separatly. Eventually use a ti coil when I get the spring weight known testing with steel coils to drop some of the added weight over air.

    However, I will first check with PUSH to see if they can do their MX tune conversion of the RC4 if I'm not happy with the stock Fox tuning ability. I am very pleased with the PUSH tune of my old Vanilla RC on my Mojo C.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by derby
    It is a relatively low cost upgrade option when buying the HD, compared to buying a coil shock separatly.
    I mean what if you already have Mojo HD with RP23. Is it DHX RC4 with more adjustments so much superior over "simple" Van RC.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Braco
    I mean what if you already have Mojo HD with RP23. Is it DHX RC4 with more adjustments so much superior over "simple" Van RC.
    The Van RC after 2005 had Propedal platform damping. That maybe too firm feeling in mid travel for a Mojo HD, and like the earlier Vanilla RC without platform damping, also not have enough spring progression in deep travel to match the falling rate suspension Mojo and HD linkage.

    The RC4 has air assist and adjustable boost for supporting bottom travel more than a simple coil and LSC like a Van RC.

    A coil shock with no platform damping has much smoother small bump and less mid travel wallow than an air shock.

    If you are very happy with the air shock, don't change. Adjusting to coil requires much experimenting with coil weight and damping adjustments.

    The challenge to tune a high end coil shock or fork is very fun, but it is not as easy like air to get on the bike set sag and rebound damping, and go ride. After the coil is tuned then checking adjustments is infrequent.

  22. #22
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    Thank you again.

  23. #23
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    Hey just my two cents first the RP23 and the DHX Air are specific items tuned for the the DWLink so I wouldnt pay too much to what others with linkage systems that actuate and have different ratios have to say. Not even going to get into the rider weight and sag complexities.
    Going to another shock say from Push I hope they are taking the linkages into consideration.
    FYI I own a HD and run both the RP23 and the DHXAIR, with no issues. I have however found myself on the DHXA 90% and more and more as I get next to no pedal bob at the min ProP settings 125psi. I can ramp it up at a flick for out of the seat cranking if needed.
    Thats me at 220lb in full DH gear. running 30% sag.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by shooby
    Hey just my two cents first the RP23 and the DHX Air are specific items tuned for the the DWLink so I wouldnt pay too much to what others with linkage systems that actuate and have different ratios have to say. Not even going to get into the rider weight and sag complexities.
    Well... they are "tuned" in as much as they come from the factory with the "low" tune and specific boost valve pressures... and in as much as the mojo and HD have rising then falling ratios they are supposedly "optimized" for air shocks.

    Quote Originally Posted by shooby
    Going to another shock say from Push I hope they are taking the linkages into consideration.
    Have you not heard of PUSH? Yes, they do take the linkages into consideration, they are definitely more than the rest of us hacks running the demo version of Linkage 7. They actually have state-of-the art data acquisition equipment, including a massive dyno. Wheel rates and shock rates and Instant Centers actually mean something to those guys in realistic, everyday terms, and they know how to manipulate them. And they understand Math. That's right, math. But they have a visceral understanding of it the way the NASA guys used to when they were trying to put people on the moon. I would venture a guess: That due to the unique nature of their business, the ability to tune and service shocks for a myriad of designs and people,I bet that there is no one else with the massive level of experience in performance suspension tuning than PUSH.
    I'd say, from my own experiences with them the biggest limiting factor for PUSH is the customer. Getting the customer communicate effectively and honestly about their riding style and expectations has gotta be difficult, especially since the customer most probably doesn't know how they want their shock to ride, they just want it "better". Which PUSH can do, but it might not always be what the customer expected.
    Case in point: My Vivid. Rode it for the first time and I almost thought something was broken. Rear end felt almost dead. Not springy, not particularly plush. Just sorta dead. Not really what I expected. Then it hit me. For the first time the suspension was really working. Really really working. The dead feeling was actually total shock performance absorbing more energy with each compression than it ever had before. Same travel, better travel. Blew my mind, man.
    So anyway... yeah, they know "linkages".
    **** censorship

  25. #25
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    Well dip me in honey and throw me to the lesbians, sounds like they're the ****. When it come time to rebuild the DHXA i'll give them a holler.
    Cheers

  26. #26
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    Push doesn't work on DHX Airs. In their opinion the shock's internals limit its performance. The layout is backward from mosts hocks.
    Keep the Country country.

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