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  1. #1
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    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues

    I'm new to Fox forks - last bike had a Pike 150 mm.
    I have a 2108 36 rc2 160mm on my 2018 Spec Enduro.
    I have about 8 rides on the bike and most of these have been trying to setup my suspension.

    I weigh ~ 165 geared up.

    I've tried several combinations of LS, HS, Reb, Volume spacers and PSI settings.
    My main issue is in high speed, rough downhills. I can hardly hold onto the bars the suspension is just hammering me. It should be so much calmer and smoother descending these tails at speed!

    On the Stumpy running the Pike it's much more controllable / calm.
    I started with 2 - 10 mm volume spacers and now I have zero spacers and the fork still seems to ramp up too hard on the last 40 - 50 mm of the stroke. I think I've only gotten about 130 mm of travel out of the fork to date. It feels like it has 4 volume spacers in it.

    I read a lot of the 2016 harsh Fox 36 thread but there is so many issues and solutions discussed that I'm a bit confused if the 2018 has the same issues?

    One thing I've read is the negative air pressure and a zip tie " solution ". This does sound like it may be the issue I've been fighting of not getting full travel and the fork ramping really hard the second half of the travel. Thoughts??

    There seems to be a few companies that have bolt on help for different problems. Do any of them have a long term solution to a negative air build up - IF THATS WHAT I HAVE?

    Anyone experience this problem?

    Anyone know whats going on with this fork?

    I would love to see what you guys are running for a setup as well.


    My current setup is
    Ride weight 165 lbs

    60 psi
    ~ 30 mm sag
    0 volume spacers
    8 out on Reb.
    HS Comp. from wide open to closed down 5 clicks
    LS Comp. from open to 5 closed


    Thanks
    Dan
    Last edited by dp400; 01-08-2018 at 11:24 PM.

  2. #2
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    The 2018 36 still has the same issues with the air spring top cap as previous years from what I've gathered. The tolerance it's made from isn't the greatest creating a lot of friction.

    If you read that thread then you know about 92 piston head. You can't use that but something similar that's already around is the vorsprung luftkappe. I have that on my hardtail and it's made a great improvement to my pike.

    I also just went through to change the oil out of the damper and found that it was overfilled really squirting out oil even with the damper rod fully extended. That along with the negative air chamber mod, im looking forward to a new fork. Good luck with yours.


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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by dp400 View Post
    I'm new to Fox forks - last bike had a Pike 150 mm.
    I have a 2108 36 rc2 160mm on my 2018 Spec Enduro.
    I have about 8 rides on the bike and most of these have been trying to setup my suspension.

    I weigh ~ 165 geared up.

    I've tried several combinations of LS, HS, Reb, Volume spacers and PSI settings.
    My main issue is in high speed, rough downhills. I can hardly hold onto the bars the suspension is just hammering me. It should be so much calmer and smoother descending these tails at speed!

    On the Stumpy running the Pike it's much more controllable / calm.
    I started with 2 - 10 mm volume spacers and now I have zero spacers and the fork still seems to ramp up too hard on the last 40 - 50 mm of the stroke. I think I've only gotten about 130 mm of travel out of the fork to date. It feels like it has 4 volume spacers in it.

    I read a lot of the 2016 harsh Fox 36 thread but there is so many issues and solutions discussed that I'm a bit confused if the 2018 has the same issues?

    One thing I've read is the negative air pressure and a zip tie " solution ". This does sound like it may be the issue I've been fighting of not getting full travel and the fork ramping really hard the second half of the travel. Thoughts??

    There seems to be a few companies that have bolt on help for different problems. Do any of them have a long term solution to a negative air build up - IF THATS WHAT I HAVE?

    Anyone experience this problem?

    Anyone know whats going on with this fork?

    I would love to see what you guys are running for a setup as well.


    My current setup is
    Ride weight 165 lbs

    160 psi
    ~ 30 mm sag
    0 volume spacers
    8 out on Reb.
    HS Comp. from wide open to closed down 5 clicks
    LS Comp. from open to 5 closed


    Thanks
    Dan
    160 psi? I don't ride fox, but most forks have similar sized air chambers and that seems excessive, especially to only get 30% sag.

    Make sure your rebound is fast enough. Slow rebound can lead to the issue you describe. Have you ridden it with the hsc and lsc backed all the way out.

    The most enlightening thing I was ever told was by my suspension tuner when I was racing motorcycles, "the spring holds you in the ideal position, the damping keeps you there by controlling movement".

  4. #4
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    My bad. Thats 60 psi not 160.

    Yes I have ridden them both open and still can only get maybe 130 - 140 mm of travel.

    I have tried different Reb settings to make sure it wasn't packing. I've ridden and raced off road motorcycles for 40 years and have spent a lot of time setting up my bikes so I have a lot of experience turning knobs but somethings not right with how hard the fork ramps up.

    It fells like it has way to much oil in the fork and it's hydro locking.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Junersun View Post
    I also just went through to change the oil out of the damper and found that it was overfilled really squirting out oil even with the damper rod fully extended. That along with the negative air chamber mod, im looking forward to a new fork. Good luck with yours.
    The damper will have become overfilled through use. It will have ingested some lower leg oil.

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    Did you try to lower your psi?

    I am 215 (98 kg) and in my 2017 36 I run 75 psi, 2 orange tokens, 30% sag in the attack position, 10 clicks or rebound from full close and the fork is quite good. Supple enough, good mid stroke support and uses most of the travel in big hits.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Draper View Post
    The damper will have become overfilled through use. It will have ingested some lower leg oil.
    That totally makes sense!

    Now I'm even more excited. I was a little worried this was not going to do much since the oil looked more or less still in good shape.

    Rick, I was thinking of using Maxima 3 wt which is a tad less viscous than fox 5wt (from what I've gathered). Do you see any problem doing that? I am on the heavier side of the spectrum but I'm only about 6 clicks in. My thought process was to use that maxima so I could essentially have less HSR for a quicker return.


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    Quote Originally Posted by dp400 View Post
    My bad. Thats 60 psi not 160.

    Yes I have ridden them both open and still can only get maybe 130 - 140 mm of travel.

    I have tried different Reb settings to make sure it wasn't packing. I've ridden and raced off road motorcycles for 40 years and have spent a lot of time setting up my bikes so I have a lot of experience turning knobs but somethings not right with how hard the fork ramps up.

    It fells like it has way to much oil in the fork and it's hydro locking.
    Have you cycled it without any air? Does it achieve full travel then? If the oil level in the cartridge is too high it won't cycle through its full travel with or without air.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little_twin View Post
    Have you cycled it without any air? Does it achieve full travel then? If the oil level in the cartridge is too high it won't cycle through its full travel with or without air.
    I'm going to check that today.
    I think when I let out the air to pull the tokens from the fork that it only went down about 130 - 140 mm not the full 160?
    Is there two areas that hold oil separately in this fork?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Draper View Post
    The damper will have become overfilled through use. It will have ingested some lower leg oil.
    Rick are you saying over time that this transfer of oil happens on these forks?

    Does my situation sound like an air or oil issue to you?

    Dan

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    Quote Originally Posted by dp400 View Post
    I'm going to check that today.
    I think when I let out the air to pull the tokens from the fork that it only went down about 130 - 140 mm not the full 160?
    Is there two areas that hold oil separately in this fork?
    Yes, and it should have no to minimal air inside the damper. The oil in the case of a sealed damper acts a solid object and passes from one side of the piston and back as the damper is cycled. Air added to this equation creates cavitation and foaming of the oil which will result in a loss of damping effectiveness.

    The first thing you need to do is air it down and cycle it to see if you are getting full travel.

    See full travel: air it to half of your final pressure and check again. If at any point while it has low pressure in the chamber it stops cyclin full travel investigate the air spring

    Not seeing full travel without air: remove damper and ensure that it is cycling it's full travel. If the damper doesn't cycle it's full stroke investigate damper.

    Divide and conquer my friend. You'll get your answer.

  12. #12
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    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues-2017-12-14-18.07.13.jpg

    Awesome thanks for the info!!
    I'm dying to get this bike dialed in and just go ride and not dick with the setup!
    On the flip side I have a Ohlins shock that leaks air like a kid after eating a bean burrito!!
    One end is to stiff and the other blows through the travel.
    Can't wait to get her dialed!

  13. #13
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    Spring keeps you up, damper keeps you there.

    Unfortunately with air springs you also deal with stiction and I think that's your problem.

    Unless your damper is overfilled it's hard for me to think the lower leg oil is already seeping affecting your damper seeing how it's 2018 model.

    Dropping the lowers, removing the air Schrader assembly and cycling it to see how tough that is will be much easier to feel than draining the damper. I'd do that first.


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    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Junersun View Post
    The 2018 36 still has the same issues with the air spring top cap as previous years from what I've gathered. The tolerance it's made from isn't the greatest creating a lot of friction.

    If you read that thread then you know about 92 piston head. You can't use that but something similar that's already around is the vorsprung luftkappe. I have that on my hardtail and it's made a great improvement to my pike.

    I also just went through to change the oil out of the damper and found that it was overfilled really squirting out oil even with the damper rod fully extended. That along with the negative air chamber mod, im looking forward to a new fork. Good luck with yours.


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    Quit calling it a topcap, it is not. It is the air piston. The topcap holds the volume spacers.


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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cary View Post
    Quit calling it a topcap, it is not. It is the air piston. The topcap holds the volume spacers.


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    What Cary said... grab some coffee bud, you sound like you're having a rough day.


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    Rick, I was thinking of using Maxima 3 wt which is a tad less viscous than fox 5wt (from what I've gathered). Do you see any problem doing that? I am on the heavier side of the spectrum but I'm only about 6 clicks in. My thought process was to use that maxima so I could essentially have less HSR for a quicker return.
    What year is your fork?

  17. #17
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    Just tried a few things.
    First I tried the zip tie and I did not hear any air released.
    Then I released all of the air and I was able to get the full 160 mm of travel.
    I did air it up to ~ 30psi but I could only get about 145 mm of travel when pushing down on the bars. I'm not very heavy so maybe that had something to do with it?
    I guess I will just try a low psi and see how that goes on my next ride. I'll play with my LS and HS compression to see if I can get closer to the full travel.
    I liike the bike to sit up in it's stoke so am I correct in thinking that dialing in a bit more HS will keep the front end up and not be divey?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Draper View Post
    What year is your fork?
    2016


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    Quote Originally Posted by dp400 View Post
    Just tried a few things.
    First I tried the zip tie and I did not hear any air released.
    Then I released all of the air and I was able to get the full 160 mm of travel.
    I did air it up to ~ 30psi but I could only get about 145 mm of travel when pushing down on the bars. I'm not very heavy so maybe that had something to do with it?
    I guess I will just try a low psi and see how that goes on my next ride. I'll play with my LS and HS compression to see if I can get closer to the full travel.
    I liike the bike to sit up in it's stoke so am I correct in thinking that dialing in a bit more HS will keep the front end up and not be divey?
    Sounds like your fork is functioning after all. You want LSC to prevent dive, HSC is for sudden/sharp impacts. Sounds like you should dial your HSC all the way open and if it's still too harsh get it retuned.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dp400 View Post
    Just tried a few things.
    First I tried the zip tie and I did not hear any air released.
    Then I released all of the air and I was able to get the full 160 mm of travel.
    I did air it up to ~ 30psi but I could only get about 145 mm of travel when pushing down on the bars. I'm not very heavy so maybe that had something to do with it?
    I guess I will just try a low psi and see how that goes on my next ride. I'll play with my LS and HS compression to see if I can get closer to the full travel.
    I liike the bike to sit up in it's stoke so am I correct in thinking that dialing in a bit more HS will keep the front end up and not be divey?
    Hmm, wonder if your lowers are overfilled or oil has migrated to the air chamber. When you compressed with no air did you feel it ramp up a lot at the end of the stroke? Did it move smoothly, or did it stick a little before moving?

    It is beyond me that Fox can have so many ongoing QC issues on a $1000 fork.


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  21. #21
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    Seems to be a fair amount of stiction. If I just let the air out and don't push down the fork will stay in the up position .
    When I compressed the forks with no air it was fairly smooth but it seemed like I had to push down with a little force the first time to get it to the full travel. After that it seems to go down ok.
    The action was smooth.
    I am going to try 50 psi which is well below the chart recommendations . Thinking I may have to add a fair amount of damping to keep it from being a pogo stick?
    I guess the only way to really know if everything is correct inside the fork is to have it looked at.
    Too wet to get out to do more testing for a few days.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Junersun View Post
    2016


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    If its early 2016 its worth checking the HSC valving.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Draper View Post
    If its early 2016 its worth checking the HSC valving.
    Do you know what shim stack it went from and to between updates?


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    Quote Originally Posted by dp400 View Post
    Seems to be a fair amount of stiction. If I just let the air out and don't push down the fork will stay in the up position .
    When I compressed the forks with no air it was fairly smooth but it seemed like I had to push down with a little force the first time to get it to the full travel. After that it seems to go down ok.
    The action was smooth.
    I am going to try 50 psi which is well below the chart recommendations . Thinking I may have to add a fair amount of damping to keep it from being a pogo stick?
    I guess the only way to really know if everything is correct inside the fork is to have it looked at.
    Too wet to get out to do more testing for a few days.
    Get the sag set up with everything open, then set your rebound. Finally adjust high and low speed compression based on need. Too much dive while braking and cornering, more lsc. If it gets overwhelmed after successive big hits add hsc.

    I recently went through a similar set up issue with my lyrik. In the end I kept only 1 token (stock is two and at one point I had up to 4). With 1 token I dropped the pressure by 5 psi for a softer initial stroke, then added some lsc to keep the front ride height where I wanted it. I wish my fork had an external hsc adjusted as I feel that a little more would put me right where I want to be. The bottom line is don't be so concerned with getting exactly x% sag. Get it close, ride it, then use the adjusters to fineness tune.

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    your problem is to much grease on top of air piston causing chambers to not equalize properly, TRUST ME, clean old grease and do what fox recommends just lightly coat piston and add 3cc 20wt gold on top and make sure you hear chambers equalize when refilling with air.

  26. #26
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    First off drop the lowers and pull the air rod. Then make sure there is not too much grease on the air piston. From there pull the foam rings and soak them on Float Fluid. Also use a high quality suspension grease on the stanchions and I also grease the upper bushing as well. From there reassemble.

    Also I think you are running too much air pressure. I am 180 out of the shower and running 64 PSI with 1 orange and 1 blue volume reducer. Drop your pressure to 150 and add a single volume spacer. Run you HSC wide open and your LSC with 2-3 clicks in from wide open. Rebound should be very close to open as well, somewhere around 5 clicks from wide open.

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    ^Best to use Fox 20wt gold on the foam rings, not float fluid.

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    Quote Originally Posted by outlaw View Post
    your problem is to much grease on top of air piston causing chambers to not equalize properly.
    Definitely check this, here's my 2018 36 airspring from the factory. ~20% of the negative side reduced by grease and there was a crap ton in the stanchion above the piston. Fork had a swishing sound I thought was damper but that went away after I cleaned up so looks like it was grease getting sucked through transfer port. The wiper seals were bone dry from factory too.

    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues-20180124_090228.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmanxj View Post
    Definitely check this, here's my 2018 36 airspring from the factory. ~20% of the negative side reduced by grease and there was a crap ton in the stanchion above the piston. Fork had a swishing sound I thought was damper but that went away after I cleaned up so looks like it was grease getting sucked through transfer port. The wiper seals were bone dry from factory too.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This has also been an issue with the Fox 34 forks. It is baffling to me how Fox can charge $1000 for a fork, but can't get it assembled properly. Do they not train their assembly line workers? Do they fail to ever do QC. This isn't a one time issue but an ongoing problem.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmanxj View Post
    Definitely check this, here's my 2018 36 airspring from the factory. ~20% of the negative side reduced by grease and there was a crap ton in the stanchion above the piston. Fork had a swishing sound I thought was damper but that went away after I cleaned up so looks like it was grease getting sucked through transfer port. The wiper seals were bone dry from factory too.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Mine looked just like this also.
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cary View Post
    This has also been an issue with the Fox 34 forks. It is baffling to me how Fox can charge $1000 for a fork, but can't get it assembled properly. Do they not train their assembly line workers? Do they fail to ever do QC. This isn't a one time issue but an ongoing problem.
    Irritating for sure. Guess is they are simply dunking the piston head in a tub of grease on the line. Definitely not a hand applied "light coating" like the Fox service video shows, lol. That would take more time! I should email Fox, already busted them for having the wrong settings chart for 18' X2 online a few months back. They quickly corrected but still, think someone internally would catch that and not a customer 6 months after shock was released....

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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmanxj View Post
    Definitely check this, here's my 2018 36 airspring from the factory. ~20% of the negative side reduced by grease and there was a crap ton in the stanchion above the piston. Fork had a swishing sound I thought was damper but that went away after I cleaned up so looks like it was grease getting sucked through transfer port. The wiper seals were bone dry from factory too.

    FYI Spec. just swapped out my leaky Ohlins shock for a new Fox X2. One ride on it so far and the bike is so much better balanced and that X2 feel great in comparison!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I will definitely check this out. Is there a video showing how to do this work? I haven't taken a fork apart.
    After removing the extra grease have you guys noticed an improvement in the ride and action of the fork? What improvements did you feel?

    Thanks !!

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    Quote Originally Posted by dp400 View Post
    I will definitely check this out. Is there a video showing how to do this work? I haven't taken a fork apart.
    After removing the extra grease have you guys noticed an improvement in the ride and action of the fork? What improvements did you feel?
    Thanks !!
    It's pretty straightforward but you'll need 20wt gold fluid, new crush washers, and some basic tools (including torque wrench). You can reuse some of the glob of grease on the wipers and upper bushings. Here's the video from Fox: 2018 36 FLOAT NA2 Internally Adjusting Fork Travel | Bike Help Center | FOX. Note the bath oil volume is different with RC2 damper than they show in the video, it's 30cc damper side. Not the 40cc they show for the FIT4 version.

    You should notice improvement in overall fork action, particularly in small bump compliance, assuming there's also not an issue with the piston fit as mentioned in a post above. Worth a check once you clean up shaft and put back together. Before you install top cap and lowers, cycle the air shaft by hand and see if it slides freely.

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    FWIW, I'm running my 2018 RC2 36 with the following settings:
    31mm sag = 63 psi (by my crappy analog pump)
    tokens: 0
    rebound: 8 clicks from all the way closed (=5 from open?)
    HSC: 14 clicks from closed (=6 from open?)
    LSC: 16 clicks from closed (=10 from open?)

    I weigh about 162 lbs without gear, and am on a Nomad 3, so similar weight and bike to you. I feel like my current tune is a pretty good balance of pedaling efficiency and small bump compliance. It's pretty rare that I go really deep into the travel, but it will go there if necessary (last week I really stuffed it riding some root steps badly, but it soaked it up before firmly pushing me back up).

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    I know there is a "cost" to it - but could solve most if not all your issue w a Push coil conversion.

    I didnt have this fox36, but did have a 17 34 and also rode a Ribbon Air, Helm Air and a 2015 Pike for 2 years. One ride on coil and until an air fork takes a monumental leap forward - will never ride air again... If you look across the forums - many others stating the same...

  36. #36
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    I just noticed mt 36s making a clunking noise when lifting the wheel off of the ground like when doing a wheelie. It tops out with a clunk as it reaches full extension. Never noticed this before today - about 3 months of riding.
    I swear I read something about this in the hundreds of posts I've read but don't remember what the issue is and how to fix it.

    Anyone know what I'm talking about?

    Thanks

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by kamper11 View Post
    I know there is a "cost" to it - but could solve most if not all your issue w a Push coil conversion.

    I didnt have this fox36, but did have a 17 34 and also rode a Ribbon Air, Helm Air and a 2015 Pike for 2 years. One ride on coil and until an air fork takes a monumental leap forward - will never ride air again... If you look across the forums - many others stating the same...
    While I agree about the coil conversion, I would think his fork should perform well since itís so new and he is in the ďaverageĒ weight range for the fork. If the 36 wasnít the best platform for me I would have jumped ship long ago from Fox products.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by dp400 View Post
    I just noticed mt 36s making a clunking noise when lifting the wheel off of the ground like when doing a wheelie. It tops out with a clunk as it reaches full extension. Never noticed this before today - about 3 months of riding.
    I swear I read something about this in the hundreds of posts I've read but don't remember what the issue is and how to fix it.

    Anyone know what I'm talking about?

    Thanks
    It's a known issue with the 2018 topout bumper that looks like the one a couple posts up. Need to get the 2019 air shaft assembly.

  39. #39
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    Do you have a solution for your forks problems by now?

    I really have very similar issues with mine (36 2018 Grip). It even is developing that top out clunk your are describing. I too startet a discussion here, not knowing yours.

    My next step will be to take a look inside my fork and see for myself what my be causing the problems.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little_twin View Post
    160 psi? I don't ride fox, but most forks have similar sized air chambers and that seems excessive, especially to only get 30% sag.

    Make sure your rebound is fast enough. Slow rebound can lead to the issue you describe. Have you ridden it with the hsc and lsc backed all the way out.

    The most enlightening thing I was ever told was by my suspension tuner when I was racing motorcycles, "the spring holds you in the ideal position, the damping keeps you there by controlling movement".
    Deep. And I like it. Moto mechanics unlocking life's small mysteries all the time.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by firevsh2o View Post
    Do you have a solution for your forks problems by now?

    I really have very similar issues with mine (36 2018 Grip). It even is developing that top out clunk your are describing. I too startet a discussion here, not knowing yours.

    My next step will be to take a look inside my fork and see for myself what my be causing the problems.
    Some info in here was helpful too: http://forums.mtbr.com/components/20...t-1053361.html

  42. #42
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    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues

    Quote Originally Posted by firevsh2o View Post
    Do you have a solution for your forks problems by now?

    I really have very similar issues with mine (36 2018 Grip). It even is developing that top out clunk your are describing. I too startet a discussion here, not knowing yours.

    My next step will be to take a look inside my fork and see for myself what my be causing the problems.
    The top-out clunk is a result of the air spring shaft design on early 2018 MY forks. This has been remedied with the 2019 air spring shaft (which has been out for some time now despite it being early 2018 still). Your fork shouldnít develop a top-out clunk unless itís due to an related issue. Then again, I suppose itís possible that there was grease on the shaft which was acting in concert with the top-out bumper and dampening the action somewhat. Perhaps that grease has worked its way away from where it was initially.

    Getting into the fork is the right next step.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  43. #43
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    2016 34 airspring here. I pulled it out and it when boom. lots of pressure behind it and it looked like this, covered in slick honey. I reinstalled it after cleaning it and it works fine now.

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    ccv

  45. #45
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    My forks have not been opened up yet. Still tweeting setup.
    I does seem that my forks slowly build up pressure. After several rides it seems I only get 120mm of travel or so.
    Last week I noticed I was getting less travel again and the small bumps were more harsh.
    I took all the air out of the forks and did the zip tie seal air release deal. Lots of air comes out. Maybe it is supposed to?? I add about half my air pressure and pump the forks. I then fill the forks to my ride pressure. I then do the zip tie deal and more air leaks out and this time when the air leaked out at full air pressure the forks extended about 4 mm with each leg.
    Now running 50 psi with no tokens.
    Comp. a few clicks from open.
    Reb about 16 out for closed so may 6 or so from open.
    Again I'm ~155 lbs.
    After doing this it is very noticeable that the forks feel more buttery and smooth when push down on them.
    First ride out the forks felt great! Smoother over small bumps and getting more travel when riding same trails at speed.
    After a ride or two the forks slowly start going back to the harsher feeling with slightly less travel maybe each ride until it seems to level off and again back to square one.
    Need to get the forks to a suspension shop but the riding is great now in Santa Cruz so I'm dealing with it for now.
    The forks are pretty good always but I know they can be better.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Junersun View Post
    The 2018 36 still has the same issues with the air spring top cap (oiston) as previous years from what I've gathered. The tolerance it's made from isn't the greatest creating a lot of friction.

    If you read that thread then you know about 92 piston head. You can't use that but something similar that's already around is the vorsprung luftkappe. I have that on my hardtail and it's made a great improvement to my pike.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Echoing this - they havent fixed the air spring tollerance on the 2018. I have a 2016 and installed the 92 piston head - its like night and day. No more harshness.

    The luftkappe is the more commercial fix. Fox really should sort this out.

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    I have a 2018 160mm Fox 36 RC2 Performance Elite Boost (black stanchions), which lately has had zero small bump compliance. It feels like the fork is locked out over small bumps. I've got both HSC and LSC fully counter-clockwise, so no damping. I let all the air out of the fork, and I could get full travel when I compressed the fork. My o-ring stopped 8mm short of the end of the stanchion, but when I measured from the top edge of the dust wiper to the bottom edge of the o-ring it was 160mm. I aired up my fork again to 85 psi (v. suggested 109-113 psi), and there was no change in how the fork felt.

    As a result, I decided to service my fork. This is the second service for me. During the first service, I damaged one of the bushings, so I sent my fork into Fox to have the bushing replaced. I was hoping it wouldn't cost me more than $250, but Fox replaced all the bushings for free. And they installed new dust wipers. And they sent me the newish Enduro wipers I had been running back to me. Thanks Fox!

    For this second service, I decided to remove the air spring assembly to see if everything looked okay. I used the video linked to in post #33 to service my fork. Unlike in the video, when I let the air out of my fork, the air spring rod did not retract into the uppers. I pushed on the rod to fully compress it while depressing the schrader valve, and I repeated that a couple of times, but the air spring rod always returned to full extension.

    When I removed the air spring assembly, it didn't have quite as much grease on it as in gasmanxj's image, but there was a lot, and there was another big glob inside the uppers. (I recommend padding the air spring rod while you try to remove the retaining ring from the bottom of the air side upper tube. One slip of your screwdriver or pick and you could scratch the rod. Also, don't lever your screwdriver/pick against the bottom edge of the uppers! That flange is very thin, and it looks like it will bend easily.)

    Here is what my air spring assembly looked like after wiping off all the grease:

    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues-img_0374.jpg

    I pushed a couple of wadded up paper towels through the air side upper to remove the glob of grease inside the air side upper. Then I lightly greased with Slick Honey as shown in the video and reinstalled.

    The foam rings under my dust wipers were dry. I guess I need to remember to turn my fork upside down for a few minutes before each ride. I removed the foam rings, and I cleaned them by soaking them in Fox Gold oil and squeezing the oil out with paper towels. When the foam rings were clean, I soaked them in Fox Gold oil and reinstalled. Then, I lightly coated the insides of the dust wipers with Fox Gold oil as well as the outside of the lower portion of the upper tubes for reassembly.

    I added 3cc of Fox Gold on top of the air spring, and after I got the lowers back on I added 10cc to the air side lowers (10mm nut) and **30cc** to the damper side lowers (15mm nut) as specified in this Fox Bath Oil chart. Check the chart for the correct amount of oil for your specific fork.

    Once I got my fork back on my bike, I went for a parking lot test ride. Pump, pump, pump. Darn! The fork felt as harsh as ever. I tried again: pump, pump, pump, but the fork still felt stiff and harsh. Now what? I coasted to a stop. Then I pumped the fork again, and this time the fork felt smooth and silky. Obviously, something equalized. The next day, I checked the air pressure in my fork before going on a ride, and the pressure was only around 70 psi--lower than I would expect from connecting my shock pump--so I reinflated to 85 psi. On my test ride, the fork felt much, much better. I ran it with HSC/LSC wide open, fully counter clockwise.

    There is still something different about my fork v. when it was new. When I first installed my fork, it was as if any tiny bump would cause the fork to compress 1 cm. I estimate I've got about 180 hours on my fork.
    Last edited by happyriding; 04-12-2018 at 11:59 AM.

  48. #48
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    I never felt that my '18 RC2 as bad as others, but I was curious to see if I could make it any better. So I pulled it apart, and sure enough there was a giant glob of Slick Honey on the air piston, as well as inside the air shaft. Same story on my 34 Performance. It looks like the person assembling just stabs the air shaft into a tub of slick honey then into the air shaft. On my 34, the felt dust wiper looked nicely soaked in Gold oil, but on the 36 it looked pretty dry. It will be interesting to see if I actually notice a difference next time I ride.

    I'm used to dealing with equalizing chambers on reservoir shocks, so having to equalize the fork after reassembly didn't come as a surprise to me.

  49. #49
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    I just got my 2018 RC2 back from Fox after requesting a checkout. This fork has felt like a jackhammer compared to both of my 34 Fit4's I've run on my Ripley, from day one. Will note this is a 160mm 27.5" on a Bronson. Did the grease check, no issue there. They say nothing is wrong and but at least they upgraded the air spring to the 2019 model as I inquired, but they never contacted me about anything. Next thing I know, my fork is sitting at a local bait shop waiting for pickup(WTF? Can't ship it back to my house?). I would have liked to discuss how a 220# rider like myself only has one 1 token in it, has HSC/LSC full open with recommended 96-100 psi for 20% sag, and still feels harsh. My ShockWiz confirmed my HSC was waay too much while riding in Moab, but I had no option left but to let air out. 25% sag did not fix anything. I would have considered paying for a damper swap to the Fit4, because I love the 2018 34 I have, but too late now, didn't give me a chance. So, I just ordered a Luftkappe. I'll put the fork back on my bike once I install that and we'll see if it helps or I possibly move on to the new Lyric.
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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by tuskenraider View Post
    I just got my 2018 RC2 back from Fox after requesting a checkout. This fork has felt like a jackhammer compared to both of my 34 Fit4's I've run on my Ripley, from day one. Will note this is a 160mm 27.5" on a Bronson. Did the grease check, no issue there. They say nothing is wrong and but at least they upgraded the air spring to the 2019 model as I inquired, but they never contacted me about anything. Next thing I know, my fork is sitting at a local bait shop waiting for pickup(WTF? Can't ship it back to my house?). I would have liked to discuss how a 220# rider like myself only has one 1 token in it, has HSC/LSC full open with recommended 96-100 psi for 20% sag, and still feels harsh. My ShockWiz confirmed my HSC was waay too much while riding in Moab, but I had no option left but to let air out. 25% sag did not fix anything. I would have considered paying for a damper swap to the Fit4, because I love the 2018 34 I have, but too late now, didn't give me a chance. So, I just ordered a Luftkappe. I'll put the fork back on my bike once I install that and we'll see if it helps or I possibly move on to the new Lyric.

    Call them and talk to the Techs, they are always super helpful with me on the phone. I've sent more than my share of forks and shocks back over the years, and they've always been awesome to deal with and helped me out. But they didn't ever call me to talk about anything, just went off my RA info. If you need to talk to them, call the techs BEFORE tracking says they have you fork would be my suggestion.
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by tuskenraider View Post
    They say nothing is wrong and but at least they upgraded the air spring to the 2019 model as I inquired, but they never contacted me about anything.
    I checked my invoice from Fox, which I got when I had my bushings replaced, and there is an item that says something like, "2018 air spring upgrade per TSB", so I think that's why my air spring looks different than the images posted previously.

    I checked Fox's Technical Service Bulletins (TSB's), but there's nothing about the 2018 air piston.

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andeh View Post
    I'm used to dealing with equalizing chambers on reservoir shocks, so having to equalize the fork after reassembly didn't come as a surprise to me.
    How did you equalize your fork?

  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    How did you equalize your fork?
    Pump it up partially, compress until you feel/hear it equalize, pump it up some more, compress, etc. Same as a shock. Its easier on a fork because you're talking about <100 PSI usually, compared to 200-250 on a shock.

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andeh View Post
    Pump it up partially, compress until you feel/hear it equalize, pump it up some more, compress, etc. Same as a shock. Its easier on a fork because you're talking about <100 PSI usually, compared to 200-250 on a shock.
    Thanks. I checked the Fox Owner's Manual, and there's nothing about equalizing the fork, so I just followed the service video which said to inflate to your desired pressure before sliding the lowers on. Do you leave your fork uninflated until after your fork is fully reassembled? That's what I always did on my previous Fox 36 Talas 160mm.

  55. #55
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    I honestly can't remember. I may not have, or just put in enough air to get the piston to extend full length. I think the only reason they are suggesting you air it up is to get the piston to extend to full length so that you can screw the nuts on both the damper and air shaft easily.

  56. #56
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    I found Fox's parts diagram for the 2019 air spring, which has some different greasing instructions:

    http://www.ridefox.com/fox17/img/hel...Assemblies.pdf

    APPLY GREASE AROUND PISTON, ON AIR SHAFT, BETWEEN BUMPER AND NEG PLATE, AND A THIN LAYER ON ENTIRE LENGTH OF PISTON BORE OF UPPER TUBE ID
    There's nothing about greasing the entire length of the rod, like the tech does in the service video.

  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by tuskenraider View Post
    I would have liked to discuss how a 220# rider like myself only has one 1 token in it, has HSC/LSC full open with recommended 96-100 psi for 20% sag, and still feels harsh. My ShockWiz confirmed my HSC was waay too much while riding in Moab, but I had no option left but to let air out. 25% sag did not fix anything.
    Fox recommends 109-113 psi for my weight, and I'm running 85 psi, and from eyeballing it I don't think I'm even at 25% sag, so I might try 80 psi. I'm running HSC/LSC all the way counter-clockwise, so no damping. I also have one orange token in my fork.

    If riders our weight are running HSC/LSC fully counter-clockwise, then doesn't that mean that lighter riders are even worse off?

    Last fall, I was riding my fork in Moab, and before I damaged my bushing I was running 90 psi, maybe 7 clicks of LSC from fully counter clockwise and HSC wide open, and my fork felt darn good. Today, I was playing with LSC and trying to see its effect when braking, and even with LSC dialed all the way fully clockwise my fork would dive when I used my brakes.

  58. #58
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    The fork will always dive when you use your brakes - it combats weight shifts at low speed, but won't eliminate it. I guarantee you'll notice the additional harshness on small bumps if you crank the LSC.

    My 2018 fork feels great so far, but I'm likely going to pull apart the air spring and clear out any excess grease. Those of you who are experiencing issues with midstroke support and running to little air pressure are probably experiencing the same issue - if the negative spring is undersized due to excess grease buildup, which appears to be a common assembly issue, the fork will feel harsh in the early travel. You'll run too little air pressure to compensate, and that will leave the fork feeling divey later in the stroke.

    It does suck that Fox hasn't figured out their QC on these forks yet, but the good news is that its an easy fix.

    For reference, I'm 170 lbs and running 70 PSI with great small bump compliance and support.

  59. #59
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    Agreed, I'm running mine at 62 psi (162 lbs without gear) and it feels great. (Shockwiz agrees that everything is right except it keeps wanting me to put in more LSC on climbs, which I ignore because that's not a priority.) I pulled mine open and cleaned off the excess grease too.

  60. #60
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    I guarantee you'll notice the additional harshness on small bumps if you crank the LSC.
    Okay. Because I was having trouble with small bump compliance before I serviced my fork, I'm loathe to use any LSC damping.

    My 2018 fork feels great so far, but I'm likely going to pull apart the air spring and clear out any excess grease.
    Here's another tidbit about that excess grease: Fox's Service Center replaced or added something to my air spring when they replaced my bushings, so they took the air spring apart, and yet mine still had a ton of grease on it.

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    Here's another tidbit about that excess grease: Fox's Service Center replaced or added something to my air spring when they replaced my bushings, so they took the air spring apart, and yet mine still had a ton of grease on it.
    Yes they will have modded the top out bumper with updated parts to prevent the harsh top out clunk.

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Draper View Post
    Yes they will have modded the top out bumper with updated parts to prevent the harsh top out clunk.
    I just sent mine back to Fox in Cali for this issue. Wondering if I will have to pull the air spring apart when I get it back to clean out the negative chamber of 5 gallons of slick honey...
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Draper View Post
    Yes they will have modded the top out bumper with updated parts to prevent the harsh top out clunk.
    I read about that, but I never experienced that with my fork.

    Comparing the picture of my air spring v. the picture of gasmanxj's air spring, it looks to me like the silver bullet head to the left of my rubber bumper takes up a lot of volume in the negative air chamber.
    Last edited by happyriding; 04-14-2018 at 08:13 PM.

  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    I read about that, but I never experienced that with my fork.

    Comparing the picture of my air spring v. the picture of gasmanxj's air spring, it looks to me like the the silver bullet head to the left of my rubber bumper takes up a lot of volume in the negative air chamber.
    It does take up volume. But what is worse, a knock at topout or a slightly smaller negative air volume?.
    Last edited by Rick Draper; 04-22-2018 at 02:43 AM.

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    I'm now running 80 psi, and I removed the lone volume spacer because I'm not getting anywhere near full travel (I still have more than 35mm of travel left after riding chunk but not doing any drops). I'm going to try 75 psi tomorrow.

    It feels like my fork has too much stiction: when I slowly shift my weight forward the fork doesn't compress immediately, instead I have to add more weight until the fork breaks free and compresses. My fork feels decent in the chunk, but I would like to get some more small bump compliance.

    I've been turning my fork upside for a minute or so before I start my ride and I can see oil coating the stanchions.
    Last edited by happyriding; 04-23-2018 at 11:12 AM.

  66. #66
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    Take a look at the pressure chart on Pivots site. It's much more realistic to the correct pressures than what you will find on Fox's site.

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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    I'm now running 80 psi, and I removed the lone volume spacer because I'm not getting anywhere near full travel (I still have more than 35mm of travel left after riding chunk but not doing any drops). I'm going to try 75 psi tomorrow.

    It feels like my fork has too much stiction: when I slowly shift my weight forward the fork doesn't compress immediately, instead I have to add more weight until the fork breaks free and compresses. My fork feels decent in the chunk, but I would like to get some more small bump compliance.

    I've been turning my fork upside for a minute or so before I start my ride and I can see oil coating the stanchions.
    Had exactly the same issue. Fork felt great hauling ass, but slower chunky stuff was horrible. Was constantly getting bounced off small trail obstacles. Pretty scary on techy terrain. Had one volume spacer in and still never came close to using full travel. Tried every possible combo of pressure/volume spacers/damping settings I could think of. Finally gave up and ordered a Vorsprung LuftKappe. Installed it yesterday and rode it this morning. Holy s**t! Like a completely different fork. Smooth and supple over trail chatter but still ramps up smoothly on bigger hits. The increase in front wheel traction in rough corners was mind blowing. Could not believe how much of a difference it made. For around $80 USD it's a no brainer.

  68. #68
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    What's your weight, fork pressure, & LSC setting?

    I'm just curious because I'm on the low-mid range of weight and feel like the 36 was a huge upgrade from my old '15 Pike on lower speed stuff. The Luftkappe sounds nice, but I'm hesitant to upgrade if I'm able to tune it stock to my liking.

    It kind of sounds like you may have had a tolerance issue that crops up.

  69. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andeh View Post
    What's your weight, fork pressure, & LSC setting?

    I'm just curious because I'm on the low-mid range of weight and feel like the 36 was a huge upgrade from my old '15 Pike on lower speed stuff. The Luftkappe sounds nice, but I'm hesitant to upgrade if I'm able to tune it stock to my liking.

    It kind of sounds like you may have had a tolerance issue that crops up.
    I'm about 185 geared up to ride. Ran the pressure as high as 80 and as low as 65. At 80 I probably only used a max of 110mm of travel (out of 140), even in chunk. There was zero small bump compliance. Kept lowering the pressure until I got to 65. Felt better on the small stuff, but still not great. At higher pressures I was running zero LSC. At the low end I used 5 or 6 clicks out keep the fork from diving as much while braking.
    I do agree that I likely have a fork with the air piston tolerance issue. If yours feels good, the Luftkappe probably isn't necessary. On the other hand, I seriously can't believe how much better the fork feels with it installed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ripn View Post
    Had exactly the same issue. Fork felt great hauling ass, but slower chunky stuff was horrible. Was constantly getting bounced off small trail obstacles. Pretty scary on techy terrain. Had one volume spacer in and still never came close to using full travel. Tried every possible combo of pressure/volume spacers/damping settings I could think of. Finally gave up and ordered a Vorsprung LuftKappe. Installed it yesterday and rode it this morning. Holy s**t! Like a completely different fork. Smooth and supple over trail chatter but still ramps up smoothly on bigger hits. The increase in front wheel traction in rough corners was mind blowing. Could not believe how much of a difference it made. For around $80 USD it's a no brainer.
    Just ran into a guy on the trail today with this mod. and he couldn't say enough good things. Just pushing on his fork compared to mine was huge! Both forks are 18' fox 36.

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    Actually after looking at your profile, that guy is probably you!! Charlie?? Lol

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    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues

    Quote Originally Posted by FranzV View Post
    Actually after looking at your profile, that guy is probably you!! Charlie?? Lol
    Nope, not Charlie. But it does look like we are in the same hood.

  73. #73
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    I've had a few rides on my 36 RC2 with the Push ACS3 spring. I only weigh 130lbs so the original air spring wasn't a good fit (the air seals introduced to much stiction). The coil conversion, although heavier, is a much better match for the fork for my lighter weight. I actually dial in more LSC and rebound now because the fork is basically stiction free.

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by ripn View Post
    Had exactly the same issue. Fork felt great hauling ass, but slower chunky stuff was horrible. Was constantly getting bounced off small trail obstacles. Pretty scary on techy terrain. Had one volume spacer in and still never came close to using full travel. Tried every possible combo of pressure/volume spacers/damping settings I could think of. Finally gave up and ordered a Vorsprung LuftKappe. Installed it yesterday and rode it this morning. Holy s**t! Like a completely different fork. Smooth and supple over trail chatter but still ramps up smoothly on bigger hits. The increase in front wheel traction in rough corners was mind blowing. Could not believe how much of a difference it made. For around $80 USD it's a no brainer.

    I've had similar issues on my 2018 36 as well, couldn't ever get it to fell good. The Luftkappe sounds solid. I was going to get a Push coil kit, but might give this some thought now.
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  75. #75
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    Another +1 for the Luftkappe making a huge difference. I was really struggling to find a happy middle ground on my 2018 36 (rc2). Any setting that let me use the full travel was spongey, any supportive setting was leaving inches unused. I replaced the old style airshaft with the 2019 revised version, scrapped off/out gobs of slick honey, installed the Luftkappe, and wow, big improvement, even with the recommended settings.

    I'm about 210 riding weight but dropping down to 70psi and using the minimum recommended range for the damper has really improved the feel. I attribute most/all of the improvement to the Luftkappe, and maybe a bit to the excessive slickhoney, there was easily twice as much on top of the airspring as the recommended 3cc oil they say to put in there.

    Vorsprung has provided a worthy, and pretty simple DIY upgrade.

  76. #76
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    Those of you who had issues with your 36 and now have the Luftkappe, did you try the MRP Ramp Control first by any chance?

    I have one of those in now, and it feels much better than stock, but not sure it's great.
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  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by rscecil007 View Post
    Those of you who had issues with your 36 and now have the Luftkappe, did you try the MRP Ramp Control first by any chance?

    I have one of those in now, and it feels much better than stock, but not sure it's great.
    Ramp control and Luftkappe do two totally different things.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rscecil007 View Post
    I've had similar issues on my 2018 36 as well, couldn't ever get it to fell good. The Luftkappe sounds solid. I was going to get a Push coil kit, but might give this some thought now.
    I've been looking at the Push coil kit as well, but based on ripn's recommendation I think I'm going to try a LuftKappe first. Thanks for posting ripn! With the pin tool and shipping, the LuftKappe is around $125 US.

    As things stand now, I've got a $900 fork with no adjustments.

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by crimedog View Post
    Ramp control and Luftkappe do two totally different things.
    Right, no argument here and I understand that. But those 2 and a Push coil kit are all just different flavors of trying to improve the 36's performance. Maybe I didn't make it clear, but I was just curious if anyone had a comparison b/w the two I asked about.
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    I put the Luftkappe in my 2018 RC2 and it made a difference, but when I'm still riding at 220 lbs. kitted up and my compression adjusters are wide open, shit is ****ed up. I've sent it to Push to soften it up and to hopefully have use of the adjusters.............
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  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by rscecil007 View Post
    Right, no argument here and I understand that. But those 2 and a Push coil kit are all just different flavors of trying to improve the 36's performance. Maybe I didn't make it clear, but I was just curious if anyone had a comparison b/w the two I asked about.
    I had looked at this: https://www.sdcomponents.com.au/dynamic-volume-chamber but this is more like the behavior you'd get from the MRP (different mechanism though).

    In the end it seemed the expansion of the negative air chamber was a simple way to achieve the change I needed. Before the change spring pressure that allowed me to use full travel was too low to be supportive mid-stroke and sag was excessive. After installing the Luftkappe I was able to increase the pressure a bit, but still well below the "recommended" value. It still took me some trailside fiddling to hone in on the right settings, but I'm now happy with the performance.

    Edit to add: https://www.bikerumor.com/2017/06/28...-size-matters/ which I found very helpful in understanding the effect of installing something to expand the negative air chamber.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tuskenraider View Post
    I put the Luftkappe in my 2018 RC2 and it made a difference, but when I'm still riding at 220 lbs. kitted up and my compression adjusters are wide open, shit is ****ed up. I've sent it to Push to soften it up and to hopefully have use of the adjusters.............
    So it wasn't that big of a difference with the luftkappe? That's how my stock fork is now, no volume spacers, I'm 200lbs with no gear, have hsc and lsc basically wide open. I also took my fork apart and removed the excess grease. I ride some pretty good chunk/gnar and the fork is pretty stiff. High speed chatter is what drives me nuts. Fork Only bottoms when I screw up on jump trails. Good thing I paid extra for hsc/lsc....

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    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues

    Quote Originally Posted by FranzV View Post
    So it wasn't that big of a difference with the luftkappe? That's how my stock fork is now, no volume spacers, I'm 200lbs with no gear, have hsc and lsc basically wide open. I also took my fork apart and removed the excess grease. I ride some pretty good chunk/gnar and the fork is pretty stiff. High speed chatter is what drives me nuts. Fork Only bottoms when I screw up on jump trails. Good thing I paid extra for hsc/lsc....
    In my case the difference was huge. Iím still playing with air pressure, but 75 psi with no spacers is feeling pretty damn good. As I mentioned, Iím about 185 geared to ride and was running 65 psi and one spacer prior to Luftkappe.

  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by tuskenraider View Post
    I put the Luftkappe in my 2018 RC2 and it made a difference, but when I'm still riding at 220 lbs. kitted up and my compression adjusters are wide open, shit is ****ed up. I've sent it to Push to soften it up and to hopefully have use of the adjusters.............
    What does Push do to soften up the fork?

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    By the way, there's a review of the Push ACS3 coil kit in the current MountainFlyer magazine. The reviewer said that the HSC/LSC knobs had much more effect per click after the install.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    What does Push do to soften up the fork?
    They alter the shim stack and damper oil viscosity...


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  87. #87
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    Well, after all you guys talking up the Luftkappe and a ride where I deliberately sought out the chunkiest trails causing sore hands, I ordered one myself. I threw in a set of SKF seals for good measure too.

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    So an interesting data point on the '18 Fox 36 setup: a couple weeks ago, I took a 1-on-1 skills clinic with a coach here (former pro enduro & DH racer) that included a full bike setup before we started. I went into it with an open mind, and he ended up changing my suspension quite a bit. At 165 lbs, I had been previously running at 62 psi, 0 tokens, HSC fully open and LSC like 3 clicks from open. I forget how much rebound. I had come to that setup based on posts here and with Shockwiz. He bumped it up to 74 psi with HSC & LSC 6 clicks from open, and a few more clicks of rebound.

    His rationale was twofold: first, he was able to get it to pack down with 3 quick arm pumps in the parking lot (and he weighed 20 lbs less than me), and second, that it balanced the bike with the rear suspension (which he also added a few clicks of compression and rebound) and poppy. He said part of the problem people have with tuning 36s is that they're mostly on long travel, slack head angle bikes, so that when they try to set up sag in the garage/parking lot, the angle fights compression, so they end up running too low of pressure. Then when they ride, it feels harsh because it packs out, so they open compression.

    I won't claim that I went from intermediate to expert in one class, or try to dive into what he taught, but with how he changed my body positioning (to be higher, more centered, and use more shoulders for control), the suspension changes really made sense. He then had me do all the drills with the suspension locked out, and even like that, it felt really smooth due to the positioning changes.

    I've since had 1 good long ride at Santa Cruz, and the changes were definitely an improvement. Sure it's a bit firmer on smooth stuff... but it's also way more controlled and responsive in the rough. And faster too!

    Ironically, my fork ended up with almost exactly the Fox recommended settings for my weight. My shock (DHX2) was a bit further away from the Fox suggestion (about 3 clicks more rebound but 6 clicks less compression).

    So... TLDR? Fox's suggestions may not be super crazy. Riding technique makes a big difference. YMMV, no warranty implied, etc.

    PS: I already had a Luftkappe on order before I took the class, and mentioned that to him. He said: "You're probably not going to notice much difference at all. The '18 EVOL chamber did pretty much the same thing. It won't really hurt to install it though, I just don't think the '18 needs it. The older ones did."

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    I'll be curious to see what you think about the Luftkappe once you have it installed. Even in the 18's it increases the negative spring by quite a bit.

  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by ripn View Post
    I'll be curious to see what you think about the Luftkappe once you have it installed. Even in the 18's it increases the negative spring by quite a bit.
    Sure, I'll report back later. I pulled apart my fork to install it this weekend, but discovered that I have the older style air shaft assembly that Vorsprung recommends upgrading off of (due to common top-out knock). I don't have top-out knock, but figured I may as well do what Steve recommends if I'm going to the trouble of installing it. So I'm waiting on the new '19 style air shaft to arrive now...

  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andeh View Post
    So an interesting data point on the '18 Fox 36 setup: a couple weeks ago, I took a 1-on-1 skills clinic with a coach here (former pro enduro & DH racer) that included a full bike setup before we started. I went into it with an open mind, and he ended up changing my suspension quite a bit. At 165 lbs, I had been previously running at 62 psi, 0 tokens, HSC fully open and LSC like 3 clicks from open. I forget how much rebound. I had come to that setup based on posts here and with Shockwiz. He bumped it up to 74 psi with HSC & LSC 6 clicks from open, and a few more clicks of rebound.
    Can you give us your rebound settings exactly ?

    Mine are :

    165 lbs too.
    70 PSI
    HSC 8 from open
    LSC 9 from open
    Rebound 9 from open
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  92. #92
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    I believe I'm 7 clicks from closed.

  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andeh View Post
    So an interesting data point on the '18 Fox 36 setup: a couple weeks ago, I took a 1-on-1 skills clinic with a coach here (former pro enduro & DH racer) that included a full bike setup before we started. ...
    I'm actually interested in this. I've spent a decent amount of time reading forums, watching youtube videos, and doing the "howz that feel" routine on my bikes. I'm pretty happy with where I've landed on this fork setup-wise. I've been thinking of doing a skills assessment IRL with someone who would help tell me what I'm still screwing up, and how to keep progressing. Combining that with a bike setup review would be really valuable, imho.

  94. #94
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    Fox fork not working well

    Super bummed about my fork thus far. I got it 3 days ago and have 3 rides on it. There seems to be almost zero small bump compliance. I set the pressure based on the sticker. I am riding a new Pivot Mach 5.5. Based on the sticker suggestion my sag was about 5%. I tried a lap at 60 psi and was getting about 4 inches of travel out of a 160 fork. I lowered it to 50 at got another 1/4 inch. I lowered it to 40 and am getting all of 4.5 inches. The stanchion measures at about 6.2" and when I let all the air out it goes all the way down. So I was trying to hit every rock and jump today and still getting nowhere near the expected travel (4.5" max). I have a Yeti Sb5c that has a 150 Pike on it. I get full travel every few rides and tons of small bump compliance. I am not giving up but pretty depressed right now about a new bike with a new bigger fork for more aggressive riding that gets less travel and feels harsh. Maybe it takes some time to break in or run it at 30 psi! I am going to call Pivot and Fox tomorrow. I don't know if it has any token's or spacers or whatever Fox calls them. I haven't had time to open it up. Sorry to rant but at this point I would say it's the worst fork I have had save Manitou 2 I had 100 years ago.
    Last edited by Truckeemtb; 05-17-2018 at 08:55 PM. Reason: typos

  95. #95
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    Get it opened up. It will likely look like this. Ive had 3 rides on this before I crashed & punctured my lung, another story.
    I dont think its worth messing with settings until you do a basic cleanup so they are running as they are meant to.
    Get some crush washers in & some gold 20 oil.
    2018 Fox Factory 36 setup and issues-img_20180527_121227-1-.jpg

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    OK, I will find some time to pull it apart. The dirt is good and it ain't going to last here so will wait until it's dusty which will probably be in the next few days!

    Sorry about the lung, that's no bueno.

    So I took a token out am running it at 40 psi and adjusted rebound accordingly and it's working much better. It just seems off that the psi needs to be so low to get near full travel on a big hit. I know I am light but I know there are other riders out there much lighter.

    Will check for goop and oil levels and maybe try something with a thinner viscosity so I can add more air and token back... work in progress. There is hope.

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    Any more updates from those who have installed a Luftkappe? Trying to figure out my best course of action, as small bump compliance is basically not there for me. I'm guessing maybe my fork is over-greased, but if the Luftkappe is a good addition ON TOP OF cleaning out the grease, I might just do that upgrade at the same time. I'm not sure whether I'm running the '18 or '19 style airshaft as I haven't opened it up yet, but it's on a Performance 36 that came on the Ripmo I bought in June.

  98. #98
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    There is still a lack of Small Bump even on the on the 2019 grip 2 factory. Added a luftkappe - like butter off the top and loads of mid stroke - well worth it. Does make the fork ramp up even with no spacers so only really ideal if you run 1 or more spacers right now. A really good upgrade on all 36's - even the latest one.

  99. #99
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    Pulled the air shaft from my RC2 and there was a glob of grease. Glad I've found this thread and knew where to look. Can't wait to try it out tomorrow. I had issues getting full travel even with HSC wide open. I have no problems getting full travel on my float x2 and at least bottom out once a ride. Thanks everyone. Very surprised my new fork came from the factory like that, kinda defeats the purpose of the EVOL feature.
    I'm still playing with my settings and haven't really found something I like. I think removing all that grease will help me form a better baseline. I'm 190lbs using 87psi. rebound = 6, LSC=15, HSC = wide open.
    I'm looking at some of the rebound settings above and they seem very high (fast). I think I saw a 13 which sounds very fast.

  100. #100
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    What a difference that made today. 25 miled 2k elevation. Feels like a new fork. Small bump is much better. Its probably a combo of more neg volume and fresh oil. Im closer to 20% sag and using more travel. I still have 10% left before i use all travel. Tech climbing and traction is better with more sag. I like it.

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  101. #101
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    2018 has had similar issues. Build quality from factory seems to be inconsistent. Went to an MRP Ribbon and never looked back.

  102. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karve View Post
    There is still a lack of Small Bump even on the on the 2019 grip 2 factory. Added a luftkappe - like butter off the top and loads of mid stroke - well worth it. Does make the fork ramp up even with no spacers so only really ideal if you run 1 or more spacers right now. A really good upgrade on all 36's - even the latest one.
    Totally agree - ive got a 2019 grip2 36 and the small bump was terrible. im still playing with the settings now but its much better with the luftkappe

  103. #103
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    Small bump is much better once ive pulled the air shaft and removed all the grease from the negative side and lowered my pressure so i can use more travel. I've stopped using sag as a reference for setting up pressure as advised by many experts. Works much better for me. I'd like to try a luftkappe as well.

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  104. #104
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    Still super unhappy with 2018 Fox 36. No small bump compliance and packs up in the middle of the stroke but fine of medium jumps (I don't do the big boy ones). I was ready to sell the bike (Pivot 5.5 and or the fork). I borrowed a shock wiz for a bit and ended up with the same settings I started with and 42 psi.

    Admittedly I don't know much about suspension but I know a tiny bit from a lot of mtn biking, a lot of different bikes/forks as well as lots of dirt biking (motos) to be dangerous. I am only 5'9" and 145 lbs so I have also struggled to get it right on dirt bikes. I tried lowering but it made it worse.

    So back to mtn bikes. I broke my hand 6 weeks ago so I haven't been riding, I decided to try the Vorsprung and a 2019 piston. It just got it installed today, I haven't ridden it, my hand is still healing BUT the garage and driveway testing are positive. It doesn't feel anything like it did before. Seems soft/ plush of the top with little sticktion and progressive to mid stroke. I can't push it down enough with my messed up hand but I am optimistic that it's solved or will be MUCH better.

    I am probably wrong but my gut is telling me the 36 was really originally designed more for sending it and big hit/ heavier riders. Now it's standard issue on medium travel bikes. My hope is I get more small bump compliance, mid travel feel (without it packing up) but still work for medium to bigger hits. Hopefully I can run a little more psi and make that happen.

    Sorry for the ramble but I know I am not the only one with this issue. When healthy I ride 15-20 hours a week and I have noticed almost all, save a few super aggressive riders (that are both heavier and/or are really sending it) are only using up half or 3/4 or so over the total travel. No point in a 160 if you are only using 130. Anyway, rant and ramble over, will report back at some point. Fingers, toes and wallet crossed.

  105. #105
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    For my part, I did exactly what you described (2019 air spring + Luftkappe) and found a significant improvement in sensitivity off the top, while still keeping enough air in the system to be supportive on big(ger) hits. Previously I could get full travel and sensitivity with a mushy feeling in the middle, or I could get support but without full travel for most riding and stiff top end but finding a happy middle ground was a challenge. With the extra negative air volume I'm much happier with the fork. That said I outweigh you by 50lbs riding weight.

    I think your gut feeling is largely right about the 36's overall design intent, coming in from a history of riding smaller "trail" forks and never having ridden the 36 extensively until this generation of bikes.

  106. #106
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    hi guys! may i ask help. currently my bike is 2018 giant reign 1. 5, with 2019 fox 36 180mm grip2. can i ask help for the fork settings? my weight is 220 lbs plus gear maybe around 5lbs. i dont do jumps. just mild drops/ roots.
    what is a good base settings for the air psi, hsc , lsc and rebound?
    thank you

  107. #107
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    For my part, once I got the airspring side sorted out, I'm more or less on the Fox recommended settings for my weight. I'm on the older RC2 damper, not the newer Grip2, so not sure if there are tricks involved in the setup for that (though at least in the press everyone's gaga over it so presumably it can be suitably configured). I'd suggest starting with the Fox suggested settings and if you're not satisfied, adjust air pressure/spacers up/down from that baseline as needed. In the end, I couldn't find a stock configuration that was goldilocks for me, but the Vorsprung Luftkappe helped resolve the issue I was having. Depending on the problems you have, ymmv.

  108. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by b0bg View Post
    For my part, once I got the airspring side sorted out, I'm more or less on the Fox recommended settings for my weight. I'm on the older RC2 damper, not the newer Grip2, so not sure if there are tricks involved in the setup for that (though at least in the press everyone's gaga over it so presumably it can be suitably configured). I'd suggest starting with the Fox suggested settings and if you're not satisfied, adjust air pressure/spacers up/down from that baseline as needed. In the end, I couldn't find a stock configuration that was goldilocks for me, but the Vorsprung Luftkappe helped resolve the issue I was having. Depending on the problems you have, ymmv.
    Thank you for the inputs bro

  109. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by jun4785 View Post
    hi guys! may i ask help. currently my bike is 2018 giant reign 1. 5, with 2019 fox 36 180mm grip2. can i ask help for the fork settings? my weight is 220 lbs plus gear maybe around 5lbs. i dont do jumps. just mild drops/ roots.
    what is a good base settings for the air psi, hsc , lsc and rebound?
    thank you
    Here's a pretty good tutorial on the Grip2 settings.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=D9vsOHmmmpo&t=20s

  110. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwapik View Post
    Here's a pretty good tutorial on the Grip2 settings.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=D9vsOHmmmpo&t=20s
    Thanks for this sir

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    Does anyone know if the 2018 RC2 damper has any "useless clicks" in the LSC or HSC adjustment? I believe I read somewhere that some clicks at either end of the newer Grip2 damper adjustment don't do anything or have a negligible effect. I am trying to fine-tune my suspension setup and don't have enough confidence that I can tell the difference one click in either direction so I just want to ensure I am not tuning within a range of settings that have no effect anyway. Also Fox recommends starting from 15 clicks from closed on both HSC and LSC, and I want to understand if this is due to this being the middle setting, or if this is the minimum usable setting for both. I have read some of the more knowledgable people on this forum recommending tuning LSC before messing with HSC at all and I am trying to adhere to that advice.

    Bike feels pretty good overall, I have good front-end traction and use full travel on the biggest stuff I ride with no harsh bottom-outs, and am working to find the right LSC settings that prevent brake-diving as much as possible.

    My setup for reference:
    2018 Fox 36 Factory RC2 160mm with 2019 air spring and Vorsprung Luftkappe
    Riding weight ~165-170
    70 psi, rebound 11 from closed
    LSC 11 from closed, HSC wide open

    Thank you.
    Last edited by burkawitz206; 07-16-2019 at 07:04 AM.

  112. #112
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    Some of the earlier Grip2 forks had some extra clicks, but I haven't heard of any on the RC2.

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