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Fork Set-up
To get the most from your suspension you need to have the proper setup, here are some tips to help you on your way to the perfect set up for you. Each rider will be different as rider weight, style, height, riding speed, ride location all come into play, and it would be rare to have two riders with all these factors exactly the same. So it is useful to point out here that there is no point setting up your fork like a pro racer if you are not a pro racer. It may hinder your performance rather than improve it. Here are some basic guidelines to get you started. When tuning, change only one adjustment at a time.

 

 Setup

1. Adjust spring rate to reach desired sag;

 

XC = 15-20%
Trail riding = 25%
Freeride/Downhill = 30-35%

 

Note; rear shock on a VPP trail bike= 30%

 

Ensure rider is in riding position and in riding kit. If using a coil spring, the spring will need to be changed to achieve proper sag. Adjusting preload can be used to fine tune sag but this only affects the ride height and doesn’t change how “stiff” the suspension is. If the rider feels too far over the front, adding preload to the fork will make it sit up higher but it won’t do anything to stop the fork from bottoming out.

 

2. Adjust Rebound damping
Set this to about the point where if you push down and pull back up quickly, the wheel only lifts up for a moment then touches back down. Keeping the rebound stroke faster will help keep the fork ready to absorb the next impact, if you’re riding halfway into your travel and packing down in corners with your sag set correctly, you need to speed your rebound up by reducing rebound damping.

 

3. Adjust Compression damping
It's best to set this on the trail, start off fully closed and then try it fully open. Go back to whichever feels best and then wind it a couple of clicks at a time from there. If the fork is diving in to corners and riding too far in to its travel, add more compression. If the fork becomes harsh over bumps, wind the compression off.
You may need to slow the rebound down a click or 2 once you have enough compression damping. These work somewhat together.

 

4. Progression/ Ramp Control
Also called bottom out resistance this is your spring rate curve. A coil spring is generally more linear, using air pressure as a spring is somewhat progressive naturally. This can be controlled by a separator with external adjustment, volume chips, or oil level. They all work on the adjustment of available air in the fork. Less air gap = more progression.

 

There you have it. Once you have worked through these steps in a logical manner, your suspension should be dialled!

 

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