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Well I finally got back in town and had a chance to look at this issue closer and am posting what I found here in case anyone ends up back here at some point. First thing I did was check the oil in my lowers and make sure I hadn't had a dyslexic moment and mixed up the two when I last changed it. Fortunately that looked good.
While I was at it, I played around with the fork with no pressure in it and the valve stem removed. For anyone who is having trouble setting up the LSC / HSC, this is a great tool to learning how they work and interact. This also helped me verify that what the new Fox instructions are saying about the HSC adjustment appears to be correct even with my extra 'clicks' (thanks for that @A_Marriott).
The next thought I had while I was away was that maybe my problem was not actually damper related but instead was on the air spring side. This was especially the case because I had already installed a Vorsprung Luftkappe in hopes that it would make things better and found that it made no positive difference and possibly made my issue with arm pump / 'harshness' worse. Since this air spring already naturally has a lot of mid stroke support and the Luftkappe just amplifies that I was wondering if I should actually be reducing my initial pressure / increasing my sag because I was actually getting too much mid stroke support (too high a spring rate in the travel beyond sag). As a result I reduced the pressure from just under 100 psi to around 86 psi and increased my sag from around 18% to around 25%. I also re-installed 1/2 token (I had removed the one stock token when I first installed the Luftkappe as it has a similar effect on the positive air chamber). Finally I set the LSC at the recommended setting from the Fox manual and the HSC setting one additional click out (faster) from the recommended setting.
My first ride with this set up was a lot better than before and more along the lines of all the rave reviews I have been reading. I did bottom the fork out for the first time ever on this ride (although I could not pinpoint when) so I went back to the stock 1 full token + the Luftkappe which seemed just about right on my second ride.
So it seems, at least for me, that I need to run significantly more sag on this fork to get the feel I like. I've always run my Rockshox forks (a DPA Pike and DPA Lyrik) at around or just under 20% so this is a bit of a change for me. I actually think I might change out the 160mm air spring in this fork for a 170mm one and run that at even more sag (maybe around 27-28%) to get a very similar ride height, although I may pay for that with more peddle bob while standing and climbing.
The one thing that still seems off to me are Fox's recommended rebound settings. I'm currently running LSR 12 clicks out from closed/slow (2-3 is Fox's recommended setting for my weight and pressure) while my HSR is 3 clicks out from closed/slow (2 is Fox's recommended setting for my weight and pressure).
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