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Fox 34 woes

June 20, 2014, 9:58 p.m.
Posts: 30
Joined: Aug. 27, 2007

I recently purchased a Giant Trance SX to replace my aging 2010 Specialized Enduro Evo. The bike feels great (first time on 27.5) but is being massively let down by the suspension.

Coming from a James and Arthur tuned setup on the Enduro (2013 Marzocchi 55 Switch TA/Fox RC4 coil), the stock fork and shock feel like a pile of crap. A Fox 34 Talas CTD Evolution and a Float CTD are what it came with. The rear shock feels harsh at correct sag and blows through the mid stroke. The fork has no damping on Descend mode and bottoms easily, and is notchy in the Trail mode with very little small bump sensitivity, and rides low in it's travel.

I know this bike was a fairly popular seller around here so what have people done to overcome the shortcomings of the suspension?

Some options I have been pondering:

Get rear shock Push'd or worked on by James

Get Avalanche cartridge for fork
Get 2014 Fox CTD damper for fork

Sell fork and buy used Pike
Sell fork and buy new Marzocchi 350

Any other, hopefully cheaper, tuning options that I am overlooking here?

June 20, 2014, 10:19 p.m.
Posts: 481
Joined: May 8, 2010

I recently purchased a Giant Trance SX to replace my aging 2010 Specialized Enduro Evo. The bike feels great (first time on 27.5) but is being massively let down by the suspension.

Coming from a James and Arthur tuned setup on the Enduro (2013 Marzocchi 55 Switch TA/Fox RC4 coil), the stock fork and shock feel like a pile of crap. A Fox 34 Talas CTD Evolution and a Float CTD are what it came with. The rear shock feels harsh at correct sag and blows through the mid stroke. The fork has no damping on Descend mode and bottoms easily, and is notchy in the Trail mode with very little small bump sensitivity, and rides low in it's travel.

I know this bike was a fairly popular seller around here so what have people done to overcome the shortcomings of the suspension?

Some options I have been pondering:

Get rear shock Push'd or worked on by James

Get Avalanche cartridge for fork
Get 2014 Fox CTD damper for fork

Sell fork and buy used Pike
Sell fork and buy new Marzocchi 350

Any other, hopefully cheaper, tuning options that I am overlooking here?

I'll put it this way…. I had the same fork as you last year, and this year I have a Recon RL Gold on a hardtail….. and the Recon kills the 34 in every way. I'm not at James' level at working on forks, but I tried…. Fox has become a bit of a let down.

June 20, 2014, 11:24 p.m.
Posts: 2313
Joined: Sept. 18, 2008

the 2014 ctd damper is much better than the 2013, but if your reference is the buttery marz 55 then you may still not be happy. the pike is rad, i'm sure the new marz stuff is nice too.

the float isn't a great shock, and again you're coming off essentially a mini-dh bike, so apples and oranges. its very tuneable though, might be worth trying that first with james. if a float x will fit i'd highly recommend it, huge upgrade.

June 20, 2014, 11:49 p.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: June 12, 2004

Rear shock has reduced travel internally. Actual stroke of rear shock is 2" even though the exposed stanchion is 2.25

stock shock on trance sx feels pretty dead but at least set the sag with 2" stroke not 2.25" stroke

June 21, 2014, 4:11 a.m.
Posts: 4084
Joined: Jan. 4, 2007

I have a 34 and I am going to get the Push guts for my 34. The Vorsprung kit looks cheap and with the top being open and concave I fear water will pool and possibly end up in the fork. I also plan to get this to clean up the front end.

Maybe even one of these for the back,

is going big on a bike the only way to get you stoked on the sport? what happened to riding with your bros, travelling, and riding unique places, to get people stoked on riding?

fines are useless. there needs to be more punches to the throat.

June 21, 2014, 7:27 a.m.
Posts: 5738
Joined: May 28, 2005

I don't think getting new guys for your fork is an option, unfortunately, since it's an o/b evolution model. Afaik all the upgrade options only work with the higher end/cartridge damper versions, ironically

"Nobody really gives a shit that you don't like the thing that you have no firsthand experience with." Dave

June 21, 2014, 8:07 a.m.
Posts: 30
Joined: Aug. 27, 2007

I don't think getting new guys for your fork is an option, unfortunately, since it's an o/b evolution model. Afaik all the upgrade options only work with the higher end/cartridge damper versions, ironically

This is true for the Push and Vorsprung options unfortunately. A FIT damper is required. Avalanche cartridge or an upgrade to 2014 Fox Fit are the only options I could find.

June 21, 2014, 9:05 a.m.
Posts: 2044
Joined: Jan. 5, 2010

Free option: run the rebound extremely high to compensate for the shitty damper.

No idea if it actually works.

June 21, 2014, 4:19 p.m.
Posts: 843
Joined: Sept. 10, 2012

Sell the fork and get a Pike. Take shock and throw as far into the forest as you can while yelling "F - You Fox!" Buy a new shock. There are a number of decent options depending on how much $$ you want to spend.

Selling my large Cotic BFeMAX [frame only] ---> https://www.pinkbike.com/buysell/3234988/

June 21, 2014, 5:27 p.m.
Posts: 3650
Joined: May 23, 2006

Timely post as I were getting close to pulling trigger on one 'o those SX's.

Wonder if seller(s) would be open to making those changes pre-sale.

For a price, I suppose anything is possible………..=/

Freedom of contract. We sell them guns that kill them; they sell us drugs that kill us.

June 21, 2014, 5:59 p.m.
Posts: 704
Joined: March 15, 2004

on my Reign I found the rear suspension harsh at the correct sag so I used the grease "volume shim" - allows you to run lower pressure for more small bump compliance then it ramps up nicely. Not sure why giant spec'd the high volume shock on a high leverage frame? Maybe a similar option might work on yours? also the high leverage suspension requires exact pressure to tune if you're out either up or down, it suck.

June 21, 2014, 6:05 p.m.
Posts: 30
Joined: Aug. 27, 2007

What are the Marzocchi Roco LO shocks like? I've run a Roco WC air before ona different bike and loved it. I could probably pick one up used for the same price as getting the Fox Push'd.

Not sure how easily I could sell the fork due to the Overdrive 2 system Giant is insistent on using

June 21, 2014, 7:20 p.m.
Posts: 1407
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

Sell the fork and get a Pike. Take shock and throw as far into the forest as you can while yelling "F - You Fox!" Buy a new shock. There are a number of decent options depending on how much $$ you want to spend.

Good luck selling a fork with OD2 specifications….

For a $4000+ dollar bike, I would have expected a better fork? Very strange spec on that bike.

June 21, 2014, 8:19 p.m.
Posts: 3483
Joined: Nov. 27, 2002

on my Reign I found the rear suspension harsh at the correct sag so I used the grease "volume shim" - allows you to run lower pressure for more small bump compliance then it ramps up nicely. Not sure why giant spec'd the high volume shock on a high leverage frame? Maybe a similar option might work on yours? also the high leverage suspension requires exact pressure to tune if you're out either up or down, it suck.

A lot of sense here.

"I do like how you generally bring an open-minded and positive vibe to the threads you participate in"

- Morgman

June 21, 2014, 10:03 p.m.
Posts: 3650
Joined: May 23, 2006

Good luck selling a fork with OD2 specifications….

For a $6000+ dollar bike, I would have expected a better fork? Very strange spec on that bike.

fyp……..

Freedom of contract. We sell them guns that kill them; they sell us drugs that kill us.

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