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How much of your suspension do you use?

Oct. 9, 2021, 12:17 a.m.
Posts: 1682
Joined: July 11, 2014

I'd never bothered measuring in the past, I just eyeballed the travel indicator ring and figured I had like 5-10mm left. Measured after a decent 2 hour ride with drops, jumps, rock rolls with moderate g-outs, fork is about 140mm/160mm and shock is 51mm/60mm (around 136mm ignoring leverage curve changes) so that's about 88% on the fork and 85% on shock. Bike feels great, just surprised it's not using more travel.

Fox 38 with 4 spacers, about 20% sag (108 psi @ 220lbs) LSC 11 HSC 6 LSR 5 HSR 4 from closed. Shock is 2021 Float X2, I believe 1 spacer (haven't opened, trunion 205x60 = max 2 spacers), 275psi 30% sag, LSC 6 HSC 4 LSR 5 HSR 4. Reading this now I'm within Fox's recommendations with 1-2 faster on rebound. I think I am going to back compression off on the shock

Oct. 9, 2021, 1:02 a.m.
Posts: 176
Joined: July 24, 2009

Near 25% SAG in front, 30% in the rear. On a tame ride, I'll use maybe 145 of my 175mm, when I go harder maybe 155 or 160mm. The rest is reserved for really stupid moments. THe fork ist almost impossible to bottom out, even with almost no air in it (damper tuning). Feels good. In the rear, I use a little more travel, I think. Probably a question of preference and/or riding style. On of my buddies has his fork set up so it will bottom out at least once every ride. Prefers it that way and is much faster than me.

Oct. 9, 2021, 3:25 a.m.
Posts: 143
Joined: May 1, 2018

What’s the frame and fork?

I tend to get near full on my fork on gnarlier rides - say 155 of 160mm, but with a coil in the back I’ve not been able to track it.

Oct. 9, 2021, 9 a.m.
Posts: 1012
Joined: June 26, 2012

As an experiment, I would try pulling out volume spacers. See how it feels, and whether you like it. In my experience, too many tokens can make suspension feel harsh on rough trails with medium-sized hits.


 Last edited by: D_C_ on Oct. 9, 2021, 9:01 a.m., edited 1 time in total.
Oct. 9, 2021, 12:21 p.m.
Posts: 673
Joined: Sept. 10, 2012

I just care that my suspension feels great. If I use all my travel every/most rides is not important.

Oct. 9, 2021, 12:22 p.m.
Posts: 14564
Joined: Dec. 16, 2003

I tend to use full travel on most rides, unfortunately it's usually from poor line choice, casing everything in sight and a general lack of skill.

Oct. 9, 2021, 12:26 p.m.
Posts: 1729
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: DaveM

I tend to use full travel on most rides, unfortunately it's usually from poor line choice, casing everything in sight and a general lack of skill.

Oh c'mon, it's not that bad. I've seen you ride. You can hold a pretty straight line on the sidewalk.

Oct. 9, 2021, 5:55 p.m.
Posts: 146
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

I think of travel as having a correlation with how the ride goes. On a cruisey ride I might use 70-80% of the available travel. When I'm really pushing myself out of my comfort zone, or when something goes really sideways is the only time I bottom out.

I'd rather have the reserve than an always plush ride, but that's a preference.

Oct. 10, 2021, 2:35 p.m.
Posts: 1682
Joined: July 11, 2014

Posted by: Heinous

What’s the frame and fork?

I tend to get near full on my fork on gnarlier rides - say 155 of 160mm, but with a coil in the back I’ve not been able to track it.

Frame is 2022 Transition Patrol (mullet, 160mm) with 2021 Float X2 Factory, fork is 2021 Fox 38 Factory 160mm.

It does sound like it's a preference thing but that I am not that far off. I definitely do not like the feeling of the front end diving or riding low as I feel pitched forward, and with all things suspension it's a trade-off of factors so getting ultimate plushness with mid-stroke support/ride height is a never ending game. As I said overall I'm happy, my hands have only felt beat up on a few really long descents which are unfortunately not common for me these days.

DC: I'm gonna go from 4 to 2 spacers for a ride, then zero, while keeping same/similar air pressure and see how the fork rides. Will update as I tinker.

Oct. 10, 2021, 10:18 p.m.
Posts: 1012
Joined: June 26, 2012

Cool! Let us know how it goes.

Oct. 11, 2021, 1:32 a.m.
Posts: 2278
Joined: April 2, 2005

was at the local bikepark at my mum‘s yesterday, did 28 laps and used full travel in the rear on the trance x and about 140 of the 150mm travel on the front


 Last edited by: Sethimus on Oct. 11, 2021, 1:33 a.m., edited 1 time in total.
Oct. 12, 2021, 9:08 a.m.
Posts: 43
Joined: March 14, 2017

I set my suspension up so it feels "right". 

Normal rides I'll have 15% left in the tank, smashier rides I might bottom out/nearly bottom but if I have bottomed it out hard it generally means I have gotten something wrong!

Oct. 12, 2021, 9:10 a.m.
Posts: 43
Joined: March 14, 2017

Posted by: grambo

Posted by: Heinous

What’s the frame and fork?

I tend to get near full on my fork on gnarlier rides - say 155 of 160mm, but with a coil in the back I’ve not been able to track it.

Frame is 2022 Transition Patrol (mullet, 160mm) with 2021 Float X2 Factory, fork is 2021 Fox 38 Factory 160mm.

It does sound like it's a preference thing but that I am not that far off. I definitely do not like the feeling of the front end diving or riding low as I feel pitched forward, and with all things suspension it's a trade-off of factors so getting ultimate plushness with mid-stroke support/ride height is a never ending game. As I said overall I'm happy, my hands have only felt beat up on a few really long descents which are unfortunately not common for me these days.

DC: I'm gonna go from 4 to 2 spacers for a ride, then zero, while keeping same/similar air pressure and see how the fork rides. Will update as I tinker.

Maybe go from 4 to 0 then try 2.   Depending how you get on, then try 3 or 1...

Oct. 13, 2021, 8:01 a.m.
Posts: 182
Joined: Feb. 16, 2013

Posted by: DanLees1978

I set my suspension up so it feels "right".

Normal rides I'll have 15% left in the tank, smashier rides I might bottom out/nearly bottom but if I have bottomed it out hard it generally means I have gotten something wrong!

This sounds spot-on. You need some emergency travel, for when things go a bit wrong, but you also need to make sure you can actually access that end travel in those scenarios. Then, of course, you need the main 85% to feel right, so you're balancing those three things to get the perfect setup. A great example was this past weekend. I rode Iron Mountain in Merritt with a big crew on DH bikes. Rear brake problems resulted in me swapping to my 160/150 trail bike half way through the day, and there was a move that ended up clapping both ends loudly (very rare for me and my setup). If I didn't have that last 15% saved up front, I think would have had a really bad time trying to steer out of it at the bottom.

I tend to use a bit more % in the back than the front on mellower rides, but there is usually some left on both.


 Last edited by: mammal on Oct. 13, 2021, 8:03 a.m., edited 1 time in total.
Oct. 13, 2021, 8:54 a.m.
Posts: 397
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

Posted by: DanLees1978

I set my suspension up so it feels "right". 

Normal rides I'll have 15% left in the tank, smashier rides I might bottom out/nearly bottom but if I have bottomed it out hard it generally means I have gotten something wrong!

Pretty much. If one sets the sag correctly and you only get 50% of your available travel ever, you’re over forked. Conversely if you bottom out all the time, you may need more suspension or air volume spacers. If a person runs no  or minimal sag and bottoms out regularly something is wrong.  I find that I bottom out on certain drops with sudden transitions or the odd drop to flat jump I might do but I’m no jumper.

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