Any suspension setup tips? My bike feels dead

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  • Any suspension setup tips? My bike feels dead
  • I’ve had a few pairs of older marzocchis, and when used with air preload, they do feel as you describe. Which is fine for dirt jump forks, but not ideal for trail forks.

    I also had a 5th element shock on an old bike (I think the swinger shock technology is similar to this) and that felt quite dead. Infact, I think 5ths were well known to feel “dead”

    Sorry I cant help!

    mindmap3
    Member

    When was the last time they were serviced? My old 66’s and 04 Z1 Freerides both have air preload and are really smooth…if anything the 66’s were too smooth. If the oil is chegged up it could lead to them feeling sticky. They’re easy to service yourself.

    The Swinger shocks to feel a but dead…I hated the SPV swinger on my Demo 9. It often felt a bit reluctant to start working. Although itmf it’s overdue a service it could start feeling poise seals and oil degrade.

    My 36’s were starting to feel ropey being well overdue a service but came back from J Tech and feel loads better now.

    rob jackson
    Member

    rebound too slow?

    _tom_
    Member

    Went for a ride at Aston Hill the other day and realised that my suspension feels awful. Compared to my mates bike with some older 888s and a new RS Kage it just feels dead – my mates bike feels so smooth and controlled in comparison. I never really noticed it before as I was riding the smoother tracks at Woburn all the time.

    I’m on a Scott Voltage FR30 with a 2010 55 RC3 and a Manitou Swinger 4 way shock. Am I fighting a losing battle with these components or do they just need a proper setup? The fork feels like it has a lot of stiction, I think it’s down to the air preload and it feels quite “notchy” when this is used, but I’m a bit too heavy for the stock spring without it.. Felt like I was getting rattled to bits over the faster rootier bits of trail! I don’t really know how the compression works on this fork as it adjusts both hi/low.

    As for the shock, it doesn’t have much in the way of adjustments other than air volume, air and coil weight/preload.

    The sag on both fork and shock is set about right but they just feel dead and nothing close to the smooth plushness of my mates bike (or even the new sektor on my hardtail)!

    Any setup tips would be appreciated 🙂

    mildred
    Member

    The fork feels like it has a lot of stiction, I think it’s down to the air preload and it feels quite “notchy” when this is used, but I’m a bit too heavy for the stock spring without it.. Felt like I was getting rattled to bits over the faster rootier bits of trail! I don’t really know how the compression works on this fork as it adjusts both hi/low.

    As David says above, this is a common feel with Marzocchis with air pre-load. That said, with some very careful tweaking it is possible to get a good feel. That is, enough support to stop feeling divey, but not so mush as to ruin the the ‘action’ of the fork. Do remember that you should be adding VERY little air into these; I put about 7psi into my 2010 66rc3 ti and this was enough to feel a difference.

    On the topic of your weight; I’m 15 stone and I find the Rc3ti stock springs to be too soft in general trail/commute type riding, but found that when I gave it the beans the damping seemed to magically sort it all out and it actually felt fine. I’ve owned the 44’s and 66’s but not the 55 version, but given the others felt very similar in terms of damping performance and reaction to tweaking the settings, I’ve no reason to believe the 55’s would be any different.

    I actually settled on no air-preload and found them sublime once worn in a bit.

    Have a play with very low pressures (you may need a marzocchi low pressure pump) and try added just a couple of lb at a time.

    PJM1974
    Member

    Maybe swap the fork oil for a slightly heavier weight and reduce the preload? You’ll retain the support but the suspension will be more active. It’s got to be finely balanced though otherwise you end up with spiky compression damping.

    LapSteel
    Member

    I would try taking all the air out and seeing how they feel…..then adding small amounts back in. Worked for my Z1 freerides….I am 14 1/2 stone and they still performed OK with no air at all!

    Try backing off the rebound damping. Faster rebiound brings a more playful feel.

    xiphon
    Member

    1. Remove the air, give them an oil change, and reset all the “adjustments” to zero.

    2. Go and find a trail to ride back-to-back. Aston hill is perfect.

    3. Adjust the forks one thing at a time, then go and ride.

    Rinse and Repeat until you understand (by noticing the difference) what’s happening, and what feels best.

    _tom_
    Member

    Cheers guys I’ll have to have another play around with it. The fork does feel really nice without any air in it but at 12 stone I sag it a bit too much. As for the rebound I think thats ok. Not sure when it was last serviced either, bought it 2nd hand a while ago. Now I have a spare bike I may be tempted to finally give fork servicing a go. What kinda oil weight should I try, and where do I buy said oil?

    Reckon I might just end up replacing the shock then, my mates new Kage set up by TF tuned feels awesome. Thats is, if the voltage suspension design is right for this kind of thing – I know its more of a freeride jumps type bike so maybe it’ll always feel a bit dead rather than plush and “endless travel” feeling?

    mindmap3
    Member

    Marzocchi’s are a piece of cake to service really. There should be loads of guides on the web.

    I use 7.5 weight oil from my local motocross store because it’s better value than the MTB stuff. Some use a slightly heavier weight, but you’re not that heavy so I’d still with 7.5w.

    I’m surprised that you need to use much preload really. I’m 13.5st and barely need any in my Z1’s.

    mildred
    Member

    Cheers guys I’ll have to have another play around with it. The fork does feel really nice without any air in it but at 12 stone I sag it a bit too much.

    If it feels nice without any air, I’d say ignore the sag – this is only meant as a guide to help you with setup; go with the feel of the fork. This is a characteristic of all the Marzocchis I’ve ever had – they all feel too soft when setting them up. I think this is what people mean when they talk about the plushness and buttery feel of Marzocchis. Certainly in my experience they feel very different on the trail compared to a static setting such as sag, or the basic ‘car park’ test.

    Before messing with oil types etc. I’d ride them for a while without air and see how they feel after a few rides. Then, as mentioned above, go to a track and add tiny bits of air and ride them, repeating the process until you get a good compromise.

    _tom_
    Member

    Yep I reckon I’m gonna try that, cheers. Compression set in the middle and no air and see what happens 🙂

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