Coil Conversion for the Pike

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  • Coil Conversion for the Pike
  • Premier Icon Rick Draper
    Subscriber

    Got my first ride in on my ACS336 the other day. It’s very nice. I went for the for,EE spring and am going to try the next one down with some preload. I do have to say though the 2018 36as a airsprung fork is probably the finest air spring I have used in a fork.

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    EE spring? The Green spring?

    I went with the Green spring, at 181lbs without riding gear. What’s your weight and which spring did you choose Rick?

    I might order the Blue spring as well. So, do you think the 2018 air version is plusher than a Lyrik? How do you rate the 2018 coil against the 2018 air?

    Premier Icon Rick Draper
    Subscriber

    Bloody predictive text. Yes I have a black spring and should have a green spring tomorrow, I tend to hang off the back of my bike a lot which is something I’m working on so my spring weight is a bit strange!

    You definitely notice the ACS cartridge ramp up on it, it’s very nice.

    I’d say the air spring 36 is amazing, better damping control than a RS fork, very plush initial travel but very good midstroke support. It’s a better fork than the 2014-17 36, it’s just got less stiction and a lot nicer initial travel. I’d have left it air sprung but the elevensix out the back meant I had a coil sprung itch to scratch.

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    I’m going to write a proper, semi-legible review soon.

    Well, Fox **** up and decided to move factory right when they decided to announce the race orange fork. So I quickly bought one of the last matte black 2018 RC2s in stock – good luck to anyone trying to source a Fox fork that’s out of stock!

    Anyway, out of the box the fork had about as much stiction as my old mans 2017 Lyriks – of course they hadn’t bedded in.

    So, I then dropped “go faster” 😆 ACS-3 spring kit in to a perfectly decent functioning fork and voided my warranty like any normal sane human being would do – and all I can say is this fork is bloody great. It’s actually smoother than my coiled, FAST pike despite not having bedded in properly yet, so Kashima and that fangled new PTFE infused damper oil obviously works 😈 . The damping is not lightyears ahead, but it’s more refined in comparison to the FAST damper. The FAST damper was better than the stock Pike tune (I had specifically asked for a firm race tune as well), it was firmer and less spikey in the rebound – however balancing High Speed support was a major weakness – with the recommended setting it was too harsh on square edged hits and with the high speed backed out enough to make it more comfortable it just collapsed into it’s travel. The 36 by comparison feels as controlled in it’s deeper stroke but feels more supple around the sag point.

    With this said, when I was running my Pike with an air rear shock – it was a supple well balanced fork – the damping differences between the two forks really are quite subtle. The problem came when I went to a coil DHX2 on the rear and dropped a little bit of sag by speccing a slightly harder spring than recommended (I’m about 25lb oversprung). Previously, I’d balanced the more linear fork by sagging the rear shock more and adding volume spacers – what the DHX2 did was push the bike forward more and cause the Pike to smash through its travel on jumps. So with the ACS-3, the real icing on the cake is the two stage spring, that utilises air to separate the progressiveness from the main spring rate. I now have a coil fork that feels as bottomless as an air fork/shock on big hits – and it’s **** amazing – the bike now feels balanced. I’m getting 20 percent sag (at 180lbs with no riding gear), with the Green spring – this compares to around 21-22 percent with the 160mm Pike. The 170mm Fox 36 ACS-3 is still more comfortable on fast square edged hits than the 160mm Pike despite the decreased sag, yet it handles big hit’s and jumps in a more controlled fashion thanks to the dual rate coil/air spring.

    It’s not worth 1500 quid though – but whatevs…. YOLO. 😀 Fox need to buy out PUSH and offer this kit as a stock option for their forks.

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    I’ll caveat all that though, it’s bloody great because of all the fine details that it irons out in terms of ride quality. It’s not going to give you 10 seconds more in terms of performance on a 3 minutes run, it might however if you’re coming from air give you a smoother ride that is more controlled under braking and if you are coming from a coil fork it will give you that bottomless progression of air forks that induces you to attempt things that you may not otherwise.

    Think of those buttery Marz 888’s of yore and then your progressive Lyriks etc, and then imagine marrying those forks together – in sexy black, orange and gold perfection.

    This is the first kit/fork that has achieved the best of both worlds from both air and coil forks, in one fell swoop creating a fork that I’m not sure is ever going to be bettered. PUSH should be commended for developing something for mountain bikes that is often seen in the motor racing world, that does actually have an impact on ride quality and performance. As opposed to the snake oil and marketing crap that we usually get sold in the mountain bike sphere.

    Shame it has to cost so much to get to what I think should be standard for all forks., the Pike kit will be great when it comes out – for those of you who don’t want to spend Ohlins motorbike fork kind of money.

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    Also don’t bother with PUSHes rebound settings though – the fork **** kicked like a coked up mule, go with Fox’s recommended settings for your weight as a starting point. (Mine at 180lb, was something like 7 from fully closed as a starting point).

    cyclelife
    Member

    Nice write up Tom! Good to get some real world thoughts on a product 😉

    legend
    Member

    So I reckon I’ve probably gone softer than I would usually do on a coil fork. Should only be quite a minor tweak, so was thinking of just getting a pre-load spacer in. Anyone know if there’s a standard spacer that’ll fit? Hopefully got some old RS ones knocking around so planning on trying them at some point

    gwurk
    Member

    Pre-load?

    Really? Just get the right spring.

    or maybe you could convert them to air. use a slightly higher pressure than you did before and don’t use any of those silly tokens that make air forks more progressive. 😉

    Premier Icon Rubber_Buccaneer
    Subscriber

    Preload almost means ride height adjuster in reality. If a coil spring is too soft there is only one way to sort it. Unless you do just want a little more ride height?

    legend
    Member

    Yeah that’s pretty much it, just looking to keep things a little higher. Was trying to copy how I used to have my old 36s, think I made a (minor) arse of it.

    Gary, you’re advice is both unwelcome and shit as always 😉

    gwurk
    Member

    Preload almost means ride height adjuster in reality. If a coil spring is too soft there is only one way to sort it. Unless you do just want a little more ride height?

    No. Requiring preload almost always means you’ve chosen the wrong spring rate.
    The only way to sort that is to change to the correct rate spring.
    Funnily enough. this will sort the ride height out.

    My advice on YOUR suspension has always been a step ahead of your buying impulsiveness Mark.
    It’s gearing I struggle with. 😉

    jamesoz
    Member

    This is all very geeky, Gary, Tom and others, how much would you say your suspension knowledge improves your race results?

    gwurk
    Member

    0% James as I don’t race.
    But running far too soft a fork means it can’t be pushed hard. Hardly ideal if you do.

    Premier Icon Rubber_Buccaneer
    Subscriber

    gwurk – Member

    No. Requiring preload almost always means you’ve chosen the wrong spring rate.
    The only way to sort that is to change to the correct rate spring.
    Funnily enough. this will sort the ride height out

    Yes. That is what I was getting at.

    legend
    Member

    It what if one spring is too soft and the next too hard!!!! Oh teh horror!!1! 😯

    Premier Icon Rubber_Buccaneer
    Subscriber

    No spring is too hard for gwurk

    niksnr
    Member

    Anyone tried the new MRP Ribbon coil yet? Given that its mostly positive feedback on their Ramp Control cartridge, I’m hoping for awesome results on their coil set-up.

    legend
    Member

    Obvious preload answer was obvious- 35mm Boxxer preload spacer

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