Finding your ideal suspension setup is key to maximizing your control and comfort on the trail, and spring rate is arguably the most important piece of the equation. It requires a compromise between running your suspension stiff enough to be efficient and supple enough to provide a smooth ride. In this video, FOX Racing Shox’s Outside Technician, Louis Angeley, walks you through the process of finding your ideal spring rate.
Your FOX FLOAT or TALAS series suspension products make use of an air spring, which is highly adjustable with the use of a high pressure shock pump. To measure your sag, sit on your bike bike in a neutral riding position. With the travel indicating O-rings, determine how much stroke is being used to suspend your weight. Using 25% of the available travel is appropriate for most riders, but aggressive riders often prefer a stiffer suspension setup. The rule of thumb is that you should be using full travel, or bottoming out, at least once or twice on an average ride. If you aren’t using full travel, your bike isn’t absorbing impacts as efficiently as it can. If you’re experiencing fork dive under hard braking, or finding that the fork is bottoming out too often, adding pressure will help. Just keep in mind that stiffening the suspension will reduce the suppleness of the ride. If you want to continue fine-tuning your setup, its best to make adjustments in 5-10 PSI increments.
Photo Credit: Re Wikstrom