How to Adjust Your Dampening

First, buy the video from Fineline Suspension   -- it's only $30, and both shows and tells you how to tune for both comfort and control.

Next, adjust the Rider Sag and check bike sag to ensure you’ve got the correct Spring

Then check the pressure in both tires, and bleed the air pressure in both forks.

Finally, load your bike, ride out to your favorite spot, and do it, but note these tips...

Shock Rebound

Ride through rocks, roots or bumps leading into and out of a corner. If the rear wheel hops when braking for the corner or accelerating out of it, soften RD a few clicks and try again.

Ride over a log, ledge or rock. If the rear kicks up badly, stiffen RD a few clicks.

Ride through some deep whoops on hard ground. If your bike doesn’t track straight and the rear wheel doesn’t extend to the bottom of each whoop before the next one, or swaps badly, soften RD and try again. If that doesn’t help, stiffen CD a few clicks, and try again.

Shock Compression

Ride a trail with small rocks, roots and bumps. If the rear end feels harsh and bouncy, soften the CD. If it wallows, you’re riding the spring -- add CD.

Ride off your biggest jump. If your shock bottoms badly, add two clicks of CD. If it still bottoms badly, and your bike is not equipped with a Hi-Speed adjuster, try a stiffer spring.

Fork Rebound

Ride a short, sweeping turn. If your bike resists the turn, understeers, drifts to the outside, or the tire loses steering traction and washes out, add RD. If it oversteers, turns too quickly to the inside, or the tire bites too hard and knifes into the ground, decrease RD.

Fork Compression

Ride a trail with small rocks, roots and bumps. If the handlebars feel harsh, soften the CD. If not, add CD until they do feel harsh, then back off a click or two.

In the life of every problem, there’s a time when it’s big enough to see but small enough to solve.   Here’s a few solutions to some of the problems every rider will, sooner or later, run into...

Jarring => harsh ride in the handlebars on relatively small but sharp bumps

  • Decrease CD & RD so wheel comes up and goes down faster
  • Try a fork spring with a lower spring rate for a softer ride

    Packing => harsh ride in handlebars on larger bumps

  • Increase CD in the forks to limit the compression
  • Decrease RD to help the wheel return more quickly
  • Try stiffer fork springs

    Headshake => front wheel ocsillates side to side, especially in soft stuff

  • Move forks lower in triple clamps to increase rake and straight-line stability
  • Decrease RD in forks so wheel rolls over rather than ploughs into ground
  • Try stiffer front springs and softer rear spring to move center of gravity rearward

    Oversteers => bike turns too quickly, goes inside the turn, front wheel knifes

  • Move forks lower in the triple clamps to increase rake, slow down turning
  • Decrease RD on both forks to slow down the turning
  • Install stiffer fork spring so wheel won’t sink in and bite too much

    Understeers => bike turns too slowly, drifts wide -- front wheel pushes, washes out

  • Move forks higher in triple clamps to decrease rake and speed up turning
  • Increase RD on both forks to increase “cone effect” and speed up turning
  • Bleed air pressure in both forks to stop the front wheel from pushing
  • Try softer fork springs so wheel bites rather than pushes the ground

    Kickup => rear wheel hops straight up, seat pops you in the butt

  • Increase RD to slow down wheel’s return after hitting a bump

    Swapping => rear wheel hops side to side in hard to loamy whoops

  • Increase CD and/or decrease RD to eliminate packing

    Braking Hop => rear wheel hops excessively when braking for bumps or a corner

  • Decrease shock’s RD to help wheel follow the bumps more quickly

    Acceleration Hop => rear wheel hops badly on rough ground during acceleration

  • Decrease RD to help wheel follow the bumps more quickly
  • If that doesn’t lessen the kickup, decrease the shock’s CD

    Acceleration Spin => the rear wheel loses traction under heavy acceleration

  • Increase RD to improve rear wheel "squat"