Suspension service

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by Dirtrider...., May 27, 2020.



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  1. Dirtrider....

    Dirtrider.... Member

    Location:
    RSM
    Name:
    Paul
    Current Bike:
    Ibis Ripmo
    I'm finally waking up and getting around to properly maintaining my equipment. Where do you all take your fork and shock to get them completely overhauled and refreshed? I'm in OC but willing to send them off if needed.

    I have no clue how many hours are on my suspension. How do you all track hours? I bought the current setup October 2018 and have 733.8 miles on the bike.

    I figured i probably should just get them fully serviced, then stay on top of regular maintenance twice a year going forward.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. mtnbikej

    mtnbikej J-Zilla

    Location:
    Orange
    Name:
    J M
    Current Bike:
    SC Chameleon SS, SC Hightower
    Let's do the math. 733 miles. 10 miles per ride(probably low) = 73 rides. 2hrs per ride(probably high) = 146 hrs.

    RS and Fox both recommend servicing the lowers 50-100 hours. I know my Pike feels like crap when I go over that.

    At minimum, drop the lowers and, clean and grease the air spring, clean/replace the foam rings, fresh lower bath oil. Pretty much any shop "should" be able to do this. This is also something the home mechanic can do with a little know how. Both RS and Fox have great tutorials on how to do this. You really don't need any special tools, but you do need fork oil and suspension grease.

    Mileage is on the lower end of the spectrum, so the damper may not necessarily need to be serviced. If the seals/wipers aren't leaking, i'd leave them.

    Some shops are more adept at servicing forks/shocks. Some will do a complete tear down and service, others will only service the lowers and send it out for major service.

    You can send it back to Fox yourself for service. Just fill out the service request form on the website and send it in. Not sure how RS handles this.
     
  3. mtnbikej

    mtnbikej J-Zilla

    Location:
    Orange
    Name:
    J M
    Current Bike:
    SC Chameleon SS, SC Hightower
  4. Dirtrider....

    Dirtrider.... Member

    Location:
    RSM
    Name:
    Paul
    Current Bike:
    Ibis Ripmo
    Boy when you break down the math you really expose the rider... lol I'm a slacker for sure based on those figures. holy heck i need to ride more.

    Makes sense on your comments.

    At what point or what am i looking for to warrant sending it to Fox for a complete overhaul?

    Currently both my fork and shock don't hold air for much more than a week. Fork will drop from 83 lbs down to 67 in about a week... shock was at 198 this morning when i just pumped it to 210 last week. Is that normal for the pressure loss? To me that seems fast.

    Thanks again for your suggestions.
     
    Danmtchl likes this.
  5. DangerDirtyD

    DangerDirtyD iMTB Addict

    Location:
    CA
    Name:
    Chicken Nugget
    Current Bike:
    2018 Guerrilla Gravity SMASH
    What you describe is no good. Send it to Zilla's Garage or to FOX/RockShox. Also, consider www.crazybearbikes.com for your suspension service.
     
  6. SnakeCharmer

    SnakeCharmer iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Crescenta Valley
    Name:
    Mike, aka "Ssnake"
    Current Bike:
    PV3 & FEX
    I’ve got a guy who does good work in the Glendale area. Drop off the fork or shock and pick it up a day or two later.
     
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  7. mtnbikej

    mtnbikej J-Zilla

    Location:
    Orange
    Name:
    J M
    Current Bike:
    SC Chameleon SS, SC Hightower
    Losing that little pressure, sounds like the air backing out into the hose when you attach it to the pump. If you were losing 50% or more of the PSI i'd be a lot more concerned.

    Not holding air.....either an o-ring has failed or you have a scratch somewhere it is not supposed to be.

    I can do the basic service on fork and shock for a nominal fee, but you have to get the service kits. I can supply the fluids. While you wait.

    Doesn't sound like the dampers needs to be touched at this point.
     
  8. Ebruner

    Ebruner Well-Known Member

    Name:
    Erik Bruner
    Current Bike:
    SC Hightower, Kona Hei Hei
    I only trust a handful of people in socal with suspension. The Path and Fluidfocus. There are others I'm certain of it, but those two I have seen tons of products pass their work benches and the key is that they make it right. I'm not going to say that they are perfect, no one is... but they will do the right thing to make the customer happy. I am not a fan of sending products to fox for rebuild. I've seen mixed success out of fox and their prices are far too high.

    @mtnbikej is spot on. You'll have performance degradation after about 6 weeks or 25-30 hours in your fork with just dust wipers and foam rings being dry. I drop the lowers and replace the rings and clean the dust wipers every 6 weeks, and replace the dust wipers on every other 6 week service interval (12 weeks). At that 12 week point, I pull the air spring and clean/re-grease. The whole lower service is very easy and can be done in under 60-100 minutes by almost anyone on their second go-round.

    Damper service is move involved, but these days with cartridge/sealed dampers, needing a full rebuild is once a season or once a season and a half. Some dampers these days seem indestructible and never really need to be torn into, RS charger dampers and Fox FIT dampers are in that category for me.

    TLDR... do air can and lower leg services more often, and do them yourself. Once you discover how easy they are and how much of a performance difference it makes, you'll be more motivated to do them more often. It's alarming to me that your suspension products are dumping air that quickly. Mine will hold air for seemingly months. Air forks in particular are very sensitive to the amount of air volume that's in the lowers. That is an air volume that gets compressed (exactly like your air spring does) and if that is being filled randomly... it's un-metered and uncontrolled air that is changing the performance of the fork.
     
  9. Rumpled

    Rumpled Well-Known Member

    Location:
    OC
    Name:
    Jim Martin
    Current Bike:
    2018 Specialized Epic Carbon C
    I'm no suspension guru, but I think @mtnbikej 's math is a bit high.
    How much does anyone actually ride in a 2 hour ride? YMMV
    I don't even average 10mph on a MTB
    So, I use that. Your 733.8 miles would be ~74 hours. About 1/2 of @mtnbikej estimate, which he does say is high.
    Either way, time for some service.
     
  10. Derkderkall

    Derkderkall Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Monrovia
    Name:
    Derek Allison
    Current Bike:
    2020 Specialized Fuse 29
    I've been told one of the lads at incycle is one of the best suspension guess around as well.
     
  11. da big hills

    da big hills Well-Known Member

    Location:
    pearl harbor
    Name:
    cagey
    Current Bike:
    enduro 29
    I would use 5 mph average speed unless you're named Ed. but you need to realize you climb slower and really are not doing anything to your suspension. You drop at least twice that speed (1/2 the time) and the shorter the drop time the more those shocks are working. Then you got to look at your travel. Do you use full stroke? 3/4? 1/2? It is easy to tell, just look at the dirt line on the down tube or next ride push down your dead weight travel o-ring (sag). Next what diameter is the down tube? bigger dia's are more stable, smaller dia's tend to swim thus putting more radial load on the nested shock surfaces.

    Air pressure: Charles law; the pressure of a gas in a fixed container is directly proportional to temperature. You heated the gas when you compressed it into the shock, later it cooled. Then you reduced the volume by the tare volume used by the pressure gage. You will need more data points to define your leakage rate.

    Science; while I love the science involved in troubleshooting I find bicycles very simple beasts. What impresses me most is that the bicycle is a static system, but add human power and it is magic, we are riding the most efficient mode of travel devised by humans. We take little and gain so much. Those metal boxes cannot compete blowing all that hot air, those aluminium tubes flying above us laugh, but in the grand scheme we will have the last laugh.
     
  12. DangerDirtyD

    DangerDirtyD iMTB Addict

    Location:
    CA
    Name:
    Chicken Nugget
    Current Bike:
    2018 Guerrilla Gravity SMASH
    Matt in San Dimas? Hairy dude?
     
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  13. Derkderkall

    Derkderkall Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Monrovia
    Name:
    Derek Allison
    Current Bike:
    2020 Specialized Fuse 29
    I don't remember

    It was some random conversation with a stranger up on skyline
     
    Dirtrider.... likes this.
  14. SnakeCharmer

    SnakeCharmer iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Crescenta Valley
    Name:
    Mike, aka "Ssnake"
    Current Bike:
    PV3 & FEX
    Yes, his name is Mikie at the Pasadena location. I've had him do a few Fox forks with good results.
     
    Cyclotourist, Dirtrider.... and Oaken like this.
  15. herzalot

    herzalot iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Laguna Beach
    Name:
    Chris
    Current Bike:
    2020 SC Megaplower
    I just buy a new bike when the fork starts feeling a little off...
     
    Luis, Cyclotourist, Grego and 5 others like this.
  16. Dirtrider....

    Dirtrider.... Member

    Location:
    RSM
    Name:
    Paul
    Current Bike:
    Ibis Ripmo
    I resembled that comment before the Ripmo. This is the longest i've owned a mountain bike.

    Appreciate all the suggestions and comments... definitely a lot to consider. Most importantly, i need to get into a routine of servicing my sh!t...

    Lots to learn on my journey.
     
    Cyclotourist, MolarM and herzalot like this.
  17. mtnbikej

    mtnbikej J-Zilla

    Location:
    Orange
    Name:
    J M
    Current Bike:
    SC Chameleon SS, SC Hightower

    I know a guy who can teach you how to do these servicings. :sneaky:
     
  18. Oaken

    Oaken Well-Known Member

    Location:
    OC
    Name:
    CeeJay
    I’ve got an old Zoke 55 fork that could use a rebuild. Any OC based recommendations for that uncommon suspension?
    I would prefer to not just have it shipped to Fox, and have it done in-house instead.
    I know the Garageworks was a Zoke guy, but I have seen spotty reviews about him.
    Still the Path? Tustin or Oaks? Tustin has always been my shop, but last time (a long while ago) I wasn’t too happy with the results.
     
    Cyclotourist likes this.
  19. HBkites

    HBkites Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Huntington Beach
    Name:
    Sharone
    Current Bike:
    Why S7, Revel Rascal, Spark RC
    The slower you ride the longer it takes to get to 733.8 miles.
    A "fast" rider might need 50 hours, a "slow" riders might require 100 hour.
    Strava does a great job tracking the miles per bike (if you take the time to setup all your bikes). I wish they will add hour meter for MTB.
     
    Luis, Cyclotourist, Rumpled and 2 others like this.
  20. mtnbikej

    mtnbikej J-Zilla

    Location:
    Orange
    Name:
    J M
    Current Bike:
    SC Chameleon SS, SC Hightower

    Problem you are gonna run into with Marzocchi, especially older models is lack of parts availability. Seals and wipers, probably not a big issue....dampers/parts...good luck.
     
    Cyclotourist and Oaken like this.
  21. fos'l

    fos'l Member

    Name:
    Bob
    Current Bike:
    2005 Santa Cruz Superlight
    My (atypical) experience with a Superlight Fox rear shock. Blew it and had it rebuilt twice by Fox under warranty in the first year (thank you Switchback Cyclery). Then rode it for 10+ years at least twice a week. Had it rebuilt by the Path a couple of years ago and it works fine (for me) still riding it twice a week.
     
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  22. herzalot

    herzalot iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Laguna Beach
    Name:
    Chris
    Current Bike:
    2020 SC Megaplower
    Marz replaced my 55 with a 350 right before they disappeared. Eventually I had to send the Marz 350 to Fox for repair. They said, "It will cost you about $500 for us to repair your 350. Tell you what, we will sell you a top of the line 2018 Fox 36 Factory Fit4 for the same price." What could I do? I kinda miss the 350.
     
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  23. Oaken

    Oaken Well-Known Member

    Location:
    OC
    Name:
    CeeJay
    It’s stuff like this that makes me avoid Fox products.
     
    Cyclotourist likes this.
  24. herzalot

    herzalot iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Laguna Beach
    Name:
    Chris
    Current Bike:
    2020 SC Megaplower
    I dunno, offering me a current model $1000.00 fork for $550 to replace a 4 year old fork from a company that went under wasn't such a bad deal.
     
    Jmsracer, Cyclotourist and mtnbikej like this.
  25. Luis

    Luis iMTB Addict

    Location:
    Sylmar
    Name:
    Luis
    Current Bike:
    Big Black 29er
    Too much math involved in this thread :gag::laugh:
     
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