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Zeb is harsh...

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
17,217
15,427
Canaderp
Hard to describe, but on chattery stuff the fork feels like it's vibrating or just not operating smoothly or something.

I changed the air shaft on it from 170 down to 160mm.

I have about 85-90ish psi in it. Yes I'm fat. Running high speed compression open and 2 or 3 clicks of low speed.

I left the single air token in it, which it had from the factory.

Any thoughts? Did I perhaps put too much grease on the air shaft?

Also to note, when I changed the shaft, I wasn't able to do step 5 in the image below. When pulling the shaft out, it felt like it was pushing against a cushion of air. Just couldn't pull it out. Did I do something wrong?


Thoughts?
 

Jm_

sled dog's bollocks
Jan 14, 2002
16,683
7,609
AK
Yeah, has some deep stroke harshness and a lot of off the top harshness. secus definitely helped with the first and it’s livable now. Planning on modding the midvalve and a few shimz. Stock the spring is pretty F-ed up. With the secus and normal size bars I can charge though some pretty chunky stuff.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
17,217
15,427
Canaderp
I just find it odd that it didn't feel like this before I changed the air shaft. It felt great before, no complaints.

I also forgot to mention that I don't think I've seen the oring hit the max travel mark on the stantion...
 

Jm_

sled dog's bollocks
Jan 14, 2002
16,683
7,609
AK
I just find it odd that it didn't feel like this before I changed the air shaft. It felt great before, no complaints.

I also forgot to mention that I don't think I've seen the oring hit the max travel mark on the stantion...
Yeah, ran a bout 52psi this morning, seemed to work good, got within 1/2" with a pretty hard over-shoot past a large table-top, but it's easy to run too much IME and it doesn't give you a lot less sag with too much. Definitely need less than the Lyrik did.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
17,217
15,427
Canaderp
Did you change the air pressure much between setups?
I think I added a tiny bit? Can't remember what it was before, but after changing it to 160mm I did get the sag to sit around 30%. I should probably do it again..
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
17,217
15,427
Canaderp
So I took the air spring apart this morning and re-did it. The fork feels much better; much much less vibrations and it seems like there is more grip in corners when leaned over.

Reading some random posts on the interwebs, the air shaft has a hole in it, which adds a little volume to the chamber. The air piston also has a hole - it's disputed whether the holes should line up, but they weren't, so I tightened it down a smidgen. Should note that the holes on the old air shaft were also not aligned, so the jury is out on that one.

I also removed the air token. And for sure bottomed the fork twice.

I also read about some folks improving feel of the fork by compressing the lowers as you do up the footnuts. Did that.

AND after installing the c-clip under the air shaft spacer, I made sure that the piston was at the very bottom and pulled out all the way before proceeding.

Not sure which thing actually helped, but it feels better.

Also double checked that the air balancing dimple wasn't coated in grease, which it wasn't.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
17,217
15,427
Canaderp
That said, I did bottom it out. And dialed in 3 clicks of high speed compression.

Could maybe add a couple psi and trying backing off the HSC click? Or leave it?
 

Jm_

sled dog's bollocks
Jan 14, 2002
16,683
7,609
AK
That said, I did bottom it out. And dialed in 3 clicks of high speed compression.

Could maybe add a couple psi and trying backing off the HSC click? Or leave it?
Does it ride smooth in chunk/chatter with 3 clicks of HSC?
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
50,180
15,633
Sleazattle
That said, I did bottom it out. And dialed in 3 clicks of high speed compression.

Could maybe add a couple psi and trying backing off the HSC click? Or leave it?

Not familiar with how the air spring on the Zeb runs but I've found that with a few forks the solution to harshness was to increase air pressure so it actually rides higher, also makes it more supportive and poppier. Wallowey bikes are not fun bikes.
 

Jm_

sled dog's bollocks
Jan 14, 2002
16,683
7,609
AK
Not familiar with how the air spring on the Zeb runs but I've found that with a few forks the solution to harshness was to increase air pressure so it actually rides higher, also makes it more supportive and poppier. Wallowey bikes are not fun bikes.
Yeah, Dougal pointed out on mtbr that the Zeb is harsh off the top and wallow-ey in the middle. I didn't feel the middle wallow much, but I had it pumped up higher too, but that made it even harsher off the top, so it wasn't exactly helping things. IMO, stock Zeb spring is pretty F-ed up. It's absolutely true that sometimes too low of a spring rate will be harsher, but I only tend to find myself doing this out of desperation because something else is F-ed up and preventing me from running that higher spring rate...usually the fact that it's way too harsh at that higher spring rate.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
17,217
15,427
Canaderp
Does it ride smooth in chunk/chatter with 3 clicks of HSC?
It felt pretty smooth, way better than yesterday. I rode the same trails as yesterday, which are short lift access """dh"""" trails and kept everything else the exact same.

Today it felt more like how it was riding when it had the 170mm shaft in it, which I think is pretty good. I had much more trust in the grip it was helping to maintain.
Not familiar with how the air spring on the Zeb runs but I've found that with a few forks the solution to harshness was to increase air pressure so it actually rides higher, also makes it more supportive and poppier. Wallowey bikes are not fun bikes.
It doesn't feel wallowy, which is good. I might try another few psi and see what happens. I also have some LSC dialed in, but I forget how much.
 

Jm_

sled dog's bollocks
Jan 14, 2002
16,683
7,609
AK
If you can use HSC and maintain compliance and not turn it into a jackhammer, then more power to you. That isn't always the case, but if a heavier rider, that could make sense.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
17,217
15,427
Canaderp
If you can use HSC and maintain compliance and not turn it into a jackhammer, then more power to you. That isn't always the case, but if a heavier rider, that could make sense.
I'm definitely on the heavier side. Sunday vs Saturday felt lightyears better so I'll chalk it up as a win.

Will do some trail riding on Wednesday and will try to see if a little more fine tuning helps. And see how it feels on general trails, rather than pointing downhill 100% of the time.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,527
1,578
chez moi
If you're not ready for Full Secus, I really like the way the Luftkappe feels in mine. Easy, cheapish upgrade...
 

Racebike

Monkey
Jul 28, 2008
463
4
Sweden
We have found (in the shop) that many ZEBs have tight bushings.
3/5 ZEB forks that come through need a bushing burnish.

If you get them done and add a Luftkappe or a Secus to them, that makes a huge jump in performance.