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[Video] How to CORRECTLY setup rebound damping

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1/25/2016 3:12 PM

Hello guys! Just want to share a new episode. Probably the most important one.

I found that many riders out there have a completely "wrong" rebound setting on the rear shocks. In this video I will explain how to correctly tune your rebound damping for achieve a great stability & traction balance. To the best of my knowledge this is the most reproducible and easier method to tune the rebound of a shock. It is also a great starting point for fine-tuning.

Bye from Portugal smile

1/25/2016 5:18 PM

Thanks Andrexter. That was well useful. I've always used to use just a basic off the bike push and release method and tuned the rebound so that when I release quickly the tire only just stays on the ground instead of bouncing up. Perhaps that technique is useful to you for fork damping. We need more helpful people like you around.


1/25/2016 6:22 PM

That is awesome info for everyone. Spasiba


1/25/2016 6:58 PM

It would be interesting to see if something like ShockWiz comes up with similar settings.

I'm thinking that the speed you ride off the curb at might impact how many clicks works or doesn't work. In the Art's vid they go a lot faster and smoother so that must make a difference?!?!,25453/sspomer,2

@vitalMTB did the 2016 test sessions include testing the ShockWiz? Would be curious to hear how ShockWiz recommendations stack up with multiple riders, multiple bikes, multiple laps...


1/26/2016 11:54 AM
Edited Date/Time: 1/26/2016 11:57 AM

Hi! Thanks for the feedback!

I honestly don't recommend the "hand feeling" method to adjust rebound. That's not a reproducible and standarized method. What happens is that each one has different "feelings", so when everybody uses that method what happens is that most of them will end up with an overdamped or very underdamped setting. With the curb test you don't need to master the science behind the "empirical suspension feeling tuneability". Keep it mind that curb-test is a starting point, you might need to increase 1 click or even 2 clicks (towards fast rebound), depending on the bumpiness of your trails.

I recommend to do the curb test while seated on the bike. Because when you are quiet and seated, you get better results (the shock compresses more due to higher weight transfer during curb drop, and you eliminate other variables such as the influence of body movement and the dampening from your legs...yes your legs act also as a suspension!). So, quiet and seated without braking = less variables to mess around = only suspension is working.

Jakers, I recommend doing the test at a slow speed, because at a slow speed the vertical impact is higher, and you compress more the shock (in my vid, I used around 75% of travel on a freeride bike in a little tiny curb! which is impressive given that I have a SAG of 30%). So that tiny curb at slow speeds simulates well a medium-size drop on the trail. By compressing more the shock it's easier for you to check for oscillations. The critical damping adjustment does not depend on how much the shock compresses (size of the curb or speed of the curb test). It only depends on the spring rate and on the sprung mass (rider weight and sprung weigh of the bike). This is why different rider weights and spring rates have different rebound settings (number of clicks) to achieve critical damping.

Bye smile


1/30/2016 10:11 AM

The vertical impact is the same (the vertical speed component gets the same acceleration in any case, regardles of horizontal velocity), the difference with a faster speed is that you could get into a situation where both wheels hit the ground much quicker in succession, therefore the front suspension will have an effect on the rear as well (weight transfer and all).

I'd also like to see what tools like ShockWiz say, this would be a VERY usefull 'tool' to setup rebound for beginners (and not necessarily only for beginners!).


1/30/2016 3:36 PM

Primoz, of course, you are rigth! My bad. As you said, vertical accelaration (g 9.8) is always the same independently of horizontal velocity. However, and as you also said the curb test at slow speed isolate mostly the rear suspension and you dont get distracted with other factors such as load transfers. Thank you for your clear explanation smile I wasn't aware of that shockwiz thing, it seems intetesting. I have a "free" alternative method for shock data aquisition that I will show you in my next video episodes. Bye smile


1/30/2016 5:22 PM

Ooh, can't wait for that. Will you post the update here as well, so i'll get an e-mail notification about it?


1/31/2016 4:27 AM

OK smile


1/31/2016 9:56 AM

Thanks Adrextr smile

I like the sounds of another alternative for data acquisition and free sounds like a great price. I check with my bank and they said I can afford that. grin


2/1/2016 4:15 AM

Just a sneak peek preview from data obtained with this method with a Fox 36 riding over a rocky section. It was my first acquisition.


I will try to make the video at the end of the week. Stay tunned! smile


2/1/2016 5:00 AM

Thanks dude! that cleared up some of the fog surrounding rebound set up, time to experiment.


2/2/2016 11:50 AM

Hi guys! For those who saw the video, just wanted to share some REAL DATA from my shock with different rebound settings in the curb test... You can see the oscillations now smile The green line was in slowest rebound setting. So slow that the shock stayed "packed down" after the curb impact... It did not recover to the equilibrium position (SAG).

In the next days I will upload a video to show you a FREE method to do these suspension real data acquisition. This is really awesome! :D


Stay tuned! smile


2/5/2016 2:17 PM

Primoz wrote:

Ooh, can't wait for that. Will you post the update here as well, so i'll get an e-mail notification about it?

Check the "[DIY] FREE Suspension Data Acquisition (Video)" thread in main forum "The Hub", already posted there.


2/8/2016 11:28 AM

Jakers wrote:

It would be interesting to see if something like ShockWiz comes up with similar settings.

I'm thinking that the speed you ...more

Hey Jakers,

No, we didn't use ShockWiz during Test Sessions. It's something we're curious about, however, and hope to investigate in the future.


2/8/2016 11:35 AM
Edited Date/Time: 2/8/2016 11:36 AM

Andrextr, excellent overview of the curb method and a great contribution to the Vital forum! We appreciate your efforts to educate other riders.

For those tinkering with their rides, here's an additional resource from FOX that might be helpful. They also make note of the curb test. -


2/16/2016 2:21 PM


After many requests, here it is the video with some tips and my personal advice for adjusting the High and Low speed Compression and Rebound damping.

I hope you find it useful !