2022/03/13 – Oliphant

More trail work, and a little riding to test the fork rebuild…

So, yes, having rebound damping IS an improvement (surprise). The first noticed change was that the forks were effectively shorter … e.g. the front wheel wouldn’t touch/reach as quickly after a bump/lifter that took the wheel off the ground. After a bit I realized it was also a little less bouncy, more inclined to stick to the ground. By the same token, sometimes you want to lift the front end and that takes a bit more effort. So, no surprises here, but as the Racetech book said, often the clickers make so little difference that it’s hard to be able to tell if they’re full hard or full soft… so it was nice to be able to get a bit of a feel for what was wrong with “no rebound” (damping).

(Why was it broken? I didn’t screw the nut holding the rebound shim stack down hard enough… and I did that because I didn’t understand how the rebound check valve worked. I also reversed one check valve plate, those are probably wear items that a good suspension shop replaces on most rebuilds.)

Trail work. I didn’t ride much. The plan was to survey options for the second half of the trail.

I started part way up the old trail and all the options for the new route looked like hard going, so I decided to try it from the other direction… which meant I spent the next hour or more working on the top part of the trail.

Looking down on the ground the bottom half needed to traverse, a fairly easy (and it turns out boring) route was obvious, it was just a matter of getting around the burn pile and then into the old equipment tracks. A good few hours later I had worked my way down that (skipping clearing the bottom flatter bit), and walked back to the bike for the loppers to clear some of the broom.

Given the amount of time I’ve sunk into the top half, it was a bit of a shock to clear AND RIDE the bottom half in less than a day. But like I said, aside from being steep, it is boring. It had rained a bit, so it was actually a pretty hard climb. Didn’t help that I was wiped out from four or five hours of clearing. And I rode out via the old logging track that James and I looked at last year… the top half still needs to be tried, but I don’t want to try it solo…. either that or some of it needs to be rerouted.