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Orbea Rallon: Suspension Settings for BOS Kirk Shock

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How to set up the BOS Kirk and Deville shock and fork on the Orbea Rallon.

Setting Up The BOS Suspension On My Orbea Rallon

Recently I have had a few emails asking how I set up my BOS suspension on the Orbea Rallon to get it right. As I talked about in the Orbea Rallon Review which I wrote it isn´t all that straight forward to set up but after experimenting and asking other people for advice I got it feeling really, really nice. To see how I set up the suspension then have a look below.

First thing to tell you is that I´m not a suspension engineer and I have a pretty basic understanding of all the clever stuff that´s happening inside the shock. I know how I like my bike to feel and have a rough idea what knobs to twiddle to make that happen but I´m not an expert at all. This is a guide to how I set up my shock and a few people have told me that it helped them, hence me putting it down in writing. If people have different ideas or methods then it would be fantastic to have them included in the comments section.

Orbea Rallon BOS Suspension Settings Step 1: SAG

The sag is important and how you set it up is going to depend on how aggressive you are. Start at your normal 30% and adjust from there. The bike is really linear so you are going to bottom out occasionally, BOS say not to worry about it but to set up the shock for the 98% of your riding and accept that you will occasionally bottom out. I would normally run little sag, like around 20% but I found with the Rallon it worked better with more sag but using the HSC to stop bottoming out. I ended up at 25-27% sag, which for my 80kg + a heavy guiding backpack is around 185psi.

Orbea Rallon BOS Suspension Settings Step 2: HIGH SPEED COMPRESSION, (HSC)

Very basically, and you don´t need to know more than this I don´t think, the HSC controls how the suspension reacts to high speed impacts, so those rocks you hit where the piston of the shock is moving really quickly. The Orbea Rallon needs quite a lot of HSC. I started from all the way on and adjusted it back from there. If you have too much then you will get harshness, too little and you will be bottoming it out all the time. I settled on using 6 clicks from full HSC. I.e. go all the way in the + direction and then back towards the – 6 clicks. I don´t adjust this at all for different tracks, I find it works really well just leaving it there.

Orbea Rallon BOS Suspension Settings Step 3: LOW SPEED COMPRESSION (LSC)

Again basically, the LSC controls slower impacts, so body weight moves, compressions into corners, changes in angles of slopes and pedalling inputs. The frame has good anti squat characteristics so didn´t find that I needed much LSC. I started at fully open, i.e. minimum LSC, and worked from there. I ended up with 3 clicks from fully open, i.e. wind it all the way towards – and then 3 clicks back in the + direction. Too much and it will make the shock harsh and too little and it will bob too much, wallow in the corners and be hard to pump.

I don´t change this at all either. The only thing is that I snapped my little Climb Switch lever off so if I have a long climb on fireroad then I´ll sometimes wind on all the LSC and then remember to wind it off at the top!

Orbea Rallon BOS Suspension Settings Step 3: REBOUND

The rebound is easier. If you feel the bike getting more harsh on multiple bumps, like a series of roots or rocks etc then you need it faster. If it feels like you are getting pogo´d about then you need less! Rebound can also affect cornering, if you´re finding the tyres washing out in bumpy corners then maybe some more rebound can help. I found that I needed almost all the rebound damping off. I opened it all the way and then back 6 clicks, i.e. wind all the way towards – and then back towards + 6 clicks. I change the rebound depending on the type of day I´m planning and the trails. It´s the only setting I play about with.

If that sounds complicated then it isn´t. First set sag to 30%. Then set the HSC and LSC to my settings. Then if it´s wallowy, bobs under pedalling or is hard to pump add more LSC. If you´re bottoming out a lot then you can either decrease sag or increase HSC. I found that smaller “chatter” type bumps were removed by increasing SAG and increasing HSC to compensate and stop bottoming out. If it felt harsh on bigger, faster hits then I removed HSC and decreased SAG accordingly. Rebound is set up according to the type of terrain but generally around 6 clicks from fully open worked for me.

I deliberately haven´t mentioned the fork. It´s a lot easier to set up I found and was less sensitive. I set the sag and the HSC and LSC more or less as above and it works well for me. I like to have the fork similar to the shock so that the bike feels balanced front and back, so I set up the shock first and then made the fork feel similar.

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