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The ability to really customize the feel of your fork can take your riding to the next level. The Fox GRIP2 damper upgrade kit will open your eyes and allow you to fully dial it in. Our friend, Lewis Vacek, decided to take the plunge when it was time to service his fork and get the upgrade kit. He gives us his review below. Check it out!
I was super stoked that Worldwide Cyclery carried the GRIP2 Damper upgrade for the Fox 36 fork. I always felt that there was some adjustment missing in the front end of the bike. Fox already makes a 4-way adjustable shock, so why not the fork too? I was really pleased with how quickly the product arrived and though the price of the damper wasn't cheap by any means, it is most certainly a lot cheaper than replacing your whole fork! It did take me a couple of weeks to get around to it, life happens right? Anyway, l was also waiting on a back-ordered air shaft assembly and some other service parts and tools I needed for the job.
I did finally get around to installing the Grip2 damper in my 2018 Fox 36 (performance elite) fork while at the same time doing a full service and stretching the fork travel to 180mm. Swapping out the damper while doing a full service is a piece of cake. You already have the fork pulled apart so what really amounts to a couple of extra steps to remove and reinstall the damper is not that much more work. Doing this at the same time as a fork service is a great idea. Cracking it all open just to swap out the damper is doable, but combining the jobs saves time and money overall – as well as reducing the no-bike downtime.
If you do this yourself, it's worth mentioning that when going from a Fit or Grip damper to the GRIP2 it's really important to make sure you clean out your stanchions and lowers thoroughly as the GRIP2 damper uses a much thinner 5wt PTFE oil. Otherwise, the GRIP2 damper comes with everything you need, right down to a new crush washer, and anything else you might need you can probably pick up from Worldwide Cyclery! With the very comprehensive instructions on Fox's website and a number of other very informative videos on Youtube, taking care of this pretty straightforward job is not only simple for anyone with a medium amount of skills but also very rewarding.
Now as for the result, after getting everything bolted back together again and on the bike, I was itching to get out for a ride and see what a difference it made. It was much easier to get the GRIP2 damper settings pretty close to where I think I will want them as compared to the old GRIP damper, and this is going from the base settings recommended by Fox and also how I had my old Grip damper set - well at least for now. With so much adjustability available on the GRIP2, it really gives you the ability to fine-tune it even more to your riding style. And the newfound sensitivity and the extra travel were sure welcome additions to on the gnarly wet conditions during my test ride day - I needed all the help I could get to keep it wheels-side-down!
Simply put, if you have a late model Fox 36, and you are looking for a little extra control and fine-tuning, and you don't want to drop break the bank with a whole new fork just yet, then give the GRIP2 damper upgrade a try - I'm glad I did.