Header Image

For a downloadable pdf of this info click HERE.

This Guide is meant to help you understand what clicker adjustments do, how they can help get the shock tuned in and how to properly adjust them. What this guide will not do is tell you where to set them. There is no magic number, no specific setting that is a set it and forget it on a shock with hydraulic (clicker) adjustments. Some of the best advice we can give you is do not be afraid to play with these clicker adjustments, the more you fiddle with them the more familiar you become with them and more comfortable you become with them. We are also here for help don’t be afraid to ask.

The Different Types

Let’s start by describing and identifying the different hydraulic (Clicker) adjustments that dampers (shocks) can come equipped with. These can be mixed with some or all of these adjusters.

NOTE*. When we refer to “speed” we are referring to Shaft speed. The speed at which the shaft of the shock enters the body and displaces oil that displaced oil is controlled via these clicker adjustments.

Rebound/bypass adjuster

This adjuster is normally located at the shaft eyelet end of the shock, the knob or screw in the eyelet is graduated needle that when screwed in or out moves a rod up and down inside of the chrome main shaft that you can see. This rod opens and closes a port in the shaft end that bypasses the piston valving stack completely. So if this is adjusted to Fast/soft/open it will feel like the shock springs back to fast and has no damping essentially bypassing most of the base valving in the shock.

This clicker is arguably most important feature on the rear shocks of most vehicles, it will help control what is referred to as bucking (the feeling of the rear of the machine when in the air coming up higher than the front and giving you that nose dive feeling, usually not good and scary) Slowing rebound down will help control that bucking by keeping the shocks from rebounding to fast and kicking the rear of the machine when launched into the air.

ADJUSTMENT: This should be the first adjustment to get straightened out of all of them IF AVAIABLE. Once this is set you can move on to fine tuning compression settings.

  1. Turn the clicker all the way soft/fast/out/loose or firm/slow/in/tighten (different manufactures refer to the adjustment as different things) , Once it is lightly seated to the furthest most point of the direction you went start to go the other direction and count each “Click” . When you get as far as it goes the other direction that will be the total amount of clicks you have available. Divide that number in half to get the middle position. In scenarios when the total number is odd round up to the next closest number for the middle position.

  2. Set the clicker in the middle position of the clicker range that will be a good starting point to begin field tuning the rebound circuit of the shock.

*NOTE all clicker REBOUND and COMPRESSION should be in the middle position before the vehicle is taken out for field tuning.

  1. The absolute best way to find the proper adjustment is to go over the same trail chop multiple times that way your testing condition stays the same and you can feel the area your adjustment has changed the ride. So if there is a nasty spot in the trail that the machine did something you did not like, stop, and make a 3 click adjustment on the shocks on the end of the vehicle that you want changed (Front or Rear). Ride back over that particular stretch again and make a mental note as to what has changed in ride quality. If the machine feels like it is kicking you over the bars or the rear comes up after every jump bump or waterbar slow the rebound down in the rear. If you hit 2 bumps in a row and the second one feels worse than the first speed the round up. If your feeling too much feedback in the bars or the machine is diving hard into the corner slow the rebound down if it feels to stiff and the second or third bump feel worse than the first speed it up.

  2. Once again there is no right or wrong adjustment it is totally what the rider/s feel is most comfortable to them. Everyone’s butt dyno is a little different, the main portion of this is to provide the customer the knowledge to be able to perform adjustments and not to be afraid or intimidated. It can and will make a difference in ride comfort, and lap times with them adjusted to make the rider more comfortable and confident.

Compression adjuster

This adjustment is located on the bottle, remote reservoir or on the top of the body of the piggyback reservoir of the shock. This can be a low speed adjuster by itself or on the inside of a hex or knob adjuster which would be the high speed compression adjuster. How can you tell which one you have? If there is an adjuster inside of an adjuster then you have high and low. If it’s just 1 knob or clicker, that would be considered low speed compression adjuster. If there is a knob or adjuster inside of another adjuster the inside will be the low speed outside will be the high-speed.

LOW SPEED adjustment

Low Speed

Low speed (Shaft speed) adjustment is the most common adjustment with any shock that has a remote reservoir or piggyback reservoir. Low speed adjustment is the adjustment circuit most commonly used for ride quality adjustment. So if the shock feels to stiff or to soft you can use this low speed circuit to control the amount of fluid displaced by the shaft as the shaft enters the body.

ADJUSTMENT: The best method for tuning the low speed circuit is:

  1. Turn the clicker all the way soft/out/loose or firm/in/tighten, Once it is lightly seated to the furthest most point of the direction you went start to go the other direction and count each “Click” . When you get as far as it goes the other direction that will be the total amount of clicks you have available. Divide that number in half to get the middle position. Most shock have 12, 16, 18 or 21 clicks so the centers would be 6, 7,9,11. In odd number scenarios round up to the next closest number.
  2. Set the clicker in the middle position, “Example” If there is 18 clicks of compression, turn the clicker all the way in firm (tighten, not hard just until it seats) Then back the adjustment clicker off 8 clicks . That will be your center adjustment and a good spot to start with field tuning.

*NOTE all clicker REBOUND and COMPRESSION should be in the middle position before the vehicle is taken out for field tuning.

3. The absolute best way to find the proper adjustment is to go over the same trail chop multiple times that way your testing condition stays the same and you can feel the area your adjustment has changed the ride. So if there is a nasty spot in the trail that the machine did something you did not like, stop, and make a 3 click adjustment on the shocks on the end of the vehicle that you want changed (Front or Rear). Ride back over that particular stretch again and make a mental note as to what has changed in ride quality. To soft and the machine will bottom, to firm and the machine will feel just that and you will normally feel that more in your neck shoulders and back. Its best to only do 1 adjustment at a time (Just low speed compression, or just high speed compression , or just rebound)

4. If you’re having an issue finding an adjustment that is to your liking your base valving may need changed, the shocks may need serviced if they haven’t been or the rebound/bypass clicker if applicable could need adjusting (see rebound clicker adjustment section).

High Speed

High speed (Shaft speed) adjustment is a lot less common adjustment and not as frequently found on OEM shocks, this adjustment will be felt and noticed while riding more aggressively and really putting the vehicles suspension through its paces. High speed adjustment will be affected by low speed adjustment and rebound adjustment on some units. This should be the last of the adjustments made during field tuning because it will not affect the other adjustments and it is normally the least used circuit of the shock.

HIGH SPEED Clicker Adjustment

ADJUSTMENT: The best method for tuning the high speed circuit is:

1.Turn the clicker all the way soft/out/loose or firm/in/tighten, Once it is lightly seated to the furthest most point of the direction you went start to go the other direction and count each “Click” . When you get as far as it goes the other direction that will be the total amount of clicks you have available. Divide that number in half to get the middle position.

*NOTE: A lot of high speed adjusters do not have the pronounced “CLICK” or any type of detent, it may be necessary to count the turns in this case to determine middle position.

2. Set the clicker/adjuster in the middle position. That will be your center adjustment and a good spot to start with field tuning.

3. The absolute best way to find the proper adjustment is to go over the same trail chop multiple times that way your testing condition stays the same and you can feel the area your adjustment has changed the ride. So if there is a nasty spot in the trail that the machine did something you did not like, stop, and make a 3 clicks, or 180’ turn of adjustment on the shocks, on the end of the vehicle that you want changed (Front or Rear). Ride back over that particular stretch again and make a mental note as to what has changed in ride quality. Too soft on high speed and the machine will bottom hard, to firm and the machine will feel just that and you will normally feel that more in your neck shoulders and back. It’s harder to immediately tell if high speed to firm or not usually this takes some miles to get a good feel for the high speed circuit’s adjustments. Its best to only do 1 adjustment at a time (Just low speed compression, or just high speed compression , or just rebound)

4. If you’re having an issue finding an adjustment that is to your liking your base valving may need changed, the shocks may need serviced if they haven’t been or the rebound/bypass clicker if applicable could need adjusting (see rebound clicker adjustment). High speed compression adjustment is the last adjustment because sometimes you can play with it for 100 miles or so before finding a good setting and it does not affect low speed circuit or the rebound circuit.

Flying High ATCs

The best piece of advice given at this point is do not be afraid to play with the adjustments and see what works better and what doesn’t for YOUR riding style. Some like it softer, some like it firmer, some like it with a little more body roll in the corners. There is not right or wrong way to have them set.

If you’re worried about losing a spot you have found, (setting wise) take notes – write down were you’re at. If you’re 10 clicks from slow on rebound, 5 clicks from hard on low speed comp and 1.5 turns out from hard on high speed, it will get you back in case you start to get away from what feels good. We hope this has been helpful in allowing you to understand how and what these clickers do and how to adjust them.

Thank you.

For a downloadable pdf of this info click HERE.

New Shock Brands We Carry We are a direct dealer for:

Elka Log
Walker Evens logo
Ohlins logo

We are a reseller for:

We are a reseller for - fox
We are a reseller for - axis