We’ve reviewed the steps to set your bike’s sag in the past, but we’re often surprised how many people don’t understand why it’s so important. So here’s quick rundown on the effects of not properly setting your sag by Sobe No Fear/Samsung/Honda’s Todd Brown…
By setting the rider sag to within an appropriate measurement range, the bike will be positioned so that the front and rear of the bike are loaded correctly. When the balance of a bike is biased one way or the other, it may adversely affect both ends.
TOO MUCH: Having too much sag (the bike sits high in the front and squats in the rear) can reduce the front end’s ability to absorb bumps. Light and less compliant, the front end will simply ricochet around and deflect off of obstacles, and can actually make the rear end feel harsher, as it will be settling deeper into the travel. In addition, too much sag will adversely affect the steering of your bike. With the rear end riding too low, the front end will ride high, thus not settling into corners and ruts like it’s capable of.
TOO LITTLE: Not enough sag (the bike sits too high in the rear) will greatly affect its high-speed stability. With too much preload (tension) on the spring, the rear end will not settle and will kick its way through braking bumps and off of jump faces. Overall traction may also be sacrificed.