PUSH ASC3 COIL CONVERSION - COMPONENT TEST
Back ten or so years ago most dampers were coil. The air shaft technology was young and still undergoing some fine tuning, whereas now most fork and rear dampers have an air spring to keep things bouncy. The ease of setup with an air damper makes it very inviting for most riders, but if you haven’t tried out a setup coil then, in our eyes, you are missing out.
Having spent time on our fair share of rear shocks such, as the EXT Storia, it was time to upgrade the fork. PUSH have a product that could just tickle our taste buds coming in, in the form of the ACS3 coil spring upgrade.
What Do You Get?
The kit consists of everything you would need to replace the air spring on either the RockShox Lyrik or the Fox 36.
There are multiple spring choices, so make sure to get that bang on. Aim to almost size up on what you think you need (all will be explained later).
Inside the box is the lower shaft complete with top out spring and all clips, nuts and seals you would need. Then there is the spring itself. This has a solId heat shrink cover to stop that annoying rattle. The last component is the bottom-out aid. This little air shaft allows you to fine tune the end stroke.
Fitting this setup is super easy. If you can carry out a lower leg service then you should have no trouble getting this kit in and set up. Before we go into detail there are a few points that are worth mentioning.
If you have not replaced your seals in some time, then make sure to do this when fitting the kit.
Check the condition of the bushes in the fork before popping the kit in. More details will be explained, but this makes a massive difference.
Use the correct oil and the correct amount.
The air shaft cannot be re fitted after the coil has been used.
Things you will need are; Oil, suspension grease, degreaser, bottle brush or fork brush for cleaning. As well as the correct tools; a socket set, Allen key set and a good flat screwdriver or pick to remove the retaining clip.
Ok, so down to business. Here is a quick step by step on how to fit the push system...
Remove fork and throughly clean.
Let out ALL air.
Remove the adjusters and nuts from bottom of fork (Fox requires a 10mm and a 14mm spanner or socket.)
Tap each shaft (with nut slightly on to remove fork lowers.) OIL WILL COME OUT....so have something to hand to catch it in.
Once the lowers are out, remove the top cap assembly and the clip that holds the air shaft in. Place all of this to one side and sell it….. as it cannot be refitted.
Give the whole setup a real good internal clean up using degreaser and hot water. Allow this to dry or blow it out with a compressor.
Remove the new lower shaft assembly and fit it into where the air shaft came from, this should be a like for like swap, so nice and easy. Make sure to use the new retaining clip that is supplied.
Next up get some suspension grease and cover the spring….don’t hold back. Then place into the top where the air chamber used to be.
Now fit the spring retainer (also cover it in grease) and then pop the top cap assembly in and nip it up, but not too tight.
The rest is what you would do for a lower leg service, change the seals, pop the lower partly onto the CSU assembly and pop some oil into them lowers.
Last thing would be to push the fork down allowing both shafts to find their hole and screw the nuts back on using the new seals provided.
All this should take under an hour if you have a bit of knowledge in bike maintenance.
The Fox fork that we had the setup fitted to was a pretty tired 170mm travel 29” 36. After a few days riding it was clear that the full potential of the ASC3 was not being had, so the lowers were removed and the bushes were honed out or refinished to give them a fresh lease of life. This really makes such a difference. The coil setup was so much more supple than the air vesion that had been ridden from new. The fork was also ridden back to back against a Grip 2 Float 36. That little bit of resistance from the bush was amplified with the coil setup and really noticeable. Hence check your bush condition before fitting.
With the bushes sorted and the fork back in action one thing that was noticed straight away was the way the front wheel tracked the ground after having the coil fitted. There was more grip and control, where before there was not. Overall the fork felt fairly soft but had the correct amount of sag for my weight. And again the grip was vastly improved.
There was some fettling to be done in the way of the bottom out (or ramp up air shaft). Push give a 5 to 50 psi range but it is clear to see that if you are running 5 psi then you either have the wrong spring or are not riding hard enough. Straight away about two drops in on the first ride, the 25 psi was clearly not enough. As any bike being testing gets a thrashing….and a real one at that, the pressure was increased all the way up to the max at 50 psi. This still kept the low down grip but aided a little more when hitting those bigger compressions.
The Push ASC3 kit has undergone some serious testing, but this still does not make it perfect. After a day the fork developed a rattle. When the fork was stripped for the bush renovation, the internals were covered in small rubber parts. This was from the top out bumper. After going through some testing in the Mojo HQ, we ended up making a slightly larger rubber washer to replace the old one. This totally silenced the fork and was, to be honest, a very small issue that can easily be remedied.
The Push ASC3 kit, in our eyes, a good option for the die hard coil enthusiast. It’s hard to make the jump back to coil from air when the air shafts are so good these days, but Push has made a good option for those who like that supple feeling fork. The simple fitting means this can be done at home is another big plus side. Make sure that you get the correct spring for your needs. If you are a sender, you will need a stiffer spring!
All in all a nice piece of kit. We will be running the fork this year to see how it wears and we will keep everyone posted.
There is also an added bonus for those running the RockShox setup with Push having the HC97 HYPERCHARGER COMPRESSION SYSTEM UPGRADE.
PRICE - £375 for the Fox 36 kit tested
WORDS - IEUAN WILLIAMS
PHOTOS - ALEX HUNTER/ IEUAN WILLIAMS