The elusive Monarch shock. Man ive been trying a long time to get my hands on this 2011 version, now I finally succeeded.
The first version I got was faulty, the shock had issues with compression and rebound, send it back in, and got a new version - faulty as well. You can imagine my frustration at this point. I finally got a working version, and are now setup to do some proper testing.
My initial impressions are positive, this shock has very good midstroke, and the most effective compression adjust ive ever had the opportunity to try. The low/mid/firm setting is really just that, way more efficient than the one you find on the Fox RP23.
On the downside, I think that the beginning stroke is a bit hard, and end stroke is very hard to reach. However, the compression-curve to the endstroke is satisfying liniear, so I have some issues even mentioning this "fault".
To be honest, Its hard and snappy initial stroke makes me feel like its more a XC shock, but its potent handling of big hits allways makes me doubt this very idea. This shock has a split personality.
Weight resembles a FOX RP23, size shown is a 216x63mm:
(click to enlarge)
So is this a XC shock with a high volume canister strapped to it, or is it a legit AM shock that takes whatever you throw at it. Stick around to find out in the actual review.