The confusing part is that DVO has tons of good theory and information on their website about suspension setup as well as lots of self-aggrandisement, but this Metric 250×75 shock has no base settings online. There are only settings for older imperial sizes, so I started with the closest option of 241×76. Not ideal as Metric shocks have been around for years now.
DVO say these are just start settings and depend on the bike. Obviously, I have a strange, single-pivot, linear machine (testing on the titanium Egerie) with only 6% overall progression which is different to most mainstream bikes, but a linear means setup does mean that changes are very easy to feel.
Step 1 is always to set sag. DVO’s Spring Rate suggestion for my 73kg, fully-kitted weight is 450lb to get 23-30%. In reality, I’m using a 300lb spring to get 30% sag, that’s a 33% difference so it would be nice if they suggested spring rates in ranges for bikes with different amounts of progression. The website does say these are only starting settings, but if a customer with a similar setup to me ordered one with the 450lb spring they would need to go and buy another spring.
Next, I set the bladder pressure to 180psi as recommended (it arrived with 90psi so 100% should be checked before the first ride, as recommended in the manual).
Rebound is counted in the usual counterclockwise clicks from closed. For 73kg, minus 29-32 is recommended out of -37 clicks. My shock only has 20 clicks, I ended up riding around -9. Maybe the newer Metric ones have different settings?
Compression, for some reason, is measured in clockwise clicks from fully open. HSC should have been 24 but the maximum I could turn with my pathetic fingers were 14 incredibly hard-to-turn clicks from closed and needed another ten clicks to get to the recommended +3/+5 clicks from fully open. Releasing the bladder pressure did make it much easier to turn the adjuster and there were 24 clicks as suggested in the manual, but releasing and re-inflating the bladder is not really an option on the trail if you want to dial in the shock.
LSC should have 22. Mine had 25, this time easy-to-turn clicks. Again, I ended up fully closed (-1, never close a shock past the last click, when recommended was +2/+5 from open. There didn’t seem to be a huge difference between the clicks of compression. But that’s one reason for the Adjustable Bladder (instead of an IFP) to adjust the damping force through the entire shock then the adjusters can be used to fine-tune.
My recommendation, if you are starting out on this shock, would be to set the adjusters in the middle and work with the bladder pressure first, start with recommended, then try to go firmer or softer until you are happy with the level of support and then fine-tune with the adjusters: my original/recommended method seemed to waste a lot of trail time.