I am seeking the right combination of shock pressure vs. Brain threshold settings for new Stumpjumper Elite (with Specialized Brain inertia valve) with respect to durability.

Are there any recommended settings for the trail/all-mountain kind of riding for the brain?

I found this chart suggesting 3-open setting for the brain: http://service.specialized.com/collateral/ownersguide/new/assets/pdf/AC0419_2013_air_chart_11x17.pdf

Sure it is affected by personal preference. My concern is to find if there is any significant influence of the settings to the Brain durability/service interval by next extremes:

  • low shock pressure + hard Brain threshold
  • vs. high shock pressure + soft Brain threshold

Does any of these extremes has significant influence on Brain durability/life-time? Or is it just a matter of personal preference?


The threshold setup of your shock should have a negligible if not non-existent bearing on its longevity. Run it how you like it.

To give you an idea of what you're concerned about breaking, watch this video that describes how Brain shocks work. About 2/3rds of the way through you will get to see the internals of a Brain shock's inertia valve. They are not as delicate as you may think.

  • Could you please add a source of this information? Thanks. – myneur Sep 15 '13 at 15:12
  • I've had lots of shocks apart and I've worked in a Specialized shop so I've worked with a lot of Brain shocks as well. I'm not a mechanical engineer but I have enough of a mechanical understanding to be able to determine that setting your shock up firmer or softer isn't going to bust up the valving any faster or slower. That's not to say that it's never going to fail, but you certainly shouldn't compromise your ride to try to squeak a little bit of extra time out of the shock. The inertia valves do give out sometime, but rider weight/setup does not seem to correlate to longevity. Just ride it. – joelmdev Sep 15 '13 at 15:24
  • Have a look at the video I posted in my edit. – joelmdev Sep 15 '13 at 15:34

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