I ask because I realized yesterday that I had left lockout on for hours of riding at a bmx style track hitting jumps and wallrides.

I found the lockout helped a lot and I'll continue using it for that if it doesn't damage my shocks.

EDIT: The exact model of fork I have is

Rock Shox 30 Silver TK Solo Air
Tapered Steerer / Remote Lockout
Reb. Adj. / 100mm travel
  • 3
    Rockshox makes a variety of shocks. You should be more specific as to the type you're running.
    – Batman
    Jun 26, 2016 at 17:06
  • If locking out the shock feels better on a bumpy track, then you don't really need the shock... but you're still carrying it about.
    – Criggie
    Jun 26, 2016 at 20:01
  • 1
    @Batman, I updated my question with the exact model of fork. My bike is a scott scale 760. Jun 26, 2016 at 21:21
  • 1
    @Criggie bmx / pump tracks are actually pretty smooth with small hills, a very different type of 'bumpy' to trail riding.
    – Nic
    Jun 26, 2016 at 21:42
  • @nic that's my point. There's little reason to carry the weight of the shock around the track, which is why BMX don't come with suspension. If this is OP's main riding, then a rigid will be lighter.
    – Criggie
    Jun 27, 2016 at 0:56

1 Answer 1


First, you should understand how suspensions with lockouts work. Fluid suspensions(oil or air) like yours have a valve inside them that lets the fluid flow through at a constricted rate on the way up, and very quickly on the way down. This is what gives the dampening effect on suspensions. Lockouts effectively completely close off that valve.
However, obviously the valve is not infinitely strong. At some point, it will give way and let the air through. This is where blow-offs come in. Blow-off basically refers to that point where the lockout 'fails' and dampens the shock anyway.
The model you have has something called TurnKey which is Rock Shox patented name for blow-off. It has an adjustable blow-off point which will let you set the amount of force required for the blow-off to occur.
Now that you know how these systems work, consider your case of riding your MTB as a BMX on a track. If you set the turnkey/blowoff too low, you'll risk it suddenly dropping on a big landing and if you are taking a turn or something immediately after, you can risk losing your balance. If you set it too high, you probably can damage the valve in the shocks by stressing it too much.
So to conclude, not really, riding on the lockout won't affect the suspension too much because as soon as the wheel hits something too hard, the lockout will 'fail' and go back to normal damping as long as you don't set the blow-off so high that it is practically impossible to hit the bow-off. Just don't set it so low you hit the drop-off all the time and defeat the point of locking out.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.