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So I've been having issues with my 2020 GT Aggressor since day 1. My forks feel very unstable at any adjustment. Upon inspection I noticed that the hex bolts underneath the forks (the ones that hold the upper and lower tubes together) are not equal. One is screwed in a couple times more than the other one.

Is this normal? Should I make them even? And if so which bolt should I alter to match the other?

The shock is SR Suntour XCT with 80mm and coils.

The bike is a "Comp" model.

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    Photo please! Let's see what's going on.
    – MaplePanda
    Dec 30, 2022 at 6:17

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A specific answer requires the exact fork model. One listing I found shows the GT Aggressor 2020 is kitted out with a SR Suntour M3030, 75mm, Coil fork. The only adjustments you have on this fork are the spring preload. There is no damping adjustment, meaning the bottom bolts/nuts are for fixing only.

It is possible you have a GT OEM fork with a right-side adjustable damper. Suntours XCT exploded views all show fixing nuts on the fork bottom, not hex bolts. Bikes of same make/model for different markets can have different components. We really need to know exact model of for or reference to the bikes owner manual.

These are entry level forks. Cheap coil forks will have a fixed damper providing a degree of damping. Unfortunately, the require amount of damping on a fork depends on the spring preload, rider weight and riders style and preferences. A fixed damper rarely provides correct damping for ideal performance. Additionally, the springs have a fixed rate. Preload helps to make the adjustable but withing a very limited range. You can in theory get additional springs (lighter and heavier than stock) and should select a spring to suit your weight and riding style. This is rarely done on entry level shocks due cost and still having marginal performance. What this means is in most cases forks such as this behave more like pogo sticks than shocks, and its easy to expect more from them than they are capable of delivering.

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    There was a recall on certain Suntour fork models. Check their website to see if your fork falls into recall. I believe the issue was the rod connecting the upper to the lowers was defective. This may explain why there is more thread exposed on one side than the other.
    – mikes
    Dec 31, 2022 at 8:53

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