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by Jacob Layton

Since we picked up a new Canon R5, it was the perfect time to shoot some crispy 4K 120fps of the MTS Spring kit working on the X3. To do that, the MTS crew came out and helped us adjust the settings including ride height, crossover ring height, High and low speed compression, and rebound, at the Boulders OHV area, to see what my 2021 Can Am X3 XRC is capable of with just a spring kit. Killer dirt thanks to the rain, killer day, and a great group of guys to help get dialed, learn, and get ready for the revalve, which will be in a future video. www.chupacabraoffroad.com www.mtsoffroad.com
























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(1:07) These whoops are bigger than they look. To me, it kind of feels like the mid-stroke felt harsh. Going through those bigger bumps back there, it just felt like I felt pretty planted in control. It just felt like the mid-stroke, we weren't using all the travel, maybe we could have used more. That's kind of my initial impression of Life.

(1:27) Greg, what did you feel from sitting in the passenger seat?

(1:38) From about the initial start of the stroke to at least halfway, and then it starts to start to absorb a lot more, but that initial bottom end is real low with both of you in there too.

(1:53) So that's a huge part. Let's take a look at the video. A little low, if you're looking at the roof line, the car looks really, really good, nice and flat through there.

(2:08) So I'll look at something like this right here, and I gotta keep my four eyes on, sorry. So we'll come through here and this is where we'll start dissecting this stuff and what the tire's doing right there. And the idea is to keep going a lot further than what you probably anticipated.

(2:28) Yeah, no, I was going to say the same thing. It looks like we're close to bottoming and didn't feel like that. So what you're feeling right there guys is you do have some low crossovers. If we raise those crossovers up a little bit, you're going to feel like that mid-stroke's not harsh. Ideally looking at this and seeing where your crossover is at, I would recommend we raise them a little bit and that'll cushion your mid-stroke a little bit because you're kind of feeling it slapping the mainspring. And that'll give you a little bit more plushness and that'll help that part of it.

(3:01) I'm looking here, we'll take a look and see where your rebounds are and see if we can get the tire to drop out a little quicker. The car looks really good. I mean some of these are really big. Look how far under the stroke you're getting right there and look at the flatness of the roof. If you just sit there and check this out, the car looks really good. That's just because maybe the balance front to right. The car's balanced pretty good right now but I see some, based on what your feedback is, there's a couple flaws in it. Let's get the crossovers up a hair and if we need to for bottom out control, we'll use high speed and slow it down a little bit there. But your stroke will be smoother if we get out of the crossover nuts.

(3:47) Now I also see some rebound issues in here where if we let the tires drop out faster, you're also going to not feel as much harshness because if you look like right here, the tire comes up off the ground and hits the face of the other side. If that tire drops down quicker, you're not going to feel that harshness right there of that initial blow. So what I'll do is I'll take a look at all four corners and I would like to raise your crossover nuts just a hair and then probably add some rear compression to it with your high speed.

(4:21) I think front and back is only one turn in from all the way soft. Okay, we'll make it start feeling a little bit better. What about your low speed? I think same thing, one turn. I usually run that stuff. That's fine. So let's make an adjustment, just see how good we can make this feel right now. We'll raise crossovers just a hair and probably soften up the front too and speed up your rebound change it too.

(4:48) I'm going down about three quarters. Thank you.

(4:58) All right, so the guys raised the ride height up, played with the crossover rings, double-checked the compression settings. We had some ideas on how we can improve it. So we're gonna make the same pass, a couple passes, same bumps around the same speed and see how it goes.

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(5:40) What did you feel from the changes that we made?

(5:45) Okay, so the ride height feels like it's in a better position for using more of the travel. I felt like more of the mid-stroke was being used. That being said, coming around these turns, I hit it maybe a little bit more in the couple miles an hour fast, but the last time, but I also ran both of those corners wide and of course with a little bit higher off the ground, it was a little bit harder to control. So, you know, trade-off, got some plushness. I need to maybe just kind of get used to it before I push it hard at this newer ride height.

(6:14) Sure, and you looked like you picked up the pace a little bit from, like you were just a little bit more comfortable these passes. As far as comfortability, because looking at the video, your car was still pretty flat just like it was last time, did it feel better in the seats?

(6:29) I thought I felt better in the seats because it just felt being up more. We're out of that bump zone and we had more to use in the middle of it. Those bumps are pretty big and it just felt like we were in a better space before we got into them where it felt like before we were already low and we just were...

(6:43) You were passing through the bypass ports quicker, so anytime we can get... and we feel like this is kind of the happy medium where it's not too high to where it could be tippy, but it's at a good spot where you can still drive the car hard like you're doing but be comfortable doing it.

(7:00) Yeah, that's what Greg was just saying and I think I aligned with you. I want plush, gooey, and then more so than that drivability because one of the things I like about this car is it is so lively. I can become a better driver and slam on the brakes and set it in and get it to feel that way compared to the live valve type cars that are good in a lot of ways but, you know, I guess we're chasing the same thing.

(7:23) We're chasing as much plushness and comfort and keeping the drivability there. Yeah, so right now you're soft in the front and the rear. You're two turns in on compression. Do you feel like you want to make any adjustments to better tailor fit this for what you're trying to accomplish?

(7:39) I feel like reducing some compression in the rear maybe to see if it moves a little more and it's a little... it sets it just felt firm. We've got room to lighten it up, so that's good. That's what it kind of feels like I'd like to try. Got it. I do like the ride height of it for, you know, with two guys in it, it definitely felt low as soon as you know we're driving today with another full-size adult in it.

(8:10) Who's the driver's seat most of the time? Lots of muscles over here. Can you talk about that, Nick? Because, you know, I was talking to Jeep too about one person in the car. I'm always thinking about how does this car feel? How can I make it better? But with one person versus two makes a big difference. Did you like it better with two? I love it. I think it's much better. Does the car feel better? Yeah, think about it. You got the inertia of your... I'm going to just say 190 pounds, 205. See, I guess, right? Right here, you know, you're buckled in going up and down on this side, so it's not balanced. Yeah, and so putting another person in always, the car always feels better. I mean, it feels really, it feels balanced. It feels front to back. It doesn't feel like, it doesn't feel like rebound-wise it's kicking.

(9:00) And that's something I kind of try to shoot on my own. Quick look, I mean, you're definitely clipping off a faster pace here and the car is very flat. Chains on the trailer. What did you think the rebound looked like? The hooks for grabbing it, pulling it up. It's very flat right through here. Now, what we did is, we're as light as we can go on rebound. The tire will not drop out any quicker. And so it still could, you know, based on the video, it would be nice to have a little less rebound through some of these areas. But at some point, you're going to go so fast, you're going to start skipping no matter what the simple laws of physics. But it looks really good right through here. The car's nice and flat. And what's cool is, if you notice, half of the car's in the whoops and half isn't. And look at the cage, you guys are nice and flat through here. So that's a good thing. The ride height alone looks a lot better. Yeah, it's sitting up a little higher going over those whoops. The funny set about rebound too, because it doesn't feel like the rebound's too fast. And you said it was almost... there's very little of it. We cannot speed up the rebound anymore. It's all the way loose. Unless we do a re-valve, that is correct. Yeah, and coming through here with our setup, the tire's going to drop down a little bit quicker. So you think for the re-valve, maybe give us a little bit more of an option to have a little bit faster rebound. So yeah, in talking with us, when we're building the kit for you, for each individual customer, we can customize that. And are you going to run out here? You're going to tell us, where do you run? And then we're going to accommodate rebound and compression and the whole... basically the whole chemistry of the whole car. I mean, that's everything. That's what springs we decide to pick for you based on what you tell us, valving, nitrogen, all of it comes together to create the combination for the plush ride, yet a ride that you can just get after it. You can just really get after it.

(10:54) What do you think about the spring rate? I mean, the car, it looks great as far as the attitude of the car, everything's coming through here. It's great. You're in a position where you could drive this car, tires are on the ground. I don't think I'd change anything as far as spring rate goes. Now, if you want to do something different, let's say you want to go to Moab or you want to just go rally Baja, we might make some adjustments for what you're doing and what you told us you want to accomplish. I think you're dialed. I was going to say, this type of stuff, let's say I could go through it five to eight mile an hour faster. Not that I really would on a normal day-to-day ride, I still don't feel like it would bottom. No. So to me, it feels like the spring rate doesn't need to be any... No, I don't think what we've seen so far and where your adjustments are, I don't think you need anything else.

(11:43) Awesome. No, I don't know. I don't. I think you're good. We can actually take one to two turns out if you want and you will get even a little bit more plushness in the rear. So you have two turns we could play with. Yeah. And then you're maximized each way on the valving that Can-Am gave us, Can-Am Fox gave us to play with. Do you guys like having a little bit of it, like one turn in or do you guys want to completely wide open sometimes too? So it depends on where you're at with the terrain that you're in, what you're trying to accomplish. Every driver is different. Like I say, we could come out here and adjust four different Can-Am two-seaters and based on the driver, the settings are going to be different. Yeah. So I like the idea of out here, there's very little, almost none. Let's say one more turnout, that's probably my happy spot. But then if I go to the dunes, I could crank it up a couple turns and get some more support for those G-outs. Sure. And in the dunes, what you might do is you're going to run more compression. You might lower the crossover a little bit and run a little bit more rebound. And that's typical. How much would you lower the crossover if I took this car to Glamis? Right from where it's at, I'd probably go three quarters of an inch. Okay. That's a starting point. Yeah. About that, three quarters of an inch right around there. That's a starting point.

(12:53) Now you get out to go, don't have a tool with you. Yeah. You got a screwdriver. Okay. So we know what the dunes do with this exact tune that's in this car and where a lot of people are close to. So we could tell you, hey, drop it three quarters of an inch. If your ride height is 18 degrees in the rear, 19 front, and you tell us what the gap is in between spring divider and crossover, we're going to say, okay, typically at the dunes, you need to probably close that gap down a little bit and add a little bit of rebound. Like if you were going out, you're going to be all the way loose in the front, all the way tight in the rear. First, you know, that's just that hill requires a little bit different setup. Oh yeah. You can be all the way loose, all the way tight against the laws of physics when you're going down up and then, but you've seen our videos. I mean, we get our cars to do that and they take a little bit of adjustment, external adjustment. They'll do it though. Very cool. Awesome.

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(14:25) I mean, that's the, those bumps we should be using what 90% of it, 95% of it. Depends on how you valve it and how harsh you want it, but yeah, if you want it plus, you're going to use a lot more. If you want to take this and go Evil Knievel, you're going to use a lot less because we're going to set it up a lot more aggressive. And that's the cool thing about these Can-Ams is you have the ability to go soft and you have the ability to set it up to go Evil Knievel, you know, which is cool. Yeah. Everything right now, your settings that we ended up with looks like you could spend a lot of time out here and you're 100% in control and you're going to be safe. That's just the spring kit, you know, it's just going to get better from here once we throw a valving to it. Impressive. Yeah. Very cool.

(16:05) Hey everybody, Nick Olson, Chupacabra Off-Road. We're back out here in the desert with Jeep of MTS Off-Road. The whole MTS Off-Road gang came out today to help educate us on how we can get our X3 dialed and get it running better. So, quick little, do you want to introduce yourself and then talk about MTS Off-Road and what services you guys offer for the side-by-side community?

(16:26) So my name is Jeep Porter. I'm one of the shock tuners here at MTS Off-Road. At MTS, we offer a variety of products from upcoming products like the clevis on the Pro R to limit strap kits to reservoir caps, spring kits, valving, really anything suspension-wise besides the arms themselves on UTVs.

(16:47) So as you guys know, I've been following the channel. I've got a 2021 Can-Am X3 XRC. When I first picked up the vehicle and drove a few hundred miles, I was really impressed with how it was stock, the suspension performance, but of course, there's a lot more performance to be gained. So if you haven't seen a video on our channel back in May, we started with an MTS spring kit. So starting off, we'll go ahead and post what I sent, but Jeep and the gang at MTS have a questionnaire to fill out. How aggressive do you drive? Where do you like to drive? And then from there, they're taking that information, what kind of accessories you've got on your vehicle and get a spring rate set up. So we had that on the vehicle. I then put several hundred miles on my car. I've got about 1300 miles so far and I've tried to play around with what I thought was a good setting in terms of ride height, compression clickers, and where I was at on the crossover rings. And starting off today, that's what I was most interested in finding out. What'd you guys think of the setting when we first got here based on the feedback and based on my personal experience? So starting off, my ride height was about 17.5 inches in the front and 17 in the rear. So we started off and we made a couple passes. And what did you think of the car? And by the way, I made a pass with Greg in the vehicle as well. He was really knowledgeable. So we had two full-size adults in the car. And what'd you think of what you see?

(18:00) So initially when we got here, we thought that the car is just a tad bit low. We want to try to keep the piston inside the shock below the bypass ports at ride height with weight in it. That way you're not getting into your bump zone prematurely and used to have that nice cush, you know, pillowy ride. But you were really close. You know, the car looked really good, really flat, tires are working good, rebound is in a good spot. I think we really just raised ride height, made some crossover adjustments, a little bit of high speed, but other than that, you were dang near on the money.

(18:39) The Can-Am is such a lightweight car and it's the first two-seat car I've really owned in a while that it's so sensitive to the different weight and all that. So raising the car up, I mean, those first couple passes we made, Greg and I were talking and it definitely felt harsh. And from there, lifting it up a little bit and getting the mid-stroke to be a little bit more supple is just some simple adjustments that all of you X3 owners can make to get a lot more performance out of your vehicle. So I guess that's one thing to add out of this video when you say Jeep, like just playing around and taking time to think about what you might want your car to be like and make some adjustments.

(19:01) Yeah, there's a lot of adjustments that could be made. There's tons of different ways to do it versus, you know, tender springs, main springs, crossover height. Initially we thought that maybe your rear tender was a little bit too light for the amount of weight you had back there, but once you made a crossover adjustment, got the ride height dialed and just made a few passes with you, we realized that it's gonna be just fine. But really it's just working with the customer, listening, taking the time to understand what they're trying to tell you and just help them dial their car into what is specific to their driving style. Because not everybody's the same. Everybody has their preferences of how a car should feel and should not feel. So there's a million different ways that you could tune a car to make somebody feel comfortable while driving because that's really the end goal is to make them comfortable in what they drive.

(20:00) So speaking of comfortable, the guys want to come out here to Boulder's OHV area. This is pretty much in my backyard and terrain that I ride most of the time. I'm probably like most of you guys that watch the channel. I like to do all different types of riding. I was hoping to get a setup that worked well out here that was plush. I know that we have more performance we can gain once we go to a re-valve, but also too, I'm a guy that likes to go to the dunes and I'm sure you got this a lot from all your customers that are similar. They want something that's going to work in the dunes as well as out here on the hard pack.

(20:20) Yeah, everyone kind of wants an all-around setup and that's why we do the questionnaires because sometimes you have the guys who are 90 desert, 10 dunes, but majority, I'd say 80% of the population is going to do everything. They're going to go do forest trails, cinders, you know, high-speed desert, rock crawling, dunes. So we really kind of dialed in our spring rates as far as tenders, mains, crossover settings to where we have a really good base setup for every type of terrain and every type of driver.

(20:49) So after we made some suspension changes and we hit a couple different sections here, you can see some of the footage, the car feels very stable, controllable, even with some, you know, kind of come sideways with some big bumps and types of things. And it felt good. I mean, one of the last adjustments we made is we reduced a little bit of the high-speed compression in the rear from two turns back to one, which is kind of what I normally run. And we could even feel the plushness gain there. So talking with Greg, I said, wow, going through this type of stuff, you know, some bigger bumps faster, 50 to 65 miles an hour, I wouldn't really go faster through a lot of that stuff normally. And I was very happy with it. So, you know, as we go into the next phase of this video, you guys are going to see soon, we're going to send the shocks and have the guys re-valve. What are some additional performance gains you think we can make from all different other types of riding speeds and terrain?

(21:30) You're going to gain a lot more plush mid-stroke. So the one thing we try to do when we tune is to free up the suspension a little bit to your, you know, smaller to medium-sized bumps. You kind of want the tire to just freely move up and down and stay on the ground the entire time. That way the car is planted, responsive, you're gaining, you know, you actually have power put to the ground through every whoop. And then you're going to gain a lot more bottom-out control towards the end of the stroke as well, you know, G-outs, dunes, things like that, especially on a heavier car like yours on the rear. You're going to benefit a lot from our full valving setup plus our proprietary piston, which has a lot more flow rate than stock and a lot more tunability. You just gain a whole bunch of performance in every aspect.

(22:21) Seems like we're all chasing that Holy Grail, like out here, a popular ride that many of us do is the Crown King ride. It's slow, technical, you want something that's not going to beat you up, spending all day in the car going 5 to 20 miles an hour. And then, like you said, I want to be able to go out to Glamis and be able to push hard, follow some sand cars and G-outs and not bottom out. So is that kind of similar to a lot of customers kind of just chasing or that Holy Grail of just plushness in all situations?

(22:48) Yeah, and that's kind of what the valving does as well. It gives you a larger range of adjustability. So when you're all the way soft, it's a lot more plush for when you're doing the rock crawler type situations or like Box Canyon where it's just real rocky, big, you know, bowling ball-sized boulders. And then when you really need the car to perform through whoops, dunes, you can tighten it up and have a lot more bottom-out resistance than a stock car or even a car with a spring kit as well.

(23:11) Well, being here in Arizona, we're pretty spoiled. We have a lot of different awesome terrains within a few hours' drive. So Jeep, you guys have tuned hundreds, maybe even thousands of X-rays at this point. You guys are tuning in Glamising all over the place. What have you learned about the X3s in general? A lot of guys watching this video that have a car similar to mine from model year 2017 to current, what do you like about them? What are the takeaways if you own a vehicle and you want to improve the suspension performance?

(23:36) One of the things that we learned, especially on the earlier models, that two-seater specifically, that the bypass tubes just didn't have the amount of flow that we wanted. And a big thing is keeping the cost down for the consumer. So we used to modify bypass tubes initially, but that's labor-intensive and takes a lot of time. But we've noticed over the years, actually, Can-Am's gotten better. They've increased their flow rate, added more ports as the years go on, and the cars have gotten plusher, a little bit better since the first model year 17. But to keep the cost down and make things work really well, we developed our own proprietary piston, which has more fine-tunability with bleeds or free bleeds or adjustable bleeds and more flow through the compression ports. One of the things we don't like about the stock ones is the sharp corner square edges. You know, it just creates a lot of heat inside the cars. But overall, the X3 is an amazing platform. These guys have owned several of them. And hopefully they come out with something new to compete with the Pro R, right?

(24:42) We'll see. I have to imagine, and you guys are seeing, if you follow the channel, I love driving the X3. The wheelbase for the two-seater is almost that magic mix.


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