I was going to say the same thing... wonder if pack is tired. Even then though... there is a point when the leafs start separating.. where you ain't got shit for spring force.if you dont have enough preload in the pack from it being worn out, its not going to want to pull that shock down.
And, I'm all about trying different valving. To me, that's the ONLY way to know you have it the best you can get it. I'd get some .006's and have at it.
Oh, and PS. This conversation is just reminding me of my really old conversations with friends .... of why I wanted to move to a 3 or 4 link on my second build.