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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good day all. I've looked through quite a few suspension threads on here but at this point, I figure it's quicker to just ask the question. What , if anything have you done to the stock suspension settings ? I just picked up this bike recently. Only have about 500 miles on it. That said, the front suspension seems harsher than any machine I've ever owned. I have no clue what the original owner did or didn't do with it. Judging by the wiring attempt they made to the rear lights, any decision they made was not an educated one. When I hit bumps or potholes with this bike(I'm in northwestern PA, it happens), it's like the front end on an f250 - f350 kind of stiff. It even skips and I need to hold on. I'm hoping to figure out what the stock settings are, maybe return to there to have a place to start. I've worked on my own bikes for a long time and never needed to touch front fork settings, so bear with any stupid questions. I'm still trying to figure out how many clicks of adjustment it has so I know how many is enough to make a difference. Just soaking in all the info I can. I'd hate to just start taking clicks out of the front without some sort of educated guess as to where I'm going with it. Thanks a lot in advance for any guidance

I've seen a lot in regard to matching the suspension settings to the rider. I'm probably in the area of 210-220lbs in my riding gear & I do not track this bike. It is for commuting on garbage roads & spirited riding on the weekends
 

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Stock 8 clicks. Total of 16 I believe Turns for compression same also. I went down to 3 to 4 softer side on rebound an compression. That’s the least of the evils for me. Better ride on crappy roads. Feel good on highway to me
 

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Springs have a sweet spot where they like to work. This is why you set the sag on the suspension. To make sure you are using the spring within its operating window. If you can't get the sag, the spring doesn't suit you. So this is the first step. Adjust the preload until you get the right sag. I use 30% of total travel on the street. If I was to do a track bike, I would probably use 20%. Note percentage of total travel not mm. Another thing to note is that when you set up one end of the bike, it may throw out the other. Think of this as refining or fine tuning. And you may not be about to get exactly 30%.
Next step is dampening. Dampening is about the speed the fork moves. Oil moving through the stack. Compression damping controls the speed the fork compresses. With a hard hit like you described I may reduce a click or two. But that would depend on how much it drives under brakes. Remember you need to have support on the front end. You will have to feel this.
Rebound is about how fast the fork returns. Can feel like harshness and is normally what I adjust when the bike is too stiff. I normally slow it down. If rebound is too fast the suspension will buck you. Too slow and it will wallow. Rebound out will cause cupping of the tyre (so I am told) but I have never really cared about this as tyres are consumable.
If you can't get the dampening right then you need to adjust the oil weight, viscosity.
So as long as the bike tracks nicely, doesn't understeer or oversteer I am generally happy.
Simple as. But it is a feel thing. Hope this helps.
 

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The stock rear shock is crap doesn’t matter how much you play with the rebound it will do nothing..
With the front end try backing out rebound and compression all the way out and go from there.
Get the rebound set to what you think is best first then tweek compression.
Like rim72 said the best thing is to set sag first but if you want a quick fix just do rebound and comp..
 

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So my approach is ... Set the rider sag at 35mm front and rear. you will most likely have too little rear staic sag and too much front static sag at your riding weight but it's stock suspension so ...
The rear is overly compression damped and under rebound damped, imho. I would always have some rear static sag around 6mm even if that compromises the rider sag numbers.
Then ride the bike for 30 minutes set at stock settings, to warm it all up, front rebound 8 out and comp 2 turns out. Rear is 1turn out.
I then set the front rebound to just go into a second stroke and the rear rebound not to go into a second stroke when bounced. However remember we only have low speed comp' so maybe don't bounce with too much vigour.
Then I ride again set set compression, by feel, over known roads.

FWIW mine is :-
rebound 3 clicks out and 2.5 turns out compression and front rider sag 35mm (static is 22mm)
Rear is ramp 5 and rebound 1/4 turn out rider sag is 35 (static 5mm)
tyres are 38psi cold front and rear (Pilot Powers)

Currently at 8500 miles.

BUT, we are all different weights, riding styles, tyres (and pressures) and mileage on suspension parts etc ...

Its worth watching Dave Moss, a lot, and self educating as then you can adjust further as things age.

For the price, even in the UK, it's a bargain. With associated comprimises.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks very much to all for the input. I hope to have time this weekend to figure out some adjustments. I appreciate the help
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I may have found some of the issue just in the current settings. Checked with my service manual and none of the current owners settings were as stock recommended. You can even see the difference in the spring adjusters with the naked eye once I looked at it.

-Spring Adjusters : recommend A gap of .390"
Left fork was @ .280", Right was @ .340"

-Damping Adjusters : recommend 8 clicks from stiffest . Both were @ 4 clicks from stiffest setting.

-Lower damping force Adjusters: recommend 2 turns from stiffest setting. Left fork was @ 1 turn from max and right fork was @ 1.25 turns from max.
 

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Well the preload adjusters should be even really and set to your weight for the required sag.

The rebound at 4 is about right, i like mine at 3 to stop the pogoing into a second stroke of any substance.

The compression is purely a feel adjustment really. I would say put both at 2 1/2 turns out and try. it's not that unusual for them to be slightly different to get the preferred rider feel/comfort.

How was the shocker?
 

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Checked with my service manual and none of the current owners settings were as stock recommended.
So put it back to stock settings and go from there. Agree with Suzufasti that it all needs to be even.
A mechanic I used to deal with made a lot of money (and upset a few people) by putting suspension back to standard and handing out our business cards to the riding school. Point I am making is that people mucking up suspension is more common than you would think. There is no magic with suspension (it is simple) but it is a feel thing.
 
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