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Getting suspension adjusted

Discussion in 'Maintenance and Servicing' started by cgus, Sep 12, 2016.

  1. hey all, ive been hearing alot about setting your bikes suspension up properly, so i thought i would look into it.

    im im melbourne SE suburbs.
    ive got a 2013 zx6 so theres a few adjustments on it.
    i would like to just get someone who knows what theyre doing to set it up for my preferance and weight.
    but all i can find is full packages with new springs aswell.
    i do like taking it up the dandy ranges whenever i can and i suppose im a pretty spirited rider but i dont do track or anything.

    so is there anywhere i can just get it tweaked standard suspension without costing too much?

  2. Can help you much in regard to specific shops but most places that can upgrade your suspension should also offer setup as a separate service. Im sure someone here will pipe up soon but you could also ring around and see who offers what.
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  3. Hey mate, whoever services your bike should be able to help you set up your suspension. The main thing is making sure the springs on your shock and in your forks are correct for your weight. If you are kind of average size they should be fine. Setting the sag is next and the thing that you will need help with (best to google it... too much to explain in one post!) if i find a decent link I'll post it.

    But if your springs are fine for your weight your mechanic probably wouldn't charge you to help you set up sag, it doesnt take long and is pretty easy to do but is a 2 man job. Once that is done, all the other adjustments are kind of down to personal preference. You need to get a bit of understanding of what they do then go and ride and tweak. Start with the recommended settings for your bike and go from there. If your bike has heaps of klms on it (like maybe over 30000klms) you may want to think about getting your shocks serviced otherwise you should be able to get what you want out of whats already stock on your zx6 (unless you're really light/ heavy) It can be a bit confusing when you first start to try and understand all the various adjustments but by learning what they do and tweaking you will bond with your bike! and its also fun to work on it to get it how you like. Once you understand it you will change the compression/ rebound etc for different riding. So my advice would be, dont be afraid, do some research, dive in, make notes and if you mess up just put everything back to where you started.
  4. thanks. i guess ill look into it more and maybe get a mate to help set up the sag and go from there
  5. Have you tried tweaking the settings yourself ?
    Any new toy I get using the owners manual I bring all the settings back to 'factory' standard
    then over a few days riding both commute and playing I slowly play with the settings, it takes a few goes but you soon work out what suites you best.

    My current ride FJR1300 , which I've only had for about a month now come with the comment "it handles like a big brick which is why I never rode it much! "
    The whole suspension was set up rock hard [ max rebound/ dampening on everything ]
    I even commented to the other half after riding it home the 1st day and I quote " F##k that suspension is hard ! "
    Moving it all back to Standard improved the ride heaps and the rear has stayed std so far but the front has needed more tweeking and still NQR but getting close
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  6. I just had my RVF400 forks rebuilt by ProMecha in Mulgrave. I am yet to re-install them onto the bike but Peter is a very knowledgeable bloke that explained the different functions of the suspension and how I can set it up correctly for myself.

    Probably worth taking the bike into him and telling him what you would like to achieve with yor setup so that he can point you in the right direction.
  7. I've spent the last few days researching and learning about suspension setup and have just about got my 2003 gsxr600 in a good place.
    I weigh 90 kg and I could use a different front spring but my sag isn't too far out and I've achieved a good feel.
    I bought the bike maybe 2 months ago off my bro in law and he weighs about 100kg and he never touched the settings in the 6 years he owned it.
    The rear settings weren't bad but the front preload was all the way out....comp was all out and damp all the way in. These settings had the front feeling unsettled on any uneven surface and would push wide on some corners. With the settings tweaked more in my favour now it's a completely different bike and it costs nothing. If you don't want to do it yourself it Probs costs 50 bucks or so and will be the best money a new rider can spend on their new ride.
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  8. I had mine adjusted by a guy in western Sydney - thanks to a icemakericemaker for a great recommendation. it now handles like a different bike and the difference is remarkable. it is money well spent. I would recommend you go see a suspension specialist and don't just get your dealer to do it as a specialist does nothing but suspension so you will get it dialled in exactly the way you want it.
  9. Depending on your weight + pillion if you regularly carry one you may not have to do anything more than some simple adjustments.
    Static sag (Suspension compression of the bike only, sag (Suspension compression with normal rider + pillion weight.)

    Bikes 3 years old so it could definitely use some fresh oil up front and your rear shock re gassed.
  10. #12 AJV80, Sep 27, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2016
    If you aren't confident working on your bike I'd recommend having someone show you how to do it first, cant help you out with a particular place. If you are confident here are some great video's on what you need to do should you want to have a crack at it yourself. Setting your sag is relatively easy to do and something most people shouldn't find too difficult. If you are of average weight and moderate riding ability you should be able to adjust things and get it pretty close to where you need to be. By having a go at it yourself you will better understand how it works and be able to further tweak and fine tune settings down the track to get exactly what you want out of the bike. Be clear what you want done if you go to a specialist, often when you go to a suspension specialist they immediately try to upsell you on expensive suspension and recommend you replace springs without even seeing how close they can get your fully adjustable suspension setup first. Not all suspension places are like that and many are really good but just keep that in mind.

    Dave Moss and Keith Code are both great guys that explain things in a very clear simple way, Dave is a suspension specialist and an absolute genius at his craft. Both videos are very informative and easy to follow. Dave always answers his comments on Youtube so if there is anything you are unsure of just ask him. The guy is so good that you could probably tell him what make and year bike you have along with your weight, and then give you a good baseline setting off the top of his head.

    What you will need is atleast one other person to help you, some basic tools (sockets, screwdriver), a tape measure, should rear preload need adjusting you may also need some C spanners depending on your bikes rear shock. C spanners can be purchased from bike shops or eBay and a relatively inexpensive, I think i paid $15 for mine.

    Its quite simple to do yourself and you'll also save some money, hope this helps.

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  11. Getting your suspension looked at on your bike isn't a luxury and certainly not only for the spirited and track riders.

    It's appalling in Oz that anyone can drop into a bike shop, buy a bike and ride it away without anyone saying anything about the suspension settings. There may be a few shops that will do something about it but most won't unless you ask.

    Your new bike or new/second hand bike can be a death trap or an absolute joy to ride.

    The difference can be absolutely huge on the same bike before and after getting the suspension sorted.

    I read somewhere many years ago that a bikes suspension has only one job and that is to keep the wheels on the road.

    The two best examples I have -

    I bought a brand new Honda 1100XX Super Blackbird back in 2005. I'm not the lightest bloke around but I could bottom out the front end under moderate braking.
    That doesn't sound too bad except when you hit another bump with it bottomed out.

    Honda back in the day provided no adjustment to the front end so I ended up replacing the front springs with something heavier and replaced the fork oil with a lighter oil. That fixed the front end and then I completely replaced the rear shock with something much heavier that I could gas unlike the stock showa.

    All through this exercise my brother queried why I was doing all I had done as he just couldn't see the point.

    Some time later my brother also bought a blackbird and we were riding down the Princess Hwy on our way to Philip Island when he pulled up next to me to get me to stop. He was pissed as his bike was a real handful and he couldn't believe I wasn't having the same trouble he was having. I knew what the problem was but just made the suggestion that we swap bikes for a few K's.

    Yes it was only a few K's when we swapped back. His comment was that my bike wasn't doing anything that his had been doing like wallowing around every turn. He wanted to know all about suspension after that.

    How do you know your suspension is setup properly?

    That's when you go out for a ride and never think about it

    That's when you're in another world deep into your favourite twisties and you can feel exactly what the front end is doing.

    That's when you get a stickier set of tyres.

    I toasted a set of Shinko 003's one year going from Brisbane to Philip Is. Had a ball.

    Everyone should get a set of sticky tyres at least once but they won't do any good if your suspension isn't setup any good.
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