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Setting up my suspension

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by Simon Lockington, Jul 3, 2010.

  1. Gidday guys,
    Going down the Putty Road last week it occured to me the B-King had some suspension woes, it seemed to crash over bumps rather than absorb them, it felt like the suspension was just too stiff.

    I studied up all the suspension guides I could find on the net and having had technical hobbies before where I didn't seek out, or heed, expert advice early enough and it's cost me money, time and angst. This time I decided to get the advice first up.

    I went out to Teknik suspension in Penrith on Saturday morning and the guys got to work assessing the B-King.

    For those not up with the play on the process, they measure the:
    - unladen total travel of the suspension (ie lift the bike up).
    - the amount the suspension compresses when the bike is standing by itself (ie not on the stand, but vertical with no rider). This is static sag.
    - the amount the suspension compresses when the rider is on it. This is rider sag.

    It looks like the B-King is pretty 'under sprung' straight off the show room floor. For static sag, the big fella had 26mm in the rear and 38 up front... A more 'normal' figure for say a sports bike, is apparently 15 in the rear and around 25ish in the front.

    The bike had the standard amount of preload on it, so the guys wound in as much fork preload as the bike could take and the front static sag value went to 30.

    When I jumped on the bike so they could measure the rider sag, the values were 40mm on front and 50mm on back.

    The guys then removed the rear shock so they could adjust the preload easier, it took them all of about 3 minutes to remove the shock. They wound in the preload until there was about 3-4mm left to go then refit the shock.

    Afterwards the rear static sag had gone from 26 to 14mm and the rear rider sag was no 34 (from 40).

    The set the dampening and rebound to a half way setting and told me to go ride.

    Immediately I noticed less dive under braking and a bit more poise when hitting bumps. I backed off the compression and rebound settings a couple more clicks and it seemed to get better still. I'll continue to play with it.

    The evaluation of the B-King was the rear setup was thought to be OK and didnt really need any changing.

    The front springs however are very soft. I'm 75kg without gear on, so hardly a candidate for Jenny Craig and still the front springs are a bit inadequate.

    The solution to this is apparently rebuilding the front with heavier springs and a revalving kit which I may end up doing, but for the time being I'm going to continue experimenting witht he dampening and rebound settings for a while yet.

    I was really impressed with the Teknik guys, all this was done in about 30-45 mins and cost me $40, a bargain for the information and improvement in handling I got.

    In order to test it out I figured well I'd already ridden to Penrith from Collaroy so I might as well whip to Bathurst for lunch, so I did :). Goddamn it was cold though, won't be in a hurry to ride there again until the temperature comes up!

    Anyway, just thought I'd share this experience with you as I know a lot of guys don't bother with adjusting their suspension and just deal iwth it 'as is', but a little time and effort looks like it can really pay off here.

  2. I keep meaning to sort my suspension setup out one day... $40 sounds like an awesome deal though.. it would probably cost that much in beers to get 2 non-specialist mates around - and a hell of a lot more time messing around!

    I wonder if I can get it sorted that cheaply here in Melbourne?
  3. go see izzy @ suspensions R us
  4. Thanks for the heads up

    $40 great value

    So they tell you how it all works?? Mainly do touring, so will be able to adjust to luggage as well??
  5. The guys were happy to answer my questions and things like that, they'll be able to set your bike up for the luggage etc, just make sure you take your luggage with you so they can get an idea of how much everything weighs.
  6. Gidday guys,
    As a bit of an update I spent a while going up and down one of my favourite bits of road here in Sydney (McCarrs Creek Road/Church Point etc). Unfortuatenly it's a pretty rough stretch which works the suspension pretty hard, but I think I now have some settings that I'm happy with. I've got a lot less dampening and compression than perhaps is normal, but I like the way the bike now handles.

    Front compression about 13 clicks out from hard, rebound about 11.
    Rear compression about 2.75 turns out from hard, rebound the same.

    Where the bike used to bounce and skitter over the bumps it now does a decent job of soaking them up and feels a lot more confidence inspiring.

  7. McCarrs Ck Rd sorts out the suspension, plenty of undulations running across it - did you get into West Head?? That smooth surface would be great with some well sorted suspension

    Have got to get my shock repaired as it's leaking, will see if they know about sorting the suspension out, otherwise head out there with luggage on