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Suspension Setup Help

Discussion in 'Bling and Appearance' started by stewy, Oct 18, 2006.

  1. ok guys, went to test out my theory that the bikes suspension is too hard for my liking (if there is such a thing as too hard). :?

    Decided there aren't many better roads then the spur (racetrack type surface, ie nice and smooth no bumps etc.) so off i go and wow she corners like she is on rails..... felt very condifent with cornering up there no problem, not even a arse clitching moment :shock: .....so thought i would now test it on a less then perfect piece of road, so headed up chum creek and out that direction (although nice, bumpy it's bumpy in places and losts of change of road surfaces) and as such noticed how much less confident i felt on the bike :( (even in a straight line, in some rough patches) also espically where there are ripples leading into the corners or through themthis was also quite unsettling...... so now the question is who :) can help me get the suspension setup correctly for me as i am finding it too stiff?

    Before all the wise cracks come in, saying either just put up with it, or soften it up, i have no idea what to soften to get the results i want :mad: , so if anyone has some time to help me set this up it would be greatly appreciated

    Or any feedback on what to adjust, and in which order..... would also be a a good start

    cheers stewy
  2. Depending upon the rear shock type, you may be able to adjust the pre-load up or down to your liking, however not all shocks can do this.

    Your best bet is to pick up the service manual, that should describe how to adjust the shock.

    If you cannot adjust the shock pre-load, the only way is to purchase a new shock, suitable for the bike, which can be adjusted.

    Good luck with adjusting the shock.
  3. Additionally, if you would like some help with fine-tuning it, feel free to bring it around to my house, and we'll try to set it up right for you.
  4. cheers stew

    Will have a read though that link first and check the bike to see how it compares.

    Thanks for the offer

    Cheers stewy
  5. yeah i want to adjust my settings but not exactly sure. ive tweaked things a little but i bought it a year old and the previous owner played with it. So i think i might try and put it back to the original settings - just got to make sure im doing things right.
  6. So after a full day in the saddle after my adjustments, how'd it go stewy?
  7. Stew..... wow, it's really hard to believe it's the same bike......

    For most of the day didn't get much of a chance to really to give it a real crack but there where a couple of times, when the group spaced out a bit, and had a chance to really open her up, and see just how well the changes were working, and i am loving them..... bikes feels sooo nice and stable during cornering, as opposed to how it used to ride.

    Really my biggest issue is i constantly found myself yesterday was i kept having to re-adjust my lines mid corner (ie stand it back up and let it run a bit wider as i was finding i was turning in to early, on alot of corners), as i asume i had adjusted my style to ride the bike as it was previously and used quite an early turn in point, just to get the thing around the corner. Am really looking forward to riding it for a couple of weeks and just

    All in all i can't thankyou enough, for the time you spent with me hepling set it up on saturday..... this bike has gone from something i was seriously thinking about selling a.s.a.p. and was really disappointed with and really and i guess to a certain point, didn't look forward to heading out the twisties (as it was a real nerve unsettling experience), to a bike (only after one day) that i am loving the experience of riding again and now remember why i loved it sooo much.

    Once again thats so much for all your help, and looking forward to catching up (not on the bike ;) ) for a ride.
  8. Nice one Cathar, Stewy was pretty down about the Thundercat's handling.

    Glad you lads got it sorted out good and proper - and it goes to show others how much of a difference a bit of attention to the mysterious knobs and dials on the suspension can make.
  9. :grin: :grin:

    Great to hear!

    As I said to you on Saturday after looking at it, it was hard to believe that the guy you bought it off was actually doing track-days on it, it was so dangerously set up. Seriously, the way it was set up when you brought it around, while not quite as bad as you could possibly set the bike up, was still terrible.

    Preloads were set to be nose-high/tail-down, making cornering turn-in a total chore. Front compression was way too hard, while front rebound was way too soft, meaning that any bumps mid corner would've been causing the forks to top out, losing all real road holding ability.

    Conversely the rear pre-load was too soft, with compression too soft and the rebound set way too hard. The rear was just packing itself down, making corner entries sluggish, and the ride would've been very hard from the rear as the suspension would've been bottoming out at the end of its stroke with any decent bump or series of smaller bumps. It would've been running even wider the moment you put any power down on corner exit as well.

    Having the bike allow you to do late turn-in's is exactly what you want. You would've been turning in way too early as well just because you didn't trust the bike to turn in when you wanted it to. Running off the inside of corners is exactly what you want because this means that the bike is now turning like it should, it's just that you need to unlearn the habits you've developed from dealing with the crap suspension setup.

    I set the compression damping to be a fraction stiff (but still a little softer than I use on my own bike) because I believe that as you regain confidence and pick up the pace you'll grow into the way I've set it up for sporty road riding. If it is too stiff and bumpy for you, always remember that there's two things you can do about it.

    1) If the road really is quite bumpy, then do your best to hold on loosely, rather than tight. "Drape" yourself on the bike and your arms should be relaxed enough that you can do the chicken dance with your elbows even over the worst of bumps. If you're tensing up, it'll make the feedback of the bumps even worse, and make the bike handle even worse. You can't dial out every bump/bump-series, but as a rider you can do a lot to help the bike by relaxing on the bike on bumpy roads, rather than holding on tight.

    2) If after being relaxed doesn't work, then feel free to drop back the compression damping on the front by 1 click, and the compression on the rear by 1 click. If that's still too stiff, then drop both the compression and rebound, front and rear, by 1 further click each. If you're adjusting it by more than that then let me know and we'll try to fix it to better suit your needs.

    I'm just glad that I could help to make the bike safer for you. As it was, it was borderline dangerous. Am happy that you now have a "new bike" that you like. :cool:
  10. Suspension setup makes a huge difference to how your bike handles, turns and stability, I had heaps of issues with my fireblade I am 100Kg geared up and the front end was just too soft, I ended up taking it to a suspension Guru and having heavier W/P springs fitted and getting the front revalved and got a W/P shock on the rear then spent a bit of time setting it up and man this thing is a different bike to ride, love it now so my recommendation if you can afford it, it makes a world of difference
  11. stewy's maybe 80kgs, all geared up, and we were able to dial in the pre-loads to suit his weight well within the total adjustment ranges of the bike. In my mind, the damping adjustments on the YZF600 were also more than adequate to cover his needs for sporty road riding and even track riding.

    Where different valving in the suspension might help stewy over the YZF600's stock suspension is when/if he's riding regularly at >9/10ths at track days and the like.

    What would've helped your own scenario most would've been just getting the correct rated springs installed. Unless there's something intrinsically wrong with the stock damping valves, many sports bikes made in the last 15 years can have their stock damping adjusters dialled in well enough for all but the fastest track riding. Even then, modifying the fork-oil weight may be enough to address issues without resorting to re-valving.
  12. well your laughing then, the thing with the 2000-2001 fireblade the front end was way to soft standard & probably designed around a 60Kg Japanese jockey not a 100Kg Aussie and the back shock was fairly average, you are obviously ok with the R6 but my fireblade was just crap compared with how it handles now
  13. Hey. Not saying that there aren't exceptions. My 2000 R1 required the rear to be resprung and revalved to stop the rear tyre from sliding and spinning up mid-corner on even the gentlest throttle applications at the track. It was adjusted as far as it could go, and it was still way too soft. My fork springs were also too soft and I figured that since I was getting the rear spring and valves done, as well as the fork springs, then I may as well get the front valves done as well and be done with it. My R1 is now a different bike as well, and way better than it was.

    In stewy's case though, I just don't see him needing to go to such lengths. The stock bike's springs and damping rates appear adequate.
  14. thats pretty much the same as me I just thought as they were doing the front springs I might as well get the valves done at the same time, dont know about the R6 but it seems from talking to other sports bike riders the bikes standard suspension is too soft (especially for track) its the Japanese jockey effect, sounds like Stewy isnt to heavy but for a fat bastard like me there really was no other (cheaper) option.
    that said my bike now handles superbly and I couldnt be happier.
  15. stewy doesn't have an R6. He has a mid/late-90's YZF-600R (Thundercat).
  16. and wouldn't trade her for the world NOW!!!! :grin: :LOL: well yuo know :oops: :p :LOL:
  17. i just stumbled on this thread after having trouble getting through to netrider over the past few weeks (but thats a whole other topic) - good to see you got things sorted stew with the help of a suspension guru - cathar top work.
    Being a fellow tcat rider i find the standard settings work pretty well on the road - however you need to firm things up (especially the front) for track days as it tends to dive under brakes, and "see-saw" a bit under hard accelaration. the general consensus from what i've read is that (for the average rider weight) the front spring is too soft and the rear is too stiff - however there is enough preload adjustment available in both to overcome the problem.
    After setting up my bike for the track i was too lazy to re-adjust it for the road - BIG mistake as i later went on a fast road ride and felt like i was riding a bucking horse every time i hit the slightest bump. Very unsettling - especially to the aggots. :shock:
    My advice is that you need two setups - road and track - and there is no in between. if you want to do track days send me a PM as i have a good pdf from "performance bikes" on suspension setup for the cat at track days.
    by the way, its a top bike in my opinion. get you knee down at the track no worries and carve up the km's on the road in comfort - once you unlock the suspension secrets.