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Suspension upgrade opinions.

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by Benno82, Jul 25, 2007.

  1. Hi there, i'm looking at getting my suspension upgraded on my 03 zx9r.

    I've got a few quotes and i have been given slightly differant answers. I'm on a budget and dont want to spend more than $800 on the front forks. I'm looking at getting heavier springs to suit my weight and or revalved compression and dampening. Have been told that the rear is fine, happy with it so far.

    Now springs should be around 500-600 for ohlins, if i get the valves done as well that's another 500 bucks. Now my question is will the springs be sufficent and run well on stock valves? or should i shell out the rest and get valve's done while i'm at it? Which will give the more noticable gain?

    Bike is to be used for weekend twisty riding and eventually track days.
  2. From memory, you can get forks AND shock revalved, regassed, resprung and set up for you for under a grand using racetech or k-tech stuff.

    I don't know why you'd buy an Ohlins spring, it's just a spring and nobody can see your gold shit if it's inside the fork. Get cheaper stuff and an ohlins sticker.

    I did $600 of work to the shock and forks of my old hornet 900, including new springs and a shock rebuild, it made a big difference to the bike's handling and I'd recommend it thoroughly. If you're gonna chuck money at the forks, do the shock too.

    Phil Tainton Racing
  3. I am sending my suspension to get reworked (valves springs etc) at a place called Rod sharp cycle works. Its run by obviously Rod Sharp that is a Suspension Guru throughout Motorcycling.
    Got quoted a great price to get everything done. Alot less then promecha and ASR were quoting me.

    Not sure if i can put his detail on here(terms and conditions etc) So send me a PM if u need his details.
  4. I can tell you who NOT to go to.

    There are lots of suspension companies. As for Ohlins springs just being springs, then gold valves are just valves....It comes down to budget, if you have a small one (budget that is, no personal stuff here), pick the best of everything that you can afford. I'd recommend doing valves AND springs, seems pointless as they've got the guts of the forks on the table to just replace one part.

    After a few years, the oil will be gunky, the springs weaker and the valves a compromise. A rework will stun you.
  5. Thanks for the replies, natta if you can pm me that shop that would be great as i don't have 20 posts yet.
  6. Don't buy the Ohlins springs. You can get as good springs for $150 (Progressive Suspension in guildford, but others do them as well). that will bring you back within budget.

    but I really do have to ask why? The ZX9 wouldn't be set up for small people and should have a good range of damping adjustment.

    If you are particularly heavy then you may need some heavier springs and heavier weight oil, but I'd be suprised if you needed a revalve.

    I could be wrong as I don't have model specific information.

    Be wary of going automatically stiffer on springs just because of an assumption. Someone has put stiffer, progressively wound springs in my bike sometime in it's history and it's way too stiff. It get unsettled over bumps and bumping up the damping means it doesn't work properly. I've ridden softly spring bike and they are quicker A-B in the real world.

    So, unless you have a specific problem, leave it alone as these forks wouldn't have been low spec items.
  7. You can always improve things. Suspension from the manufacturer is always a compromise and built down to a price. The ZX was never a hyper sports and so didn't get the daily updates from the factory. That's not to say it isn't good, just that any bike will benefit from suspension work, even if it's just an oil change/set and proper setup. A bike with a few k's on it even more so.
  8. The Zx9 was the top-range sportsbike at Kwaka of its day. It's got a billion different adjustable tweakers on the front and rear. It was built to be good stuff.
  9. You can have a zillion and 2 clickers, it doesn't imply qaulity. All mass produced shocks and forks are built down to a price. Probably the only ones that aren't are the top quality items found on the top of the range bikes.

    I maintain that *any* bike will benefit from a little bit of work.
  10. Agreed Mister Jones, I'm merely challenging your assertation that it wasn't a hyper-sports and didn't get any factory love.
  11. anyone know much about Hagon shocks?
  12. I'm with Loz in that the ZX9 had pretty good suspension.

    I agree that fresh oil will do it good, but unless you have run out of adjustment or it has a specific problem leave it alone.

    Gold valves are for bikes that don't have a good range of damping adjustment from the factory.

    throwing a heavier spring and a set of gold valves on as an assumed improvement will likely make things worse. The OP very much reads like it was an assumption that the work was needed rather than he was trying to solve a specific problem.
  13. I stand corrected my Dear Mr Loz, the Lord of Zedexness.

    Can we discuss spares prices now?
  14. Only if you can present a Kawasaki representative with excess limbs for me to rend asunder.
  15. The stock front springs are way too soft standard. I've been told they are also a 'progressive spring'. They are plush and cause the front to wallow and sink in corners. The bike has an added 10mm of shims to the rear which will also be putting more weight on the front.

    I'm not ultra heavy 75kgs and the front preload is nearly all the way in.

    I've settled on springs to suit my weight and gold valves for compression only.