Author Topic: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions  (Read 451 times)

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Offline JP

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2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« on: April 08, 2019, 06:35:28 pm »
Am in the process of lowering the bike, short inseam the reason.  Decided to go with the adjustable links (soupys).   
1. aired up the tires to spec, set a level on the luggage plate and shimmed to level.   Then removed the stock links and installed
the adjustable link at stock height. 
My thoughts  are to drop the front triple tree down the fork a specified amount, the adjust the lower kinks to
level.   

So question 1, is the ratio of drop from front to rear 1:1, .5:1 ??? 

It there a know drop the gets the bike down a provided the best geometry for handing?

JP :character0029


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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2019, 06:59:14 pm »
QUESTION:
do you currently have handlebar riser blocks installed?

if not, you will not be able to drop the front enough to make any difference, as the top of the fork tube will come into contact with the backside of the handle bar casting, preventing any real lowering effect without causing that upright mount to fracture; Thee fork top cannot contact the bar casting what so ever.

Also, lowering the forks over 1" gets you close to having contact with items at the front fender...
so use caution;
the people lowering are nut using any "ratio", or seeking a "level" using a spirit level.... they are simply dropping the bike till it's more "comfey"

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Offline JP

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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2019, 07:27:36 pm »
Yes, have risers on my desk, they go on tomorrow.
The goal was to lower the bike as much as possible with out changing the general position, front to back.

Also, when adjusting the front down, what is the best plan for that?   Thanks

JP

Offline Chuck

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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2019, 12:32:16 am »
Yes, have risers on my desk, they go on tomorrow.
The goal was to lower the bike as much as possible with out changing the general position, front to back.

Also, when adjusting the front down, what is the best plan for that?   Thanks

JP

When I installed the T-Rex ~1 1/2" lowering links, I ended up raising the fork tubes 1" in the triple tree clamps. The end result was ride performance that was the same as before. Note: I live in Michigan... we don't have rideable curves here. Any good corner intersects a gravel road and is covered in rocks. I'm a fairly tame example of a rider.

I have had no issues with the front fender impacting anything.

Some things I learned:
1) Get the proper torque wrench that is in the range described in the manual for the fork clamp bolts.

2) Plan on removing the plastics and front wheel. There's not a lot of room to spin a wrench up in there and removing the wheel lets you adjust each tube independently.

3) For the love of all that is holy... do not over-tighten the clamp bolts. It's really easy to do going back on forth to each bolt. Do it a couple of times and call it torqued. There has to be a video out there on the correct way to do this.

4) The stock kawa bolts are made of alumin(i)um foil. Extracting them is not fun. If you're lucky, like me, you won't permanently squish the fork tubes. Then again, this may be why the bolts were so soft.

5) Important: Do a total readjustment of all suspension settings (specially sag) front and rear.

You might also want to look into shortening the stock side stand, or purchasing an adjustable one (I took this route). Mine was way too vertical for my liking with the stock stand after the lowering.

Hope my rambling helps,
Chuck

2016 ZG1400 Black
Corbin seat; V&H CS One exhaust; T-Rex lowering links, forks raised 1"; Murph's risers, wedges, fender extender and rear hugger; Bunch 'o RAM mounts

Offline JP

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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2019, 12:18:16 pm »
Chuck, thanks for the tips, really appreciated.

I do have the plastics off up to the headlamp cowling.  Removed the horn/shield plate.
Have a clear view of the lower bolts and a full service manual, though it does leave a fair amount of grey area.
Had planned on removing the handle bars complete, the measure drop. 

As well, have a t-rex adjustable kick stand mounted, works good.  Initially I went with a fixed, 3 slot dog bone link and set to center hole,
the lowest position possible.  Yes the bike was nice and low, the shock assy dragged on the lift ramp and front end handling
was heavy and unbalanced, no go on Plan A.   So Plan B, level and adjust.

Initially I was going set a to set a flat jack on the lower frame at its current height, then lower.  Of course there is no lower frame since the motor is
hanging off the frame.   Do you know does the motor have rubber mounts or no?  Looking for a jack point.

Thx JP

As I grew up in rural MN, all to familiar with gravel!
Florida has other hazards however, mostly human related.

Offline Red Fox

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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2019, 03:51:47 pm »
Good input above. 

I lowered my front by 0.6 inches to get quicker handling while leaving the rear at original height.  Kept stock rear tire size and immediately liked the quicker steering.  No fender impact over speed bumps and the sidestand worked without any sweat.  If I had it to do over again I'd lower the front by 0.8 inches. 

Only suggestion is loosening the bolts holding the tubes, use 6 point sockets rather than 12 point.  These bolts are on very tight from the factory in hard to access quarters, don't want to round them off...
TryCities, WA.    2011  C-14, silver; 53,000 miles.

Offline JP

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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2019, 07:20:01 pm »
Red Fox, Duly noted on the 6 point. Thank You..

Will reinstall the center stand, strap down the rear wheel on the lift, loosen the clamps, and work the forks up
to a measure of .8" to 1.0" max.     


Thx JP   

Offline gsun

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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2019, 12:45:03 am »
I hung the bike from the ceiling when I raised my forks. You hit a point and the bike weight pushes it down fast. It was hard getting it back up when it went down too far thus the rope.
I lowered the rear 1.5" and the front almost an inch. Works great - no problem hitting the fender. The only thing is the centre stand. I have to run up on plywood to do that. I carry small pieces when I go on the road. Two layers of 3/4" staggered in a step. But then the shortened side stand is an issue so I also put a 3/4" piece below that. Just kick it under when up on the blocks.

Offline JP

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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #8 on: April 12, 2019, 04:43:06 pm »
That was my concern,  I did have an option to use a forklift and a strap.   As it worked out
strapped the rear tire down to the lift base,  while on the center stand, to lift the front tire.
Reached around an pulled the top cowling and it dropped a good amount, a little , and a tad,
ended up at .96 inch drop.    That concluded the drop, torqueing the fork bolts was a tight fit.
Just installed a power commander v and reassembling.   

Thanks for every ones help, really appreciated.  JP

Offline connie_rider

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Re: 2013 Concours 14, Lowering the suspension questions
« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2019, 11:30:04 pm »
JP, if your mesuring from the ground to your seat or frame, your dimensions are incorrect.
Your measuring seat height, not actual drop.

In order to know how much you actually lowered the rear, you have to measure from axle center to bike frame with the bike on the center stand. {wheel off the ground}.
Do this with stock links and then after adjusting the Soupy's longer. {NOTE: "longer" lowers the bike}.
The difference in the 2 measurement's will give you your actual drop.

The reason is {because of frame geometry} the bike will probably sag more after the suspension is lowered.

IMPORTANT: After you set your drop, you need to reset your sag (and damping) for a better ride.
                      Video's are available on YouTube to show you how to set the sag/damping.

Ride safe, Ted
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