Author Topic: Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?  (Read 3169 times)

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Offline Red

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Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?
« on: April 20, 2012, 07:03:51 pm »
I just bought a 2005 zg1000. I love it already. I plan to take it from Portland down to Yosemite this summer. What I'm trying to figure out is how to dial in the suspension. The person I bought it from was much smaller than me and the suspension feel a little soft. Should I adjust the pre load or are there other adjustments to make? Any tips would be great. Thanks.

Offline erikj

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Re: Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2012, 08:19:14 pm »
You could try to reed my thread in the tire section, Commander II first ride, there i have listed my set up and this is pretty much the recommended  settings from Kawasaki.

From this basic you can make your own  settings and always  have reference to go back to.

The best preload setting in the front is when you feel the steering is complete neutral when you go in the turns and you can actually steer the bike with the throttle.

In the back the preload is mostly for adjusting for bigger loads or two up, max. is 50 psi or you can blow the  seal in the damper.

Have a good ride
Erik
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Offline Alekkas

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Re: Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2012, 11:43:52 pm »
I am new to the bike so this is certainly no expert advice.  However, I have had good results adjusting the ride.  Mine was way too soft as well  Looked at the front preload and it was at the softest ... All the way out.  Tightened it up a few notches and rode for a while.  Wanted it tighter and went all the way in to the last mark.  It is still supple when riding, but less spongey.   I like it.

On the rear, turns out the po had little or no air.  Settled in at 25 lbs.  Have read this simply adjusts height and not really ride.  Don't know for sure, but the ride felt similar.  Biggest effect on rear is the dampening.  Started at the softest.  Stiffened it up one notch and all, while noticeably stiffer, still good on bumps one or two up.  Any stiffer and it looses smoothnes for my riding style.

In the end, keep with incremental change until you find what works best for you.

Hope this helps.  By reading the owners manual section, it dialed in a lot better for me than where it was.
There are also people here that have had good results with thicker fork oil and, of course, spending money on springs and shocks.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2012, 11:52:33 pm by Alekkas »
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Offline Dukedinner

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Re: Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2012, 11:49:17 pm »
The search function takes you to quite a few threads on suspension settings..by guys here who really know their stuff. Based on their advice, I went front pre-load with two lines showing on the adjusters on the front, and 40-50 psi in the rear shock. BIG improvement. Just my two cents. I am 6'0 215lbs
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Offline mdr

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Re: Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2012, 03:10:34 pm »
No expert, but I've learned lots over the years.  Still lots to learn!

First thing is to make sure it's working right.  Change the fluids, make sure it's not binding, that sort of thing.  Just fixing these things can make a world of difference without touching an adjustment or swapping for 'performance parts'.

Next, home work.  It's not difficult if you approach it methodically, but if you don't you'll just screw it up worse ;)

Read the article in Sport Rider.  I think it does a really good job of explaining what's going on.  There are others good places to read up too and I'm sure they're cited in the threads you can find using Search.

http://www.sportrider.com/suspension_settings/suspension_setup/146_0402_suspension_setup_guide/index.html

A common misconceptions example, with the forks most people think adjusting the screws in the top stiffen or soften the front end (not picking on you Alekkas - I used to think that too).  It 'mostly' just lowers or raises the resting point of the suspension.   I say 'mostly' because, well, if you get into it more there are other effects related to that, but lets just do the basics first.  ;)

If the previous paragraph is Chinese to you, go read the homework first.  At least then we'll be using the same words, with the same meaning ;)
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Offline Alekkas

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Re: Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2012, 03:31:51 pm »
Not picking on at all.  I've a lot to learn here!!!  Whatever the reason, tightening the preload has worked to make the bike respond better for me in conjunction with the rear settings.  My experience with the rear air for preload and dampening for ride seems very much in line with the article.  Thanks for posting the link.
Seagiant needs to post more!
'08 C14 / PGR  / IBA
Some ride reports:
http://leroylanes.blogspot.com/
On two wheels:

Offline mdr

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Re: Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2012, 03:40:24 pm »
Not picking on at all.  I've a lot to learn here!!!

We're all learning ;)  I learned last year my rear suspension was binding when changing the shock oil.  The bearings in the link were installed improperly at the factory <?!>, so it'd been binding all that time.  Fixing that and R&Ring the seals helped the rear a lot.  I had to start 'adjusting' all over again.  Up side is I can feel what the adjustments do now, not just "I think that's a little better".
Mark in Austin, AE5SJ
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http://www.randols.net/Connie/
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Offline GlenJJ

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Re: Suspension adjustment? Pre load adjustment?
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2012, 01:29:22 pm »
I recently added Gen-Mar Risers for my handlebars and adjusted my front Pre Load as well at the time.
It was way to soft and would dive into corners or even light braking (I have 50 pounds and 8" more height over the previous owner).

After reading the manual and adjusting it just a few lines I am calling it "dialed in" for my style.
I agree that incremental change and then test is the best method as it is my preferred method.
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