Author Topic: suspension adjustment  (Read 9843 times)

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Offline Jed

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suspension adjustment
« on: May 19, 2010, 12:45:00 pm »
HI everyone. I own a 2001 concours. On reading the chalmers repair manual I noticed that the front and rear shocks are pre set for a 150lb riders.  I have not seen that weight since I was in knee pants! Fortunately the manual specifies what the rear shock should be pumped up to for my porkiness. My problem is with the front shock adjustment. The adjuster is marked with 7 lines and has 5 lines exposed for the mythical 150lb rider. I adjusted both to just expose 3 lines, assuming that most of the adjustment play would be for heavier riders. But I don't know and would appreciate any advice. I think I am getting a firmer ride, maybe to firm. Before I make any more adjustments I would like to know if my assumption on the front shock is correct.   Thanks.

Offline Rory GA

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suspension adjustment
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2010, 03:01:00 pm »
And on a related note... what are those suggested adjustment settings? For those that have both, which is the manual to havem if you don't have any at all. The Kawasaki manual or Clymers?  
Rosie, '95 Connie

Offline Ranger Jim

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« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2010, 05:12:00 pm »
You may want to "play" with the front suspension to find the best setting for you. IIRC, More Lines = Stiffer. Later you may want to consider replacing the stock springs with Sonics if the PO didn't do so already.    As far as manuals go, I recommend you get BOTH. IMO, the factory manual has better explanations but Clymer's has better pictures. YMMV.  
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Offline Jed

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« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2010, 06:12:00 pm »
thanks Ranger Jim. However I am still a little confused. The factory setting exposes 5 lines for a 150lb rider. If I back off the adjuster so that 6 lines are exposed (and their are only 7 lines ) then I will get a stiffer ride. However what I have done by tightening the adjuster down to 3 lines exposed is make the bike looser. And therefore what I should have done to firm up the ride was to back off the adjuster to the 6th or 7th line. Do I have that right.  Tks  

Offline croach1776

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suspension adjustment
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2010, 08:28:00 pm »
I felt my front suspension was pretty stiff - normal bumps,etc really made the front fairing shake. The adjusters were screwed all the way in. I backed them out about 2.5 turns and also adjusted the rear shock to 20lbs and 2 on the preload. Really smoother ride and seems I am sitting a little closer to road. I dont get too crazy on twisties so not really a compromise, more into LD riding so feels better, IMHO  C K Roach Jr  COG#9094  CDA# 0319  you cant lose what you never had  2005 Concour "Gold Rush"  1983 Suzuki GS750ES - Project  1983 Suzuki GL850 - Sold  1982 Suzuki GS650G - Sold
C K Roach Jr  IBA#42837  SS-K  COG#9094  CDA# 0319  AMA# 2704431 _ "you cant lose what you never had"  2005 Concour "Gold Rush"  1983 Suzuki GS750ES - Project  1983 Suzuki GL850 - Sold  1982 Suzuki GS650G - Sold

Offline Slybones

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suspension adjustment
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2010, 01:20:00 am »
Front:    The preload adjustment is used for setting the ride height of the bike. The way you do this is my measuring the "sag". Here are two links to sonic springs site and tech articles that explain preload and how to set the sag. While I am sure you feel some difference in how it rides, adjusting the preload does not change the spring rate or anything like that.  These will answer the question of how to play with that adjustment on the front.    http://www.sonicsprings.com/catalog/preload_tech_article.php  http://www.sonicsprings.com/catalog/setting_sag_street_tech_article.php    You can get more compression dampening and in some respect some additional spring rate by adjusting the volume of oil in the forks. More oil means less air, and that existing air will compress sooner. Once the air starts to compress it will start to act like a spring. -- Learn how to measure for oil ( if you dont already know ) and add 10mm at a time ie.. go from 160mm to 150mm to 140mm etc.     This helps a little. Not a lot. Anb too much oil is not the best thing for fork seals. The best route is better springs with increased spring rate. Sonic Springs are the most popular.    For our dampening rod forks the rebound dampening is controlled by the weight of the oil, 10w, 15w, etc. This should be matched to your springs. Stock springs can probably handle 10w fine, some like 15w. Most aftermarket springs recommend 15w so the increase in rebound dampening goes with the increased spring rate.           2003 Concours, 59K  COG #6953  IBA 28004  http://home.comcast.net/~slybones/Concours/connieMain.htm    
« Last Edit: May 20, 2010, 03:22:00 am by Slybones »
2003 Concours, 121K
2005 GL1800ABS, 52K
COG #6953, IBA 28004

Offline Slybones

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suspension adjustment
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2010, 01:30:00 am »
Rear:    The little adjuster in the rear shock is for rebound dampening. Same as in front the amount of rebound should match your spring rate. In the front we dont have an adjustment for this. But we don't really have a way to change spring rate except for changing the springs.     In the rear we do have rebound adjustment. Why, because air act as a spring. The air adjustment in the rear acts as a preload adjustment for the rear changing the ride height. But the air also acts as a spring when it compresses. More air in the rear shock means more spring as the shock compresses. So you want more rebound.     Most people run 2 on the rebound dampening when the air is in the 25psi range. And by 50 psi use setting 4.    As for air itself some like running 50psi all the time as they like the firmer ride and sporty nature if it. Some like the smoother ride of 25-30psi and only increase to 40 and 50 psi with passengers and load.    2003 Concours, 59K  COG #6953  IBA 28004  http://home.comcast.net/~slybones/Concours/connieMain.htm    
« Last Edit: May 20, 2010, 03:36:00 am by Slybones »
2003 Concours, 121K
2005 GL1800ABS, 52K
COG #6953, IBA 28004

Offline Slybones

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suspension adjustment
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2010, 10:24:00 am »
Short Answer to your question: I think of it like screwing in a bolt.     More lines showing means the bolt is turned in less, means pressing less on the spring, means less preload ( not softer or stiffer ).    Less lines showing means the bolt is turned in more, means pressing on the spring more, means more preload.  2003 Concours, 59K  COG #6953  IBA 28004  http://home.comcast.net/~slybones/Concours/connieMain.htm  
2003 Concours, 121K
2005 GL1800ABS, 52K
COG #6953, IBA 28004

Offline Jed

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« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2010, 06:19:00 pm »
Thanks all for the input. When I get a couple of buddies together I will check the sag on the present settings. On the rear I had pumped it up to 25psi and the rebound is set at two.   Tks again.  

Offline Rider651

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suspension adjustment
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2010, 02:14:00 pm »
The manual is silent on servicing the rear shock, but I wonder if it's a good idea to change the oil?  If so, what kind of oil and what is the procedure?  Thanks.  

Offline Ranger Jim

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« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2010, 08:20:00 pm »
Murph has a most excellent kit for servicing the rear shock. Has everything you need.  
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Offline Rider651

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« Reply #11 on: May 30, 2010, 02:22:00 pm »
Ah! now I remember (this happens more often lately).  I got this kit from Murphy few years ago.  Is this where you measure the quantity that is in the chock before you discard it?  I may still have the 2 plastic containers and the measuring syringe.  I do not have the instruction that came with the kit.  Thank you.    

Offline Ranger Jim

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« Reply #12 on: May 30, 2010, 07:59:00 pm »
Yep. That's the one.  
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Offline TrenchFighter

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Re: suspension adjustment
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2010, 08:52:37 pm »
I know this is an old topic, but for future searches....the explaination of the settings can now be found here

  http://rantthisspace.com/connietech/12_suspension/

Download the zipfile and unzip it to see full size pics
Feels great to be riding again!!!