How much difference does changing sprockets make? - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 14 Old 06-13-2010, 10:11 PM Thread Starter
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How much difference does changing sprockets make?

I hear people talking all the time about how changing sprockets makes a bike feel quicker. It doesn't make sense to me. I understand that if I go to a 14 tooth sprocket the bike will be geared lower in each gear. That should make it pull harder in each gear but I will also need to shift at a lower speed. So, with a 14 tooth sprocket second gear would pull harder but I would have to shift to 3rd sooner and 3rd will not pull as hard in that transition range as the old second gear would have. It seems to me that these changes should even out except in first and 6th gears. Am I wrong? I've never switched sprockets, this is just what makes sense to me.

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post #2 of 14 Old 06-13-2010, 10:19 PM
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bigger rear sprocket

When I switched rear sprocket to one with 2 more teeth, the real difference is that now I have a 6th useable gear and not one only for highway speeds of about 120kph or greater. My fuel economy remains the same. It's all round a much better bike now.

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post #3 of 14 Old 06-14-2010, 12:27 AM
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I had the same issue with a 2001 GS Standard. Unlike the Adventure, 1st gear is very "tall" so the fix was to install 850R final drive. It essentially did the same as adding teeth to the rear sprocket.

I have a DL1000 and think it is too geared a bit tall, although 1st is much better than the GS Standard. I'll be adding some teeth to the rear sprocket but have not yet decided on how many. I would think it would make the 1000 lug less through the gears. And ditto on having a more useful 6th. I don't use 6th unless I am keep the engine at over about 4300RPM which is over 75MPH.

I'd like to change that a bit. I am sure there is a good thread or two somewhere on the forum that has some recomendations and lessons learned.
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post #4 of 14 Old 06-14-2010, 05:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timbo813 View Post
I hear people talking all the time about how changing sprockets makes a bike feel quicker. It doesn't make sense to me...
To try and actually answer your question...

"However, this is where sprocket selection can be advantageous: at a given road speed, and in a given gear, shorter gearing will have the motor spinning faster, where more power is available."

http://www.sportrider.com/tech/146_0...ing/index.html

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post #5 of 14 Old 06-14-2010, 06:47 AM
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If you want a bike with more responsive acceleration ad a couple teeth to the rear sprocket... That is enough to make you smile inside your helmet!!!

Some people may say that you will loose top end speed... True, your bike may only go 122 mph instead of 125mph...

Some people say: "-1 in the front sprocket, +2 in the rear sprocket." That is too much change and you will hate it...

Beware of the 14 tooth front sprocket... It makes a much smaller circumference for the chain to go around and it will increase chain wear... Stick to adding teeth to the rear sprocket...

Luis
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post #6 of 14 Old 06-14-2010, 06:54 AM
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I just recently dropped to 16t in front & stock in back(Thanks Blair!). I was finding the stock gearing a little tall, top speed is not important to me.
The easiest way to explain the difference is every gear seems to have dropped by a half. 2nd gear is like 1-1/2 gear etc.. it puts the bike in a better power range, that would be more require more shifting with stock gearing.
As for 6th gear, 5-1/2 if you're paying attention, it makes roll-ons and highway passing a breeze.

Edit: The RPM only went up about 250rpm at 100km/h gps speed.

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Last edited by JoWhee; 06-14-2010 at 07:03 AM.
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post #7 of 14 Old 06-14-2010, 07:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timbo813 View Post
I hear people talking all the time about how changing sprockets makes a bike feel quicker. It doesn't make sense to me. I understand that if I go to a 14 tooth sprocket the bike will be geared lower in each gear. That should make it pull harder in each gear but I will also need to shift at a lower speed. So, with a 14 tooth sprocket second gear would pull harder but I would have to shift to 3rd sooner and 3rd will not pull as hard in that transition range as the old second gear would have. It seems to me that these changes should even out except in first and 6th gears. Am I wrong? I've never switched sprockets, this is just what makes sense to me.
I was thinking just the same thing the other day. I recently switched to 16T and noticed 1st gear is taller and revs in top gear are lower, but in between it doesn't really matter as I pick whatever gear will give me the rev range I want.

The biggest advantage I find with 16T is that I can get to 100 kph in two gears instead of three without redlining. 14T would probably take four gear changes, which would be downright annoying.

In hindsight, I reckon Suzuki hit the ratio just right with the stock setup.

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post #8 of 14 Old 06-14-2010, 08:18 AM
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Depends

The only real change would be to lower or raise first gear. I rather doubt (though I haven't tried) that the bike will hit red line in 6th. Seemingly it bothers some folks to ride in 5th instead of 6th on the highway to keep the revs up. Other than starting out, you can achieve much the same effect (at no cost, except added fuel consumption) by leaving the bike one gear lower when riding in order to get the revs up. And you retain the option of going a gear higher to drop the revs, which you lose with the gearing change. Generally I leave it in 5th until the speed goes over 70, and that seems to work fine.
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post #9 of 14 Old 06-15-2010, 02:23 AM
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I swapped rear for a 43 and am completely satisfied. 1st gear doesn't red line at 25 mph anymore! Much more manageable at low speed...especially on dirt.

It will throw your speed & odometer off but a speedo healer will remedy that.

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post #10 of 14 Old 06-15-2010, 11:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SV650R View Post
If you want a bike with more responsive acceleration ad a couple teeth to the rear sprocket... That is enough to make you smile inside your helmet!!!

Some people may say that you will loose top end speed... True, your bike may only go 122 mph instead of 125mph...

Some people say: "-1 in the front sprocket, +2 in the rear sprocket." That is too much change and you will hate it...

Beware of the 14 tooth front sprocket... It makes a much smaller circumference for the chain to go around and it will increase chain wear... Stick to adding teeth to the rear sprocket...

Luis
Last time I checked there were no steel sprockets with more teeth available for the DL650. I think we are maxed out at 47t.

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