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Suspension and Tire Tech For all discussions related to your suspension and tire set-ups.

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  #31  
Old 12-15-2012, 08:31 AM
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Default I dove in and installed them.....

....here are my findings:

2004 DL650 V-Strom

25,000 miles

I weigh 190 pounds before another 20 pounds of Aerostich and boots, helmet, gloves, etc.

Elka Triple adjustable shock (Thanks Blair@SV Racing)

Fork Brace

Pat Walsh crash bars and skid plate

Sonic .90 Springs

Been riding with this set-up for two years.

Yesterday I added the latest spec Ricor Intiminators, they came woth the .12? shim stack.

I did NOT modify the Intiminators.

I did NOT modify the damper rods.

I did NOT change the fork position in the triple clamps.

I did NOT change the shock settings.

I DID switch from Continental Road Attack II tires to Michelin Pilot Road 3 Trail tires at the same time as the Ricor Intiminator install, so that will muddy the change somewhat.

I just picked up the bike from my tech in Houston and rode her three hours on Interstate 10 to my Louisiana home.

So, my forks were already stiffer with the .90 springs. Here are my thoughts:

The bike is much more "planted". The forks feel very firm, they follow the road imperfections without hopping into the air over bumps, the tire stays glued to the road.

The bike turns and leans in a beautifully predictable and light way. I can lean her EXACTLY the right amount and she stays EXACTLY at the lean angle I place her and requires ZERO correction to keep her EXACTLY where I want her.

The forks transmit more bumps into the bars on concrete rippled pavement. At first I thought to myself, "Uh-Oh, I just made the bike too stiff and she is going to beat me up on trips."

After a few miles, however, as I rode on concrete, then blacktop, then back on concrete, she seemed to soften up a bit.

By the two hour point in the ride home, I was LOVING the new setup. The forks absorb sharp edged bumps like a dream. When I hit a piece of concrete that has uplifted an inch, and I hit the 90 degree edge of slab, the forks just eat it, without transmitting that big bump into the bars. Also, I used to get a slow "pogo" effect front to rear, that is now gone. The bike is flat and stable on undulating surfaces.

The other big change, is when I stopped for fuel. The low speed handling at walking pace, has been transformed. I use to have a heck of a time with this beast at walking speed since I have really short legs. I have dumped my bike over at 2 mph more times than I want to admit.

Now, with these Ricor units, I can perform a feet up, 5 mph u-turn like a pro.

I was not expecting this.

My V-Strom is soooooo much easier to maneuver at slow speed now. Money well spent just for that alone.

I hit a couple of clover leaf interchanges at 80+ mph and she just RAILS. Epic.

I'm very, very happy.

I think Ricor is correct in that you could probably just drop these in with stock springs and be very, very happy.

My .90 springs make this combo just a hair too firm, but I like it that way. Anyone out there who rides more slab and dirt and less twisty roads than I, may prefer the Ricors with their OEM, stock springs.

Again, I performed NONE of the modifications to the Ricors or the damper rods that the above folks have listed.

And the Pilot Road 3 Trail tires are FANTASTIC.

All the best.

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Last edited by Shooter; 12-15-2012 at 08:34 AM.
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  #32  
Old 12-15-2012, 08:39 PM
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I have the Intiminators in my garage for my 2012 650 Adventure. Brian at RICOR suggested going one or two steps softer than the Racetech Spring Rate for my weight. I believe him. I used to have a RICOR-equipped KLR650, and after I quit bombing through hard desert terrain, I went back to STOCK SPRINGS! The Intiminators just don't have to have such a stiff spring in order to fight the bottoming-out that many other products seem to rely upon.

I have a rear shock with the Inertia valve coming soon. Can't wait to have them both on my bike. I sold a DR350 once I got my KLR650 with RICORs front and rear, because that heavy KLR would then outclimb the DR! And, I could sit down on the KLR coming down very rocky, rough terrain, where any other bike I've ever had, I had to stand in order to go down that same hill.

I love the technology of the Inertia Valve.
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  #33  
Old 01-04-2013, 08:49 PM
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Just dropped these into a 2012 DL 650.

Changed 2/3 of the fork oil for 5 wt (pumped the old oil out the top). Made the new spacers 25mm shorter than stock.

Less harsh than stock on my first short test ride on seal, seemed to hold the road better as well.

So, having some confidence that the suspension wasn't going to do anything odd I hammered the bike around Springbrook Rd, with a quick detour to check out a lumpy section of dirt on a closed off access road.

I did several runs along the relatively short dirt section, and ran out of braking distance before I got to speeds where the suspension was complaining - I probably reached twice the speed the bike would have handled comfortably stock and wasn't at the limit.

Coming down the winding sealed mountain road, by the end I was braking very late, very hard and very deep with zero problems getting around the corners.

I was amazed how stable the bike was under brakes - now all it needs is a better/braver rider to take it out hunting squids

Pete
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  #34  
Old 01-05-2013, 12:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeteW View Post
.......
.... I hammered the bike around Springbrook Rd, with a quick detour to check out a lumpy section of dirt on a closed off access road.

......

Pete
where is this special access road you are talking about?

assuming you have done any mods on the rebound, sounded like you needed reduce your rebound on the stock L2? Intiminator is pretty good for braking then....

Sad to see you changing from Emulator to intiminator, your old K6 on emulator was always a good comparison.
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  #35  
Old 01-05-2013, 01:59 AM
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There's an access road to the river near the bottom of Pine creek road, of course you can't use that since it's gated . There's also the ramp of road building debris on the other side.

No changes, in the end I dropped them in, lowered the oil weight and went for a ride. Shim stack is now 5x1.2 stock, plus the sealing ring now is now a 'piston ring' type rather than a rubber seal. (Lower stiction and probably bypasses a little oil)

Not many washboards, but the ones I found certainly didn't show the packing down problem your original Intiminator setup did.

Braking was really impressive, where I had sightlines I probably halved my braking distances coming into the corners, it wasn't just the lack of dive, but the stability and feel under hard braking is a lot better than stock. I can see why the SV riders like these on the track.

If it doesn't rain tomorrow I'll hit some dirt and see what happens there at speed, the short lengths of dirt I did today were pretty impressive but not long enough to get a good feel for the suspension.

SteveC still has the K6 , if necessary we can compare.

Pete
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  #36  
Old 01-05-2013, 05:51 AM
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well with the baby, i am quite home bound, the only ride i do these days is between home and office - hopefully i can get out more from FEB.

is your L2 running on stock spring or the wilbur spring you have from the old K6.

Did u sell the K6 with the emulator?
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  #37  
Old 01-05-2013, 06:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AceRider View Post
well with the baby, i am quite home bound, the only ride i do these days is between home and office - hopefully i can get out more from FEB.

is your L2 running on stock spring or the wilbur spring you have from the old K6.

Did u sell the K6 with the emulator?
The suspension on the L2 was a lot better stock than the K6 so I didn't bother pulling the front ends apart to swap innards. So the K6 still has the good race-tech front end.

Anyway, dirt.

Feels firmer, but takes potholes a lot better, corrugations no problem. The big gain is under braking, probably saves 20% of stopping distances on lumpy dirt roads and lumpy gravel downhills are a LOT easier. Instead of a lot of engine braking, feathering the clutch and rear brake, using as much front brake as I dare, it's now low gear and mostly front brake with a lot more control.

That was ideal surfaces though, light rain overnight to make the dust sticky but not wet so for gravel roads, the surfaces were pretty grippy.
========
Final comments:

If you own a 2012 DL 650, I'd rate the Intiminators up there with a fork brace as a value-for money upgrade. Drop them in, change to lighter fork oil, couldn't be simpler.
I couldn't find anywhere that the suspension was worse than stock and the improvement in braking performance alone makes this worth considering simply from the POV of safety. The harder I pushed the bike, the more dramatic the performance improvement was.


Pete

Last edited by PeteW; 01-05-2013 at 07:46 PM. Reason: Update with final comments
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  #38  
Old 01-05-2013, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeteW View Post
The harder I pushed the bike, the more dramatic the performance improvement was. Pete
That's exactly what I found with the KLR. I haven't ridden many miles on the DL, heck, I don't even have the tires scrubbed in (snow on the ground, minus 2 F tonight, etc.), so my opinion of how they work on the DL isn't worth much. On the KLR, I found I could hold a steering line in a turn full of washboards...even with the throttle open (once I had the valve in the rear shock, too). I'm hopeful they work as well on the 2012 DL...but, I really don't know yet.
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  #39  
Old 01-05-2013, 11:20 PM
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Default falling

Quote:
Originally Posted by DSlag View Post
AceRider

The cornering is... ...well... ...scary. When it drops into a corner it just falls over with little feel or feedback.

So, will an upgrade to the suspension help out?

Thanks,
this amateur thinks that your issue lies elsewhere, perhaps tire choice, inflation and wear

when I first rode my (used) 2007 I felt like the bike liked to lean as much as to stay upright - sort of weird at the time, now I am quite used to it (this was coming from an EX250).
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  #40  
Old 01-06-2013, 04:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackheart View Post
That's exactly what I found with the KLR. I haven't ridden many miles on the DL, heck, I don't even have the tires scrubbed in (snow on the ground, minus 2 F tonight, etc.), so my opinion of how they work on the DL isn't worth much. On the KLR, I found I could hold a steering line in a turn full of washboards...even with the throttle open (once I had the valve in the rear shock, too). I'm hopeful they work as well on the 2012 DL...but, I really don't know yet.
You can get a DL that good, my K6 with Race-Tech emulators was. My rear shock needs a service though, so today although the front tracked just fine, the rear was hopping around a bit on the washies.

Rear shock service is next on the list .

Pete
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