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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, so I just installed new RaceTech front fork spring on my 2012 Glee and I think there are some issues that I need to work through resulting from this data:

1) The RaceTech springs are 137mm shorter than the stock springs

2) The Glee comes from the factory with a 100mm spacer resting on top of the spring

3) The RaceTech instructions indicate a preload of 20mm & an oil measurement of 150mm from the fork tube top...

Therefore I am making the following assumptions:
1) I will need to ADD 137mm PLUS 100mm to make a PVC spacer 237mm in length-just to make the new RaceTech springs the same length as the stock set-up... IS THAT THE CORRECT ASSUMPTION?

2) I should then ADD an additional 20mm of PVC spacer for RaceTech's suggested preload (making my PVC spacer 257mm in total length...IS THAT THE CORRECT ASSUMPTION?

The reason that I'm asking is that when I cut the PVC spacers at 257mm, I could not even get the springs to compress enough to tighten the fork caps. So, I cut a 2nd set of PVC spacers that were 237mm (basically, I removed the 20mm suggested preload setting) and I could just barely get the fork caps reinstalled.

Am I doing something wrong here? Truth be told, I'm not a great mechanic, but I usually can figure stuff out like this (valve adjustments on my air-cooled dual sport are a cinch), but I just want to make sure that I'm not making a stupid mistake and negating any benefit of the new RaceTech springs.

Any advice/comments will be greatly appreciated.
 

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According to your measurement of the parts, the 237mm spacers are correct. There is usually a little resistance when installing the fork caps. The final 20mm preload comes from the adjusters in the fork caps, and may vary with your weight when you measure sag.
 

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Start with the 237. But remember to set sag correctly the stronger springs may not need as long a spacer. That is where trial and error come in. Much easier to cut some off than to make longer spacers!
 

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Okay, so I just installed new RaceTech front fork spring on my 2012 Glee and I think there are some issues that I need to work through resulting from this data:

1) The RaceTech springs are 137mm shorter than the stock springs

2) The Glee comes from the factory with a 100mm spacer resting on top of the spring

3) The RaceTech instructions indicate a preload of 20mm & an oil measurement of 150mm from the fork tube top...

Therefore I am making the following assumptions:
1) I will need to ADD 137mm PLUS 100mm to make a PVC spacer 237mm in length-just to make the new RaceTech springs the same length as the stock set-up... IS THAT THE CORRECT ASSUMPTION?

2) I should then ADD an additional 20mm of PVC spacer for RaceTech's suggested preload (making my PVC spacer 257mm in total length...IS THAT THE CORRECT ASSUMPTION?

The reason that I'm asking is that when I cut the PVC spacers at 257mm, I could not even get the springs to compress enough to tighten the fork caps. So, I cut a 2nd set of PVC spacers that were 237mm (basically, I removed the 20mm suggested preload setting) and I could just barely get the fork caps reinstalled.

NO!! ;)

You need to make the total stack height (spring + spacer total length) a little less than stock. And you're mis-understanding what Race-Tech means when they say 20mm of preload. That's the amount you want the spring compressed with the fork cap in place and the preload adjuster in the middle of it's range. Personally, I think that's a bit much, 12-15mm is better IMO. It's not additional static preload over the stock amount.

Make the spacer 230mm long, ride and be happy. :)
 

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I think this is difficult to do just by calculating compared to the combined length of the stock spring and spacer.
Drop the new spring into the fork tube and fully extend the tube.
Slide in a piece of PVC (1" sch40 or sch80) which is longer than you need and sticks up out of the fork tube.
Mark the PVC where it meets the top of the tube.
Remove the PVC
Next, measure on the fork cap the distance from where the cap seals at the top of the tube to the bottom of the cap where it will meet the PVC. Mmake sure the cap is set to the middle of the preload adjustment (second line).
Mark the PVC to shorten it by that distance.
Now add back the preload distance (20mm sounds like too much, but that may be correct).
Cut the PVC at that point.
You should now have a spacer that, once the cap is back on, compresses the spring by your preload distance.
Does this make sense?
 

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NO!! ;)

You need to make the total stack height (spring + spacer total length) a little less than stock. And you're mis-understanding what Race-Tech means when they say 20mm of preload. That's the amount you want the spring compressed with the fork cap in place and the preload adjuster in the middle of it's range. Personally, I think that's a bit much, 12-15mm is better IMO. It's not additional static preload over the stock amount.

Make the spacer 230mm long, ride and be happy. :)
Makes sense. I was thinking they are probably firmer springs so that has to be accounted for.
 

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Ive done a few Race Tech sets on Ninjas and R1s. The sets Ive used came with a section of tubular steel to be cut to length.
What I do is install the new springs. Fork fully extended, measure from the top of the tube to the top of the spring. To that measurement add your preload amount. And from that number subtract the thread length of your cap. Cut your spacers to that length.
Ive never had a problem with this procedure.
 

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Do "exactly" what Rich Desmond says to do.....he knows such things. ;)
 

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I think this is difficult to do just by calculating compared to the combined length of the stock spring and spacer.
Drop the new spring into the fork tube and fully extend the tube.
Slide in a piece of PVC (1" sch40 or sch80) which is longer than you need and sticks up out of the fork tube.
Mark the PVC where it meets the top of the tube.
Remove the PVC
Next, measure on the fork cap the distance from where the cap seals at the top of the tube to the bottom of the cap where it will meet the PVC. Mmake sure the cap is set to the middle of the preload adjustment (second line).
Mark the PVC to shorten it by that distance.
Now add back the preload distance (20mm sounds like too much, but that may be correct).
Cut the PVC at that point.
You should now have a spacer that, once the cap is back on, compresses the spring by your preload distance.
Does this make sense?
In general the procedure you're outlining is totally correct. The shortcut I gave is only for the 650 Stroms. Only works because I happen to know how much shorter the stack needs to be on our bikes. :)
 
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Ive done a few Race Tech sets on Ninjas and R1s. The sets Ive used came with a section of tubular steel to be cut to length.
What I do is install the new springs. Fork fully extended, measure from the top of the tube to the top of the spring. To that measurement add your preload amount. And from that number subtract the thread length of your cap. Cut your spacers to that length.
Ive never had a problem with this procedure.
Mostly right, just one small nit. It's not the "thread length" of the cap that matters, it's the distance from the sealing surface of the cap to the surface that contacts the spacer.
That's probably what you meant, just didn't want there to be any confusion.
 

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That is exactly what I meant to write. I measure from the underside of the cap that contacts the top of the fork tube to the flat surface under the bottom cap thread.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I think this is difficult to do just by calculating compared to the combined length of the stock spring and spacer.
Drop the new spring into the fork tube and fully extend the tube.
Slide in a piece of PVC (1" sch40 or sch80) which is longer than you need and sticks up out of the fork tube.
Mark the PVC where it meets the top of the tube.
Remove the PVC
Next, measure on the fork cap the distance from where the cap seals at the top of the tube to the bottom of the cap where it will meet the PVC. Mmake sure the cap is set to the middle of the preload adjustment (second line).
Mark the PVC to shorten it by that distance.
Now add back the preload distance (20mm sounds like too much, but that may be correct).
Cut the PVC at that point.
You should now have a spacer that, once the cap is back on, compresses the spring by your preload distance.
Does this make sense?
This is by far the clearest explanation of how to cut spacers I have ever read! I feel like a total idiot for not being able to figure out how to do it, but I REALLY appreciate this advice! I totally get it now...and I hope it will make my V-Strom even better than it already is.
 

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I may have missed this in the previous discussion, but do realize you can back out the preload adjuster on the fork caps (the center section of the cap with a screwdriver slot) before screwing on the fork cap. This will minimize the tension necessary to engage the threads when you put the cap back on. Once threaded on, the preload adjuster can be screwed in to set your preload.
 
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