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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all I'm looking for some recommendations for suspension setup for frequent two up riding on my 06 DL1000. We ride with two Givi side-bags, top-case, pat walsh engine guard and crash bars. I'll guess that with my wife and the accessories the combined weight would be around 400 lbs. Maybe a little more for a full out road trip. It seems to me that suspensions seem to be a science unto itself. What would be the best oil replacement for the front for a plush ride loaded up stock? Seems when I crank up the preload I get a harsh ride. So to sum it up what would be the best advise to help with the stock setup? Also what would be some aftermarket recommendations that would allow for a quick change back to a single rider?

On a side note with the demise of the rapidforums does anyone know if the data from them has been captured and posted elsewhere?
 

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bottoms out

i dont crank the preload up to much , but if im om a bumpy road and bottom out the shock i turn it up a bit more
 

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Hello all I'm looking for some recommendations for suspension setup for frequent two up riding on my 06 DL1000. We ride with two Givi side-bags, top-case, pat walsh engine guard and crash bars. I'll guess that with my wife and the accessories the combined weight would be around 400 lbs. Maybe a little more for a full out road trip. It seems to me that suspensions seem to be a science unto itself. What would be the best oil replacement for the front for a plush ride loaded up stock? Seems when I crank up the preload I get a harsh ride. So to sum it up what would be the best advise to help with the stock setup? Also what would be some aftermarket recommendations that would allow for a quick change back to a single rider?

On a side note with the demise of the rapidforums does anyone know if the data from them has been captured and posted elsewhere?
Too much preload will give you a harsh ride. With the stock fork springs it ends up being the worst of both worlds, both harsh and too soft all at once. Better fork springs and 10w oil will help. At the rear, a quality aftermarket shock will make a huge difference.
 

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Definitely need new, stiffer springs up front for full load touring. I believe the rear will need some help as well. I haven't had mine long enough to get to that part yet, but most likely this winter will tear into the suspension.

Just an oil change won't help much with too weak of springs.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Definitely need new, stiffer springs up front for full load touring. I believe the rear will need some help as well. I haven't had mine long enough to get to that part yet, but most likely this winter will tear into the suspension.

Just an oil change won't help much with too weak of springs.
That's the thing. I'm not so sure the springs are weak, with the p reload cranked up almost to max the sag \ ride height seems ok (although I did not measure) but the ride is too harsh. I'm not sure what effect the oil plays. The stock oil is 10w I believe and I've read a post somewhere where one guy recommends 15w and another 5w. I'm totally confused. So if I get my ride height from the springs and the cushioning effect from the oil using thicker oil I suppose will make the bumps harsher and thinner oil softer? Please advise. I'm sure I don't fully understand suspensions. My other problem is I'm cheap :) been suffering from this for quite some time... So I'd like to do the best I can with oil or oil and perhaps progressive suspension springs as I understand they are around $50-$60 for the DL1000.

Please chime in with some advise or share what you all may have done with your suspensions.
 
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I'm far from expert and I'm still on the stock set-up on my Vee, but I changed out for progressive springs on my KLR and I can tell you it made a WORLD of difference. I have no reason to believe it would be otherwise on the Vee (unless the Vee's stock fork springs are so good that they're nearly the progressives already.)

I should say, "Progressive" springs with a capital "P", since I think that's the co. who made them - but they were also progressively wound - the distance between the coils was not constant thru the length of the spring. I guess in theory they absorbed the small bumps with the "weak" part of the spring but were still harder to bottom out because as the displacement goes up, so does the spring rate.

My understanding of the oil weight as regards forks: inside the forks there are small passages thru which the oil is squeezed when the forks are compressed. Heavier oil being a little more viscous is supposed to flow more slowly and therefor provide a "stiffer" ride. In reality, it seems like they would just be slower to respond, but again, I don't know WTF I'm talking about.

I put raising links on the back of the KLR, and I have half a mind to put some on the Vee. They change the geometry, and therefor leverage, of the rear shock. Rides a bit higher (which might be a plus if you're tall or would lower the forks for the quicker steering anyway), but again, it's like gaining a bunch of extra capacity (reduces sag and effectively acts like a higher-rate spring).

I've been following this thread with some interest because as a BFG (big fat guy), suspension upgrades are on my wishlist. At 300#, I've been riding with both the front and back pre-loads maxed out. This gives acceptable sag (also never measured it), but it is a VERY harsh ride. I assume since I probably weigh more than some couples 2-up AND their gear, this has been a reasonable approach - but I've never come close to bottoming the suspension, and the travel IS there to be used, so I've been thinking of lowering the pre-load. As a BFG, you just tend to set everything to max right off the bat.

I'm in Emmaus, so we're practically neighbors. If you ever want to ride with a noob, compare bikes, etc... drop me a line.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yes I have had the Progresive springs in and older Honda and I was pleased with them.
So perhaps a little harsh preload and thinner oil would make for a better ride?

Guess we'll have to sit back and wait for an expert opinion on the matter.
 

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That's the thing. I'm not so sure the springs are weak, with the p reload cranked up almost to max the sag \ ride height seems ok (although I did not measure) but the ride is too harsh. I'm not sure what effect the oil plays. The stock oil is 10w I believe and I've read a post somewhere where one guy recommends 15w and another 5w. I'm totally confused. So if I get my ride height from the springs and the cushioning effect from the oil using thicker oil I suppose will make the bumps harsher and thinner oil softer? Please advise. I'm sure I don't fully understand suspensions. My other problem is I'm cheap :) been suffering from this for quite some time... So I'd like to do the best I can with oil or oil and perhaps progressive suspension springs as I understand they are around $50-$60 for the DL1000.

Please chime in with some advise or share what you all may have done with your suspensions.
The stock springs are too soft. If you crank in enough preload to get your sag number in the ballpark then the excessive preload makes it harsh. Progressive (the company) springs are better than the stock ones, but not as good as quality straight rate springs are. For any explanation of why straight-rate springs are better than progressively wound ones look here:

http://www.sonicsprings.com/catalog/straight_vs_prog_tech_article.php

Disclaimer: I own Sonic Springs, so obviously I have a vested interest. But I think that if you search for reviews on our springs you'll find enough independent opinions to draw your own conclusions. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Looks like I'm going with the progessive suspensions springs and 10 or 12.5 w oil.
I ordered the springs for around $67.00. Confirmed with Justin from progressive on the part number 11-1144. Now off to look for the passenger pegs for the wife on the rear. Keeps ripping the rubbers off the stock ones. Found plenty of pegs for the rider. Fasway, IMS, Pivot Pegz and others but none for the passenger. Oh Also ordered Sliders to help protect the frame / fairing...I'm almost there, done farkling!
 

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Rich, I have a delema..I'm a big boy and sometimes I go touring with quite a bit of gear or even 2up with some gear as well

I know that I never run less than 300lbs in addition to the weight of the strom and sometimes as much as 600lbs

recomendations .... ?

Randy,

I'd go with 1.0 springs and 10w oil up front. Easy and relatively cheap. :) The rear will be more expensive to do right. You really need a good aftermarket shock back there, given the variation in load you might want to consider one with a remote preload adjuster.
I'm planning on getting an Elka from Blair for mine. Really should have already done it, the stock shock is getting tired, but the race bike and the Duc sucked up all my farkle money this year. :mrgreen:
 

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Randy,

I'd go with 1.0 springs and 10w oil up front. Easy and relatively cheap. :) The rear will be more expensive to do right. You really need a good aftermarket shock back there, given the variation in load you might want to consider one with a remote preload adjuster.
I'm planning on getting an Elka from Blair for mine. Really should have already done it, the stock shock is getting tired, but the race bike and the Duc sucked up all my farkle money this year. :mrgreen:

you think 1.0 would be ok, I certainly don't want a "stiff" ride, something I thought might happen when I punch my #s is the spring rate calculator on your site, I come up with 1.2 but I also notice the heaviest springs you have for the Vee are 1.1



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you think 1.0 would be ok, I certainly don't want a "stiff" ride, something I thought might happen when I punch my #s is the spring rate calculator on your site, I come up with 1.2 but I also notice the heaviest springs you have for the Vee are 1.1
I have 1.0 springs in the front. Best change I've made to the 650. If I had a DL1000, I'd be tempted by the 1.1 since the bike is heavier.
 

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you think 1.0 would be ok, I certainly don't want a "stiff" ride, something I thought might happen when I punch my #s is the spring rate calculator on your site, I come up with 1.2 but I also notice the heaviest springs you have for the Vee are 1.1
Randy,

An argument could be made for you to use the 1.1s, but over the years of reading your posts on this and the SV list I get the impression that you would be happiest with a setup a touch softer than I normally recommend. We've "known" each other 10 years now, ya know. :)

On the 1.2s were you putting in the 2-up weight to get that??
 

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Hopefully this post isn't too far off the OP's mark.

Rich, I see by your signature that you have a 1980 GS1000. I bought one of the first year GS1000s in 1978.

I have always compared my DL1000's suspension to that of the 1978 GS and found it wanting (understatement). I remember that the GS had air adjustable forks. The thing I liked so well about that GS is the way it went over small bumps and irregularities without transmitting them to the rider and bike. This was even true even on mid corner bumps when leaned clear over scraping stuff with the throttle pinned. Why doesn't my 2003 V-Strom have suspension as effective as my 1978 GS? I suspect it is a matter of cost. How can I make my front suspension more like that old GS's?
 

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Randy,

An argument could be made for you to use the 1.1s, but over the years of reading your posts on this and the SV list I get the impression that you would be happiest with a setup a touch softer than I normally recommend. We've "known" each other 10 years now, ya know. :)

On the 1.2s were you putting in the 2-up weight to get that??
ya I was putting the 2up weight in and your correct, I profer the suspension on the softer side of things



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Buck,

How long has it been since you rode a GS?? :)

The forks on those bikes were really soft and flexy. (I also had a '79 with stock suspension back in the early '80s) Nice compliance over small bumps, but easily bottomed over big ones. Cornering clearance wasn't great either, so dragging stuff wasn't too hard even with the tires of the day.
Even with the upgraded suspension on the GS I have now the Strom is a muuuch better handling and more comfortable bike.

That said, the Vees do have an excess of compression damping in the fork, and revalving or putting in Race-Tech Gold Valves will improve the compliance over small, sharp bumps.


Hopefully this post isn't too far off the OP's mark.

Rich, I see by your signature that you have a 1980 GS1000. I bought one of the first year GS1000s in 1978.

I have always compared my DL1000's suspension to that of the 1978 GS and found it wanting (understatement). I remember that the GS had air adjustable forks. The thing I liked so well about that GS is the way it went over small bumps and irregularities without transmitting them to the rider and bike. This was even true even on mid corner bumps when leaned clear over scraping stuff with the throttle pinned. Why doesn't my 2003 V-Strom have suspension as effective as my 1978 GS? I suspect it is a matter of cost. How can I make my front suspension more like that old GS's?
 

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Buck,

How long has it been since you rode a GS?? :)

The forks on those bikes were really soft and flexy. (I also had a '79 with stock suspension back in the early '80s) Nice compliance over small bumps, but easily bottomed over big ones. Cornering clearance wasn't great either, so dragging stuff wasn't too hard even with the tires of the day.
Even with the upgraded suspension on the GS I have now the Strom is a muuuch better handling and more comfortable bike.

That said, the Vees do have an excess of compression damping in the fork, and revalving or putting in Race-Tech Gold Valves will improve the compliance over small, sharp bumps.
It has been many years ago since my last ride on a GS1000. However, I don't remember EVER bottoming out my GS suspension. I agree about the cornering clearance of course. Did you ever ride one with wire wheels instead of the mags? My weight could be a factor.

See, when I owned my GS I was barely over 200 pounds and now I'm barely under 300.

Thanks for the input, Rich.
 
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