Strom suspension on rough roads? - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 9 Old 08-15-2010, 08:29 AM Thread Starter
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Strom suspension on rough roads?

One of the reasons I bought my old KLR was because it had suspension that would handle our less than primitive local roads. I'm not talking trails, or even dirt roads. Our main state roads are terrible at best, with potholes and cracks. I enjoyed my KLR because there was no streetbike that could come close to keeping up with me on these kinds of roads. Sportbikes just bounced around, and cruisers bottom out. I know because I hardly ever ride my Intruder because of it.

I know a Strom isn't built for long travel, such as jumps and harsh landings. But how do they do on the rougher roads? If they are half way between a KLR and an average sportbike, I should be quite happy.

Jim

Previous Bikes:
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post #2 of 9 Old 08-15-2010, 08:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhdiesel View Post

I know a Strom isn't built for long travel, such as jumps and harsh landings. But how do they do on the rougher roads? If they are half way between a KLR and an average sportbike, I should be quite happy.

Jim
You should be over joyed.

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post #3 of 9 Old 08-15-2010, 08:50 AM
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I owned a 2006 KLR650 before my 05 V-Strom. I've also ridden an "Adventure Touring" SV650 and a DL650 back-to-back down Route 17 in Maine, which is a nice twisty road but kind of bumpy. That's a pretty telling comparison because the suspension on both bikes is pretty similar.




The 19" front makes a huge difference compared to sport bikes. The DL650 rode much smoother compared to the SV650. And the riding position was much more relaxed and allowed you to stand up more readily.

The result? He bought a V-Strom.


I work several days a week in Auburn. It's not really near Milan but if you want to stop by and take a ride you are welcome to.

2005 DL650 (sold) | 2009 DL650A (sold) | 2008 Tiger 1050 ABS | 2012 WR250R | 2008 CRF100F
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post #4 of 9 Old 08-15-2010, 09:18 AM
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Primitive pavement is often my favorite. Few things in life make me as happy as going balls-out up a mountain over some rough mountain pavement. I just love that stuff. The DL1000 is a blast in that situation. The DL650 is also better than most in that situation, but does fall short of the big Strom. Either bike is better than the KLR for any type of pavement. The KLR shines in the dirt (yes, I had one of those, too).


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post #5 of 9 Old 08-15-2010, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhdiesel View Post
I know a Strom isn't built for long travel, such as jumps and harsh landings. But how do they do on the rougher roads? If they are half way between a KLR and an average sportbike, I should be quite happy.
It's pretty good out of the box, but you can make the suspension better on both ends. It's no 1200GS on the roughest stuff, but it'll get you there and back.

Somewhere in NH when I was small enough to fit into my 'stich:


-Tom (DL650AL2) (KA1TOX) (E-I-E-I-O)

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post #6 of 9 Old 08-16-2010, 07:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhdiesel View Post
One of the reasons I bought my old KLR was because it had suspension that would handle our less than primitive local roads. I'm not talking trails, or even dirt roads. Our main state roads are terrible at best, with potholes and cracks. I enjoyed my KLR because there was no streetbike that could come close to keeping up with me on these kinds of roads. Sportbikes just bounced around, and cruisers bottom out. I know because I hardly ever ride my Intruder because of it.

I know a Strom isn't built for long travel, such as jumps and harsh landings. But how do they do on the rougher roads? If they are half way between a KLR and an average sportbike, I should be quite happy.

Jim
Half way, no problems.
If you spend some $$ on suspension upgrades it'll keep up with KTM 990's/1200GS's on dirt ROADS.

It's pretty much on a par with much more expensive bikes provided it's not too rough. Better than the 990 on smooth stuff (the long suspension means they aren't as stable) and the GS is much heavier.

Not as good as DR/KLR 650's no matter what you do - the mass of the bike is the problem, provided you can live with being 5-10kph slower though you'll run the DR's/KLR's down in the long haul - the DL is MUCH easier on the rider running at 9/10th's.

Pete
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post #7 of 9 Old 08-16-2010, 09:20 AM
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Fixes

The front fork is under-sprung and under-damped. Comfy on smooth roads, not ideal in rougher stuff. Cheap fix is to change to a little heavier fork oil and add a little extra to help progression from reduced air capacity. Some extra bucks will get you new springs (heavier rate) and more money will get you new innnards (valves, etc.) to really optimize the suspension. The shock is OK, though long rides on rough roads may overheat it. Not that the stock bikes will toss you off, but you'll need to slow down a little. Some folks go the heavier springs, heavier fork oil, heavier shock spring, replacement shock route (lotta bucks) which ups the rough-road abilities as well as the corner-carving prowess. Me, I'm not in a hurry (and I'm cheap) so I changed the fork oil (and raised the level a bit), bumped up the rear preload, and accept the bikes limitations.
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post #8 of 9 Old 08-18-2010, 10:03 AM
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+1 to all of the above. I've taken mine down some pretty lumpy backroads and down some forest service roads in PA and it did just fine. The Tourance tires become the big limiter off road.

You'll love it - it feels like a KLR on steroids. I know, I've owed 3 KLR's over the years!
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post #9 of 9 Old 08-19-2010, 12:35 PM
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I have got both a Strom and KLR...the KLR has a much smoother suspension on poor roads but it also has a lot more vibration. But for commuting I prefer the Strom and it's fuel injection.

Steve - "The Orange Crush"
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