changing Gen 3 shock to an R1... - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 02:36 PM Thread Starter
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changing Gen 3 shock to an R1...

I have an R1 shock on my '08 in AZ, and HAD one on the GREEN HORNET (which died last summer), but re-installed the OEM shock before the insurance company got the '09, keeping the R1 shock, and I wanted it on my GREEN HORNET TOO even tho' the NEW shock is PDG....

Last year I TRIED to replace the stocker, but didn't want to cut off the frame bracket that the remote adjuster attaches to at THAT time, so I put it back to stock, even tho' that involved MOST of two days in the garage-shop!

I decided to get back in there, cut-off the offending piece, and mount my R1 shock, so Wednesday I put the bike on stands and started removing stuff (all BECAUSE Kawasaki has wrapped the hydraulic line between the remote adjuster and shock around the frame, necessitating pretty much stripping MOST stuff off it.

I posted up about this last year so I won't duplicate the posts, but start w/ this pic of the shock FINALLY close to where it can be removed.



This is the piece you need to cut-off as it will 'foul' the reservoir on the shock ALMOST immediately when it compresses.



Here's a view looking directly AT the piece from the right side of the V.



There's the main wiring harness running just above this, so you'll need to be very vigilant at holding it out of harms-way when cutting (I used two different air cut-offs for this job), and here's a view from above of the first cut,



and here's a view of the second (horizontal) cut.



There's NOT a lot of room in there, so I got the cuts to where I could move the piece back-and-forth till it broke loose, dressed the sharp edges w/ a file, then added some Tremclad paint to the bare metal.



To support the bike while removing the shock I used this piece I made from some scrap lumber to 'cradle' the muffler



and used it on top of my large car-jack like this (pics from working on my Gen 1 V)





and w/ the rear supported on a stand, it ONLY needs a SLIGHT lift to un-load the shock bolts, and easily remove the shock (AFTER untangling that hydraulic line I mentioned earlier). THUS, after spending HOURS getting to this point, now replacing shocks is a 30 minute job, MOST of which is setting-up various supports/ jacks....

Here's a pic of the R1 shock installed - NOW all I needed to do was to replace all the stuff I'd HAD to remove to get in there, another 5 or 6 hours!



And here's a pic taken 5 or 6 hours later....

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Last edited by fasteddiecopeman; 05-07-2016 at 02:40 PM.
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 02:55 PM Thread Starter
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You probably noticed that a trim-piece is missing above the shock. That piece has to be trimmed so that the R1 reservoir doesn't contact it when compressed, and I wanted to ride it right away, so I'll trim later...!



Would I recommend doing this mod...?

I didn't keep a time-line, but, start-to-finish I figure was probably 10 hours.

The R1 shock is DEFINITELY an improvement over stock, but IF you asked me to do it for you, here's MY demands:
1. bring it to my shop here in Kelowna;
2. have your R1 (or other aftermarket...) shock ready (PROPER bushings, etc); and
3. bring $1,000 cash!!!
Turn-around time two days.

Now that I've done it, IF I ever need to replace my shock - I WILL NOT replace that stock one, UNLESS I get another hydraulic-line on it so it does NOT need to be wrapped around frame-tubes, etc...! It will be aftermarket ONLY!


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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 06:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
You probably noticed that a trim-piece is missing above the shock. That piece has to be trimmed so that the R1 reservoir doesn't contact it when compressed, and I wanted to ride it right away, so I'll trim later...!



Would I recommend doing this mod...?

I didn't keep a time-line, but, start-to-finish I figure was probably 10 hours.

The R1 shock is DEFINITELY an improvement over stock, but IF you asked me to do it for you, here's MY demands:
1. bring it to my shop here in Kelowna;
2. have your R1 (or other aftermarket...) shock ready (PROPER bushings, etc); and
3. bring $1,000 cash!!!
Turn-around time two days.

Now that I've done it, IF I ever need to replace my shock - I WILL NOT replace that stock one, UNLESS I get another hydraulic-line on it so it does NOT need to be wrapped around frame-tubes, etc...! It will be aftermarket ONLY!

Is that USD or Canadian Tire money??
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 11:07 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
...Now that I've done it, IF I ever need to replace my shock - I WILL NOT replace that stock one, UNLESS I get another hydraulic-line on it so it does NOT need to be wrapped around frame-tubes, etc...! It will be aftermarket ONLY!

Came up w/ an idea for any of you who'd like to install an R1 shock: as that hose on the OEM shock (the one that's causing all the trouble BECAUSE it's wrapped around the frame tubes) is attached at the top of the OEM shock - be prepared for some leakage, then either remove it or CUT it and unwrangle it, then, except for cutting that frame bracket off, you're DONE!

-

Quote:
Originally Posted by onewizard View Post
Is that USD or Canadian Tire money??
Yes!


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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-07-2016, 11:43 PM
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-09-2016, 09:58 AM
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Mr. Fasteddie,

I have an '08 V, and was thinking about putting on a R1 Shock. Do you know of anyone doing this, but with a shorter spring, so that the bike would be lower by about an inch or so (without the use of a lowering link)?

I'm not real enthused about how my lowering link makes the shock "out of line" from the swing arm and frame. It looks a bit like a Picasso painting.

Thanks!

Dave
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-10-2016, 12:41 PM Thread Starter
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So far I can FEEL improvement from the R1 shock, and yesterday I rode about 220 kms w/ a passenger (who's ridden w/ me before). Her assessment is that the ride is MUCH improved.

-

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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-10-2016, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trialsguy View Post
Mr. Fasteddie,

I have an '08 V, and was thinking about putting on a R1 Shock. Do you know of anyone doing this, but with a shorter spring, so that the bike would be lower by about an inch or so (without the use of a lowering link)?

I'm not real enthused about how my lowering link makes the shock "out of line" from the swing arm and frame. It looks a bit like a Picasso painting.

Thanks!

Dave
Dave - sorry, but I don't know of anyone who's added an R1 shock w/ a shorter spring, altho' it PROBABLY could be done. Perhaps call one of the the companies such as RaceTech and ask them.

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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-10-2016, 06:38 PM
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You can simply tripod the bike, using your flow jack, on the jack placed under the foot peg, the kickstand, and the front wheel. I removed the lowering kit my bike came with this way.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-24-2016, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
Came up w/ an idea for any of you who'd like to install an R1 shock: as that hose on the OEM shock (the one that's causing all the trouble BECAUSE it's wrapped around the frame tubes) is attached at the top of the OEM shock - be prepared for some leakage,
Are you saying that it leaks or could leak although it has not been cut?

Quote:
then either remove it or CUT it and unwrangle it, then, except for cutting that frame bracket off, you're DONE!
If this means that the removal of all the other parts (side covers, frame covers, battery box, rear fender, etc., etc.) could be avoided, that's music to my ears!

Do you know if there's lots of pressure in the OEM shock? I can just imagine shock oil spraying all over the Versys, on me and also all over the rest of the garage LOL!

I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-25-2016, 01:51 PM Thread Starter
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No it doesn't leak UNLESS you remove it, or CUT it. I loosened my hydraulic line (which only OOZED fluid) the FIRST time I tried the install shortly after getting my '15, and then put everything back to stock till I did it PROPERLY this season, so it doesn't APPEAR to be under any great pressure.

You'll need to remove the side plastic ABOVE the shock to access the bracket where the remote adjuster attaches to the frame, then grind or cut the bracket off - be VERY CAREFUL NOT TO CUT THE WIRING HARNESS which is quite close. Look for the wire loom in the top center of this pic, above and right of the bracket:



and just right of the yellow pen-end, below the frame tube.



AND, of course, this is how it looks NOW...!


Ed
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Last edited by fasteddiecopeman; 08-25-2016 at 01:55 PM.
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-25-2016, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
No it doesn't leak UNLESS you remove it, or CUT it. I loosened my hydraulic line (which only OOZED fluid) the FIRST time I tried the install shortly after getting my '15, and then put everything back to stock till I did it PROPERLY this season, so it doesn't APPEAR to be under any great pressure.
That's good. The service manual shows 232 PSI. I noticed this morning that the hydraulic line seems to be bolterd onto the adjuster. I'll loosen it slowly and see what happens.

Quote:
You'll need to remove the side plastic ABOVE the shock to access the bracket where the remote adjuster attaches to the frame, then grind or cut the bracket off - be VERY CAREFUL NOT TO CUT THE WIRING HARNESS which is quite close. Look for the wire loom in the top center of this pic, above and right of the bracket:

and just right of the yellow pen-end, below the frame tube.
I hear you. There's lots of wiring and tubing in that area.

Quote:
AND, of course, this is how it looks NOW...!
Looks good! On a scale of 1 to 10, if the OEM shock was a 4, what score would you attribute to your R1 shock?

Note: Did you replace the front fork oil with ATF yet? I know that you did this on your previous Versys but am not sure about this one.

I too have been using ATF with most of my previous bikes and will do the same on my Versys (this winter). I will need to fabricate a rod guide case wrench to replace the OEM 57001-1744 tool. Di you make one yet? This guy had a good idea.

Thank you!

I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.

Last edited by quexpress; 08-26-2016 at 09:02 AM. Reason: Typo
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-25-2016, 02:31 PM
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FWIW, I replaced the factory shock on my gen 3 with a Wilbers 640, and I find it to be a huge improvement. I thought the factory rear suspension was really harsh, and the Wilbers is much smoother.
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-26-2016, 01:35 PM Thread Starter
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from quexpress: "Looks good! On a scale of 1 to 10, if the OEM shock was a 4, what score would you attribute to your R1 shock?

Note: Did you replace the front fork oil with ATF yet? I know that you did this on your previous Versys but am not sure about this one.

I too have been using ATF with most of my previous bikes and will do the same on my Versys (this winter). I will need to fabricate a rod guide case wrench to replace the OEM 57001-1744 tool. Di you make one yet? This guy had a good idea.

Thank you!"

The R1 shock is WAY-Y-Y better than the stocker, but give it a number...? Probably an 8 (keeping higher for Ohlins...).

Yes on the ATF. When Kawi replaced my fork seals under warranty, I supplied the ATF for filling them. Another FWIW - I added "Fork Skins" yesterday, hopefully to protect the seals....


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"...I will need to fabricate a rod guide case wrench to replace the OEM 57001-1744 tool. Di you make one yet? This guy had a good idea...."

Not really sure what you are referring to...?

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post #16 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-26-2016, 08:56 PM
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Yes on the ATF. When Kawi replaced my fork seals under warranty, I supplied the ATF for filling them. Another FWIW - I added "Fork Skins" yesterday, hopefully to protect the seals....
I've never used them but they certainly look like they would help.

I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.
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post #17 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-26-2016, 09:07 PM
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Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
"...I will need to fabricate a rod guide case wrench to replace the OEM 57001-1744 tool. Di you make one yet? This guy had a good idea...."

Not really sure what you are referring to...?
As shown on page 13-14 of the service manual, to change the oil in the left front fork, the rod guide case must be removed from the inner fork tube with Kawasaki tool 57001-1744. This tool costs over $150.00 US.

I'll clone this guy's idea:


I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.
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post #18 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-26-2016, 10:47 PM
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$1000 for 10 hours of fun? I'll do it for $200 in about 4 hours, ready the next day.

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post #19 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-27-2016, 04:52 PM Thread Starter
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Good deal for $200 invader, except it's a long haul from BC to the Kap...!


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post #20 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-01-2016, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
No it doesn't leak UNLESS you remove it, or CUT it. I loosened my hydraulic line (which only OOZED fluid) the FIRST time I tried the install shortly after getting my '15, and then put everything back to stock till I did it PROPERLY this season, so it doesn't APPEAR to be under any great pressure.
You are right! It does not appear to have much pressure. I unbolted mine from both ends. It just dripped a tiny bit.



Quote:
You'll need to remove the side plastic ABOVE the shock to access the bracket where the remote adjuster attaches to the frame, then grind or cut the bracket off - be VERY CAREFUL NOT TO CUT THE WIRING HARNESS which is quite close. Look for the wire loom in the top center of this pic, above and right of the bracket:

and just right of the yellow pen-end, below the frame tube.
Your tips, instructions, etc. made this so much easier. I followed your lead and removed everything from the right side.

This is the end result (with a Road Star Warrior coil spring).



Thank you very much!

I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.
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