Suspension Settings Thread - 650 - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 11Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-02-2017, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
twowheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 3,353
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Garage
Suspension Settings Thread - 650

Like to start a thread for people to share their suspension setup. Be sure to also list your weight (fully dressed for the ride).

I have found an improvement in ride quality by going down 1 from default in rear preload, left rebound in default setting. Default was too harsh for me on rough roads and did not seem to be using much of the suspension travel.

Would like to see what I can do for the front, may try to firm it up a bit as front travel is all being used in default setting and occasionally bottoms out. (tie a wire tie around front suspension to see how much travel is being used)

195lb and sporty riding in mostly a metro environment on roads with lots of frost heaves, potholes, road construction and other road hazards.

Comments and suggestions please.
aboyandhisversys likes this.

Last edited by twowheels; 07-02-2017 at 10:25 PM.
twowheels is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-03-2017, 12:22 PM
Super Moderator
 
fasteddiecopeman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kelowna, BC - summer; Florence, AZ - winter
Posts: 17,821
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Be a GOOD idea to specify which "Generation" your V is, and whether or not you've set your "sag".
Jaes1, quexpress, Kzen and 1 others like this.

Ed
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


'08 V AZ, '15 V650LT BC
Ride to D2D 2013, June '13

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2015, June '15

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2016, June '16

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
fasteddiecopeman is offline  
post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 05:16 AM
Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Poland
Posts: 240
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Another good idea for anyone setting damping - make sure your fork oil is fresh. Changing it out is not something specified in regular service intervals so it's something many owners don't do, but it's important. If you're over 10k miles with your current fork oil, get it changed - you'll be amazed how much more composed and controlled your ride is. And then you may find that whatever damping settings you had, they need to be adjusted.

2015 Versys 650
_Big_Mac_ is offline  
 
post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 04:36 PM
Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Poland
Posts: 240
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
I gave it to a shop, don't know. The mechanic mentioned it was tricky, though it was his first contact with 2015 Versys' Separate Function Forks...

2015 Versys 650
_Big_Mac_ is offline  
post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-04-2017, 06:31 PM
Member
 
Smiley's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Elgin County SW Ontario
Posts: 1,158
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Garage
Ok, I'll weigh in here (pardon the pun). All suspension settings are a compromise for me: in cold weather gear, I'm maybe 195 lb, in summer gear 185 lb. Except maybe I've added the tank bag and cameras etc or my dry bag with a weekend supply of necessaries. So I compromise because I don't feel like changing settings for every occasion.

My riding is mostly rural, secondary roads mostly with occasional forays into the big cities.

Currently, my settings for the front are preload @ 6 turns out (all numbers are from fully compressed). Damping is set 2 turns out. I just went back to this setting because the front end was feeling "wooden" in sharp turns and wanted to run wide at the "harder" setting that I tried. The difference is night and day. The difference that a well set up suspension makes is truly confidence inspiring, it changes the bike.

Rear currently set to #2 position (2nd softest), damping @ 4 clicks out. I am still working on the rear setting, after changing the front.

For every action, there is a reaction. Change the front suspension and the rear reacts too, often requiring adjustment if the fork setting was adjusted by a more than a few clicks.

Rider body position counts for a lot too. I learned a lot riding my loaded Concours that moving my weight forward and loading the fork to compensate for the rear end weight dramatically changed the handling. That technique also works well for me on the V. In tight stuff, I like to shift my weight forward to load the front end a bit.

My point is that, for me, suspension settings are a moving target that can change with season and circumstance. So I compromise because although I check tire pressure, oil, lights etc regularly, I live with the current suspension settings.

Until I start feckin' around again... sigh.

Gen1, 2007 V
aemacleod likes this.

Last edited by Smiley; 07-05-2017 at 06:18 AM.
Smiley is offline  
post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-05-2017, 04:36 PM
Super Moderator
 
fasteddiecopeman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kelowna, BC - summer; Florence, AZ - winter
Posts: 17,821
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by twowheels View Post
When you changed your fork oil was it dirty? What tools do you need for this - to open forks?
YES - it was dirty, and you need several VERY specialized tools to take apart the forks. I 'made' mine for the two Gen 1s but haven't done the '15s MYSELF (Kawi did it under warranty when the fork-seals blew out).

I DID use ATF as fork oil EVERY time, however. (An old enduro riders 'trick'.)

Ed
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


'08 V AZ, '15 V650LT BC
Ride to D2D 2013, June '13

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2015, June '15

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2016, June '16

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
fasteddiecopeman is offline  
post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-05-2017, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
twowheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 3,353
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
YES - it was dirty, and you need several VERY specialized tools to take apart the forks. I 'made' mine for the two Gen 1s but haven't done the '15s MYSELF (Kawi did it under warranty when the fork-seals blew out).

I DID use ATF as fork oil EVERY time, however. (An old enduro riders 'trick'.)
I think I will add to this to my planned off season work that includes valves. Has anyone written a how to for the forks? I did this on my Kawi 500 many years ago and found it easy but as I understand the forks on the Versys are different. Found a $1 turkey baster is ideal to set fork oil level and is just as effective and easy to use as expensive motion pro tool for this. Just mark side of turkey baster with marker for correct level. My concern is how to get the top of fork off and should I replace seals as a preventative measure. They are not leaking.

Last edited by twowheels; 07-05-2017 at 05:23 PM.
twowheels is offline  
post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-05-2017, 05:31 PM
Super Moderator
 
fasteddiecopeman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kelowna, BC - summer; Florence, AZ - winter
Posts: 17,821
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by twowheels View Post
I think I will add to this to my planned off season work that includes valves. Has anyone written a how to for the forks? I did this on my Kawi 500 many years ago and found it easy but as I understand the forks on the Versys are different. Found a $1 turkey baster is ideal to set fork oil level and is just as effective and easy to use as expensive motion pro tool for this. Just mark side of turkey baster with marker for correct level. My concern is how to get the top of fork off and should I replace seals as a preventative measure. They are not leaking.
I have pics of when I did my Gen 1s, but need to re-size them and move them to Photobucket, then I'll post them up. These pics include the two tools I fabbed-up.

Getting the fluid level correct is the EASY part of the job!
twowheels likes this.

Ed
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


'08 V AZ, '15 V650LT BC
Ride to D2D 2013, June '13

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2015, June '15

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2016, June '16

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
fasteddiecopeman is offline  
post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-06-2017, 09:36 AM
Member
 
quexpress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 1,005
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by twowheels View Post
I think I will add to this to my planned off season work that includes valves. Has anyone written a how to for the forks? I did this on my Kawi 500 many years ago and found it easy but as I understand the forks on the Versys are different. Found a $1 turkey baster is ideal to set fork oil level and is just as effective and easy to use as expensive motion pro tool for this. Just mark side of turkey baster with marker for correct level. My concern is how to get the top of fork off and should I replace seals as a preventative measure. They are not leaking.
This winter, I have replaced the oil in my 2015 Versys 650 front forks. Compared to other USD forks that I have done in the past (Honda, Suzuki, etc.), these were very easy to do. No special tools were required other than one used to remove the top spring "holder" in the left fork. Rather than order the expensive Kawasaki tool, I managed to fabricate one. I will soon post pictures and a few details in another post.

Quote:
My concern is how to get the top of fork off
For Gen 3, a 30mm socket fit on top of the fork cap.

Quote:
should I replace seals as a preventative measure. They are not leaking.
I wouldn't.

I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.
quexpress is offline  
post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-06-2017, 04:30 PM
Super Moderator
 
fasteddiecopeman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kelowna, BC - summer; Florence, AZ - winter
Posts: 17,821
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by quexpress View Post
... I will soon post pictures and a few details in another post....
Looking forward to seeing your pics of doing Gen 3 forks (I just posted pics from doing my two Gen 1s).
quexpress likes this.

Ed
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


'08 V AZ, '15 V650LT BC
Ride to D2D 2013, June '13

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2015, June '15

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2016, June '16

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
fasteddiecopeman is offline  
post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-06-2017, 07:24 PM
Member
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: Glenburn, Maine
Posts: 39
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Garage
I set mine by the book. I have a 09 650. I am 140#. with all my gear about 150# total. I set my forks at 7 turns out 1 3/4 turns out on the dampener. The rear preload is on 5 from softest and 5 clicks out on the dampener. Air is set at 34psi front and 36psi rear. Rides nice! Wheelies in first pretty easy.
Samuelc is offline  
post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-09-2017, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
twowheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 3,353
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Garage
I've been playing around with my suspension settings over the last week or so. I found I've been able to make a significant improvement over the default settings, at least for my own tastes and 195lb rider weight, by firming up the front a little. It really changes the bikes personality. Still making adjustments which I'll put on this thread when I get to my final settings. While the setting of preload via sag formula is probably a good place to start I think you just really have to play around with the settings, in particular preload first, then rebound, until you get to what feels best for the riding you do. I've also found through my experimentation I have to leave it at a setting for a while to get a full appreciation of a setting. For example I initially liked a softer settings for the comfort and bump absorption, but when you start riding faster and in corners they make the bike feel less stable and planted. I've found the more you adjust, a little at a time, the more you learn what different adjustments feel like, which helps in the fine tuning process. So far it has been more of a adjust and evaluate and repeat again and again process more than an adjust once and forget about it kind of thing.
Smiley likes this.

Last edited by twowheels; 07-09-2017 at 09:47 PM.
twowheels is offline  
post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-10-2017, 12:12 AM
Member
 
motorboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: South Louisiana
Posts: 307
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Garage
Give me something to adjust and I'll play with it weather it needs it or not--2016 bike and I'm 200lbs- rear tried a few extras clicks like I do on all my bikes Versys did not like it to harsh back to stock- front ended up with half turn more preload and one full turn of rebound-I found anymore preload on the front and it feels chopper-ist wheel kind of flops around

Deep in Cajun Country
motorboy is offline  
post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-10-2017, 09:24 AM
Member
 
quexpress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 1,005
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
Looking forward to seeing your pics of doing Gen 3 forks (I just posted pics from doing my two Gen 1s).
Gen3 Versys 650 Ė Front Fork Oil Change

I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.
quexpress is offline  
post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-10-2017, 09:36 AM
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 102
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
So ... Reading this thread it sounds like Kawasaki may have over suspended this bike for the "average" 170# rider? Good news for those 220# types
Urbanengineer likes this.
troop is offline  
post #16 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-10-2017, 02:03 PM
Super Moderator
 
fasteddiecopeman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kelowna, BC - summer; Florence, AZ - winter
Posts: 17,821
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by quexpress View Post
Thanks for posting that up. I've taken note, and will try to duplicate what you did!

-

Ed
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


'08 V AZ, '15 V650LT BC
Ride to D2D 2013, June '13

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2015, June '15

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2016, June '16

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
fasteddiecopeman is offline  
post #17 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-10-2017, 02:37 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 7
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Great thread. I have not touched mine really, but since im going on a longer trip with bags this summer i need to adjust it.

Since i bought it second hand i don't know the default positions, what are they? And how many "steps" can u take on back adjuster?
Cire is offline  
post #18 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-10-2017, 05:39 PM
Member
 
quexpress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 1,005
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
Thanks for posting that up. I've taken note, and will try to duplicate what you did!

-
You're most welcome!
I'm sure that you will not have a problem fabricating that tool.
onewizard likes this.

I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.
quexpress is offline  
post #19 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-12-2017, 06:59 PM
Member
 
quexpress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 1,005
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Smile Suspension settings on my 2015 Versys 650 ABS

These are the settings for my 2015 Versys 650 with loaded luggage (topcase and sidecases) + me with all the gear (208 lbs).

Front fork sag - 42 mm
Front spring preload Ė 5 turns out
Damping - 1 turn out from full clockwise position + 5 wt Bel-Ray fork oil

Rear R1 shock sag - 10.5 mm
Rear R1 shock with Shortened 2002-2009 Roadstar Warrior shock spring
Spring preload set at the lowest position
Rebound damping: 12 clicks counterclockwise with flat blade screwdriver (standard)
Fast compression damping: 3 turns counterclockwise with 12mm wrench (standard)
Slow compression damping: 12 clicks counterclockwise with small hex wrench (standard)

================================================== ======
Notes:
The Roadstar OEM spring is 725 lbs/in (12.95 kg/mm). The Stock Versys rear shock spring is said to be 940 lbs/in (16.7865). IMHO thatís WAY too harsh for a 200 lb rider. The 725 lbs/in Roadstar spring on the R1 shock is just right for me.

For my type of riding (mainly easy touring) I find the front suspension too harsh. It still tends to bounce over sharp bumps instead of absorbing them.

When Iím riding with a passenger, with both the topcase and the side cases loaded, my Versys then seems to absorb the bumps better. The heavier loaded weight then gives me the impression that the ride is much smoother than when Iím riding solo.

IMHO the fork spring on my Gen3 Versys 650 has been set up at Kawasaki for a much heavier rider than I (208 lbs with all the gear). It is too stiff.

Later on, when I feel up to it, Iíll deal with that harsh front spring issue.

I still have a full deck.
I just shuffle slower.
quexpress is offline  
post #20 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-19-2017, 04:27 AM Thread Starter
Member
 
twowheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 3,353
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Garage
Final settings after experimenting although I will probably never stop experimenting completely. For my weight I've found firming up the preload both front and back offered a big improvement, especially the front though. Firming up the front instantly made the bike feel more planted leaned over in corners. These settings are probably too firm though if you ride dirt roads, particularly at slower speeds.

Bike: Versys 650 MK2, should also apply to MK1 as suspension is the same, on MK3 forks and shock are from different manufacturer
Rider: 195 lb fully geared up
Front: 6 turns out (one firmer than default), 1.5 turns out for rebound
Rear: Second firmest preload, (third firmest setting is default) 3 turns out on rebound

Default setting is for 150lb rider according to manual.

Last edited by twowheels; 07-19-2017 at 04:34 AM.
twowheels is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Tags
settings, suspension

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Kawasaki Versys Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome