Chain Tension and Shock Performance - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-19-2009, 09:32 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Texas
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Chain Tension and Shock Performance

Hi All,

Just got a new 2008 Versys last week. Some dealers near Houston are making some screamin' deals.

This may be the best bike ever for the Texas Hill Country!

I just wanted to pass along some observations about the suspension on the bike.

I did a quick check around the bike after getting it home but did not adjust anything. I took it out for a 20 mile loop and noticed that the shock and the forks were very stiff feeling. The bike did not want to stay set in the turns.

When I got back I began adjusting things.

The manual says 25 - 35mm on the chain slack. You definitely want the 35mm end of that range. The swingarm travel creates quite a bit of chain stretch as it compresses through its travel. I'm wondering how much of what I've read about the harsh shock was due to chains being too tight. From the dealer there was only about 15mm of deflection on mine.

The side stand unloads the rear wheel nicely. From the dealer the shock preload was 3 from maximum. The bike had no static sag on this setting. I began reducing the preload and checking the static sag. I usually try to get 15mm or so of static sag. I was able to get close with the preload adjuster on the minimum setting.

I weight 230lbs and ride single. I haven't measured rider sag yet as I need another set of hands. However the shock spring feels plenty stiff for my weight.

I took 1 click out of the rebound on the shock.

I took 1/2 turn out of the fork rebound.

Hope to test it again this weekend.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-19-2009, 11:36 AM
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Henderson, cty, TX
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I have my rear shock on minimum preload also, have not messed with rebound at all. I am about 170 lbs. I should probably take the preload out of the forks as well but haven't got "roun-to-it"??
I bought my '08 from Wulf's for less than $5K in the spring. Lot of bike for the money :>)
I am in NE TX, we should set up a "meet & greet" somewhere in central TX as there are several V riders on this forum.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-24-2009, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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Well I took the bike out for the first time after the adjustments. Its quite a bit better now. Settles into the corners much better. The suspension could definitely use some help. The fork and shock are equally as harsh on square edge stuff (high speed obstacles).

Its pretty amazing actually that the jolt from the handlebars is almost identical to the jolt from the seat. I think the shock spring is probably 10% too firm.

I hope the shock is re-buildable. It would be interesting to see what could be done with the stock valving.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-29-2009, 08:33 PM
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you'll be interested in reading this...
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