Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Springville, New York
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Versys Suspension Improvement ... My Way
First of all ... I have to tell you that I usually don't share improvements that I discover in search of the perfect machine ... Mainly because it is one mans perception ... And the other thing that I must say before I go further ... is I grew up racing motocross ... then hare scrambles, then enduros, then ( when family came ) off road dice runs ... well you get the picture on my back ground ...
My criteria for a good suspension for what I am using this motorcycle is unimproved roads, dirt and gravel roads, two track ... Based on usage I was looking for the most compliant ride possible, utilizing maximum suspension travel, without bone jarring bottoming on the occasional unseen pothole ... or the like ... Being that I don't want to reinvent the wheel ... or break the bank ... I took a very practical approach to what I wanted to achieve ... I was running my suspension at minimum setting on both ends ( meaning minimum preload on the springs ... and minimu rebound on the dampening ) ... I did this for approx 5000 mile to be sure the suspension was totally broke in in all aspects ... Where I ended up was on the rear shock max rebound ( turned all the way in ) and second notch from weakest on the spring preload ... On the front forks ... I ended up with max rebound also ... and seven turns in from the weakest setting ( there are 14 turns available ) so I was half way on the preload ... It worked OK ... however on the occasional pothole or abrupt obstacle the front end would bottom with a teeth clenching jolt and loud bang ... Of all the variables in changing the suspension ... I went with the cheapest way out to to correct the front end bottoming ... which is oil viscosity ... and air space ... or air gap ... which for those of you who don't know ... The air space left at the top of the fork tube with the fork totally collapsed ... without the spring ... the stock setting is asymmetrical as the right leg does all the dampening ... the left legs job is only to house a spring to help support the front end ... stock setting is 3 inches from the top on the right leg ... 2.6 inches from the top on the left leg ... I chose to remove a 1/2 inch of air gap on both legs to make the forks firm up more toward the end of the stroke ... 2.5 inch's on the right ... 2.1 inches on the left ... In addition to this ... I felt that ... both the rebound and compression dampening needed to increased ... so ... knowing that stock viscosity is 10wt ... I mixed a 50/50 mixture of ATF (10wt ) and 15/40 shell rotella ( base 15wt ) to achieve a 12.5 wt ... 1 pint of each total of one quart ... which is enough to do both legs ...
I have to tell ya fellas ... I feel I nailed it on the first try ...
Previous to the Versys ... I had a DL1000 Vstrom ... Which stock had a way better ride than the Versys ... after the mod ... hands down ... the Versys has a better feel for the road and now has even a better ride quality than the Vstrom ... the only weakness now in my opinion is the rear shock ... Don't get me wrong ... it works well ... however ... If major money needs to be spent ... It is on the rear shock ... separate the compression and rebound damping ... and it could use more in both categories ... In my opinion the spring rate is spot on for a 200lb rider plus or minus 20lb ... I invite you to try these settings and give me a critique
Last edited by freewheeler; 08-18-2010 at 07:28 PM.