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I Need Help With Suspension Setup

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Hey cool I am the first guy to put a topic here I wonder if I recieve a free track lesson at Watkins Glen (home track)



Anyway here it the question that myself and all my riding buddies want to know. How do you go about setting up your suspension?


One of my best riding friends Rides an RC51 and I ride a TL1000R. Both apparently have fully adjustable suspension but we leave them at stock settings. I have not been able to have people explain what good suspension should feel like and then I have not had them tell me what feeling the different settings should change. All this said I am only asking for help in this field.


Oh yeah mabye weights would help as well.


I am 180 read that 195 LBS at 6 ft tall, and my friend is 150 soaking wet at 5'9'' :(

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I'm no expert but the way I go about it is this.


First set the sag so the bike is sitting properly. A good starting point would be 30mm in front and 25mm in back. That is a starting point, not a hard and fast rule.


The way to set the sag is to take a measurment front and rear with the suspension fully extended. You need to measure from a fixed point on the bike to a moveable point on the suspension. In the rear you might go from a point on the fender to the axle. Front might be from the pinch bolt on the triple clamp to the axle. It doesn't matter where you measure from just so it's two fixed points you can measure accurately and repeatably.


Next you need to measure from the same points with the rider "in gear" sitting on the bike in riding position while a third person steadies the bike.


Subtract the second measuerement from the first and that will be the sag, adjust te spring preload accordingly.


Next is to set the rebound dampening in the forks. Back the adjuster off quite a bit and push down on the front end and let it spring back up. It should spring up and then settle down some. Increse the rebound dampening a click or two at a time until you get to a point where the front end will spring up, but NOT settle back down. That will get you in the ball park.


Once the front is set, have someone steady the bike while you push down firmly on the seat and tank while standing beside the bike and let it rebound up freely. You want the front and rear to be fairly balanced, with the rear maybe a bit slower.


The compression dampening is that last thing to mess with and I'm not going to be much help there as that seems to be the one adjustment that is most dependent on rider preference. I personally don't like a lot of compression because I want the suspension to be able to move quickly to soak up sharp bumps. I would say start at the lighter end of the range and gradually increase it until it feels too harsh, then back it off a click or two.


once you get your base settings, write them down for future reference. When you want to try changing something after that, only change ONE adjustment at a time and WRITE DOWN the change!!!!


I'm sure someone who actually knows what they are doing with this stuff will be along shortly to point out my errors, but until then I think that will put you in the ball park to have things working fairly well.

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