Author Topic: Suspension Usual Settings  (Read 530 times)

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Offline knapdog

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Suspension Usual Settings
on: 07 March, 2021, 03:19:31 PM
I'm 83kg.
My mk2 front forks have three rings showing, which is what the handbook recommends for normal riding.
The rear shock has seven settings (1 Soft to 7 Hard) plus the little S -H dial at the bottom.
I have my rear shock on number 4 ( handbook says Normal is 3).
Now I shan't be getting my measuring tape out to test my "sag" or any other part of me.
I shan't be buying Hagon, Dagon, Ohlin or Bohlin at any time soon. I doubt if I'd be able to tell the difference anyway. There must be thousands like me who just want to keep it simple with what we've been given.
All I want to know is what would be regarded as the best settings for someone of my weight for everyday riding plus what to do when I have my side panniers and top Box on for my summer tour.
Stay between the hedges!

#1

Offline jm2

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Re: Suspension Usual Settings
Reply #1 on: 07 March, 2021, 04:43:10 PM
A tape measure and assistant is the way to go because you need the static sags set right before anything else counts.  But if you're determined not to do that, try:-
Set the rear pre-load all the way until it is noticable too firm (if it gets that far) and then back it off one step.
Initally, set the rear dampening to mid to begin with (go all the way S<>H and count the turns/proportion of turn and find mid).
Initally set the front dampening to 3 rings showing.
Wait until 29th March and go out around your favourite test route (suspenion demanding route - awkward turns, hallows etc).
Tweak to suit, in stages - rear preload first, front rebound second and rear dampening third.

You'll likely find your rear preload set to harder than your expected (add more if pillion/luggage etc).  I played a lot with the fronts as I found it rather harsh and softened it up but this wasn't the answer and I think it best left a little harsh but responsive.  I can't remember where everyting is set on mine but it has been through 'suspension training' and is probably the best I can get/notice using the standard parts.  It is still budget suspension so maybe don't expect too much.

But sags is the right way to do it.
Only do it right - no bodging please.   Keeper of the failed stator list.   John.

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Offline knapdog

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Re: Suspension Usual Settings
Reply #2 on: 07 March, 2021, 04:49:09 PM
Many thanks for your considered, detailed reply.  :028:
Stay between the hedges!

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Offline YDraig

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Re: Suspension Usual Settings
Reply #3 on: 01 May, 2021, 10:55:02 AM
*Originally Posted by jm2 [+]
A tape measure and assistant is the way to go because you need the static sags set right before anything else counts.  But if you're determined not to do that, try:-
Set the rear pre-load all the way until it is noticable too firm (if it gets that far) and then back it off one step.
Initally, set the rear dampening to mid to begin with (go all the way S<>H and count the turns/proportion of turn and find mid).
Initally set the front dampening to 3 rings showing.
Wait until 29th March and go out around your favourite test route (suspenion demanding route - awkward turns, hallows etc).
Tweak to suit, in stages - rear preload first, front rebound second and rear dampening third.

You'll likely find your rear preload set to harder than your expected (add more if pillion/luggage etc).  I played a lot with the fronts as I found it rather harsh and softened it up but this wasn't the answer and I think it best left a little harsh but responsive.  I can't remember where everyting is set on mine but it has been through 'suspension training' and is probably the best I can get/notice using the standard parts.  It is still budget suspension so maybe don't expect too much.

But sags is the right way to do it.

TBH,  the above sounds like more  faff than actually measuring the static sag,  measuring the sag doesn't have to be super accurate, just ball park.  If it feels ok as is and if you have the spring on 4 at 83kg load then unless it doesn't move when you sit on it leave that where it is if you can't be bothered to measure it. It might 'feel' softer by backing off preload but it's not really, it's just more likely to bottom out.  Likewise going to high on the preload will allow the suspension to top out.  either will result in a harsh hard feeling ride. Getting the best compromise of compliance without bottoming or topping out is the goal.  To do that the suspension at both ends needs to be in the designed sweet spot for the spring and dampers: that is usually somewhere between 25%-30% of the damper stroke.  Damping itself is much more subjective and dependent on riding style and road surface, as well as load.  83kg seems lightish to me so probably more rebound damping than midsetting and compression damping less than midsetting.  Go for a ride, think about how well the suspension is  performing and which parameter you might change to improve it. Change just that one thing before the next ride. rinse and repeat until you know that it's the best compromise you can get.