Suspension comfort - Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-10-2014, 08:05 AM Thread Starter
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Suspension comfort

After enduring about 50 miles of washboard pavement on a recent ride I muscled the rear shock into a more comfortable setting. When I checked my work with an inspection mirror and flashlight I saw that I'm now in the softest setting possible. I have to admit that the ride is improved as far as comfort is concerned, but I also wonder if there is any disadvantage to riding it in such an extreme setting.

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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-10-2014, 08:13 AM
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-10-2014, 09:35 AM
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I recently stiffened up the preload on my shock after some experimentation. When it was set softer I really noticed it in the turns. Especially those turns where i rolled on the throttle a little less smoothly than I should, it amplified the corrections I was making and sort of bounced through the turn, not an awesome feeling.

This feeling was compounded even more when riding 2up. I suppose it's something that one could get used to, and it wouldn't even be an issue when riding with fewer curves, or less aggressively.

TL;DR: The potential downsides depend mainly on your riding style.

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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-10-2014, 01:35 PM
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The problem with cruiser suspensions is that you can take off the preload to make them softer or stiff but you can not counter it with the other adjustments that a race suspension has.

Also, if you soften the back the way to help settle it is try to soften the front, the issue there is that many cruisers will not allow for that. Both front and rear springs need to compress at about the same distance give or take 1/2 inch.
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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 06:29 PM
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Suspension softer urges caution on curves, the bike floats when at high speed. Custom bikes are made for straight roads. I've used the pre load damper on 1st level and exaggerated the speed soon found that the curves were longer than they should, immediately returned to the factory setting is harder but more secure.
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 06:39 PM
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Odd, I had to get my bike on the second hardest setting cause I was
bouncing around all over the place!
And as someone previously mentioned, I have found my control in
turns to be much better due to not bobbing around.

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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 09:56 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the replies, friends. Not being an aggressive rider, I have not noticed the handling problems that you mentioned nor have I bottomed out on the bumps. Nevertheless, the next rainy day that we have, I plan to return it to the mid-range setting due to the potential hazards that you cite. Thanks again for sharing your knowledge and experience with me.

<::::>< er

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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 10:26 AM
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I have mine set on the 2nd stiffest setting and I feel like its perfect. Especially since I lowered it 2"s. Now I'm down closer to the road and can really feel it hugging those turns. Must have a lot to do with riders weight etc. I'm 220lbs so I can move the shock easier than a guy at 160.

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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 05:02 PM
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You should have your pre-load (Spring Adjustment) set for approx. 1/3 of total suspension travel. Once the preload is set correctly you can set the damping adjustment (controls oscillation speed) to suit your preferences.

1. Go to your owners manual for travel limits of suspension.
2. On a Vstar 1100 its 4.5" rear travel and 5.5" fork travel
3. Jack the end of the motorcycle youre adjusting or the whole bike if you prefer to do both at the same time. Ensure that the suspension is unimpeded to the full extension of travel (ie don't jack by the swingarm or fork).
4. If you're adjusting the rear suspension measure from the Axle Nut to a fixed position straight above the nut. I used the lower edge of the chrome rail on the fender. If the front travel measure between the lower triple clamp and the top of the fender.
5. Take that dimension and subtract the 1/3 of travel for the rear wheel (1.5"rear 1.8" front.) So if your dimension was 11' minus 1.5" leaves you with 9.5".
6. The 9.5" is the dimension you should be trying to meet between the same two points previously mentioned, with the motorcycle back on the ground and the normal compliment of rider(s) and gear.
7. Adjust the nut on the shock to achieve this.
8. On the forks you will be adding to or removing length from the tube above the spring. Progressive gives you a piece of schedule 40 plastic pipe to achieve this. Put a washer on the top and bottom and you're ready to go.

Most bikes come preset for a 200LB rider.

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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 05:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fulltilt1 View Post
Most bikes come preset for a 200LB rider.
I have to disagree with that. I weigh about 200 and the stock suspension on mine (front and rear) was way to soft. Even with the rear shock preload set at max, the rear end wallowed all over.

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