Suspension mods for MX
Posted September 26, 2000 - 03:03 PM
They kept the stock fork springs (46) and replaced the 50 rear spring with a 52. I wouldn't have made the mods for just trails but I was interested in being able to jump better.
Beyond the obvious observations that the bike now doesn't bottom over big jumps I noticed a couple of side benefits.
1) The front end rotates up much better. This is especially helpful for slower speed jumps or step ups where you want to get the front end up. I was surprised at how much easier it is to get the front end up. It now comes up naturally.
2) The bike steered with much greater precision. Is this my imagination? Has anybody else had this same experience? Anyway, I felt like the bike was much easier to place on the track.
3) The bike felt alot lighter. This should be kind of obvious, but the weight of the WR really was overpowering the suspension. So the bike felt like an overweight pig. Now it feels 20-30 pounds lighter. Kind of like how more HP makes a bike feel lighter.
Overall, I have always been quite intimidated by the size, weight and top heavy-ness of the WR, as I am only 5'8". But this time around I felt comfortable on the bike. It was almost like I knew what I was doing. Scary
I may end up paying the price when I go trail riding. But the compliance was pretty good. So I don't think the penalty will be too great. I figured I can always trail ride with a stiff suspension. But I can't MX with a soft one.
Question for MOTO GREG - Did they make that double at Elsinore smaller? Because there were revisions to the track since about 1-2 months ago.
Posted September 27, 2000 - 09:04 PM
Posted September 27, 2000 - 09:54 PM
From what I have learned the only way you can fix things is to get your forks revalved. Going to a higher fork oil level will improve things. Try 100mm-105mm if you don't revalve. This will help things.
This is the problem with the clickers. They essentially don't do squat. (yes they work a little, but only for small oil flow rates - small bumps)
The cartridge style forks use two one way valves. Like a one way valve on a air pump or diving mask. But instead of using rubber for sealing, bikes use metal disks to allow the flow of oil. Look at a race tech ad, you will see this valve (they show it without the disks present). The only way to get a significant change in the dampening (at high oil flow rates) is to redo the disks so that less oil flows past them at any given pressure.
This is the bottom line with the clickers.
They do not affect the pressure that these discs exert on the valve body. They only affect a by-pass valve. This by-pass valve only flows a small amount of oil, so your ability to affect the dampening is limited, with essentially no control for high oil flow levels that you experience with big jumps.
Before I got the forks revalved, I had hoped to be able to raise the fork oil level and have this fix things, but this alone did not completely solve the bottoming. With the higher oil level I had the clickers in all the way. But there was little improvement from 4 clicks to 0 clicks, so the only alternative was to revalve. I had also hoped to be able to use thicker oil, like with the old dampening rod style forks. But never investigated this. If you don't want to revalve you may try going with the 7.5wt synthetic Spectro oil when you change oil and go to a higher level.
The clickers only offer a small amount of adjustment and only for low only flow levels. You may feel a significant difference in overall feel when you use the clickers. But going from full soft to full stiff on the clickers will make less and less difference as you push the forks.
So here is a test to see if you need to revalve.
1) Raise your oil level to 100-105mm
2) Turn the compression clicker all the way in.
3)Find the most punishing jump that you make.
If you still bottom, then you need to revalve.