First step to upgrading suspension?

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8/16/2020 11:44 AM

I’ve always just run the stock stuff and never invested heavily into suspension outside of normal maintenance... but I’m wanting to now.

My question is, where do I start and how much do I need to spend to make a noticeable difference?

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8/16/2020 11:51 AM
Edited Date/Time: 8/16/2020 11:52 AM

Start with riding it and deciding what it does that you like and dislike.
Find a reputable tuner
Send to tuner or drop off is someone local is good and let them know your likes and dislikes with it currently.
They will ask your weight, age, riding ability and type of riding you do
They will finish and send back to you
Follow their sag recommendations
Ride bike
Check sag
If there are still things you are having trouble with, call the tuner and see what they recommend for adjustments
If those don’t work, most tuners with have you take the suspension back to them so they can put in some new setting for you.

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2017 RMZ450
2005 YZ250-sold :,(
1998 YZ250
2005 KX250F

80% of the time it works every time
IG @hamdaddyof2 & @2HRacing
Thanks to : Factory Effex, N2Dirt, Acerbis, DT1, Fasthouse, Matix, FMF, ASV, 100% & Mika Metals

8/16/2020 12:16 PM

Factory Connection has always been the best for me personally

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8/16/2020 12:41 PM

Decide if you can actually tell the difference between good suspension and bad suspension.. a well set up set of stock kit will work better than any big bucks purchase that is badly set up.

Get stock stuff set up for your weight and speed and test it till you know what you are doing.

When that isnt enough, buy better stuff. And then keep it.

We are running 7 year old forks, because they work ( Supermoto not MX) and have tried to make modern ones work as well and not succeeded .

And use stuff you can get support on locally.. nothing better than a day at the track with a guy who knows what to do just by watching you ... dont be sucked in by big names, who you never get to see.

I have had heard good stuff about Lainer , they were involved in supermoto over here, and have MX stuff too, now working on the west coast.

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8/16/2020 12:42 PM

Having the proper springs makes a huge difference

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8/16/2020 12:57 PM

Spring rate and correct sag should be first

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8/16/2020 2:52 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/16/2020 2:53 PM

Valving is about $400-600 depending on where you go. Everyone on here seems very happy with Factory Connection but I’d recommend going with someone local who can actually work with you over the phone or at the track. And obviously setting your sag and playing with your clickers is free. Correct springs and Some good valving is the best mod you can do to any bike. What bike are you on?

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8/16/2020 3:12 PM

Learn to feel and understand how what you now have works before you spend a dime.

Can you feel a difference when you adjust the clickers or change the sag?
Can you REALLY feel it?
Or you you think you feel it?

Until you know those answers, don't spend a dime

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8/16/2020 3:20 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/16/2020 3:20 PM

Don’t waste your money...if your weight falls within the stock spring rates the shocks and forks have plenty of adjustment..

A good set up stock suspension is enough for 99.9% of us..

Now, if you have money to waste by all means it’s your money and do what you want with it.

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8/16/2020 3:58 PM

My last bike I rode for 12 months before changing the springs and settings (forks revalved) for my weight and it was like night and day. Tracked so much better through single trails and soaked up the bumps and jumps really well.
On my newer bike I’ve just changed the springs and set the clicker settings from the manual. I’m happy with it so will ride as it is for now.

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8/16/2020 4:00 PM

Check sag, where your weight and/or speed falls for spring rates, check basic things like what is recommended fork height for conditions and a clicker range to work within. Then ride and try and understand what any of the above changes had or feel like. You can pay someone all the $ in the world to tune suspension, but if you cannot provide feedback and they cannot provide guidance where to go with it, it’s pissing money away.

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8/16/2020 4:16 PM

mxryan25 wrote:

Having the proper springs makes a huge difference

Hell yes. I’ll get that sorted before I even ride a bike.
Also get your static sag and rider sag dialed in. Grab a sag scale, great tool to have.
When you set your sag, do it in your riding position, that makes a huge difference. I stand probably 90% of the time. I set everything sitting once out of curiosity and it handled like shit.

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8/16/2020 4:22 PM

mxryan25 wrote:

Having the proper springs makes a huge difference

This first before anything.

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8/16/2020 8:44 PM

What bike and year?

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8/16/2020 11:16 PM

CarlinoJoeVideo wrote:

What bike and year?

2019 KX250F

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8/17/2020 12:24 AM

How heavy are you? And what kind of dirt does your local track have?

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"I dont want to milk anything out - i'll just keep pushing"


8/17/2020 4:57 AM

CarlinoJoeVideo wrote:

What bike and year?

AP_151 wrote:

2019 KX250F

The stuff is pretty good stock, what is your goal, what is your budget? If you are a weekend warrior that just rides for fun, having the correct spring rate and fresh fluids will probably be more than good enough for you. If you are a racer that is looking for every ounce of performance or you are looking for a more plush ride then revalving is the way to go.

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2020 YZ450F
2018 KTM 450SXF FE
2016 YZ250F 2008 CRF450R
2015 YZ250F 2008 CRF250R
2001 CR250R
2010 YZ250 2012 CRF150R
2009 YZ125 2010 KX109.5
SSR Motorsports Dealer
TAGMX Suspension & Graphics! www.tagmxsuspension.com https://www.liquidskinzdesign.com/



8/17/2020 5:43 AM

If you are mechanically inclined you can try a set of the race tech gold valves. But first and foremost you need to get the bike sprung right, make sure it’s balanced, and set your sag. From there you can knit pick it and tell whichever tuner you go with what characteristics you would like changed.

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8/17/2020 5:45 AM

Correct spring rate is key.

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8/17/2020 6:27 AM

A lot depends on the bike, hours, your weight and skill level. Just had factory connection revalve mine and it feel awesome. $750 all together but well worth it.

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8/17/2020 7:51 AM

Just go for it and start with a revalve $400 -$600. You don't know what you got until its gone and you don't know what your missing if you have never had it. The biggest thing from a good revalve is the ability to handle a big landing and the feel of the bike being more planted in most other situations. The closer you get to a pro setting the more your going to have a bike that will skip over breaking bumps as opposed to a bike that is absorbent and springy. So you will change the way you ride depending on what you have done.
On a side note since we are talking about suspension, it always amazed me with suspension how people will look for everything including bar clamps to get that perfect setup but pay no attention whats so ever to the front wheel and installing it properly to see that it doesn't bind the forks when they compress. It makes a difference if you take the time to line it up properly.

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8/17/2020 9:01 AM

Okay, soooo.... correct spring rate? HOW does one determine this? Guys say "Race Tech chart is too stiff"- who do we trust? RaceTech or "guys"?

RT chart says my '14 KX250 forks are 2 rates too stiff (155 lbs, B rider) but my 16 year old son (145 lbs, fast B rider) says it's a hair too soft. Who to believe?

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2015 Kawasaki KX 250F
2015 GasGas TXT Racing 125
2015 Husqvarna TC 125
2018 KTM 150 XC-W

8/17/2020 9:08 AM

AP_151 wrote:

I’ve always just run the stock stuff and never invested heavily into suspension outside of normal maintenance... but I’m wanting to now.

My question is, where do I start and how much do I need to spend to make a noticeable difference?

Read up on your bike & it's suspension.
Find out what "adjusting" people are doing -stock- and see what you learn by trying that yourself.
Look into the opinions that folks on the same bike in your regiaon have and where/who they go to for Suspension work...
See if they're happy.
See if or what differences it made.
Try their bike if you can and see if it's different.

Good Luck!

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I ripped a start from Egypt and I was happy about that.

8/17/2020 9:22 AM

HighPlainsSquid wrote:

Okay, soooo.... correct spring rate? HOW does one determine this? Guys say "Race Tech chart is too stiff"- who do we trust? RaceTech or "guys"?

RT chart says my '14 KX250 forks are 2 rates too stiff (155 lbs, B rider) but my 16 year old son (145 lbs, fast B rider) says it's a hair too soft. Who to believe?

Race tech calculator can be a useful tool but not an end all be all by any means. I’ve found the calculator to be mostly slightly soft. I’d recommend if you’re a capable C rider then enter B in the Calc, and so on with B rider etc... I would also tell the same to a suspension tuner. You’re better off to be a little on the stiff side than too soft with springs, you can find comfort by opening up the compression if need be

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8/17/2020 9:36 AM

EngIceDave wrote:

Learn to feel and understand how what you now have works before you spend a dime.

Can you feel a difference when you adjust the clickers or change the sag?
Can you REALLY feel it?
Or you you think you feel it?

Until you know those answers, don't spend a dime

This.

Go testing with a friend and have him turn the clickers for you. Tell him to throw you a curveball every now and then by not making any changes - see if he can trick you.

It is my belief that stock suspension is pretty darn good these days, for the most part. Get it dialed in first and then see if you really need anything else.

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Braaapin' aint easy.

8/17/2020 9:51 AM

Once you get your sag set, static sage is huge on the spring rate. Being a 200 + pounder has had me re-spring on every bike.

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8/17/2020 2:52 PM

Some notes from my experience.

- set your clickers to the factory manual or specs that MXA uses in their test.
- Set the SAG, both static and rider sag. That will tell you if you need a stronger or lighter rear spring. It’s very important to get the SAG numbers correct so that the bike is in balance.
- The race tech Spring chart is on the light side. You can mess around with it and put in different rider weights different rider abilities and the fork springs tend to stay the same. So I don’t think it can be trusted.
- If you have to go to heavier springs, increase your rebound a couple of clicks.
- you’re gonna have to verify set up and balance whether you send your suspension in or not. So you might as well do it first and see how much better the bike works before you send it in.
- On your forks, change the fork oil and set the oil level so that you have a known baseline of what you’re working with. It’s impossible to make sense of changes if you don’t know where you’re starting from.
- Take notes of your baseline and any changes you make. Trusting all this to memory just leads to confusion.
- The one time (20 years ago) I sent all my suspension in to get worked, I sent a full page of notes I’d taken about how the suspension worked in G outs and stutter bumps, bigger and little whoops, jumps, etc. The results were good.
- pick a time you’re not pressured to be in a hurry, go to the track, make some laps, make some changes and take more laps, and keep repeating. just to see what works or what you can learn.
- Good luck and have fun.

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