AER48 harsh off-road

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2/13/2021 11:39 PM

Just seen this video..... I have a fe501 2019 and fc350 2018, I have been riding the 501 most lately and after a big day on rocky ground on the 350 I am hating it’s fork. Any ideas on how to make it more plush? I tried it on the manual and on various other sites recommended soft settings and this video goes against them all. Any advice appreciated

https://fb.watch/3Ez4onyHxf/

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2/14/2021 5:39 AM

Got to figure out if it’s harsh cause it’s riding to low In the stroke(not enough air) or harsh cause it’s too stiff at the top of the stroke (to much air or too stiff with the clicker setting.). Best way to to just experiment next time you are out. Or do what many other have and do a spring conversion

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2/14/2021 11:19 AM

Back the compression clicker all the way out find out what air pressure wp recommended for the fx350 and start with that. Mx shim stack is probably going to be harsh for off-road.

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2/14/2021 1:42 PM
Edited Date/Time: 2/14/2021 5:06 PM

Not a fork answer (I am sure you'll solve that with all of the other feedback), but I ended up using the following products - and all successfully - to overcome harshness that can rear its head in many conditions. I figured if I focused solely on the rider comfort interface (rider's hands/arms) I'd get results quick. I also sought to "desensitize" my fork setups so I could ride anywhere without major adjustments. I got sick of chasing the perfect feel in my forks for all conditions - it was a time/frustration issue.

Here's what I use on my various bikes:
(1) FasstCo Flexxbars
(2) NEKEN SFS clamps (probably my fave)
(3) XC Gear's MAKO360 bar clamps
(4) All bikes get a steering damper (Scotts or GPR V1 set on low-resistance settings)
(5) Twisted Engineering 4X bars --- haven't tried, will assess this summer

While it is absolutely possible to get the perfect fork setup (which I did ... KYB A-kit (both PSF1s and spring) and stock SSSs are it for me), the above products give me the extra level/margin of safety/reduced shock to make me a better, more relaxed rider. And when I am more relaxed, I flow better and have waaaay more fun. Turns out, you're much faster consistently, too. Win-win-win.

Good luck - you'll find improvement for sure with fork settings alone!

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2/14/2021 2:19 PM

MX Tech had a leaf spring kit for the AER to soften up the initial hit for offroad riding. I think JBI makes the same part you may want to check it out.

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10' 200 XC-w
96' XR600r

2/14/2021 10:52 PM

I have owned a 16 350sxf and a 18 350sxf, the 16 bike had RG3 built suspension for my weight and felt so much better than stock and i settled for that. One day i tried my friend’s stock -20 yz250f and i was done with the ktm. I could have made a kyb conversion to the AER48 but i liked the whole feel of the Yamaha. My thoughts are that it’s hard to get the stiction free and plush feel on the air forks.

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2/15/2021 12:57 AM

fullysicmate wrote:

Just seen this video..... I have a fe501 2019 and fc350 2018, I have been riding the 501 most lately and after a big day on rocky ground on the 350 I am hating it’s fork. Any ideas on how to make it more plush? I tried it on the manual and on various other sites recommended soft settings and this video goes against them all. Any advice appreciated

https://fb.watch/3Ez4onyHxf/

After my first season on an AER 48 I've had nothing but trouble with them. I had air bleed out of the cartridge and into the outter chamber making the fork extremely harsh. Before I realized this problem I did exactly what you did and lowered the cartridge pressure down to minimum and it didn't help at all. After I figured out what was going on I replaced the seal head with an MX Tech seal head and still had the same issue. I finally broke down and purchased the MXT Lucky Cartridge kit. I'm done with pressurized air in my forks.

I recommend you CAREFULLY pop out the 10mm fork vent screw located next to the schrader valve and see if the outer chamber is pressurized. From what you described I'd bet your having the same problem I did. I was never able to properly fix the problem and hardly rode at all last year because of it.

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2/15/2021 4:55 AM

Send them to Dave at Enduro Engineering and have them open up the mid valve and soften the bottoming a little. it will be the best 199.00 you have ever spent. oh, and make sure your front wheel is aligned correctly also...

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2/16/2021 4:32 AM

One of the biggest mistakes people make is dropping the air pressure so that the fork runs too deep in the stroke.

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2/17/2021 11:09 AM
Edited Date/Time: 2/18/2021 8:41 AM

fullysicmate wrote:

Just seen this video..... I have a fe501 2019 and fc350 2018, I have been riding the 501 most lately and after a big day on rocky ground on the 350 I am hating it’s fork. Any ideas on how to make it more plush? I tried it on the manual and on various other sites recommended soft settings and this video goes against them all. Any advice appreciated

https://fb.watch/3Ez4onyHxf/

You're comparing a 350 to a 500, so naturally the fork will feel less compliant on the little bike.
Also, one of the biggest knocks on the AER fork is a lack of control, predictability and connection w the ground. The biggest factors for consistent AER fork performance are bleeding and setting your air pressure.

1. Double check your fork alignment. After 10 or more years riding KTM, I just learned the other day about the correct order for fork alignment.

2. Always set your fork at your preferred pressure.

3. After fork warm up, always bleed your fork. If you have significant elevation or temp changes, bleed again. The air sits over the oil and is uncontrol/undamped. It feels very springy and highly variable compared to oil-controlled damping.

These are three of the basics. Once you've checked those things are are still not happy, you can talk about mods.

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KTM250SX YZ125 YZ85 PW80 ZX6 FZX700

2/17/2021 11:14 AM

fullysicmate wrote:

Just seen this video..... I have a fe501 2019 and fc350 2018, I have been riding the 501 most lately and after a big day on rocky ground on the 350 I am hating it’s fork. Any ideas on how to make it more plush? I tried it on the manual and on various other sites recommended soft settings and this video goes against them all. Any advice appreciated

https://fb.watch/3Ez4onyHxf/

That's a great fb video!

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KTM250SX YZ125 YZ85 PW80 ZX6 FZX700

2/23/2021 2:03 PM
Edited Date/Time: 2/23/2021 2:05 PM

In my opinion the air forks aren’t well suited to Rocky, rooty stuff, but work pretty well on the track or in high speed desert with big whoops, sand, ect.

I had Factory Connection work mine over and it made a huge difference. But they still aren’t great in the rocks. They just don’t have the suppleness like a spring fork. The slap down feedback in the bars never went away. I tried them with Flexx bars and it’s better, but only slightly. There’s too much stiction. You have probably double the amount of seals in the air cartridge. You could lower the pressure, but as someone else mentioned, you trade the comfort for the fork diving and the whole bike pitching when you apply the brakes and get into the turn.

That being said, I went to Ohlins forks and never looked back. They’re amazing. There’s enough adjustment in the clickers to run them from rocks to the mx track and everything in between without needing a revalve.

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3/9/2021 6:01 AM

Fwiw I ride Colorado and Utah singletrack on a TX300 with AER forks. I find them really good for rocks. The two keys for me are riding style and setup. They suit a fast/aggressive riding style and work really well when charging, even on very technical rocky stuff. On setup the key for me is to make sure to have plenty of air pressure. I run 150psi (2019 model). Below 140 they blow through the travel and get harsh.

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