I just finished my suspension upgrades,
After reading countless posts about the crappiness of the stock suspension and getting more experience on the bike and dirt/gravel/rocky roads, I started thinking all the more knowledgeable riders were not happy with there stock suspension and had gone through some sort of upgrade, especially the forks. The eyeopener came when I went on a dualsport ride with the BMW Riders of Knoxville, and realized while they weren't going really fast I was struggling to keep up. Most of my riding I am alone and tend to poke along and sightsee alot.
after spending even more time reading threads and learning I knew nothing about suspensions, I bought Ned's suspension Ebook, and learned enough to have an idea what people were talking about.
I got prices from Ohlins and Traxxion Dynamics for the forks (racetech never replied back) and decided the $600 more for Ohlins couldn't be worth it.
I pullled my forks off and sent them to Traxxion Dynamics to have them install the kit (I really didn't have the time with working 50-60hrs/week). it was a 8 day turnaround, and I had them 10 days later.
After a quick test ride, I was like
what an unbelieveable difference, when I went from pavement to dirt I didn't realize and I was riding about 15mph faster. then I realized the shock sucks, and I was bouncing around.
I had decided going into this that I wasn't going 1/2 way, so I already had a Wilbers shock on order, they were a bit backed up and it took 4 weeks to get it, I picked it up on thursday and got it installed by Friday evening. (don't follow everything in the Haynes book, why would you take the muffler off?)
Saturday I got woke up and left to ride some of my favorite dualsport roads near Tellico Plains.
The fork upgrade deffinatly made MUCH more change, but the shock really settled things in. I hit everything from nice smooth pavement to wased out rutted dirt/gravel. It was the best Saturday I've had in quite a while.
If someone had told me how much difference this would make I would not have believed or understood. NOW I understand when told that a suspension is the most bang for the buck. It really feels like a completely different bike, on and offroad.
Costs are not cheap.
Traxxion Dynamics AK-20 $1200+$200 installation (I got the "hardcore" offroad setup)
Wilbers shock + remote preload = high/low speed compression adjusters $1200
BIgger GRIN priceless
EDIT: I finally got enough courage to start playing with adjustments, and then decided a bigger adjustment was needed to really see what was changing, I turned both fork adjustments out about 2 1/2 turns and the shock adjustments out about 1/2 turn, this is taking the jolt out of the potholes and square ledge type hits.