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Old 04-03-2006, 09:49 AM   #1
cptarmy OP
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Rear Shock Setting KLR 650

Can anyone point me in the right direction for a discussion on the rear shock and what are the possible setting combinations...???

Here's my situation - 5'10", 180 lbs...sit on the bike with both balls of my feet on the ground (not tippytoe, but not quit flatfooted)

Bike is currently set at Damper 1, Preload 1 (the way it came from the factory)- Have been riding it on mostlly paved roads...

I plan on taking the bike on a 6 hour offroad adventure at a motopark with some friends...

The park has several jumps and/tabletops and I don't want to kill myself or bottom it too badly...

Anybody have any recommended setting for the best compromise for my offroad while still being comfortable...I'm not in a position to change the rear shock out right now, so I've got to work with the stock shock...

Thoughts???

Thanks in Advance,
Frank
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Old 04-03-2006, 09:52 AM   #2
Fat Toney
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good question, I've been wondering myself, had my bike for almost 2 years and 6k and didn't think to ask about dampening and preload setting...hope somebody that knows answers with out requesting the search feature first.
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Old 04-03-2006, 10:01 AM   #3
JKarp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cptarmy
Can anyone point me in the right direction for a discussion on the rear shock and what are the possible setting combinations...???
Get the rear suspention unloaded (wheel off the ground) and measure from the end of the swingarm to the tail light. Now hop on w/ all your normal gear and have a friend do the same measurement. Adjust the preload until you've got about a 3" difference. Rebound is a bit more subjective depending on your ride tastes. I'm 210lb and run 3 or 4 on the rebound.
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Old 04-03-2006, 10:02 AM   #4
Drif10
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KLR's have a rear shock???

Learn something new everyday.

I swear mine didn't.
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Old 04-03-2006, 10:11 AM   #5
GB
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I"ve not touched mine since new and it seems ok.. not even sure how to adjust it.. any special tools? I covered mine with a shock sock and haven't seen it since day 1.
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Old 04-03-2006, 10:11 AM   #6
Sandflea
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Jumping a KLR

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptarmy
Can anyone point me in the right direction for a discussion on the rear shock and what are the possible setting combinations...???

The park has several jumps and/tabletops and I don't want to kill myself or bottom it too badly...
I weigh 200lbs, used to crank the pre-load to 3-5 and rebound adj. to 2 or 3 depending on the terrain......when I had a stock shock. I jumped my KLR's and bottomed all the time. Remember, it's a KLR not KX.....table top Just remember, it's 340+ lbs, it's not hard to bottom it out or break the subframe!
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Old 04-03-2006, 10:18 AM   #7
DockingPilot
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Table Tops ?
It won't make a bit of difference on a KLR
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Old 04-03-2006, 11:01 AM   #8
Tourmeister
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Use the preload bolt to adjust your static sag. This is the bolt head on the shock that adjusts the preload collar. At your weight, I would start at setting 3. For the damping (on the bottom of the shock on the exhaust side), there is a black plastic cover that slips off. The knob underneath is only supposed to be turned one way. I think the range is 1-4. I would set it on 2.

For the rear preload, if you have a centerstand, get the rear off the ground. If not, lean the bike over on the side stand (carefully!!) until the rear is off the ground. Have another person measure from a point on the swing arm (I like the axle nut) up to a point on the fender. Say you get 13", remember that. Now sit on the bike, side stand up, and only have your feet down just enough to keep you balanced. Have your friend measure between the same two points again. Ideally, you should get a dfference of about 3-3.5", say 9.5 -10" measured. This means that when you sit on the bike, you are using about 30% of the available suspension travel (9") If you have more than that, crank up the preload to 4 or 5 until you are as close as you can get.

For the rear damping, you just have to ride it and play with the settings to get it where you like the feel. If it is too soft, your backend will be pogoing down the road like those old worn out Caddies. To stiff and your backend will feel like a jackhammer is being used on your fanny. It can cause the rear tire to hop and make you bounce up out of the seat. The ideal setting is somewhere in between where the tire stays in contact with the ground, you don't pogo, and the ride is not bouncy or harsh.

For the front preload, I would check the static sag as is before tearing into the fork. Again, get the front off the ground either with the use of a centerstand or by leaning the bike over on the side stand. The thing you want is for the forks to be totally extended. I pull the bottom of one of the fork protectors (the rubber booty things) loose and push it up, using a short bungee chord to keep it up. Next put a zip tie around the fork tube and slide it down against the dust seal. Now measure from the top of the zip tie up to the bottom of the lower triple clamp. I think mine was around 13". Now CAREFULLY put both wheels back on the ground such that you don't bounce the front end. You don't want to push the zip tie up to far. Once both wheels are on the ground, sit on the bike and again put your feet on the ground just enough to keep you balanced. Gently get off the bike and put it on the sidestand. Now measure from the new position of the zip tie up to the bottom of the triple clamp. Just like the rear, the difference should be 3-3.5", or around 30% of the available 9" of travel.

To adjust the front preload, all you have to do is pull off the fork caps (carefully!!). Start by loosening the top triple clamp fork tube pinch bolts, leave the lower clamp bolts tight. This step is VERY important as it relieves the stress on the top of the tube where the caps screw in. Failure to do it makes getting the caps on/off extremely difficult. Under the cap, you will find metal spacer tubes, or maybe PVC if someone has been here before you. The only way to adjust the preload is to install longer spacers or to cut the existing ones down. 3/4" sch 40 PVC works pretty good for a spacer and is easy to cut. Longer spacers will reduce sag (increase preload) and shorter spacers will increase sag (reduce preload). I would not make changes in spacer length more than a 1/4" at a time max. Reinstall both spacers and the caps, then do the zip tie procedure again until you get it where you want it.

For the front damping, unless you change out oil, there is not much to do to adjust it. I am 5'10" and about 185 lbs and like the 10wt oil. I also have the Progressive springs installed. I installed the 420 Progressive spring on the rear shock. I like it, but when I ride with nothing but me on the bike, it feels like it needs one notch less of preload but I am already on the lowest setting. With luggage on the back, it is fine. I have my rear damping set on 2.

The biggest thing is to remember the KLR really isn't a "dirt" bike. So if you go to jumping it to hard or high...
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Old 04-03-2006, 11:33 AM   #9
Hannda
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tourmeister
The biggest thing is to remember the KLR really isn't a "dirt" bike. So if you go to jumping it to hard or high...
Great advice.
I read somewhere here at ADV that the KLR flies like a bird . . . . and lands like a piano.
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Old 04-03-2006, 02:26 PM   #10
Jack90210
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Street/Mild Dirt: Preload 3, Damper 2 or 3

Serious Dirt: Preload max, Damper 4

6'0", 165 lbs (plus 20 lb gear)

The rebound adjuster really does effect rebound significantly, and it feels like it also affects compression somewhat too.
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Old 04-03-2006, 03:15 PM   #11
ldeikis
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5 preload and 4 damping was still too little for me. Race sag was something like 4.5 inches in the back, and even cranked up the damping wasn't enough to keep it from kicking you like a mule after any big impact. The couple times I had it in the air, after landing (and bottoming) it would leap up so hard it would throw you off the pegs. I put a set of raising (yes) links on a couple weeks ago, RL1s from Eagle Manufacturing, and it's a huge difference. Now I've got about 3" sag and the damping feels appropriate... doesn't pack up, but doesn't kick me if I don't get wise-ass over whoops. RL1s and progressive fronts made a big difference.

I'm 185 plus a tailbag with tools and tubes, FYI. Rob rides like he can't remember which bike he's on, I ride like a normal person .

Ps If you're hitting tabletops, you may have bought the wrong dualsport.

Check out:

http://www.off-road.com/dirtbike/tootechp1.html
http://www.motorcyclistonline.com/ho...sag/index.html

-Luke
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Old 04-03-2006, 08:36 PM   #12
kdxkawboy
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If you plan to ride agressively in the dirt, like most at your size you find you need the the max preload and max dampening. It's okay and then one day you discover that it doesn't seem to make any difference which dampening setting you use, they all feel the same, but oddly enough the shock finally starts to feel like it is working. Then one day, while changing the tire you discover the shock is blown. You cringe when the dealer tells you the OEM replacement is like $750 clams and kiss him when he says a Works Performance or White Power shock would be cheaper. So you get the White Power from the White Bros. and wonder why you didn't replace the OEM door-stop on day 1.

If you don't plan to get off the maintained dirt roads, never mind.
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Old 04-04-2006, 05:33 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadget Boy
I"ve not touched mine since new and it seems ok.. not even sure how to adjust it.. any special tools? I covered mine with a shock sock and haven't seen it since day 1.
easy to do..play with it....left side top of shock 12mm bolt...turn it to adjustthe preload...from 1 to 5 on the yellow indicator....when at 5..keep turnign and clunk it pops back to 1 to start again

dampning on bottow of rt side of shock...black plastic cover over it (almond shaped kinda)...pop that off...turn the dial (black wheel in horizontal configuration)...cover back on

pre 3 and dampner 2 here...230 lbs 6'1"...

I sag it more for when my gal rides the KLR

pics here from Glen

http://klr650.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=10299
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Old 04-04-2006, 10:08 AM   #14
Sandflea
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Wait a minute

Quote:
Originally Posted by ldeikis
Rob rides like he can't remember which bike he's on, I ride like a normal person .
-Luke
Hey...I resemble that remark KLR is back together after the land-scraping job I did on those trees, nothing that a torch and a prybar couldn't fix....and 300 bucks.
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Old 04-04-2006, 01:20 PM   #15
30Bones
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I have yet to touch mine and probably won't for another 6-8K miles or when it gets worn out.

2 up you notice that some adjustment would be a good thing.
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