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Old 06-11-2014, 05:30 PM   #1
Gravetter OP
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KDX200 Fork question

I've got a 2003 KDX200 that I bought at the beginning of the year for woods riding. I've been having an absolute blast, but have started working through it finding out what the previous owner(s) did to it. One thing I want to dial in is the suspension. The front forks have 42kg springs rated for a 200-250 lbs. I'm about 190 geared up. I don't want to buy new springs as I feel these are close. Will lowering the oil level 10-15mm help loosen it up a bit? What is the recommend height, stock? I plan on keeping a 5wt oil.
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Old 06-11-2014, 05:57 PM   #2
baloneyskin daddy
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Those springs are 15 yrs old and probably sagged out .You'll probably need spacers to set the correct ride height.
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Old 06-11-2014, 06:00 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baloneyskin daddy View Post
Those springs are 15 yrs old and probably sagged out .You'll probably need spacers to set the correct ride height.

I guess they *could* be 15 years old if someone bought the bike and immediately replaced with these aftermarket 42kg ones. The stock springs are 32kg (thirty-something, not 100% sure) so these are aftermarkets. That being said, you may be right in that they are old enough that they could be an issue.

I need to figure out what a fresh set of 42's measures out at.
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Old 06-12-2014, 02:55 AM   #4
YZEtc
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The oil level specs are probably floating around on the Internet, or within the doors of your local Kawasaki dealer's Service Dept.

Yes, lowering the oil level will effectively reduce overall spring rate because you are increasing the volume of trapped air inside the fork (which is relatively easily compressed) while reducing the volume of oil (which is not able to be compressed).
The trapped air is known as the "air spring", and as the fork compresses the resistance of this trapped air goes up progressively quite quickly.

I'd experiment in 5mm increments as you may be surprised at the difference in the feel of the front-to-rear balance of the bike with just that change.

On my 2002 Yamaha WR-250F, for example, I wanted to reduce the harsh compression spikes when hitting sharp-edged bumps on the rocky trails around here, and reducing the fork oil level 10mm worked wonders.
So much so, that I went down one rate on the rear shock spring to bring the balance of the bike back to where I wanted it.
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