Suspension - what are you using / where to buy.

Discussion in 'Technical' started by DavidFL, Oct 16, 2014.

  1. #1 DavidFL, Oct 16, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2016
    In response to posts on a thread Tweaking My Versys

    Tweaking my Versys

    A new general thread for riders to comment & recommend the after market shocks they are using

    On my Africa Twin I ran YSS, Technoflex & Wilbers; now on the Versys I am running a Nitron, brought from Nitron (Malaysia) Asia in KL


    Testing the shock on the computer

    Every shock from Nitron in KL is built for you - they ask for your riding weight + preferred set up.
    With rebuild the shock is computer tested before & after the rebuild.
    The engineers are Nitron in KL are genuine craftsmen, making a shock just for you.

    Nitron is a UK company. All parts are made in Europe. For the Asian market there is an assembly plant in Malaysia supplying S E Asia (Malaysia- Singapore - Thailand Indonesia) plus one in Japan for the Japanese market.

    Nitron UK HQs: Nitron Racing Shocks, Home

    Nitron Asia
    Facebook: Nitron Asia
    Nexus Racing: Nexus Racing
    • Like Like x 1
  2. #2 DavidFL, Oct 16, 2014
    Last edited: May 30, 2016
    From: Tweaking my Versys

  3. I'm using the Hyper Pro Street box for the Versys...25k from Red Baron Bangkok...the kit includes the full rear shock and front springs and the nifty yellow/purple stickers

    I really likey...I can't comment on the difference from stock suspension as I bought the bike at Real Kawasaki in Bkk and rode it 700 meters to Red Baron and had it changed...but I love the ride and the adjustability is very useful and easy.

    Would recommend it highly...just remember if you buy it make sure the tech(sic) doesn't install the fork springs upside down...I had no issues with the guys at Red Baron, they performed the install and helped me set it up for my weight...took about 2 hours.
  4. The problem with Hyperpo is the one size fits all approach to the rear spring rate. It goes from 150 N/mm REALLY oversprung rate of 300 N/mm.

    The clever Engineers at Kawasaki, using geometry and how the shock is mounted to the swing arm, have designed in a rising spring rate of 9.5%. (I suspect that the popular lowering kits for the shock f*&k up this geometry.) Not only is geometry a factor, but it appears that the stock spring is not linear per the specifications, (16 kg/mm) and there is a progressive rate from 15.8 - 19.1 kg/mm over the 55mm range. All this tots up to a 21% rising rate at the wheel which makes me all the more comfortable with a constant rate spring given my riding conditions.

    One could make an arguement for a progressive spring and in fact mine is slightly progressive from 13.8 kg/mm to 16 kg/mm. This rate is what I determined is most suitable for my application, however the huge range of the Hyperpro is a failed attempt to accommodate both a 50 Kg Thai female riding naked to 2 x 90 kg twinkie eaters with all their baggage, and results in a huge compromise for most riders.

    The Vendors are charging big money for these rear springs and there is no reason that they should not give you a spring calibrated to your weight and riding style. Nitron, Maxxton, Ohlins, and I am sure others offer springs to suit the application.
    Flogging the same rate spring to one and all is a cheap cop out IMHO

    See my other posts on this subject - rant over
  5. Nitron sport and from and why from England?
    Because they did deduct VAT and in Vietnam I have to pay +40% taxes so it came 20% cheaper than from Malaysia... :/

  6. Tried hyperpro on my Ducati S4 in thailand and was not impressed at all ,,,,,change to Ohlins rear and Ktech/ohlins front now perfect but it was all expensive
    Just fitted a shock factory Mshock to my Monster 750 in Uk as old sach unit was dead after 27,000 miles the new M shock is fantastic half the price of an ohlins its probably just as good .

    have used progressive and wilbers on HDs both are OK,,,,
    i fitted a Bitubo race shock to a Kawasaki track bike for a pal and it was very good

    many people like Nitron but i have not used them .
  7. I use Eibach springs on my XR400R for the front fork rated at 47 kg and Eibach rear shock spring for my XR250L, the spring with a heavier rate made a huge difference on the KYB shock, at the moment I am thinking of getting a YSS shock for the 400 - custom build only 10500.--. Also interested in the Ohlins shock from the CRF250L they offer, but not sure if can be made to fit on the 400. Anyone tried YSS or Ohlins Thailand yet? Would be nice to get some input.
    All my staff I get from race tech or ebay from the U.S
  8. #8 DavidFL, Sep 29, 2015
    Last edited: May 30, 2016
    The new guys in Bangkok to go to are

    BDS Performance Co.,Ltd.
    77/6 Soi Suhkumvit 42 Rama IV Rd., Kluaynamthai
    Phrakanong, Bangkok, Thailand 10110

    Contact: Mr. Brad Judd
    Operations and Engineering Manager
    Tel: (66) 098.275.2750

    For GTR forum members you can pop by for a free Sag and Squat check.

    More info here:Recommended Bangkok Motorcycle Shops

    Attached Files:

  9. Well I are looking now to upgrade the spring on my D Tracker and I assume the US is the way to go. I will give the Thai brands a miss by a golden mile.. Race Tech or something along those lines suits me. Although I think they do not produce the spring to suit. I will leave the original shock and change only the spring
  10. #10 DavidFL, May 30, 2016
    Last edited: May 30, 2016

    Attached Files:

  11. Suspension – how much do you get out of your shock before a rebuild - the $64 question?

    I had the AT for 15 years & clocked up 340,000 kms; I reckon that roughly every 18 months I had to rebuild the rear shock on the AT - & I had YSS / Technoflex & Wilbers rear shocks. It was always a pain sending it overseas for a warranty rebuild. I tried YSS for awhile, but sold the bike not long after.

    On the Kawasaki Versys 650 I clocked up 100,00 kms; it had a Hyper Pro on it when I Bought the bike & it went to Italy under warranty for a rebuild – coming back several months later – not impressed. I then tried a Nitron & was very impressed; however it too needed rebuilding after 20,000 kms, which meant a journey to KL.

    The rear shock on the Vtsrom is shot after 30,00 kms. The front fork springs are weak as well.

    So what next?

    Ohlins is going to be the go – get a shock with your own spring weight, plus get it rebuilt in country at the Ohlins plant in Chonburi.

    But after all this & talking to the shock guys rebuilding my shocks I reckon that with the sort of “heavy” riding I do here you need to rebuild your rear shock every 15-20,000 kms.

    We have a brilliant road network in the region; but the road surface is nearly always uneven, bumpy. Even the concrete "super highways" have little bumps, ripples in them at the start end of each section. Your shocks have to work all the time. We generally don't ride on smooth billiard table surfaces like you usually get in the west. Then chuck in riding fast in the endless twisties in the mountains & your shock really does get a hard work out all the time. For me it doesn’t last that long..

    Does anyone else have any ideas /opinions?
  12. I don't do the Mileage or Carry the Weight You do but 20.000 kms out of a Shock seems Disgusting to Me! If that is all they do they must be Total Crap! Surely they are designed to last Longer than that? I can't remember when I put the Ohlins on My Triumph Tiger 1050 but I guess I have done 40.000 kms or more on it and it is still fine? Maybe some research on Google is Required as there maybe a recommended mileage for Suspension before Servicing?
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  13. I am sure when my friend ordered an Ohlins shock in the US for his street bike few years ago they supplied it fitted with a spring that matched his weight or his expected combined weight at no extra charge – can’t find any mention of this on Ohlins site now though. I was interested in this as it was not offered in the UK.
  14. Anyone know of any shops in Thailand that are competent with WP suspension? I'd like the rear suspension on my Triumph XCx a bit stiffer than I can get out of the adjustments but I'm not confident to mess with the springs on my own.
  15. WP_20160615_001_zpso6yxwpwq.

    Ohlins on my KLX bought direct from factory in Chon Buri.

    Attached Files:

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  16. You could check out these guys Hua Hin. Maybe ok.

    Attached Files:

  17. From what I have seen and heard directly from other bikers I would treat any (and I mean Thai or Farang) mechanics with extreme caution - note David says "maybe". Suspension is precision engineered esp stuff like WP and needs a high level of technical knowledge AND special tools - easy to stuff it up if either is lacking. Can't you via an Trumpet XC forum find a shop in US or Europe that has the knowledge to modify yours and ship stuff to them - yes big issue when shipped back regarding duty etc but less that have someone here use "mole grips" on the tubes etc? If you do have it done locally suggest you sit and watch them - a novice can tell when the wrong tool is being used with a bit of knowledge - have a look at your bikes overhaul manual...
  18. Thanks David.

    John, being a mechanic myself I agree about the quality of most local guys. I have found a couple of Thais that are good at certain things and not others. I pick and chose who does what. I'm OK to do the work myself but I don't have the experience on changing springs and what not. Not much information on the internet about the XCx suspension and the overhaul manual doesn't have much detail. Hmm, never too old to teach myself something new I think...
  19. If all you want is a stiffer spring can't you go back to WP and ask them (oddly their site is not functioning atm)- Ohlins for example do supply different springs so as to accommodate different rider / all up weights. WP is a good product which is prob why Rally Raid don't offer an upgrade - Thourtech do a shock but at a high price. As you say messing with the spring without knowledge could be a problem - appears lots of info on ADV just did a quick search for "XC suspension" in "British Beasts - Triumph Tigers".
  20. Attached Files:

  21. 15,000 kms up on the Ohlins suspension.
    The front fork oil is knackered & needed replacing. Cost at CMS = 2180 baht.
    The back is still "ok" but on the way out according to the CMS Ohlins tech guy, so that will only be 20,000 kms before a rebuild at a cost of 3,000 baht.
  22. Dear Fellow G.T. Riders,

    A quick tutorial and refresher about suspension, and what most have forgotten......
    The Most obvious is, the most misunderstood part....... THE SPRING. What is a spring? What is Spring Rate? What are the types of Springs?

    A. A Spring is an Energy Storage Device B. The Rate at which the spring will compress in 1mm expressed usually in KG/MM or N/MM
    C. Linear, Dual and Progressive. D. None of the Above.......just joking. 55555

    Before everyone goes running out for Joe Blows Springs, or Whosey Whatses Shocks...... Figure out: as the "Owner/Operator" of your machine, what your purpose and needs are for a more enjoyable, safe and performing motorcycle.

    Thats 1/2 the Mojo, the Juju. the "Art of motorcycle suspensions", if you will..... Once you have established which type of spring and spring rate (front and rear) you need for your motorcycle...... everything else will fall into place. I promise.

    You, yes you, are the designer of your suspensions...... Do you want the Bike to beat you up? Do you want to fight it in mountain turns and during off raod applications and adventures? No, of course you don't. Well, then again, some of you might like beating yourselves up and thats cool..... Not for me. 5555555

    Your suspension is the 2nd most important system after what? Anybody ???? Oh, yeah you remember: YOUR BRAKES! Which is part of the big picture of your wheels and Tires.........Saddly, its the most neglected system by riders until they have a problem or get in a bunch of trouble. Manufacturers do not sell different spring rates for most bikes, however, some do on the higher cost models.

    Then the opposite of the spectrum is also true......... Overengineering of ones machine and too much thinking about suspensions. This is when "Shot Gun" maintenance is utilized and riders just Shotgun parts (and money) at there machines. Usually it does not work out. As a member pointed out with the "Street Box" one size does not fit all....

    So my Hommies, for everyone trying to decide which company, brands, or models to go with, here is some friendly advise:
    1. Determine the Purpose of your Machine: Paved Track, Bangkok City Driving, Off Roading or touring, etc., etc...... No you cant have all of them in one bike or a smart suspension with Snow and Tsunami mode.
    2: Determine Your Spring Rates, and type of springs you want! This comes from your map, weight, pillion,cargo loads, and GVWR and MAX LOAD.
    3. Determine if you need compression and rebound dampening and external controllers...... or will a pressurized shock and cartridges up front satisfy your suspension design. Preload is required on every bike and having external as opposed to internal adjustment is usually a God Send.

    We'll talk more about suspensions, systems, Sag and Squat in upcoming posts.... Remember your Shocks (if serviceable) need to be serviced once a year, and fork oil, seals and buschings: If your beating the crap out of her, off roading. For my street and touring Hommies: Every two years. Yes, the Front and Rear and re-squat the Bike! Woot Woot!

    Yeah, its that easy.
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  23. #23 Hua Hin, Mar 10, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2017
    Ok. I couldn't find anyone to fully service my WP suspension on my Triumph Tiger 800 XCx after 40,000km. The rear shock had gone weak and was not very fun 2 up with the cases load. Britbike can service the forks (by service I mean change the oil and seals) but not the shock. Basically have to send the shock back to the mother ship and park the bike forever for it to return. Not possible for me in peak riding season...

    I contacted Brad at BDS Performance in BKK. After lengthy discussions via email, phone and in person we decided Wilbers was the best option for my situation. Wilbers shock with full adjustability and Wilbers springs in the WP forks keeping the WP cartridges as Brad recommended that they are top quality already. Brad custom ordered the springs and shock to suit my requirements and Wilbers custom built the shock as specified. Brad did his magic and the first time I sat on the bike I could feel the bike was totally different.

    I now have 2,400km on the bike with the new suspension and I'm tickled pink with it. I normally ride with a fairly heavy load solo and the bike feels incredible. I ride about 50% of the time 2 up with the wife and cases loaded and it's amazing now. I asked my wife if it felt any better and she said 10,000 times better. Happy wife makes my life easy. I think having a hydraulic preload option if you change loads often is the best thing since sliced bread.

    Great service from BDS Performance.
    IMG_3370 copy.JPG
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  24. Sounds like a success story . How much did it cost ? And the time frame from ordering to installation?
  25. I went top of the line with some extras so it was expensive. Also the fork seals on my bike are made by WP for Triumph only for the 2015/2016 bike and you have to buy the seals direct from Triumph. Britbike had the seals as a rebuild kit only (ie. expensive) so I agreed to pay the extra cost for a full rebuild on the forks. Wilbers lists prices in Euro's on there website if you want an idea of costs for your bike.

    Wilbers Suspension Manufaktur | Online Shop

    Time frame, there were a few delays with the process. I wanted a black spring for the shock and Wilbers didn't have one at the rate that Brad calculated. Lead time for delivery with black spring... 90 days! They offered to paint one but Brad did not recommend that so I got a standard blue spring. It took some time for Wilbers to assemble the shock once things were sorted. Then my schedule changed and I couldn't make it into Bangkok. Then DHL lost the package which added an extra week. T I T. So about 6 weeks start to finish but I wouldn't have been able to get the bike into Bangkok even if the parts had arrived sooner. Brad asked for 24 hours to do the work. I arranged to drop the bike at 7am on a Friday and pick it up 9am Saturday
    (party time in BKK). They had some problems with the installation which Brad informed me of as it happened. They worked late Friday night to get it done and were on time for my Saturday morning departure. I'm used to delays in Thailand so I feel it went fairly smoothly overall and felt the service from BDS was top class.

    Brad spent a lot of time explaining to me the differences between brands, sag, spring rates, uses of the bike and how that helps determine the over all setup and what not so I got a bit of a bonus education in the whole process. Now I know...
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