9 years and finally happy with stock forks - SV1000 Portal
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 8th August 2019, 03:47 PM Thread Starter
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9 years and finally happy with stock forks

I added a superbike bar kit in maybe 2012. That changes riding position and made it a bit more difficult to arrive at final settings. Here are some of the pitfalls I encountered and ultimately resolved over the years:

1. FORK OIL - you'll never have good damping qualities with worn out oil. Enough said.

2. SAG - I mistakenly thought my sag was 35mm. A recent check found it at 42. It takes greatly different settings to control damping at different sag levels. Forget about adjusting your forks until your oil is fresh and your sag is "correct". I like near racetrack levels of control and am happy with my TT600 (25mm sag) and Ducati 900 Sport (28mm). For the Suzuki, 35mm is comfy but cannot be fully damped without becoming harsh. 30mm sag is good for my riding style. The fork is not harsh, steering is precise and mid corner bumps do not upset the chassis.

3. TEST - For the street it's not ideal until a) it's not harsh b) you can rail around a bumpy corner with full control c) fork dive on braking is moderate. Bring your 14mm socket and flathead on the road with you. On a test ride, I hit every difficult corner and bump within 30 miles and make mental notes. I'm not happy until conditions a, b and c are met under all conditions.

4. COMPRESSION - It's easy to go stiff on settings and greatly limit fork travel. You'll have great handling on perfectly smooth roads only. Start at stock settings and dial-in compression so you use maybe half your suspension travel when braking moderately hard.

5. REBOUND - That extra uncontrolled bobbing and weaving is inadequate rebound. Harsh ride is often too much rebound. You want the softest rebound setting that controls extra vertical motion in the front end, leaned over in a bumpy 50 - 70 MPH sweeper, at least on the street. If you get uncontrolled motions at 100+ mph speeds you'll have to either add more sag and redo the damping or maybe add damping a half turn at a time. Quarter and half turns have a noticeable affect once you're close.

Good luck everyone!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 9th August 2019, 03:56 AM
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Did you stick with 2.5w fluid or 5w...

I used 5w in mine and took the air gap up by 10mm.... then went Racetech springs and the air gap reduced even more, those springs displace less oil....

I might no' be a smart man Jenny....but i can pain' ma copper colored bike a dif'ren color.....
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 9th August 2019, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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My notes indicate Maxima 5W oil at the stock level. Curious, what is your weight, the particular Racetech spring you chose and the result for you?

As it stands right now, the stock spring is good for me at 175 pounds and with reduced weight on the front because of the superbike bar kit.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 9th August 2019, 05:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomf View Post
My notes indicate Maxima 5W oil at the stock level. Curious, what is your weight, the particular Racetech spring you chose and the result for you?

As it stands right now, the stock spring is good for me at 175 pounds and with reduced weight on the front because of the superbike bar kit.
In theory the stock springs are not terrible at that weight, in practice the appropriate straight rate is still much better.

I think you would be looking at .9 or .95, but it has been a few years since i got mine.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 10th August 2019, 11:08 PM
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I have never found anything that the stock fork springs were good for. I briefly contemplated making pogo sticks for lightweight children out of them, but gave that idea up when I considered the probability of a liability lawsuit.
Anyway, they are total garbage that should never stay beyond the soonest date that you can obtain just about anyone's straight rate springs of appropriate rate for the rider's weight.

Factory fork oil is poor as piss, and should be dumped in the recycling bin along with the springs (ASAP).

Fork valving from the factory isn't great either, and can generally be improved by someone who actually knows what they're doing. Race-Tech gold valves or similar are vastly superior, especially when applied in conjunction with a proper valve stack.....and even more so when proper aftermarket replacement rebound valves are also employed.

All of the above make a HUGE difference when dialing in correct damping settings. The range of adjustment in the metering becomes much more useful and precise.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 11th August 2019, 11:19 PM
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I used .95 Racetechs....
THe original fork oil height was 162mm on the 03 model S.... Racetech suggested 130mm, as their springs are not as tightly wound, and are minutley thinner wire, so they displace less oil.... i ended up at 127mm with 5W Motul Factory Line.....
I never did anythign about valving...

I run a 06 Gixxer front end now

Oh, and i am a fat-ish f*&^er...... 115kg (250lb)

I might no' be a smart man Jenny....but i can pain' ma copper colored bike a dif'ren color.....
.
.
2003 Copper SV1000S
Repainted Ford PE (Petroleum Mica)
Yoshi 2:1 collectors and Arrow titanium can...
One owner..... 290,000kms and counting...
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