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Help needed re: suspension upgrade/advice

Discussion in 'V7/V85/V9 Chat & Tech' started by ds99, Dec 20, 2014.

  1. ds99

    ds99 Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    Hi all

    I have a 2011 V7 classic. I find the rear suspension much too "firm", Every single little bump seems to ricochet through my body. Sometimes I am even "launched" off my seat.

    Can anyone recommend which rear shock absorbers I can install to get a more comfortable ride? I am not too concerned about cornering ability as I am not a "knee down" fast type of rider.

    Here is a photo of the current rear shock. It is a "sachs", I assume that is the original that came with the bike?

    Also - looking at the photo is the pre-load adjusted in the right place? Would that make any difference to how firm the ride?

    I weigh 10.5 stone (147 lbs)

    I am in the UK

    thanks

    1.jpg
     
  2. pokeyjoe

    pokeyjoe High Miler

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    Pre-load will make all the difference in the world. If it's too "tight", you'll rattle your teeth out. You can get someone to help you set it properly. The bike should sag 30% of the total suspension travel when you sit on it with full gear. Look up the suspension travel. Measure the distance between the swingers (by the axle) and the bottom of the rear fender with the rear wheel off the ground. Put the bike back on the ground and measure that same distance again with you sitting on it. The difference between your two measurements should be 30% of the total travel. If not, adjust it and try again. Once you have your initial measurement made, you won't have to get the rear wheel off the ground anymore.

    That will help you with what you have. The stock shocks are crap, however. Todd can make some suggestions for you based on how much you want to spend.
     
  3. ds99

    ds99 Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    ok, i will need to figure out a way of getting the rear wheel off the ground. any suggestions? (i have no centre stand)
     
  4. GT-Rx®

    GT-Rx® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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  5. francod123

    francod123 Cruisin' Guzzisti

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    Yea but for now you can reduce the preload more and get in the general area so it isn't as stiff. The picture you put up shows you have a good amount left to reduce the preload. If you're 147 without gear then getting the preload dialed in should help, but like others said the stock shocks are shit.
     
  6. ds99

    ds99 Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    ok, forgive my ignorance,

    do i have to turn the big silver nuts so they are lower (ie more towards the ground)
     
  7. ds99

    ds99 Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    thanks todd, the shocks for sale on this site are too expensive for me, so.... can anyone recommend any Hagon shocks?

    eg any of these?

    [​IMG] 32012CC1 STAINLESS CUSTOM BODY DAMPERS WITH STANDARD CHROME SPRING AND POLISHED STAINLESS TOP SHROUD

    [​IMG] 32012CC2 STAINLESS CUSTOM BODY DAMPERS WITH POLISHED STAINLESS UPPER AND LOWER SHROUD


    [​IMG] 32012CL2 BLACK BODY ROAD DAMPERS WITH POLISHED STAINLESS UPPER AND LOWER SHROUD



    [​IMG] 32012CL3 BLACK BODY ROAD DAMPERS WITH STAINLESS BLACK UPPER SHROUD AND POLISHED STAINLESS LOWER SHROUD



    [​IMG] 32012CSA STAINLESS CUSTOM BODY DAMPERS WITH STANDARD CHROME SPRING


    [​IMG] 32012SA BLACK BODY ROAD DAMPERS WITH STANDARD CHROME SPRING


    [​IMG] 32012SA1 BLACK BODY ROAD DAMPERS WITH STANDARD CHROME SPRING AND POLISHED STAINLESS TOP SHROUD



    [​IMG] 32012TTSA 2810 ADJUSTABLE SHOCKS, BLACK DAMPER WITH STANDARD CHROME SPRING
     
  8. francod123

    francod123 Cruisin' Guzzisti

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    Yes. One is a lock ring I believe so you have to loosen that one first. Owners manual explains it I believe.
     
  9. ds99

    ds99 Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    so i am making the spring longer?
     
  10. GT-Rx®

    GT-Rx® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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    Hagon is a OEM replacement. I wouldn't consider it an upgrade IMO. Unfortunately you have to spend a little more money for something that is built to your specs, and not pulled off the shelf. You know the old analogy, buy the best once, or spend twice that trying all the others and ending up spending the money in the end any way.
     
  11. GuzziMoto

    GuzziMoto GT Reference GT Contributor

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    I would not just remove preload (or add preload) with actually measuring what you are doing. Too much preload can make for a stiff ride. Too little prelod can make for a harsh ride as the shock constantly bottoms out. That ride can be worse than one resulting from too much preload.
    Preload does not change the spring rate. Adding preload does not make the spring stiffer, reducing preload does not make the spring softer. Setting your preload correctly sets the ride height in the correct range so that you get the best ride you can and you are able to use the required amount of suspension travel to improve the ride.
    Check your sag (I prefer 25% sag as opposed to 30%, but whichever you prefer) and set your preload correctly and you will get the best results with what you have to work with. I recommend against just blindly turning your adjusters.
     
    McBean likes this.
  12. ds99

    ds99 Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    ok, thanks.

    however lifting the bike up (and stabilising it) alone is a real problem, and i don't want to spend over $200 on a stand. finances are limited.
     
  13. GuzziMoto

    GuzziMoto GT Reference GT Contributor

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    The only things you really need to set sag are a measuring device of some sort and one or two friends. Two friends makes it easy, one friend is doable but requires some creativity on your part. If you have a jack that can help, but it is not required. Same thing with a stand, it helps but is not required. To measure the suspension fully extended you can simply put down the side stand and lean the bike up onto it, lifting the rear tire off the ground. Then measure between your two points (one at the axle and the other some spot directly up from the axle on the rear fender/seat section of the motorcycle). That gives you the fully extended measurement. Next, measure between the same two spots with the weight of the motorcycle alone compressing the suspension. Bounce it a couple times and measure where it settles. The third measurement is to measure between those same two spots with you on the bike in a riding position. the differences between these measurements tells you what your sag is and whether or not you need to adjust your preload or if your springs are too soft or too stiff. All of this can be done by two people with no stands or other special tools required. It is much easier if you have three people to do this, but it can be done by just two people.
    I would suggest you google setting sag and read up on the theory.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2014
  14. Seasider

    Seasider Just got it firing!

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    Hello

    I fitted some Hagon shocks to my V7 Stone a few months ago, but not the ones in your pictures; I got the more expensive Nitros because they have adjustable damping, which the standard V7 shocks don't and nor do the cheaper Hagons. The can bee seen in my avatar pic.
    Hagon build the shocks to order, based on your weight etc (info is on their website). The Nitros are certainly an improvement, with less bouncing up and down. Of course, it's possible to buy the Bitubo shocks that are on the V7 Racer. They are more expensive than the Hagons.

    I'm no suspension expert, but it seems to me that whether you buy very expensive shocks or cheaper ones, there are a number of other factors that have a bearing in the overall ride quality, such as the forks, the fact that lighter bikes such as the V7 perhaps are bound to be less 'composed' over bumps than heavier ones or ones with a longer wheelbase. Even different tyres can make a noticeable difference in my experience with one of my previous cars and another bike. The only thing that seems clear and everyone agrees on is that the standard shocks on the V7 Classic /Stone are poor.
     
  15. GT-Rx®

    GT-Rx® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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    Mike, I didn't want to suggest the methods you did based on his post. But, yes, any means to unweight the rear wheel to measure sag is correct.
    The importance of getting a shock built to order with your (weight and riding style) specs is paramount, unless you aren't looking for an upgrade, just replacement of the OEM versions.
    Correct in that the bike must be "balanced" as to damping characteristics and spring rates, etc, otherwise you'll end up with a massively ill-handling machine.
    The V7 Racer BiTubos aren't upgrades per se, especially if they are not built/spec'ed to your weight.
    Happy to answer any questions for ordering direct e-mail; Todd at GuzziTech.com
     
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  16. ds99

    ds99 Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    thanks all, i've ordered a set of IKON's, hopefully they'll make the ride less 'harsh'
     
  17. elkgrichard

    elkgrichard High Miler

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    I thought the suspension too firm at first on my V7.

    Have found with miles and smiles the suspension soften up and works much better. I'm 175 lbs and have found the stock suspension a good fit for me.
     
  18. jkristjan

    jkristjan Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Can someone say if V7 and V9 rear shocks are interchangeable? Most aftermarket parts stores don't list V9 yet because it's too new, so knowing this would greatly help. According to motorcyclespecs.co.za, the wet weight of the bikes is virtually equal.
     
  19. GT-Rx®

    GT-Rx® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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    Matris has a listing already for the V9; https://www.guzzitech.com/store/category/suspension/?filtering=1&filter_model=v9 - take a bolt center to center measurement for me, and I can let you know if they are interchangeable. Matris is closed for another week, so I can't just ask.
     
  20. jkristjan

    jkristjan Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Well I'm in the EU so US-based shops don't make much sense to me. But I already noticed that Hagon has different part numbers for V7 and V9 versions, so that suggests there is some difference. Though the description and photo are exactly the same. The price range is also more suitable, so if you or anyone else would like to comment on these that'd be just great: hagon-shocks.co.uk/catalog/partdetail.aspx?partno=SNR107BLK%2fB

    PS. I know $2000 shocks are probably better than $600, but I'm just hoping to make it perhaps as good as some other stock bikes, e.g. Kawasaki w800. I dunno why MG shocks are so horrible, I don't want to race or go off road, but currently I can't ride anywhere except the absolutely first class brand new roads. Again, I only need to make it "regular", not even "good".
     
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