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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
To Racer172, Turbo329 and all,
As a matter of interest what spring rate was used for your new suspension? How did you determine the spring rate you needed when the new shock was setup? Do you know the OEM spring rates? I have been trying to find the OEM spring rate ( for front and rear) to no avail. I have written to Kawasaki dealers - they don't know. Written to Kawasaki Australia - they don't know! Even tried Kawasaki USA same answer! Race tech have an online calculator for spring rates- the H2 isn't even on there! I am astounded no spring rate info on this bike. Even Brocks performance don't know.:eek:
To all,
I know there a lots big guys on the forum how did you achieve correct suspension set up? Anyone want to chime in?
I am trying now writing directly to Kawasaki Heavy Industries Japan waiting for an answer. .....
Turbo 329,
How about you mate, I know your a big guy. With my 95 kgs (210lbs) I had to use max preload to get correct sag. How did you go? I am guessing you setup your sag....what sag have you achieved with your weight and application? Do you know any info regarding OEM spring rates?
Jeffro ;)

Lots and lotsa questions for ya! Ha ...
 

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I weigh about the same. I set the sag and forgot about it.

For a street-ridden bike, it's normally enough for spring rates to be somewhere in the ballpark; it isn't worth the effort to split hairs. If you're not using almost all of the suspension travel (do the zip-tie trick!) then you have enough spring rate.
 

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To Racer172, Turbo329 and all,
As a matter of interest what spring rate was used for your new suspension? How did you determine the spring rate you needed when the new shock was setup? Do you know the OEM spring rates? I have been trying to find the OEM spring rate ( for front and rear) to no avail. I have written to Kawasaki dealers - they don't know. Written to Kawasaki Australia - they don't know! Even tried Kawasaki USA same answer! Race tech have an online calculator for spring rates- the H2 isn't even on there! I am astounded no spring rate info on this bike. Even Brocks performance don't know.:eek:
To all,
I know there a lots big guys on the forum how did you achieve correct suspension set up? Anyone want to chime in?
I am trying now writing directly to Kawasaki Heavy Industries Japan waiting for an answer. .....
Turbo 329,
How about you mate, I know your a big guy. With my 95 kgs (210lbs) I had to use max preload to get correct sag. How did you go? I am guessing you setup your sag....what sag have you achieved with your weight and application? Do you know any info regarding OEM spring rates?
Jeffro ;)

Lots and lotsa questions for ya! Ha ...

Last season I weighed about 205-210lbs before throwing on my race gear. I set my sag for 30mm of travel and that seemed to be the happy medium for me for both street and track day duty.

Over the winter I put on a few pounds and I weigh 223lbs before my gear. I noticed a little more movement from the bike a couple of weeks ago while at the track. I'll be playing with it again soon so I'll keep you posted. On the other hand, even with the movement, the bike was super easy on the tire as you can see from my other posts.

I never had to touch the rebound or compression. I keep it right in the middle of the range which is very close to factory settings. I find that the stock suspension with the sag set at 30mm worked very nice with the Dunlop GPA Pros but SUPERB with the Bridgestone Slicks. Ideally I like to be at 25mm when I'm feeling fast and 30mm when I'm at the slow end of Advanced group and back road pace (which is where I'm riding at now since running SC gears LOL - The Power slowed me down a bit).

I'm not sure what the spring rate is but if I had to guess it's probably 9.8 kg/mm to 1.0 kg/mm in the rear given that it's a very heavy bike. Kawasaki has been known to go with this spring rate on past models.

Same with the forks. I have not touched them other than to set the sag which is the most critical. Most of the tracks I ride are smooth with only a couple of bumpy sections so my reb/comp are right in the middle of the range. Having a slightly softer spring rate in the forks is okay if you have a lot of suspension travel and are not bottoming out (use the zip tie method as GoFaster mentioned). It simply will give you more geometry to play with when braking and entering a corner. For me, the rear shock is critical for side to side transitions and the forks more so on corner entry.

At 210lbs you should be able to set your sag and forget about the suspension. I think the issues you're having are inside your mind. I know because I've been there.
 

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I also want to add that if you're not careful with the throttle, you can/will upset the suspension..... no matter how stiff you set it up.

With this bike, herky jerky is all too common and I've actually unsettled my suspension mid corner with the throttle. Smooth maintenance throttle and rolling on evenly out of corners stiffens up the chassis and adds to confidence.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Last season I weighed about 205-210lbs before throwing on my race gear. I set my sag for 30mm of travel and that seemed to be the happy medium for me for both street and track day duty.

Over the winter I put on a few pounds and I weigh 223lbs before my gear. I noticed a little more movement from the bike a couple of weeks ago while at the track. I'll be playing with it again soon so I'll keep you posted. On the other hand, even with the movement, the bike was super easy on the tire as you can see from my other posts.

I never had to touch the rebound or compression. I keep it right in the middle of the range which is very close to factory settings. I find that the stock suspension with the sag set at 30mm worked very nice with the Dunlop GPA Pros but SUPERB with the Bridgestone Slicks. Ideally I like to be at 25mm when I'm feeling fast and 30mm when I'm at the slow end of Advanced group and back road pace (which is where I'm riding at now since running SC gears LOL - The Power slowed me down a bit).

I'm not sure what the spring rate is but if I had to guess it's probably 9.8 kg/mm to 1.0 kg/mm in the rear given that it's a very heavy bike. Kawasaki has been known to go with this spring rate on past models.

Same with the forks. I have not touched them other than to set the sag which is the most critical. Most of the tracks I ride are smooth with only a couple of bumpy sections so my reb/comp are right in the middle of the range. Having a slightly softer spring rate in the forks is okay if you have a lot of suspension travel and are not bottoming out (use the zip tie method as GoFaster mentioned). It simply will give you more geometry to play with when braking and entering a corner. For me, the rear shock is critical for side to side transitions and the forks more so on corner entry.

At 210lbs you should be able to set your sag and forget about the suspension. I think the issues you're having are inside your mind. I know because I've been there.
Nate,
Firstly thanks for the reply all makes sense what you say. With this ....are not issues or stress for me, just interest and passion, I like doing things right. To me this is part enjoyment, asking questions, learning, it's all good :D
Thanks again
Jeffro ;)
 

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Set the preload to get rider-aboard sag to 30 mm or thereabouts then do the zip-tie trick (poor man's suspension datalogger).

Put a zip-tie around one fork leg as tight as you can get it and slide it up against the fork seal. Do the same with the piston rod for the rear shock. Then go for a ride but avoid hard landings from wheelies (as this will give you false information). Include cornering and braking on whatever roads or tracks you usually do. This will tell you the amount of suspension travel that you are actually using.

You want to stay out of the last 20 mm or so of available bump travel in the forks because that is where the compression damping becomes extremely stiff (to resist hard-bottoming).

If you are using up too much front fork travel or bottoming the rear shock THEN you can talk about installing stiffer springs. Otherwise leave well enough alone.

My bike is street ridden on frost-heaved and often badly-maintained back roads and as noted elsewhere, I've been battling excessive harshness. After talking to a local tuner, I backed out all the adjustments to the limit at both ends - rebound, compression, high-speed compression) and went for a ride ... the intent being to see what misbehaved, if anything, and needed to be added back in. The rear was wallowy like this ... I've been adding in just enough rear rebound to control it. It's better. My 2004 ZX10R with stock suspension that has been fiddled with (and with 91,000 km on the clock!) is still better-behaved though ...
 

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Last season I weighed about 205-210lbs before throwing on my race gear. I set my sag for 30mm of travel and that seemed to be the happy medium for me for both street and track day duty.

Over the winter I put on a few pounds and I weigh 223lbs before my gear. I noticed a little more movement from the bike a couple of weeks ago while at the track. I'll be playing with it again soon so I'll keep you posted. On the other hand, even with the movement, the bike was super easy on the tire as you can see from my other posts.

I never had to touch the rebound or compression. I keep it right in the middle of the range which is very close to factory settings. I find that the stock suspension with the sag set at 30mm worked very nice with the Dunlop GPA Pros but SUPERB with the Bridgestone Slicks. Ideally I like to be at 25mm when I'm feeling fast and 30mm when I'm at the slow end of Advanced group and back road pace (which is where I'm riding at now since running SC gears LOL - The Power slowed me down a bit).

I'm not sure what the spring rate is but if I had to guess it's probably 9.8 kg/mm to 1.0 kg/mm in the rear given that it's a very heavy bike. Kawasaki has been known to go with this spring rate on past models.

Same with the forks. I have not touched them other than to set the sag which is the most critical. Most of the tracks I ride are smooth with only a couple of bumpy sections so my reb/comp are right in the middle of the range. Having a slightly softer spring rate in the forks is okay if you have a lot of suspension travel and are not bottoming out (use the zip tie method as GoFaster mentioned). It simply will give you more geometry to play with when braking and entering a corner. For me, the rear shock is critical for side to side transitions and the forks more so on corner entry.

At 210lbs you should be able to set your sag and forget about the suspension. I think the issues you're having are inside your mind. I know because I've been there.[/QUOTE]

Hi turbo,

I tried to set 30mm front and rear on my 17 h2. I could only get 41mm front and 42mm rear with 14 clicks preload front and rear. I weigh 189lbs how many clicks of preload did you use to achevie 30mm?
I have the rebound and compression set to standard settings.
 

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This was a bump to an old thread. I've since taken the bike to an expert and had him re-work it.

My main complaint was excessive harshness. Our backroads have plenty of broken pavement and frost heaves.

Front ... his opinion was that the spring rates were close enough, but damping from the shim stack was off the scale (this cannot be corrected by fiddling with the clickers alone).

Rear ... there was evidence of the shock bottoming, which will cause harshness on big bumps. His opinion was that the spring rate was too soft but that the damping would be OK with a new stiffer spring. Stock spring measured to be 11 kg/mm. What's in there now is 16 kg/mm ...

It's better. It's still a firm bike, but the edge was taken off. The steering is better, and the ride is better.
 

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This was a bump to an old thread. I've since taken the bike to an expert and had him re-work it.

My main complaint was excessive harshness. Our backroads have plenty of broken pavement and frost heaves.

Front ... his opinion was that the spring rates were close enough, but damping from the shim stack was off the scale (this cannot be corrected by fiddling with the clickers alone).

Rear ... there was evidence of the shock bottoming, which will cause harshness on big bumps. His opinion was that the spring rate was too soft but that the damping would be OK with a new stiffer spring. Stock spring measured to be 11 kg/mm. What's in there now is 16 kg/mm ...

It's better. It's still a firm bike, but the edge was taken off. The steering is better, and the ride is better.
By chance, could you point me in the right way for acquiring stiffer springs? I've left emails with Racetech, Traxxion, Ohlins, and so far nothing.
 

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Find the local suspension tuner that the roadracing crowd uses.

I gave the bike to Accelerated Technologies - Performance Suspension Specialists (I've known John Sharrard for a couple decades) ... "Fix this." He did. There's a couple others I know who I'd trust doing this, but they're all local to me, not to you.

And I should really update the post above. More recently, I threw on a set of Dunlop Q3+ with the rear being 190/55-17, and I put in a couple hours of riding up north today. It's more than just "better". Now it's awesome, and it doesn't beat me up.

Bear in mind that taking the forks apart and re-shimming to reduce damping is a necessary part of this. The stock valving is way too stiff if you are riding on bumpy roads.
 
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