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  1. #1

    Member #
    326
    Bike(s)
    05 Bird, 96 BMW F650 Funduro, 86 Yam RD350
    Join Date
    Nov 16 2006
    Location
    Bombay, India
    Posts
    453
    Liked
    23 times

    Suspension for rough road surfaces

    Need some advice on suspension upgrades...

    Down here in India, road surfaces are nowhere close to as smooth as those in the US or Down Under. Especially within city limits, they're uneven and rough with potholes popping up fairly frequently. Was wondering what would be the right changes to make to the Bird's suspension to make the ride more comfortable on these roads. Regular riding isn't at very high speeds - rarely over 120-140 kmph - and knee-scraping is a complete no-no. I usually ride solo most of the time.

    Long distance trips (roughly around 2,000 miles / 3,200 kms each) would be once or max twice in a year, with a 2 or 3 box givi setup at the back; either solo or two-up.

    The front suspension usually takes the most beating. Though i figure if i'm making the change, it may make sense to upgrade both; the front springs for sure and perhaps the rear spring while continuing to use the stock shock absorber.

    Any help would be much appreciated.

    Ravi

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  3. #2

    Member #
    326
    Bike(s)
    05 Bird, 96 BMW F650 Funduro, 86 Yam RD350
    Join Date
    Nov 16 2006
    Location
    Bombay, India
    Posts
    453
    Liked
    23 times

    Re: Suspension for rough road surfaces

    Forgot to add... have clocked around 13,000 kms so far. Ravi

  4. #3

    Member #
    439
    Bike(s)
    '02 metalic cherry red CBR 1100 XX
    Join Date
    Nov 25 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    12,799
    Liked
    824 times

    Re: Suspension for rough road surfaces

    Ravi, visit, The worlds leading Honda Blackbird site and www.race-tec.ca Welcome to penske.ca and www.ohlins.ca Is there such a thing as a suspension tuning expert in your area? From Jaws, on the Bit site, I bought longer spring, shorter spacers, pre-load adjusters and I installed Gold Valving in the front from RaceTec. On the rear, Penske remote, ride height adj. Build for my weight. The rear can be rebuild but I'm not sure if in your "neck of the planet". OR you can ditch the Bird and buy a Beemer dual purpose. Just joking.

    This site is a wealth of excellent advice not to mention a fair bit of BS. Good luck. Are they building "inter-states" on a regular basis in India. Maybe you need a little BSA for tripping around the city. I teach in the heart of the Indo-Canadian community, but that's another story. Are imported motorcycle parts outragiously expensive? MMMM a Bird in India, somehow that amazes me. Cheers, Can. Bird.

  5. #4

    Member #
    326
    Bike(s)
    05 Bird, 96 BMW F650 Funduro, 86 Yam RD350
    Join Date
    Nov 16 2006
    Location
    Bombay, India
    Posts
    453
    Liked
    23 times

    Re: Suspension for rough road surfaces

    Nope… no suspension tuning expert that I know of… for bikes at least… and yes, no rebuilds possible in this part of the world…

    This may sound a little stupid… but to be completely honest, I have visited most of the above sites and also read up quite a bit on a lot of stuff that’s been discussed here. I know a lot of you guys in the US / Canada / Oz have upgraded to ohlins / penske / hyperpro / racetec etc… but just given the different, superior quality of roads that you all have in these geographies, I’m unable to figure out what kind of setup would be right for me. Hence the request for help.

    The number of really good inter-states has gone up in the last few years… but yeah, you do need to plan these as multi-day trips to enjoy the ride. It’s not so much that imported parts are outrageously expensive, they’re just not available! So I’ll either need to have them shipped to India or shipped to friends in the US / UK who’ll bring them down the next time they’re here.

    There’s more than one Bird in India… though R1s, 1000RRs and Busas outnumber them many times over. The Bird however, as is probably the case in most places, is popular with biking purists rather than the younger lot for whom biking nirvana is less important than ostentatious considerations.

    Ravi
    p.s. I did have a BMW F650 before the Bird… planning to keep the Bird for a long time… like forever!

  6. #5

    Member #
    326
    Bike(s)
    05 Bird, 96 BMW F650 Funduro, 86 Yam RD350
    Join Date
    Nov 16 2006
    Location
    Bombay, India
    Posts
    453
    Liked
    23 times

    Re: Suspension for rough road surfaces

    Some more suggestions would've been useful I guess... but didn't seem to get any.

    CanBird, thanks for your help. Spoke to John Jaws; have met him in the UK and picked up some stuff from him earlier. He was very helpful as always... last evening, ordered the over-length springs and spacers that he supplies... will probably stick with the stock rear for the moment. Appreciate your advice.

    Cheers, Ravi.

  7. #6
    X1rider
    Guest

    Re: Suspension for rough road surfaces

    Any rear shock will be an improvement over the stock unit. Multi adjustable damping would be a bonus for rough roads. I got my Penske from H.A.R.D. racing in the US. www.hardracing.com

    Unit was received 3 weeks from the time the order was placed.

  8. #7

    Member #
    326
    Bike(s)
    05 Bird, 96 BMW F650 Funduro, 86 Yam RD350
    Join Date
    Nov 16 2006
    Location
    Bombay, India
    Posts
    453
    Liked
    23 times

    Re: Suspension for rough road surfaces

    Upgraded to the new springs and spacers from Jaws... what a difference! CanBird, thanks for the advice... can't wait to do the rear shock upgrade as well... soon as adequate moolah is saved up!


 

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