Author Topic: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier riders?  (Read 2337 times)

TXVision

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Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier riders?
« on: September 22, 2003, 08:53:55 AM »
Hi all,

Way back when, when I had my first Vision (and I weighed about 135-140 lbs), it fit me perfectly and was very comforable to ride for longer distances. Now, add 15+ years and almost 70 pounds (I was skin and bones in the college days, fairly normal sized now :)  ) and my current Vision isn't quite as comfy as I remember Visions being.

What settings do I need to tweak, or mods can I make to make my Vision a little more comforable to ride? I know next to nothing about the suspension settings on the bike, and I'm not sure what to begin looking at.

If it helps or matters, I'm 6' tall and right at 200 lbs.

Any thoughts? Thanks!


Blake

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2003, 10:09:44 AM »
Man I wish I was like you back in the college days.   Here i am in college now and im about where you're at presently..  hell.. even a little more..  5'10" 205lbs..


anyway.  for me on my 82.   i just have 15wt oil in the front forks set to specs, and the rear shock is set i think 3 clicks from the bottom.  however, I usually ride with it at the lowest setting, or maybe 1 above the lowest when cruising.  It's a little "wavey" but definately a soft ride.  I just have mine cranked up for when i hit those curves with some force.  That and im liking the stiffer ride..  makes me feel more responsive to the road.  lets me feel it a little more.   sure the kidneys take a slight beating, but nothing major.




Blake
"At first it's like a new pair of underware... Frustrating and constrictive.  But then, it kind of grows on you..."

TXVision

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2003, 10:44:07 AM »
Thanks Blake. It's the "kidneys taking a beating" that I'm trying to get away from... my kidneys are too old for all that.  :)

I recently rode a friends new V-Star 1100, and it felt so much smoother than the Vision does. I was really impressed. Of course they're 2 totally different types of bikes seperated by 20 years of technology and I know there's no way to make the Vision ride anywhere near that, but if I could somehow dial-in a tiny bit more "softness" to my Vision, I wouldn't be so tempted to just go and get a V-Star myself.

Hmmm... or maybe I just need a Vision AND a V-Star....  :)


Blake

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2003, 11:25:38 AM »
Did you say vision and a V-star??


Welcome to my world..

1998 Yamaha V-star 650 custom (black
1982 Yamaha vision


the combinaiton couldnt have been any better..   the v-star for the days you feel like cruising.. and the vision for the more sportier days.  V-star is definately a great bike.  Never rode the 1100's but just sitting on the on the show room floor.  they seem to be pretty much the exact same size (custom at least) but the 1100 has the slight weight addition and definately the power.




Blake
"At first it's like a new pair of underware... Frustrating and constrictive.  But then, it kind of grows on you..."

Ron_McCoy

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2003, 11:53:53 AM »
I've always felt my 82 was very harsh in the rear.If we larger guys (I'm 6'3" and 215 lbs.)feel this way,what does it feel like for our lighter friends.I think Yamaha set them up this way to control the shaft drive reaction.Also I thought the forks were way too soft and flexy so I replaced them with some from an 82 Katana.This also made it easier to convert to dual discs.I used Vision rotors and Ninja 750 calipers and master cylinder.Rides and stops better,but the rear is still harsh.

TXVision

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2003, 01:15:28 PM »
Ron - Yup, harshness at the rear is what I'm trying to minimize. The front seems OK but the rear is well, harsh (for lack of a better word). That's my main complaint. I was thinking along the lines of "it seemed more comfortable when I was lighter, so maybe a heavier me is compressing the shock a lot more and it needs to be compensated somehow". Then again, I could be totally wrong here.

Blake - I never understood the appeal of a cruiser-type bike until I rode the V-Star. Wow! What a great bike! I like the 650, but would really need the 1100 so the wife can ride along too (assuming I were actually going to buy one, which still might be a possibility).

So, any thoughts on smoothing out the harsh rear end? Hell, maybe it was like this way back when and I just don't recall it being that rough...


RobTx

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2003, 01:19:53 PM »
TxVision, I'm a bit heavier than you.  I use 20wt oil in the forks and one extra inch of spacers.  This works pretty good for me on the front.  Not too harsh at all.  I have the preload cranked up all the way in the back, and this is acceptable.  I'd really like a stronger spring and a little more damping.  Maybe I'll just try to lose some weight!  ;)  We still need to get together sometime and ride but I'm in school full time and working too right now, but I'd like to try to find the time.
Rob

TXVision

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2003, 01:32:15 PM »
Hey Rob! A ride is definitely in order. Unfortunately it sounds like you've got about the same amount of spare time as I do - none.  :(  Ahhhh, ya gotta love 65-70 hour work weeks (a sad fact of life when working at a startup).

Cranking up the preload in the back sounds like a good starting point, I think I'll give that a shot. I could possibly stand to lose a couple of pounds as well...  :)

Lucky

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2003, 05:51:07 PM »
if you can find an 83 shock in the bone yard, grab it, it has an additional dampening adjustment.  as Jason puts it, "the 82 shock is a pogo stick"

--Lucky
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kiawrench

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #9 on: September 22, 2003, 07:29:55 PM »

blake,, when you want to live the v-star knuckle drag cruiser look, let me know ,, have a freebie slam trick for you
el paso special,,,, make sthe v-star ride low enough for even me to touch ground with fingertips and still have some suspension,,, no parts required
as for the vision- i am only 5 ft nuthin   so i had custom seat made, dropped rate guide to first notch and am dropping the forks 1.5 inches in the risers,, to level it out ,, rides almost the same to me ,, but it depends on how long you ride a stock set up as to if is good or not ,
keep your bike running,your beer cold ,and your passport handy.all are like money in the bank .

Rick G

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2003, 08:01:57 PM »
I have you all beat,  Like Blake , when iI was in my early twentys ,I was 195.  But now after 40 years of eating I'm 265  and I don't find the v harsh at all. I have ATF in the front  and have added air to the forks also a fork brace.  I run the rear spring preload, in the middle notch. It sounds to me  like your shock may have packed it in and even a working 82 shock would be an improvment . Keep looking for a 83 shock or one of the replacements made by fox.
Rick G
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Blake

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2003, 09:14:19 PM »
Knuckle drag cruiser look?   do tell...



hows the ground clearance?  and still some suspension??  nice...




whats the catch though.. there's always a catch..




Blake
"At first it's like a new pair of underware... Frustrating and constrictive.  But then, it kind of grows on you..."

TXVision

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2003, 07:25:22 AM »
Thanks for the all the responses. I think I'll start out by fiddling with the preload settings on the shock, and possibly a trip to the junkyard in search of an '83 part if that doesn't work. I might do the ATF / fork brace thing on the front end later on; that sounds like it might help out some, although my main problem is with the back end.

kiawrench

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #13 on: September 28, 2003, 10:14:18 AM »
http://users.sptc.net/~wto/julio.html-- that is link for slamming your v-star ?- works on all but the '04 1100 series .
friend of mine from army days lives near these guys, said they slammed his v-star 650,, now rides great, looks better and at 280 lbs, he doesnt knock his headers,, so , i guess is good tech poop,, they been doing it since 2000,,, lot of other tricks on that site too, but only for v-stars   i did this for guy across street,, then took a seat,, rode around ,,, seems to ride better,,, but then i never had much saddle time on that thing ,, too loud  
« Last Edit: September 28, 2003, 10:17:54 AM by kiawrench »
keep your bike running,your beer cold ,and your passport handy.all are like money in the bank .

Riche

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Re: Suspension tweaks / settings for heavier rider
« Reply #14 on: September 29, 2003, 10:21:31 AM »
  Kiawrench
  In the late 70?s when dirt bikes were just going thru a suspension revolution the move was to more travel. It wasn?t uncommon to increase the travel on a bike by installing new fork springs with longer damping rods and rebuilding the rear shock (single shock models) with a longer shaft and new spring.  On the other side the flat track guys not using custom frames would lower these new long travel bikes. The rear shock would be disassembled and a spacer added to limit the shock rods travel. In effect shorting the shock/lowering the bike. A new spring or shortened spring was needed too. Front fork travel could be limited with shorter damping rods or spacers to limit their travel too. Again new or shortened springs are required. Maybe this could be the solution for you. When I was trying to get your link to work this is what I thought would be on it.
  I?ve never lowered a bike using the above method but know people who have. I have increased the travel as described above to my 77 Yamaha IT175 in 79. Works Performance Suspension were the people who provided the service back then.