Is bike height really that significant? - Sportbikes.net
 

Home Message Board SBN Chat SBN Articles Bike Specs Register Classifieds Forum Rules Advertise Contact Us

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.
Go Back   Sportbikes.net > Topic Discussions > New Riders
Register Subscribe Casino Garage FAQ Members List Calendar Arcade Insurance Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Motorcycle Escrow


New Riders Welcome to those just starting out or interested in learning more about motorcycling. Please read the stickies, and feel free to ask questions.

Insurance


Site Sponsors
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 12-03-2012, 06:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
CoonDawg
Superbike Champion
 

Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: North Carolina
Age: 23
Posts: 379
Gameroom cash: $4997
Sportbike: '08 Suzuki SV650S
Thanks: 13
Thanked 109 Times in 43 Posts
CoonDawg is on a distinguished road
Default Is bike height really that significant?

After spending 2 years struggling to get my Shadow Spirit running, I finally bought an 08 SV650 about a week ago. My experience on the Shadow was pretty limited, a couple hundred miles at most (it started spitting problems out almost immediately after I got it...), so my experience level right now is past the "But how do I GO?" and somewhere in the "Oh s--- that was a stupid mistake" phase.

*offtopic*
This SV650 has been a host of idiosyncrasies (mostly due to the previous retard owner, like a fuel line coming loose, loose rear axle nut, loose hoses, loose chain, bolts missing out of everything, basically she didn't own a wrench and hand-tightened everything), including neglect (5 quarts of coffee black oil with brown frothy goodness came out of it the other day. You couldn't even see the oil line with it on the KICKSTAND.) However, the owner before her definitely knew his stuff: he replaced the springs/emulators, a Techlusion TFI, integrated taillights, gear indicator, full yoshi exhaust, etc.
*/offtopic*

Anyway, the last owner, being 5'2", had the bike lowered... a lot. I'm not sure how much longer the suspension links are, but the front forks are probably about 2" lowered, and if I measure from the rear axle nut to the tail flange, it's about 17". To compare, someone on another forum said that 20" was supposedly stock. The license plate holder has been replaced with a simple steel bracket that holds the license plate inches above the rear tire; when I bottom out the suspension, it's less than a finger's width from the tire. From what I can tell, this bike has been lowered a great deal more than it should've been, but when I look at it, it seems to still have a lot of clearance to the ground. However...

Today, while driving through Lake Lure NC, and taking it cautiously because I was new to the bike and the bike/road combo, I came on a turn a little sharper than I had realized it was. I know I wasn't going any more than 25-30mph because I was behind an E250, and I took the turn at roughly the same speed as him. Either way, I wasn't particularly worried about it, and leaned into it harder to compensate. Well, mid-turn my boot scraped the pavement and I about shat my pants, straightening the bike up instinctively. I managed to re-enter the turn without any due harm, but the mid-turn wobble I got in protest from all the erratic adjustment, and thought of sliding into the guard rail, was very disconcerting. I couldn't believe I had scraped my boot in such a mild turn.

Now, I know what you're all thinking. "Your feet aren't on the pegs right; you should be riding with the balls of your feet." Well, I was. True, my feet weren't perfectly flush with the side of the bike, but there wasn't half an inch between my foot and the bike. That shouldn't even matter at my lean angle.

You're also probably thinking I was leaning out of the turn. My form is far from perfect (or even "good"), but my whole body was certainly in that turn, with most of my weight on the inside peg. I certainly wasn't counterbalancing or anything like that.

I know that lowered bikes can't turn as sharply as standard ones, but I always figured the difference was meager and it only applied to people who were actually taking the bikes to their limit. I don't even use a quarter of the throttle on that bike, much less the angle. Hell, the bike came with a good inch of chicken strips on them, and I've certainly not wittled them down any. I ordered stock suspension links, and I'm hoping they'll be here tomorrow, but since then I've been taking turns at much shallower angles.

I love my bike already, but we're not fully acquainted yet, apparently...
CoonDawg is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 12-03-2012, 06:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
Tony216
500 G.P. Champion
 
Tony216's Avatar
 

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: I live in PA, and the voices live in my head.
Age: 41
Posts: 1,813
Gameroom cash: $12460
Sportbike: Buell XB, Triumph Speed 3 and SR50
Thanks: 210
Thanked 428 Times in 307 Posts
Tony216 is on a distinguished road
Default

In a nutshell, sort of. A lowered bike has ground clearance issues. That said, when I had my Harley, it was lower than your SV and I never dragged a boot or any major hard parts.

People say that you should enter a corner slow and accelerate through the turn. The reason for this is the chain tension will help raise the bike up and give you more ground clearance.

Just curious, do you have any rider training?
__________________
Kissing the mirror is CENSORED
Tony216 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2012, 06:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
Aerythus
Spiffy...
 
Aerythus's Avatar
 

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Southport, NC
Age: 36
Posts: 2,345
Gameroom cash: $15564
Sportbike: 2007 Kawasaki 650r Ninja, 1991 KX 125
Thanks: 577
Thanked 428 Times in 304 Posts
Aerythus is on a distinguished road
Default

Does ride height matter? In short, yes. The only time you should lower a bike is if you can't hold it up at a stop. When lowered properly (front and rear lowered so that rake angle does not change) the main negative is exactly what you encountered; the pegs and other hard parts get closer to the ground, and consequently will contact the asphalt at a much lower lean angle, and makes the breakover (speedbump) angle lower as well.

So, if you don't need it to be lower, I recommend restoring it to stock height.
__________________
My frame up 650R Ninja build.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nidyanazo View Post
...the largest and most knowledgable group of motorcycle assholes on the net!

<---official SBN welcome sign
Aerythus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2012, 07:03 PM   #4 (permalink)
CoonDawg
Superbike Champion
 

Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: North Carolina
Age: 23
Posts: 379
Gameroom cash: $4997
Sportbike: '08 Suzuki SV650S
Thanks: 13
Thanked 109 Times in 43 Posts
CoonDawg is on a distinguished road
Default

I knew it affected lean angle, I'm just very surprised by how much.

IRT Tony, I took the MSF, but no track day classes or anything like that.
CoonDawg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2012, 07:37 PM   #5 (permalink)
USAFgsxr750again
500 GP Racer
 

Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Box Elder, SD WOOOOOOT!!
Posts: 801
Gameroom cash: $6529
Sportbike: 2012 ZX14R
Thanks: 89
Thanked 116 Times in 90 Posts
USAFgsxr750again is on a distinguished road
Default

get it back to stock and see what happens. you'll be amazed at the difference. my wife is gonna have problems when her time comes cause she is only 4' 11" and wants a GSXR600. but i'm hoping i can convince her to get the new 300... they'll be used models in a couple years so it shouldn't be a problem to one to learn grinding parts.
__________________
If you're gonna go, go with a smile!!
2012 ZX-14R in Blaze Green.
USAFgsxr750again is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2012, 11:00 AM   #6 (permalink)
RocketPunch
World Superbike Racer
 
RocketPunch's Avatar
 

Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Capital Region, NY
Posts: 592
Gameroom cash: $7257
Sportbike: 06 CBR 600RR, 03 R6 street | 05 sv650 race
Thanks: 2
Thanked 24 Times in 20 Posts
RocketPunch is on a distinguished road
Default

Reverting the bike to stock link will solve the clearance and, most importantly, geometry issue; In addition to you just need a bit of time to get used to the sv.

Lowering a bike with links is probably the fastest way to kill the bike's handling. In terms of riding position, for normal street riding, as long as you are aware that you are not counter-leaning the bike and not flaring your feet out, you should be ok.

Enjoy the sv, but to be honest the OEM sv suspension needs major sorting right out of the box. For a lack of a better word, the OEM suspension sucks.
__________________
LRRS/CCS #604
RocketPunch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2012, 01:19 PM   #7 (permalink)
CoonDawg
Superbike Champion
 

Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: North Carolina
Age: 23
Posts: 379
Gameroom cash: $4997
Sportbike: '08 Suzuki SV650S
Thanks: 13
Thanked 109 Times in 43 Posts
CoonDawg is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by RocketPunch View Post
Enjoy the sv, but to be honest the OEM sv suspension needs major sorting right out of the box. For a lack of a better word, the OEM suspension sucks.
Fortunately the first owner modified it with spring and emulator work. It's quite stiff now, I don't have a lot of experience with sport bikes but I don't feel like the front is super soft or anything.
CoonDawg is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bring bike to stock height ds02250 Ninja 250R 1 04-23-2008 03:27 PM
post your height and bike jetblack3s General Sportbikes 162 05-09-2007 11:38 AM
What bike for height? mxracer434 General Sportbikes 10 01-12-2006 12:59 AM
Lowering ride height of your bike. Goose Women Riders 4 05-18-2002 06:04 PM
Height vs. Bike adamantium Women Riders 10 07-07-2001 08:42 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:30 AM.



Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.0.0
1997 - 2007 Sportbikes.net INC. All Rights Reserved.
Motorcycle News, Videos and Reviews
Honda Grom Forum Harley Davidson Honda 600RR Kawasaki Forum Yamaha R6
1199 Panigale Roadglide Forum Honda CBR1000 Vulcan Forum Yamaha R1
Ducati Monster Harley Forums Honda CBR250R ZX10R Forum Star Raider
Suzuki GSXR V-Rod Forums Honda Shadow Kawasaki Motorcycles Star Warrior
SV650 Forum BMW S1000RR Honda Fury Kawasaki Versys Drag Racing
Suzuki V-Strom BMW K1600 Triumph Forum Victory Forums Sportbikes
Volusia Forum BMW F800 Triumph 675 MV Agusta Forum Streetfighters