How do I adjust spring preload of the rear shock? -

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Old 04-02-2007, 06:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
Mista Toad
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Default How do I adjust spring preload of the rear shock?

I bought my zx-6r from a 200 lb man. I'm about 155 lbs, and even with a full tank bag, the suspension feels really stiff. I'm sort of a DIYer and the owners manual tells you how to adust the front shocks for spring preload/rebound damping/compression damping...but for the rear, they leave off the spring preload and say to get it adjusted by an authorized Kawa dealer...

Is it b/c the collar to the spring is a weird shape that requires a special wrench to adjust? Is this really something that (for some reason I can't see or comprehend) is somehow dangerous or tricky to do yourself? If it's a weird tool, what tool is it? I rather pay for the tool than pay for some tool to work on my bike instead, you know?
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Old 04-20-2007, 03:43 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If it feels stiff it's not the spring, it's damping. Preload (the spring) sets the ride height w/in the suspension range, it doesn't make the suspension soft or stiff.

With that said, you probably WILL need to remove some preload to get your sag in the right spot.

Quick crash course in motorcycle suspension:
Spring sets bike height but not suspension height. You adjust preload (the spring) so the bike settles the correct amount with you on it so it's roughly in the middle of the suspension range (so it doesn't top out or bottom out).

Damping controls the movment of the spring. Stiff compression & rebound damping is what makes the ride "hard". It restricts the movment of the spring. Soft compression & rebound damping is what makes the bike ride plush, but can make the bike wallow around when riding hard. Adjusting the damping is much more of a rider feel kinda thing than a mathematically calculated adjustment.

Tools needed to adjust preload - wrench for the front, spanner wrench (or a hammer & a skrewdriver) for the rear.
Tools needed to adjust damping - usually just a flat head skrewdriver.

Pull up google & start researching how to PROPERLY adjust your motorcycle's suspension.
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Last edited by OreoGaborio; 04-20-2007 at 03:45 PM.
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