03 954 fork preload question - Honda Motorcycles - FireBlades.org
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post #1 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 7:45 AM Thread Starter
 
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03 954 fork preload question

I am in the process of setting the suspension up and cannot find any preload adjustments on my forks.

I took the two retaining clips off the top caps and there is no preload adjustments, no typical adjustment lines. I have obviously the compression adjustment on top adjusted with a screw driver, and the preload on the bottom of the forks again adjusted with a screw driver.

Am I missing something here? Every other bike, including my SV650 has preload adjustments.
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post #2 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 8:10 AM
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Re: 03 954 fork preload question

Quote:
Originally Posted by nukinfuts View Post
I am in the process of setting the suspension up and cannot find any preload adjustments on my forks.

I took the two retaining clips off the top caps and there is no preload adjustments, no typical adjustment lines. I have obviously the compression adjustment on top adjusted with a screw driver, and the preload on the bottom of the forks again adjusted with a screw driver.

Am I missing something here? Every other bike, including my SV650 has preload adjustments.
On all 3 of my 954's, the preload's where blue anodised 22mm(from memory) adjusters on top of the forks legs under the compression screw.

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post #3 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 10:23 AM
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Re: 03 954 fork preload question

The preload adjusters are on top of the fork bolts.
It would not be uncommon for them to be screwed all the way in on a 954.
From memory I think it's a 22mm hex.

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post #4 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 11:35 AM
 
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Re: 03 954 fork preload question

Just to clarify, the small screw at the top of the fork is not compression, it is rebound dampening. The screw at the bottom of the leg is compression dampening. The large nut at the top is your spring preload as the others have said, which is what you're after I believe.
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post #5 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 11:56 AM
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Re: 03 954 fork preload question

Just to clarify further, the adjusters are damping adjustments not dampening adjustments ;-)

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post #6 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 1:03 PM
 
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Re: 03 954 fork preload question

Right on!...thanks blade. We must keep things accurate!
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post #7 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 6:30 PM
 
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Re: 03 954 fork preload question

I just set up my suspension this past weekend after receiving an informative class from Keith Code.

While the rebound is on the top and compression is on the bottom for the forks. The shock is reversed...compression is the top screw and rebound is the bottom screw.

I should have turned the pre-load all the way in (because fork springs on 54's are notoriously weak) I left them a few turns out so I have some spring. I think the spring rate for stock fork springs is 0.71 kg/mm and what is needed for a 200 lbs rider is more like 0.95 kg/mm.
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post #8 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 7:05 PM
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Re: 03 954 fork preload question

Quote:
Originally Posted by jesse954 View Post
I just set up my suspension this past weekend after receiving an informative class from Keith Code.

While the rebound is on the top and compression is on the bottom for the forks. The shock is reversed...compression is the top screw and rebound is the bottom screw.

I should have turned the pre-load all the way in (because fork springs on 54's are notoriously weak) I left them a few turns out so I have some spring. I think the spring rate for stock fork springs is 0.71 kg/mm and what is needed for a 200 lbs rider is more like 0.95 kg/mm.
You are correct about the reversed damping adjustments on the shock.
The normal travel in the preload adjusters don't limit how much "spring" you have. They simply "lower" the bottom of the fork cap so that the bike sits up higher on the spring. If you put spacers in between the preload adjuster and the spring then you would be "pre-loading" the spring by reducing its length and would risk coil-bind reducing the travel in the fork.
A linear rate 1kg/mm fork spring set for 25mm of sag theoretically means that you have 50kg of the bike's weight supported on the two springs. When the forks are fully compressed say 120mm under brakes you have 240kg of weight transfer onto them. If you were to pre-load the springs by compressing them 20mm first (actually shortening them by putting 20kg of load into them) then they will require another 40kg of load to bottom them out. If, by shortening them they become coil-bound 10mm sooner though, they'll actually only take 20kg more weight on them before mechanically bottoming the spring.
It's worth remembering that the tyre also acts as a progressive "spring" in your front suspension that requires more and more weight to compress it each mm.

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post #9 of 9 Old 09-25-2008, 10:12 PM
 
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Re: 03 954 fork preload question

awesome explanation of what pre-load does
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