Wild Dog Adventure Riding

General => General Bike Related Banter => Topic started by: wobbler on June 17, 2016, 10:37:44 am

Title: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: wobbler on June 17, 2016, 10:37:44 am
Ok, the story goes a little something like this....

I have a cheapskate 200cc Chinese supposedly offroad bike for use in Mozambique.
It is what it is - cheap wheels to muck around on and have some fun with in the bush.
Besides the regular fixing of bits that have fallen off and the preventative maintenance which happens after just about every ride they have held up fairly well.
Now their main failing is the very poor suspension. Front shocks cannot be set. It's the old tube with some oil and a spring in type. The rear is not much better, but atleast we could crank the springs to maximum tension and improve it slightly. Still bottoms out a lot though.

Now the question - to improve the front can I start adding small amounts of oil to stiffen things up a bit or will that not do anything?
Progressive springs are probably an overkill and will need to be brought in from SA.
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: sidetrack on June 17, 2016, 10:44:49 am
I know on the DR650 they they stiffen the front springs by adding PVC spacers, do this at your own risk though  :biggrin:
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: lecap on June 17, 2016, 10:56:04 am
Ride it as it is.
Or buy something decent.

Running a higher oil level in the forks adds a little bit of progression but does not make the springs harder or a very poor set up good. It also does not make the fancy looking but nothing inside to work with Chinese forks any better. It will put more strain onto the oil seals.

I know on the DR650 they they stiffen the front springs by adding PVC spacers, do this at your own risk though  :biggrin:

You can not stiffen a spring by adding pre - load. The spring rate is a constant.

In case of the DR650(SE) adding pre - load to the fork springs is pointless. It basically converts the progressive (OEM) fork spring into a linear spring. Yes it does make the front feel harder. As in uncomfortable and harsh.

Adding pre - load to any fork spring without carefully checking a few things is pretty dangerous too. A spring which compresses to block length before the forks bottom out will destroy the damper piston and most likely end in a crash. Plenty of OEM springs also already have a tendency to sag. If you add preload you make things worse as the spring will sag more and become even softer.
The same applies to rear shocks and their springs.

Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: wobbler on June 17, 2016, 12:18:54 pm
Thanks Lecap. I thought as much.
I suppose I just need to slow it down a bit.
Offload its ok because the trails are smooth, its mainly on the high traffic areas that the roads are badly rutted.
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: Grumpleton on June 17, 2016, 05:16:38 pm
I have seen the terrain you two ride in :o ; doesn’t blame the bike blame the rider,  :deal:
 and possibly the arc welding on the frame  oh and the burnouts on the veranda?  :pot:

and riding in the mud with burnouts at the end.
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: wobbler on June 17, 2016, 06:18:54 pm
Don't suck all the joy out of life!
 :laughing4:

I still blame the suspension! I wouldn't be struggling with my Katooms suspension!
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: Seaprojects on June 17, 2016, 06:20:57 pm
Guilty as charged !
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: superfoxi on June 17, 2016, 06:33:39 pm
Let me know if you really want to throw money at that bike. I have a nice set of fully adjustable 40 and 43mm WP forks.
They are fully adjustable and in very good condition...
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: wobbler on June 17, 2016, 06:37:06 pm
I'd love to, but the bike only cost in the region of R10k brand new!
One really can't justify spending good money on them sadly!
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: Grumpleton on June 17, 2016, 08:09:24 pm
but at least you two are having fun on those two bikes , the best 10 K you have spent in Moz., and they have gone to more extremes than most of the bikes that get braged  about on this forum including my naartjie.
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: Grumpleton on June 17, 2016, 08:11:07 pm
Guilty as charged !

Welcome Mike.
Title: Re: "Upgrading" cheapass suspension.
Post by: nickza on June 19, 2016, 11:19:52 am
Let me know if you really want to throw money at that bike. I have a nice set of fully adjustable 40 and 43mm WP forks.
They are fully adjustable and in very good condition...

I have a rear WP PDS shock you could fit to finish that off nicely  ;D