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Author Topic: Suspension setup  (Read 1629 times)

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Offline vtrgeoff

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Suspension setup
« on: November 22, 2016, 12:33:02 PM »
Hey All

I know I'm renewing an old topic, and thinking way too far in advance, but I need to locate a shop (local to the NCR) where I can take my bike and have the suspension set up properly.

The bike is a 2008 Moto Guzzi California Vintage.  I bought it from a fellow in the Big Smoke who fancied himself a mechanic.  He bought quality aftermarket suspension components and installed them himself.  Right out of the box.  Sag, compression, rebound were never set.

I paid a visit to Kyle (Windmill Motorsports) and we were able to dial in the rear (Gazi) shocks.  But for the front (Matris) suspension we were unable to get the static sag within the recommended range.  The bike will wallow alarmingly when pressed on a twisty stretch of road.  IMHO this is not the stuff that a backyard tech (myself) should attempt to adjust.  Time to call in the 'Pros from Dover'.

I have spent the past summer sorting the issues the PO introduced into the fueling system.  I have remapped the FI and now need to locate someone capable of balancing the throttle bodies and setting the TPS to finalize that.

Please dont send me to Wheelsport (the local Guzzi dealer).  Been there/done that - and I wasn't impressed.

Same deal with Corsa Mechanica in Toronto - they saftied the bike with zero material on the rear brake pads and told me the high idle (1800rpm) was to keep the running lites from draining the battery.  George is a nice guy, but he's a snake oil salesman.

Anyhow, sorry for the rant, but it's a snowy november day and I'm looking to next spring....

Cheers!

G



 

Offline Oxmach

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2016, 04:36:41 PM »
Not really NCR but for my money I go to John Sharrard - Acellerated Tecnologies for Suspension and non performance ie Dyno work. 

Only shop I have ever used and not found a single issue after. 

A bit of a drive to Buckhorn but in my opinion absolutely worth it.

Offline AlanB

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2016, 03:33:09 AM »
I'm surprised you couldn't get the front sag set. Sounds like maybe some new springs are needed.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2016, 03:57:58 AM by AlanB »

Offline smokey

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2016, 11:20:38 AM »
I believe stephane at 613 motosports has a fellow who may do it, I know he sent the forks on my bike to get the springs and emulators installed.
Mike, Orleans, ON
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Offline karl_1052

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2016, 03:08:53 AM »
Maybe the springs he purchased were too light for your weight?

Or he told you stories about installing aftermarket suspension components?

I would consider purchasing springs for your weight, and rebuilding the front end. that way you will know what you have and what you are dealing with.

It might cost a little more, but the peace of mind will be worth it, and it might actually be cheaper than bringing your bike all over hell's half acre to fix a problem that might not be there.
"If you can't annoy somebody with what you write, I think there's little point in writing." Kingsley Amis, British novelist, 1971

Offline AlanB

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2016, 03:58:45 AM »
I believe stephane at 613 motosports has a fellow who may do it, I know he sent the forks on my bike to get the springs and emulators installed.


Steph send his Stuff to Kyle @ Windmill.

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2016, 03:34:35 PM »
I'm surprised you couldn't get the front sag set. Sounds like maybe some new springs are needed.

According to Kyle, the preload spacer is too long...

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2016, 03:37:28 PM »
Not really NCR but for my money I go to John Sharrard - Acellerated Tecnologies for Suspension and non performance ie Dyno work. 

Only shop I have ever used and not found a single issue after. 

A bit of a drive to Buckhorn but in my opinion absolutely worth it.

I dont mind a daytrip to Peterborough - I was born there!

I will be contacting these folks.  I'll let you know what they have to say.

Cheers!

G

Offline crashchris

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2016, 04:06:09 AM »
Still having problems with this huh.  :sad3:

If Kyle thinks there is a mechanical issue (preload spacer) no tuner will be able to get it sorted out until that fault is fixed.




Offline smokey

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2016, 09:37:48 AM »
According to Kyle, the preload spacer is too long...

So why not just shorten the spacer? should be pretty easy to do
Mike, Orleans, ON
www.cvfr.ca
2010 Kawasaki VN1700 Voyager

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2016, 02:11:27 AM »
So why not just shorten the spacer? should be pretty easy to do

Let me correct what was said - Kyle said that there was too much preload - whether that means a too stiff spring or too long a spacer (if there is a spacer) - I dunno.  I'll let the pros work that out.

G

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2016, 02:25:12 AM »
Still having problems with this huh.  :sad3:

If Kyle thinks there is a mechanical issue (preload spacer) no tuner will be able to get it sorted out until that fault is fixed.

Hi Chris

Yeah.  Settng the rear shocks and new rubber made the bike ride-able.  This summer I focused on sorting the engine performance issues.  I found broken exhaust studs and half completed mods which impacted the fueling and performance.  I remapped the FI and found/sealed all the air leaks.  I think, short of an injector sync and resetting the TPS, that the motor is running good.

Next is fine tuning the suspension....

Cheers!

G

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2017, 03:44:24 PM »
Hey all

One of the Guzzi weboards I subscribe to has been having a discussion wrt suspension setup et al.

A link was provided explaining some of the physics involved along with some trouble shooting guides.

http://www.totalcontroltraining.net/Suspension101eBook.pdf

Cheers!

G

Offline crashchris

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2017, 08:27:00 AM »
That's a GREAT writeup. I have something similar in my iphone for quick reference at the track.

Suspension sometimes is like voodoo. It takes a keen mind to figure it out. And everyone says it's time consuming but you can only make ONE change at a time.

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2017, 12:36:26 PM »
Hi Chris

I also thought that was an excellent write-up.  And it's in layman's terms.

Under the troubleshooting guide, Problems with Forks, the Guzzi is showing symptoms of Bullet 1 - wallowing; Bullet 4 - pushes; and Bullet 7 - Hard to Turn.

Although that seems contradictory (B1 vs B4 & B7), if you consider that Kyle was unable to set the sag to within the recommended range (IIRC he was unable to bring the sag to within 2+CM of the recommended 2-3CM), the symptoms point to the same thing.

Bullet 1 - Not enough low or high speed compression damping (i.e. too much spring)
Bullet 4 - Too much spring preload (i.e. too much spring)
Bullet 7 - Too much preload (i.e. too much spring)

I have examined the exploded Matris springs and dampers diagrams and it would appear that the preload spacer is moulded to fit the Matris setup.  IMHO that would make shortening the spacer problematic.  Plus I have no idea what spring rate the PO installed.  So, rather than f**k around, I'm gonna buy a round and re-install the OEM units.  I have emailed Kyle to see if he is interested in examining the OEM bits for completeness and function with the intention of having him remove the Matris units and replace them with the stock stuff and dialing in the forks from there.  The engineers at Guzzi prolly know more about this stuff than backyard buddy ever will.  No response from Kyle yet though.

More as it happens.

Cheers!

G   

Offline crashchris

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2017, 04:18:04 AM »
Mods to suspension happen all the time. My oem lower tubes were cut to allow for more travel.

I had some zx6r forks with ohlins internals that were crazy modified.

I am sure kyle could figure it out.

If you go back to oem at least it does give you a baseline for set up and how the bike handles from factory. It may just be that the chassis of the bike tends to give you those problems. Just like gsxr's push the front without fork extenders.


 

Offline Baggsy

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2017, 06:45:11 AM »
Hey all

One of the Guzzi weboards I subscribe to has been having a discussion wrt suspension setup et al.

A link was provided explaining some of the physics involved along with some trouble shooting guides.

http://www.totalcontroltraining.net/Suspension101eBook.pdf

Cheers!

G


Do they go over that material in the courses that are being held in Toronto?
Don't buy a bike if you're afraid to drop it.

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2017, 07:39:14 AM »
Does anyone have current contact info for Kyle?

The email addy provided on his website bounces...

G

Offline crashchris

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2017, 10:40:49 AM »
613-818-3076

text is best

Offline AlanB

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2017, 08:57:26 AM »
Does anyone have current contact info for Kyle?

The email addy provided on his website bounces...

G


Info@windmillmotorsports.com  I used it this morning and it didn't bounce

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2017, 09:10:31 AM »
I received a reply this AM from my email query

"I would love to help but I'm backing off on suspension work as I have no shop space and I just purchased a cnc lathe that I need to learn and start making parts with!"

Time for Plan B.

"Ya gotta have a Plan B, Dave"

G


Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2017, 06:16:37 AM »
Plan B!

I have an appointment with John Sharrard of Accelerated Technologies to sort the suspension.

Light at the end of the tunnel!!

G

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #22 on: July 08, 2017, 08:18:56 AM »
Hey All

I spent Thursday of last week being a fly on the wall at John Sharrard's shop in Buckhorn.

Very professional setup - the shop was spotless - John, Ron, and Tyler all went out of their way to help me understand what was happening with my bike.

First off, they took measurements and set baseline preload/damping and sent me out for a ride.

When I returned and explained the handling issues from the test ride, their evaluation showed problems at both ends.

They performed a full service on the front and found a couple of small issues.  These were corrected and the forks were polished and re-assembled with new seals and one new spring (spring rate at 1.1R and 1.0L).  The preload spacers were shortened and new fork oil installed (less than OEM specs).

John was not impressed with the Gazi rear shocks - although they have lots of buttons and dials and the cool little gas cylinder - they were limited in function.  They have dual rate springs, but the amount of play left after the crossover to the heavier rate was minimal, i.e. less than an inch.  That means when the shock is under load (like in a corner) it bottoms out very quickly causing a weight shift from the front tire to the rear resulting in a head shake at slower speeds and a full on wallow at higher speeds.

His conclusion:  The Gazis (as installed) are not the correct shock for the Guzzi.  He suspects that they are too short.  I have the OEM shocks (SACHS) and they are 14" eye to eye.  I haven't measured the Gazis yet, but a quick eyeballing tells me they're not 14" long.  The PO is vertically challenged and I wouldn't be surprized to find that he bought shorter shocks to lower the bike an inch or so.  John put an Oring on one fork and a zip tie on a rear shock to measure the travel and, on the ride home, the front came up to about 1/2 of the total available, but the rear bottomed out - supporting John's analysis.

Next step is to remove/measure the Gazis and re-install the stockers.

Then we shall see what needs to be done.

More as it happens....

G

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #23 on: August 12, 2017, 04:54:45 AM »
Hey All

The latest installment (no pun intended).

So, as per John's recommendation, I re-installed the OEM shocks.  Like the Gazi's, they bottomed out with remarkable ease.  I rode to/from the Guzzi Owners Club rally in the Aderondacks - some twisties, some sketchy roads - and the SACHs just weren't up to it.  Even set to maximum preload they bottomed out way too easy.

So I ordered a set of IKON shocks from my favorite Guzzi bits supplier (MG Cycle).

The first test ride was encouraging.  I am still a little scared to commit to a high speed run, but the IKONs seemed to be less prone to hitting the bump stop under moderate cornering.  I made two test runs thru the Tatlock Rd from #7 to Wolf Grove Rd - Rebound at 3 of 4 and Preload at 2 of 3 and 3 of 3.  The higher preload felt better.

I have the bike booked with Don at Blacks Corners for new skins and bearings next week. 

The Ont Guzzi rally (in Lavigne, Ont) is coming up soon and the route there includes the 511, Black Donald Rd, and portions of 41, 118, 121, i.e. lots of bendy roads.  A good opportunity to see how the IKONs behave.

The plan, at this time, is to ride & evaluate.  Maybe pick up the next stiffer set of springs.  Then. next spring, I'll take another day trip to Buckhorn and have John set up the rear.

It has been a long process, but I do believe that the light at the end of the tunnel is NOT a train!

Cheers!

G

Offline vtrgeoff

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Re: Suspension setup
« Reply #24 on: August 29, 2017, 04:03:08 AM »
Hey All

So.  I'm home from the Ontario Guzzi Owners rally in Lavigne.  Had a great time - Bill Durst was rocking the Lavigne Tavern - there was all you could eat pretty much all the time at the Joli Voyageur campground (Rally Central).  Lots of Guzzis and the Canadian (?) factory rep was there with a new Audace and a V9 Bobber. Maybe they're starting to give a snit that they have customers here?

On to the ride and evaluation of the suspension.

In my opinion this setup is very close!  Call it a qualified success.  We rode just about every kind of road, short of dirt - I don't do dirt - The route included the 511, Black Donald Rd, Matawatchen Rd thru Venachar to Denbigh and the 68 (?) to 41 thru Bancroft 118/121/35 and the 4-lane thru Huntsville to North Bay and then 17 to Verner.  So everything from sketchy backroads to the slab.  The bike was about 50% loaded.  We didn't do crazy speeds, but there wasn't any grass growing under us (if you know what I mean).  I had new Roadriders, wheel bearings and front rotors installed at Blacks Corners tires last week.  The bike behaved admirably with the suspension setup noted in previous posts.  I experienced only one minor headshake - and that may have been rider error. 

This winter's parts list will include the heavier springs.  The spring rates overlap with the lighter units and will give me al little more choice.  Then, next spring, a trip to Sharrard's shop to fine tune everything.  After that, it's miles and smiles and looking for bendy roads.

Cheers!

G


PS  If you are riding 35 north thru Dorset - ya gotta stop at Pizza On Earth just south of Dorset.  Most excellent Pizza.

 

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