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Old 01-19-2013, 06:56 PM   #73185
Gnarly Adventurer
Joined: Aug 2010
Location: Anchorage, Alaska
Oddometer: 189
Originally Posted by acesandeights View Post
FYI, suspension, gearing impressions.

Got my bike back this afternoon from a local suspension guru and nothing is spewing fork/shock oil! But, even better than that is the way the bike feels. It sure doesn't ride like a DR650 anymore, at least nothing like a stock one. I am shocked (notice the pun!) at the difference the emulators and shock shaft assembly have made. Granted, I've only put about 40 miles on it since I picked it up, but having the adjustable rebound is incredible. The bike is planted.

I may have gone a bit too stiff with the springs (.70 front and 8.1 rear), I'm still figuring it out. It's a relatively stiff ride, but the fact that it doesn't bounce around on wash board is phenom. I need to find a place that's significantly more rutted or wash boarded out because most of the stuff around here has a nice layer of new gravel over a frozen layer of dirt, but the dirt roads nearest my house are completely different to ride with the new suspension.

I just wanted to post this for those on the fence about upgrading the suspension. It probably doesn't matter what you do as an upgrade, it's probably all for the better, but if you go all out and get new springs and emulators and a rear shock with adjustability, I think you'll be surprised at how different your bike will feel and perform.

BTW, I also changed the front and rear sprockets (one down in the front, one up in the back). I guess it's got to be about an 8 or 9% change and it has made a pretty good difference, and definitely not too low for around town, commuting and gravel roads. I lost a little top-end, but I didn't use it anyway (over 5k miles and it's never been on an interstate).
Absolutely! Young or new people always want performance mods, and limit their definition of performance to speed and power because power numbers are easy to compare and brag about. But, real speed involves turns too, and a confidence inspiring suspension will add more performance to most bikes than engine mods ever will. Before adding that loud 1 additional horsepower $400 wide open can, absolutely work on the suspension!! Good, well-adjusted suspension will go a LONG way towards making you a better and happier rider. I haven't experienced a stock DR, but mine with up-rated springs front and rear, intiminators, and rebuilt shock is more stable and confidence inspiring than my sportbike.
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