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Old 05-13-2012, 12:25 AM   #16
Gnarly Adventurer
enkil's Avatar
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: On the road
Oddometer: 153
I'm happy with the current ESA setup. Maybe i don't ride as hard.
Having fun while at it...
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Old 05-13-2012, 10:54 AM   #17
Still On Training Wheels
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Las Vegas Baby!
Oddometer: 436
It's not that I ride hard but I do spend about 18,000 miles a year on my bike, some of it working as a Marshal, Photo-Moto pilot or USAC Moto-Ref for bike races and marathons. We can go from 3-4 mph on a hill climb to 60-70+ mph on a descent in seconds and then 20 fast laps around an urban downtown crit course with a wide variety of surfaces and transitions in the corners. Combine that with sometimes having a videographer or photographer on the back and I started to notice some "wish it did" or "wish it didn't" do XYZ for the factory ESA system.

I met with Ohlins at the International Motorcycle Show in Long Beach back in December and that was the beginning of our dialogue that led me to give their system a go.

With only six race days in the last three weeks and a road trip from LA to Vegas I'm very happy but I have much to learn about the myriad of subtle suspension dynamics. All I know for now is the bike's suspension is feeling more responsive and it's definitely transformed the way I use my ESA and the handling of the bike. If you're used to regular ESA as I was, there's a slight but positive learning curve. For instance, when I power-on to accelerate hard with my bike in a tight curve, the rear end no longer "digs in", instead the bike is responding quickly to it. It's hard to explain.

If you're truly a knowledgeable shock guy with many years of experience with shocks you may have a more technical evaluation since I'm just a working rider and go by how my bike feels and handles.

Las Vegas

2015 1200GS Adventure
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Old 05-13-2012, 12:48 PM   #18
Studly Adventurer
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Joined: Feb 2002
Location: Charleston, SC
Oddometer: 537
Suspension- Ohlins

I have a 07 GSA.

I weigh 300 @ 6'4". Stock shocks just felt week.

I had a KTM 520 dirt bike with custom setup, Honda 400 with Race TEch, and BMW LT-03 with Wilber shocks.

I rode the 2010 GS with ESA. really like it, however, with my weight, I find that I have to run it at the two up setting. Really sweet that you can make adjustments on the fly! Sad when you have to replace- $$$.

So, I have Ohlins on the GSA. Replaced stock after about 6k miles. At first, they felt OK. I reduced the Compression Dampening by 4 clicks. Now it rides better than the LT!! When in the mountains, I raise the preload.

What is the difference?

Tracking- you will notice that the wheels track rough roads far better than stock.
Ride- you will find that the hit from bumps are absorbed far better and you will have more confidence in your self and bike.

Worth it?


If I weighed 180, it mike not be as big a deal, but I passed that weight in middle school.
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