FJR corner carver: buy Traxxion or sell for FZ1/etc?

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by superkram, Feb 11, 2013.

  1. elementalg20

    elementalg20 Been here awhile

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    I've not even ridden an FJR, I did own a couple of VFR's though. With what you're talking bout I'd probably try to mod the FJR as well.

    In terms of modding suspension, I've got no idea what effect if any it'll have on the shaft drive side of things, but if you've never swapped shocks/springs etc you may find your self amazed at the difference that it makes. Even small upgrades can be quite noticeable, at least it certainly was for me and I'm an average rider on my best day.
    #21
  2. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Bitch called me a feminist.

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    So you prefer unreliable or boring? :D

    My "unreliable" 2000 Speed Triple is pushing 90,000 miles on the engine, other than normal consumables I've never had to pull so much as the valve cover unless it was scheduled maintenance or I was modifying something.


    :edited to be less abrasive. ride what you want.
    #22
  3. superkram

    superkram Church parking lot rider

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    Grin. Nothing to do with reliability. It's my German blood. I think classic Jags and Ferraris are pretty, but I always end up sticking with the BMWs and Porsches I grew up with. Ditto the RX7s and Japanese bikes from my father.
    #23
  4. superkram

    superkram Church parking lot rider

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    Anyway, heard back from the folks at Traxxion. The FJR setup with the AK20 fronts and Penske 8975 non-reservoir would run me about $2100 + GA tax, including installation and setup.

    I was hoping for something in the $1600-1800 range including taxes and setup, but doesn't seem like there's many better options. Thoughts??



    Hi xxx,<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    We are very familiar with the FJR, Lee owned one of those as well, so our set up is very dialed in. Current AK20 cartridge kit pricing is $1099.95. It is a drop in kit if you can change fork seals, but if you want us to service your forks and install the AK20s we charge $225.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    http://www.traxxion.com/AK-20AxxionCartridgeKit.aspx<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Penske has 3 models for your bike. The new 8975 is a shock with no reservoir, but it does have a floating piston separating the oil and nitrogen, like the more expensive reservoir shocks. The 8975 is adjustable for preload, rebound and compression damping, but has no ride height adjustment. The 8975 retails for $795. The 8983 is the traditional double adjustable shock, with a remote reservoir. It is adjustable for preload, rebound, compression damping, and ride height. Retail is $925. The 8987 is the triple adjustable shock, with preload, ride height, rebound, and high and low speed compression. Retail is $1225.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    I generally recommend the 8975 for FJR owners. It is an excellent bang for the buck, and very similar in quality to the 8983, only lacking the ride height adjuster.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    If you order both the shock and the AK20s at the same time, I will offer a 10% discount. If you bring us the bike, we can get you done in a day. There is an additional charge of $85 to remove/replace the forks and $85 to remove/replace the shock.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Let me know if you have further questions.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Best regards,<o:p></o:p>
    Dan<o:p></o:p>
    #24
  5. richarddacat

    richarddacat I can't be satisfied

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    #25
  6. nevermind

    nevermind sLOW Rider

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    Not too bad! You get new boingers all the way around and you know you have one of the best suspensions available. I'll probably wind up doing something very similar to my FJR in the near future....
    #26
  7. fred flintstone

    fred flintstone Been here awhile

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    Well do it yourself and save install costs, should get you in at your price point or below. Or just do the rear shock yourself, not as much of a job as the forks, and have the shop do the forks. Have done the Traxxion/Penske upgrade myself on another bike. This was for a Honda Blackbird but it was not that big of a deal, just needed to be patient and methodical. Gigantic difference in handling and worth every penny.
    #27
  8. SnappNBrrap

    SnappNBrrap Been here awhile

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    if you want to tear up the corners you probably dont want an FZ1. it just has a really long wheelbase and doesnt feel super flickable. ive heard if you put a taller tire on the FZ it is a little better and balances out speedo error and helps the MPGs a bit. but it is a rocket out of the corner, guaranteed.

    The VFR800 is my pick for the best all round motorcycle period but its all preference.
    #28
  9. pne

    pne Long timer

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    IMO you can't change the inherent handling characteristics of a bike with suspension mods. I would never sink 2 grand into suspenders. To change a bikes handling the cheapest way is a more aggressive tire, which you are limited to on the FJR, the second way is to change the suspension geometry, which the shock should allow you to do. But once you start fiddling with these things you are getting away from the OEM engineering of the bike, and without a good idea of what you're doing a lot of times will make the bike worse. Lots of people will disagree, but the best way to improve an older bikes suspension is simply upgrade to a newer model. Fork technology has come a long way in the last decade. Although the traxxion front end is a big improvement, it is a bit dated now compared to the latest stuff coming out in the OEM world. The AK20's are limited by the inherent design of the fork they are being dropped into.
    #29
  10. fred flintstone

    fred flintstone Been here awhile

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    I'm not sure what you're saying here. If you can change handling with tires you can change it with suspension components. My personal experience is handling is massively affected by suspension upgrades. Sure people can screw anything up but a good aftermarket suspension on a bike with a so-so one from the factory is one of the best mods you can make.

    I would add that for some reason my particular 07 FJR seemed to have its forks/front end not exactly set up right from the factory. I went through it with the help of my bike mechanic neighbor (thanks Gale!) setting everything to spec and aligning, and the difference in handling was amazing. Next mod for that bike will be a suspension at some point.

    In the end a suspension just does two things, keeps the tire in contact with the road and manages rates of weight transfer. Doing a better job of that will always mean better handling. First step to that is setting the bike up right (sag and factory settings). Once that is nailed you can improve components. You'll never turn a FJR into an R1 but you can make a much better handling and enjoyable FJR.

    edit: there is a lot of feedback over on the FJRforum on the Traxxion/Penske upgrade. Also group buy every year though it has expired for this year.
    #30
  11. ramon

    ramon weezin' the juice!

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    I say spend the $2100, I doubt you'll regret it. I always start with fixing the suspension first, then farkle away after that. I think front and rear Ohlins shocks for my K1300s, came to about $2300 and it was money well spent. I say go for it!
    #31
  12. curvecrazy

    curvecrazy n00b

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    Not really. In stock form it may be somewhat what you describe. Sure. Do a couple cheap mods to it such as different dogbones on the rear suspension, shock rebuild with heavier 10wt oil and cutting the front springs down and installing longer spacers to stiffen the front end and you will end up with a bike that is higher in the rear by an inch or so with better road feel all around and Yes, it will then do corners for sure. Will an outright sportbike beat you in a roundabout? Well, sure, if he is on supersport tires and you are on sport tourer's LOL. No, seriously, that happened to me. And he claimed superiority of his gsxr as the reason when the truth is I let him go cause there was no point taking the sport touring tires [michelin pilot road 1's] past the point of adhesion while he's running it out on top notch squishies. I mean, I just let off a little and right behind him still until he peeled off onto the straight and then I am going by on one wheel! Ha ha. Long bike. Don't handle? LOL You just need to set it up right. There are no peg feelers on mine. Ground right off and into the end of the peg like eons ago. Over 60K miles on her now and still rippin. My commuter. My stunt bike. My go to bike. My do it all bike. I'll say this. You have to be determined and skilled to leave a properly set up FZ1 skillfully piloted on good rubber but even on sport touring tires. Good brakes. Good engine once you clean up the carb. They are sensitive to air filters so keep that clean or replace it every so often if you want it to rip right. Headlights are all that outstanding. fwiw Bike is all day comfortable too. Enjoy.
    #32
  13. richarddacat

    richarddacat I can't be satisfied

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    cont. -

    Love the Traxxion upgrade, and only did the forks, rear shock was rebuilt not long ago.
    Great improvement, riding on "tighter" rails, feels lighter, no more brake dives, falls right into place at every curve and it even ignores rain grooves.
    Besides the Russell, this is the second best improvement I've made to the bike. :clap
    #33
  14. SimpleSimon

    SimpleSimon Aspiring advrider

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    You should also factor in the depreciation hit you are going to take on selling the bike. Have you looked at other options like Ohlins, Racetech?
    #34
  15. rockmurf

    rockmurf IBA #31100

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    I don't think I read anything about rider training to improve your bikes capabilities. I had the traxxion fork and shock upgrade done to my 06 fjr and it was an improvement but my stock stuff had 50k miles on them. I also had an 06 fz1 because I too wanted something lighter to flick around. Hated the 06 fz1, bad/hard suspension and totally uncomfortable. FJR is in my opinion one of the best motorcycles out there. It is almost the total package. Canyon carver maybe not but I know some people, check the fjr forum, that really haul ass on theirs. There is no perfect bike and it is man's mission in life to pursue that unobtainable goal. Have fun and ride safe.
    #35
  16. curvecrazy

    curvecrazy n00b

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    No problems with resale value if you pull off the upgrades. The shock can be switched right back out with the oem unit. The aftermarket sold seperate. In fact I just bought a Penske 8983 for my FZ1 that was exactly that situation. It's on the 01 FZ1 now and seems to be head and shoulders over the stocker. Its got ride height adjustability too so I went back to the stock dogbones and raised the rear instead via the shock. Only put 100 miles on her before work but big difference is apparent. The old shock had too light of a spring, was maxed out on the damping and likely due to the too light spring was wallowing around quite a lot. This shock put an end to that. Just literally put it on, set the static sag around 30-35mm and set compression and rebound in the middle of their respective ranges. Ended up clicking in two more clicks of compression and its working pretty good right now. Got the proper recommended spring supposed to be in the mail soon but, heh? Its working pretty good with a spring listed as 25# too heavy. I'm thinking it will only get better.
    #36
  17. gixxersteph

    gixxersteph Been here awhile

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    I agree about money well spent on suspension, however the Ohlins route on my K1200S did not yield the same result that you encountered. Too bad because I liked the bike, except for its suspension.

    I have spent money on several other bikes and agree that here the benefits of your hard earned cash are most noticed. If you love the FJR spend the dish and really enjoy the bike. Let me know when I can sign up for a test ride when it is done.
    #37
  18. ramon

    ramon weezin' the juice!

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    After three pages of replies, what was your final decision :deal
    #38
  19. superkram

    superkram Church parking lot rider

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    Still struggling to answer that one. Just got my tax refund. :norton
    #39
  20. superkram

    superkram Church parking lot rider

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    I think I'm gonna sell the R1100RS and CB350 for a down payment toward finding a nice used K1300S.

    For a year now, I've been moving an R1150GS around the western US for fly/ride trips, and keeping it with various friends between trips. Not bringing the GS home anytime soon, but I'm ready to get a newer/nicer bike than the R1100RS for daily use and slab.
    #40