KTM Adventure-lowering the suspension internal mods

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by bmwktmbill, Apr 11, 2006.

  1. bmwktmbill

    bmwktmbill Traveler

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    Hello everyone,
    My suspension is in a pile and I am ready to tear into it to drop the seat height 2-3 inches by internally modifying the suspension.
    Anyone done this? Advice? I tried lowering links but was not happy with the results.
    Bill in Tomahawk, WI.
    #1
  2. holycaveman

    holycaveman Long timer

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    For the shock, There is a couple of ways to do this. The easiest way is add a cushion behind the base valve. This will cause the shaft to ride further up in the shock body. I would only go no more than an inch though.
    #2
  3. bmwktmbill

    bmwktmbill Traveler

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    Cave,
    An inch just doesn't get it. I am 5'10 and travel with a hundred pounds of gear. I hate it when the damn machine falls on me. I gotta get both feet on the ground.
    Bill in Hatchet Creek, WI
    #3
  4. ErrinV

    ErrinV D Boon!

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    What didn't you like about the lowering links? I've just lowered my bike just under 2 inches using the Kouba Links and am pretty happy. I also slid the forks up and put on a lower seat. Now I can comfortably put a foot down. I haven't noticed any drawbacks of having less clearance yet, but maybe I will. :dunno

    I'll follow this thread to see if there's a better way to lower it.


    Errin
    #4
  5. Surly

    Surly surly adventurer

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    I have a set of Kouba links in my tool box if you want to try them out
    PM me your address and I will send them to you

    I used them on my Baja trip because the bike felt scary tall with the bags. Dont use them any more tho'
    #5
  6. KenR

    KenR Long timer

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    I just had my suspension revalved and resprung. My suspension guy was suprised to find that the Adventure already had spacers in the fork and shock to lower it, installed from the factory. He said without them, the bike would probably be 2" taller - stock!

    I wonder if those spacers could simply be made longer to lower it more?
    #6
  7. Arch

    Arch Incurable Gearhead

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    Guys, even with just over an inch of lowering, if running knobbies, an LC4 Adventure will bottom hard on big hits. The suspension also works differently because you're already into where the linkage thinks bumps are. I ran the links for a while and then swapped things back after a big desert ride. 'Course, for casual dual-sport usage it won't be much of a problem, but be advised that your suspension will change, and if you're pounding offroad and/or a bigger rider, your knobs will meet your inner fender.

    I'd contact Boejangles for a custom scooped out seat instead. :thumb
    #7
  8. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    So my bike could be 2" taller?!? :evil

    Arch, it was my understanding that the WP suspension could be upgraded to suit the rider and their style practically 'without limit'. If a top shelf mountain bike suspension can be setup to absorb 60' drops (I assume or an MX suspension), then ours should be able to be resprung/revalved to accomodate much without bottoming out.

    Perhaps I read your post wrong?
    #8
  9. ErrinV

    ErrinV D Boon!

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    So did you end up lowering your 640 differently, or is it just stock now? Besides a seat, what are the better ways to lower the bike?


    Errin
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  10. Buckster

    Buckster Banned

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    Bend the swing arm and fit a 16" rear wheel.
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  11. meat popsicle

    meat popsicle Ignostic

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    That only works on those poser-Aprilia bikes mang. :amazon
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  12. Arch

    Arch Incurable Gearhead

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    I'm sure the shocks can be made to work shorter, but this ain't about the shock. As with lowering links, a shorter shock changes where your linkage thinks the wheel is in its travel. Remember that it isn't linear. All I know is that on mine, the suspension was more willing to compress with the lowering links in place. I adjusted the shock to fight it, but the thing never felt the same. Always felt like I was into its travel, if that makes any sense. Not horribly so, but I wanted to stop the knobs ripping into the bike's undersides anyway, so I went back to stock.

    Again, with dual-sporty tires like stock Saharas, it's probably no worries. Ditto on the rear suspension's travel. For a 90/10 street/dirt LC4, it's probably no worries. I rarely even ride mine outside of the rough stuff, though, so I want all the travel it was built with.
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  13. Arch

    Arch Incurable Gearhead

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    Stock height, you just get used to it. Sidestand makes for easier dismounts in full gear, btw. I wanna get a Boejangles seat for it, but spare pennies are few. If I ever do, I'll just have him scoop it out a bit. But like I said above, lowered might work well for you. Just depends on how the bike gets used. I'd take up Surly on the offer to try out the links. :thumb
    #13
  14. bikemoto

    bikemoto Tyre critic

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    Which lowering links did you use? That is, how much lower?

    With the Emig 28mm (1.25") links and the forks pulled through 25mm, my bike is easier to handle on the street. I'd like to do some back-to-back testing in off-road conditions versus standard. Even lowered it is too tall, so I'm wondering if I'll really notice that extra inch when man-handling the bike. If not, it might be better to have the suspension all standard for better handling on-the-move when seat height isn't an issue.
    #14
  15. Arch

    Arch Incurable Gearhead

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    1.25"

    [​IMG]
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  16. Surly

    Surly surly adventurer

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    The bike sits high because it has ground clearance (for off road use :wink: )
    Lowering the seat is a compromise
    Lowering links are a compromise
    Sliding forks up the tripples are a compromise

    It might sounds like I am being a dick but....
    Keep your feet on the pegs where they belong
    Thats the deal. Thats how bikes work best. We all know that and we all put our feet down at one time or another :cry

    If you had a bike with 12" suspension travel and a 30" seat height you'd blow your knees out going from sitting to standing all day not to mention its be cramped worse than a gixxer

    Anyway I am ranting.:lol3
    Lowering bikes is something lots of folks do and I do see why but I think it ruins a good motorcycle

    Still if anyone wants to try my Kouba links they can and decide for themselves. I expect that they will end up taking them off just like I did :freaky
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  17. ErrinV

    ErrinV D Boon!

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    There's lots of good information in this thread. I'm second guessing the lowering links I put in now. I'm going on a ride to the desert this weekend so I'll pay close attention to how the bike is handling (bottoming out, rubbing). If I notice anything I'll probably remove the links. I think one thing that may be in my favor is I only weigh 160lbs so I'm one of the few people that KTM had in mind when setting up the stock suspension.

    Errin
    #17
  18. bikemoto

    bikemoto Tyre critic

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    Surly, I'm with you all the way on that one. I only put my feet down when I'm stopped - or about to! :cry My concern is stopping without falling over, and getting going again, in rough terrain. Standing-start manouveres, that kind of thing. It's no big deal on gravel roads, but when it gets more technical it becomes an issue. I'm willing to adapt in order to have a much better bike when it is mobile!

    The guy who fettled my DR-Z suspension totally agrees with you. He's lowered a few bikes at people's insistence, even though he's advised them against it - mainly because it screws up the suspension operation as mention in this thread. This is a suspension specialist who can use all the tricks to best compensate for the grief he's causing - he still says it's too much of a compromise.

    His advice for my Adventure: back off the preload and compression damping all the way.
    #18
  19. lvdukerider

    lvdukerider Las Vegas Nevada

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    Im just curious, but does anyone know how KTM shortened the suspention on the Duke II front and rear? Im 6' 4" 225 lbs, tall bikes are no problem for me and I would actualy prefer mine to be abit taller if it wasent a major operation.
    #19
  20. Surly

    Surly surly adventurer

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    A man after Warewolf and Surly heart :lol3
    #20