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Discussion in 'Japanese polycylindered adventure bikes' started by Greg the pole, Aug 7, 2019.
Would be for the rebound. Twin chamber type forks have comp at top, rebound at bottom.
It seems much easier to get the ATAS uppers and shim, then put some good valves in there. What would that give up to the KYB SSS's ?
Stiffness is one of the biggest things I noticed between the ATAS and the Ohlins (and im assuming the SSS would be similar). It really is a big difference in the handling and response.
ATAS way easier but quite a bit of performance difference.SSS is classified as one of the best competition forks ever made.Also 45mm vs 49mm tubes.For most adv use big time overkill.If you push bike way fast offroad they would hold up better and have much wider tuning option's. The AT fork was put into production in 1989 (cr models)and sss in 2005 and won the heart of most racers.But I think big time overkill for me as do not push bike offroad fast out of pure survival instinct.If my tubes wear again most likely will just switch to ATAS tubes as I am not desert racing the bike.Will be servicing forks this winter and will be interesting to see how Rick's hardcoat held up.They have 10k miles on them now since hardcoat and work smooth.
Also sss forks are closed cartridge and a pain to service compared to open cartridge forks.closed cartridges are sort of a bitch to bleed.
might want to checkout g perkins report , regarding ohlins and his service findings on his AT.
I've got a valve check and fork disassembly planned for the winter. Very likely I'm going to switch my tubes for the ATAS uppers and lowers, and re-valve forks and shock. The SKF seals did their job after my fork warranty, and have held up for two seasons. Zero issues. I will report back on my fork wear. I'm not even curious (not quite true lol), I know what I'm gonna find, I no longer care if there's wear, in general this bike has done what I wanted it to do, and I will actually be pretty happy if my next big bike (a long ways off) makes me as happy as this one.
It might not be the worst decision for anyone planning suspension upgrades in the near future to wait and see what, if any, improvements are in store for the updated 2020 AT and if there are improvements how transferable to pre-'20 models.
or if they have tubeless wheels that can be bought for the existing models!
I've been holding off on my order for this very reason. I went on a nice long ride this weekend and not once did I think I just had to replace the forks. I need better riding gear, so I think I'm going to hold off and see what next year brings... More reports, more experiences, hopefully more experimentation.
There is polish compant that make new uper tubes for AT I think can do it in any size and shape.
They look like hard ano stock tubes.
They make completly new tubes.
Indeed they do.
Didn't translate initially.
Good to know.
So, may be these people could make something like ATAS outer tubes but even thicker to avoid flex? And... what about the coating?
I'm trying to understand how exactly the SSS conversion would benefit me vs. ATAS uppers. I see SSS setups on Ebay for ~$500 and iirc ATAS uppers are about $800.
What I want is primarily better on-pavement behavior without worsening off-pavement behavior, but if I can also make it better off-pavement I'll appreciate that. I understand the Ohlins would achieve that but now it sounds like that's not a durable option.
Most of my riding with the AT is street, with an occasional jaunt down a dirt/forest road. Most of my suspension complaints with the AT is how couch-like it is on road when I ride it hard. I don't push it hard off-pavement (I save that for the KLX) but I don't want it to suck there either (or I would have kept the N1K). I already have stiffer springs but the damping just can't keep up, and with the stiction/ano wear I know I'll be replacing them at some point. The question is "what do I replace them with?"
I'd hate to lose any more braking power as I feel the AT is already weak in that area, so the SSS isn't a slam dunk.
So the SSS forks are better than revalved ATAS forks simply because the 49mm diameter makes them better? Or is there something else inherent in the design that can't be modified/revalved in the AT/ATAS forks? I've done RT GV on prior streetbikes and have been very happy with the results.
Do you have a link?
SSS fork internals are modern. Way bigger valving,closed cartridge,Tight tolerance. AT forks compared to them is like comparing a 76 duster to a modern Corvette. On the other hand if you revalve stock forks they work great up to point.That point is going into risking bodily harm pushing a over 500 lb bike into speeds offroad that people that prefer not to have broken bones don't do.I have a gold valves and modified rebound stack in my forks.They work pretty damn nice and way better than stock everywhere. Rick at cogent also sells custom drop in revalving kits for your forks.600 dollar used forks will need rebuild then make custom mount to hold brake caliper.Now buy a master with smaller piston to run only 1 caliper and the price starts climbing.Then the stock is valving might need a tune as it came off a 240 lb dirt bike.The more I think about it i will definitely go atas uppers lol.Also gold valve not really needed as stock valve can be made to work great just by changing shims.For your needs revalve and new uppers would make you happy.I would suggest a call to cogent for a premade valve stack or ship your cartridges to him and have him do it.The stock cartridges work fine for non race speed use.
I've been messing around with my forks for a while now - 2016 internals (revalved several times), stiffer springs (several iterations), and 2018 ATAS uppers and lowers.
My biggest gripe is that they don't work particularly well on road, nor do they work particularly well off road.
Compared to the stock forks they are much much better.
I get pissed off just thinking about how poor the stock forks were on-road:
- They would bind up just riding down smooth paved roads, they wouldn't move at all until you hit a sizable bump. This was really annoying, and I think it is the normal complaint that people have with this bike.
- When leaned over in a long corner they would bind up and the front would just chatter and/or skip across every road imperfection. They felt like they were damper rod forks when leaned over. I didn't buy a new bike to have it handle like a CB750.
- Binding on square edged bumps. On sharp edges (potholes, frost heaves, rocks and ruts) the forks would bind up and shock my wrists.
All of this was much improved after the ATAS parts + revalve. I did everything at once, so I can't tell you what was the biggest contribution to the improvement.
Even with all the hardware and valving changes, they aren't up to my expectations. They still aren't compliant and supple on road, they still bind up more than they should, and they still aren't planted in long sweeping corners. Are they much better than they were? Yes. Are they as good as any other bike that I own? Nope. Even after all the work they aren't very good (disclaimer - I go thru the suspension on every bike I own).
The stock forks *function* OK off road, they are just too softly sprung and under damped. They would still bind up on square edges, but the friction issue wasn't really an issue when used off road.
On my 1st revalve with the new 2018 parts I went way stiff, and the forks were surprisingly good off road. They'd absorb hits and had good bottoming resistance and I could put the front of the bike where I wanted it, it was a HUGE improvement on dirt....
.... BUT on road they sucked. Poor rolling isolation, way too much damping, and very uncomfortable on those long highway slogs. Even when riding fast in the twisties they were overdamped.
On subsequent changes I have softened the bike up substantially. It is now at the point where it is too firm on road, and too soft off road. Compromise.
I don't have any hard evidence to back this up, but I assume that my damping limitations are due to the tiny pistons, poor design of the low speed adjusters, simple valve stack, and small damping rods.
As I do a lot of 2-up riding, twin discs up front is a must. If someone comes up with a way of putting twin discs on a SSS front end I'll try that next.
Jeff covered this above: SSS is more than just the stiffness due to increased tube diameter. SSS has bigger pistons, and more modern design. The AT stuff is very small and very archaic. My 160# RS125 has the same piston diameters as the stock AT forks, and the RS125 even has 12mm rods vs the 10mm ones in the AT (bigger damping rods displace more oil thru the base valves).
I am right there with you.Not the best forks but at least they are decent now.I have mine valves a we bit more on dirt side as I like back roads mostly. If I was a highway guy would definitely lighten them up a bit.I guess in our case honda hung a pig on a earring lol.I am just sort of tired of working on it and just ride it now.This winter going to lighten up the stacks in front a little.