Front Fork Springs/Oil HELP! - ZX6R Forum
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post #1 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 09:49 AM Thread Starter
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Front Fork Springs/Oil HELP!

I ride monthly trackdays at NOLA Motorsports on my 2016 ZX6R. Suspension wise it is stock. I sub'd to Dave Moss and learned the ins and outs of suspension and tire wear indicators.

This last weekend I put a zip-tie on my front fork as I have finally gotten confident enough to run some solid lap times and push the bike. I bottomed out the forks 5 sessions in a row stiffening compression and adding a turn of preload between each session. I also took some rebound out of the rear until I was all the was all the way in with the screw then backed it out 1/4 a turn, and rear tire wear is still pretty bad. I am looking for suggestions as to what route you would go on what to change given my situation.

Recap:
Stock 2016 ZX6R suspension
Front ( 2 in means 2 - 360 degree turns from full out)
Tire: Q3+
Pressure: 32 hot (could drop another pound)
Compression: 8.00 in (8.25 is all the way in)
Rebound: 10 in (not sure what the max is off the top of my head)
Preload: 7 in

Rear
Tire: Q3+ 190/55
Pressure: 33 hot (could drop another pound here as well)
Compression: 2.25 in
Rebound 3.5 in (Bike has too much rebound as shown by rear tire, but I am nearly all the way in, so can't slow it down any more atm)
Preload: ~3 rings

Me:
200 lbs 6' tall

The changes made the bike WAY better and took me from a ~2:14 to a ~2:07 and i felt more comfortable on the bike doing those times.

I am thinking about going with thicker weight oil in the front and rear as well as possibly changing to a stiffer spring in both the front and rear. Ideas/Suggestions? Does anyone have any knowledge around raising the rear or benchmarks on overall height setup?

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 10:20 AM
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First of all, you should be measuring your compression and rebound setting from full closed. So, you turn the adjuster fully clockwise, and then measure turns or clicks as you turn counter clockwise. This technique is more commonly used, and I believe Dave Moss uses it in his videos. This way, no matter how much adjustment ones forks have available, you always start from the same point (fully closed). So, take your fork rebound adjuster, for example, and measure as it stands right now how many turns until fully clockwise (seated/closed) and record that as your setting : fork rebound X turns out.

Second, I donít know the stock spring rate for your bike, but I am your size and weight and use 1.0 kg/mm springs in the front of my 2012. You should definitely invest in a fork rebuild with appropriate springs and possibly improved valving. I also really have a hard time believing you are just getting the front rebound to work the way Dave does his in the videos at the setting you described above. Seems like way too much rebound damping, but since you are measuring turns in from fully out I am having a hard time knowing where you really are.

Take ALL the preload, rebound and compression damping out of your forks and try the DM bouncing technique. Adjust your rebound as necessary. Then set your compression damping and preload back where you started, and adjust them at the track the way Dave does, using the zip tie on the fork. Also, make sure you know where bottom-out is on your forks. As a Dave says, it could be above where the dust seal kisses the bottom fork casting. Youíll need to look up the factory suspension travel limits, suspend the bikes front end, and measure that out.

Third, I think your tire pressures are too low. 32 psi would be a normal cold pressure for Q3+ tires.
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Last edited by Duc995; 09-23-2019 at 10:27 AM.
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post #3 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 11:27 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duc995 View Post
First of all, you should be measuring your compression and rebound setting from full closed. So, you turn the adjuster fully clockwise, and then measure turns or clicks as you turn counter clockwise. This technique is more commonly used, and I believe Dave Moss uses it in his videos. This way, no matter how much adjustment ones forks have available, you always start from the same point (fully closed). So, take your fork rebound adjuster, for example, and measure as it stands right now how many turns until fully clockwise (seated/closed) and record that as your setting : fork rebound X turns out.

I feel like this would be a personal preference thing, but I can get those numbers tonight and update the post then.

Second, I donít know the stock spring rate for your bike, but I am your size and weight and use 1.0 kg/mm springs in the front of my 2012. You should definitely invest in a fork rebuild with appropriate springs and possibly improved valving. I also really have a hard time believing you are just getting the front rebound to work the way Dave does his in the videos at the setting you described above. Seems like way too much rebound damping, but since you are measuring turns in from fully out I am having a hard time knowing where you really are.

The front end "rebounds and slightly lowers after without excessive bouncing with my current settings well. I have not touched rebound on the front. Tire wear on the front is perfect as well.
Any shops in Louisiana/Mississippi you could recommend on rebuilding the forks?


Take ALL the preload, rebound and compression damping out of your forks and try the DM bouncing technique. Adjust your rebound as necessary. Then set your compression damping and preload back where you started, and adjust them at the track the way Dave does, using the zip tie on the fork. Also, make sure you know where bottom-out is on your forks. As a Dave says, it could be above where the dust seal kisses the bottom fork casting. Youíll need to look up the factory suspension travel limits, suspend the bikes front end, and measure that out.

I did this(DM bouncing technique) prior to a trackday a couple months ago. I just now used the zip tie to see how much of the fork I am using(2 hours of open track). I checked where bottom out is and it is a bit higher up than "true bottom".

Third, I think your tire pressures are too low. 32 psi would be a normal cold pressure for Q3+ tires.
I am changing tire pressures based on temperature of the tires after 4+ laps at full pace. Based on the DM hand touch technique where I shouldn't be able to hold my hand on the tire longer than 1.5 seconds. Currently I could leave my hand on the tire for 3-4 seconds. I started at 30/30 in the morning and slowly went down as the tires were only warm after the first session. But then again, I am not "fast" yet and will probably have to raise the pressure some as I increase the usage of the tires.

Thanks for your response!
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post #4 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 11:59 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duc995 View Post
First of all, you should be measuring your compression and rebound setting from full closed. So, you turn the adjuster fully clockwise, and then measure turns or clicks as you turn counter clockwise. This technique is more commonly used, and I believe Dave Moss uses it in his videos. This way, no matter how much adjustment ones forks have available, you always start from the same point (fully closed). So, take your fork rebound adjuster, for example, and measure as it stands right now how many turns until fully clockwise (seated/closed) and record that as your setting : fork rebound X turns out.

Second, I donít know the stock spring rate for your bike, but I am your size and weight and use 1.0 kg/mm springs in the front of my 2012. You should definitely invest in a fork rebuild with appropriate springs and possibly improved valving. I also really have a hard time believing you are just getting the front rebound to work the way Dave does his in the videos at the setting you described above. Seems like way too much rebound damping, but since you are measuring turns in from fully out I am having a hard time knowing where you really are.

Take ALL the preload, rebound and compression damping out of your forks and try the DM bouncing technique. Adjust your rebound as necessary. Then set your compression damping and preload back where you started, and adjust them at the track the way Dave does, using the zip tie on the fork. Also, make sure you know where bottom-out is on your forks. As a Dave says, it could be above where the dust seal kisses the bottom fork casting. Youíll need to look up the factory suspension travel limits, suspend the bikes front end, and measure that out.

Third, I think your tire pressures are too low. 32 psi would be a normal cold pressure for Q3+ tires.
@Duc995 What is your rear spring rate? Or are you running stock there?
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post #5 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 12:31 PM
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Stock spring on the rear? Oh no.... not at our weight. Iím using an Ohlins shock on the rear of my bike. The spring is 100 N. Which is actually on the soft side. Race techís website recommended 105 N.

A good source for spring rates is the spring rate calculator at racetech.com
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Last edited by Duc995; 09-23-2019 at 12:38 PM.
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post #6 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 12:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dhpiper View Post
I am changing tire pressures based on temperature of the tires after 4+ laps at full pace. Based on the DM hand touch technique where I shouldn't be able to hold my hand on the tire longer than 1.5 seconds. Currently I could leave my hand on the tire for 3-4 seconds. I started at 30/30 in the morning and slowly went down as the tires were only warm after the first session. But then again, I am not "fast" yet and will probably have to raise the pressure some as I increase the usage of the tires.
I donít have a lot of faith in the ďhand touchĒ technique since these are hypersport street tires are not true race rubber. The Q3+ is designed to operate at a lower temp than true race tires, which is why you donít need tire warmers for them.
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Last edited by Duc995; 09-23-2019 at 01:47 PM.
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post #7 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 12:47 PM
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Sorry - iím nowhere near your neck of the woods. Maybe someone else can recommend a suspension shop. Might be worth posting that question on WERA.com if no one here chimes in; they race in your neighborhood. I just ship my stuff to Racetech in California since I have their gold valves and valving in my forks.
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post #8 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
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@Duc995 Thanks for all the input. Greatly appreciated.
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post #9 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 01:56 PM
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Did you set the sag? Adding excessive preload on the front and not adjusting the rear will affect the geometry and there will be less weight so your front tire wont warm up.
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post #10 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 08:54 PM
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I am running 1.025 fork springs and a 575 lb shock spring if that helps
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post #11 of 35 Old 09-23-2019, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dhpiper View Post
I ride monthly trackdays at NOLA Motorsports on my 2016 ZX6R. Suspension wise it is stock. I sub'd to Dave Moss and learned the ins and outs of suspension and tire wear indicators.

This last weekend I put a zip-tie on my front fork as I have finally gotten confident enough to run some solid lap times and push the bike. I bottomed out the forks 5 sessions in a row stiffening compression and adding a turn of preload between each session. I also took some rebound out of the rear until I was all the was all the way in with the screw then backed it out 1/4 a turn, and rear tire wear is still pretty bad. I am looking for suggestions as to what route you would go on what to change given my situation.

Recap:
Stock 2016 ZX6R suspension
Front ( 2 in means 2 - 360 degree turns from full out)
Tire: Q3+
Pressure: 32 hot (could drop another pound)
Compression: 8.00 in (8.25 is all the way in)
Rebound: 10 in (not sure what the max is off the top of my head)
Preload: 7 in

Rear
Tire: Q3+ 190/55
Pressure: 33 hot (could drop another pound here as well)
Compression: 2.25 in
Rebound 3.5 in (Bike has too much rebound as shown by rear tire, but I am nearly all the way in, so can't slow it down any more atm)
Preload: ~3 rings

Me:
200 lbs 6' tall

The changes made the bike WAY better and took me from a ~2:14 to a ~2:07 and i felt more comfortable on the bike doing those times.

I am thinking about going with thicker weight oil in the front and rear as well as possibly changing to a stiffer spring in both the front and rear. Ideas/Suggestions? Does anyone have any knowledge around raising the rear or benchmarks on overall height setup?

Thanks in advance.
I have the rear raised well over an inch, and the forks are dropped a few mm. Couldn't tell you the exacts, you need to play around with it.
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post #12 of 35 Old 09-24-2019, 05:41 AM
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I dont know the track or what pace you are riding so generally i would say.......unless you are in the fast group, stock suspension is actually ok on these bikes(with the correct springs). Me and a pal have '16 plate bikes. I have resprung front end (standard valving) and a race rear shock (Maxton). Other bike is standard. When i jump on his bike i am about 2s slower on a lap that is just under 2mins.

You are about 10lbs heavier that me and maybe 20lbs heavier than him. I would say you need to respring the frond end and fresh oil...maybe even less air gap (but a suspension tuner would advise you better there). The additional expense of a 20/25/30mm insert kit is not worth it or needed unless you are at the top of the fast group or want to race.

For the rear - yes, a different shock does help. The standard one can be revalved/sprung quite cheaply though. If you are anywhere near approaching the middle of the intermediate group, then do the rear shock.
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post #13 of 35 Old 09-24-2019, 06:52 AM
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Originally Posted by jd41 View Post
Did you set the sag? Adding excessive preload on the front and not adjusting the rear will affect the geometry and there will be less weight so your front tire wont warm up.
It's also not going to get very warm running above 2:00 lap times at NOLA to begin with...
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post #14 of 35 Old 09-24-2019, 01:24 PM Thread Starter
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I am running 1.025 fork springs and a 575 lb shock spring if that helps
That does help, but what weight/height are you and what is your skill level? fast Advanced, slower advanced, faster intermediate, intermediate?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gawernator View Post
I have the rear raised well over an inch, and the forks are dropped a few mm. Couldn't tell you the exacts, you need to play around with it.
I was planning on messing with geometry some, but would like to get my forks in a better position first. Especially considering currently the back is definitely lower than the front as the rear sag was ~38mm and the front sag was ~10mm when I checked last night. The reason the front is so low is that I have compression all the way in and preload nearly all the way in to try and keep the forks from bottoming out. I did adjust the rear to 25mm by increasing rear preload which changed the front to 11mm. Thanks for the input.
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post #15 of 35 Old 09-24-2019, 01:28 PM Thread Starter
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@Otto Man

I beg to differ. I ran with 24psi cold when I was well over 2:15 laps and the front tire was smoking hot when I came in. I am not gonna say it had hot tear, but it definitely was too hot. If you touched the tire with your palm it left a lasting burn.

I do agree that overall I am still at a slow pace compared to the advanced guys, but your comment isn't necessarily constructive to the post either.
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