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Digital Subscriptions > Fast Bikes > Issue 326 > SUSPENSION*

SUSPENSION*

The mysteries of suspension are unravelled right here, right now, with the help of some rather clever people at K-Tech.

EVERYTHING YOU’VE ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT

(*But Have Always Been Too Afraid To Ask)

It can be very difficult to obtain that perfect suspension set-up. In racing, with so much adjustability, it can be a challenge to find the compromise between how the bike reacts into a corner, during a corner, and on the exit – and nearly every corner on a track would, ideally, need its own setting so finding the right compromise for all is never easy. In off-road racing and especially motocross, with ever-changing track conditions it’s even trickier.

On a stock road motorcycle, built to a specific budget yet designed for a huge range of rider weights (with the option to carry a pillion and luggage) getting it spot-on for everyone is, understandably, a near impossible task.

Open range

A bike manufacturer has a huge window when designing a standard road machine – from the physically smaller, lighter Asian market, to the often larger US owners. Will the rider be carrying luggage? What kind of road surface will they be on? A bike with too wide adjustment could, in the wrong hands, be set up to handle dangerously – give enough to suit a single Asian rider, and a couple who load their bike up excessively in the States could, theoretically, set the motorcycle to handle dangerously.

Due to the litigious times we live in, this could prove costly for manufacturers; hence an average is accommodated for. It’s this lack of real adjustability that contributes to many riders not believing they understand suspension – until you can actually feel what’s happening as you tweak it, it will always seem something of a dark art.

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Fast Bikes is home to the best sportsbike tests on the planet and is packed with new bike launches, technical insight, hardcore action, masterclasses, racing, reviews and loads more.
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