Thursday, 2 May 2013

Setup: Solo Suspension

It's no secret that dialing in your suspension affects a bike's road manners.....hell - this variable is possibly the most important when it comes to bike/rider feel and compliance....

When I first got the Shiver I touched nothing for a week or so - let the suspension loosen up a bit......let things "bed down"

Then - I began the systematic approach of getting the rear end dialed in.....unfortunately the stock Shiver front end is not adjustable...............bummer.

As I was on my own I couldn't apply the usual technique of slack measurement, then static sag, then rider weight.....then account for 10mm of travel (taking into account rebound) know how it goes....

SO! How does one, without help take an dial in their suspension?

Step 1 - Measure
I took measurements of the stock setup before touching a thing.

My shorthand is:
T  = Thread shown above locking ring for preload - measured in mm
C = Clicks open from fully closed on rebound

For any other Shiver owners out there......the stock setting - at least in my case - is as follows

T - 10mm
C - 9

Step 2 - Ride
Having changed nothing at all I set out to a well known ~12km stretch which has some twisties, sweepers and undulations......I did two runs on stock setting.....

Then I adjusted, measured and recorded.
T - 12.5 mm
C - 10

At this stage I wasn't sure what I wanted so I added preload and rebound to make the back end more "nervous" the end of the day, twitchy is fast.......if you can handle it......

This was not my setting.....

After 2 more runs both stock and adjusted settings were too stiff for my weight.....I backed off preload and rebound.......on the bike again for two more passes......

T - 2.5 mm
C - 6

THAT was more like it! Much more compliant rear end.......



  1. Good info mate.


    1. Thanks DesertGoon :D

      Hope this helps out some fellow Ape-ists


  2. Great post bud! I'm gonna give that a shot as soon as I get my bike back from the shop.

    -jeffrey lebowski

    1. Thanks mate.

      Let me know how you go - getting the rear end right can change the attitude of the bike quite dramatically.

      Good luck!


  3. Nice post, will keep this in my favorites :)

    I have actually just adjusted my stock front end. The fork seals went so I bought some 10W oil to replace the 5W. Not been able to ride her much as I'm at uni right now.
    Holidays For Heroes bike run across the island is next weekend so I'll be able to report back then (probably in the Shiver picture gallery with the pic of a stripped fork!).
    My previous racing experience with moto-x and sand racing gave me a little insight into what the handling should feel like when tipping in and during the corner, and the stock felt a little soft and spongy, so I'm expecting positive results from the thicker oil!

    1. Sounds great man - hopefully the heavier oil gives you the results you are looking for :D


  4. Hey BitSar-
    Bit of a personal question, but how much do you weigh? Also, how high-up-through the triple clamps do you have your forks? (How many rings showing?)
    I'm 62Kg, add a bit for leathers, etc... But I've kept coming back to rear spring "T" being Zero/Zilch/Naught! I can't remember last "C" setting, but 13 is ringing a bell. And next 5W-Fork Oil change, I'm going to come up one more ring (to show 2, I think, as it is stock now)
    For me, plush is good, and this is getting as good as I can get it... but the talks of Ohlins/HyperPro/Nitron/Etc are starting to get to me!
    Anyway- thanks for the great entertainment/info on this blog.

    1. Hey mate,

      I'm ~68kg - again, add weight for boots, jacket, helmet etc..

      I'm not surprised you've got no preload - I just recently backed mine off to almost no threads shown above the locking ring......I swiftly changed it back however - for me it made the bike feel loose and wallow when pitched over.

      The front has only 1 ring shown above the triple clamp - I have not adjusted this from stock.

      And yes - suspension upgrade would be very nice indeed......

      Cheers mate