Best rear suspension setup for rough, loose climbs ?

I have a lightened 2012 WR450 with stock suspension.

Lately I've been on rides that involve long hill climbs totally littered with loose square edge rock the size of softballs. Loose shale of sorts. Kind of like a riverbed of square rock running up a hill.

I'm finding these climbs very challenging. In 1st gear I don't have enough momentum. In 2nd gear at reasonable RPMs everything will go fine until the rear wheel suddenly kicks up or kicks out really bad. It almost always ends the climb. I'm usually standing when this happens. There is no way I can maintain control in 3rd.

In general, the rear suspension is very harsh during these climbs. I can hear the chain slapping the swing arm constantly. The ride is jarring from the back tire.

My bike is probably under sprung on both ends.

What do I do to make it better ?

Edited by MidlifeCrisisGuy

Soft soft soft. Wind out low speed compression a few clicks at a time until it feels nice. You will lose compliance in the whoops but its a balancing act.

And yes, make sure you have the correct springs. If you are too heavy for the springs, soft is probably the wrong direction. It may be riding low and hitting the bumper.

Sounds like it may also be packing. What are your settings currently, including sag?

Sounds like it may also be packing. What are your settings currently, including sag?

I'm about 220 pounds with street clothes. According to the RT calculator, I need a 5.91 Kg/mm spring. However, I lightened the bike by 20+ pounds and it has a 5.51 spring stock. So I don't think the spring is too far out.

Bike sag is 30mm. Bike + rider sag is right around 100mm.

Clickers are all in their stock settings. Other than these climbs, the rear suspension feels pretty good. Except it bucks a bit going over logs.

I never thought of packing on a climb like that, but it kind of makes sense. I'd decrease the rebound damping to allow a faster swingarm return to prevent it ?

Edited by MidlifeCrisisGuy

First I would try coming out on ls comp. If its stock spring and your close on weight and sag stock rebound should be close. Try coming out 3 clicks at a time. You will feel it getting plusher but you dont want to go too far.

My bet is too soft on compression damping.  Spring sounds right.  Rear probably feels OK going down the same sections right?  The chain slapping indicates excessive movement too.

 

Increase HSC 1/8th turn at a time.  Running some super slow rebound on those KYB's is also reasonable with the huge bleed they have.  4-6 clicks out from closed isn't unusual.  Helps the rear from using a ton of travel through dips and things like that too by adding some much needed LSC.

Install a 140/80x18 IRC M5B lower the pressure down to about 3-4 lbs. put it in second gear and run it over and over till you own it.

Install a 140/80x18 IRC M5B lower the pressure down to about 3-4 lbs. put it in second gear and run it over and over till you own it.

WOW, no pinch flats?

WOW, no pinch flats?

 

 

Nope extra heavy duty tube, throw away the air guage and make it like a basket ball prior to aring up.

Nope extra heavy duty tube, throw away the air guage and make it like a basket ball prior to aring up.

What do you mean, make it like a basketball ?

The more I think about this the more I think there 2 problems.

1) I need a stiffer shock spring, especially when going up hill, so that the shock is riding in the upper part of its stroke where its softer.

2) I need to back off on the high speed compression on the shock a bit so that its softer on the jarring hits.

I might also need a bit more high speed rebound damping.

I think my forks need a bit of work too, starting with heavier springs.

Edited by MidlifeCrisisGuy

The more I think about this the more I think there 2 problems.

1) I need a stiffer shock spring, especially when going up hill, so that the shock is riding in the upper part of its stroke where its softer.

2) I need to back off on the high speed compression on the shock a bit so that its softer on the jarring hits.

I might also need a bit more high speed rebound damping.

I think my forks need a bit of work too, starting with heavier springs.

If your springs are not correct, nothing else matters.

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