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03 RM 250 Suspension Questions?

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Hi guys,

My 03 rm seems kinda beat. I originally bought it as a budget bike to have fun on and have as an extra. But because its so much fun to ride I end up riding it a lot more than my 08 yz450. My the bike seems pretty good except in the suspension department. 

Lets start with the forks. Originally I rebuilt the forks with some new seals so they could at least hold oil. I mean they are ok I can ride the bike and go fast but its just not smooth like my 450. I think they are way too soft. When I read everybody says just buy the newer showas. My question is Is that really necessary?   Would the forks be within say 85-90% as good if I just threw some new springs that have my correct spring rate and maybe did the race tech gold valve kit? The problem I see is I buy some showas for like 250 bucks and then I have to rebuild them and then they may not even be sprung for me. It could cost a lot of extra money.

Next onto the the shock. The shock seems pretty soft. Would just a rebuild replacing the seal and new oil with a recharge be pretty much what I need to make it pretty good.

I'm not trying to go out and beat Ryan Dungy but I would like it to be within 80-90% as good as my 450. Or is that just not going to happen? 03 and 08 are not that many years off.

Thanks guys

 

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Hi guys,
My 03 rm seems kinda beat. I originally bought it as a budget bike to have fun on and have as an extra. But because its so much fun to ride I end up riding it a lot more than my 08 yz450. My the bike seems pretty good except in the suspension department. 
Lets start with the forks. Originally I rebuilt the forks with some new seals so they could at least hold oil. I mean they are ok I can ride the bike and go fast but its just not smooth like my 450. I think they are way too soft. When I read everybody says just buy the newer showas. My question is Is that really necessary?   Would the forks be within say 85-90% as good if I just threw some new springs that have my correct spring rate and maybe did the race tech gold valve kit? The problem I see is I buy some showas for like 250 bucks and then I have to rebuild them and then they may not even be sprung for me. It could cost a lot of extra money.
Next onto the the shock. The shock seems pretty soft. Would just a rebuild replacing the seal and new oil with a recharge be pretty much what I need to make it pretty good.
I'm not trying to go out and beat Ryan Dungy but I would like it to be within 80-90% as good as my 450. Or is that just not going to happen? 03 and 08 are not that many years off.
Thanks guys
 


I am the same bike and same suspension setup. I spent a lot of time on the phone with racetech and I ended up respringing the rear and rebuilt. I read a lot about the kyb vs the showas. Some people love and hate both. I called factory connection and ran my weight and thoughts by with them. Here we came up with. I put 7.5wt oil at there recommended oil level with stock springs. Bike rides great. Once I gst faster or I rebuild them again, I will most likely get the proper springs for my weight and go back to factory weight oil.

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Wcm250,

Thanks for the response, I would like to keep my forks. I think I could save a couple hundred by doing so. I am not very picky either. Do you mind me asking the what the factory oil level is. I cannot find an 03 manual. I have an 04 manual that I bought off ebay that the guy said was an 03.

Did the new spring in the rear really help a lot? I feel like I should just go with a rebuild with new oil first.

The bike is really good but the suspension is not the best. If I stay off my 450 it does not seem too bad but if I ride my 450 much I can really tell.

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I have an 03 RM250, that was re valved by Marshal Suspension.  Use the fork oil level and fill to 95mm from the top tube (with the top tube pushed down).  Fill and pump your rod to bleed the air out before you set the final oil level.  My forks use ATF and that will get you in the ball park of 7.5 oil weight (depending on the brand of ATF).  My clicker adjustments wont work for your stock suspension, but set the fork clickers at 12 comp, 10 rebound and start from there.

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Thanks for that. I see I need the fork level tool from motion pro.

I think I should start out with new springs for my weight. Mine are soft. Stock is .43 and my weight says I should be at .45

 

Edited by lcgordon711

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Thanks for that. I see I need the fork level tool from motion pro.
I think I should start out with new springs for my weight. Mine are soft. Stock is .43 and my weight says I should be at .45
 


Honestly try the 7.5wt oil, its a hea over oil making the suspension is stiffer. When I get hone I can try and find the specs

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I may have went with 7.5 when I rebuild them I'm not sure I would have to look I think I may have an old bottle on the shelf. I know I have some brand new 10wt so maybe give that a shot.

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You don't want t go to heavy though. Makes you have a harsh mid stroke

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I'm not really sure what I have in them. I probably need an expert to set me up haha. I wish I knew more about suspension set up. I cant even say why my forks are bad I just know they don't feel good like my other bike. 

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Start from the beginning with factory settings and set fork height and sag. It will be way worth it for you to learn then to take it to a shop.

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Yeah thanks I will do that. Should I rebuild my shock before setting sag. It seems pretty soft and squatty right now. I'm sure it still has stock oil and seals I bet. I have never touched it in the last 2 years I have  had It I know.

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Yeah thanks I will do that. Should I rebuild my shock before setting sag. It seems pretty soft and squatty right now. I'm sure it still has stock oil and seals I bet. I have never touched it in the last 2 years I have  had It I know.

Set your sag and check bike sag vs rider sag and that will answer your question on the spring. The rebuild is up to you. I would but only after seeing if you need the spring.

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You have some good suggestions here, but I'll add mine since I have the same bike and forks.

 

First go for the stiffer springs if it is too soft. I went to the .45's and it was a huge improvement. I am wanting to try .46 honestly. Try raising the fork oil height. That will take some experimenting, but I am finding that running more fork oil plus stiffer springs with a fairly soft compression clicker setting (10 to 11 clicks out for me) makes the forks decent for motocross.

 

I find once you start hardening the compression clickers with stock valving the forks get very harsh very fast.

 

I like the rebound at 10 clicks out currently. Any quicker and the front will spring up on me frequently depending on the jump.

 

Also if you get stiffer fork springs you will probably want to get a stiffer shock spring as well. Having balanced suspension action is really important. Right now I have the .45's in the forks and 5.4 in the shock and the bike feels really predictable most of the time. Still working on finding the perfect setup myself.

 

 

 

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