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DRZ400s Suspension for street?

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I have a drz400s with SM wheels(17's).  The suspension feels like a noodle at high speeds 60+mph.  Im looking into doing a fork/triple swap but it's PRICEY around 1,000 dollars for forks and triple in good condition.  I feel like the forks I have are great-- but just set up for dirt riding.  Are the s forks longer than the SM forks?  How can I get the suspension feeling like an SM or better / stiffer without doing the whole fork / triple swap.  How do I make adjustments / change springs and get my conventional Showas set-up for street riding?  Thanks!

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i think actually softening the front so it 'sags' more and dialing up the damping works just fine for everyday riding, i got mine set up so the whole bike sags more or less a couple of inches .. if your going to the track you probably need to invest in something better .. if you didnt install bar risers that can change the whole feel to ..

Edited by cowpie

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Brian at SoCal Supermoto had a vid for DRZ SM suspension settings, still looking.  He runs stock DRZs' at his school.

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Racetech springs front and rear will cure that! Did mine and its ten times better.

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SM fork springs are about 1.5" shorter than S springs.The rear shock is shorter too.You should have the bike resprung and revalved for your weight,riding style and conditions,it's well worth the expense and so are the bigger brakes.

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I was running .48 springs on my bike when i was doing a lot of street.

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I made some adjustments on the front and back comp/rebound clickers (2008 DR-Z400s) for the first time yesterday.  I just set it up with the SM settings in the manual because I wasn't sure where to start.  Just that alone has made a noticeable difference even though the SM suspension is different.  I was wondering if anyone else here has some recommendations on how to get the clicker settings for the DR-Z400s set up for street riding.  I understand it's subjective to each rider and riding style just want to know if anyone can give me some direction or general advice...I am 185 - 190 

 

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Suspension is a black art and very subjective. What I like maybe terrible for you. Your weight plays a key role as the correct springs are essential for the suspension to operate in the sweet part of the stroke. BTW, I way 86kg for reference.

I have an 400E here in Aus that I go back and forth between 17" supermoto and 21/18" dirt. The E and S have some differences to the SM that you need to be aware of. The forks are longer on the E and S compared to the SM. The SM also has a different swing arm and different length shock.

What I am getting at is the SM has a different geometry. When you put 17" rims on the S and E, the bike pitches forward which will give you a sharper turn in but less stable.

Having said all that, I set the rear sag to around 80mm, wound up the compression front and rear so it was still compliant with the road but not a harsh ride. The Rebound needs to be balanced front and rear to the bike compresses and rebounds at the same rate. I can live with this compromise as I like to change back to the dirt.

To get the S to handle like a reasonable street bike on 17" wheels, you would need to invest in the correct springs, correct geometry set up and that's to start with.

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1 hour ago, Ilia . said:

Suspension is a black art and very subjective. What I like maybe terrible for you. Your weight plays a key role as the correct springs are essential for the suspension to operate in the sweet part of the stroke. BTW, I way 86kg for reference.

I have an 400E here in Aus that I go back and forth between 17" supermoto and 21/18" dirt. The E and S have some differences to the SM that you need to be aware of. The forks are longer on the E and S compared to the SM. The SM also has a different swing arm and different length shock.

What I am getting at is the SM has a different geometry. When you put 17" rims on the S and E, the bike pitches forward which will give you a sharper turn in but less stable.

Having said all that, I set the rear sag to around 80mm, wound up the compression front and rear so it was still compliant with the road but not a harsh ride. The Rebound needs to be balanced front and rear to the bike compresses and rebounds at the same rate. I can live with this compromise as I like to change back to the dirt.

To get the S to handle like a reasonable street bike on 17" wheels, you would need to invest in the correct springs, correct geometry set up and that's to start with.

Thanks for taking the time to respond.  I am aware of the differences between the E, S and SM.  I have been trying to figure out how to get the rake and trail / geometry of SM on my S without getting triple/ forks / swingarm and rear shock from an SM. I have the dimensions in my Clymer manual but since I have zero knowledge regarding suspension I don't know where to start. 

Here's my plan

1.  I am going to start by changing the oil in my forks. 

2.  Set my sag 

3.  Would raising my forks in my triple clamp a bit (2mm) to make the 49mm conventional Showas more like the 47mm USDs on SM? 

4.  Can I swap the SM rear shock for my S rear shock without changing the swing arm?

These are just a couple of ideas I've had and I'm sure I'm not the first one to ask these questions but don't see any matching threads when I search ththe forum.  

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3 minutes ago, Sasha Rudolfski said:

Thanks for taking the time to respond.  I am aware of the differences between the E, S and SM.  I have been trying to figure out how to get the rake and trail / geometry of SM on my S without getting triple/ forks / swingarm and rear shock from an SM. I have the dimensions in my Clymer manual but since I have zero knowledge regarding suspension I don't know where to start. 

Here's my plan

1.  I am going to start by changing the oil in my forks. 

2.  Set my sag 

3.  Would raising my forks in my triple clamp a bit (2mm) to make the 49mm conventional Showas more like the 47mm USDs on SM? 

4.  Can I swap the SM rear shock for my S rear shock without changing the swing arm?

These are just a couple of ideas I've had and I'm sure I'm not the first one to ask these questions but don't see any matching threads when I search ththe forum.  

You may want to take some front and rear frame measurement from a stock SM to give you a base geometry setting measurement.. 

From memory, I think you could keep the swing arm but would need a SM shock or a S modified shock.

Based on this, you may get away with raising the forks but the SM forks are a much better for the street.

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