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firffighter

Motorcycle Suspension Tuners: Stillwell or LT?

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I really hesitate to bring this up on here because I have a strong feeling as to where it will go. So, against my better judgement, here it goes. 

Going to get my suspension tuned. Deciding between Stillwell or LT. 

I'm very picky and I research a ton before doing anything. 

I would have preferred to have Kreft do my tuning as Adam is young, has the latest technology, is local, and he understands tuning for exactly the riding I do. He did my last KTM a couple of years ago and it was spot on. But, unfortunately, Kreft is no longer doing Beta, only concentrating on WP. 

So, preference is to stay local with LT. Here's my hesitation. Les has vast experience which is exactly what I prefer. But, he's an older guy and I'm concerned he is not familiar with setting up a suspension for faster terrain and riding. I do not want a suspension tuned for slow technical terrain, and I think LT predominantly gets that type of customer. 

Stillwell, on the other hand, is Arizona, so not local, but is familiar with faster riding set ups and tuning for a bit more aggressive terrain and riding. 

So, without the reactionary comments, is there anyone here with some objective insights that would be helpful. 

It'd be great to hear from guys riding similar terrain, i.e Colorado, Idaho, Utah, Sierra Nevada's. Fast flowing Mt woods with lots of embedded rock. 3rd gear type riding, lots of cornering and on/off the gas. 

I'm NOT interested in impressions from slow technical terrain never getting out of 1st-2nd gear as that's not the riding I do very often. 

I'm leaning towards Stillwell, but if anyone has experience with LT that rides similar to what I've described, that's be very helpful. 

 

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Steve at after hour cycles is another one to consider.  I believe he goes by motoxgiant on here.  Very happy with the work he did on my OC forks.  A couple of my buddies have gone with LTR and are happy.. We are in WA so are local to him.  We ride mainly tight single track but get into that PNW flow stuff i see often in your vids.  I actually think my OC setup handles that stuff great.  Very confident on it.  

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30 minutes ago, firffighter said:

I really hesitate to bring this up on here because I have a strong feeling as to where it will go. So, against my better judgement, here it goes. 

 

 

What Kind of Motor oil are you using? 😊 

I have spoken with Les and it would be hard to believe that he could not make adjustments for any riding style..... I would think you couldn't go wrong with either.

I am hoping to do the same thing this winter. For my benefit, could you tell me why you are not including enduro spec cartridges? He rides beta and similar terrain. 

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31 minutes ago, firffighter said:

I really hesitate to bring this up on here because I have a strong feeling as to where it will go. So, against my better judgement, here it goes. 

Going to get my suspension tuned. Deciding between Stillwell or LT. 

I'm very picky and I research a ton before doing anything. 

I would have preferred to have Kreft do my tuning as Adam is young, has the latest technology, is local, and he understands tuning for exactly the riding I do. He did my last KTM a couple of years ago and it was spot on. But, unfortunately, Kreft is no longer doing Beta, only concentrating on WP. 

So, preference is to stay local with LT. Here's my hesitation. Les has vast experience which is exactly what I prefer. But, he's an older guy and I'm concerned he is not familiar with setting up a suspension for faster terrain and riding. I do not want a suspension tuned for slow technical terrain, and I think LT predominantly gets that type of customer. 

Stillwell, on the other hand, is Arizona, so not local, but is familiar with faster riding set ups and tuning for a bit more aggressive terrain and riding. 

So, without the reactionary comments, is there anyone here with some objective insights that would be helpful. 

It'd be great to hear from guys riding similar terrain, i.e Colorado, Idaho, Utah, Sierra Nevada's. Fast flowing Mt woods with lots of embedded rock. 3rd gear type riding, lots of cornering and on/off the gas. 

I'm NOT interested in impressions from slow technical terrain never getting out of 1st-2nd gear as that's not the riding I do very often. 

I'm leaning towards Stillwell, but if anyone has experience with LT that rides similar to what I've described, that's be very helpful. 

 

Both are great. Stillwell did factory Beta racers and is well versed in fast and slow for a variety of riders for a very long time . LT I figure will be fine aswell. It’s just what you pick. I’d add in current factory suspension services from Beta .  For sure Beta will know what is better with newest model sachs. 

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I've had less do 5 different bikes for me over the last few years. I'm a mid pac  senior A rider so he does know how to work on suspension for faster guys. There are quite a few A and AA level guys using him.

The last time I was at his shop he was redoing some forks that were tuned by a big name suspension guy. The A level rider thought they were horrible and was tierd of sending them back.  He asked me not to name the tuner so I won't. Buy me bringing this up should be a good hint though.

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Another option might be Dave Sheets at TBT in Lacey Wa. I know he does a lot of work for the local fast guys but I'm not sure if he does Beta.

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9 minutes ago, GreenMT_Rider said:

I've had less do 5 different bikes for me over the last few years. I'm a mid pac  senior A rider so he does know how to work on suspension for faster guys. There are quite a few A and AA level guys using him.

The last time I was at his shop he was redoing some forks that were tuned by a big name suspension guy. The A level rider thought they were horrible and was tierd of sending them back.  He asked me not to name the tuner so I won't. Buy me bringing this up should be a good hint though.

Awesome! Just the information I was looking for! I appreciate that. Les has as solid a reputation as you can have in the industry and that says a lot! 

I'm not mid pack A, so I guess I'll be just fine 😉

 

Edited by firffighter

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1 minute ago, GreenMT_Rider said:

Another option might be Dave Sheets at TBT in Lacey Wa. I know he does a lot of work for the local fast guys but I'm not sure if he does Beta.

Oh, I forgot about TBT. I was just thinking of tuners that have lots of experience with Sachs and LT and Stillwell were the first to come to mind. 

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25 minutes ago, newk75 said:

What Kind of Motor oil are you using? 😊 

I have spoken with Les and it would be hard to believe that he could not make adjustments for any riding style..... I would think you couldn't go wrong with either.

I am hoping to do the same thing this winter. For my benefit, could you tell me why you are not including enduro spec cartridges? He rides beta and similar terrain. 

Lol! I use WD40 as chain lubr too😁

I actually had not heard of Enduro Specialist, but just looked them up. Another solid consideration. Thanks! 

 

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Just now, firffighter said:

I actually had not heard of Enduro Specialist, but just looked them up. Another solid consideration. Thanks! 

 

I won't try to pretend to know as much as the unswervingly confident users of TT, however I have heard enough good things about them to hold of on a valve and tune. Primarily what interests me is the speed sensitive mid-valve. I love fast but would prefer to not sacrifice too much of the lower speed technical performance. This cartridge is supposed to be "the best" of both worlds and the technology has had rave reviews in some other brands. 

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7 minutes ago, newk75 said:

Primarily what interests me is the speed sensitive mid-valve. I love fast but would prefer to not sacrifice too much of the lower speed technical performance.

This!  When riding primarily 3rd gear and pressing the speed sensitive mid-valve would be a welcome addition. But, as you say, I don't want to sacrifice too much plushness when faced with a slow rock garden, creek crossing, log hop, etc. 

The area of focus though for me is the mid valve, especially entering and exiting with speed and running through rock sections with pace. 

I'll do some more research on Enduro Spec. and appreciate the help. 

Edited by firffighter
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I'd love to hear your feedback from your research, There are few guys  on this forum who seem credible. U is one 👍

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Les built my OC forks for a mix of slow/fast stuff, with a stronger focus on slow (In the deer trails or 30-40mph fire roads with a little tweak of the clickers initially, my Sachs OC forks tuned by Les have been killer.

 

My Beta is a 2014 model so the Sachs forks back then Really needed some love! He dealt with the mid-stroke issues the Sachs gave me from the factory and so much more compliance from the bottom to the top. Of course he worked wonders on the shock, IMHO Do Both Ends at the same time you’ll be many many smiles ahead of the game.....

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As far as American tuners go I've achieved satisfactory results with both WER and Stillwell. I once purchased a SXS pds shock that was done by WER.Upon examining the internals it was clear that the methods applied and attention to detail were both innovative and carefully executed and very good shock performance was achieved as a result.

Edited by widebear
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LT Racing is popular and eager to take on work. My criticism is that the reality of it being done on time is fairly low. I use a guy in Tacoma who says one week but he's done in 3 days. Yes, he has less volume than LTR but I like early vs. late. :excuseme:

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All should be good.. or better than stock which is just a middle of the road generic setting soft for a bunch of riders. Every suspension is going to be better when plugging in riders weight and factoring in  terrain and speed and riding style. I might pick LT one day and Beta factory suspension another or Stillwell . Ive been just going to my dealer and he’s been my suspension guy for many years. He’s bigger and stronger and faster than me and he’s an A rider that has won a bunch of races. Im so lucky. He rides what I ride. I usually ride his Beta and when I get off I say I just want my bike to have the same suspension as this. We ride together sometimes so he already has an idea what would work for me. It’s what would work for him. Maybe I’m easy to figure for him. It’s been very few times that I’ve preferred different setup. This last time I was going to have my spring rates at my weight. I rode his bike and changed my mind. It’s better at 20 or 30 lbs stiffer according to the spring rate chart in my case. 

Still the first thing of all things is take off that shit tires that come stock on Betas. Put on great middle of the road tires and the bike will feel amazing compared to stock tires on. 

Edited by hawaiidirtrider
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47 minutes ago, shrubitup said:

LT Racing is popular and eager to take on work. My criticism is that the reality of it being done on time is fairly low. I use a guy in Tacoma who says one week but he's done in 3 days. Yes, he has less volume than LTR but I like early vs. late. :excuseme:

My dealer is like that too. It’s in and out. He doesn’t like bikes in his shop. If stuff isn’t done it’s because a part didn’t come or some other holdup that has nothing to do with him.

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9 hours ago, NW_drZ said:

Steve at after hour cycles is another one to consider.  I believe he goes by motoxgiant on here.  Very happy with the work he did on my OC forks.  A couple of my buddies have gone with LTR and are happy.. We are in WA so are local to him.  We ride mainly tight single track but get into that PNW flow stuff i see often in your vids.  I actually think my OC setup handles that stuff great.  Very confident on it.  

Beta/RaceTech 'factory' > not impressed. Undersprung, over valved.

After Hours Cycles  > did mine after the above, much better. Cut the deflection in half. Still  undersprung by my sag numbers (using their reco springs)

N2Dirt > yet again we tried, and now comparable to a reasonably well set up KYB, but not as plush. Fan-TAS-tic control.  Never had the feeling it needed to 'go back' for refinement. Sag is perfect (new springs)

MX Tech > have some new tricks that DON'T involve using the RaceTech valve parts like everyone else. They also have an insert system. Anxious to try.

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