Contractive suspension-Shortening the beast

Hey guys- I appreciated your advice to my last post on jumping.

Has anyone shortened their suspension. I'm 5'8" tall (no jokes please). As all of you know the WR 400 is a tall mother. I read in a new off road publication (the title eludes me)that you can actually shorten the travel, get rid of the sag and have 8 good inches of travel with the bike being about three inches lower. They called it contractive suspension. Two sets of springs in the front forks and a shorter spring in the rear. The book said that the modified bike would give up nothing on the jumps. What are your thoughts on this?



I read the archives post about Scottsperformance. (that was from 1999) before the publication I read regarding contractive suspension.


Clark Mason had his suspension shortened by Scotts, and was quite pleased.

Any major suspension repair shop SHOULD be able to do it.

Thanks FyingSolo

If you're out there Clark I'd love your feedback.

MA, I am also 5'8", had my suspension lowered one inch by MX-Tech, best mod for the money, unbelievable difference. There are several good shops that will do it, Scotts, Trak Control, MX-Tech to name a few. Also had it revalved at the time, words can't describe how happy I am with this mod.....TW

Michael, Why would I joke?? Im 5'8 too :)

I've adjusted my rear shock to work for me by softening the shock preload without sacrificing my race sag, Yes the bike IS tall, fortuanly for me I dont ride alot of tight stuff but if you must lower the scoot I would REALLY recommend you give Tom a call at: They did an OUTSTANDING job on my friends XR440 and they are passionate about suspension....

Thanks Dan and TW, I really appreciate your good advice and for not giving me a hard time for being short. My budy is 5'10" but he weighs 215 lbs. I weigh about 160 with gear on a good day. He has the 01 426 and I can suck him up. I have played with my adjustments to suspension. Right now it is set stiff so that I can fly through the air with the greatest of ease and not break (me or the bike). I will ride as is for awhile. I was thinking about the seat mod everyone in here is talking about. If that would give me an inck...I could live with that. Thanks again...


PS- I just got back from riding at Prarie City. It was a lot of fun on the Hangtown track. The jumpimg advice from my last post paid off.

Michael, One last note, I do have an SDG seat on my 01 and I think that because of the shape of the seat you get an extra inch out of it. (we all know that an extra inch is a plus) :) later

Thanks for that last 1" of advice Dan. Very much appreciated.


You know what really sucks is that when I first bought my WR I could just barely put my toes on the ground and had to start it by putting down the kickstand.

It finally settled after a year and a half of beating it down with my 210lb massiveness, and I could even kick it over without the stand. :D

This weekend I ripped it apart for a complete service...while I was at it I removed the sub-frame and set my shock compression so that my sag was correct. my blue monster is back to it's original height and I can just barely touch the ground again, not to mention I'm back on the kickstand again. :)

Decisions...Decisions...Man I don't want to take it apart again....

Bonzai.. :D

Thanks for the story Yamakazi. I think it is going to take me longer than two years to beat down my suspension, but thanks for the tip.


I took a fillet knife to my seat and cut about an 1 1/2" off. It made all the difference in the world.


Thanks Mike, years ago I used to work in an upolstry shop. They had a special tool (saw) to cut foam. Maybe I should check with a local shop to see if they can trim down my orignal seat foam.


MA, even if you cut seat foam I would still do the YZ tank and seat conversion(huge difference). I beleive most on this board would agree.....TW

[This message has been edited by TW (edited 07-31-2001).]

Thanks TW, If I went into a dealership and sat on a YZ would that give me a realistic expectation of new set height if I went for your suggested mod? I'm still thinking of going for the lowering of suspension you suggested ealier in this thread. Thanks,


Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now