Suspension Question

Hey everyone!

I have a 05 450 with about 250 miles on it, and I have a couple of questions regarding suspension.

First off, my 05 seems really soft and low on the back (The front seems fine). When I sit on my bike, it drops way down before the suspension kicks in. I am looking to move this "point" up where I can sit on my bike and have the suspension kick in without so much sag. I feel like I am riding a low rider. :D

I rode 2 other 450's (03 and 04) I noticed there rear end was a lot higher, and didn't drop down as much when I sat on it and it was somewhat stiffer. I do realize that the 05's are a little lower in general, but mine is really soft on top of that.

I was reading the manual, and it talked about Sag, and 3 different types of dampening in the back (high, low and rebound). Anyone have any idea on what I may need to adjust to get it to ride a little higher, have less initial sag, and be a little more firm on the back?

Thanks for all the great advice here! I would be lost without you guys!


Thanks for the link.

I am actually looking to try and the stock suspension set up for now (no $$$) instead of getting a new setup just yet.

Any more tips?

Do a search for "rear sag"

This will get you in the ballpark.

Put your bike on a stand so the rear wheel hangs free. Measure the distance from the rear axle to a spot on the fender. Should be roughly 24 to 25 inches.

Next, stand on the pegs and have someone balance the bike while someone else measures the distance from the rear axle to the spot on the fender.

Subtract the smaller from the bigger. You need to be close to but less than 4 inches.

This will be as good as you can get for free.

Cool, I just got done reading a bunch on Sag, and I watched that video from a thread a little while back.

I am guessint that I should probably just get a new spring instead of trying to setup the stock spring.

According to the RACETECH site, it says I need a 5.4. Reading some of the search results, looks like some of the guys about my size ended up going with a 5.6 or so. Is there a big difference between a 5.4 and a 5.6?

Also, what do I need to know (if anything) about the valves in the back? Some of you guys said you got new ones...

At 6' and 210 lbs., I put in a 5.6. It set my bike almost perfect in the assend. Depends on your weight. I've been told I should have gone with a 5.8, but IMO, the 5.6 is just right for me and not too stiff :naughty:

So how much of a job is it putting in the new spring?

And how is the shipping time for the RaceTech?

I am 6'2" and weight 225. I had a 5.7 put in the rear and it made all the difference in the world. ENZO did my suspension tuning for me but just changing the springs will make a world of difference. :naughty:

So how much of a job is it putting in the new spring?

And how is the shipping time for the RaceTech?

It is not very hard to change the spring-Maybe will take you 3 or 4 beers! U can have them ship overnight if you want-Just pull out the credit card :naughty:

I noticed the same thing with my 05 WR right after I bought it. I weigh 220 lbs, so I know some will say I need a new spring, but I'm saving that for if I get the valving done later.

I just set my sag and the shock is performing very well. I also typically run my sag setting kind of high. I set mine at between 90 & 95 mm and all is well. I also backed out 2 clicks on the fork compression and went in 1 click on rebound, the forks are very good now. I haven't changed any settings on the shock other than sag as yet and will move the clickers once I feel the shock is fully broken in.

I was jumping off of a 3 foot ledge last Saturday coming out of a 3rd gear corner and the suspension was soaking it up without bottoming. It was rather plush come to think of it. So it's close.

So, I would set the sag on the shock and ride for a while. The suspension will change over time and you will have a better idea of what if any help it needs from there.


I'm 225 and ordered my 5.6 from RaceTech Sunday and got a ship# from UPS an hour ago (Monday 8PM) and it will be here Thursday on ground. It comes from Cal. and I'm in Oregon so that helps.

I'm going to order new springs but am a little confused on what to get. I am about 195 lbs. and the Racetech site recommends 5.28 for me so even if I round up I would be on 5.4 springs. Racetech recommends 5.4 all the way up to ~220 lbs but alot of the 200+ lbs. people on this site are getting 5.6 or even 5.8. So is the Racetech site a bit conservative on their spring recommendations or is everyone just gettting slightly stiffer springs than they should? I like my shocks a little on the stiff side but don't want to feel like I'm riding an MX bike. What to do, should I go with 5.4 or 5.6?


There was a discussion about the different philosophies on suspending a bike.

Race-Tech likes to run a softer spring and use the dampening in the fork and shock to control the movement of the wheels.

Other shops approach it from the other direction like Factory Connection, I think.

They tend to run a stiffer spring and don't rely on the dampening characteristics of the fork and shock to control the wheel.

IMO, the higher the speeds the more you would lean toward the stiffer spring option. If you are going to run woods and/or hare scrambles you may lean more toward the soft spring option.

I'm sure opinions will vary.

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