Suspension question

Hi all, after reading about some incredible improvements guys are getting with a pro suspension job I've got one question my searches don't seem to answer:

What is the big advantage of getting your suspension revalved (vs just adjusting your clickers) If You Aren't Very Heavy? For example my fat arse comes in around 165lbs w/o gear... not too far from what the factory had in mind when they designed the bike in the first place. And most of the info from guys on here seems to come from dudes that outweigh me by 40lbs+

So please, share your infinate wisdom with a confused fool like myself :thumbsup:

I weigh in the same as you without gear and have an 08wr450f. In stock trim the bike was great for slow, tight single track and even riding in Moab was ok. At higher speeds. in the sand, and for some light moto work the stock suspension would blow right through the stroke and I found myself floundering quite a bit. It made the bike feel very heavy and hard to handle. I have since done a revalve using smart suspension stuff from Dave J. The bike is now simply amazing and feels almost like a motocrosser with a few extra pounds. It will hold itself up in the woops no problem, and I no longer have issues with bottoming in the woops or on hard landings. I have no problems using the wr for lite moto work even with all the added weight of the battery, starter, etc.

Changing the stock exhaust to a yz model and revalving the suspension are, in my opinion, the two best mods for the wr.

Exactly what Kawi380 said.

The stock suspension is not set up for performance, it's pretty much set up for the 'showroom tester'. And when I say 'performance', I don't mean racing, I mean control, at whatever speed. As Kawi said, the bike is so soft that when you hit sand, or more than one or two real bumps in succession, the suspensions weak points become immediately apparent. Ajusting the clickers will make a change, but not an improvement.

The fork clicker settings are also inter-related. When you adjust one, you are affecting the other. With the stock damping valve and stacks, the adjustments don't give you near enough range to be able to adjust rebound correctly, without having the compression compromised.

Not to mention the oils! They are usually just good enough to prevent rust, and hold the bike upright. They really should be changed when you get the bike, as they last about 10 hours before breaking down.


Yeah, re-valve them.

Very much worth the cost/effort.


Exactly what everyone else said. With the stock suspension, I was unable to cross big logs or hit the whoops with speed because the front would dive so much.

I used a local Race Tech shop (RaceWorks) for my mods and love the results with 10wt oil set to 95mm below top of fork.


I waited for cheap RaceTech Gold Valves (fork and shock sets) to come up on eBay then grabbed them.

I fitted them myself. The only external work I had done was to get the shock/reservoir charged with nitrogen.

You'd be surprised at just how easy it is to pull a shock absorber apart, change the valving, then re-assemble it.

I'll never pay anyone to do a rebuild for me again.

It has transformed the bike. Its more stable everywhere!


Im about same as you. My 07 wr450 susp No way to ride it down here.Major mods now I can ride it day after day.Stock it was a 6 hour bike,after that it made you sick.

Thanks for the great info guys.

I guess with all this it leads to the obvious followup question: Do I find parts and work through doing it myself or do I have the shop about a mile from my house do it for $450?

Is it terribly compicated or is it mostly just expensive parts?

Thanks again guys :excuseme:

If you go the Smart Suspension route the parts really aren't very expensive and come with good instructions and support. If you can rebuild a motor you can do your own suspension. Couple of homemade tools is all you need other than seal drivers, something you want to own anyways.

I weigh 185-190lbs and my smart performance suspension has made a huge difference to the bike. Doesn't wallow or drag the cases like it used to, corners and handles better, and can hammer through woops and come up short on jumps without the bone rattling bottoming. Still plush enough for the small stuff.

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