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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The front shocks that Honda installed on this bike are good shocks, however they do have room for improvement. There are several issues that need to be addressed.

1. Spring rate – With the single rate spring that came on it stock, you do not have as much sag adjustment as what some are wanting. I have tested several setups and have found that the least expensive solution is to have a progressive spring made to fit the stock shock that lets you lower the front of your bike while still maintaining good bottoming resistance.

2. Compressed length – The compressed length of these shocks is too long to run a good sag setup. If you run a good sag setup, the shocks will bottom very easily while the frame is still several inches off the ground. The least expensive solution that I have found is to make a new shock bottom, disable the rebound adjustment, and revalve the rebound dampening.[/b]

Ok everythings sounds great except the part where he disables the rebound adjustment. I really like the adjustabililty!! does anyone have this setup, that could comment??
 

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i'm also interested in this set up if anyone has spent the money for this yet... or has anyone went with a ual rate or een a triple rate spring on these shocks?
 

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hey joe how u doin

the adjustibility is great but is it really needed? (i'll probally hear it for that one)
well my point is that after years of tunning suspension on these things maybe he has figured out a sweet spot that is good for most people. i know he mad my rear end work well so if i get the money i'm going to give him my front and say have at it! it hard to say i don't know maybe it's better for you to have it, me personally i haven't even touched mine yet but i think i need to. let us know if you decide to do it.
 

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Ive read in some posts that say you need like 3 inches of sag in the rear or some crap. I checked mine bone stock and I had that. The rear shock on my bike is pretty much perfect for my weight (165lbs) but the fronts are a lil stiff. I love the adjustment in both sets of shocks which was one of the main reasons i got the 450 and not a 400ex and BOY am I glad I did... I rode my buddies 400ex at the mx track that he got 3 weeks before i got my 450 (both brand new) and compared to mine, it was like riding one of those old ATC's with no suspension (im sure you remember those) it was just clunky bumpy the front shocks on that thing are garbage. He took mine around the track once and was like holy crap dude this thing rides amazing!!! That was after I had dialed in my shocks :) when i first got it, the rear squirreled around horribly and the fronts were so stiff I couldn't corner too well at high speed. I backed the preload down on the fronts so that there are only 2 or 3 threads left above the top ring and I played with the compression and rebound on both ends. Compared to the already good ride I thought this thing had, wow! Total night and day. I still need to play with the settings a little because I would like a little more squat on the fronts when I corner but aside from that... if aftermarket shocks are better than these things, I'd probably die and go to heaven cause I like the stock setup just fine but ive been toying with the GT revalve... just dont like the whole no more rebound adjustment part :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
hey joe how u doin

the adjustibility is great but is it really needed? (i'll probally hear it for that one)
well my point is that after years of tunning suspension on these things maybe he has figured out a sweet spot that is good for most people. i know he mad my rear end work well so if i get the money i'm going to give him my front and say have at it! it hard to say i don't know maybe it's better for you to have it, me personally i haven't even touched mine yet but i think i need to. let us know if you decide to do it.[/b]
Well here is the thing, I'm just a recreational rider, and i change where i ride often, from sand whopped condtions to, woods/rocky condition, to recently the MX track. Having all the adjustments available there have really made this bike a dream to me. His Rear setup is hands down great, and I've had it for quite a while now, and have told many people to go with it, who have all been very satisified with the results. I know he is the MAN, and I don't doubt any of his ability, but i think if I lose that adjustment, which I adjust quite often, I will not have that all around good ride that I had before, for instance in the sand, because of the whoops i like a slower rebound, where as in the woods, i like a quicker rebound. If I were to run just 1 or the other, than I would let him do it, but since I'm always changing where I ride, i'm quite torn. I know most people want to lower the front end down a few inches, especially for racing and MX, but for me its not as important as having the adjustability up there. I might just ask him if he can just revalve the shocks for my weight and see how they are. From what I understand, the shocks are valved for a 300lb rider, so maybe i might get a better ride from having him revalve it for my weight instead. The thing is, my rear works sooo good, that it really has me thinking to forget the rebound adjustability.....i'm going to wait to see someone else do it first, then maybe I'll do it.
 

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i understand your thought process completely. i also rid many very different conditions. i guess i would have to call him and see what he recomended or thought would be best for my type of riding.
 

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Ive read in some posts that say you need like 3 inches of sag in the rear or some crap. I checked mine bone stock and I had that.[/b]
Setting an arbitrary amount of sag in the rear end is not the way to go. A lot of people try to use dirtbike sag logic on ATV suspension. Setting ATV suspension is more like setting up a car than a motorcycle.

In an ATV you set frame to ground clearance, not "Sag" and you certainly can't use a universal magic number like 3" on all setups, there's a lot more to it than that - I'll get into that in a few moments....


The rear shock on my bike is pretty much perfect for my weight (165lbs)but the fronts are a lil stiff. I love the adjustment in both sets of shocks which was one of the main reasons i got the 450 and not a 400ex and BOY am I glad I did... I rode my buddies 400ex at the mx track that he got 3 weeks before i got my 450 (both brand new) and compared to mine, it was like riding one of those old ATC's with no suspension (im sure you remember those) it was just clunky bumpy the front shocks on that thing are garbage. He took mine around the track once and was like holy crap dude this thing rides amazing!!![/b]
The adjustment of the shocks is not the difference in this case - the 450R shocks are a lot better base shocks than the 400EX shocks.

Actually the 400EX shocks work halfway well when they're stock, they just don't last very long before they need to be replaced.

If a shock is truely a good shock and is setup very well, it doesn't need adjustments. In fact, most people (not necessarily you) will screw up their suspensions trying to adjust things instead of improving it, especially if they've been professionally setup.

There are a lot of reasons to buy a 450R instead of a 400EX, the shocks are only one.


if aftermarket shocks are better than these things, I'd probably die and go to heaven cause I like the stock setup just fine but ive been toying with the GT revalve... just dont like the whole no more rebound adjustment part sad.gif[/b]
If setup correctly, you don't need the adjustments. What a professional shock tuner does is take your shock and makes adjustments you can't by changing the internal valving, springing and in GT Thunder's case, he's changing things you may never have thought of - like where the suspension's travel in the chassis is (which is why he removes that rebound adjustment).

Here's the deal - When lowering the center of gravity by setting a particular frame to ground clearance, you make the quad's "bottommed out frame height" much more critical.

What do I mean by bottommed out frame height? The amount of distance from the frame to the ground when the shocks are mechanically bottomed out (metal to metal, not just to the rubber bumper).

On the 450R, let's say you set a typical cross country static height of 8" frame to ground clearance for good cornering.

The 450R's Bottommed out frame height is somewhere in the neighborhood of 3.5 to 4" when stock.

If you do a little quick math, with an 8" static setting, you only have 4" of suspension travel until mechanical bottom out unless you change the position of the travel in the chassis. Not good.....

So, what GTT does is remove the rebound adjustment, which gives more shaft travel and allows a bottommed out frame height closer to 1.5". That's an increase of over 50% down travel if you run typical cross country settings.

More critical is the linkage replacement in the rear ---- there's all sorts of magic theories out there on why the linkage needs to be replaced, from the angle the shock sits at to mysterious unknown forces that a different linkage invokes. The simple truth is he's setting leverage ratio and more importantly, bottommed out & extended frame heights.

Once he has the chassis setup more correctly, he can focus on setting up the shocks for your weight, configuration, riding style, and your new found, better chassis settings.

The great thing about the 450R's shocks is since they are rebuildable & are of decent quality, they allow you to send them to a professional shock tuner instead of having to buy new hardware.

Hope this helps....
 

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that did help me alot 86.... i really appreciate that post...the part of the chassis to ground clearance and how he does it with taking the rebound adjuster off...can't say it enough
thanks for that.... i didn't know and couldn't understand what he was doin until you posted it
 

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Gabe, you da man with this suspension chit. I learnt more from your post than I have in years. That post should damn near be pinned.



8
 

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I will be sending all 3 of my shocks to him in the next couple of weeks. Probably when I get my frame back from getting gussets. That way when I get it back from PC shocks should be back ready to go!!!
 
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