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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello!

I'm new to suspension setup and learning so I experimented today with the factory settings on my 2006 999S...I figured out most things but some things I can't figure out:

- in user manual it says that stock preload (forks) should be 40mm...I don't undertand that as it can't be sag,can it?In the back it says only 13mm...

- the rear shock rebound settings is under the shock,so to wind it fully in you have to wind it clokwise but looking from under the bike,or in direction to shock,correct?

Thanks!
 

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Hello!

I'm new to suspension setup and learning so I experimented today with the factory settings on my 2006 999S...I figured out most things but some things I can't figure out:

- in user manual it says that stock preload (forks) should be 40mm...I don't undertand that as it can't be sag,can it?In the back it says only 13mm...

- the rear shock rebound settings is under the shock,so to wind it fully in you have to wind it clokwise but looking from under the bike,or in direction to shock,correct?

Thanks!
Rear suspension rebound is normal RH thread so looking from the top wind clockwise to reduce rebound damping. All the way in is full hard (anticlockwise looking from the top) Count 14 clicks (clockwise viewed from the top) from there to standard setting.

Total Front fork preload adjustment range is 40mm. Wind all the way in (clockwise) and the standard setting is 10mm. One turn = 1mm so standard setting is 10 turns out from all the way in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Rear suspension rebound is normal RH thread so looking from the top wind clockwise to reduce rebound damping. All the way in is full hard (anticlockwise looking from the top) Count 14 clicks (clockwise viewed from the top) from there to standard setting.

Total Front fork preload adjustment range is 40mm. Wind all the way in (clockwise) and the standard setting is 10mm. One turn = 1mm so standard setting is 10 turns out from all the way in.
I just got back from the garage...I counted how many full turnes I have from fully closed to fully open and I have 16 and 1/4 (full 360* turnes).

The bike was at 2 turns from closed.

So my next question is,am I supposed to have 40 full turns as per adjustment range or it's not related?

Also,I'm at 230lbs in gear and I checked my shock spring and it is /75 (bike was biposto) so according to other posts that should be weak for my weight?

Thanks again!
 

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The spring most likely is weak for your weight. I order stiffer spring with my Ohlins shocks and forks. I'm at least 230lbs now, When I bought the stuff some 4yrs ago I was 225lbs. When you learn what to turn where on the forks and shock, just take the tools with you and adjust a bit, ride, adjust, ride. You want that fork to use all the travel you can use a zip tie around the fork stanchions to see how much travel your getting out of the fork)...I like the shock a bit stiff. So when I sit on it, it only sags a smidge. You should be able to get that OEM Ohlins package stiff enough to work for you. If not a simple spring change is easy. Trial and error...
 

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I just got back from the garage...I counted how many full turnes I have from fully closed to fully open and I have 16 and 1/4 (full 360* turnes).

The bike was at 2 turns from closed.

So my next question is,am I supposed to have 40 full turns as per adjustment range or it's not related?

Also,I'm at 230lbs in gear and I checked my shock spring and it is /75 (bike was biposto) so according to other posts that should be weak for my weight?

Thanks again!
Ok so I haven't tried the full range on my forks as mine were full in all the way for preload so I adjusted out to 8mm. This is what the manual states.....
FRONT
Compression -10 clicks
Rebound - 12 clicks
Preload - 10 mm (1 turn = 1mm)
Adjustment Range
Compression - 30 clicks
Rebound - 12 clicks
Preload - 40mm
REAR
Rebound - 14 clicks (mono & biposto)
Compression - 10 clicks (mono & biposto)
Preload - 14mm (Biposto)
- 13mm (Monoposto)
Measurement for preload on the rear is standard spring length minus the stated measurement. Std spring is 162mm long so adjust to 148mm long for two seater.
Adjustment range for rear shock is not stated in the manual.
Spring Preload Range - 40mm
 

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You should be able to get that OEM Ohlins package stiff enough to work for you.
Not pointing a finger or anything, but here is my personal take on suspension in general (from experience):

Stiffer suspension does not automatically mean good. Most bikes (and cars) that I've come across on the race track have far too stiff settings. Most people seem to think that if they crank the suspension to stiffer, it will let them go faster. Not so.

Consider for a moment what the task of the suspension really is: to even out an irregular surface that the wheels roll on - and very importantly - to allow for weight transfer front-back or the other way by flexing when accelerating or breaking. In an ideal case, the suspension would be so flexible and smooth that the vehicle would stay level, whilst the wheels would stay connected with the surface at all times. That is where the name is derived from: "to suspend" the moving vehicle.

So, in fact, the goal should be to find the softest workable setting, which does not induce wallowing, chatter or other handling anomalies. Not to stiffen up the machine to the max. Heck, if that was true you could just replace the shock and damping by straight metal bars! Ever ridden an unsprung chopper (uuurrrk!)? Well, then you know how piggishly no (or too stiff) suspension works.

Balance is the key and what professional riders spend all their time trying to find prior to the Sunday race. If it was just a question of stiffening the bike up, it would be simple.
 

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Not pointing a finger or anything, but here is my personal take on suspension in general (from experience):

Stiffer suspension does not automatically mean good. Most bikes (and cars) that I've come across on the race track have far too stiff settings. Most people seem to think that if they crank the suspension to stiffer, it will let them go faster. Not so.

Consider for a moment what the task of the suspension really is: to even out an irregular surface that the wheels roll on - and very importantly - to allow for weight transfer front-back or the other way by flexing when accelerating or breaking. In an ideal case, the suspension would be so flexible and smooth that the vehicle would stay level, whilst the wheels would stay connected with the surface at all times. That is where the name is derived from: "to suspend" the moving vehicle.

So, in fact, the goal should be to find the softest workable setting, which does not induce wallowing, chatter or other handling anomalies. Not to stiffen up the machine to the max. Heck, if that was true you could just replace the shock and damping by straight metal bars! Ever ridden an unsprung chopper (uuurrrk!)? Well, then you know how piggishly no (or too stiff) suspension works.

Balance is the key and what professional riders spend all their time trying to find prior to the Sunday race. If it was just a question of stiffening the bike up, it would be simple.
..The problem with Ducati's "base" manual setting's is that they are usually for a 150-160lb rider. IMO the "OEM" Ohlins package isn't all that great. So I'm not sure how he'll make out. Again it's trial and error, everyone likes their suspension set up a certain way. In a perfect world you would like the forks to compress to the point where the use all their travel...but this travel needs to be controlled properly and this is where he needs to get out and adjust and ride.
His weight is some 75lbs over what Ducati uses as their "standard" base weight rider which they use to set up most all their suspensions (springs, oil). They are definitely not set up for a 225lb rider that's for sure. When I bought an Ohlins DU310 rear shock, I had it custom sprung for my weight. After I installed it I couldn't get the SHOWA fork to work well at all. No matter how I tuned it, it just couldn't cope. So I went w/ an Ohlins R/T fork w/ a custom spring and every thing work in harmony. The transformation of my 999 was amazing after adding the R/Ts. And IMO the OEM Ohlins fork are not much better than an OEM SHOWA.
It's much easier to deal with suspension set up when racing as the tracks are smooth, then you deal with corners, up and down hills....but for the most part their surfaces are smooth. You can't say that about the street where your sealing with pot holes, seams, irregular surfaces, lower speeds....tough to get every thing copacetic on the street.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The spring most likely is weak for your weight. I order stiffer spring with my Ohlins shocks and forks. I'm at least 230lbs now, When I bought the stuff some 4yrs ago I was 225lbs. When you learn what to turn where on the forks and shock, just take the tools with you and adjust a bit, ride, adjust, ride. You want that fork to use all the travel you can use a zip tie around the fork stanchions to see how much travel your getting out of the fork)...I like the shock a bit stiff. So when I sit on it, it only sags a smidge. You should be able to get that OEM Ohlins package stiff enough to work for you. If not a simple spring change is easy. Trial and error...
Thanks!

My fork preload was only 2 turns out and I had a zip tie and it was all the way down. I don't know about compression before as now I returned it to stock...too bad it's rain today so I can't take the bike out for a ride.

The bike sags very little now with the stock rebound and comp settings.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
..The problem with Ducati's "base" manual setting's is that they are usually for a 150-160lb rider. IMO the "OEM" Ohlins package isn't all that great. So I'm not sure how he'll make out. Again it's trial and error, everyone likes their suspension set up a certain way. In a perfect world you would like the forks to compress to the point where the use all their travel...but this travel needs to be controlled properly and this is where he needs to get out and adjust and ride.
His weight is some 75lbs over what Ducati uses as their "standard" base weight rider which they use to set up most all their suspensions (springs, oil). They are definitely not set up for a 225lb rider that's for sure. When I bought an Ohlins DU310 rear shock, I had it custom sprung for my weight. After I installed it I couldn't get the SHOWA fork to work well at all. No matter how I tuned it, it just couldn't cope. So I went w/ an Ohlins R/T fork w/ a custom spring and every thing work in harmony. The transformation of my 999 was amazing after adding the R/Ts. And IMO the OEM Ohlins fork are not much better than an OEM SHOWA.
It's much easier to deal with suspension set up when racing as the tracks are smooth, then you deal with corners, up and down hills....but for the most part their surfaces are smooth. You can't say that about the street where your sealing with pot holes, seams, irregular surfaces, lower speeds....tough to get every thing copacetic on the street.
I will definetly change the fork oil but I will try to find a setting with stock springs for road use as I'm new to V2 riding so it's early for the track...I will also install a slipper clutch as downshifts at hard braking can be tricky on this bike...
 

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After I installed it I couldn't get the SHOWA fork to work well at all. No matter how I tuned it, it just couldn't cope.
Exactly. Balance is the key, like I said.

And IMO the OEM Ohlins fork are not much better than an OEM SHOWA.
I beg to disagree.

It's much easier to deal with suspension set up when racing
Again, I beg to disagree - only this time vigorously!

Without going in to theoretical physics, let me just qualify my previous statement by emphasising that the task of the suspension is to keep the tyres in constant and even contact with the surface ridden on. Permanently would be nice, but that never is the case. Changing the input data, such as rider weight, surface, speed etc. does in no way change the basic task of the suspension. It only changes the resulting parameters.
 

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Thanks!

My fork preload was only 2 turns out and I had a zip tie and it was all the way down. I don't know about compression before as now I returned it to stock...too bad it's rain today so I can't take the bike out for a ride.

The bike sags very little now with the stock rebound and comp settings.

Only thing that controls sag is spring preload (spring weight).

So shock and forks need the correct springs for your riding weight.
Then use the pre load to set sags, all the shock providers websites have calculation sheets for setting static sags/rider sags.

Rebound and comp settings control the speed of which the shock moves
In compression and rebounding to its original state.
Now the oil weight plus valving can effect this, standard valving IMHO is not the best.

For a base setup that i use (with sag set) half of all compression dampening.
Then half of the compression dampening used in Rebound.

Then fine tune to suit the roads your riding on.
One setting wont suit everything but will ball park your ride and allow minor adjustment for individual scenarios.

As already stated, harder is not always better...
 

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Exactly. Balance is the key, like I said.



I beg to disagree.



Again, I beg to disagree - only this time vigorously!

Without going in to theoretical physics, let me just qualify my previous statement by emphasising that the task of the suspension is to keep the tyres in constant and even contact with the surface ridden on. Permanently would be nice, but that never is the case. Changing the input data, such as rider weight, surface, speed etc. does in no way change the basic task of the suspension. It only changes the resulting parameters.
I believe it would be a heck of a lot easier to balance the suspension on a smooth surface such as a race track vs. an imperfect surface you encounter on the street. Your never going to get your street set up "ideal". There are too many inconsistencies from one road surface to another. You can hope to find a happy medium that makes "spirited" (cornering) street riding fun. Most owners can't push the suspension hard enough either on the street or race track to take advantage of an upgraded suspension anyway.
In the OPs case we are dealing with a suspension that comes stock from the factory for a 150-160lb rider. The OP weighs some 75lbs more. I'm not sure that the OEM Ohlins can meet that range. Again, depends on his riding experience that will determine just how hard he works the suspension.
On the track your dealing w/ a very "consistant" surface. Now your throwing out a lot of imperfect road surfaces for the most part. The most important variable when it comes to amateur riding suspension set up is how fast or good the guy is and how hard he works the suspension. How much of the tire he uses. The OP didn't appear to me any way to be a pro or very experienced amateur rider.
IMO buying an OEM Ohlins suspended Ducati (any motorcycle)and thinking your getting a top quality suspension is a mistake, although some of the recent Ducs have top quality Ohlins (1198 Corse and 1199). It's better to buy a base model and install a superior quality after market Ohlins stuff sprung and valved for your weight.
 

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It's better to buy a base model and install a superior quality after market Ohlins stuff sprung and valved for your weight.
Only if you have an insatiable wish to order after-market parts, dollars to waste and so on. The OEM components that make up any modern sports bike in general, and a Ducati in particular, is totally suitable and beyond the capabilities of any type of street riding and most likely even as a privateer entry in any SBK series on a National level.

If the bike needs that amount of "improvements", I for one would consider something else...

When I was living in Hong Kong, where many people have more money than sense or knowledge, I saw guys signing out the, for example, latest GT3/2 or even GT1 Porsche, only to drive straight to an after-market tuner and to have them fit bigger wheels, ceramic huge breaks, coil-over shocks - not to forget virtually tons of carbon-fibre and bling! On a perfectly tuned and balanced product!

My point? Unless you have an incurable itch to depart on the "improvement" path, try tuning what you have. If it doesn't work, get a bike that does work for you, instead of trying to create a hodge-podge custom bike akin to something out of some TV series featuring Junior and a walrus-faced Senior constantly yelling at each other.

Not only are you wasting money, but all mods or "improvements" done, try flogging that bike. No takers? Hmmm...wonder why. After all that money spent and all those bling parts. Sad really. Isn't it?

My advice, again, to OP: try finding the softest setting that works, starting from that end going stiffer, then back off to just right, instead of the other way around. And, instead of starting the mindless shopping-spree. You can play with all sorts, including oil levels and weights, before changing the whole suspension! Remember, rebound damping is your most important tool and must be 2/3 more than compression damping at all times.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
This all is very helpful guys...even with reading pros and cons on setup from different people I learn a lot!

So,as for my riding,I was attending some track days with a SRAD GSXR 600 some years ago and even had light crashes on it...then I bought an cbr 1000rr 04 and had a track accident with it and broke my wrist...basically I was riding it on a track where the surface is extremely hard and it overheated my bridgestones bt014 in just 4 laps when I was pushing hard,they warned me in one corner before,also the bridgestone people warned me that I have incorrect tyres but on one corner the bike just dissapeared under me...

999s I ride on roads only and on bumpy ones too. But I have experienced some of the thing I later read on this forum that are suspension related,like on exit of corners when throttle is applied bike runs wide,than on full throttle shaking of steering on minor bumps,problems with higher speed change of direction.

Luckily I'm in the right place so I hope I can find a setting that can satisfy my riding and if I have to change the rear spring I guess it's not the end of the world :)

As for bling and customizing ducatis I'm all hooked up on that,I guess replacing black plastic parts with carbon isn't that bad :)
Has nothing to do with suspension but I thing it's a part of ducati ownership.
 

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Once you see the Ducati Performance catalog you'll get the "bug" Although the picken's are slim w/ the 999. Ebay has a lot of NOS and CF still.
My point was regarding the OEM Ohlins suspension is that IMO I would rather pass on buying a new Ducati w/ the suspension upgrade. Put the $$$ I saved and a little more into aftermarket stuff that is set up for my weight and the type of riding I do.
You'll dial in your Ohlins....go full soft, ride it....go full hard, ride it. Then dial it in by going 4 clicks at a time. Keep track of how many and in which way. When you find something you'll know it. Some guys place the info on a sticker and put it on the rear shock or fork leg for reference.
 

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Once you see the Ducati Performance catalog you'll get the "bug" Although the picken's are slim w/ the 999. Ebay has a lot of NOS and CF still.
My point was regarding the OEM Ohlins suspension is that IMO I would rather pass on buying a new Ducati w/ the suspension upgrade. Put the $$$ I saved and a little more into aftermarket stuff that is set up for my weight and the type of riding I do.
You'll dial in your Ohlins....go full soft, ride it....go full hard, ride it. Then dial it in by going 4 clicks at a time. Keep track of how many and in which way. When you find something you'll know it. Some guys place the info on a sticker and put it on the rear shock or fork leg for reference.
Off topic and with apologies to OP: ZDM, imagine if ever you were to sell your bike alongside a totally OEM of the same year. As a buyer, which one would you go for? Would you pay extra for the "extras" or would those put you off?

I let the question linger...
 
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