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Discussion Starter #1
An Achilles Heel of my new 2017 TDub is the stock rear suspension.

In a word, it’s jarring over even modest bumps. If I don’t see a bump in time and get on the pegs, I get quite a jolt*.

My first instinct is that it’s oversprung for my 185 lb weight. My KTM 950 Adventure felt much softer.

Yet the conventional wisdom on this site seems to be that stock, the TDub is undersprung. So that maybe the jolt I feel is not the spring’s fault for being too firm, but for being too soft, resulting in bottoming.

Am I on the right track? Before I “spring” for a new spring, my stocker seems to have adjustment available to firm it up one notch.



Would this be a good first step? I have searched the site and gotten a fair amount of info on options, so I apologize if this has already been covered ad nauseum.


*Fun ride yesterday on the fire/logging trailsalong the Ocoee River near my N GA home:

 

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The rear shock changed in 2017 - prior to that year, there was little way of adjusting them - this was (2017) the first year that the adjuster was more obvious, and easier to get at

On the "old style" shocks, you had to compress the spring, and move a circlip up and down into a new position - so there is no comparison ....
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I went on a ride with a friend and asked him about my rear spring rate. He said when I sat on the bike, my 185 lb weight seemed to be using up an awful lot of the rear wheel travel.

Today, I took some measurements:

Measuring vertically from the floor, through the axle to a predetermined point on the plastic, I measured 28" with the bike unladen, and 26.2" sitting on the bike, for a "sag" of 1.8". If I'm doing my math right, my weight alone is using up just about 30% of the rear wheel travel, advertised as 5.9". I did not measure with the suspension completely unloaded, but could easily do so.

From that info, would I be advised to go one notch more preload - which is all my 2017 seems to offer? I may futz with that later today - if I do I'll remeasure and report back.
 

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The older bikes shock deficiencies are well documented, with several "cures" - we're covering new ground here, so keep us informed of developments .... ;)
 

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The TW suspension is limited on travel and compliance. Makes it even worse if you run more pressure in the tires for on road. Will be interesting to hear how the 2017 with easier adjustability works, Just my guess, when you reduce preload, it will ride even deeper into the sag and bottom quicker.
 

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I found that my TDub a 2015 I bought late in 2016 w/ 25 miles on it has gotten softer with use.....Or I have just gotten used to it. But I do stand anytime the going gets rough. so that could also be part of why I'm happy with the rear suspension. I bottom out the front suspension often and eventually (when seals need replacing) will get stiffer springs and a thicker fork oil. I weigh around 200lbs and run the tires at 16psi
 

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Discussion Starter #7
My thought was to increase preload - I have one more notch available.

Got the shock off. Any idea on how to compress the spring enough to rotate the collar?

I can always run it by the Yamaha dealer. I assume they have a proper spring compressor available.
 

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It does look a bit “in or out”

In which case, standard Yamaha TW rear shock rules apply

Change the shock …….
 

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An excerpt from Yamahas press department:

“Due to the number of complaints regarding the rear shock on the TW series of bikes, we have decided to reduce the settings options from three to two. After due consideration, it was agreed that in order to change the rear shock setting, the shock should still be required to be removed from the bike, and a spring compressor used in the process.

We trust that the continuity in this procedure will satisfy all concerned, and reassure our customers that we still do not take the suspension of the TW line of bikes seriously. This is in line with the design of the seat, which in over thirty years of development, has never meant to do any more than hold the battery in place.

Research is also currently underway to determine if the carburettor can be further reduced in size, thereby reducing fuel consumption due to blockages. There are no plans at present to improve the instrument cluster, or to bring it into line with that of our monkey bikes. While stocks of the Trail Wing front tire remain high, we will continue to keep this tire on our production bikes, as we have yet to receive a single complaint.”
 

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An excerpt from Yamahas press department:

“Due to the number of complaints regarding the rear shock on the TW series of bikes, we have decided to reduce the settings options from three to two. After due consideration, it was agreed that in order to change the rear shock setting, the shock should still be required to be removed from the bike, and a spring compressor used in the process.

We trust that the continuity in this procedure will satisfy all concerned, and reassure our customers that we still do not take the suspension of the TW line of bikes seriously. This is in line with the design of the seat, which in over thirty years of development, has never meant to do any more than hold the battery in place.

Research is also currently underway to determine if the carburettor can be further reduced in size, thereby reducing fuel consumption due to blockages. There are no plans at present to improve the instrument cluster, or to bring it into line with that of our monkey bikes. While stocks of the Trail Wing front tire remain high, we will continue to keep this tire on our production bikes, as we have yet to receive a single complaint.”

I was reading this post and taking it quite seriously for the first paragraph. Nice sarcasm!!! My favorite form of comedy.



Tom
 

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30% is the target for rider sag, so it appears the spring pre-load is set just fine for you. Unfortunately, the jarring you speak of is due to too much compression dampening, that is the job of the shock internals and is the result of a bad, cheap shock. Your choices are: to live with it, read through and try some of the inexpensive band-aid swaps tried since the bike came out 30 years ago, or pony up the $650 for a Works Performance shock that they build with springs and internals based on your weight and stated riding style and terrain.

I went with the Works. I decided the TW will be mine forever, so the investment to improve the biggest weakness of the bike, the suspension, was totally worth it. Also invest in the front with some Race Tech Gold Cartridge Emulators, pre-load adjusters and proper springs (if stock+adjusters won't cut it for you) and you won't be sorry.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
30% is the target for rider sag, so it appears the spring pre-load is set just fine for you.
I had seen that 30% figure online. So, you think going firmer a notch would actually make it worse?

...or pony up the $650 for a Works Performance shock that they build with springs and internals based on your weight and stated riding style and terrain.
That’s a thought. I also communicated with Sebastian at TW-Parts and he may offer some options as well.
 

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by the looks of your picture, it looks like the cheap engineers at yamaha have used a shorter spring and replaced the space with the adjuster. it looks to me, like that set up will never give any kind of performance. hell, it looks like it is going to be a pain in the ass it's whole life. they decided to make the weak point on the bike even weaker, instead of improving it. i would look at fleabay for something better
 

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Turning up the pre load doesnt make the spring stiffer, just makes it ride higher by shortening or "pre-loading" the shock. It might ride slightly better with more pre load? if there is more travel available when the shock begins its down stroke it seems like it might ride a little better?

How is it with the custom shock lrpcrcer? It seems like with the very limited travel and relatvely heavy tire, it wouldn't be great, even with a high "zoot" shock. Hard to have good bottoming resistance and a compliant ride with so little shock travel. I am considering having my DR350 Forks and Shock done by a custom shop, but they are cartidge forks, piggyback shock, both rebound and compression adjustable to start with, plus they have about 3" more travel to work with.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Seeking the wisdom of the crowd...

...should I reinstall the shock as is or bump it up a notch and see what happens?
 

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You're unhappy with the way it was. You've taken it off (so you know how and can do it again if needed).

Make the adjustment and try it for awhile. If it's worse, go to the notch on the other side of stock (if there is one); or back to stock.
 
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