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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Are there any better ones out there at a reasonable cost, I read someplace about a euro shock that is a bit longer and a softer ride for old...er bad backs! :wink2:
 

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Sign Me Up for that....at present I am on the fifth notch and while it works it still bottoms out on Potholes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
No one has changed the rear shock? I wonder if the 650 ninja or Verseys would ride better? The stock one must be for 250lb riders and up... rough for smaller folks!
 

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No one has changed the rear shock? I wonder if the 650 ninja or Verseys would ride better? The stock one must be for 250lb riders and up... rough for smaller folks!
no, the stock stock setting is very soft, and very easily bottoms out. I am around 220 lb, and I moved mine from the stock 2 to 4. I am much more happy with it now. Try just changing the preload up 1 setting to 3 and see if that helps.
 

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Mine is on it's way out of Europe - holiday season there

Will be longer & with better damping - will give 100-120mm travel rather than the original 80mm

I can live with the extra seat height

Will also lengthen the side stand accordingly

Will put more load on the front tyre (good thing) & steepen the steering angle slightly (steers quicker)
 

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Mine is on it's way out of Europe - holiday season there

Will be longer & with better damping - will give 100-120mm travel rather than the original 80mm

I can live with the extra seat height

Will also lengthen the side stand accordingly

Will put more load on the front tyre (good thing) & steepen the steering angle slightly (steers quicker)
I have no doubt that your mod will work fine if not better for the sake of comfort.
What amuses me though is that if Kawa released the bike the way you're setting up people would want to mod it to lower it down to 80mm travel for aesthetics.
In fact I saw one such owner actually lower the rear shock from stock!:surprise:

To help your mod I've seen very affordable adjustable front shock dampeners on ebay to suit 2015 650 Ninja's. These are directly compatible parts to our Vulcan S after referencing part numbers through Kawasaki. They put a 10mm preload upon install which can be increase with adjustment.

I considered it but after realising the front end bore very little load, dampening stock set up wasn't required.
 

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I had a shock made by Firefox Racing of Keighley, Yorkshire (England) for about 375$, delivered to France. (I hope I'm allowed to mention companies?). They built one for my weight- 240lbs- with an appropriate spring and some other tweaks which I'm afraid I've forgotten. It made a huge difference.
The rebound damping is adjustable over 60 clicks (!) At present I've got it set just above half way. It's a YSS shock and you can also get one which is height adjustable, which is what I had previously on my DR800.
Two possible problems: the spring is red, I forgot to ask, lol and it has shown up the shortcomings of the front forks. I sent the original shock to them as a copy but I don't fancy posting my forks!!
Hope this helps?
 

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Hi Capt Evil - already done the fork mods - emulators to improve damping, with no reason to increase preload - increase in oil level is sufficient

I'm setting the bike up as best suit my needs - capable of 700-800klms per day (I was doing 1,000-1,2000klms days on my ZRX & up to 900 klms on my Husky adventure bike)

The forward controls are not as conducive to greater distances, although one never knows the new rear shock & my modified seat might be enough

I did 460klms comfortably last Sunday & 520klms the previous Sunday

I'm getting more impressed with the bike's capabilities with every ride
 

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I am very interested in your longer shock. Do you have a make/model/place to buy?

As far as longer rides, I found the same problem with the forward controls. Too much of a pressure point near my tailbone after about an hour to an hour and a half of riding, and impossible to shift your weight to a different spot due to the shape of the seat. I am dropping the bike off next Wednesday to have the pegs moved to mid controls and have a classic 1970s-style flat seat put on. I'll report back here with pictures.
 

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I have the pegs at the shortest reach, to give me better control, minimising forward control

My modified seat does allow me to move around a bit - I did nearly 3 hours on Sunday Dungog to Narrabee (208 klms), Sydney Sunday afternoon traffic yeuk!
 

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You ignored the most important part of the post. :)


What's the name/make/model of the longer shock and where can I buy it?
 

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I will let the forum know as soon as mine arrives & I'm able to prove the mod works

I don't want to mislead anyone on the forum

I'll only post information that I've personally tried
 

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I will let the forum know as soon as mine arrives & I'm able to prove the mod works

I don't want to mislead anyone on the forum

I'll only post information that I've personally tried
So what will these mods accomplish? Are you trying to make the bike's suspension more sporty or softer? Forgive me- I do not know the technical terms but I do know I'm not very impressed by the stock suspension and am thinking about upgrading. My wife has a BMW F650GS and it's incredible. You barely feel any bumps or potholes! I know it is a very different setup but I'd like to get my S closer to that sort of traction and comfort if possible. The Kawi at times feels too soft (say if I'm getting on an on ramp and hit a rough patch of road- it bounces and feels like the back tire wants to slip out) but also, at times, too stiff ( if I hit a divot on the highway I get tossed up a bit). Fyi- I haven't adjusted the mono shock yet. I'm gonna bring it to the shop and have them set it up to me to see if that helps. It's still in the factory set position so I'm hoping that will make a difference but I'm a bit that skeptical based on reviews. Any thoughts?
 

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I'm looking at a longer shock to increase wheel travel for 80mm to possibly 120mm - plus improved damping to pre-load, plus compression & rebound adjustment

I work with Terry Hay at Shock Treatment, we've enjoyed considerable success over the past 15 years

The OEM stock is not re-buildable & not adjustable except for pre-load

My upgraded forks certainly show the imperfections in the shock

I use my Vulcan S for longer distance touring, so comfort & handling are important given the state of Australia's minor/back roads
 

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The Kawi at times feels too soft (say if I'm getting on an on ramp and hit a rough patch of road- it bounces and feels like the back tire wants to slip out) but also, at times, too stiff ( if I hit a divot on the highway I get tossed up a bit). Fyi- I haven't adjusted the mono shock yet. I'm gonna bring it to the shop and have them set it up to me to see if that helps. It's still in the factory set position so I'm hoping that will make a difference but I'm a bit that skeptical based on reviews. Any thoughts?
What you are experiencing when you are "tossed up" is the shock using up all the available travel and bottoming out. If the pre-load setting is insufficient for the load (rider, passenger, luggage) then too large a proportion of the shock travel will have already been used up before a wheel actually turns with little travel left to handle the bumps.
The factory set position is #2 of 7 available preload positions.
Suspension tuning can be a black art on machines with a sophisticated/complicated range of damping and pre-load positions at the back AND front. It would be pretty easy to mess things up and turn your pride and joy into a rodeo ride on a machine like that.
The Vulcan S is NOT one of those machines. Only the rear pre-load can be adjusted.
It's easy to do once the wrench is released from the the under seat tool roll. No need to concern youself with static sag, rebound, compression damping, or any other technoblurb, no need to consult your dealer.
What matters here is that you make an adjustment and decide if it feels better. If it does adjust it further in the same direction if not go the other way.
Assuming you are set at position 2 I would suggest you rotate the stepped ring to posn 4 (mid posn) and ride over various road conditions at various speeds, assess and adjust from there to suit your preference.
I'm currently set at 5 but I'm a big lad. :wink2:
 

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Ok- I will try to adjust the pre-load. That sounds simple enough! The shop suspension tayloring setup is about $100-seems a bit high considering how basic this sounds. But actually-I was concerned to do the stock adjustment because my previous bike was a Ryca C-1 cafe racer conversion and the suspension was so stiff! I am concerned that with the spring preload adjustment-the same will happen, making the ride to stiff and bumpy! I am 5'5" at 155lb and my riding style varies depending on my mood and the direction I head on our crappy California, Bay Area highways/back roads. But as I age, my rides are getting more mellow with longer cruises...until I get a twisties bug.

I guess I will try the adjustment and see how it goes. Fingers crossed- If it doesn't work, I might be looking for aftermarket suspension advice! Thanks for the feedback!
 

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I had mentioned the same before in another post. Feeling the bottoming out, the best thing I did was adjust it up a notch and ride, what a difference it made, no more bouncing out of the seat and undulating bumps feel like i'm on a couch cushion. By all means try it and see what it does for you.
 

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Sadly the OEM shock has only pre-load adjustment

The Spring rate is set -usually to meet certain criteria (in Australia for 185kg load) which is generally too strong for single riders

The compression & rebound damping are not adjustable

The shock is not re-buildable

Preload can only effect sag - the point at which the shock starts to work (constant rate spring) - in theory the linkage control "rising-rate" etc

I'm 100kgs in my gear & yes the shock does "bottom-out" occasionally, given that I'm about to replace the shock, I've not bothered adjusting (lazy me, as it's only a 10second job)
 

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I haven't adjusted the mono shock yet. I'm gonna bring it to the shop and have them set it up to me to see if that helps. It's still in the factory set position so I'm hoping that will make a difference but I'm a bit that skeptical based on reviews. Any thoughts?
Don't pay for this, any shop or dealer I would think wouldn't even charge you. Page 124-126 of the manual, the shock is designed to be adjusted on the fly, say if you add weight like a passenger you can quickly adjust to compensate for the increase in payload. The tool is under the seat, it works like a jar opener, 2:09 of this video: https://youtu.be/TMDCEU98_9w

I'm 190lb, set at 4 and I have no complaints.
 

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I'm going to give it a whirl on 4. I have a day off on Thursday so Im gonna head out on a long ride and feel it out. Thanks for the feedback!!!!
 
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