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Discussion Starter #81
Haven't worked on the bike in a while; things have been kind of crazy with the holidays and all. Right now it is surrounded by Christmas decoration boxes in my garage, so I couldn't get to it right now if I wanted to.

The tank still needs to be sanded to smooth out the second coat of filler, and it may need another coat. Hard to tell until I take it down again.

Tony got me a new shock for Christmas (well, not new new, but it might as well be it's so clean) [thumbsup] I believe it's from a Gixxer, and should give me a better ride. The stocker is kind of like sitting on a trampoline while someone is jumping, and is non-adjustable. The new one has some adjustment options and should be pretty good for my weight. That project will happen this spring.
 

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The stock shock feels like one of those cheap full suspenion mountain bikes at Walmart. Boing, Boing, Boing...

The shock is actually from a bandit 1200...
 

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Turbodude said:
The stock shock feels like one of those cheap full suspension mountain bikes at Walmart. Boing, Boing, Boing...

The shock is actually from a bandit 1200...
Ugh well good thing you're changing it out then because a full day's ride with a suspension setup like that would be burital. I had a snowmobile with a stiff non-adjustable suspension and it was horrible. Although I did get quite the workout from it and sleep like a baby at night [laugh].

Well if the "new" shock is from a bandit 1200 then there shouldn't be any issues with fitment and having the ability to make adjustments will be nice.

I look forward to hearing all about it and of course seeing pics :)
 

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Discussion Starter #84
Turbodude said:
The shock is actually from a bandit 1200...
Is it? Man my memory is ****...
 

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hangin_biposto said:
Is it? Man my memory is nuts...
Be advised though that the second gen B12 shock will raise the rear of the bike up about and inch and change IIRC. Using the previous gen will lower the bike, I don't remember how much. You can compensate by messing with dogbone length but it really alters how the stroke of the shock works.

PM PitterB4 as he did the 2nd gen mod on the Bandit boards and can give you a more accurate number.

I myself went for the GSXR1100 rear shock which required some minor mods. It endt up raising the ride height about 1.25" which was just right for me. I also have a 32 inseam and flatfoot the bike no problem. If you look at the pic of my bike against the side shot of yours, you can see the difference in swingarm angles. That stock Bandit 4 shock is aweful.

Be advised as well that lowering the triples to match over 1" can cause the front tire to scrub on the headers with the pillow-soft front end. I'd advise some gold valves, straight rate springs and an oil change to match the new rear as the front end wallows a bit without some help. The gold valves completely transformed my bike.

These bikes handle very well as it is and these simple mods will really help even more. The difference before and after with mine was pretty significant and I didn't even go as nuts as some others mounting up USD's and modding newer GSXR stuff onto my bike (as much as I'd like to). I have no problem keeping up in the corners and with some minor motor work can hang (as best as possible) in the straight bits.

Good luck!

-Randy
 

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Discussion Starter #88
Sorry, my mind is made up about the wheels [laugh] I don't dislike the way the white looks necessarily; I just know I'll like the new color a lot more.

Thanks for the info Randy- I'm sure as spring approaches you'll see us on the Bandit forum more. We still have a lot to do to it.

We are definitely going to be rebuilding the front forks regardless of what we do to the rear because both of them are leaking pretty badly.

We are going to have to play with it a bit because I can't really have the bike any taller than it is, especially once I put new tires on. From crotch to heel I'm only 27", and riding boots aren't going to give me much of a lift.

I also plan to put on some straighter bars with a mild rise because I absolutely hate moving the bike around with the stock handlebars on there. I feel like I have no leverage on it.
 

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hangin_biposto said:
I also plan to put on some straighter bars with a mild rise because I absolutely hate moving the bike around with the stock handlebars on there. I feel like I have no leverage on it.
You may want to ride it first-rolling it is not a good indication of how you will feel while riding it.


That and as far as I know you're trying to build a bike you won't mind if you drop. You're handlebars are going to get replaced, either way ;)
 

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I'd just do generic superbike bars for the time being. They cost like $25 or so at any shop or even on E-Bay so if you don't like them, no big loss.

They're very close to the bend Monsters have and less "Fonzarelli" in comparison to the stockers.
 

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Thanks for the tip on the superbike handle bars. [thumbsup] I think any bars would be an improvement over the stock ones..

The shock is a 1st gen bandit 1200. I picked this over a gsxr one because I didn't want to respring a shock due to it being too stiff. If it proves to be too soft I will look into the gsxr 1100 ones (the extra adjustability and remote resovior would be nice.)

What spring rates did you install in your bike? According to race tech the stockers are .56 kg/mm or so. The lowest uprated spring they sell is .80. I am wondering if the .80's might be too stiff for Meagan. I have .85's on my monster and I think they are too stiff. (I have the preload adjusted all the way out and I am just short of the ideal sag.) I think with a lighter bike and Meag's weight that it might be too stiff. I was debating how a gold valve + new oil would work on stock forksprings. (Keep in mind we live in Maine and the roads here are pretty rough!)
 

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I'm in SE PA so very much similar road conditions: mostly a bomb-run with some sections of smooth pavement.

I did what's called the NC Rick mod: I cut off the tighter coiled progressive section of the springs and used PVC to adjust the length and preload accordingly. My Gold valves are set at 3.5 turns and I use 15wt oil with +10mm over the factory level (can't remember off the top of my head what that is at the moment). I'm 160 with gear and tend to ride on the more aggressive end of the spectrum and it's much better than stock and I have 30mm of sag as well. Very much personal preference though. Race Tech recommends a .90 for my weight and style whereas Sonic recommends a .95. You be the judge.

I'd suggest running the stockers (springs) with Gold Valves at 2.5 to 2.75 turns (They come wound at 2.5 IIRC) and use 10 wt oil if she's light. By cutting the springs, I increased the rate to .95 because I'm only using the linear end of the spring. You can also just cut the coils till you find a sweet spot, I just went right for all of them. The internals of the fork will need to be modified (the orifice in the bottom of the legs drilled a little bit bigger) so that the Gold Valve will handle the compression duties, rebound will be handled by oil viscosity. Those things make a huge difference in how the forks work, before investing in springs, see if the stockers will work first. If you want adjustable preload, SV650 caps fit onto the tops of the tubes but they're kinda pricey. PVC works fine for that but a bit more tedius.

The B12 shock should be fine, best part is that it bolts right in, no mods. Stock B4 is 305mm eye to eye while a 1st gen B12 is 306 so ride height should remain the same. You get a stiffer spring (which will be softened slightly by the linkage) as well as adjustable rebound. Also, no need to lower the forks in the triples to compensate (I did just to quicken the front end a touch). I think that once you get the front end dialed in, the stiffer rear will match up just fine, again, personal preference. I found the rear shock was a joke as well, big improvements to be had by swapping out.

The GSXR1100 rear is 10mm longer which raises the rear an inch and change. You have to do some slight machining to get it to shoe in but is nice for all the adjustability. If I were to do it again, I'll probably opt for one of the newer GSXR shocks and mod/relocate accordingly for the plain reason that they're newer and more plentiful.

I wouldn't even hesitate doing the Gold Valves, they're a revelation. Since they do all of the compression work, the forks end up becoming more plush and controlled versus stock. You're taking the forks down anyway to redo the seals, might as well go full boat. The B12 shock, a HUGE improvement, should be fine and a better set of bars, she'll be cornering with the best of them. A set of Pilot Powers and she'll be asking for rear sets.

Best of luck!

-Randy

One last thing: the pipe on her bike should have a compression strap where the sleeve meets the midpipe to seal it. I don't know if yours came with it, but you can probably cheat with a properly sized hose clamp and some hi-temp copper silicone.
 

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Thanks Randy!!! [thumbsup] The plan is to try the gold valve w/stock springs first. I see you know what it's like to ride through some rough roads, too...

We do have the band clamp and oring that seal the muffler. I just threw it on quickly so we could start the bike.

Do you know where we can find a stainless steel front brake line? Will one from another bike work?
 

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Brake line: I went with a sized one from the motorcycle shop: use a cloth tape and measure then match. I'm pretty sure it was a Goodrich setup with the screw-on ends. I reused the banjo bolts but replaced the copper washers. Total cost: $25. You could look for one for a GS500 as they're the same set up but on the opposite side. I didn't know that at the time.

Make sure you repack that muffler as well, mine had the original packing in it and it was LOUD. The pink FMF loose stuff works pretty well.

Looks like you've got a shopping list!
 

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Discussion Starter #96
Nothing new lately; it's been too cold to paint and a lot of the things we want to do require space and tools that I don't currently have at my place.

The plan is to move the bike to my beau's when things start to warm up (if things ever start to warm up - we're in the middle of another infernal blizzard...). He has more tools than I do and we will have room to lift the bike from the ceiling beam to drop the forks and do the rear shock and all that jazz.

For now when I come and go I just peek at it, waiting patiently for me to show it some love.

For Valentine's Day, instead of flowers and candy, Tony bought me the black superbike bars I had been eyeing to replace the awful stock bars (that offer no leverage at all). I can't wait to see how they look on the bike.

Once spring approaces you'll see more and more updates, believe me. She still has quite the makeover coming.

:)
 

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Discussion Starter #98
The weather is warm and the streets are being swept locally. Hopefully in the next couple of weeks we can get the bike to my BF's place and go to town. I just got my own apartment so I've been pretty busy getting that squared away and getting my life out of boxes. I'm chomping at the bit though!
 

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Discussion Starter #100
DuCaTiNi said:
hurry up biposto, you might miss the season :-\
Over my dead body!

The apartment is nice; I'm actually adjusting to being alone much better than I thought. My cat, on the other hand, is driving me absolutely nutty! She was an outdoor cat but it wouldn't be smart to let her out where I am now, and she protests every night, all night, while I try to sleep. Extra emphasis on try. (Usually unsuccessfully!) :mad:
 
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