Zedling Suspension

What is ride height adjustment & how it can transform your motorcycle

Ride height adjustment is a feature you can find on high range & top line motorbikes. This feature allows raising or lowering the bike’s suspension. This raising or lowering of suspension is achieved through an adjustment feature provided in the motorbike’s shock absorber & front fork which allows changing the length or mounting center distance of the shock absorber or front fork. This feature lowers or raises the riding seat height & handlebar height. However this is just a static advantage the rider gets to achieve a customized seat height & handle bar position. However this adjustment alters the bike’s geometry & can completely transform its handling performance.

                                                                      Rear Mono-Shock adjustment                                                               Front fork adjustment

Important is to adjust the length by just a few millimeters at once & evaluate your motorbike’s handling. Too much adjustment can change the geometrical parameters by large extent & result in undesirable handling changes.

Below we explain the effect of these adjustments on bikes geometrical parameters & resulting changes in handling performance. Your goal should be to tune such as to ride safely meeting your intended handling performance with these adjustments.

Through these adjustments, you can address problems related to:

  • High speed stability
  • Braking stability
  • Steering effort
  • Understeer/Oversteer issues
  • Seat height/handle bar height
  • Ground clearance

These adjustment features if not available in stock part then same can be upgraded using aftermarket products.

Lowering rear suspension is achieved by reducing the length of the rear shock absorber. This results in an increase in castor angle, higher trail ratio, a slight increase in wheel base, reduction in swinagarm angle & lower center of gravity.

These geometrical changes results in lower seat height, better stability at high speeds & better braking stability. However this also results in lower ground clearance, higher steering/turning effort & understeer behavior.

Raising rear suspension is achieved by increasing the length of rear shock absorber. This results in reduction in castor angle, lower trail ratio, slight reduction in wheel base, increased swingarm angle & higher center of gravity.

These geometrical changes results in quicker steering/turning, better handling, better squatting performance under acceleration & more ground clearance.  However this also results in higher seat height, lower stability during braking, lower high speed stability & oversteer behavior.

 Lowering front suspension is achieved by pushing the fork legs through the upper triples clamps. This results in reduction in castor angle, lower trail ratio, slight reduction in wheel base, lesser seat height & lower center of gravity.

These geometrical changes results in quicker steering/turning & better handling performance. However this also results in lesser stability at high speeds, lesser braking stability, lower ground clearance and oversteer behavior.

Raising front suspension is achieved by pulling out the fork legs from upper triple clamps. This results in increase in castor angle, higher trail ratio, slight increase in wheel base, higher seat height & higher center of gravity.

These geometrical changes results in better stability at high speeds, more ground clearance & better braking stability. However this also results in higher steering/turning effort, higher seat height & understeer behavior.

Zedling Author

Zedling Author

The Zedling blog is a specialist suspension blog focused on performance as well as commuting motorcycles. All posts are written by Zedling Suspension team which is a team of core suspension specialists with rich experience working with professional riders offering customized suspension solutions. The Zedling blog remains independent, informative & non commercial. The Zedling blog aims at providing authentic & practical knowledge about motorcycle suspension based on scientific facts & critical analysis of suspension products.

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