ZX-10R Geometry Page
Originally I was not going to go into much depth on this page, but I felt I was remiss in not explaining how suspension and geometry work together to provide a final product. If you really want to read the ideology of motorcycle geometry and how it has evolved over the last couple decades then the old article can be read here, but I have to put this out there first & foremost.
One of the
biggest misconceptions in the industry about suspension
is that it only benefits those that are racing or super
aggressive etc. The truth is better suspension helps the
Novice rider with his/her first streetbike just like it
aids the Expert Racer at the top of the sport. Doesn't
matter if you are commuting in stop and go traffic every
day or trying to set a new lap record. If the bike is
more compliant, more comfortable and more responsive then
it is better for anyone's needs regardless of skill level
or intent of use. The suspension can be further fine
tuned to your specific needs as the racer at the limit of
traction aiming for a new lap record has different needs
from the damping rates than the guy wanting to take his
girlfriend on a ride to his favorite lunch spot, but more
compliance is always a good thing whether you need a
better ride on your daily commute or more grip while
getting on the gas exiting Turn 5.
Now let me go on to explain a personal stance because a lot of you like to send me emails trying to justify the OTHER brand of suspension you bought and want me to tell you that you made the right decision. I sell and service Ohlins because it is the best. I am not saying that other brands are not good or they won't work or anything of the sort. I am merely stating that if you want the absolute best products in the world then Ohlins is what you choose! The pinnacle of roadracing on this planet is MotoGP and those teams can afford to buy any brand of suspension they want and they all go with Ohlins. You don't see any teams at that level using WP, Mupo, Nitron etc. They want what works the best and that is Ohlins period. Most if not all of those other brands would be glad to GIVE MotoGP teams free product just to be able to say that a team at that level uses their stuff. The real truth is Ohlins doesn't sponsor any team. Even Rossi's team pays for their Ohlins products and support. They pay because it is the best and it is worth it so when you come to me asking me what I think about the brand you chose over Ohlins don't expect me to candycoat my response and tell you its just as good as Ohlins. It's not. It may be 100 times better than the OEM crap suspension you were using, but it is not Ohlins. With the Ohlins product you get top quality everything from the actual product design to the technical support. The pool of knowledge put into their products and available to the end users is immeasurable. Additionally I should point out that sometimes it doesn't even come down to how good your suspension is, but how good you think it is. The aspect of mental confidence is rarely mentioned in this ego-driven competitive sport, but for the average rider just knowing you have the best products on the planet installed on your bike is in many cases just as effective a tool for building confidence as using those parts to their full potential would be. The point is if you already know you have the best product in the world on your bike you damn sure won't be second guessing your decision and asking me what I think about it.
Back to the topic of the ZX-10R Specifically
In a very nice contrast to the way so many production bikes have been being delivered from the factories in the last decade or so where longer & longer swingarms coupled with unrealistic trail numbers require us to raise the front end up to atmospheric levels just to get the bike to finish the turn or even install offset triple clamps to accomplish the same task. THIS ZX-10R actually steers pretty damn decent and requires what I would consider more conventional methods of altering the geometry for proper track use. What I mean by that is we are finally getting back to raising the rear and not having to fight the front so much.
The bike as delivered does has some understeer, but it's not overly difficult to fix. A combination of shimming the rear shock mount and raising the front to increase trail makes pretty quick work of it. Along with that we have some tricks from within the forks with the oil height and spring rates as well for the guys that are really working on lap times.
Obviously I cannot give specifics for every single tire manufacturers actual diameters and combinations out there, but I will share what is working on my bike currently.
5% Linear Race Link
Ok... I keep getting emails about setting up the stock suspension on the Gen 4 ZX-10R
and damping of a sportbike is basically fine tuned to a
riders needs and is dictated by how fast the rider
actually is, how far they lean off the bike, the size and
profile of the tires, the quality of the suspension
and a list of other variables.
BACK TO THE ZX-10R Section HOMEPAGE