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My suspension project is now ready. I installed three components: rear shock absorbter, lowering links and adjustable front caps. The shock is a basic model from Ohlins with 56 mm stroke and 312 mm eye-to-eye length. I don't remember exact values of the OEM model, just recall 40 mm and 296 mm. If those values were right, the new one gives 16 mm more stroke and has 16 mm more length. So the change would be approximately 2.68 * 16 = 42.88 mm more rear wheel movement in downward direction. I decided to install new links (in photo) rising the rear wheel 20 mm and lowering the bike body by same number, as a result decreasing the rear wheel downward movement to 2.68 * 16 - 20 mm = 22.88 mm and increasing correspondingly the upward movement 20 mm . After that I adjusted the rider sag to 40 mm, resulting to a bike body position change 22.88 - 40 = -17.12 mm, corresponding the sag of the OEM shock. Then I decreased the front sag conservatively from 56 mm to 45 mm. The riding experience tells that the new rear shock is much more gentle for instance on speed bumps. On the road the bike gives a very stable feeling, maybe I can even decrease rebound. The problem with the OEM shock was that all the gentle part of the spring was already lost under the rider weight and you had only the harsh part left, the result of course depends on the rider weight.

Some words about the spring. It is only 140 N/mm. Using this number we get the load 140 * 56 = 7840 N to reach full stroke. If we use a shock with 40 mm stroke we need a spring 7840/40=196 N/mm. Hopefully my calculations are right.
 

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Did the suspension/shock upgrade work

Joshua,

I have a 2015 CTX for about a year now. I downsized from a Honda ST1300 to get a lighter bike that also lets me have both feet on the ground. There is a lot to like to the CTX, but I dissatisfied with the suspension. Far less control on bumpy roads. What do you think about the upgrade you did? How has it changed ride quailty?
 

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Thank you Josh for the rear suspension post / idea back in February. Back in mid-May, I ordered the YSS MZ 456-300 TRL-48 myself. Finally got it in from UPS today.

Anyways, I figure I post a couple pictures of the shock out of the box so if someone is also interested they have close ups of the top / bottom of the shock assembly and adjustments.
Now that a couple of months have gone by, what do you think of that shock?
 

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Sorry about the long delay in responding, it works good for my purposes.

However, I want to add the caveat that my main goal was really just to get an easy way to adjust "preload" in the field when I tour with a lot of luggage.

For the most part the OEM shock largely was "OK", unless I hit a large pot hole which would bottom out the suspension. As a reference I weigh about 155 +/- 5 lbs depending on the amount beer I elect to consume in any given month.

My goal was to be able to easily adjust the shock when I do multi-day tour with camping gear. With the YSS shock and some of the other units mentioned here you have more adjustments to play around with. I.E. the OEM just had "pre-load" adjustment, but the YSS shock allows for both "preload" and rebound damping" adjustments. Other aftermarket units can provide "preload," "rebound damping" and "compression damping" adjustments. These adjustments may or may not make a major difference to your ride if you mainly are just cruising around.

If you haven't adjusted motorcycle suspension in the past - I would recommend doing a bit of research to make sure you find exactly what suits your needs and understand how to take full advantage of the various settings provided by the shock. Cycle World has an article that discusses the basics here: (Suspension Setup Guide).
 
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