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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2012 KTM EXC 500 and want to ajust the front and rear suspension for the street. I weigh 170 pounds and am looking for the right setup for canyons. Any suggestions on how to go about this? I know its way too soft in the front right now but im not sure how stiff to make it
 

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I have a 2012 KTM EXC 500 and want to ajust the front and rear suspension for the street. I weigh 170 pounds and am looking for the right setup for canyons. Any suggestions on how to go about this? I know its way too soft in the front right now but im not sure how stiff to make it
Dude i know has the 350 version of that bike. He added some preload and turned compression and rebound (shock and forks) in completely and 5 clicks open. I was like, dude that total random setup will never work properly... I then rode it at the track and was amazed how this total random setup worked better than my smr specced suspension ;/ The 350 is very forgiving though :p
 

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I've been messaging Zucco Suspension in Italy for a few days trying to build a better setup guide hes worked with the top racers and the only guy willing so far to answer questions. Almost everyone just says "send it to a guy" which yeah is fine and I agree but one still needs to know how to tune it.

few things I've got to so far.

Sag 40-60mm front rider sag
70-90mm rear rider sag

compression and rebound need to be slower then normal dirt setup

you still want the front end to dive during braking and stay compressed during the corner.
if your front slides or under steers you have to much weight on the front (weight can be distributed with sag settings) if you find yourself leaning back mid turn because it feels like your front end is trying to tuck you may need to increase rear sag. you leaning back is a you increasing rear sag via body weight

if your on the exit and your back tire steps out immediately on the throttle your bike is to hard if it spins a second or two after getting on the throttle your compression is too soft.

Rebound is going to help push your tire into the ground allowing it to stick, to much and it could push it out while cornering.
compression needs to be slow enough to control dive under braking and throttle but not so much as your unable to use front end stroke in the corner.

if you ride knee down (I do a lot) the back end has got to be even stiffer and I feel as though its even more crucial to have correct springs and valving because you are less able to compensate with body throughout the turn (if your doing it right)

My hopes are to build a no kidding tuning guide for SM with the help of a few people because I like a lot here got tired of the whole "send it to a tuner and when you get it back just crank down the compression and rebound adjusters!:thumbup:" I've been racing desert for years and although we send it in for valving and springs (or do it yourself) we know how to tune for the terrain. I want that here too.
 

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I've been messaging Zucco Suspension in Italy for a few days trying to build a better setup guide hes worked with the top racers and the only guy willing so far to answer questions. Almost everyone just says "send it to a guy" which yeah is fine and I agree but one still needs to know how to tune it.

My hopes are to build a no kidding tuning guide for SM with the help of a few people because I like a lot here got tired of the whole "send it to a tuner and when you get it back just crank down the compression and rebound adjusters!:thumbup:" I've been racing desert for years and although we send it in for valving and springs (or do it yourself) we know how to tune for the terrain. I want that here too.
This is also an invitation for any of the local pros, national pros, suspension dudes who want to chime in or PM me so I can compile tips, tricks and settings!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I've been messaging Zucco Suspension in Italy for a few days trying to build a better setup guide hes worked with the top racers and the only guy willing so far to answer questions. Almost everyone just says "send it to a guy" which yeah is fine and I agree but one still needs to know how to tune it.

few things I've got to so far.

Sag 40-60mm front rider sag
70-90mm rear rider sag

compression and rebound need to be slower then normal dirt setup

you still want the front end to dive during braking and stay compressed during the corner.
if your front slides or under steers you have to much weight on the front (weight can be distributed with sag settings) if you find yourself leaning back mid turn because it feels like your front end is trying to tuck you may need to increase rear sag. you leaning back is a you increasing rear sag via body weight

if your on the exit and your back tire steps out immediately on the throttle your bike is to hard if it spins a second or two after getting on the throttle your compression is too soft.

Rebound is going to help push your tire into the ground allowing it to stick, to much and it could push it out while cornering.
compression needs to be slow enough to control dive under braking and throttle but not so much as your unable to use front end stroke in the corner.

if you ride knee down (I do a lot) the back end has got to be even stiffer and I feel as though its even more crucial to have correct springs and valving because you are less able to compensate with body throughout the turn (if your doing it right)

My hopes are to build a no kidding tuning guide for SM with the help of a few people because I like a lot here got tired of the whole "send it to a tuner and when you get it back just crank down the compression and rebound adjusters!:thumbup:" I've been racing desert for years and although we send it in for valving and springs (or do it yourself) we know how to tune for the terrain. I want that here too.


this is a big help. im going to set my bike to those specs and see how i like it. right now i know my rear sag is a little soft but my front suspension is what i really need to dial in. have you changed your rear spring to a stiffer spring?
 

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I haven't. Mostly because my bike serves dual duty as a desert sled. Guys are shooting for 20mm of static sag as well. I didn't put that in the above post. I got pretty close with my desert racing springs.

A good amount is going to be achieved with valving. But I feel a good plush valving should be close. Also in the corner you want your front to compress to around 3/4 total travel Sounds like a lot and the big trick is getting it there smoothly during the braking zone as you want it to be settled mostly prior to tip in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I've been messaging Zucco Suspension in Italy for a few days trying to build a better setup guide hes worked with the top racers and the only guy willing so far to answer questions. Almost everyone just says "send it to a guy" which yeah is fine and I agree but one still needs to know how to tune it.

few things I've got to so far.

Sag 40-60mm front rider sag
70-90mm rear rider sag

compression and rebound need to be slower then normal dirt setup

you still want the front end to dive during braking and stay compressed during the corner.
if your front slides or under steers you have to much weight on the front (weight can be distributed with sag settings) if you find yourself leaning back mid turn because it feels like your front end is trying to tuck you may need to increase rear sag. you leaning back is a you increasing rear sag via body weight

if your on the exit and your back tire steps out immediately on the throttle your bike is to hard if it spins a second or two after getting on the throttle your compression is too soft.

Rebound is going to help push your tire into the ground allowing it to stick, to much and it could push it out while cornering.
compression needs to be slow enough to control dive under braking and throttle but not so much as your unable to use front end stroke in the corner.

if you ride knee down (I do a lot) the back end has got to be even stiffer and I feel as though its even more crucial to have correct springs and valving because you are less able to compensate with body throughout the turn (if your doing it right)

My hopes are to build a no kidding tuning guide for SM with the help of a few people because I like a lot here got tired of the whole "send it to a tuner and when you get it back just crank down the compression and rebound adjusters!:thumbup:" I've been racing desert for years and although we send it in for valving and springs (or do it yourself) we know how to tune for the terrain. I want that here too.

how far along are you with your complete tuning guide??
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Very beginning stages. I want as many sources as possible. Are you looking for some info?
nothing specific other than my suspension settings which you helped me on. your informaton was valuable im just having a hard time dialing it in because i dont really know what it should feel like coming around a corner with the right settings. i really want to find a local track to go to one day and pick someones brain in person to help me dial it in.
 

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"you still want the front end to dive during braking and stay compressed during the corner.
if your front slides or under steers you have to much weight on the front (weight can be distributed with sag settings) if you find yourself leaning back mid turn because it feels like your front end is trying to tuck you may need to increase rear sag. you leaning back is a you increasing rear sag via body weight

if your on the exit and your back tire steps out immediately on the throttle your bike is to hard if it spins a second or two after getting on the throttle your compression is too soft."

work on that first getting that front end compressed and staying down. Also that back tire sticking on the exit. you're only going to get so far with stock valving but you can try to lower your fork oil a bit too. only go 10 mm at a time. Its and easy way to adjust how stiff your suspension gets at the end of its travel.

( the larger the air pocket the softer the forks become at the end of the stroke as air compresses easier then oil)

once you feel comfortable write down those settings and start adjusting its a great way to learn how your bike reacts and maybe you will find a setting you like more.

Keep track of changes. If you have the ability to test on a track. take a few laps and get a lap timer. try and focus on what the bike is doing adjust as necessary. Make change and do new laps (faster? slower?) record. Repeat.


1 - Front compression
This is when you want your front compression to control the "nose down" effects of braking so it turns in to corner properly
2 - Front rebound
You have let go of brakes, adjust front rebound so that the front forks extend at a controlled rate allowing you to keep your line.

3 - Rear Compression
You want the rear end to squat a bit as you apply the power.

Make sure that the rear rebound setting keeps the rear wheel in contact with the road.

Note: this image is only for illustration only. Your braking, turning and exit points and lines may vary, especially in the wet.
 

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Oh wow!!! This is what I’ve been looking for... mostly street and canyon rides...
I just build a wr450 2013... Very valuable info... I wish I could get my hands on that guide...


It is very hard to find info! Anyone know if there is something like a chart to start from?
 
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