THis is for your rear shock
Not all shocks share the same adjustment characteristics, so please take a look at the shock to see what adjustment you have. Also note the shock can come with no oil/nitrogen reservoir (eg: SV 650), with a piggy back oil/nitrogen reservoir built into the shock (eg: GSXR’s) or with a remote reservoir (eg: Penske, Fox, Ohlins)
In the SV650 and R6, it is a simple ramp adjuster that can be moved using the OEM tool. Clockwise increases preload, anti clockwise decreases it.
Other shocks may have two rings, the upper serving as a lock ring. The lock ring can be moved using the OEM tool and the second ring can be moved clockwise or counter clockwise to adjust preload accordingly. Should the OEM tool be missing the trusty mallet and flat blade screwdriver will work to loosen the lock ring and adjust the second ring. Spray some lubricant onto the threads on the shock body to ease movement (eg: WD 40).
Some shocks require the use of a specific tool (eg: Penske) that must be present for any preload adjustments to take place.
Preload is initially used when setting SAG. Preload can be added if the rider experiences front forks becoming light or getting a “headshake” under hard acceleration. This causes the bike to squat on the rear wheel and alters the weight distribution on the front and rear wheels. Preload can be added to reduce this problem.
The rebound adjuster is usually located in the center of the hasp locating the shock to the rear suspension linkage, and commonly requires a flat head screwdriver to be used for making adjustments. Sometimes the adjustments are measured in “clicks”, other times in degrees of turn. Usually OEM settings are in the middle of adjustment. Other rebound adjusters are rings at the bottom of the shock shaft that turn clockwise and anti-clockwise. Check to see what system you have!
Firstly turn the rebound adjusters all the way in and write down how many turns/clicks there were. Then take the rebound adjustment all the way out so that you know how much total adjustment there is. With the adjustment all the way out and the bike comfortably balanced between your legs, compress the shock vigorously by bouncing on the seat and applying all your weight to this motion. As the shock begins the upstroke, let it move naturally and observe the action. The rebound stroke may come back very quickly to cause the shock to top out (maintain the balance of the bike while doing this!!).
Adjust the rebound all the way in, repeat the same action with the bike comfortably balanced between your legs and observe the difference in the range of motion –the shock will rise back up slowly. What you are trying to achieve is the shock rising back to the top of the first rebound stroke naturally, not quickly or not too slow (or the rear end will “pack” in causing removal of weight from the front wheel) and staying there. You will need to work the adjuster until you have the rebound action set correctly.
This adjuster is usually found on the upper section of the shock and it commonly requires a flat head screwdriver to be used for making adjustments. Sometimes the adjustments are measured in “clicks”, other times in degrees of turn. Usually OEM settings are in the middle of adjustment.
Firstly turn the compression adjuster all the way in and write down how many turns/clicks there were. Then take the compression adjustment all the way out so that you know how much total adjustment there is. With the adjustment all the way out sit on the bike and balance it between your legs, then push down vigorously compress the shock. You will be able to feel the way in which the shock moves through the downward/compression stroke, which will be fairly easily (keep the bike balanced while doing this!!).
Then adjust the compression all the way in, repeat the compressing action with the bike balanced between your legs and observe/feel the difference in the range of motion –the shock will compress more quickly and will not travel as far on the compression stroke. What you are trying to achieve is the compression stroke allowing the shock to move without restricting the amount of travel of the shock shaft, which causes the sensation of “packing”. You will need to work the adjusters until you have the rebound action set correctly.
NOTE: compression adjustment is very subjective compared to the rebound adjustment which is very easy to see. It takes a lot more feel when making adjustments, which will take time to acquire.
For shocks with remote reservoirs, there are differing ways to adjust compression. Some have high and low speed circuits separated by different controls, or one control mechanism. In instances such as these, you may want to refer to the manual provided by the manufacturer, or contact the manufacturer for guidance.