Setting Up New Trackbike - Yamaha R6 Forum: YZF-R6 Forums
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-12-2016, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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Setting Up New Trackbike

This past Fall, I bought an 09 R6 from a local racer/track rider. The bike came with 25mm Ohlins carts in the forks and a TTX in the rear and was rolling on Dunlop GPAs with a 190/60 rear.

I took the suspension out and sent it to Markbilt Racebikes to have it refreshed and resprung for my weight. They installed .95 springs in the forks with a 190mm oil level and swapped in a 95 Ohlins spring on the shock. The forks had two lines showing above the triple. The rear shock had the stock shim installed. I did not measure the shock length before I sent it out.

I reinstalled the forks with two lines showing and with ~294mm shock length and no shim. I contacted Markbilt for suggestions on initial set up numbers, and they said it was difficult to give good numbers without knowing what tires I will be running.

So, that got me thinking about what tires I will be running. The bike will be used for track days and hopefully a few race rounds with LRRS. I plan on ending up on race tires toward the end of the year. I will likely be using Pirellis. The issue is that I have never ridden on any race tires. I have done a dozen or so track days on my R6S, all on street tires (Q3's and then Pirelli Supercorsa SP's).

So, I am up in the air deciding how to start out this season. I'll be hitting the track for a weekend in late April. This will be the first time that I have ridden this bike. I am considering installing some street tires on the bike for the first track outing. I figure since I have never been on the bike that I would at least ride on some tires that I'm familiar with. I am also considering switching to a 180/55 rear.

Does this seem like a logical plan? How should I plan on transitioning from riding on street tires into race tires? Should I try some street tires or jump to something like the Pirelli Track Day Slicks? If I switch to a 180 rear, do I just need to reinstall the stock shock shim?

Thanks. I'm sure I'll come up with a few more questions this week as I put this bike back together.

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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-13-2016, 08:27 AM
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Re: Setting Up New Trackbike

As far as the tires you're going to start out on, if you've only ever ridden street tires (and are a B or slower A group rider) then my recommendation would be to go with those Pirelli pro's. The Q3's are a great tire, but on the track they will wear out faster, and as your pace increases they will just start moving around a lot where the Pro will continue to stick. When you're running a decent pace, 3 laps on the Q3 makes it feel like a worn out Pro. There is really no benefit in staying on a street tire unless you're actually going to ride the bike on the street.

Then when you decide to go to a race compound, if you stick with Pirelli, you don't have to change anything. Do not adjust your geometry for the Pirelli 180/60 any different from the 180/55. I made that mistake and it made my bike handle like absolute garbage. If you decide to switch to the Dunlop, you'll probably want to remove the rear shim as the Dunlop is a very large tire, but I can't say for sure because I have not tried it.
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-13-2016, 02:02 PM
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Re: Setting Up New Trackbike

search in the suspension setup thread...theres some real #s to use for initial setup.

I have a bike with 25mm carts in the forks... I run the forks flush or even a mm sunk in the triples.
dont have a shim on the rear shock as it has ride height... but ~300mm sounds right. Im on the heavy side... at ~240 in gear.
My other bikes has the 30mm kit... it is just flush with the triples.
Ran the GPa pros since they were takeoffs from a local MotoA guy.
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-13-2016, 05:17 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Setting Up New Trackbike

Quote:
Originally Posted by HIS OWN 6 View Post
As far as the tires you're going to start out on, if you've only ever ridden street tires (and are a B or slower A group rider) then my recommendation would be to go with those Pirelli pro's. The Q3's are a great tire, but on the track they will wear out faster, and as your pace increases they will just start moving around a lot where the Pro will continue to stick. When you're running a decent pace, 3 laps on the Q3 makes it feel like a worn out Pro. There is really no benefit in staying on a street tire unless you're actually going to ride the bike on the street.

Then when you decide to go to a race compound, if you stick with Pirelli, you don't have to change anything. Do not adjust your geometry for the Pirelli 180/60 any different from the 180/55. I made that mistake and it made my bike handle like absolute garbage. If you decide to switch to the Dunlop, you'll probably want to remove the rear shim as the Dunlop is a very large tire, but I can't say for sure because I have not tried it.
I'm definitely leaning towards the Pro (trackday) slicks. The main reason that I have been considering street tires to start is that I have never ridden this bike. Or any other 3d gen bike for that matter. I just don't want to head out for the first few sessions and not be able to keep enough heat in the tires while I'm riding slower, trying to get comfortable on the bike. What is the general consensus on the Trackday slicks? My understanding is that they are pretty forgiving as they can be run without warmers?

I was running an upper Intermediate pace on my R6S, but understand this bike will take some getting used to.

As far as the Pirelli 180/55 vs 60, I thought that the 60 was a good bit taller? What kind of fork height and shock length were you running with those?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboBlew View Post
search in the suspension setup thread...theres some real #s to use for initial setup.

I have a bike with 25mm carts in the forks... I run the forks flush or even a mm sunk in the triples.
dont have a shim on the rear shock as it has ride height... but ~300mm sounds right. Im on the heavy side... at ~240 in gear.
My other bikes has the 30mm kit... it is just flush with the triples.
Ran the GPa pros since they were takeoffs from a local MotoA guy.
I'll take a look at that thread.

What size tire were you running with those settings? I've seen suggestions varying from keeping the forks flush to 2 lines showing, and anywhere in between. Also shock lengths from 290-300mm. I guess it will be a feeling out and adjusting process. I just want to try to get a nice pretty neutral baseline for my first time on the bike. I would prefer a little slower turn if it gives me more stability. That makes me think I may want to raise the front a little more than where I have it now.

The shock is fully adjustable for length. What is the benefit of running the shim vs. just adding the shim distance to the shock length?

Thanks for all the input.

Last edited by yuengling910; 01-13-2016 at 05:20 PM.
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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-13-2016, 05:59 PM
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Re: Setting Up New Trackbike

Quote:
Originally Posted by yuengling910 View Post

I'll take a look at that thread.

What size tire were you running with those settings? I've seen suggestions varying from keeping the forks flush to 2 lines showing, and anywhere in between. Also shock lengths from 290-300mm. I guess it will be a feeling out and adjusting process. I just want to try to get a nice pretty neutral baseline for my first time on the bike. I would prefer a little slower turn if it gives me more stability. That makes me think I may want to raise the front a little more than where I have it now.

The shock is fully adjustable for length. What is the benefit of running the shim vs. just adding the shim distance to the shock length?

Thanks for all the input.
you can add/subtract shims for setting ride height. Or adjust the shock height to your needs. The shock adjustment is a tad more precise.
Dont know the overall lengthof your forks but if they have carts... starting at having them flush in the triples is pretty safe. Lower the front too much and you run the chance of bottoming out.

I ran the 120/70 and 190/60 variety. Good thing is you can "flip" the tire without issue. Designed to run in both directions so a plus for longevity.
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-15-2016, 08:45 AM
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Re: Setting Up New Trackbike

Quote:
Originally Posted by yuengling910 View Post
I'm definitely leaning towards the Pro (trackday) slicks. The main reason that I have been considering street tires to start is that I have never ridden this bike. Or any other 3d gen bike for that matter. I just don't want to head out for the first few sessions and not be able to keep enough heat in the tires while I'm riding slower, trying to get comfortable on the bike. What is the general consensus on the Trackday slicks? My understanding is that they are pretty forgiving as they can be run without warmers?

I was running an upper Intermediate pace on my R6S, but understand this bike will take some getting used to.

As far as the Pirelli 180/55 vs 60, I thought that the 60 was a good bit taller? What kind of fork height and shock length were you running with those?
Keeping heat is not a problem on the Pirelli Pro's. You can pretty much treat them like a street tire if you want. I use warmers when I have them on my bike just so they're already hot, but my wife's bike always has them and we never use warmers on hers. I have no problem jumping on her bike, doing a quick warm up lap or 2 and then running them hard. They heat up quick, and will hold more heat because of that. And you can still go pretty damn fast on them.

At the mid to fast end of advanced group you will notice they don't grip as well as an SC, but it won't slow you down much. In my experience it makes for really good practice because you are trying to be as smooth as possible to avoid losing time sliding around, then when you go out on a race compound for race day you can maintain those techniques but kick it up a notch with the extra grip.

The 60 tire is a good bit taller. Something like 10mm if I remember correctly. I run 1 extra tooth on the rear sprocket because of it. When I first switched I pulled the shock shim, and raised the front a couple mm to try to compensate and it transferred way too much weight to the rear. The bike was just awful, and the front tire developed some pretty nasty geometry induced tearing. The thing is that there is not a 10mm difference when you're leaned over. I ended up with the shim back in the rear and the front only 1 or 2mm higher than it originally was. I can tell the 60 is steeper because the revs change more than the 55 does when you lean/stand the bike quickly. The advantage of using the shim is that it's easier to add/remove it than it is to adjust the shock length. If you cut part of it off, it's even easier and you can just loosen the top nut and slide it out.

I run the forks flush against the triple, and the shock is 291 or 292 plus the shim. I want to say the shim is 3mm, and it effects the ride height by 2x. But my 20mm Race Tech carts might not be as long as yours. If I remember, I will look up my fork length relative to the lower clamp. That's a better measurement that eliminates the variation across different forks. Also keep in mind that sag is a geometry component as well. Running the forks 5mm lower in the clamp, but with 5mm more sag is a wash as far as geometry goes.
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-15-2016, 03:40 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Setting Up New Trackbike

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboBlew View Post
you can add/subtract shims for setting ride height. Or adjust the shock height to your needs. The shock adjustment is a tad more precise.
Dont know the overall lengthof your forks but if they have carts... starting at having them flush in the triples is pretty safe. Lower the front too much and you run the chance of bottoming out.

I ran the 120/70 and 190/60 variety. Good thing is you can "flip" the tire without issue. Designed to run in both directions so a plus for longevity.
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Thanks for the info. I've been reading through the thread you mentioned and am finding some pretty good stuff in there towards the end.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HIS OWN 6 View Post
Keeping heat is not a problem on the Pirelli Pro's. You can pretty much treat them like a street tire if you want. I use warmers when I have them on my bike just so they're already hot, but my wife's bike always has them and we never use warmers on hers. I have no problem jumping on her bike, doing a quick warm up lap or 2 and then running them hard. They heat up quick, and will hold more heat because of that. And you can still go pretty damn fast on them.

At the mid to fast end of advanced group you will notice they don't grip as well as an SC, but it won't slow you down much. In my experience it makes for really good practice because you are trying to be as smooth as possible to avoid losing time sliding around, then when you go out on a race compound for race day you can maintain those techniques but kick it up a notch with the extra grip.

The 60 tire is a good bit taller. Something like 10mm if I remember correctly. I run 1 extra tooth on the rear sprocket because of it. When I first switched I pulled the shock shim, and raised the front a couple mm to try to compensate and it transferred way too much weight to the rear. The bike was just awful, and the front tire developed some pretty nasty geometry induced tearing. The thing is that there is not a 10mm difference when you're leaned over. I ended up with the shim back in the rear and the front only 1 or 2mm higher than it originally was. I can tell the 60 is steeper because the revs change more than the 55 does when you lean/stand the bike quickly. The advantage of using the shim is that it's easier to add/remove it than it is to adjust the shock length. If you cut part of it off, it's even easier and you can just loosen the top nut and slide it out.

I run the forks flush against the triple, and the shock is 291 or 292 plus the shim. I want to say the shim is 3mm, and it effects the ride height by 2x. But my 20mm Race Tech carts might not be as long as yours. If I remember, I will look up my fork length relative to the lower clamp. That's a better measurement that eliminates the variation across different forks. Also keep in mind that sag is a geometry component as well. Running the forks 5mm lower in the clamp, but with 5mm more sag is a wash as far as geometry goes.
This is exactly the type of feedback I was looking for. Thanks. I'll probably end up on the Pro Slicks to start. I like the idea that set up will be similar if I do switch to Pirelli race rubber.

I'm thinking that I'll probably start on a 180 rear. I'd like to keep at least one variable similar to something that I'm used to. I'll throw the shim back in the rear and consider lowering the forks in the triples some. I guess from there on out it will just have to wait until I can get some seat time on this thing.
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-15-2016, 10:23 PM
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Re: Setting Up New Trackbike

Ok, I checked my notes... With the front up on a head-lift stand, the distance from the top of the lower triple clamp to the center of the axle is 520mm. The shock is 291mm plus the 3mm shim.
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-16-2016, 09:51 AM
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I'll 2nd the settings His Own 6 posted. It's a great place to start.
I run the 180/60 with a Ohlins GP shock at the OEM length eye-to-eye and the shim in place.
My forks currently stick out of the top triple by 5mm
Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't the actual fork length change between 09 and 10 model years? I thought I read somewhere that the 10- up forks were longer. Not a lot, but still.
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 03:53 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Setting Up New Trackbike

Quote:
Originally Posted by HIS OWN 6 View Post
Ok, I checked my notes... With the front up on a head-lift stand, the distance from the top of the lower triple clamp to the center of the axle is 520mm. The shock is 291mm plus the 3mm shim.
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Evil Twin View Post
I'll 2nd the settings His Own 6 posted. It's a great place to start.
I run the 180/60 with a Ohlins GP shock at the OEM length eye-to-eye and the shim in place.
My forks currently stick out of the top triple by 5mm
Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't the actual fork length change between 09 and 10 model years? I thought I read somewhere that the 10- up forks were longer. Not a lot, but still.

Great info. I'll try a baseline with something in that range. I'll have to get a measurement this week of the lower triple to axle, length. Was that measurement with the wheel where it sits on a stand, or with a foot on the wheel to compress the top-out spring?

The shock is currently at 293.5mm and installed without the shim. I guess that puts me right around the 291mm + stock shim mark. I'll leave it there for now and consider adding the shim if I switch to a 180/55.
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