Author Topic: Short-Arse Setup  (Read 3190 times)

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  • Offline Cozmik

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    Offline Cozmik

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    Short-Arse Setup
    on: May 12, 2019, 10.10 pm
    May 12, 2019, 10.10 pm
    After test riding a couple of CT’s I bought a 2014 CT a couple of weeks ago, I thought I would get used to the height but in truth stopping (Particularly on uneven ground) and manoeuvring the bike has been difficult and has been spoiling what is otherwise a very capable machine.

    I am 5’10” on a good day with an I side leg of 29”, some way short of the standard seat height. This forum is a fantastic place to get advice, info and read other members experiences. As ever you will find varying views but I thought it might be useful to share my experience of lowering the seat height.

    I started with the Honda OEM low seat. Easy swap but was not sufficient to resolve my lack of confidence, I could still only get one foot squarely down by sliding slightly to one side. As a side note I found the low seat reasonably comfortable (max ride 2 hours), with the occasional stand on the pegs to let the air circulate the nether regions  :001:.

    Many members have highlighted issues when lowering 30mm so I decided to steer clear and went for 20mm lowering link plates from Projection-Racing.

    The plates were relatively easy to fit if you have a centre stand, remove muffler, remove 3 bolts & OEM plates,  lift rear wheel, refit new plates & muffler, done.

    Read on the CT forum that the forks must also be lowered by 10mm, this was not so straight forward as the right fork was well and truly jammed in the clamp. Long story short it took a long time to resolve  :157:

    Workshop manual (for torque settings) available on the following thread: https://www.crosstourer.com/index.php?topic=5223.0

    Mission accomplished, took me around three hours due to fork issues but all relatively straight forward.

    I have also read on the CT forum that many members have reported positive results with Veejays suspension setup so I setup my suspension (preload & rebound damping) accordingly. Excellent thread here: https://www.crosstourer.com/index.php/topic,2029.msg52790.html#msg52790

    Results & conclusion: I can now put both feet flat on the ground. Getting on and off the bike is easier. The bike sits a little more upright on the side stand but there is no need to shorten. I can just about get the bike onto the centre stand  but it requires significant effort, it will do for the odd occasion when I need it.

    On the road it has completely transformed the bike for me, stopping and manoeuvring is a breeze and inspires confidence. The handling is absolutely fine, a bit hard with Veejay’s settings (crap roads in the Forest of Dean) so I will probably dial it back a bit. Can scrape the pegs without fouling the centre stand and the bike feels as planted as ever.   

    Hope that’s useful to others who might struggle with height of the CT or for other short arses out there that are considering buying one!
    Last Edit: May 12, 2019, 10.14 pm by Cozmik

  • Offline Rinsewind

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    Offline Rinsewind

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    Re: Short-Arse Setup
    Reply #1 on: Jun 19, 2019, 10.28 am
    Jun 19, 2019, 10.28 am
     :046: Hi Cozmik, many thanks for the great post. I am 5ft10 and struggling to get both feet on the floor too. Your post has given me the solution. I will be doing the same changes soon.
    Thanks

  • Offline Martymouse

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    Offline Martymouse

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    Re: Short-Arse Setup
    Reply #2 on: Jun 19, 2019, 01.22 pm
    Jun 19, 2019, 01.22 pm
    From one short-arse (5'8" on a good day …) to another - pretty much what I did with the following variations …

    I went for 30mm lowering, but kept the standard seat.
    Removed the hugger  - it was touching the under tray on big bumps
    Removed the centre stand - it was touching down
    Bought a s/h side stand and had it chopped (and i have the original)

    Front and rear upgraded at the same time.
    I am happy, but the missus still thinks it is too tall!!
    Puch125, CD175, CB175, C90, CB100, CB900, VF750, K100, CBR1000, CBR1000, DR650SE, RF900R, Bayliner, RF900R, Super Blackbird, Piaggio X9 125, Burgman 650, Hayabusa, VFR1200F, VFR1200X, F800 GT,

  • Offline marcparnes

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    Offline marcparnes

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    Re: Short-Arse Setup
    Reply #3 on: Jun 19, 2019, 10.05 pm
    Jun 19, 2019, 10.05 pm
    *Originally Posted by Cozmik [+]
    Read on the CT forum that the forks must also be lowered by 10mm, this was not so straight forward as the right fork was well and truly jammed in the clamp. Long story short it took a long time to resolve  :157:.
    I realize that Internet Lore and even Hyperpro tells us to lower the front by less than the back but that is not logical and as a matter of fact Race Tech doesn't agree with it either and if anyone should know they should. If you lower the rear more than the back you are increasing fork rake which causes the bike to run wide in corners and makes turn-in more difficult. In order to keep the bike level and maintain the original geometry you would need to lower the front slightly MORE than the back due to the rake. In your case if you lowered the rear by 20 mm you'll need to lower the front by 22.5 mm to keep the bike level. In my case I used Projection-Racing's 30 mm plates which actually lowered the bike 25.5 mm measured with me on it so I lowered the front 28.75 mm. Both side and center stand work fine and at 5'10" with a 30" inseam I can reach the ground finally. The bike handles exactly as it did before and I haven't touched anything down.

    Here's a little test for you and anyone else who's curious: go for a ride and take some of your favorite turns at a good clip with the front set the way you have it now. Then go back and lower the front (assuming the back is actually down by 20 mm) 22.5 mm and take the same turns again and see what you think. I bet you'll like it. Also notice that the stability on the highway hasn't changed either.

    Just my opinion but I'll bet Hyperpro's recommendation to only lower the front by 10 mm is driven more from a concern that on some bikes the fender clearance could be issue and they're playing safe rather than from a technical view. On our bike there is no issue with clearance, I measured it.

    Here is some text from Race Tech's website:
    In general when lowering a motorcycle, both the front and rear end should be lowered the same amount. We have G.M.D. Computrack services available to check for proper geometry and chassis alignment.

    Marc
    Marc Parnes
    2018 Goldwing DCT Tour in Red
    2020 BMW R1200GS
    A Life of Bikes
    AMA Life Member

  • Offline mzflorida

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    Offline mzflorida

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    Re: Short-Arse Setup
    Reply #4 on: Jun 19, 2019, 10.57 pm
    Jun 19, 2019, 10.57 pm
    Marc's post makes tons of sense.  Appreciate you posting it.  Probably will keep a rider or two right side up.   

  • Offline Martymouse

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    Offline Martymouse

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    Re: Short-Arse Setup
    Reply #5 on: Jun 20, 2019, 08.07 am
    Jun 20, 2019, 08.07 am
    'cos I am simple I am happy to take marcparnes posting at face value and appreciate there are lots of opinions on what is a right handling bike.
    However … and you that was coming …
    I reckon Hyperpro know something about suspension setup and if their published installation says drop the front 10mm that's what I am doing.
    My front and rear setup was done by a shop I have used for 10 years and run and sponsor their own racing bike - so I reckon they know what they are doing too.
    I have had this setup for a couple of years - never had a moment and am very much right side up (and that's now tempting fate  :003: )
    If you drop the bike 30mm the side stand angle *will* be marginal - I wasn't interested in taking the chance it could topple.
    Centre stand and pegs grounding follows the same logic - centre stand is off (never miss it) and i can get the pegs down without too much effort (and i am a long way from a boy(!!) racer)

    Frankly, never taken the time to work through the geometry and maths of all of this and really don't want too.
    There is often more than one way to achieve the same end; we agree to differ.
    Peace and love ...  :152:
    Puch125, CD175, CB175, C90, CB100, CB900, VF750, K100, CBR1000, CBR1000, DR650SE, RF900R, Bayliner, RF900R, Super Blackbird, Piaggio X9 125, Burgman 650, Hayabusa, VFR1200F, VFR1200X, F800 GT,

  • Offline mzflorida

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    Offline mzflorida

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    Re: Short-Arse Setup
    Reply #6 on: Jun 20, 2019, 12.05 pm
    Jun 20, 2019, 12.05 pm
    Marty, I see your point entirely and agree with your position wholeheartedly.  I enjoy the technicality and precision of our machines which may give me some bias in my opinions!  Like, I 've said before, the suspension is the item I know least about on a motorcycle.   But logically, and geometrically, MArc's suggestion seems sound.  For the record, one of the reasons I am on here so often is to learn more about the suspension.  So, I could be talking out of my hind side.     

  • Offline Cozmik

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    Offline Cozmik

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    Re: Short-Arse Setup
    Reply #7 on: Jun 24, 2019, 12.17 am
    Jun 24, 2019, 12.17 am
    Thanks for the feedback. As stated there are many different views and it is often difficult to find the right answer. The amount to lower the forks is discussed in several different posts in this forum and there does not seem to be a definitive answer. Often the right answer comes down to personal preference anyway!

    Regarding running wide in corners (20mm rear, 10mm front) I have not noticed any issues but following Marc’s comments I will lower the front by 15mm and then 20mm and report the results back to this discussion.

    Since the first post I have removed the centre stand as it did occasionally bottom out. I do tend to scrape the peg feelers on tight corners but that’s only to be expected on a lowered bike not to mention the fact that my previous bike was a sports bike.  :001:

     



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