I have a 2016 FXS which I have been adjusting to my riding needs. In my case this means dual use with combined riding in grass/wood lands and asphalt.
Understand this is not a toy, but it is a working piece of equipment used daily in running a ranch. As such it is a tool used for many task and that meant I had to touch down flat footed any time and any place I stopped. This was my need and the reason for the mods.
Tires have been changed to Conti Escapes.
Forks raised by 2 inches in the triple clamps.
Rear shock is one of two brands. The first is a Ikon "special" made for me and a spring for my weight. https://www.ikonshocksusa.com/products/3610-zero-low-shock-absorber
The second shock is the original Showa heavily modified with a new spring sleeve machined and installed after a 2 inch lowering kit.JB Covington, Vendor Rear OEM Shock Mods. Reports:
"Crude math suggest the stock spring is around 7.5kg/mm
The stock spring / shock design features a large of amount of preload on the spring, even in the "softest" preload setting.
The custom shock spacer features 3mm of preload on the stock spring with the shortened shock.
The 40mm Showa Shock with 14m shock body features a low speed compression adjuster that functions on rod charge, a rebound adjuster that functions off piston bypass bleed, and frictionless nitrogen bladder design."
The seat is thinned down to reduce the ride height by 2 inchs.
As to the original suspension design of the FXS, It could be better. Understand that I have raced GP, MX, Cow Trails, Woods and some of that riding was on an OSSA Pioneer, Cushman, Kawasakis and others.
I do not understand why ZERO did not hire a suspension designer that comprehended the term SUSPENSION. As stock the 8 plus inches of rear travel on a 290 lb Bike that comes with a spring so stiff that a rider of 160 pounds cannot adjust sag is a waste of air.
The ride height/seat height is currently at 30 inches, the rear sag is at 1/2 of an inch and a easy bounce of my rear will move it down a bit more.
After 9 months I am now pleasantly surprised each time I ride this FXS and I would be happy to talk to ZERO on what real bikes should do.
The FXS is a Great Bike and needs some simple intelligent changes to provide a more enjoyable ride.
Pictures, Specs, Parts Providers and other information if any want to take a look at these changes.
MX Seat Pro
3502 Temescal Ave
NORCO, CA 92860
Rear OEM Shock Modsjbi@ridejbi.com
IKON Aftermarket Shock
Ikon Shocks USAnils@ikonshocksusa.comwww.ikonshocksusa.com
For those who would like to learn more about suspension and real world handling then read these books.
Motorbike Suspensions: Modern Design and Optimisation
Dario Croccolo, Massimiliano de Agostinis
"Book Description: Language: English . Although they may look like simple components, the motorbike fork plays a critical role in the overall dynamic behaviour of motorcycles. It must provide appropriate stiffness characteristics, damping capabilities and the lowest sliding friction values in order to guarantee as much performance, safety and comfort as possible to the rider. Front Motorbike Suspensions addresses the fundamental aspects of the structural design of a motorbike fork. Utilizing the authors many years of experience in this industrial research topic, Motorbike Suspensions provides useful design rules and applied mechanical design theories to optimize the shape of motorbike suspension. Overall structural considerations are explored alongside specific aspects including how bolted and adhesive bonded joints design can be applied to these components. RD designers in the motorcycle industry who would like to improve their knowledge about the structural design of motorbike suspension will find Motorbike Suspension a concise and coherent guide to this specific feature. Whereas, undergraduates and graduates in industrial engineering matters may use this as a case study for an interesting application of the theories learned from machine design courses."
Race Tech's Motorcycle Suspension Bible
Thede, Paul; Parks, Lee
Based on Paul Thede’s wildly popular Race Tech Suspension Seminars taught around the world, this step-by-step guide shows anyone how to make their bike, or their kid’s, handle like a pro’s. The three forces of suspension; testing procedures; even the black art of chassis geometry: Thede explains it all. The book provides step-by-step photos of suspension disassembly and assembly as well as detailed troubleshooting guides for dirt, street, and supermoto–promising a solution to virtually any handling problem.
About the Authors:
Paul Thede is widely considered the ultimate motorcycle suspension guru. He is the owner and chief engineer of Race Tech, the largest motorcycle suspension modifier in the world.
Lee Parks is the author of the best-selling riding skills book Total Control. Based on his internationally renowned Total Control Advanced Riding Clinics, Total Control is considered by many to be the riding skills bible. Parks formerly edited Motorcycle Consumer News, Motorcycle Product News, and Motorcyclist magazines. He is also the owner of Lee Parks Design, a motorcycle glove and apparel manufacturer in Apple Valley, CA. leeparksdesign.com
High Performance Riding: Street Techniques for Total Control
"Note from Sparkymoto: A couple of chapters are about suspension."
Synopsis: Today's super high-performance bikes are the most potent vehicles ever sold to the public and they demand advanced riding skills. This is the perfect book for riders who want to take their street riding skills to a higher level. Total Control explains the ins and outs of high-performance street riding. Lee Parks, one of the most accomplished riders, racers, authors and instructors in the world, helps riders master the awe-inspiring performance potential of modern motorcycles.This book gives riders everything they need to develop the techniques and survival skills necessary to become a proficient, accomplished, and safer street rider. High quality photos, detailed instructions, and professional diagrams highlight the intricacies and proper techniques of street riding. Readers will come away with a better understanding of everything from braking and cornering to proper throttle control, resulting in a more exciting yet safer ride.
About the Author:
Lee Parks has been racing for over 16 years, and he won the 2001 G.M.D. Computrack National Endurance Series Championship in the Lightweight class. He also finished 2nd in the 1994 AMA 125GP national championship in its exhibition year. He spent five years as the editor and chief test rider of Motorcycle Consumer News where he road tested every new street motorcycle available in the U.S. and became one of the top performance-testing journalists in the world. He is based in Victorville, CA.
A $ spent on these books is worth thousands spent by mistake on the wrong parts later.
Remember, only make one change at a time and be able to back track easily.