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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2013 Evo Corse SE (grey/black one) and have fiddled with the suspension settings for the first time in 1.5 years. I used settings I found from a website (sport bikes or something?) and while the rear Ohlins shock was the same as the settings listed already, the front settings were very different from the stock setting. So I've only played with the forks so far.

To say this has transformed my bike would be an understatement. Everything is better: it's rock solid, easy to tip in and feels sublime. I'm easily 10mph faster round corners I know well without even trying.

Before, it felt stiff to turn but, also vague and tetchy, it would often run wide and give steering shake on hard acceleration. I thought it was just my lack of skill.

Can someone please explain to me WHY its so dramatically better from only having the fork rebound and compression settings changed? I'd like to understand things better. Can the rear be improved?

Stock settings:
Rebound 12 clicks out
Compression 3/4 turn out

New settings:
Rebound 4 clicks out
Compression 1 1/2 turns out
 

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Well, the stock fork and shock are setup for a wide range of riders. They can't make it too soft, or someone may bottom and get hurt. They can't make it too stiff, or light guys will get chattered to death. So they build a compromised base stock suspension setting, like every other motorcycle brand does.

When you decrease compression, the fork will settle more into the stroke (where it belongs) and that changes the chassis geometry, which promotes better cornering. When you increase rebound, the fork will stay there instead of returning immediately, keeping the front wheel on the ground gripping. So in the end, it does make the bike steer better as a consequence.

With that said, the big thing is preload and spring rates. Those are where the stock settings are usually the poorest. Stiff springs will keep the bike from going into the stroke as well. So it's important to check sag and work those preload adjusters so you can make sure your in the right range. A substantial number of riders will be OK with the stock springs, however those of us who are lighter or heavier, will require different springs.

Do some research for Ducati 848 sag checking and you'll read all about how to check sag and where it should be. Then setting the clickers from there is easy.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Thanks for the detailed reply. It's beginning to make sense to me. What you say about rebound makes sense but my only concern is that its set very slow (4 clicks out instead of 12). Visually you can see the forks return noticeably slower yet it rides beautifully. On the videos I've watched the consensus seemed to be for a faster rebound than I have. I'm very interested to learn why this ultra slow rebound is working so well on my bike. Perhaps it indicates a setup issue with the rear shock?

I've taken your advice and measured and set the fork sag today:

126mm free
107mm static
95mm rider

So at 4 lines (stock) it was at 31mm sag (126-95mm) , which I believe is just within the acceptable range of 32-42mm

I reduced the preload to 6 lines out and that got me to 36mm sag. Hopefully this means the stock springs are OK for me for the time being (I'm ~170lbs without kit). I've not yet ridden the bike to see what effect that 5mm of extra sag will have.

Unfortunately I've not got a C spanner to adjust the rear shock sag (its an Ohlins DU8111). But I remember it being a vast improvement over the shock on my previous 848 Evo. That was horrid.
 

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I think the rear Ohlins shock should have 12 or 13mm of threads showing above the adjuster rings...that's most of the preload removed....I am also 170lbs without gear and this made my bike feel and steer awesome.

I also just added an adjustable ride height rod and set the rear swingarm angle correctly....we will see how it all works this weekend at my 1st race of the year....!!!
 

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What did you do to the front setting? Or do you have different forks installed?
If you're asking me, stock Showa forks with a bit more fork oil and made the fork tube flush with the stock triples.

I did buy 30mm offset triples for my bike, but realized they were for a 1098 and will not fit my 848. I'm gonna send the triples back to Nichols and have the steering stem changed out to fit my bike. After that, I'll adjust the stock forks as I go along. I hope to get the most out of the stock stuff as much as I can this year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks Johnny. Good info.

I've been out on the bike after setting sag and I have to say I didn't like it at all. Front felt harsh and the grippy on rails feeling the front had was gone. Tried reducing rebound from 4 to 8 then back to 6, then 4 again. Even tried stock setting of 12 rebound and 3/4 turn compression, just to get a handle on what the extra sag was doing.

I ended up going back home and setting the sag back to where it was (4 lines instead of 6) and dialled reb and comp to 4 clicks and 1 1/2. Just fantastic again. It seems to be the magic setting for me on this bike with the shock set to whatever it is.

My only conclusion after all that fiddling is that you can't set sag on the front only you have to do front and rear together. I can only surmise that changing the front sag unbalanced the bike front to back somehow. But I don't really know...
 

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Proper sag numbers are great for the track and all, but on the street, you can run a bit more to help soften things up since you probably won't be pushing that hard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I think next step will be to take it to my local indy shop to get it set up as I want it. The problem with it now is that its actually too easy to ride fast on the street and I have to ride much faster to get the sense of accomplishment, which really isn't much use at all on the street if I want to keep my license. I miss the little bit of struggle I had with it before.
 
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