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2020 R1250GSA HP 719 Billet
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Given that it only adjusts ride height at a stop, it's not what I would call "on the fly" adjustments but I assume more of an automatic adjustment at bike start-up for changes in [rider + passenger + luggage] total loaded weight to bring the bike back to an OEM selected ride height. But in the way BMW describe it, ESA also makes adjustments to damping and, seemingly magically also "spring rate" (See the detail here:
ESA & ESA II - technology in detail).

In any case, if one jiggers the sensor via this device, seems it might well be affecting more than just the ride height when damping changes are also involved. ie. maybe the sensor is affecting both spring pre-load and damping characteristics. In this case, it may have unintended and unpredictable consequences when the bike is put into more "dynamic" scenarios. .... I'd be a little leery of making this mod without a lot more info as to how the ESA programming works.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
That was one of my questions where I did not receive a response (on another thread). When in Auto mode, is the suspension set to its lowest height when at a stop?

No.
In auto mode the suspension is not set to it lowest at a stop that's what minimum does. It just maintains a preset height regardless of loading. The mod I originally posted lets you set that preset to a height that suits you.
 

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Has anyone looked to see if the factory linkage plastic cups are threaded to allow adjustment? If what the OP stated is true where a 3mm adjustment results in a 25mm ride height change, maybe shortening the threaded (if it is in fact threaded) rod 3 or 4 mm and threading the rod a little further down would allow the adjustment range needed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Has anyone looked to see if the factory linkage plastic cups are threaded to allow adjustment? If what the OP stated is true where a 3mm adjustment results in a 25mm ride height change, maybe shortening the threaded (if it is in fact threaded) rod 3 or 4 mm and threading the rod a little further down would allow the adjustment range needed.
Hi Lamby66,

I would be surprised if they are threaded because It would be more expensive to make them. A simpler method would be to mould the cups onto the end of the rod which is what I imagine they do. The only way to be sure is to take one apart, anybody want to sacrifice a link rod to find out?
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Given that it only adjusts ride height at a stop, it's not what I would call "on the fly" adjustments but I assume more of an automatic adjustment at bike start-up for changes in [rider + passenger + luggage] total loaded weight to bring the bike back to an OEM selected ride height. But in the way BMW describe it, ESA also makes adjustments to damping and, seemingly magically also "spring rate" (See the detail here:
ESA & ESA II - technology in detail).

In any case, if one jiggers the sensor via this device, seems it might well be affecting more than just the ride height when damping changes are also involved. ie. maybe the sensor is affecting both spring pre-load and damping characteristics. In this case, it may have unintended and unpredictable consequences when the bike is put into more "dynamic" scenarios. .... I'd be a little leery of making this mod without a lot more info as to how the ESA programming works.
Given that it only adjusts ride height at a stop, it's not what I would call "on the fly" adjustments but I assume more of an automatic adjustment at bike start-up for changes in [rider + passenger + luggage] total loaded weight to bring the bike back to an OEM selected ride height. But in the way BMW describe it, ESA also makes adjustments to damping and, seemingly magically also "spring rate" (See the detail here:
ESA & ESA II - technology in detail).

In any case, if one jiggers the sensor via this device, seems it might well be affecting more than just the ride height when damping changes are also involved. ie. maybe the sensor is affecting both spring pre-load and damping characteristics. In this case, it may have unintended and unpredictable consequences when the bike is put into more "dynamic" scenarios. .... I'd be a little leery of making this mod without a lot more info as to how the ESA programming works.


Hi dadamsinky,

Your statement “Given that it only adjusts ride height at a stop” is incorrect.

The dynamic ESA fitted to the R1250GS is very different to the previous version, the one you linked to, the suspension can be adjusted manually when stationary within defined limits but the real “magic” occurs when set to auto were it i constantly monitors all aspects of operation and makes both damping and ride height adjustments “on the fly” I.E. whilst in motion.

To explain better, in auto mode,if after riding my bike fully loaded I then stop and remove all the luggage when I get on the bike again it is noticeably higher, it is only after I have ridden a short distance that the height returns to it's preset level. The same happens in reverse, if I have been riding the bike solo with no luggage I then add luggage and my pillion hops aboard then the bike is lower until it has travelled a short distance when again it returns to the preset level. The only time I can see the suspension preload operating when stationary is if I manually place it in either low or high. (neither I now never use). The system is amazing in it’s operation and enables a really plush ride with none of the wallowing you would normally find on a softly sprung and/or damped bike

I personally do not worry about the "dynamic" scenarios because the suspension is still working within the range set by the BMW engineers having said that if after carrying out this mod you were to place the suspension in manual minimum mode instead of auto it would be more of a concern because the bike may then be to low and possibly outside those designed suspension limits, but the whole idea of the mod is so you never need to do that.

dadamsinky what settings do you use on your R1250GSA HP?
 

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Has anyone looked to see if the factory linkage plastic cups are threaded to allow adjustment? If what the OP stated is true where a 3mm adjustment results in a 25mm ride height change, maybe shortening the threaded (if it is in fact threaded) rod 3 or 4 mm and threading the rod a little further down would allow the adjustment range needed.
well to quote myself for others that might want to know....

I took off my linkage and attempted to unscrew the plastic ball sockets. I am not going to say for sure that they are NOT threaded, but I put as much force on them as I was comfortable doing and they did NOT unthread.

I did buy some ball joints and some threaded rod from the local ACE, and the modification worked perfectly (ish)!!

I will say one thing though, it seems the auto level system does not like to adjust upward.. I started with the bike in "Auto" adjusted to where I wanted it as a solo rider. I had a passenger get on and the Bike squatted down and did not automatically raise as I figured it would (sat for a about a min idling). went to "min" and the bike squatted down further (as expected) I then went from "Min" to "auto" with the passenger and the level did not rise after about 30 seconds of idling.. I went to "Max" and the bike raised instantly.. after going back to "Auto" the bike squatted to the same height as "auto" had when i was solo.

so, that all being said. I have no idea when or where the sample happens and when the preload adjustment rates change, but it sort of work from Max to Min at least.
 

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Ok so my friend did the mod. We took measurement in Auto Max and Min
He took 2 points on the bike and in Auto the bike stood at 570mm at Max it stood at 590mm and at minimum it stood at 550mm.
He put in the rod.....which was 3 mm shorter as the OP had suggested.
The bike dropped to 552ish mm in auto. The maximum and minimum stay the same. 550 and 590. That is the range of motion of the shock and that doesnt change even with shortening the linkage.
Lets see how it goes over the next few days....will load her up and take some more measurements.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Ok so my friend did the mod. We took measurement in Auto Max and Min
He took 2 points on the bike and in Auto the bike stood at 570mm at Max it stood at 590mm and at minimum it stood at 550mm.
He put in the rod.....which was 3 mm shortwe as the OP had suggested.
The bike dropped to 552ish mm in auto. The maximum and minimum stay the same. 550 and 590. That is the range of motion of the shock and that doesnt change even with shortening the linkage.
Lets see how it goes over the next few days....will load her up and take some more measurements.
Hi virkdoc,
Great post, my main concern after I did this mod was if the suspension was put in manual low mode making the bike far to low and reducing the amount of travel available possibly causing damage if say a pothole was hit at speed. Though I did not go into the detailed measurements you have done because my only need was to get a consistent ride height regardless of load. It was very interesting that you found the total max and minimums did not alter regardless of the link rod setting.

I had assumed that the link rod was the only means by which the control electronics knew the ride height and it probably is but after reading your post it made me wonder what would happen if the link rod failed ?

Then I though I could just be over analyzing all this and it may be as simple as the total max and minimum settings are just designed mechanically into the shock absorber assembly and all we are adjusting is the electronic preload collar just as you would with a manual shocker with a preload ring under or on top of the spring and if that link rod was to fail whatever setting prior to failure would probably be maintained till it was replaced but without the use of the auto adjust feature.

Who would have thought a simple less than £15.00 mod could have caused such interest?
Good fun though.
 

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The mod worked perfectly for me as well. I did not measure my heights but as you have noticed the minimum actually retracts the preload sleeve all the way into the shock and maximum extends the sleeve to what I think is a hard stop.

The preload does change the with the aldistment of the rod length, and does so very well, but it not all that consistent between loads and rides but is close enough, and is much closer to the minimum height than the maximum like it was when stock.

Asking about what that sensor would do if broken.. my guess is a error code as that has to be part of the stability control to monitor rear suspension travel and probably adjusts braking and throttle response accordingly, but that is a just my guess.
 

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Hi, I know i have only owned a BMW for 5 minutes but i’m a little sceptical as lowering the suspension hight can be done as easy as just changing the length of a rod at the cost of £16…… so why do BMW charge 1000’s
i‘m always open new ideas.
 

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Hi, I know i have only owned a BMW for 5 minutes but i’m a little sceptical as lowering the suspension hight can be done as easy as just changing the length of a rod at the cost of £16…… so why do BMW charge 1000’s
i‘m always open new ideas.
This mod only changes where the bike thinks it is during it's auto leveling preloading. It allows us to adjust the bike to have the preload (ride height) we want,not what BMW coded. This SHOULD be allowed electronically but this work around works well
 

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Many people would like a GS but shy away because of the size or height of the bike hopefully the following may help.



I own a 1250GS with lowered suspension/chassis, which of the 3 settings available high, auto, and minimum I ride in minimum mode all the time because I am 5’7” with an 28” inside leg.



This is OK until the bike is loaded with panniers and a passenger, it then sinks (sags?) much lower to the point that in full touring mode it is way too low. The ideal solution would be to use auto mode thus compensating for the extra weight but in that configuration it is too high to be comfortable/safe especially when fully loaded.



I noticed the height sensor link rod at the rear and though that adjusting it length may provide a solution. A quick search on eBay came up with a few possibilities. I settled on the one in the picture, it is designed to be use as an adjustable headlight levelling link rod for cars but happens to not only have the required length range but all the threads were the same as the original link rod.



The photo’s are self explanatory but if you do this be careful! to lower my bike 25mm (just over an inch) only took about 3mm of adjustment shorter than the original link rod.



I now leave the bike permanently in auto mode and the ride height is now comfortable for me regardless of load.



I hope this may be of help to anybody with a similar problem but the usual applies, you do this entirely at your own risk and I accept no responsibility whatsoever for any problems , damage, injuries etcetera that may occur as a result.



Stay safe.

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Great discovery and discussion. I am assuming since this mod reportedly LOWERS height in Auto and does not affect Min or Max, no variation of this mod could INCREASE height. Correct ?
 

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Great discovery and discussion. I am assuming since this mod reportedly LOWERS height in Auto and does not affect Min or Max, no variation of this mod could INCREASE height. Correct ?
Correct...the minimum and maximum limits are set. The shock will not move out of that range
 

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I know the parts will be more expensive, but what about getting a rod from a standard GS or a factory lowered GS as it will look more OEM than a generic threaded bolt
That will be just the rod with no adjustment. The advantage of the threaded rod is we can actually play with different height settings.
 
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