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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just purchased an 07 GS. Being winter, I won't pick it up until April.

I have been riding an R1150R for the last 3.5 years, so I'm used to stiffer suspension and a different ride altogether.
While sitting on the GS I noticed the suspension seems a little softer (not that this is a bad thing, and it makes sense for a bike with longer travel and more of a dual purpose).

What suspension setting are some of you using? Pre-load full in? Half way?
Damping 1-2 turns out? I know this depends on the rider/preference, but looking for some general settings that are used on this bike.

I'm a lightweight (150 lbs, or, 68 kg) and ride mainly solo. I also do a lot of 2-up riding with my wife, who is also a super-lightweight.

Cheers,
 

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Welcome and congrats on the move to a GS. I too just went from an R this summer to a GS. I have not messed too much with the suspension yet, but started at the factory recommended settings and then tightened everything up by a turn or two. I marked these down so I have a record of what I have been riding at as I do ride two up sometimes and have to change the setting. I weigh in at 200 and the factory plus a couple seem fine to me. I think you will like the GS. I actually feel like I get a sportier ride out of it over my R.
 

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I don't expect two bikes that come off the assembly line next to each other to have the same suspension settings. I'm not sure I even trust that the settings will work in exactly the same manner. Then there are all the people that play with the settings in the dealer's showroom.

Anyroad, I find it best to measure and set the settings appropriately. All it takes is a tape measure and a friend. On my '05 the rear is spec'd at 200 mm. I, with the help of a friend, measured from the rear axle to a point directly above it with the bike on the center stand and the rear wheel off the ground. I measured a second time between the same two points, this time off of the center stand with me sitting on the bike with all my gear. Rear preload was adjusted so the difference between those two readings was about 66 mm (1/3 of the total travel). For me, on my bike, with my gear, and my panniers loaded the way I usually load them that amounted to about 3 turns of preload.

My front is spec'd at 190 mm total travel. I prefer a little less than 1/3 on the front so looked for a difference of about 57 mm between the front wheel off the ground and me on the bike with all of my gear. The 2nd notch from the bottom was OK for me.

Finally I set the rear damping by having my friend hold the bike while I pushed down on the luggage rack to compress the spring then let go. As shipped to me the rear end came up slowly -- it was over damped. I adjusted it so the rear end returned to its starting position quickly, without extra bounces. I like my rebound a little soft, so actually adjusted it so it would return a bit higher than the starting position.

That was with the stock suspension as found on an '05 bike. When I put Ohlins on the bike I had to do the same thing again (only got to adjust the front rebound damping, too). Ideally I'd do it a third time fully packed for a trip and note the settings so I could, at least on the rear, easily go back and forth.

Oh.... after doing all of that all you've done is set a starting point for fine tuning. Ride and tweak until you get things the way you like them.

// marc
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thx guys. Points noted and I'll start tweaking when I pick it up in April. Same basic theorys as on my R. Until then I'll live vicariously through this and other websites and magazines.

Cheers,
 

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I rode mine in the stock setting for 2 years. Then I adjusted both front and rear kinda just tightened everything up, then forgot for a while. Then I loosened everything up again and it did "feel" softer. I ride both on and off road and with passenger every once and a while. I increase the dampening on the rear when I ride with a passenger. The preload I leave in a very neutral position. That is about it. I am one of those guys who can ride anything, no matter how it is set up. I don't see dramatic differences with setup.
 

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For what it may be worth I was once shown a quick suspension adjustment tip for having a pillion aboard. Firstly, using the static sag method get the bike set up for yourself as you like it. Then note the position on the garage wall where the light shines. Then chuck the pillion on and any gear and check the light position again. The idea is to adjust the rear suspension to bring the light as close as possible to how it rides best with just the rider.

Also for what it is worth (this being said by someone who is a new gs owner) I noticed that off road the handling is greatly affected by the suspension. The BMW manual recommends adjusting the front setting to 9 clicks (instead of 1-3 on road) for off road, as well as firming the rear up the same. Try it out yourself.
 

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I just purchased an 07 GS. Being winter, I won't pick it up until April.

I have been riding an R1150R for the last 3.5 years, so I'm used to stiffer suspension and a different ride altogether.
While sitting on the GS I noticed the suspension seems a little softer (not that this is a bad thing, and it makes sense for a bike with longer travel and more of a dual purpose).

What suspension setting are some of you using? Pre-load full in? Half way?
Damping 1-2 turns out? I know this depends on the rider/preference, but looking for some general settings that are used on this bike.

I'm a lightweight (150 lbs, or, 68 kg) and ride mainly solo. I also do a lot of 2-up riding with my wife, who is also a super-lightweight.

Cheers,
The BMW manuals talk about 9 positions on the front shock spring. It appears to have only 5 notches, where are they getting the nine from?
 

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For what it may be worth I was once shown a quick suspension adjustment tip for having a pillion aboard. Firstly, using the static sag method get the bike set up for yourself as you like it. Then note the position on the garage wall where the light shines. Then chuck the pillion on and any gear and check the light position again. The idea is to adjust the rear suspension to bring the light as close as possible to how it rides best with just the rider.

Also for what it is worth (this being said by someone who is a new gs owner) I noticed that off road the handling is greatly affected by the suspension. The BMW manual recommends adjusting the front setting to 9 clicks (instead of 1-3 on road) for off road, as well as firming the rear up the same. Try it out yourself.
The front suspension on my 06 GS only has 5 positions. Where does BMW come up with 9?
 

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Hello. Which way you turn with the key the front suspension to increase the spring lenght for off road use? The manual says left but im confused. When i do it i see that the length is getting shorter.
 
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