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Setting the proper preload for the rear suspension

Scout70

New member
You guys need to read the owners manual—the section in the back. It specifically says 8 turns if you weigh 100 kilograms (220 pounds). Maybe a little more for fuel and any luggage.

I weight 220. I used a felt pen to make a mark at the 12 o’clock position and gave it 8 turns. Big difference in ride.

typical guy approach to not read the instructions!
 

Moxie

New member
Nice article, I checked my preload and it was indeed all the way counter clockwise (shipping position) I weight 220 lb and with fuel approx. 24 lbs. set it at 7 rotations clockwise, bike rides much better now, thanks for posting, dealer should have caught that!
 

Gaylord Poe

Active member
Premium Member
Nice article, I checked my preload and it was indeed all the way counter clockwise (shipping position) I weight 220 lb and with fuel approx. 24 lbs. set it at 7 rotations clockwise, bike rides much better now, thanks for posting, dealer should have caught that!
Yes they should've but in fairness they were probably, like the rest of us, simply waiting on the shop service manual to become available. LOL
 

Black Dog

Well-known member
You guys need to read the owners manual—the section in the back. It specifically says 8 turns if you weigh 100 kilograms (220 pounds). Maybe a little more for fuel and any luggage.

I weight 220. I used a felt pen to make a mark at the 12 o’clock position and gave it 8 turns. Big difference in ride.

typical guy approach to not read the instructions!
Instructions? We don't need no stinking instructions.
 

Gaylord Poe

Active member
Premium Member
You guys need to read the owners manual—the section in the back. It specifically says 8 turns if you weigh 100 kilograms (220 pounds). Maybe a little more for fuel and any luggage.

I weight 220. I used a felt pen to make a mark at the 12 o’clock position and gave it 8 turns. Big difference in ride.

typical guy approach to not read the instructions!
Yep those settings are in the owners manual but in fairness to Moxie, there're are a lot of other things in the owners manual too, like tire pressure, and fluid levels, and other very basic things that should be addressed before delivery by the dealer.
 

Black Dog

Well-known member
Yep those settings are in the owners manual but in fairness to Moxie, there're are a lot of other things in the owners manual too, like tire pressure, and fluid levels, and other very basic things that should be addressed before delivery by the dealer.
As you said Basic things covered in the owners manual
 
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David R

Active member
I ordered a new fully adjustable Progressive rear shock and spring.

Waiting delivery.

Should ride better

Uses my original spring adjuster.

Like others, I put a piece of red tape so I could count the turns.

David
 

Black Dog

Well-known member
David,
Which spring & shock did you order from progressive?Did you get the same length as oem?


Thx &

Regards,Tom
The length of the "shock" can not be altered to any significant degree, contact with the driveshaft and frame would result.Diveshaft clearanceJPG.JPG
 

enzo5000

Well-known member
David,
Which spring & shock did you order from progressive?Did you get the same length as oem?


Thx &

Regards,Tom
It's an outfit called Black-T. They make a Stage 2, Stage 3 and Stage 4 shock for the BMW R18.



 

Black Dog

Well-known member
The damping characteristic are different but, the actual suspension travel is the same, confined by the physical dimension of the motorcycle.
 
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D

Deleted member 770

Guest
Yeah,a little more travel would be nice.Hopefully the aftermarket will catch up.


Regards,Tom
 

Gr8adv

Member
You guys need to read the owners manual—the section in the back. It specifically says 8 turns if you weigh 100 kilograms (220 pounds). Maybe a little more for fuel and any luggage.

I weight 220. I used a felt pen to make a mark at the 12 o’clock position and gave it 8 turns. Big difference in ride.

typical guy approach to not read the instructions!
Forget the manual. Do it yourself properly and measure.
 

Moxie

New member
Nice overview, mine was set at the shipping position, fully counter clockwise - rotated 7 turns clockwise 220 lb rider 30 lbs fuel, rear fender up approx 1.5 inches, ride was much improved. Can't believe the BMW dealer missed this at set-up!
 
Many of the early reviews and many of the first customers have complained about the R18 having a very harsh ride and easily scraping the pegs. This is not indicative of a design flaw on the R18, but a procedural miss by BMW to properly document the unpacking and setup procedures for the customer. During shipping, the rear shock preload is placed in "Shipping" position. That means the adjustment of the rear shock is turned anti-clockwise until it hits the stop. In this position you are basically sitting on the rubber bump-stop on the shock with little to no spring action. During shipping it keeps the bike from bouncing around. The manual mentions setting the preload, but it appears that none of the dealers have been doing that. I have created a chart that gives a breakdown of preload from minimum adjustment (0 Turns) to Max Adjustment (26 Turns).

The process is very easy: With a 13mm 6-Point socket, turn the adjuster anti-clockwise until it stops. Slowly rotate the adjuster clockwise until you feel it engage the spring perch (you will feel slight resistance). This is position "0" Continue turning clockwise until you reach the desired preload based on the chart I created.

I hope this helps everyone out.
This is really helpful. Thank you. I will check this on collecting my new Classic in a week or two. I shall also check the demo if I get time to ride that again as the suspension was very unforgiving on rough city roads. From zero I will only need to wind on 4 to 5 turns but hopefully that will help.
 

Atl-Cruiser

New member
Many of the early reviews and many of the first customers have complained about the R18 having a very harsh ride and easily scraping the pegs. This is not indicative of a design flaw on the R18, but a procedural miss by BMW to properly document the unpacking and setup procedures for the customer. During shipping, the rear shock preload is placed in "Shipping" position. That means the adjustment of the rear shock is turned anti-clockwise until it hits the stop. In this position you are basically sitting on the rubber bump-stop on the shock with little to no spring action. During shipping it keeps the bike from bouncing around. The manual mentions setting the preload, but it appears that none of the dealers have been doing that. I have created a chart that gives a breakdown of preload from minimum adjustment (0 Turns) to Max Adjustment (26 Turns).

The process is very easy: With a 13mm 6-Point socket, turn the adjuster anti-clockwise until it stops. Slowly rotate the adjuster clockwise until you feel it engage the spring perch (you will feel slight resistance). This is position "0" Continue turning clockwise until you reach the desired preload based on the chart I created.

I hope this helps everyone out.
It absolutely helped me out! I did 20 turns, and it rides like a whole new bike. Honestly, this was the only thing I wasn’t satisfied with. And, my Mustang seat has been ordered with a backrest. This really was a game changer and so simple to do. I added a few pictures for everyone to get a visual.

Thanks for the tip!
 

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