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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Several comparos have stated the suspension on the FZ-09 is terrible. I just need some insight from real people and not magazine reporters. I am in Afghaistan for another month or so and plan on purchasing a new naked bike for daily use and getting my Honda CBR1000 as track only. Bikes I am looking at are Streetighter 848, New Monster 1200 (non-S), Speed Triple (non-R), Street Triple R, New BMW S1000R, and of course the FZ-09. Any feedback will be appreciated as I can not go into a dealer and test drive the above bikes until I get back.

-Dave
 

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Any of the bikes listed will have a better suspension IMO. At the factory settings, I found the suspension to be as horrible as described (I'm ~210 lbs). On the ride home I felt like I was on a pogo stick. I upped the preload both front and rear to just about maxed out, and dialed up the rebound as well, and it feels much better. I've only had 1 afternoon of riding on some pretty mild roads, but it felt night and day different. It's not the feel of my full Ohlins (with SS kit) of my Aprilia, but I don't expect that. From what I gather on here, dropping in new springs makes a huge difference for little money. There are some cost effective (relatively) solutions for the back as well. I'm going to ride as-is for now, as I'm converting my RSVR to full track duty, so my extra $$ is going that direction this winter. Next winter, I'll probably throw some money at the FZ for some higher $$ mods. The rest of the bike is great, and smiles per $$ is much better than anything out there. The motor is magic.

I did see the Monster 1200 in person last week, if you want a simple, clean bike, it's not it. To me it looks like a Streetfighter and Diavel had a go in the back room, not what I was looking for in a Monster (yes, I cross shoped a monster prior to the FZ).

Safe travels home, the last month is the LONGEST month of the tour.
 

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There are a lot of serious riders on this board who are mod freaks...and are used to riding performance maxed machines. I am a more casual rider, never been to the track, and I am over 200 lbs. I don't have the same gripes about the suspension. I am at fully hard on all settings. It's certainly rideable and safe, and I have plenty of fun on it...and its never done anything scary while riding...i am not riding it to its full potential though...still working on the last 1/4" of my tire's edge. Anything can be made better with money. I will probably upgrade in the spring...because why not. But upgrading the suspension is not a requisite imo
 

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Yep, unfortunately it is as bad as they say. The bike is not evil to ride but it doesn't feel right. Nick at Soltec got the suspension and fueling issue pretty much sort out. Fork springs are available and Penskee rear shock comes in 3 different flavors for 3 different budget. If you are on a budget, the ZX-10 and ZX-6 rear shock does fit and it's a great improvement over the stock shock.

All in all you can make the FZ09 a badass ride for less $$$ you will spend on other ride. The bike is not perfect but can easily be fixed and customize to your liking.
 

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First of all I'd like to say Thank You for your service to our country.

For comparison I'm 6 ft 185 lb's. The rear mono is ok, though I did have to do some adjusting to get it 'there'. The fronts are not so good especially on uneven road surfaces and under hard braking. To me the front never feel's 'planted'. The pogo stick term used above is an accurate description. What am I going to do about it? Well... at the moment nothing. I'm waiting on the weather to allow me more time in the saddle so that I can make that decision. If I had to venture a guess; At this point I think the rear mono will be fine for me but I'll likely be sinking some cash in the forks.
 

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I'm a new rider, and my confidence was eroded by the suspension. I simply didn't trust it over average size bumps (expansion lines, crappy road-work, deep manholes...). Once you factor out my lack of experience, I think my lack of confidence in the suspension was the next major factor in my wreck (details in the link in my sig). I've ordered front springs and a rear penske from stoltec for my replacement bike. The stock dunlops were my other big non-rider factor.
 

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Several comparos have stated the suspension on the FZ-09 is terrible. I just need some insight from real people and not magazine reporters. I am in Afghaistan for another month or so and plan on purchasing a new naked bike for daily use and getting my Honda CBR1000 as track only. Bikes I am looking at are Streetighter 848, New Monster 1200 (non-S), Speed Triple (non-R), Street Triple R, New BMW S1000R, and of course the FZ-09. Any feedback will be appreciated as I can not go into a dealer and test drive the above bikes until I get back.

-Dave
Why do people keep trolling lopsided comparisons like this - it's ridiculous. How about comparing the FZ-09 to something closer to it's price range like the 50hp Ducati Monster 696 (ONLY $9,295). And be ready to adjust that Desmo valve system every 7,500 miles instead of every 26,600, and check the cost of the insurance. From Triumph the Street Triple R is $9,999 - so the closest comparison would be the Triumph America at $8,299. From BMW you're comparing the $15,150 S100R? Compare it to the $7,850 G650 GS.

You plan on getting your CBR100RR as a track bike only? You're in Afghanistan for another month or so - you don't know exactly how many days you have left? I'm sorry, but this post just screams BULLSHIT!
 

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Folks keep wanting to compare the FZ-09 to much more expensive bikes. Got 1400 mi. on mine, weigh 145 lbs., ride it pretty hard on warm days, suspension is fine.
 

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Its specced for 150 pound riders give and take 15 pounds imho

anything out of the range and yeehaw~ good luck~

fork oil change and springs is cheap as heck , so is ZX shocks
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Why do people keep trolling lopsided comparisons like this - it's ridiculous. How about comparing the FZ-09 to something closer to it's price range like the 50hp Ducati Monster 696 (ONLY $9,295). And be ready to adjust that Desmo valve system every 7,500 miles instead of every 26,600, and check the cost of the insurance. From Triumph the Street Triple R is $9,999 - so the closest comparison would be the Triumph America at $8,299. From BMW you're comparing the $15,150 S100R? Compare it to the $7,850 G650 GS.

You plan on getting your CBR100RR as a track bike only? You're in Afghanistan for another month or so - you don't know exactly how many days you have left? I'm sorry, but this post just screams BULLSHIT!
Never said I was in the military man. I work for the DoD and do short 4-6 month stints out here every year or so. I am sorry but I am not going to post on a forum the exact date I leave and I am sure you can understand why. Funny how how every legitimate motorcycle magazine/site pits the FZ-09 with the bikes that I mentioned becasue they are all naked bikes. Where did you get that price for the S1000R if dealers do not even have it, dealer tells me it is going to be around 13k? 7.5k miles for valve system, try 15k-18k miles now a days, this is 2014. Many people have track only bikes because converting from track to street is a pain in the ass everytime, one member in this same topic mentioned he has a track only Aprilia RSV4.
 

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When you assume, you make an ass out of u and me. Don't let it bother you.

If you weigh over 150lbs with gear on, the suspension sucks. They are using bare bones units on the bikes. With that said, I am 205 with gear, double clicker Penske, stiffer fork springs with 10W oil. The bike is light years better now for around $1000. Brake lines and pads are another must, which set me back another $200. I am still in for less than the competition with a motor like no other. My other bike is a CBR954RR, so the bar to reach was pretty high for me.
 

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For the $ the 09 is the best deal.
The 09 can be made to match or better the others in your list suspenion wise for less than the difference in cost.
Compared to crap suspension that came on bikes like SVs, Bandits, ER6s, FZ6....it is about the same crap.
The suspension may be getting worse reviews because the engine is so good it makes it more noticeable.
An FZ09 with the motor replaced by lets say a sv650/dl650 engine would still be an ok bike with bad but not dangerous suspension.
 

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I weigh 215lb with gear and didn't find it horrible. But I had stock suspension on my sv650 so this feels like an upgrade. Everyone has told me that I don't know what I'm missing, that maybe true but I don't try to ride my bikes on the street like I would on a track. For that purpose the suspension isn't that bad imo.

I'll likely still upgrade because I want to know the difference but after my first long 90 mile ride yesterday, I think for an average Joe motorcycle rider the claims regarding the suspension are a bit nit picky.

It's important to keep in mind people who review these bikes have to subjective, it's their job, and while a lot of members here will tell you it sucks as well, it comes down to your personal riding style and preference.

It's just like the whole break in thread. Some people are passionate about a certain method while others do it differently. It comes down to what you want to tolerate vs. Not.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk
 

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Lots of opinions here.
To add mine to the mix, I would say the following:
If you are going to ride it on smooth roads, if you do not ride aggressively, if you keep the tire pressure around 31 lbs. and if you weigh less than 180 lbs. or so with gear, you probably won't have to do anything.
Aggressive riding and frequent fast riding over crappy roads and/or heavier weight will require suspension improvements.
My 2 cents...
 

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I weigh 215lb with gear and didn't find it horrible. But I had stock suspension on my sv650 so this feels like an upgrade. Everyone has told me that I don't know what I'm missing, that maybe true but I don't try to ride my bikes on the street like I would on a track. For that purpose the suspension isn't that bad imo.

I'll likely still upgrade because I want to know the difference but after my first long 90 mile ride yesterday, I think for an average Joe motorcycle rider the claims regarding the suspension are a bit nit picky.

It's important to keep in mind people who review these bikes have to subjective, it's their job, and while a lot of members here will tell you it sucks as well, it comes down to your personal riding style and preference.

It's just like the whole break in thread. Some people are passionate about a certain method while others do it differently. It comes down to what you want to tolerate vs. Not.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

so, is the bike suspensions are good for people that weights between 150-180 lbs. The cons for the suspension is that is is bouncy or stiff Sorry, i am just trying to figure everyone post out.
 

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sorry myfuturebike, my post might have rambled on without giving you a concrete opinion.

Basically my opinion of the suspension is likely different from the norm (the norm which is the suspension is inadequate for many with a riding weight of 170lb+ - or those who ride very aggressively).

Every review I've seen, guys are beating on the bike hard, popping wheelies and twisting around corners in canyons of CA.

I ride in NJ where the best "canyon" we have is an untouched pothole the DOT forgot to repair because they were too busy shutting down the GW bridge for a "traffic study" :)

Roads here are fun but they are not like california, in addition, i dont ride them like i'm on a closed race track. I rarely go more than 20mph over the speed limit, and i tend to ride more conservatively vs. dragging my knee down on every turn - i ride to have fun.

I'm also not an engineer (like many who post on here are) nor do i have an extensive knowledge of bikes, i just like riding them and i do my best to mod things on my bike within my tinkering capabilities. I also tend to deal with most things vs. pay a lot of money to fix them. And lastly, my only other bike of comparison is a yamaha bolt cruiser (not even in the same ballpark) and my old SV650 with stock suspension that i sold for this - (the FZ suspension compared to this bike is night and day better). Other guys on here have had extensive bike collections and a much more diverse pallette to offer a different opinion on the suspension.

With the caveats listed above, i think the stock suspension is tolerable. If you read the above and find yourself in disagreement with either how i ride, the area in which i ride, or my technical expertise, you may want to listen to the others opinions on here (i.e. Stoltec, DNGDOUG,Marthy) regarding how they feel the stock suspension is - the consesus among these experienced riders is to change it.

So i would advise you to consider how you ride, where you ride, and your level of tolerance and make a decision based on the opinions noted here on what you feel is the right decision.

At the end of the day, the bike is dirt cheap, worst case scenario you ride it and find the suspension inadequate and someone here can hook you up with new springs and rear shock for less than the price differential of the FZ vs. what it would cost if you bought say a used supersport or exotic naked.

Everyone can give you an opinion here, but until you ride it, you're not going to know for certain if it's truly necessary.

Just my 2 cents
 

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I'm 200lbs in full gear. The front is under sprung IMHO for me, but the rear shock is terrible.

The adjustability of the rear shock is very limited. I didn't even try to set the proper sag in the back with that shock because at my weight I don't think it was possible. With the ramped preload adjuster you don't have much preload to play with. Also on spirited rides on bumpy roads you could feel a difference in the damping between the beginning of the ride and the end. The shock just can't take it for too long.

I haven't touched the forks yet but I do have springs ready to go. I'm just torn between the gp piston kit and the full cartridge set up.

For the rear I currently have the zx6 shock in there and its a big improvement even with the eight year old, who knows how many miles shock I installed.

The bottom line is that you can throw money at the suspension and this is one really special machine!

Daniel


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This right here. Suspension is absolutely fixable. For way less, $3K less, than an S100RR you can have a phenomenal bike. The motor is the best. period. For another $2K on top of the $8K MSRP you can have arguably one of the meanest street bikes out there. It is an outright hooligan machine. I love mine and its flaws just give me a chance to get shit under my nails and grease on my face. I'm not sure it will ever be a track monster, but I'll be damned if it does make me giggle like a 13 year old school girl at a slumber party.

When you assume, you make an ass out of u and me. Don't let it bother you.

If you weigh over 150lbs with gear on, the suspension sucks. They are using bare bones units on the bikes. With that said, I am 205 with gear, double clicker Penske, stiffer fork springs with 10W oil. The bike is light years better now for around $1000. Brake lines and pads are another must, which set me back another $200. I am still in for less than the competition with a motor like no other. My other bike is a CBR954RR, so the bar to reach was pretty high for me.
 
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