Suspension nerds

I came across this design in my hard drive this weekend.

Back in 2004, I was elbow deep in suspension nerding. I was riding my sportbikes hard and tearing through tires. I probably had my forks apart twice a month for a year or so. The rear shock also. I was learning a lot.

Of course, I like to get things on paper as I learn. This is the result. I had looked into shim folding, port sizes, and how fluid moves at high speed through as system. I learned a lot about oil. I figured out that low speed adjusters needed to be parabolically shaped long before others starting talking about it.

I was trying to have these valves machined by a friend with a dyno and some top pro AMA riders. This kind of stuff is all nice until it jumps off the desk and hits the ground, then it needs real measurement and testing. That wasn’t coming together so the project went to mothballs. It was a shame as the valves still look great.

The best lesson of all my learning….good tires and correct springs with adequate rebound damping are the greatest components of all. Fancy shim stacks can never make up for these parts being wrong.