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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I haven't really taken the time to give an in depth review of the upgraded suspension components so here's my review.

Forks

In stock form the forks are adequate on smooth pavement. The rebound and compression settings are very sensitive. One click makes a huge difference. However, once the road get's bumpy they don't do a good job of absorbing the bumps. On smooth tracks and newly paved roads they don't become an issue but on bumpy roads traction can suffer as the front wheel will have a hard time staying in contact with the pavement.

I sent my forks off to Cogent Dynamics in North Carolina. I originally requested Race Tech internals but he recommended the Ohlins and offered that at a discount so I obliged. The kit was about $450 installed. The preload adjusters remain the same only affecting ride height since only new cartridges are installed and no PVC tubing was cut and placed in the tubes to compress the springs. My springs were upgraded from the stock 0.85 to 1.0 to accommodate my 195lb frame.

When riding at the track I noticed that I was able to use a wide range of fork travel on the brakes. Action was smooth and consistent and I could feel the tire working. I was very confident in the front end. The best part was that when I went out on track the ride was so good from the front that I didn't even pay attention to it. I totally forgot about it, it was THAT good. Any time you can ride and not give attention to something that means that it is working extremely well. I've ridden on $2,000 suspension back when I owned my Ducati race bike and TRUST ME these forks with the Ohlins internals are really just as good, even without the adjustable preload. If you can swing it, pull off your forks and send them out for the Ohlins kit. You will ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!


Rear Shock Absorber (Penske)

At first I was going to get the rear shock re-worked just like the forks but with only a $300 differential in price I decided to splurge and get the Penske 8983 remote reservoir for the rear suspension duties. Believe me when I tell you that this shock is about 100X better than the stock unit. YOU HAVE NOT RIDDEN THIS BIKE TO IT'S FULL POTENTIAL UNTIL YOU HAVE UPGRADED YOUR REAR SHOCK

This bike has soooo much more to offer than what it starts out with. In stock trim it's heavy handling albeit stable and doesn't track well over bumps. But get a rear shock on this thing and you can feel EVERYTHING the rear tire was doing. At Jennings I was easily able to identify the slick parts of the track because the suspension would help the tire to speak to me. For example, when I caught a nasty slide on Saturday, I softened up the Penske compression damping by 2 clicks. This helped give the tire just a little bit more compliance and it hooked up a lot better. Guys were nearly getting highsided on that part of the track and I was able to dial in the throttle smoothly and consistently because of the action of the suspension squatting a little bit more which took the load off of the tire. The stock suspension is so harsh that you can't dial in that needed "Softness" to help the tires work better. This is where the PENSKE WINS BIG!!!!!

You might be thinking that since you may not ride the track that you don't need to make a purchase like this but believe it or not the PENSKE is even more valuable for street riding especially when you ride in the rain or when you ride over something slick like oil or other fluids. I'm considering getting one for my street ZX-7R as soon as I can.

In the end, I was nearly dragging my elbow on the ZX-7R due to the confidence these suspension upgrades gave. A couple of guys complemented me on the track for my Lean Angle. They were surprised that a 500lb bike like the ZX-7R handled the way that it did. With a little setup the ZX-7R can hang with any bike in production in ANY type of corner.


Marvic Wheels

What do lightweight wheels have to do with suspension? Lighter wheels help the suspension to work better since less force is needed to keep the wheel in contact with the pavement. In addition the bike turns in MUCH faster.

How did the Marvic wheels improve my riding? Simple.
1) Line Choice: I was able to choose multiple lines in a corner instead of having to choose one type of line like I was doing before.

2) Flickable: The bike tipped into corners so fast that I actually starting pulling back to stop it from falling into the corner. It was almost scary how fast the bike wanted to dip.

3) Acceleration: The bike literally JUMPED off of the corners in comparison to last season.

4) Mid Corner Adjustments: With the stock wheels it was very hard to me to make mid-corner adjustments. With the Marvics I could actually change my line mid corner. If I started wide in a corner I could tighten up my line at will and get closer to the apex on neutral or cracked-open throttle.


In a perfect world I would recommend doing all three of these mods at the same time as I did but if you are unable to, then I recommend doing them in the following order.

Street Riding:
Forks -> Rear Shock -> Wheels

Track Riding
Wheels -> Rear Shock -> Forks




Take-Offs anyone? hahahahahha (No these won't be for sale. They're too shagged)

 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·

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Did you have the fork tubes re-coated/ chromed or left as is?

Do you have a side shot showing those sexy wheels?

Josh
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Did you have the fork tubes re-coated/ chromed or left as is?

Do you have a side shot showing those sexy wheels?

Josh
I was going to re-coat the fork tubes but he just polished them and smoothed them out to keep costs down.


Side shot? Ask and Ye shall receive. :smile

 

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Wow! That is a wicked color of blue you have there!

Now about that rear seat on a race bike... :)

Josh
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Wow! That is a wicked color of blue you have there!

Now about that rear seat on a race bike... :)

Josh

Code T-10 "Mitsubishi Bright Blue". :smile

Yeah the seat, I know. I like having a spare street bike though. One of these days I'll stop being cheap and order a cowl.
 

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I'm dying to do my suspension on my zx6r. I'm saving up money for it.

This write up was great and extremely helpfull. It's hard to dump that kinda money into something you haven't heard a personal review on.

Thank you for the info, ride safe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Nice side pic Turbo.
I noticed you aren't running frame sliders.....

Is it because you don't believe they help or don't want to cut the fairings?
I used to run sliders but I just don't like the look of them. Plus I feel like I'm programming my brain for a crash.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
+1

Sweet write up, Turbo. I'd love to get my front forks reworked like you had done to yours, seems like a decent investment.
Yeah, probably the best mod anyone can do in my humble opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'm dying to do my suspension on my zx6r. I'm saving up money for it.

This write up was great and extremely helpfull. It's hard to dump that kinda money into something you haven't heard a personal review on.

Thank you for the info, ride safe.
You can't go wrong. Go for it! :crazyloco
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
If you're still on the fence about buying a rear shock, think of it this way:

Imagine you're sitting at the dinner table and you start to fool around balancing your chair on it's last two legs. Suddenly you start to fall backwards but you catch it just in time and you don't fall. That's how a good rear shock feels when it saves you from losing traction and crashing.

I once heard this analogy from David Drebber (AMA announcer back in the day) and I feel it perfectly describes the sensation you get.
 

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If you're still on the fence about buying a rear shock, think of it this way:

Imagine you're sitting at the dinner table and you start to fool around balancing your chair on it's last two legs. Suddenly you start to fall backwards but you catch it just in time and you don't fall. That's how a good rear shock feels when it saves you from losing traction and crashing.

I once heard this analogy from David Drebber (AMA announcer back in the day) and I feel it perfectly describes the sensation you get.
Will the "Piggy-Back" Penske fit the P models with no clearance issues? I don't want to lose my undertail by going with a remote reservoir as my turn signals are integrated into my Undertail.

I'm seriously considering sending my forks off next winter for re-valving, adding the Penske rear shock, and adding front and rear wave rotors (They will be on my Christmas List!!!!!!!) :crazyloco

Also, what size jets are you running, and what pilot screw settings? FYI, I ride on the street, blast backroads, and take about 5-6 overnight road trips a year with my club.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Will the "Piggy-Back" Penske fit the P models with no clearance issues? I don't want to lose my undertail by going with a remote reservoir as my turn signals are integrated into my Undertail.

I'm seriously considering sending my forks off next winter for re-valving, adding the Penske rear shock, and adding front and rear wave rotors (They will be on my Christmas List!!!!!!!) :crazyloco

Also, what size jets are you running, and what pilot screw settings? FYI, I ride on the street, blast backroads, and take about 5-6 overnight road trips a year with my club.
The Piggyback should fit with no problem. I may get that one too for my other ZX7R.

I'm not sure about the Jet sizes. I didn't work on my carbs but I'll find out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Will the "Piggy-Back" Penske fit the P models with no clearance issues? I don't want to lose my undertail by going with a remote reservoir as my turn signals are integrated into my Undertail.

I'm seriously considering sending my forks off next winter for re-valving, adding the Penske rear shock, and adding front and rear wave rotors (They will be on my Christmas List!!!!!!!) :crazyloco

Also, what size jets are you running, and what pilot screw settings? FYI, I ride on the street, blast backroads, and take about 5-6 overnight road trips a year with my club.

One other thing! Don't forget to do the gearing. -1 front and +3 in the rear. You'll still be good for a genuine 150mph and you'll have the acceleration of a 1000cc up until about 120mph (or pretty close to it). :smile No more getting pulled by 600s. You may have to lengthen your chain. I went from 110 links to 112 and run it towards the 2nd indicator from the edge of the swingarm.
 

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One other thing! Don't forget to do the gearing. -1 front and +3 in the rear. You'll still be good for a genuine 150mph and you'll have the acceleration of a 1000cc up until about 120mph (or pretty close to it). :smile No more getting pulled by 600s. You may have to lengthen your chain. I went from 110 links to 112 and run it towards the 2nd indicator from the edge of the swingarm.
That is exactly what i have been looking for. I was thinking of going just 2 up in the rear, but that sounds good.

What RPM do you run at about 75 mph with this would you say? Curious because I spend a lot of time on the freeway doing 65-80mph.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Price and Supplier for the rear Penske shock?
I sent my stock shock to Cogent Dynamics and he sent the measurements/specifications to PENSKE in PA who dropshipped the shock to my door. $769 plus shipping.
 
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