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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-02-2005, 08:40 PM Thread Starter
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3 questions

Hey, I've been reading up on motorcycles and there's a lot of jargon out there I don't quite know. I'm riding a 04 ZX6-R and would like to be somewhat educated on ZX6-R's so here's my questions:

What's a slipper clutch?

What does "closer gear ratios" mean? How is that beneficial that gears 3+ are closer?

And what are pre-load dampeners for?

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-23-2005, 06:40 AM
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With a normal (Non-slipper) clutch you have to blip the throttle to match the RPMs when you downshift. If you just engage the clutch without rev-matching it will jerk the rear wheel which is bad. A slipper clutch doesn't engage as soon as you release the clutch lever (it "slips") and brings the RPMs up without jerking the rear wheel, and you don't have to rev match. Its not really necessary since you can do it yourself, but I guess it gives you one less thing to think about.

Closer gear ratios mean the gears are "shorter". Shorter gears mean they have a higher ratio, giving better acceleration but limiting top speed. Taller gears have a lower ratio, meaning a higher top speed is possible but with slower acceleration. So if the top 3 gears are "shorter" you won't have as high of a top speed (i can't see why a begginner would even need to go above 150 anyways), but you will accelerate through the top gears faster.

Preload dampers i'm not really sure about, i'm a begginner myself. I think its an adjustable thing in the suspension. You set your pre-load to match your specific weight. Like if you're heavier than what the factory sets it at (i think most of them set it for a 150 pound person) you make the pre-load stiffer so it doesnt sag down too much, or set it stiffer if you're riding 2 up. If you're lighter than 150 you soften it up a bit.

Last edited by PTskater; 11-23-2005 at 06:43 AM.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 04:16 PM Thread Starter
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makes sense

Thanks for the replies. In being a new rider I'm reading up all these things on bikes and most of it is bike jargon to me but all of that makes sense.

I heard the new '05 ZX6r has a slipper clutch which is why I was wondering but I'm not having any problems with matching RPM'S...more keeping the RPM'S down in city limits
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 06:24 PM
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Quick on on your three questions. First of all when it comes to a slipper clutch Vs regular clutch most of us have been using a regular clutch since way back in early 1900 of m/cing days. So thought my three sportbikes are NOT with the very latest fad being a "slipper" clutch then like others I have done okay & so will you as a newbie.

A close ratio basically means from first to 6th or top gear is closer then a standard ratio which is nice on a sportbike, but not what they prefer on Cruisers or regular riding position bikes.

The words of "preload", "rebound", & "compression" did not become avaliable till sometime into the sportbike days in the 90s & I note some newer bikes are NOT offering this on front & rear end suspensions for MOST do not understand what it all means let alone know how to use it. Just picking two would be the Suzy SV-650 or 650s or the other love of so many being the Yamaha FZ6.

Go to "How do I" section & look at the "Suspension Timing Guide" which I hope will be made a "sticky" as so many worry over said words. Most will not know how to make the modifications to some getting way out of line. Reason makers are beginning to realize this is a cost factor they could have skipped, due to lack of understand or the errors in trying to do it. Reason some of the attractive but not overly costly bikes are with a pre-set for their front forks & a few small modifications to the rear shock.

So for a newbie the last one will probably not be touched unless someone knows exactly what it all means & what can go wrong if you fool around with said adjustments if they are on your bike.

I have been in the m/c world for 59 yrs & done a lot of modifications to the suspension systems even if said adjustments were not avaliable in the earlier years. Basically I find what the factory set up on my '97 Yamaha YZF600R & .00 Honda 929 or '03 Honda 954 have been left alone. After all the last two bikes take me around the bends like they had their own rails. The 600r suspension is a bit on the soft side so upped the three a bit & even a bit more on the rebound as I feel the rear shock is close to being gone while the front could use from four to an additional four as I ride the bikes hard & after 8 yrs a bit more rebound coud be used. Still remember I have been making changes on forks & suspension since way back in '48.
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