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The simplest thing to go by is the overall length of the spring from the top of the tender to the bottom of the main spring. As a baseline mine is 17 3/4” in the front and 19 3/8 in the rear. That has mine at 14” clearance in the front and14.5” in the rear. That however is with a loaded cargo box, bed rails and the weight and thickness of skid plates.
Those without that are going to need less preload up front to get a balanced rake. Maybe only a 18.5” free spring length.
On the rear your going to be stuck with what ever it gives you. I have no preload on it at all so without skids I’d be at 15” clearance and that’s not taking into account the weight of skids and cargo box. So really it may be 15.5”. So I guess one may need a 17 3/4” free spring length up front to try to match that height within an inch! Just have to experiment. They came with no instructions or suggestions!
 

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So how did they change the ride,for the better I hope?
I only took it for a quick spin. Haven’t had time to test it in the real world yet. My main reason for doing it was ride height due to my skids and rack system. My initial impression driving on and off the trailer ramp to settle springs for measurements was that it felt stiffer not plusher. Taking it on a short run in some small bumps it sure didn’t offend me at all but I’ll give a report later.
 
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2021 Yamaha RMAX 2 XT-R 1000
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This may help for preload adjustment, from the Bandit FAQ on there website.

 

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Front OEM jacked up standard factory setting.
6C8F7BF2-F3DD-476D-942A-8BD784DF8E5F.jpeg


Front Bandit jacked up, no load, and 12 turns of compression from zero preload which is what it took to get to Zero preload when backing off from OEM standard setting.
03961CB9-5850-4E8C-981E-6517B2237950.jpeg


Both springs side by side and wire diameter differences as well! No wonder it was compressed. It had no where to go it’s so short! The 4 seat has a much longer tender spring up front!
054D7F92-773C-4501-B696-CFEAB1D29DAF.jpeg

430FFE34-D6AB-48E6-8183-FB27FA980CD7.jpeg
9E2EA4E3-1EE6-4258-8377-E0AD04673DA0.jpeg


There’s just no way to use old references as any kind of guide!
Rear OEM spring jacked up unloaded. Standard factory setting.
ED7ABC86-47B9-4B53-9CFA-E20EE46873E7.jpeg


Rear BANDIT jacked up unloaded and 6 turns preload which was what it took to back off and slack the OEM spring from the standard setting.
370BE377-578D-465B-9206-84EC0F6A8F01.jpeg


Side by side. Wire diameter difference was the same!
AEC3B0D2-BC5B-45FF-B712-72B9E012B524.jpeg


Based on the length difference alone, the overall free spring length unloaded will be longer on the front and shorter on the back from what the owner manual suggests to achieve similar results. Obvious different spring rates will also affect the result as well as one’s personal preference on ride quality, ride height and weight added to the car! The distance from the the head of the shock to the top of the adjustment nut also become irrelevant to OEM measurements!
I suggest starting with zero preload in the rear, (meaning bring the adjustment nut down till it contacts the spring and then go one full turn more so that there will be no slack or looseness in the springs at full extension) and 25 full turns of compression in the front, then settle the suspension, take measurements and go from there. I started with the same amount of preload turns front and rear as it took to unload the OEM springs and I ended up 3.5” higher in the back than the front, with the suspension settled by moving the car. Also bear in mind if the front is to low and you add preload and raise it, you will also be losing a little in the rear at the same time without even messing with the rear.
After drving it some and adding my headache rack back on I’m sure I’ll tweak it a little more till I’m happy.
 

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Thank you for all the explanations-I am understanding it a lot better. I know what zero preload is now and how to adjust them-no need for a compressor tool-agreed. I put my factory helper spring back on for now(I only took off the front driver's side) as I want to drive it again and get the factory base height of the machine and then I'll have something to compare it to and go from there. I need the machine for this Saturday and am sure I am going to be spending a lot of time adjusting the spring load when I decide to swap the helper springs. I don't ride much in winter even with the soft enclosure so I will probably tackle this project in spring when things get warmer. I want to be able to drive it around inbetween adjustments and add my weight back into the machine when I measure the height. I'm pretty anal when it comes to things and I can imagine after I get into it, I will definitely spend more time on it than what is actually necessary-lol.
 

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@Budro2, great write up, good info!
 

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Good call! I think base line numbers are important, otherwise we really don’t have anything to go on. Later on if you add weight it’s really nice to change the ride height back by just turning the spring and nut together. Don’t even have to remove the tires.
I expect if one loses ride height with added weight and add necessary preload to get it back it will still ride about the same since more weight means a plusher more boaty ride. At least that was my experience already when I added the full amount of suggested preload to the stock springs after adding the weight of skids and cargo.
 

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Lots of good theories on why they are fully compressed. Why are the front and rear different? Seems the theory of following the terrain would apply to both front and rear?
Front and rear have different travel numbers as well as the back being designed to haul 600 pounds of cargo so spring lengths and rates can’t be equal.
 

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@Jimbo, Did about 40 miles this afternoon of mixed terrain. A bit of crawling but mostly faster stuff with some whoops and a lot of the smaller rocky stuff at faster speeds.
I can definitely say the ride quality is an improvement. A little less harsh, definitely still plush in the crawling scenarios and for sure better in the back end as far as whoops or getting a little airborne. Less buck! No question now when your front tires hit a rock step 6-10”, you don’t feel that same harshness. It feels more like it soaks it up. I even put the 14 psi back in the tires before testing. This is all on the soft Shock settings.
I did try the firm setting for the first time today and also tried firm up front and soft in the rear. Neither of those settings were offensive to me either but I still prefer full soft the most. I really like that plush boaty ride but it handles great like that, even coming over a pretty good water bar sideways at 35-40 mph. Just soaks it up and doesn’t feel like your fighting the car at all.
Its a good cheap up grade for the 2 seat. Not sure it would be worth it for the four seat after seeing the tender springs in person on one at the dealer. I’m not going to say it’s OMG what an amazing difference, but it is an improvement at the same time getting better clearance. That’s a big deal to me because I believe all lift kits come at a compromise in some ride quality and this is the opposite on this machine.
For the money it’s worth every penny to me, even if it’s only for 3000-4000 miles. Honestly it will suit my riding for life but I’m pretty certain within a year or two Shock Therapy will have a full spring kit available for this that can be customized for the weight of cargo hauled etc. Around that time the shocks could use some servicing and I’ll be ready to drop some cash for a real duel spring package. I’m sure that’s when I’d say wow that’s a huge change.
Meanwhile I’ve accomplished my goal of full protection, cargo, clearance, and even a bit better ride. My dream has been this do all machine with 15” clearance and once I wear out these tires and get 32s I’ll have it without cranking down the preload more. I also think I’m going to like the simplicity of the quick Shock adjustment. I’m pretty sure when I get it loaded down to go camping I’ll be able to just click the backend to firm or hard and not feel like I’m driving the Tuna Boat!
Also I did notice a bit more roll when I’d jerk the wheel back and forth in the beginning, which makes sense but it’s very minimal and when just ripping and driving the next 3 hours I didn’t even think about it. It’s not anything like when we first disconnected sway bars on previous models. If it came stock like this no one would say “ what about that body roll! “
 

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@Jimbo, Did about 40 miles this afternoon of mixed terrain. A bit of crawling but mostly faster stuff with some whoops and a lot of the smaller rocky stuff at faster speeds.
I can definitely say the ride quality is an improvement. A little less harsh, definitely still plush in the crawling scenarios and for sure better in the back end as far as whoops or getting a little airborne. Less buck! No question now when your front tires hit a rock step 6-10”, you don’t feel that same harshness. It feels more like it soaks it up. I even put the 14 psi back in the tires before testing. This is all on the soft Shock settings.
I did try the firm setting for the first time today and also tried firm up front and soft in the rear. Neither of those settings were offensive to me either but I still prefer full soft the most. I really like that plush boaty ride but it handles great like that, even coming over a pretty good water bar sideways at 35-40 mph. Just soaks it up and doesn’t feel like your fighting the car at all.
Its a good cheap up grade for the 2 seat. Not sure it would be worth it for the four seat after seeing the tender springs in person on one at the dealer. I’m not going to say it’s OMG what an amazing difference, but it is an improvement at the same time getting better clearance. That’s a big deal to me because I believe all lift kits come at a compromise in some ride quality and this is the opposite on this machine.
For the money it’s worth every penny to me, even if it’s only for 3000-4000 miles. Honestly it will suit my riding for life but I’m pretty certain within a year or two Shock Therapy will have a full spring kit available for this that can be customized for the weight of cargo hauled etc. Around that time the shocks could use some servicing and I’ll be ready to drop some cash for a real duel spring package. I’m sure that’s when I’d say wow that’s a huge change.
Meanwhile I’ve accomplished my goal of full protection, cargo, clearance, and even a bit better ride. My dream has been this do all machine with 15” clearance and once I wear out these tires and get 32s I’ll have it without cranking down the preload more. I also think I’m going to like the simplicity of the quick Shock adjustment. I’m pretty sure when I get it loaded down to go camping I’ll be able to just click the backend to firm or hard and not feel like I’m driving the Tuna Boat!
Also I did notice a bit more roll when I’d jerk the wheel back and forth in the beginning, which makes sense but it’s very minimal and when just ripping and driving the next 3 hours I didn’t even think about it. It’s not anything like when we first disconnected sway bars on previous models. If it came stock like this no one would say “ what about that body roll! “
Sounds good, thanks for the info. I like to run mine on full soft as well, love that cushy ride. I plan on 32's as well down the road. I also like the quick adjust shocks, I got real tired of playing with all the adjustments, lol.
 
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This is a very interesting thread! I've never owned a machine with this much suspension tech. I'm excited to start playing around.
 
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For anyone not experienced with compressed springs and especially spring compressors, BE CAREFUL.

This should be your mindset the whole time you are working with compressed, unsecured springs.
 

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Yep, I tried using on my UTV ones on my truck. It slipped off and boy did that thing fly. I was wearing full protective gear and got a really nasty bruise on my arm when it let go. Had it been my head, I probably would have had a doctor visit.
 
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