PROGRESSIVE fork springs with PVC spacer too firm - Cut 1/2 inch off the PVC spacer? - VTXOA
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 05:34 AM Thread Starter
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PROGRESSIVE fork springs with PVC spacer too firm - Cut 1/2 inch off the PVC spacer?

I had my mechanic put new 15wt fork oil. While there they checked the Progressive fork springs I have in the forks and they told me that the fork springs were under too much pressure from the PVC spacer (too much preload). Bike is a 2007 VTX 1300 S.

They said they could cut off 1/2 of an inch to 3/4 of an inch from the PVC spacer for less pressure on the fork springs. This stroke me as odd as the PVC spacer is the one provided by Progressive. I haven't read of anyone cutting the PVC spacer due to too much "pressure" (preload).

The front rides too wild though. It transmits all potholes. It's too firm. As said current setup is Progressive fork springs (with Progressive PVC spacer) with 15wt oil, and I'm not happy with it. Thinking of switching to Honda OEM springs with 15wt fork oil.

Anyone know if cutting off 1/2 of an inch from the PVC spacer will work fine or should I just go back to Honda's OEM fork springs?

Could it be that the Progressive fork springs wee incorrectly installed by my previous mechanic which causes the PVC spacer to put too much pressure on the fork springs? The installation of Progressive fork springs looks to be too simple and easy so no chances of *******g up the installation, but my previous mechanic was very crap (as I unfortunately learned once I knew more about my VTX).

Thanks

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Last edited by EuroDude; 02-15-2017 at 05:38 AM.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 08:14 AM
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I purchased some PVC pipe from Home Depot and cut several various lengths to tune my front forks some time back. I think I made about four sets other than the stock size all of various sizes. I use 10 Wt oil oil in mine and Progressive Springs. I then tried all of them to get the best ride and handling. Sorry but I can not remember now which size I decided on. But it is possible to do this. It might also defend on whether or not they put the correct amount of oil in the forks.

Last edited by cal_105; 02-15-2017 at 08:17 AM.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 01:05 PM
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15 Wt oil is going to stiffen it up a lot !!
Many go back to 10 Wt or mix 12.5 wt....
I think those PVC spacers are supposed to be cut to size/length for specific bikes?? Could have just been left to long???
My Progressives worked great.
Mechanic did them when Neck bearings were being replaced....
So I cant give you correct Length......??


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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 01:46 PM
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the pvc they provide needs to be cut to length per the bike they are going in...like cal_105 said, many have trimmed the size based on how they feel the road.

i guess the step would be assuming that there is correct amount of oil in fork:
- to measure the length of the spacer to begin with so that you know if its the correct length currently.
- then have extra PVC and shorten the length in small increments (1/2" or 3/4") to try the ride.

can't comment on:
- oil weight effect...currently trying to figure out how drastic the changes realized are between the stock 10wt vs the 15wt oil
- you may want to measure the fluid in there if nothing feels different..not sure how to do that.

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 03:07 PM
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I used 10wt fork oil when I installed the Progressives on my '06R. I followed the instructions and verified the oil to be at the proper level For the VTX 1300R, the Progressive sheet recommended to reuse the original spacer, which I did.

However, the forks were too stiff. I decided to cut the PVC to about 3/8" shorter than the original spacer, which improved the ride but it was still a little too stif and, if memory serves me, I removed about 10CC of oil from each fork. After this, the ride was really nice.

If you stay with the 15wt oil, I would imagine your results will be quite different than mine though.

Personally, I would go in 1/4" or 3/8" increments to cut your spacers.

I hope this helps!
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 12:27 AM
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i went with 15wt oil on progressive springs original spacer
stock spec oil level . couldn't be happier

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 05:49 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you all.

I went with 15wt fork oil since my Progressive springs with 10wt oil were too mushy. My experience with Prog. springs + 10wt oil is that for the first 500 miles they're great, but then the fork springs start to dive badly (almost like stock springs). I'm not the only who has experienced this. That's why I decided to put on 15wt oil with the Prog. springs and see what's the effect. I don't mind paying for discarding the 15wt oil and putting 10wt oil. My comfort is more important as so is my safety; 15wt oil is too jarring.

I think I'm going to go ahead and cut the PVC spacer. Before that, is the Honda OEM spacer shorter than the Progressive spacer? Perhaps I could simply remove the Prog. spacer and put in the Honda OEM spacer if the latter is shorter?

The 444 rear shocks are very smooth, which do really highlight the need for a smoother front.

I'm also considering going back to OEM springs and 15wt oil.

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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 09:11 PM
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You could always go Racetech Gold Valve Emulators and Springs... Kind of a 1 and done
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-19-2017, 03:29 PM
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I think OEM springs pretty much suck with any weight oil , too much nose dive. With your progressives ,Cutting the spacers should give less spring tension and softer ride........ Without emulators and with stock springs I couldn't tell much difference at all between 10 or 15w fork oil . I did put in race tech springs with the emulators , 15w oil cut spacers and set emmulator according to race tech instructions for a firm but plush ride and am very happy for 4 years . When I set on the bike the forks compress about 1 inch. But one man's plush ride would be to hard to someone else maybe. So with what you have now, I would cut the spacers a half inch , see how it does .
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 08:18 AM Thread Starter
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Quick update:

I now have Progressive fork springs + Honda OEM spacer + 15wt fork oil. The bike's front is riding substantially better. It absorbs bumps much better and provides a firm ride.

Prior to this combination, I had the same combination but with Progressive's spacer instead of Honda OEM's spacer. Progressive's space is too long (longer than Honda's OEM) for my liking as it provides a firm but jarry ride when going through bumps. Simply putting back in Honda OEM's spacer has improved the ride substantially.

I may go up to 20wt oil with Honda OEM's fork springs, although I'm happy now with how the front is behaving with this setup and it's working great with the rear shocks.

Tsukayu VTX hard bags & Tour trunk, Saddlemen touring seat with backrest, NC custom windshield, Risers, LED lightbar, Engine guard LED lights, Cobra fatty guard, Rear engine guards, Fender rail guard, Leather tank bib, Passenger floorboards, 12v socket, ISO grips WITH bar weights, Engine chrome, Triple tree cover, Shaft cover, Fenders chrome, Progressive forks & 12.5 inch shocks, All Balls mod, Chrome clock, Adjustable trunk rack
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