"The best you've ridden is the best you know!" - Paul Thede
In stock form my Africa Twin was undersprung and underdamped on both the fork and shock, especially in aggressive off-road riding for my 6-foot-5, 235-pound body. The bike was almost unrideable in the rough stuff. Loving off-road riding more than riding on street, I had to correct the situation. We contacted Race Tech for help, and sent the suspension for a complete overhaul.
On the fork, Race Tech increased the spring rate and personalized the damping with significantly stiffer setup for both compression and rebound. For my build, the stock fork spring rate of 0.55kg was replaced with a Race Tech rate of 0.85kg, which made for a significant improvement in the bike’s on- and off-road handling. Compression valving was more than doubled, and rebound damping saw a significant increase as well. To remove restriction from the stock piston design, Race Tech used its Gold Valve technology which it claims provides a plush feel while also drastically increasing bottoming resistance.
For the shock, Race Tech provided its built-to-order, American-made G3-S custom shock. This gives every rider a tailored setup; spring rates are selected per order and a custom valving setup on Race Tech’s Gold Valve is used in every G3-S shock build. The unit on my Africa Twin featured the following: PB, or piggyback, gives compression adjustment while IFP (internal floating piston) versions do not offer any compression adjustment externally. RB, or rebound adjustment. RH, or ride height, has an adjustable clevis to change the shock length. RP, or remote preload, adds/subtracts ride height on the spring
The results were nothing short of amazing. The bike is so balanced. Gone is the tendency of the front end to want to tuck, bottom, and then wash out. I can rip through all off-road conditions without fear of losing the front end. An unexpected result is how well the bike now handles on pavement. I am not much of an asphalt guy, but the new suspension inspires a whole lot of confidence on the street.