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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yea, it sucks. I dropped my baby. It's embarrassing honestly, and I think the reason is because the bike is just a bit tall for me. I'm on tippy toes at red lights, it's a bit better when my girlfriend is on the back, but I'd like to be able to flat foot at a stop and feel secure like on my CBR600. I have googled, and couldn't find any lowering links for our bike. Mine's a 2011 model. I'm about 5'8, 165lbs. It's possible the stock suspension needs an adjustment, I just don't know how to do it on this bike. Any info appreciated. I love the bike, but at times it just seems too tall for me. I've never had issues just putting my leg over to get on a seat before, but on this bike sometimes I have to kinda jump on lol.
 

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One part we may not have thought about.....lower bike may mean you need a shorter kick stand?

Check ebay..several,places make them, or find a stock kickstand and shorten it.
 

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Will def need a kickstand thats adjustable. I plan to lower mine by about 3/4" to get my feet down a little better as well. Was going to do a style like what RC posted (not the bucket but the adjustable link)
 

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Kawasaki Lowering Links Ninja 1000 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 Ninja 1000 | eBay

I just bought that one, haven't installed it yet. Looks exactly like the t-rex link I was waiting to come back in stock (waited for 4 months before I gave up). I am in between my toes and balls of my feet, but I don't want to be flat footed. Changing the height of the bike that far is too much for me. I'll probably only drop it 1/2" and drop the front a little.
 

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Here's how to adjust your suspension, and there are some other threads on how you want it to sit without your weight as well as with your weight after you've adjusted.

 

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Try this first, take your seat off, and stand/sit over the bike. Pretty sure you will be flat footed. Its better to modify the seat rather than mess with the geometry. I've recommended people shave their seat so it is narrower near the tank, , which can make a huge dfifference. Buy a used seat somewhere and do it your self
 

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Try this first, take your seat off, and stand/sit over the bike. Pretty sure you will be flat footed. Its better to modify the seat rather than mess with the geometry. I've recommended people shave their seat so it is narrower near the tank, , which can make a huge dfifference. Buy a used seat somewhere and do it your self
I thought about that, but to me the seat is comfortable as is. I may eventually spring for a gel seat, but while riding with my feet up I'm happy where it's at.

As far as lowering it, if you're barely able to keep the bike standing and you want flat footed you're going to be lowering it quite a bit. The whole riding experience will change if you're changing it that much.
 

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There's definitely more ways than one to fix the issue and hope you succeed with one that suits you. Some times though when life gives you lemons, make more lemonade.

https://youtu.be/6TT3m1DZlDE
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for the links rcannon, as usual you prove to be a great asset to this forum! I searched google and revzilla and couldn't find one so I assumed nobody made them for this bike. After looking at those ebay links it seems Pro Tek makes a nice lowering link, and it's sold on Amazon as well.

https://www.amazon.com/LL-225S-Adjustable-Lowering-2011-2016-2010-2016/dp/B01J8E9AVS

I'm going to try and set my suspension for my weight, and if it's still not where I'd like it to be I'll buy one of these. Thanks again.
 

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Thanks for the links rcannon, as usual you prove to be a great asset to this forum! I searched google and revzilla and couldn't find one so I assumed nobody made them for this bike. After looking at those ebay links it seems Pro Tek makes a nice lowering link, and it's sold on Amazon as well.

https://www.amazon.com/LL-225S-Adjustable-Lowering-2011-2016-2010-2016/dp/B01J8E9AVS

I'm going to try and set my suspension for my weight, and if it's still not where I'd like it to be I'll buy one of these. Thanks again.
That's the one I bought, just got it off ebay. $5 cheaper.
 

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I do have to say, I'm not into this lowering thing.

It might be one thing to shorten a shock and fork, but I detest these links.

I'm not tall. My pants are 30' length.

The tall, light dirt bikes were no big deal. The heavy street bikes were. The very best way to deal with this problem is improve low speed skills. The big thing here is the rear brake. If you use the rear brake, properly, you can get to a point where you can balance the bike when it's stopped.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The real trouble I have is throwing my leg over to mount the bike. That's where I dropped it, stopping at lights aren't so bad because I lean left enough so I can put my left foot flat, otherwise I'm tip toeing both feet without leaning. The side cases probably don't help in my case either because I have to swing my leg even wider.
 

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I have a 28" inseam. I had to learn to ride 200/250cc dual sports in order to teach MC classes with them. After I managed that, I decided to see if I could handle our '78 KZ 400 which I had deemed as too tall for me before I learned to ride. Had a ball on it! So I sold my flat-foot-able Shadow Aero 750 for a 2010 NT700V (31.7" seat height, also pretty wide standover and most definitely top-heavy). Put about 35K miles on it, then sold it for my N1K. Taller seat height, but lower CG and 100lbs lighter. The stock seat is an absolute brick, so I opted for a custom seat from a local guy which he made a little narrower at the standover point. In order to mount it, I step on the left peg (trying to get as close to the frame as I can), squeeze the front brake, and swing my right leg over; that's how I got on the NT, too.

I get into trouble on uneven or rough surfaces (gravel, grass). And I usually have to turn it around in a parking lot or garage by walking beside it and leaning it on the sidestand frequently. Like RC said, the better your low speed skills are, the better off you'll be (Good clutch control, serious counterweighting, big head turn--think owl, and ride the rear brake).

The secret to stopping is tripoding. That means leaving your right foot on the rear brake and sliding to the left slightly so you can get your left foot down as far as you can. My husband is 5'7" and used to tiptoe his '85 Goldwing (900+lbs and unbelievably top heavy. I only rode it once, around our neighborhood). Used to make me nervous watching him. Didn't help that he rode it in tennis shoes.

And make sure you practice quick stops, both straight and in a curve, so you develop the muscle memory you need to get that left foot down quickly after downshifting.
 
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Bazninja, do you teach your riders low speed handling?

Suppose soemoen is reading this and saying, Yes, better skills are the answer...well, great...So, what do you want them to do to get better?

What you've said, so far, Im 100% with. Any more specific things a rider can do?

Offroad really helped me with this as so much of trail riding happened under 10 mph. You developed skills out of repetition.
 

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Empty parking lot starting and stopping. Pull into spots, pull out of spots into a sharp turn, stop and go, etc.
 

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Bazninja, do you teach your riders low speed handling?

Suppose soemoen is reading this and saying, Yes, better skills are the answer...well, great...So, what do you want them to do to get better?

What you've said, so far, Im 100% with. Any more specific things a rider can do?

Offroad really helped me with this as so much of trail riding happened under 10 mph. You developed skills out of repetition.
Yep, via the dreaded BOX.:devil:

We start out with a 24'x60' U-turn box, and do a U-turn left, then one right. Then riders exit and do an S-turn, then a tight left perimeter turn, rinse and repeat. After a few passes, we shrink the box to 20'x60', which is part of the skills evaluation. The S-turn is actually the 20' U-turns, turned outward instead of inward. It's amazing how many students can do the S, but not the U; it really is a mental thing because the technique is the same. Now, we're doing this on 500cc bikes and smaller. In the experienced classes where you ride your own bike, 501-999cc bikes get to use the full 24'; 1000cc and up get to do it in 28'. This is very beneficial for liter bikes because, as we know, they're built for go-fast-in-curves, which makes slow stuff more challenging.

How do you do it? Find a speed that's neither too fast nor too slow: too fast, and you're outside the lines, too slow and you're fighting wobbling and falling (speed means stability, even going slow). Control your speed with the clutch to keep it smooth. 1st gear, 2nd gear, figure out what works best for you; I worked with an instructor who would do it it 5th gear just because you can. It's all about clutch control. Next, BIG head turns!!! Seriously, think "OWL"! On the 250s, if I'm doing it right, I can see the tail light out of the corner of my eye. Counterweighting: shifting your weight to the outside of the turn by weighting the outside peg or literally shifting your butt. Some of us have more ballast than others, so use what you've got. :wink: Sit up straight, don't hunch over the bike or look down at the lines; channel your inner diva. Good chance that the handlebars will be at full lock, especially on our bikes. Now, repeat after me: NO FRONT BRAKE IN THE BOX!!! Rear brake, however, is your best friend on the N1K!! It helps make it want to stand up instead of fall down. Speaking of which, if you feel the bike begin to fall, gas will make it stand up. I found out how well this works when I ended up doing a nasty <90 degree right turn out of a parking lot on my NT700V. As I was dragging my right boot on the street, determined not to dump the bike in front of the Honda dealer where they KNEW I was a coach, I gassed it, the bike stood up, and away I went. Training and practice, guys!!!

Here's an easy way to set up your own U-turn box. Get some cheap tennis balls. Cut them in half with a bandsaw (Your handyman neighbor will have one if you don't; I'm married to that handyman neighbor, so I'm lucky!:grin:). Voila, you now have your own set of range "cones"; this is what we use for bicycle classes, too. Find a big empty parking lot where you have permission to be (I worked on it at the back side of the mall where nobody parks except for Black Friday). Get a measuring tape, measure your desired box size, set the tennis balls, and there you go! Work on it. When you start noticing diminishing returns, it's time to take a break. We spend in the neighborhood of 15-20 minutes on it during class when we're first teaching it, and then it's part of the review exercise before the skills eval. Don't be surprised if your clutch hand hurts! That's how coaches know we've done our job. It's all about torturing the students!!:devil: I worked on learning to do it on a H-D Rocker C. It has a 69.3" wheelbase; it's longer than I am tall!!:surprise: I managed to do it 24', and my pre-carpal tunnel surgery clutch hand was snapping the whole time on that 2008 Harley clutch.:crying:
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I was almost flat footing stock, but with the 55 tire and sergeant seat I am on the balls of my feet. I usually stand it up with just my left foot and park it pointing out and I don't mind. I would be worried about changing how the bike feels lowering it.

I did hear some people were raising the forks in the triple tree some so you could maybe balance it out? I am out of my element though just a thought.
 
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