Kawasaki ZX-10R Forum banner

1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I've got a 2004 ZX-10R that is fully awesome and handles great... doesn't even have a damper, and I don't think it needs one. I've never ridden any of the later gens, but I assumed that they would handle as well or better. So it was really bizarre when talking with another rider about bikes, and he told me that he used to own a 2011 ZX-10R, but hated the way it handled - "unstable in the curves" even with a damper. He disliked it enough that he traded it in on a 2014 CBR1000 that he really loves. I don't think he's ignorant - he has ridden for years, does a lot of track days, and is an aircraft mechanic - I think he probably knows his bikes.
A gen 4 that rides worse than a gen 1... What gives? ... Anyone else heard of something similar?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,164 Posts
I rode my gen 1 for 4 laps and hated every lap. The bike wasn't setup very well and the tires were crap. My gen 4 handles great but it has a ton of money in susp/chassis parts. I know the oem rear shock isn't very good and that's probably where all the issues came from that your friend experienced.

It all comes down to setup and making the bike work for you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Yeah, I definitely agree that a poor setup will ruin any bike! I'm glad to hear you say that you like your gen 4 because the only reason I might consider getting something other than my gen 1 is to upgrade to a newer version. But that's also interesting you've had to dump a lot into improving the suspension/chassis, and I hadn't heard that about the rear shock being poor on the gen 4's. Hmmm... maybe I'll stick with what I've got...
 

·
REPOST Enforcement Mod
Joined
·
15,214 Posts
Setup.

I've owned all of the Gens except for the Gen 1. The G4 is by far the bast of the bunch. But it does take some work to setup correctly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Okay, so this is just mind-blowing to me... the gen 4 comes from the factory with a setup that only rides great once it's been set-up differently with a difficult and expensive process (!). Seems like Kawasaki should've had enough time to hear that feedback and make some changes...

Is that true with any of the other gen's?
Also, what's involved in the set-up?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,823 Posts
Setup.

I've owned all of the Gens except for the Gen 1. The G4 is by far the bast of the bunch. But it does take some work to setup correctly.

Except for me jumping to a Gen 4, I totally agree with this.
 

·
ZX-10R enthusiast
Joined
·
6,556 Posts
What kind of riding do you do to not need a damper on a Gen1?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
What kind of riding do you do to not need a damper on a Gen1?
Street riding... and maybe I just haven't been in the right set of circumstances to notice any problems. But it's interesting that I also remember reading a professional review of the '04 10R where the author claimed the same thing - that this bike didn't need a damper.
 

·
REPOST Enforcement Mod
Joined
·
15,214 Posts
Okay, so this is just mind-blowing to me... the gen 4 comes from the factory with a setup that only rides great once it's been set-up differently with a difficult and expensive process (!). Seems like Kawasaki should've had enough time to hear that feedback and make some changes...

Is that true with any of the other gen's?
Also, what's involved in the set-up?
It's not that difficult. The stock settings are set for a lightweight Japanese school girl. They need to be stiffened up with the sag set correctly for us North American huskies. There is quite a bit of adjustment range on the front and the BPF works well. The rear shock is undersprung for heavier guys. And the ride height needs adjusting. In my case, I resprung the OEM shock and added a 7mm ride height shim. Total cost was under $160 for the spring work and the shim was less than $2. That steering damper is just an ornamental conversation piece. Not needed at all on the bike.

The above changes transformed the bike from a road going bike night cruiser into a turnin', burnin' track weapon.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
LOL @ Japanese school girl riders - pics please!

Thanks for clarifying what's involved SkyDork... not as bad as I imagined. Also interesting that you don't feel the damper is needed on the gen 4. I take it you've ridden without it?
 

·
REPOST Enforcement Mod
Joined
·
15,214 Posts
Thanks for clarifying what's involved SkyDork... not as bad as I imagined. Also interesting that you don't feel the damper is needed on the gen 4. I take it you've ridden without it?
Yes. Both on my G2 and G4. I never had a need/opportunity to remove it from the G3. I hate how it looks with it removed from the bike, so I keep it there but on the lightest setting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,664 Posts
Okay, so this is just mind-blowing to me... the gen 4 comes from the factory with a setup that only rides great once it's been set-up differently with a difficult and expensive process (!). Seems like Kawasaki should've had enough time to hear that feedback and make some changes...

Is that true with any of the other gen's?
Also, what's involved in the set-up?

Every production bike pretty much needs the same mods to make them compliant and competitive on the track. The revered Ducati 1098/1198/848 platform required not only proper suspension fitted (even to the S models), but also 30mm offset triple clamps just to keep the bike from running wide on every single corner exit.

The Gen4 responds exceptionally well to the suspension mods and the linear link, way better than other current literbikes I have tested in the same regard and quite frankly the Gen4 is the first ever ZX-10R that can truly hack it at the racetrack I mean Kawasaki finally got it right in 2011 and the race grids from club events to World Superbike show it. The previous gens of the ZX-10 especially the Gen1 were horrible handling bikes with way more motor than chassis. I mean if the factory racing efforts with their almost endless budgets couldn't get those previous bikes to handle properly then us mere mortals stand no chance whatsoever. Sure if you are just doing trackdays and cruising around a 15 or 20 seconds off the pace then they are fine, but when you really need to up the pace they would fight you all the way to the checkered flag.

Now in regard to your buddies choice of the 2014 CBR1000RR: The base model 2014 1000RR bike is easier to ride relatively quick than the Gen 4 ZX-10R because the engine has less horsepower and delivers it in a more user friendly manner. When you twist a ZX-10R throttle to the stop it is going to do things the CBR just plain doesn't understand how to do and it is under those conditions that you can really start to see where the Gen4 starts to excel. At a safe and sane track pace the 1000RR is arguably a better bike, but for more serious pursuits the Gen 4 ZX is a better platform to build on.

If your bud happened to pick up a 2014 CBR1000RR SP with the Ohlins suspension on it then he also has the advantage of some really good suspension on the bike. What comes on the Honda SP model is not just crappy Production suspension like Ducati throws on their S model bikes, but rather proper suspension like the aftermarket stuff most of us purchase for track use and that definitely adds to the comfort zone most riders will feel on the SP model over most other production bikes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,164 Posts
Yeah, I definitely agree that a poor setup will ruin any bike! I'm glad to hear you say that you like your gen 4 because the only reason I might consider getting something other than my gen 1 is to upgrade to a newer version. But that's also interesting you've had to dump a lot into improving the suspension/chassis, and I hadn't heard that about the rear shock being poor on the gen 4's. Hmmm... maybe I'll stick with what I've got...
You misread a bit, I rode the bike for 100km on the street and just noticed the rear squatted quite a bit under acceleration. The bike was then turned into a race bike and I wasn't going to bother with stock suspension. For street riding a revalve/spring would make a world of difference for less than $500. The chassis parts are to get the bike to handle the way I want it to around a race track, there's no way I would need any of these parts for street riding.

For a street bike the gen 1 is amazing and I prefer it over the newer bike strictly because of how much of an animal it is, the newer bike feels docile.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for clarifying that dricked! Makes sense now. And yeah, I don't have any basis of comparison with the other gens, but I can attest that the gen 1 is an animal - LOL.

I appreciate your insight LDH... great explanation of why my buddy prefers the Honda, and is right in line with what he said about it having less performance but he felt much more in control. Also, I will say that you're the first I've heard claim that the earlier gens were horrible handling, but I don't doubt it - everything is relative. Please help me understand what you mean by "way more motor than chassis"...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,976 Posts
Street riding... and maybe I just haven't been in the right set of circumstances to notice any problems. But it's interesting that I also remember reading a professional review of the '04 10R where the author claimed the same thing - that this bike didn't need a damper.

Our sport is so bazar...There is someone some where saying something.

I can only speak to how I ride, and the surfaces of the old mountain roads ...
And....my experiences.

I wouldn't use any damper that was a lesser design than Scotts (in Europe it is logo'd Ohlins).

The setup on the suspension and chassis, is everything.

People are built differently, and of course weigh differently, and come from different riding backgrounds, that have developed different styles of hoe to tell your bike, how to do...What you want it to do.

But...We have freedom...So feel free to what Ya want.
 

·
The Pace
Joined
·
7,076 Posts
Okay, so this is just mind-blowing to me... the gen 4 comes from the factory with a setup that only rides great once it's been set-up differently with a difficult and expensive process (!). Seems like Kawasaki should've had enough time to hear that feedback and make some changes...

Is that true with any of the other gen's?
Also, what's involved in the set-up?
Wrong by my personal experience and I own two g4's and beat the crap outta both, routinely, '11 and '13.

Only two aspects have to change on g4, the can and the fender. Period. I ride the most technical 200 mile loop at least five days per week, weather permitting and have logged 56,000 miles on the same loop since April 18, 2012.

And the g4 does not need the damper. It pays to dial into the bike and by that I mean ya gotta know how to ride it, and it's not hard if you know how to ride, but if ya can't ride, this bike will want you off it right away and will most certainly tell you. If you know how to ride this bike will save your ass time after time.

I've owned many supers, but only the kawa g4's.

I suspect you made the whole story up and are yet another troll coming here to agitate.
 

·
The Pace
Joined
·
7,076 Posts
Setup.

I've owned all of the Gens except for the Gen 1. The G4 is by far the bast of the bunch. But it does take some work to setup correctly.
Sky, not set up, look at his moniker and post number. Troll city yet again, but worse than the vendor trolls.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,929 Posts
From a gen4 to a CBR! Really?
Y didn't he just buy a Fatboy,2different rides! Honda won't put TC or power modes on even there Ohlins and Brembo SP saying it doesn't need them, And yes I've had a 2006 CBR1000R full Ackrapovich, PC and was a beautifully sedate, smooth sportbike! But I decided to get a SUPERBIKE 2012ZX10R that has already shot around the corner just thinking about it! Yes it's got Ohlins and Brembos that wasn't even needed but hay I say y not...there's a saying..."different strokes for different blokes"don't listen to 1 view try a CBR then try a ZX10R 2011-2014 and make your own decision
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
125 Posts
hmmm

docile gen4......hmmm, obviously has not been on my gen4---I know that when gen1 was released, it truly was a beast in nearly every way.....more engine than chassis, and what had actually happened on the track that they seemed to never tame the inherit problems.....gen2 seemed to handle the chassis issues and matured---my gen2 has suspension work and rotor upgrade as well as dampener upgrade, and compared to my gen4 rides like a 75 Cadillac.....my gen4 is a monster, with stock suspension, it is not nearly as sorted as my gen2 is---biggest need is to get the ass end of that bike higher than even, and above the squat---have my eye on the mechatronic ohlins with ride height to take care of this problem---after that I would think that most of my issue with the bike will be solved-
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top