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Thread: Factory Low Suspension vs. Aftermarket

  1. #1

    Factory Low Suspension vs. Aftermarket

    In my bike search one model I am considering is the F700 GS. I need a low seat height, so the factory low suspension/low-seat option is attractive to me.

    Obviously these bikes are only available on the used market (at least, here in the U.S.) So I can't special order the factory low suspension. I have to find one on the used market that otherwise meets my requirements (e.g., low miles, within geographic and price range, etc) and has the factory low suspension. Not easy but not impossible, with patience.

    Or, how difficult and costly is it to convert a standard suspension to an aftermarket low suspension? Can it even be done? Is the result as good as the oem factory solution? What would be the downsides to this approach compared to the factory low suspension? Anything else to consider? Also, is the low seat readily available form BMW or other?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat Omega Man's Avatar
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    Have a peek at the F-Twins index. I did my F-800GS. 2” lower.
    OM
    "You can do good or you can do well. Sooner or later they make you choose." MI5
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    2009 F800GS 1994 TW200

  3. #3
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    Of course there are aftermarket options... I am looking at this kit but for the F850GSA


    https://touratech-usa.com/Store/Tour...F700GS-2013-on
    Ride safe!
    Wachuko
    2019 BMW F 850 GS Adventure

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by wachuko View Post
    Of course there are aftermarket options... I am looking at this kit but for the F850GSA


    https://touratech-usa.com/Store/Tour...F700GS-2013-on
    Thanks for that lead.

    One thing I noticed in the description is that this kit does not actually lower the suspension like the factory option. It only softens the suspension so it sits lower under weight compression.

    They work by using a very soft spring rate for the first 1.2" of travel, and a normal progressive rate for the rest, giving you a suspension system that is 1.2" shorter under weight, but normal length unweighted.

  5. #5
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    This is the video that got me looking at that kit...

    Ride safe!
    Wachuko
    2019 BMW F 850 GS Adventure

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by wachuko View Post
    This is the video that got me looking at that kit...
    That was a well-done video. Thanks.

    They were very happy with their Progressive lowering kit, it certainly seems like a good package. But they did not seem to discuss the issue of whether it actually lowers the suspension.

    I get that it will compress down more than the standard suspension with application of weight. But until that happens it is the same height which could make the mount/dismount trickier. At least, that’s how the kit for the F700 is described. Maybe the F850 kit is different?

    Ohh, but hold on a sec. Maybe I am confusing the Touratec and the Hyperpro systems? Maybe Hyperpro does actually lower it?

  7. #7
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    One and the same... Hyperpro makes that kit... Made in Holland by Hyperpro for Touratech Suspension
    Ride safe!
    Wachuko
    2019 BMW F 850 GS Adventure

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by wachuko View Post
    One and the same... Hyperpro makes that kit... Made in Holland by Hyperpro for Touratech Suspension
    Ahhh, gotcha. Thanks for setting me straight on that. I’m not very familiar with these products yet....

  9. #9
    Does anyone happen to know if it is still possible to purchase the “factory low suspension” kit from BMW, for an F650GS (twin) and F700GS? Any idea on prices?

  10. #10
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    At least in the case if the F650GS the only difference is the rear shock and the sidestand both of which should be available as individual parts. BMW did not provide a low center stand but one is available from SW Motech.

    The F700GS has something different in the front forks that I can't recall.

    Sent from my SM-G950W using Tapatalk

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by RadioFlyer View Post
    At least in the case if the F650GS the only difference is the rear shock and the sidestand both of which should be available as individual parts. BMW did not provide a low center stand but one is available from SW Motech.

    The F700GS has something different in the front forks that I can't recall.

    Sent from my SM-G950W using Tapatalk
    Thank you very much.

    That sounds odd that they would only lower the rear and not the front suspension on the F650GS. I wonder why?

    I did see that there is a Touratech/Hyperpro kit for the F650GS twin, similar to the F700GS kit that wachuko showed me. It “lowers” (when weighted) the front springs as well as the rear.

  12. #12
    Another related question is whether the factory low SEAT is still available from BMW for these models?

    (If someone can post-up a good on-line parts source, I will try to answer these questions myself.)

  13. #13
    When I was looking at the F700GS for my wife we were looking for a factory lowered bike but couldn't find one locally to try and sit on and get a good feel if it would work. What we did find was a nicely options 2014 F700GS with the comfort seat. She was able to sit on the bike and get a feel for it. It was a bit tall for her so we thanked the guy and walked away.

    I got home and went on ebay and for a 100 buck I found a factory lowered seat. I called the guy with the bike we made a deal and I bought the lowered seat. It works great for her. She is 5'3" with a 29" inseam. I must add we are not necessarily a fan of the thought that you have to flat foot the bike while sitting. She is on the balls of her feet when stopped and of course on one foot she is fine with the foot flat. She has now had the bike a year and a half and she does not want a lowered bike.

    So I guess the point here is one needs to ask the question "why I want it lowered?"

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by grabcon View Post
    ...So I guess the point here is one needs to ask the question "why I want it lowered?"
    For me, because the 850 GSA is top heavy. With very little tilt to either side, unless you have solid footing, very difficult to avoid the bike go down sideways on you. This is the main reason that I am looking to be better planted at stops... Outside of those situations, bike is a pleasure to ride.
    Ride safe!
    Wachuko
    2019 BMW F 850 GS Adventure

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by grabcon View Post
    When I was looking at the F700GS for my wife we were looking for a factory lowered bike but couldn't find one locally to try and sit on and get a good feel if it would work. What we did find was a nicely options 2014 F700GS with the comfort seat. She was able to sit on the bike and get a feel for it. It was a bit tall for her so we thanked the guy and walked away.

    I got home and went on ebay and for a 100 buck I found a factory lowered seat. I called the guy with the bike we made a deal and I bought the lowered seat. It works great for her. She is 5'3" with a 29" inseam. I must add we are not necessarily a fan of the thought that you have to flat foot the bike while sitting. She is on the balls of her feet when stopped and of course on one foot she is fine with the foot flat. She has now had the bike a year and a half and she does not want a lowered bike.

    So I guess the point here is one needs to ask the question "why I want it lowered?"
    Thanks for that info. It's helpful.

    To answer the question "why I want it lowered?" ... Don't take this the wrong way, because it's not meant as an indictment of you. But there's a tendency to assume that one person's preferences or circumstances apply universally. It happens all over the internet on forums devoted to every conceivable topic. That is where questions like this come from. It does get old but I guess it's part of human nature to be opinionated.

    I am about 5" taller than your wife, but believe it or not have shorter legs. I also had a serious injury to the tendons in one foot requiring major surgery. That foot can no longer bear weight very well, and is especially aggravated by being on tip toes or anything like that which stretches the tendons. I need to be able to flat foot to bear the weight of a motorcycle and avoid re-injury. So flat footing is non-negotiable for me, even if others feel it is unnecessary for them.

    I have tried the F750GS low-suspension/low-seat and was able to flat foot. According to the specs, the same should be true of an F700GS and F650GS with low-suspension/low-seat. So I am focussing my search on those models with that option.

    I just wanted to understand what it would entail to convert a standard suspension to a low w/low seat, should a good deal crop up on one. From what I gather it can be done, but it seems the costs may partially negate any good deal I got in the first place.

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