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Discussion Starter #1
Yo All! I stumbled onto this site last night and couldn't peel myself away till the wee hours of the morning. Anyway, I haven't seen many posts about the overall performance of the rear suspension on the standard F7's. I've noticed that after a few miles on a rough trail, there appears to be a complete lack of dampening in mine. I've got the rear spring on the stiffest setting, bump stops on 2, and even cranked up the preload on the front shock. I can compress the rear suspension to bottom by simply pushing on the rear grab bar and it feels like spring only. I weigh a buck ninety five. There is definately more dampening when the suspension couples (rear arm hits bump stop) but the rear shock feels completely whooped to me. This was with less that 100 miles on the machine too. I ran into a distant friend at our local dealer and he was in the process of buying a new F7. He asked me what I thought and I told him If I could do it over, I would buy the sno-pro model because I'm not very happy with the rear suspension. The salesman was present for this and dismissed it as mis-adjustment. 3 days later I spoke to him and he had already brought the machine back to the dealer because the rear suspesion was too soft. I guess they checked the valving and said they were in spec. They are going to revalve the shocks for a 240+ rider and this dude only weighs 175#. I'm waiting to see how his ride feels after the re-valving. Any help/suggestions/comments?

By the way... this board rocks! :D
 

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Did you have an AC before? This is very coman with an Arctic Cat snowmobile. It is the design of the rear skid that makes it feel soft. The key is: How do your bump stops look? Like they have bottomed out a lot? You will notice this by a deep groove or scrap on the rear skip bump stop located on the rails (not the couplers). AC spec on a standard suspenion (as I read it out of the Jan/Feb 2003 Snowtech) is 16.5" to 18" from the floor to the center of the rear bumper, with the rider seated on the sled. The Snopro should be up 1-2" from that. It also mentions that if you feel like you are bottoming the front skid, it is the front drive cogs. It states that you CAN NOT physically bottom out the front skid due to design and driver size. They say that feel you get is from the actual drivers hitting the mogel at the right time/angle. They do make mention of the 20% stiffer kit if needed.

I ride VERY hard and I can tell you that my std. F7 is definately softer than my 01 Snopro, BUT, it has a more plush ride in the trails (where it was designed to be ridden). We also have a guy in the group with a new ZL and every feels that the F7 (setup corretly) has a smoother ride. The key on the F7 is to actually keep it soft in the front end. You can get too much feedback throught the bars if you tighten up the front springs too much. That will make the sled hard to hang on to.

$0.02
 

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The front of the skid on mine definitely bottoms out.I am in the process of getting the sno pro shock,and the heavy spring,I did this to the rear of the skid with success.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the reply busted. I have the front springs (skis) tighter than I would like but damn...If I back them off the weight transfer is even more drastic. After I studded the track, I couldnt get the thing to turn. I do need to upgrade my runners but even still, the engine and clutching is so crisp, I couln't get the skis to bite without cranking up the pre-load. I don't know about the trails where you are riding, but many of the trails I ride on are often nasty and loaded with whoops. I'm pretty sure I need more dampening.

One other thing I notice as well, If I upset the sled while accellerating hard out of a turn or over a bump, she stays upset untill I back out of the gas and ease the front down. This has me wanting to increase the spring preload in the front. It's kinda wierd to me because It doesn't seem physically possible for the sled to ride on flat terrain with the front end all twisted up in the air, but it happens all the time. There again, I just think the rear shocks are allowing way too much weight tranfer too quickly. Great for the lake but shitty for the trails. I'm not a drag racer and I'm not in it for the top speed. I dig the woods though.

Some of you guys will probobly get wicked pissed at me for saying this, but my buddy has a 98 SRX that feels better on the trails than my sled. (to me anyway) Sure he's got Ohlins, but what the hell...that sled is 5 years old and has way less travel...but the thing in on rails.

Anyway...I truly love my F7, but we've definately got some tweaking to do!

Northeaster - let me know how you make out with the sno-pro shocks.

Peace - out yo! B)
 
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