Take advantage of this good weather and go for a ride.
At Works Performance, we put the winter to good use and developed new and improved products. Our new front fork solutions are being shipped as we speak and incorporate a gas cartridge along with our tried and proven adjustable dual rate spring sets.
A few words about springs,
Choosing the proper spring will achieve the desirable wheel rate for the application being considered. The incremental force needed per inch, to compress the suspension when measured at the wheel, defines the wheel rate. Chief factors are the weight of the vehicle, rider, passenger, luggage, leverage ratio and type of use.
The spring rate represents the incremental force required to compress the spring one inch. For example an 80 pound per inch spring compresses 1 inch when 80 lbs of pressure is applied. This same spring compresses 2 inches when 160 lbs of force is applied, compresses 3 inches when 240 lbs of force is applied, and so on.
Often the springs are combined to provide a soft initial rate with stiffer final rate and sometimes a middle rate. When the springs are combined, the individual spring follow the normal rules and travel is divided between the springs in inverse proportion of their rates.
It is a concept difficult to visualize, however let me shed a little light on the subject.
A common combination is a 240 pound per inch spring, on top of a 120 pound per inch spring. Let us examine the dynamics of this pair. I can tell you that you are looking at a 80 initial rate / 120 final rate spring. This is what will happen, 80 pounds of force will compress the spring stack 1 inch (until coil bind or crossover point is reached). The travel will be divided in this manner, the 240 pound per inch spring will compress 1/3 inch, and the 120 pound per inch spring will compress 2/3 inch. The separator (go between) which sits between the two springs seeks equilibrium. The force on both ends of the spring stack compresses the stack one inch for every 80 pounds of force applied (hence the 80 pound per inch spring stack rating). This will continue as long as both springs are free to share the travel, until one spring or the other reaches coil bind or is otherwise constrained (such as by a crossover ring). As soon as the spring reaches coil bind, or crossover point the rate will change (in this example the 80 lb per inch spring will cross over (no longer free to travel) and you will rely on the 120 pound per inch spring which remains. This is how we manipulate the crossover point with cross-over spacers inside the shorter spring. You will note that from this pair, the short spring will deflect 1/3 inch for every inch of travel, so that if you wanted to travel 3 inches to the crossover point, you would need 1 inch of available travel between the go-between (which sits between the two springs), and the cross-over spacer (which sit inside the short spring).
At this point I would like to introduce another way of manipulating the spring cross over point, the ARS (Adjustable Rate System) which allows you to make crossover distance adjustments by simply rotating a moveable stop by means of a lever. This system is a great attribute on a touring shock because it can provide a 50 percent increase right from the start, or a bit later in the stroke as desired. Many people do not understand the true function of this lever and expect a change of spring pre-load. Ours is a completely different approach, and addresses the need for a spring set to become stiffer earlier, not merely more pre-load on the combined spring set. The spring pre-load is adjusted separately, by a spacer or via threaded pre-load adjuster which sits on top of the spring stack.
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