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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My previous long term bike was a 2003 Honda Varadero XL1000V. Had it from new and kept it for 10 years. Other than service items I think I changed an indicator bulb once!
Initially I ran the Vara for a couple of years on the OEM springs and then felt an upgrade was needed. Without chucking huge funds at it, I opted for HyperPro progressive springs front and rear. I changed them myself. The spring swap made a huge improvment in absorbing bumps and overall handling, especially when loaded, 2 up for long distance touring. Worth every penny that I paid for them and a fully recommended upgrade.

Having owned my 2017 AT DCT for almost 2 years now I feel the time has come to repeat the process. I don't upgrade anything on a bike, especially tyres or suspension, until I have put in some distance on the bike, otherwise how would I know if it's an improvement over what I had or not? But the AT suspension seems a little weak/soft to me, especially the rear.

The HyperPro spring kit I have ordered will raise the bike by 20mm and will no doubt give me similar positive results/smiles that they did when I did the same to the Varadero all those years ago. For sure it will help when the bike is fully loaded.

I'm in the UK at present and will hand carry the items back to Canada with me.

Ordered from Rugged Roads in the UK: https://ruggedroads.co.uk/

1 x Hyperpro Shock Spring (Raises height by 20mm & eliminates excess sag) - CRF1000 (2016/2017)
Product no.: SP-HO10-SSB032-B £70.42

1 x Hyperpro Fork Spring Kit (Raises height by 20mm & eliminates excess sag) - CRF1000 (2016/2017) £110.00
Product no.: SP-HO10-SSA032

By the way, my previous experience with Rugged roads has shown me that their customer service is great! They will ship overseas from the UK also.
 

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Please share your experience once you install them.

I also had 3 Varaderos in the past; 2 of them were fitted with HP springs. While it absolutely improved the stability of the bike, it did considerably affect the comfort making the bikes stiffer. I am very interested to see if the same happens with the AT.
 

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I'm curious, too. I do a lot of touring and I'd like to know what you think it improves or how it changes the overall ride. I've also had a Varadero and it was a plush suspension but tended to float a bit at higher speeds in curves.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Please share your experience once you install them.

I also had 3 Varaderos in the past; 2 of them were fitted with HP springs. While it absolutely improved the stability of the bike, it did considerably affect the comfort making the bikes stiffer. I am very interested to see if the same happens with the AT.
With my Vara, it did as you have experienced. With the HyperPro's I noticed that smaller bumps were better absorbed but the springs were generally more stiff, resisted bottoming out which the stock Vara springs, when fully loaded for 2 up touring. For me, overall handling was improved over the stock OEM setup. They were worth the outlay.

With my 2017 AT DCT I'm expecting similar results. I'm certainly looking for the suspension to stiffen up under heavy loads/bumpy terrain compared to the stock OEM setup. I weigh 94Kg by the way.

I'll get back to you for sure, but I'm away for about another month. I'll fit them when I return and post a report.
 

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Yes please. I’m the same weight as you so very interested to hear. Would like to know also if you’ve tweaked the stock suspension and at what values for now, while you wait to install the hp.thanks
 

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@james.mc Any updates on your suspension? We're getting ever closer to the end of the riding season here and I might do my suspension in the winter. Has it been a worthy modification?
 

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I have HP progressive springs on the front of my 2017 manual AT. It is an improvement as I no longer have the "stiction" in the front (front used to sort of get stuck in a non fully extended position and then extend upon takeoff). The overall effect is a firmer, more direct feel in the front. I weigh 182 lbs.
 

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Thanks for your update. I weigh around 200 pounds. I mostly would do the springs upgrade to give a bit more height and sag when the bike is loaded for touring. Otherwise, the stock suspension has done everything I've asked it.

I have HP progressive springs on the front of my 2017 manual AT. It is an improvement as I no longer have the "stiction" in the front (front used to sort of get stuck in a non fully extended position and then extend upon takeoff). The overall effect is a firmer, more direct feel in the front. I weigh 182 lbs.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
@james.mc Any updates on your suspension? We're getting ever closer to the end of the riding season here and I might do my suspension in the winter. Has it been a worthy modification?
The upgrade went well. The felt the same overall improvement that I did when I carried out a similar upgrade to my 2003 Honda Varadero XL1000V in Portugal years back. So this is the second time I've upgraded to HyperPro (springs only). The spring set I fitted increased the height of the bike by about 20mm. I'm 93kg (205lbs) 178cm (5' 10")
I've done about 1200km since the upgrade. The ride is smoother overall on right road/track surfaces. The front nose dip on braking has all but gone, I always thought that was a bit excessive as soon as I got the bike. Overall the bike feels more planted in general, especially at higher speeds with luggage. Whilst I was at it, I swapped out the OEM fork seals for SKF seals. My thought was I might as well upgrade those whilst the forks are off and in bits.

Tip: If you do the swap, when it comes to the rear its a bit fiddly to get the whole mono-shock out. Make sure the unit is adjusted so that it's as short as possible and remove the adjustment knob. It'll come out more easily then. Same to install once the new spring has been added.
 

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For removing my shock on the ATAS I found after a lot of frustration and skinned knuckles that just pulling the shaft on the swing-arm made it really easy.
 

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I also put the HP spring onto my rear shock , hardest bit was compressing without correct tools . As for the ride it is a totally different bike so much better , I am now considering doing the forks too.
 

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I'm planning the same upgrade (HyperPro rear spring) on my MY2018 AT.
I've seen HyperPro makes 3 different spring models for our bike: a std one (part no. SP-HO10-SSB039), a +20mm one (part no. SP-HO10-SSB041) and a +20mm heavy loads (part no. SP-HO10-SSB042). The +20mm (SP-HO10-SSB041), which looks like the most frequently chosen, is also called "preferred kit" by the producer.
Is there some reason for that description? Why is it "preferred"? Is there any contraindications in choosing the spring which keep the standard seat height?
TIA
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
I'm planning the same upgrade (HyperPro rear spring) on my MY2018 AT.
I've seen HyperPro makes 3 different spring models for our bike: a std one (part no. SP-HO10-SSB039), a +20mm one (part no. SP-HO10-SSB041) and a +20mm heavy loads (part no. SP-HO10-SSB042). The +20mm (SP-HO10-SSB041), which looks like the most frequently chosen, is also called "preferred kit" by the producer.
Is there some reason for that description? Why is it "preferred"? Is there any contraindications in choosing the spring which keep the standard seat height?
TIA
+20mm or not?
I feel that the +20mm of height offers less chance of suspension bottoming out under heavy baggage load on rough terrain, which is a comment I've read a few times about standard OEM suspension. Must admit it never happened to me. Pretty sure Honda Tweaked the ATAS for similar reasons.

With the standard HP part SP-HO10-SSB039, I would suggest that general handling would improve, but there may still be a risk of bottoming out under heavy load conditions.
If the reality of your riding is that it's 90% made up roads and unmade roads (logging roads etc.) then maybe the standard unit would be fine.
If you ever commute, or ride a lot with no baggage, I suspect the HP 'heavy load' unit would be pretty **** stiff and unforgiving when not loaded up with baggage.
To me the +20mm lift part no. SP-HO10-SSB041seems the best compromise and probably explains why it is their best selling unit for the AT.

Seat height
At my height 178cm (5' 10") the standard OEM suspension was fine, seat height height wise, and I always rode with the seat in the normal/high setting. After the +20mm lift it was starting to get too tip-toe ish for me at a stop, or when I was astride it and needed to roll the bike back, so I've taken to running with the seat in the low position.
So, for me, the end is result is slightly taller bike, a notable improvement in handling but feel better with seat in low setting.

On the side stand - I run with a Camel-Toe side stand from Camel ADV products. There was no need to lengthen it after the 20mm lift.

Other notes:
Ideally you'll need a bike sized spring compressor for the rear shock. I had one that worked (for a car). It was a little big, but managed to compress the spring without launching anything into orbit!! I used small ratchet straps and hooks for the front forks.
If you are doing the front forks you might as well swap the OEM seals out for SKF or similar quality. I planned to do mine as a matter of course. When I pulled the forks apart I did notice some corrosion on the seal spring on one of the OEM seals, which would have failed eventually.
I was in the UK for a while so brought two sets of these home with me for my 2017 DCT: https://ruggedroads.co.uk/SKF-Fork-Seal-Kit-CRF1000-Africa-Twin-2016
 

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@james.mc

Thanks a lot for your comprehensive comment.
In the meantime I contacted HyperPro support people and they confirmed me that standard and +20mm height springs have the same mechanical characteristics, only the height is different. So, in term of driveability gains they are equivalent. However the +20mm height will change the "trail" measure of the bike so the bike will be more maneuverable (at cost of a little less stability, maybe).
I usually ride alone, sometimes with luggage. I plan to do bigger trips so luggage weight will increase. That's why I was considering spring upgrade (I'm 85 kg). I've also tested an Africa Twin with the AirTender device installed on the rear shock and I was astonished by the good change the bike had: much firmer, no rear-front weight transfers, much higher corner speed.... it was almost like another bike! The AirTender is based on a much firmer spring comparing to the OEM one.
At 34" inseam I don't think I will have problem with a +20mm height spring (I currently touch ground with full feet), so probably it would be the best choice for me, too.
Thanks again.
 

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The +20mm has the same characteristics as the standard. The distance between the ground and your seat will be 20mm higher. I have installed the +20 version on my bike (8000 km /2016 number 342) by myself. The rear is very easy to do if you have the right tools. I was lucky that the car garage here on the corner has a universal compression set with inserts for small cars which fitted on the spring of my AT. It was 5 minute work. The front was more work therefor you need the fork compression tool which you also can buy at Hyperpro. I did it with a screwdriver and wrench 10mm. Before I started I could hear the oil when shaking the tube. It sound like there was air in it. So draining the oil it was dirty with grains in it. I looked inside the tube to see the wearing but not was wrong it looks good. It is important that you pump the oil so that there is no air any more in the tube before you close it. I didn’t change my seals because the looked still good. This whole replacement took 1 and a half hour. The adjustment of the springs is written in the guide from hyperpro and on the box you can find your sag.
The best to do it is with 2 people. The first ride was a difference the bike has more contact with the road it gives a better feeling. To be sure or I was mounted and adjusted on the right way I visit Hyperpro here in the Netherland. They tested the springs and the sag was good only the rebound was not right so they changed it on the back. This was a 5 minutes job. Now the bike ride good with my weight (115kg) the oem spring where to weak. The guy from Hyperpro told me that change oil on a regular based is a must to keep your seals and fork tubes in a good condition. The reason that the oil gets dirty is due to the fact that the spring is sliding against the inner side of the fork tube when it is compressed (spring looks like banana) that gives the grain which you see in the oil.
I am very happy with this improvement.
 
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