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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
All I really wanted was a Bonnie with cast wheels & tubeless tyres. Then in 2009 they made one, but it's not the same.
The suspension on my 09 Black is terrible especially on the back country roads where the bike otherwise excels. I thought it was the shocks, so I put on a pair of Ikons, shorter ones for this model, just like the OEM ones. Result: better but still bad.
So then I borrowed a friend's surplus 08 T100 shocks, which are about 6mm (1/4") longer. Result: just as bad. My back is taking a pounding and I regularly get bumped right out of the saddle.

So what's the problem if 08 shocks don't make it ride like an 08 bike? Is it just the rigidity of the rear wheel? Does it have a shorter swingarm? What?

If 08 and earlier bikes are much better, perhaps I've bought the wrong model.

Anyone got any good ideas? I would especially like to hear from anyone who owns or rides both bikes.

Dave
Cow Flat NSW
Australia
 

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That is puzzling. I would have thought putting the 08 shocks on would have made a larger difference. Could it be the seat? I think they took some of the padding out to make the seat height lower? My 09 T100 with the standard shocks and seat is quite comfortable.
 

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The stock shocks aren't great on any of them.

Get a nice pair of Ikons or summink on there of whatever length you like, and a different seat - man you'll love it. Change springs in the forks too - it becomes a dream, no worries.
 

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Don't know what the problem is, but I replaced my seat with a Thruxton gel and the ride is more comfortable.

The shocks are stock; the bike still has its handling woes, but my butt is way more comfortable.

Perhaps a seat will help with the discomfort.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Get a nice pair of Ikons or summink on there
Umm, thanks Prop, but if you recheck my post you will see that that was the first thing I did, visiting the factory to get them to make the first ever set for the 09 models. But I will try a stock T100 seat next.

Dave
 

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I have an '09 SE, and I feel your pain... i've had to turn around and abort mission on a few country roads because the ride became intolerable, though on smooth tarmac the handling is wonderfully sharp and accurate, maybe that's the trade-off, if so, i'm more than willing to accept the occasional jolts. i've unfortunately never ridden the '08 or prior models with the progressive rear springs, so I'm unable to comment on difference in ride quality. also, I'm fairly lightweight at 5'10 and 163lbs, i'm sure it's less of an issue for 'healthier' riders... anyone out there who've ridden/owned '08 or prior and have experienced the new cast wheel Bonnie that could comment on ride difference?
 

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At 100 miles I replaced the stock shocks on am 09 cast wheel Bonnie with Progressive 412's in length of 13", which is stock on the new cast wheel Bonnie and 1/2" shorter that stock on the spoked Bonnies. Regular duty springs as this is my wife's bike and she's at 120lbs. These made a big difference-but the ride is still on the firm side-just so you know. She no longer gets thrown out of the saddle but says that on really crappy roads it's no Caddilac, either. She reports that it's a fair trade between a bit more comfort and keeping the great handleing the bike now has.
I think you can get the same shocks with a "lighter" weight spring. Sean at British Customs was a big help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Another thought I've had is that maybe they are just too short. Experimenting with springs seems to show that there's no happy medium between too stiff (bounced out of the saddle because the springs don't compress and absorb) and too soft (bounced out of the saddle because the springs compress to the bump stops).

I emphasise that on smooth highways it's fine. It's on the bumpier back roads that I have the problem. Like Tri-Bonn I had to abort a ride last Sunday because it was so miserable. I don't care what the ride is like when I'm scraping my knee-sliders on track days :) because I don't do that sort of riding.

Perhaps the extra (1 inch) length and movement of the Thruxton shocks would allow the compromise I'm looking for - not Cadillac, just comfort - but I don't know what that would do to the seat height and the front fork rake.

DaveO
 

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I guess you have to reduce down what the differences are between the T-100 and address them. I will say I believe the ride on my new T-100 is excellent in stock form. I am 190# btw. You likely want to go to T-100 shock length...don't think you need to go to Thrux length. You may also want to address the front springs and oil as there maybe an interaction front to rear. The rear wheel is both shorter and alloy and to my mind that seems to be the greater disparity between models. I would experiment with air pressures as they generally make a fair contribution to ride quality. I don't think the swingarm is different between bikes. I frankly am quite surprised by the difference between the base Bonny and T100 in ride quality as I believe the Triumph engineers should have tuned this out. I would change that sliver for a seat they put on your bike however...or cut off the foam and place an underlisting of foam under the existing pad.
The bike is clearly worth the search to improve its ride quality. You could even consider a lower aspect ratio rear tire. At the end of the day, that maybe the biggest disconnect. A shorter sidewall has very harsh consequences in terms of ride. A simple calculation would tell you if the T100 has more rear sidewall height than your rear tire.
Good Luck,
George
 

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Impressive the way Icon has been quick to come out with a new model shock so quickly. If/when I need new shocks I will look there first.
 

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Now you see I've looked at them and thought great excellent, I won't have long to wait.

My next thought was I wonder if they will do them in blue or cream to match the SE colours!!

Is that a bit too girly? or does anyone else think they would look great?

Norman Hyde just quoted me £229. Plus Vat @15%
 
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