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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I thought I'd post some information about the Matris F15 (F15T122K) fork kit, along with the Bitubo WME02V1 rear shocks (OEM height, 351mm) that I just installed on my 2017 T120.

I purchased both items from Carpi Moto in Italy and after complying with their payment policy regarding using a Verified by Visa qualified credit/debit card, everything arrived in about 4 weeks, or so.

The fork kit is of high quality and very easy to install, though you need to have some skills and certain tools. The instructions are very basic and require some thought to understand their meaning.

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I removed the front wheel and fender. Note the routing of the ABS sensor wire on the left hand fork leg as it is positioned as shown in the photo below. I also separated the brake calipers from the outer fork tubes.

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Then I removed the fork assemblies from the upper and lower yokes by loosening the pinch bolts and sliding the forks out the bottom of the lower yoke. I loosened the fork cap nuts prior the loosening the lower pinch bolts. And, I recommend marking the assemblies as right and left. It will matter which is which, though the presence of the ABS sensor mount tab is an indicator, as well.

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After removing the cap nut, I drained each fork assembly of it's fluid. The kit comes with new fork oil. Some of the components of the stock fork guts will come out when you invert the forks to drain.

It is now time to remove the bolted in fork cylinders. I was able to easily remove one of the lower cap bolts with an 8mm allen wrench, but with the other fork, the bolt just spun. I needed to use an air impact wrench but didn't have an 8mm allen socket that was long enough to reach the nut through the axel boss of the outer fork tube. I decided to cut one of my 8mm allen wrenches and fit it into a socket that I happened to have. Using an air impact ( or electric impact ) wrench makes short work of removing certain bolts, including the lower fork cap bolt. I did need to jam a piece of wood into the fork to prevent the lower cylinder from turning. I used a piece of oak landscaping stake that I happened to have.

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Once the internal cylinders are removed make note of which goes to which fork leg. They are not the same. The length of the lower cylinder portion which holds the top-out spring is different on each one.

Now I thoroughly flushed out the hollow fork assemblies with mineral spirits, making sure they were both very clean. My forks are off of a nearly new bike, so I didn't feel the need to separate the upper and lower tubes for seal or bushing replacement. If you have significant miles on your bike, this may be a step you will wish to take. It's rather easy to do.

After ensuring that the inside of the tubes were clean and dry, I transferred the top-out springs to the new fork cartridges and installed them into their respective fork legs in the reverse sequence of removing the stock innards, tightening the lower cap nuts by hand (no impact gun!). It is very important that the correct cartridges go into each of the forks. The right hand fork gets the cartridge that has the SHORTER of the top-out spring holder. This is the new Matris COMPRESSION cartridge. The left hand fork gets the cartridge with LONGER top-out spring holder. This is the new Matris REBOUND cartridge. See photo.

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Note the difference in the lower ends. The cartridges go to each leg as shown.

Now, per the supplied instructions (no spring in place and cartridge rod fully compressed), I added the the Motorex 5W fork fluid, pumping the cylinder to get any bubbles out. I noticed that if I tilted the assembly while adding the fluid, it would bubble out a lot of air. Each leg will take just under 1/2 of the bottle to achieve the recommended oil height of 160mm from the top of the extended inner fork tube.

It was then the simple matter of installing the springs and caps, making note of the position of the washers (lower end of spring) and upper spring collar. These items are clearly shown in the instructions supplied by Matris.

That's it. The forks are then installed on the bike in the reverse of the disassembly. I did have some difficulty with the alignment of the headlight bracket tubes and their rubber grommets, but after a little fiddling, it went together properly.

Included in the Matris instructions are the initial settings for compression (15 clicks out from fully closed), rebound (15 clicks out from fully closed) and preload (6 turns in from fully open/unloaded). My kit came with the standard 9.0 N/mm spring rate springs. These springs ended up just right for my geared up weight of 198 pounds. They are the standard springs for the kit, by the way (If you are of significantly different weight, either plus, or minus, you would need to specify this on order. It is easy to get other springs upon initial order. Afterward, it's harder and time consuming.).

In setting up the sag, I needed to reduce the spring preload 1 full turn for a total of 5 turns in from fully open/unloaded. This gave me 20mm of static sag and an additional 20mm of rider sag, for a total of 40mm.

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I also installed Bitubo shocks. I'll post another write up about that.


Cheers.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Sorry, no matter how hard I try, the site is not allowing me to post some of the accompanying photos.
To say I am frustrated is an understatement!
Any suggestions?

Update: I heard from the moderators. There is an 8 picture limit, so I deleted some pics and split the Bitubo install into another post.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
By the way, with the standard Matris settings the ride is a little firm but very refined. I didn't have much time with the stock suspension, but enough to realize refined is not the applicable adjective. It was harsh and non-compliant. I just assumed it was because it was new.
The Matris stuff is new, but completely different, in a good way. I hadn't set the sag, etc. before my first ride. I will report back when I do a test ride with the proper set-up in place.
The Bitubo shocks were installed as well, albeit with as delivered settings. The rear sag settings were not set up, either. It had too much preload as delivered, so I expect improvement now that both ends have proper sag settings
Can't wait!
 

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By the way, with the standard Matris settings the ride is a little firm but very refined. I didn't have much time with the stock suspension, but enough to realize refined is not the applicable adjective. It was harsh and non-compliant. I just assumed it was because it was new.
The Matris stuff is new, but completely different, in a good way. I hadn't set the sag, etc. before my first ride. I will report back when I do a test ride with the proper set-up in place.
The Bitubo shocks were installed as well, albeit with as delivered settings. The rear sag settings were not set up, either. It had too much preload as delivered, so I expect improvement now that both ends have proper sag settings
Can't wait!
Cool. Glad to hear this.
I do not know why I am getting so much push back from members here about what I say is, the overly harsh ride on the T120s!! Well, on my T120 and the demo rides I've done.
I've owned dozens of motorcycles over many many years and I hold firm my impression that the the T120, is a rather poor example of factory choices in what should be comfortable suspension tuning for a bike like this.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Cool. Glad to hear this.
I do not know why I am getting so much push back from members here about what I say is, the overly harsh ride on the T120s!! Well, on my T120 and the demo rides I've done.
I've owned dozens of motorcycles over many many years and I hold firm my impression that the the T120, is a rather poor example of factory choices in what should be comfortable suspension tuning for a bike like this.
I agree. My opinion of the stock suspension of a T120 is very low. It is harsh and primitive. Look at the picture showing the stock internals. They are really low quality and remind me of a bike from the 70's or 80's. My previous bike was a Street Triple R with very high quality suspension. There was no comparison between ride quality, and the Street is much more of a sportbike, not a comfort standard.

I think Triumph did great with the engine, chassis and all of the electronic goodies. In my opinion, they really dropped the ball with the suspension. Undoubtedly to keep costs within a certain range. I also think that owners who laud it's stock suspension might not know what good suspension is like. Comments about waiting for it to break in just mean that it needs a degree of wear, and looser tolerances, to feel less harsh. Good suspension works properly right from the start. I'm not trying to start a controversy, Just my opinion based upon 45 years of experience and living through the evolution of motorcycle technology since the 60's. No offense intended!
 

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Cool. Glad to hear this.
I do not know why I am getting so much push back from members here about what I say is, the overly harsh ride on the T120s!! Well, on my T120 and the demo rides I've done.
I've owned dozens of motorcycles over many many years and I hold firm my impression that the the T120, is a rather poor example of factory choices in what should be comfortable suspension tuning for a bike like this.
I agree. My opinion of the stock suspension of a T120 is very low. It is harsh and primitive. Look at the picture showing the stock internals. They are really low quality and remind me of a bike from the 70's or 80's. My previous bike was a Street Triple R with very high quality suspension. There was no comparison between ride quality, and the Street is much more of a sportbike, not a comfort standard.

I think Triumph did great with the engine, chassis and all of the electronic goodies. In my opinion, they really dropped the ball with the suspension. Undoubtedly to keep costs within a certain range. I also think that owners who laud it's stock suspension might not know what good suspension is like. Comments about waiting for it to break in just mean that it needs a degree of wear, and looser tolerances, to feel less harsh. Good suspension works properly right from the start. I'm not trying to start a controversy, Just my opinion based upon 45 years of experience and living through the evolution of motorcycle technology since the 60's. No offense intended!
I agree with both of you regarding the T120 suspension. My Matris fork kit is on the way and look forward to a better ride ahead. I've got Hagon 2810's on the rear and the jury is still out on how effective they will be. I'll wait to see how the combo works for me before I render a final judgement.
Some suspension guru was quoted as saying, "The best you have ridden, is the best you know", and that is true. The suspension seems to be the only real weak spot on what otherwise is really a fantastic bike.
 

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I agree with both of you regarding the T120 suspension. ..... I've got Hagon 2810's on the rear and the jury is still out on how effective they will be. I'll wait to see how the combo works for me before I render a final judgement.

Some suspension guru was quoted as saying, "The best you have ridden, is the best you know", and that is true. The suspension seems to be the only real weak spot on what otherwise is really a fantastic bike.
I've got a pair of Hagon 2810s on order. I know they are not very high tech in their approach to dampening. I really wanted quick set preload adjust with fully adjustable and I've had a heck of a time finding that, pretty much doesn't exist for these bikes, at least yet. There's no way I'm going to muck about with threaded rings every time my wife hops on the back.

At any rate, I'd like to hear your impressions etc. on the 2810s. I have ridden some pretty well suspended bikes and I'm hoping I won't be too disappointed.

I REALLY wish I'd been able to buy a Bonnie R version with higher grade suspension etc.
 

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I would have to agree on the suspension being the weak link on my T120. It easily bottoms out when pushed into a corner and I have the shocks set a maximum stiff. New suspension will definitely be in my girls future. I'll wear the stock stuff out a little first though.....nice write up by the way!


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Discussion Starter #10

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Finished my Matris install last night and was able to put about 50 miles on them tonight. The fork action is much more civilized than the stock set up. I'm using the recommended settings by Matris and currently have about 45 mm of rider sag. I'll probably put a couple of hundred miles on them before trying to fine tune them.
 

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I've got a pair of Hagon 2810s on order........ I have ridden some pretty well suspended bikes and I'm hoping I won't be too disappointed.
To follow up on the Hagon 2810 shocks, I'm quite pleased with them! I requested the 18kg spring which is the next lighter than the 20kg spring they ship with. A buddy had advised me the 20kg spring is almost too stiff, and after riding with the 18kg I'd have agreed. I'm about 215 lbs fully geared up and the 18kg is perfect. I ended up with the dampening set at 4 clicks in from full soft and it matches the spring rate very well.

I have not had a chance to ride 2 up with them yet, maybe this weekend! I'm expecting to go to the middle pre-load setting (they are big jumps) and probably 6 clicks in on the dampening.

My assessment of them is that they are about 85-90% of an Ohlins (or equal high quality fully adjustable) setup which considering the price I feel is excellent. The dampening ratio (comp/rebound ratio is fixed) is a good choice and by increasing/decreasing it over all I was able to find a setting that worked well. You can feel the difference with a single click and there are 10 total.

I have a fully adjustable Ohlins on my Guzzi so that's my point of reference. The main difference I think is how they deal with sharp bumps, the Ohlins is more refined as one might expect given it's superior tech. But the Hagon 2810s are not bad at all and I don't feel motivated to improve on them for this bike.

I'd recommend them for anybody who's not looking to build a full on sport bike canyon shredder. The Bonnie is not that bike but it's no slouch when the twisties begin.

I had improved the stock forks some by switching to 5w oil, it definitely helped. But.... now the forks are feeling "less than" with the new shocks and I might start thinking about this Matris kit again. I'd like to hear more feedback from those who've had a chance to put some miles on the Matris fork setup.
 

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By the way, with the standard Matris settings the ride is a little firm but very refined. I didn't have much time with the stock suspension, but enough to realize refined is not the applicable adjective. It was harsh and non-compliant. I just assumed it was because it was new.
The Matris stuff is new, but completely different, in a good way. I hadn't set the sag, etc. before my first ride. I will report back when I do a test ride with the proper set-up in place.
The Bitubo shocks were installed as well, albeit with as delivered settings. The rear sag settings were not set up, either. It had too much preload as delivered, so I expect improvement now that both ends have proper sag settings
Can't wait!


Thanks for this great feedback! I'm about to do the same mod based on your experience but I still have a question: Would you have change the SAE 10 that comes with the Matris for a SAE 5 or a blend of the two?
 

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Finished my Matris install last night and was able to put about 50 miles on them tonight. The fork action is much more civilized than the stock set up. I'm using the recommended settings by Matris and currently have about 45 mm of rider sag. I'll probably put a couple of hundred miles on them before trying to fine tune them.
Please post your thoughts after you've spent a little time on them and tuned them to your liking.

I'm starting to think about these now.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for this great feedback! I'm about to do the same mod based on your experience but I still have a question: Would you have change the SAE 10 that comes with the Matris for a SAE 5 or a blend of the two?
I have set the sag at both ends and, after some testing, set the preload back to the settings exactly as specified by Matris and Bitubo. The ride is superb, refined and controlled. I used the fork oil, and quantity, recommended by Matris. The oil is Motorex Racing Fork oil. It is 5W, by the way.

I am very happy with this set-up and recommend it whole heartedly. I weigh 205 pounds with gear and my fuel tank was near full during my tests.

Good luck, I'm sure you will love the change.
 

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Well I anted up for the Matris cartridge kit and got it installed last weekend.

Most of the installation was very well covered by the OP. So what I'll try do is add some additional info to it.

My comments on the installation.

1. It's certainly easier to do one fork at a time while the other holds the headlight etc in place. But be careful as the new cartridges are not the same left to right and they are specific which goes where. You do reuse the stock topout springs, simple swap.



Here's a comparison shot. The stock right side cartridge is on top and the Matris on the bottom. You can see the small top out spring installed on the Matris cartridge on the bottom end.



2. It's easier to crack loose the bottom retaining bolts for the OEM cartridge/insert while the fork legs are still connected with the fender mount/fork brace and under spring tension. You will need an extended length 8mm hex driver, at least say 3" long, 4" to be safe. They are pretty tight. Finish tightening them the same in reverse when the fender brace is installed again. I used the orange axle wrench/tire spoon for the caps, they are 32mm. The preload adjuster is 19mm.



3. Holding the left side lower insert from spinning is a bitch as it's way down in there and there's nothing to hold it from spinning. I ended up using a steel pry bar I had that is sharpened on one end with 4 flats. The tapered sharp edges were perfect for biting into the lower insert enough to hold it from spinning while I backed out the retaining bolt. When I took out the lower insert it showed no damage at all from the bar I used.



4. It's easier to pump the dampening rods up/down to bleed the air bubbles out if you connect a section of rubber hose to the threaded end where the fork cap threads on.

5. You are supposed to measure the fork oil level with the forks collapsed and the dampening rod completely pushed in so you really need something to pull it back out.

6. I measured the level very carefully and ended up putting 340cc of oil in each leg. It comes with 1L of Motorex 5w fork oil.



Some shots of them installed.





My comments on the ride after installation follow Kevhunts pretty closely. There's a big improvement in quality of dampening, much more fluid and you can finally totally adjust it to suit your preference and riding conditions. I have zero reservation about recommending it to anybody considering a serious upgrade.

I'm about 205-210 fully geared up depending on gear of course. I prefer a little more supple than a little more firm but with good control.

I played around with the adjustments starting with the recommended settings of;

Preload = 6 turns in
Compression = 15 clicks
Rebound = 15 clicks

I'm currently at;
Preload = 5 1/8 turns in
Compression = 12 clicks
Rebound = 14 clicks

This is for all around mixed riding. If I were to do a more sporty canyon type ride I'd probably bump preload to 5 1/2 and compression to 13, possibly 14.

I was very happy to find that even a 1/4 of preload makes a difference and you can feel 1 click in either comp or rebound. So there's a very wide range of adjustment available. In addition to the cap preload adjust you can set the lower spring collar in 1 of 3 settings though it requires pulling the cartridge up to do so. It comes set in the middle position.
 

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Hi All,

Where's the best place to source the Matrix setup from the USA?

Secondly - had either of you tried the progressive spring swap prior to upgrading the Matrix setup?
 

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Hi All,

Where's the best place to source the Matrix setup from the USA?

Secondly - had either of you tried the progressive spring swap prior to upgrading the Matrix setup?
I bought my Matris kit from Bella Corse. There might be other places in the States. I think they might be cheaper from CarpiMoto but not in the States.

I didn't bother with the progressive springs as I really wanted to improve the dampening and have adjustability.

I had changed to 5w oil which helps for sure. If you do change the oil for dampening reasons just do the right leg as there is no dampening system in the left leg at all.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Tapatalk
 

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I also think that owners who laud it's stock suspension might not know what good suspension is like.
Yes, it's not a sport bike. At 165 lbs, I have no preload and my sag is 30 mm. The shocks are a bit stiff and it could do better on bumps but otherwise I have no problem with it. I ride the bike in town and on 50-70 mph roads around the town, I'm not a speed racer, and have survived 48 years of riding. I've had Progressive suspensions front and back on two Rockets and a T-Bird. With these heavy bikes, better front springs made a noticeable difference for me. The Progressive shocks with standard springs were always too stiff for me. I don't experience any dive on hard stops with the T120 or diving or wallowing in turns. I had no luck with manual dampening adjustment on Progressive 418's on a Rocket. The 440's and more current 444's have auto dampening. If 444's were available for the T120, I'd get 'em. Otherwise, my T120 is a good putt.
 

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I had the Matris F15K installed a few weeks ago, but today was the first time I had a chance to spend a day playing with the adjustments. The change in the ride is really amazing. I have mine tuned on the firm side and I can really feel it in the corners. Question for @muttskie and anyone else who has this kit: I can't really feel the clicks when I adjust the settings, and I have to be pretty careful about setting both to the same position. Have you found this, or do I have an issue with something that would make the click stops really hard to feel?
 
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