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Discussion Starter #1
I thought I'd start a thread for Nitron suspension as we seem to have one for every other manufacturer :)

When I bought my R9T I'd never ridden one but assumed it would be fun - and it is certainly is fun but the suspension was borderline dangerous. When pushing on and lent over in a corner the rear shock was compressing too much and bottoming out - a common problem according to several people I spoke to, so the bike would run wide. Having it re-valved and a new spring fitted helped a lot but it was still far too basic to provide a controlled and smooth ride. Same with the forks - although just about better than the shock, too basic to do more than keep it on the road so I had to change them.

I considered Ohlins, Wilbers and several others but selected Nitron because they're a UK company, the products are first class and at the price points they sell at, they are the best quality available. You can spend more and get better - eg Ohlins complete forks at £2500 but would they be 2.5x better than the Nitron TVT fork cartridges ? Only you can judge :)

Nitron offer a range of shocks from the R1 to Race Pro - all excellent and even the R1 is way better than the stock BMW shock and will make a massive difference. Range is here: Nitron Racing Shocks,Store,R Nine T

The fork cartridges they offer are here: Nitron Racing Shocks,Sub Page,Sub-Page

I opted for the R3 shock as it has high speed compression adjustment as well as low speed, plus TVT cartridges. I had them supplied and fitted by Darren at MCT suspension in Suffolk: .:: Online Home Of MCT Suspension ::. Darren said he's been in the industry for 25 years and is currently selling 10x as many Nitron shocks as he does Ohlins, simply because of the quality available at the price point.

So . . . what's it like ? Well - the major issues I had with the BMW suspension was that the rear shock was very harsh, almost painful, didn't control the bike properly under acceleration and seemed to be even worse when it got hot on a long ride . . . and now - the rear is velvet smooth, very well controlled, even over deep potholes and ridges. On the way home I was trying to ride over as many pot holes and general poor quality road as I could and not once did it feel harsh or uncontrolled. If it copes this well in the UK's rotten roads I can't imagine how good it will feel in France !

Same with the forks - I used to hate the way the forks dived as soon as you come off the gas and it was even worse when braking. Cornering was never confidence inspiring as the front seemed quite vague so pressing on on faster roads was not always as enjoyable as it ought to have been. Now the front doesn't dive under braking, it compresses slightly, with poor road surface still soaked up and smoothed out - just brilliant ! :)

It rained heavily on the way home so I didn't push too hard but all the way up to 100mph it was stable, smooth and so much nicer. It also turned in better - Darren said this was because more of the energy I put into the bars was going into steering the bike rather than compressing the suspension.

So overall it's no longer harsh, it's velvet smooth, very well balanced, composed and just seems to go where I steer it, the vagueness has gone, the turn in is crisp and under braking and gear change it no longer rocks and bucks.

I'll update this thread again when I've had a chance to test it in the dry and put some miles on it but for now, I just wish I'd done this when I first got the R9T - BMW screwed up with the suspension but Nitron appear to rectify that admirably :)
 

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Appreciate the feedback. Im only into my nine t for a few days but noticed the harshness you describe I just put it down to the passive system compared to my KTM active system.

I have used Nitron and Quantum on my Lotus and the Nitron is indeed a decent product but short rebuild life. What did you do regarding specifying a pillion as i do occasionally take one but dont want to compromise solo so live with the pillion consequences.

I take it the front cartridge is also spring matched. I have found stock that spring rates seem to match quite well with my 85 kg, were you much different to this.
 

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Can't agree enough about how dangerous the stock shock is, if you are riding spirited in a corner and hit any bumps.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Appreciate the feedback. Im only into my nine t for a few days but noticed the harshness you describe I just put it down to the passive system compared to my KTM active system.

I have used Nitron and Quantum on my Lotus and the Nitron is indeed a decent product but short rebuild life. What did you do regarding specifying a pillion as i do occasionally take one but dont want to compromise solo so live with the pillion consequences.

I take it the front cartridge is also spring matched. I have found stock that spring rates seem to match quite well with my 85 kg, were you much different to this.
All the shocks have adjustable pre-load and it's so easy to add more damping if you need to. Darren @ MCT gave me a card with two settings on. I'd ridden the bike up the road and back a couple of times whilst I was there and he adjusted it so I have a sort of sports setting which is a bit firmer and probably more suited to most of my riding, plus a comfort setting which is softer. Unlike OEM shocks in the past the Nitron adjusters do actually make a difference :) so I'm looking forward to having a play.

When you buy Nitron products you tell them how much you weigh in your riding kit and how you ride as well as how often you carry a pillion or heavy luggage and they spec the springs and initial settings from that. Darren is also obviously able to suggest new settings and set the sag etc. If you found the stock springs about right then tell them that and that's what you'll get.

I'm about 130Kg in riding gear so I have stronger springs in the forks and shock than standard.

I think just buying a shock and sticking it on would be a mistake - it needs to be set up and OK you can give it a go but having an expert with years of experience do it make it much easier and you can get it right in a very short time. It also means the fork settings are matched to the shock settings so the bike is balanced - that's one thing I did notice on the ride home, the whole bike is balanced whereas before it would rock when I changed gear and buck over larger bumps.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Sorry forgot to add - MCT recommend a service every 18-20 k miles, just the same as any other shock. The oil gets thin same as in OEM or Ohlins shocks.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Did your forks go back to Nitron or were they fitted out by MCT. Not keen on posting my forks tbh.
I rode to MCT and it took about 2 hours for the whole lot to be done, he did it all in his workshop, which is cleaner than any motorbike workshop I've ever seen :)
 

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Did you go for the hydraulic pre load adjustment ?

Incidentally I was mentioning to a racer mate of mine and he said there is a company that he uses called Maxton suspension near to me and very well thought. Evidently you get to talk directly to the guys who design and build the kit. Only issue for me is not well known and the colour scheme is an acquired taste and I guess unproven on a 9T
 

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Steve,

You wrote a really good review. The words the choose to describe your problems, I could really relate to them. One of my favorite twisty roads into the mountains is poor quality. I try to remember where the bumps are and avoid them but that is not always possible. A few turns I am afraid to gun it because I might lose control over a big bump while leaned over. I always thought I was a sucky rider and that is why I was struggling. But you bring up a good point, maybe the limitation is in my suspension and a little less me? You said your bike is now balance and that sounds like a dream.

Do you mind me asking how much the Nitrons cost so I can get a comparison to Ohlins?

You also said it is important to have the suspension setup done by the professionals. Do they do anything different then I would do in my garage?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Steve,

You wrote a really good review. The words the choose to describe your problems, I could really relate to them. One of my favorite twisty roads into the mountains is poor quality. I try to remember where the bumps are and avoid them but that is not always possible. A few turns I am afraid to gun it because I might lose control over a big bump while leaned over. I always thought I was a sucky rider and that is why I was struggling. But you bring up a good point, maybe the limitation is in my suspension and a little less me? You said your bike is now balance and that sounds like a dream.

Do you mind me asking how much the Nitrons cost so I can get a comparison to Ohlins?

You also said it is important to have the suspension setup done by the professionals. Do they do anything different then I would do in my garage?
You'd probably need to contact the USA distributor, looks like you're in the US ? The pricing in the US is likely to be cheaper than the UK because of the very weak pound at the moment - this is why Ohlins is massively expensive in the UK. Nitron Racing Shocks,Nitron USA Nitron UK have a shop so you can se what e have to pay for them !

The top of the range R3 rear shock (ignoring the track focused race shock) in the UK is about the same price as the basic Ohlins shock which doesn't even have a remote reservoir.

I'd only suggest getting somebody else to set them up because companies like MCT have the experience to get it right much quicker as well as keeping the front and rear balanced. From my own experience with suspension on cars and bikes, it would have taken me days to achieve what MCT did in a few hours.

Having said that, the shocks come from Nitron pre-set to a typical setting for your riding usage, style and weight so it should be possible to get at least very close to where you want it from the off.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I said I'd add some additional comments after I had a chance to ride it properly . . . .

The rear shock is so much smoother than the original BMW unit, it's a completely different experience. I did 200 miles today on various roads and I stopped even thinking about it after a while. It was never harsh, gave good control and a smooth and plush ride - just what I was after.

Overall, stability and smoothness are the key changes. It's now possible to choose a tip in point, push it down - it goes down easier and and tracks a corner really well, no more jarring or bouncing around and the nervousness has gone completely, it's like a different bike in some respects. I'd always been annoyed that the R9T didn't give me much confidence - especially approaching a corner at speed. The front was quite flighty and nervous and didn't have any precision or finesse, as if the forks were flexing or the tyre was too hard. Maybe that's not BMWs market, maybe OK, but I expected more from a £12k bike. When a £4k used ZX6 can make you feel like a TT rider (dreaming !) I do expect more precision and stability from a new BMW and it's such a pity we need to swap out major components like shocks and fork cartridges to get it.

The front diving when I come off the gas or apply the brakes has gone - the bike stays stable and controlled, very little pitching even under hard acceleration and braking and there is more feedback too, which I wasn't expecting. In a corner I can feel what the road is doing and almost what the surface is like without the bike running wide or jarring or jumping off line, even when it hits a pot hole, of which there are many in the People's Democratic Republic of Hertfordshire ;)

But the biggest surprise - which shouldn't have been a surprise really, was I was riding much faster than usual, in more comfort and using the 6k to 9k rev range to get the most acceleration more often, such was the improved stability, feel and bump absorption. Which to me is the proof of the pudding - if I was riding faster almost everywhere and in more comfort and really enjoying it - it must be good.

I'm glad I can write this - it's nice to have faith in a product by putting your money on it and finding it delivers even more than you expected ! Thank you Nitron ! I can recommend the R3 shock and he TVT forks - brilliant products.
 

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Your killing me as Im going to have to do the same now. I went out on mine today and periodically I think the suspension isnt so bad then I hit a rough patch and its absolutely miserable and makes me tired to ride it but worst of all it spoils the bike.

Thanks for the reviews because its a big leap of faith to spend £2k on something your unsure what the outcome is likely to be.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Your killing me as Im going to have to do the same now. I went out on mine today and periodically I think the suspension isnt so bad then I hit a rough patch and its absolutely miserable and makes me tired to ride it but worst of all it spoils the bike.
That's exactly why I did it ! It was really spoiling the bike and ruining my riding - I was choosing to do something else rather than ride and that was a sign that I had to do something, either sell it and buy something else or try to fix it.
 

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Legin you mention Maxton , well i have had it on mine front and back for a couple of thousand miles and it is top notch . They build suspension for a lot of road racers and have done for many years. I know they have built units for a few 9t and when i spoke to them before buying they sent a spec sheet outlining the problems with the 9t suspension and what they do to cure it . They were bob-on. They also recommend raising the back end which makes it turn quicker.
 

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Billy thats of interest to me as i can virtually walk to maxton. I will start another thread if you wouldnt mind responding so as not to disruption the nitron thread.
 

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I just installed the R3 on my bike yesterday and took it out for a quick 50 mile ride. I could instantly tell the difference in the corners and under acceleration. So much smoother and not getting bucked off the bike anymore. I still have the stock forks, but overall it's a much more pleasant ride. I highly recommend the change. Took me about 45 min to install. Really simple.
 

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I am also looking at these. I think this is the way I am going to go. How easy to fit yourself ? Do you need any special tools to swap out the shock ?

I currently only have a rear paddock stand. Is it possible to do it on this?



Cheers :)
 

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I am also looking at these. I think this is the way I am going to go. How easy to fit yourself ? Do you need any special tools to swap out the shock ?

I currently only have a rear paddock stand. Is it possible to do it on this?



Cheers :)
You need to raise the back end off the ground with no pressure on the final drive so the shock can be swapped over. A rear paddock stand wouldn't be suitable IMO.

I was lucky and had an ABBA super bike stand which lifts the rear of the bike off the ground at the swing arm pivot point (the process can be found in my modifications thread) others have resorted to using with a bursig bike lift or hoisting the rear off the bike in the air using a block and tackle or similar.

The Nitron shock is a quality piece of kit, and was on my list before I opted for Wilbers, but now that the exchange rate is crazy, if I was purchasing now I think the Nitron would have been my choice.
 
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