Friday, August 22, 2008

A Cat hat, but not the cool one

Gonna buy a Cat (as in Caterpillar heavy equipment industry) baseball hat. I don't want to say why cuz my best friend will think it's because Matt Damon from Bourne Ultimatum fame was photographed in one. Whatever.

Then this link was sent to me as a joke about my feverish Cat hat hunt.
I dare you NOT to spit your coffee all over the keyboard when you look at this. Double dare.


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

long yamaha lowering link answer of the day

Okay, here goes our non-BS, non-marketing input.

First, a lowering link or performance link is not for everyone. We don't recommend them for the following riders:

1. BIG jumpers/ditch bashers/anyone who thinks a Superman Seat Grab Backflip is part of a warm-up before a "real" ride. Why? A properly designed link will have an increased leverage ratio thus making the wheel travel easier through the arc which means the bike will be more plush on the smaller stuff like braking bumps and holes and square edge. In turn, big jumpers/ditch bashers/guys named Pastrana will find the wheel travels too easily through the travel path thus making their landing not as predictable from 40 feet up. STAY AWAY from lowering or performance links.

2. Heavy riders who need a heavier spring to begin with. Go back to the increased leverage explanation. If you're sagging out a stock spring you're surely going to sag out a YamaLink equipped bike.

3. Riders who will NOT set sag on a stock bike or reset sag with a link or if they gain/lose weight. We've sold hundreds upon hundreds of YamaLinks, and if the rider sets sag properly and tunes the suspension (go in about 1/8 on the high speed compression for more aggressive riding and the rebound 1 or 2 clicks) they love it. We've had 2 returned. One rider admitted accidentally adjusting the slow speed compression (the flat blade shock adjustment, not the big knob as required) all weekend long, while the other rider never gave a reason. We gave them both their money back....and we will do the exact same for you.

So why do some who have putzed around on a link not like them? Any of the above combinations. Or the bike was their buddy's bike which was not set up properly and it almost "killed them" on some big jump or it headshook violently or it would not turn.

Another reason is the misconception that you need to lower the forks the same amount as the rear. Not true. It can't be done on a Yamaha anyway due to the fork taper. Changes to the rake/trail affect geometry at a different rate than changes to the rear. The best most balanced bikes are lowered in the front anywhere from 5 to 10mm (6mm is approx 1/4 inch) based on terrain and setup and riding style. YamaLink equipped bikes, or bikes with a Kouba Link or Devol or Storm, can be made to handle as good or not exponentially better than a stock setup!

Add this to the reason some say don't get a lowering link. "Uh, you lose travel." Not true. A properly designed link will actually get you MORE travel because the wheel has the increased leverage to go further into the arc. "Okay, but now I'm bottoming easier." Which we say "did you adjust the high speed compression and turn in your rebound to combat the extra stored energy? Do it and get back to us and let us know what you think.

We've built links for many non-short riders and racers who "get" the fact that a link with increased leverage ratio will make their bike more planted in corners and allow them to carry more speed into, through and out of corners. There are pro mx and gncc/worcs/hare scramble/isde racers on teams of all sizes who use aftermarket links because they realize having a bike that soaks up the chop and teeth rattling tundra that also allows their bike to carry more corner speed is very, very important. Think about it: when your hands are covered in blisters and you're so tired you can't even drink water, would you rather have a bike that gets you through rocks and roots and chop smoothly...or would you rather ride a stiff board in hopes you are prepared for that gigantic triple....the one you would've rolled anyway cuz you don't dare get it out of 2nd gear for fear of racking your nards cuz you can't hold on?

Hope this helps you. We realize there are many on forums who will praise a lowering link, and a few who will light a bigger fire to say their opinion. We at YamaLink don't have the time to patrol the boards and right the ill-informed, but we truly enjoy answering questions from riders like you who want to be educated. When the black YamaLink arrives, have your shop install and set up sag for your weight with gear. Then play with the compression and rebound for a day, and decide if you should take out a little sag. And don't hesitate to call or email for any tech tips, okay?!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

yamaha lowering link for Alex's 09 YZF

Yes, the 09s are out, and yes, we brainfarted. Alex inquired about his 09 YZF and we started spouting pre-08 info.

His bike will be lowered in the rear 1.25 inches, not 1.75 inches.

A little embarrassing, but we'll rectify the minor faux pas with a website update....and make everyone write on the chalkboard 100 times "The 09s are out, the 09s are out."