Monday, October 3, 2011

Things That Go Bump In The Night

The Caponord is not the best in the bounce department. The rear shock absorber is fair, but they have been known to blow the seal in the height adjuster. So far mine is ok, it works, and works well. I think we can leave this alone for now.

The front suspension is technically good and beefy at 50mm, but the spring rates are way way too soft. Most Caponord owners state that front suspension is on the top of their wish list for Capo improvement.

I did the obligatory look around and thought about installing Hyperpro springs. They seem to fix most issues, but not everything. Combined with a Ricor Intiminator adjustable valve the suspension is spot on. The trouble with this is the outlay is around $600 AUD for the two items, which to me seems a lot of cash to sort out an issue that isn't that bad.

I even thought about trying to source some White Power forks from a KTM 950Adventure. I know these babies are top shelf, but they are also highly sort after and can be anywhere from $1000 to $1500 second hand. OUCH!

Enter Dave Ward from Moto Italia in Emu Plains NSW. I have dealt with Dave with a few issues on the Capo and he always left me feeling confident that I wasn't being fed a whole pile of BS. Dave advertized some Genuine Aprilia Upgraded fork springs that he thought would do the trick. The price was good, and he suggested that these would solve most of my issues with the front end.
(NB if you need good honest help for your Aprilia, Ducati or Moto Guzzi, go to

I visited Moto Italia on Saturday and his colleague John fitted the springs fitted them in half an hour. I paid the man and left for a lengthy ride in the Blue Mountains of NSW.

WOW!!! what a difference. More stable in cornering, more planted on bouncy corners, fork oil now working, and most importantly the front end dive is gone. One thing that bugged me more than anything was under heavy braking the front of the bike would go down faster than a balloon with a hole in it. Now the bike is controlled when under braking conditions and the brakes are actually doing what they should instead of fighting the suspension.

My Partner also noticed a huge difference. No more banging of helmets on a quick stop. Her thigh muscles say thankyou for the new springs!

So suspension changes make a difference, a world of difference; and it doesn't have to mean you have to put up a second mortgage to do it. $200 later, I am a happy suspension sorted Caponord rider.
Loving it!

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