Riding a motorcycle is a lot of fun, and for many enthusiasts, riding bigger and faster bikes as they improve their riding skills adds to the fun. Unfortunately, many of the more powerful bikes have seat heights that make them difficult (if not impossible) for people with a shorter inseam to safely handle. Fortunately, riders can lower some motorcycles enough that even if the rider can't flatfoot the bike, she can at least get one foot down. The Kawasaki ZX6R is one such bike.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Motorcycle stand
- Floor jack
- Lowering links
- 4mm Allen wrench
- 14mm socket
- 17mm socket
Put the bike on the stand and remove the lower fairings. The lower fairings require a 4mm Allen wrench to remove the six fasteners that hold the fairings to the lower portion on the bike.
Loosen the nuts holding the stock links. Do not try to remove the links or the bolts holding the links in place yet.
Place the floor jack under the bike's frame and carefully lift it until you have removed the tension on the rear shock. Don't go too far or you will lift the bike out of the stand (causing it to fall), but you need to go far enough that the rear shock has no load on it.
Remove the top nut and slide the bolt out. If the bolt feels tight, lower the jack slightly and try again. Make small adjustments in the height of the jack until the bolt will slide out without you having to exert a lot of force on it. Once the top bolt comes out, the bottom bolt should also come out fairly easily.
Install the lowering links. Start with the top bolt. Put the nut on, but leave it only finger tight. Lower the jack until the bike compresses enough so that the lower bolt holes on the links line up with the holes on the bike's swing arm pivot. Install the lower bolt and finger tighten that bolt as well. Lower and remove the jack, then fully tighten the nuts.
Tips and warnings
- As you remove bolts and fasteners from the bike, place them in a plastic baggy and label the baggy so you know where the fasteners go, and what size tool they require. This will prevent you from losing parts, and save you time in choosing the correct tool to replace them later on.
- Using a compound that will hold nuts in place regardless of vibration will make your ride safer and prevent possible lost parts.
- If you do not know the parts of your bike, make sure you have a manual with you so you can correctly identify the links.
- When a bike has lowering links, it can prevent the bike from leaning enough on the stock kickstand unless you choose your parking area to allow the kickstand to sit in a low spot.
- Using lowering links only lowers the back. It will change the handling if you do not lower the front forks also. Some people do not feel the difference is great enough to worry about, other people prefer also lowering the front.
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