This will be our last project update for the year but it’s a pretty big one. Not only have we installed new rearsets, a new chain and rear sprocket, we’ve also made our most important (and most expensive) modification to date – a new fully adjustable rear shock absorber from German manufacturer Wilbers.
A shock from Öhlins is probably the way 99 per cent of Ninja 300 riders go, but we decided on the Wilbers for two reasons. One, it came in slightly cheaper than the options from Öhlins, but has a five year warranty. Secondly, Öhlins has been having a few issues of late with numerous recalls, so we felt the options from Wilbers was a safer bet at this stage.
Just like the option from Öhlins, our Wilbers 631 shock offers numerous adjustment options and comes from the factory for my weight. The unit has 22 clicks for altering rebound damping and 22 high and 22 low speed compression settings in separate ports. Installation was very straightforward with the unit being a straight swipe size wise – no cutting or modification to the bike was necessary.
Our other big change was in installation of Vortex rearsets. They’re not cheap but they do just ooze quality and feel fairly indestructible. The amount of adjustablity is also fantastic and we’ll be modifying the shifter for reverse (or GP shift) in the near future thanks to the extra shift rod that Vortex supplies.
We also replaced our OEM sprocket with a lightweight aluminium Vortex sprocket which saves a few hundred grams of weight. Our OEM chain has also been replaced with a race spec one from RK. Yes, definitely overkill for a little Ninja, but it looks good. A battery tender has also be installed and we’ve replaced the OEM air filter with a nice aftermarket one from BMC.
Early next year, we’ll start to fit our race glass and begin painting which will allow us to develop some new skills.