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Features

SETTING UP YOUR rMOTION

Staff, Photo By: Mike Lester
2/7/2013

Since we first tried it, we've been amazed at the quality of ride Ski-Doo's rMotion skidframe delivers and it just seems to keep getting better the longer you ride it.

We've had some readers asking us about the ideal setup and last week we took a 137 Renegade version and a 120-inch MX-Z for a long ride. Here's some input.

The first thing we noticed is that the usual tendency with riders is to crank up the damping settings to avoid any possibility of bottoming out the sled. You needn't worry. We've tested this suspension with aggressive riders from 190 to 250 lbs and the skid flat-out did not bottom.

What's important to understand is that those same sleds were set up with the damping adjusters (tunnel mounted versions) set at the very low setting of "one". The heaviest rider would sometimes, depending on whether they were riding the 120 or the 137 version, set it up to "two". No higher. High numbers are stiffer, low numbers are softer.

Initially we noticed some steering numbness and darting with one of the sleds. When we checked the front shocks we found someone had cranked up the compression damping clickers to their highest numerical settings. Wrong!

Once we dialed the front shocks back to "zero" or, at most, "one" in combo with the softer rear damping settings, the sled not only rode better but the darting issue mostly disappeared. (the caveat here with darting is to add the second carbide runner to the Pilot skis - Ski-Doos only come from the showroom with one runner per ski in most cases).

Once you get your front shock and rear shock dampening settings correct, you can fiddle with the other side of the tunnel - the preload adjuster.

Frankly, we found preload makes the least difference in ride quality and only affects the ride over stutter bumps while adjusting the amount of ride-in the suspension will take when the rider is aboard.

Preload is where you can fine-tune rMotion for your weight and riding style. Once again: DO NOT GO NUTS WITH TOO MUCH PRELOAD! We found softer is better here, too.

Once again, you will not bottom out this sled even at high speed when the settings are soft.

If you're having problems with handling or ride compliance, back everything off front and rear to the softest settings, even if you think you ride like Tucker Hibbert (you don't). Do this and you'll be amazed at how well this skid can work.