MXA TEAM TESTED: PRO CIRCUIT KAWASAKI KX250F SUSPENSION REVALVE

April 6, 2011
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WHAT IS IT? A solution to any and every suspension problem that current and previous Kawasaki KX250F owners face. Face it, if you are looking for Kawasaki suspension mods, you couldn’t find a better source than the Pro Circuit team.

WHAT’S IT COST? $149.95 (fork revalve and setup); $228.78 (fork internal parts with fork cap); $149.95 (shock revalve and setup); $70.85 (shock internal parts); $224.95 (link arm); $58.85 (bladder cap kit).

CONTACT?
www.procircuit.com or (951) 738-8050.

WHAT STANDS OUT?
Here’s a list of things that stand out with the Pro Circuit KX250F suspension revalve.
 
(1) Problem.
The 2011 Kawasaki KX250F comes with Showa’s revolutionary Separate Function Fork (SFF) system, which uses one heavy fork spring as opposed to two lighter springs. There are a few flies in the SFF’s ointment: The stock 2011 KX250F fork is too soft, and the rear end wallows under heavy acceleration. Enter Pro Circuit, the experts in all KX250F matters, headed by Bones Bacon, a veritable suspension whisperer.

(2) Fork cap. Pro Circuit designed a fork cap to replace the stock Showa SFF unit. Why? The stock SFF cap has 60 total clicks of preload adjustment, while the Pro Circuit cap offers eight clicks for the same total amount of adjustment. Two clicks equates to 2-1/2 millimeters of preload. On the stock fork cap, it would take 15 clicks to equal two clicks of the Pro Circuit fork cap. It is rather difficult to feel the difference between single clicks on the Pro Circuit fork cap, let alone on the stock unit. Plain and simple, the Pro Circuit fork cap makes life easier when adjusting preload. It’s worth the dough.

(3) Forks. Bones Bacon’s goal was to help the forks stay up higher in the stroke and not dive under braking, cornering or impact. With different valving, he managed to do so, and the Showa forks became calmer and plusher. The rebound valving was lightened up so that the forks didn’t stay down in their stroke. As a result, the KX250F cornered better and didn’t dive. The biggest benefit in the Pro Circuit valving was that our KX250F soaked up chop and heavy braking with ease. We dialed in the compression to handle big G-outs and braking bumps.

(4) Shock. The first order of business was to install a Pro Circuit link arm. The 1.5-millimeter longer arm lowered the chassis and firmed up the initial curve of the shock’s stroke. Bones didn’t tinker too much with the rebound valving, but he did focus on improving the shock’s ability to stay up in the initial part of its stroke. The shock felt firmer initially, and softer through the middle and bottom of the stroke without completely bottoming out. Test riders who sat forward on the KX250F preferred running the rear axle as far back as possible to add more leverage to the swingarm (a new chain will be necessary).

(5) Performance.
Pro Circuit made a decent-handling bike much better by diagnosing the 2011 Kawasaki KX250F’s problems and solving those issues. The longer link arm is a must-have item, and the valving made the suspension plush and consistent. We admire Pro Circuit’s steadfast approach to improving on ideas; we don’t have to look any further than their fork cap to realize how serious they are about performance mods.
 
WHAT’S THE SQUAWK?
Pro Circuit’s KX250F suspension modifications aren’t cheap. Then again, you get what you pay for.

Every KX250F rider (Experts, Vets and Novices included) will benefit from Pro Circuit’s suspension services.

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