Race Tech Gold Valve Emulator Install

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Race Tech Gold Valve Emulator Install

Postby fzrbrandon » Fri May 15, 2009 4:15 pm

I posted this over at the Archives back in February. Figured I'd put it up here too. Yeah, I know, kind of Johnny-come-lately!

Hi everybody,

I just wanted to post up my experience / process with installing Race Tech's Gold Valve Emulators for my FZR600. In advance, I want to thank everybody who gave me help with this whole deal. It was a pretty brain-wracking thing for me because I felt that I didn't have all the info in one place. The instructions that came with them were pretty difficult since they are kind of a "one-size-fits-all" set of instructions that had me bouncing all over the place. NOT GOOD when you're really new to this stuff as I am! Anyway, my sources were as follows:

Louis (sp?) from Race Tech (cool guy! :thumbsup: )
Race Tech's instructions that came with the emulators
Race Tech's DVS Digital Valving Search (see STEP 1 below)
Yamaha George's write-up over at FZR Online (http://www.fzronline.com/wiki/doku.php? ... _emulators)
Heath's write-up on his personal site (http://heath.agdog.com/fzr/workbench/racetech/)

AND of course, the following people gave me some great info (as always!):


Thanks guys! :thumbsup:

Just FYI - A couple things to clarify regarding Race Tech's instructions:

1 - USE Figure 1 (for the diagram of the assembly)
* NOT Figure 2 which is on the back page (of my instructions anyway).
2 - FZR600 forks are Conventional Damping Rod forks and have EXTERNAL top-out springs (rebound springs are on the outside of the damping rod)
* This tidbit is useful when trying to figure out which section to read in the instructions' section titled "Step 3 Details - Determining The Preload Spacer Length"

Note that this write-up is obviously going to be biased toward my situation. The main thing being that I went with Race Tech springs. Many may choose to use the stock springs. Even with the stockers, it probably really is just a matter of swapping the correct numbers (recommended emulator spring preload, emulator spring choice (40lb or 64lb), fork spring preload, oil level). All of this info is given when running the DVS Digital Valving Search. This is a good starting point which is what I was REALLY looking for before I started this project. Some of it may be adjusted as I get more attuned to how the bike rides (with me on it!). Anyway, if you use stock springs or your numbers are way different than mine, just think it through carefully and you'll get it figured out.

BIG DISCLAIMER! Sorry I didn't take any pictures. I was really trying to just get it done in one day. So the camera was the farthest thing from my mind. The only thing I think anyone really needs to see is the damping rod hole drilling. Figure 1 in Race Tech's instructions show this pretty well. Everything else here will make sense once you have the parts in your hands.

Below I have attached a pic of what the emulators look like (the pic shows 4 but only 2 are required - 1 for each fork) as well as a photo taken by Yamaha_George that shows what the damping rods look like before and after drilling the compression holes. His photo was grabbed (with his permission) from his write-up which can be found here (over at the FZR Online Wiki):

http://www.fzronline.com/wiki/doku.php? ... _emulators

Also, here is a link to George's site that contains lots of great info regarding his 600 (and our FZR600s in general):


Thanks George!!! :thumbsup:

Anyway, without further ado, here's how I installed my Race Tech Gold Valve Emulators!

STEP 1 Go here: http://www.race-tech.com/

A - Click on Sport Bike
B - Click on DVS Valving Search (left hand side of page under Search)
C - Click on Click for Street Digital Valving Search
D - Select Yamaha > FZR600 > 88-98 (yes, it SHOULD say 89-98)
E - Click on Continue
F - Fill in all the fields in the Digtal Valving Search Registration section
G - Click on Continue
H - Fork Gold Valve Kit Selection page (Gold Valve Cartridge Emulator is only option)
I - Click on Continue
J - Bike Setup Parameters / Rider Specifications page - Choose appropriate options
K - Click on Continue

The website should now show Race Tech's recommended set-up for your forks. It also shows what they recommend for the rear shock. PRINT THIS OUT. Since this write-up is for the emulator install, here's what you should take note of (these are my results):

Emulator Valve Spring: 64lbs/in (i.e. - the yellow ones)
Number of Turns of Emulator Valve Spring Preload: 2.0 turns
Oil Level: 130mm
Recommended Fork Spring Rate: .0763 kg/mm
* I went with the .80 kg/mm since that's the lightest they have for my weight
Fork Spring Preload: 20mm
* THIS is what you need to get your "base-line" spacer length!

STEP 2 Drill damping rod's compression holes to 5/16". (see Yamaha George's pic at the bottom)

A - See Figure 1 in Race Tech's instructions and/or Yamaha_George's picture below showing the damping rods pre & post modification.
B - There are two small existing holes at the smaller diameter end of the damping rod (where the allen bolt goes to fasten the outer fork tube to the damping rod (i.e. bottom of the fork).
C - Drill the two above-mentioned holes out to 5/16" (they look huge but that's what's needed).
D - Center punch then drill (to 5/16") one more hole on each side (so two total) above the two that were just bored out. These two new holes should be 20mm above the existing ones (center to center). You should now have four 5/16" holes - two on each side (and on above the other).
E - With the damping rod laying lengthwise left to right on your bench, turn it on it's long axis 90 degrees so that two of the holes are now directly facing you and the other two are facing the opposite direction.
F - Looking straight down at the rod you should be looking at a side with no holes (the opposite side touching the table will also be hole-less).
G - Center punch then drill one hole (to 5/16") on the side facing straight up (as in F above). This hole should be 10mm (center to center) with the the two holes that were previously drilled (in step D) except offset by 90 degrees.
H - Center punch then drill one hole (to 5'16") on the opposite side. As with the hole that was just drilled (in step G), this hole should also be 10mm (center to center) with the the two holes that were previously drilled (in step D) except offset by 90 degrees.
I - You MUST make sure to de-burr & clean these holes. I used small files and some sandpaper to smooth them out as best I could (the inside edges are a real pain). Also, blow the rods out with some compressed air and push a light rag (i.e. old t-shirt type material) though them. Then check again for burrs. Repeat until you know they are clean with no chips or dust left inside.

If you were to hold the damping rod and look down it's long axis you should now have the following:

12:00 1 hole
3:00 2 holes
6:00 1 hole
9:00 2 holes

STEP 3 Rebuild forks as normal
* Follow the instructions in your Clymer / Haynes manual (you DO have one, right? :) )

STEP 4 Set spring preload on emulator

A - Use 64lb spring (yellow)
* This was what was recommended by my print-out.
B - Loosen the small lock nut all the way out without taking it off
* VERY important - I ended up stripping one out because I didn't loosen it prior to trying to turn the allen screw (preload adjuster). banghead A trip to Home Depot netted me a couple new nuts (I replaced the other one too - uuh, for the emulators, that is! )
C - Loosen allen screw until the washer just touches the spring (this equals 0 preload on the spring)
D - Turn allen screw 2 complete turns to get recommended preload.
* This was MY recommended preload. This seems fairly standard though and can be adjusted to taste.
E - Clamp the allen key that fits in the screw to your bench vise.
F - Place the emulator on the vised allen key and hold it there.
G - With your other hand, tighten the lock nut back down to the bottom of the emulator
* Make sure the emulator does not spin in your hand as you are tightening the nut because this will change the tension on the spring (i.e. the preload).

STEP 5 Measure for spacer length (to get fork spring preload)
* This step will be done with one fork and no oil yet.

A - Drop the emulator into the inner fork tube with the emulator's preload spring facing UP.
B - EXTEND the inner fork tube all the way.
C - Place the fork spring into the inner fork tube directly on top of the emulator.
D - Place BOTH washers on top of the fork spring
* If you get Race Tech springs they will come with 4 spacer washers (two for each fork). I believe stock forks only have one washer per side. Just make sure you have a washer for both ends of both spacers (i.e. 4 total).
E - Measure from the top washer (inside the inner fork tube) to the top edge of the fork tube.
* My measurement was 180.5mm (Measurement A)
F - Measure from the bottom edge of the fork cap to the bottom surface of the cap lip (the surface that makes contact with the top of the inner fork tube when the cap is tightened).
* Stock FZR600 fork caps are 15mm (Measurement B)
G - SUBTRACT Measurement B from Measurement A. This will give the spacer length for ZERO fork spring preload.
* In my case: 180.5mm - 15mm = 165.5mm
H - ADD the recommended preload given in the print-out. This is the spacer length that will give you your recommended fork spring preload.
* In my case: 165.5mm + 20mm = 185.5mm
I - Cut your spacers to the length determined by step H (above).
* In my case: 185.5mm
J - Make sure to de-burr & clean the cut ends on the spacers.

STEP 6 Assemble everything!
* This will detail one fork. Just do the other side the same way!
* Recommended oil level was 130mm from the top edge of the inner fork tube with the inner tube COMPRESSED. I believe this level is standard for FZR600s. Although it may change depending on which fork springs you are using (different size of spring = different amount of oil displacement).

A - Take out the two washers and the fork spring.
B - COMPRESS the inner fork tube all the way in.
C - Grab a small 8" by 1/4" dowel and mark the recommended oil level with a Sharpie
* Again, the recommended oil level was 130mm
* The dowel just needs to be at least a couple inches longer than what the recommended oil level will be so you can hold it. I just measured 130mm from one end of the dowel and made a red mark at that point.
D - With the fork standing straight up, slowly pour about 1/4 bottle or so of the oil into the fork tube then pump the inner fork tube to get all of the air out. You'll hear the difference once the air has been pumped out.
E - Repeat step D until you get close to your recommended oil level at which point you can SLOWLY insert your Sharpie marked dowel into the tube until it just touches the oil. You CAN see the dowel break the surface tension of the oil if you shine a Mag-Lite down into the tube. This is how you know the dowel is touching the oil.
F - With the end of the dowel just touching the oil, check to see where the little red mark on your dowel is positioned in relation to the top edge of the inner fork tube. If it's below the top you need to add a bit more oil. If it's above the top you need to grab a turkey baster and suck some oil back out. If your little red mark is positioned right at the edge of the top of the tube - CONGRATULATIONS! You should be good to go!
* Regarding the oil - When I called Race Tech they recommended 15w oil. I asked if I would be okay with 10w and I was told that it would be fine considering my weight (135lbs). So we'll see how it goes.
G - EXTEND the inner fork tube all the way.
H - Place the fork spring into the inner fork tube.
I - Place the first washer on top of the fork spring.
J - Place the spacer on top of the first washer.
K - Place the second washer on top of the spacer.
L - With the inner fork tube EXTENDED, place the fork cap on top of the washer.
M - Measure from the top edge of the inner fork tube to the bottom surface of the fork cap lip.
* This SHOULD give your recommended fork spring preload. In my case, both sides measured a couple tenths of a millimeter around 19.5mm! Not too bad considering I cut the spacers with a hacksaw (and needed to even / flatten the cut ends)!
N - IF the preload is correct, CAREFULLY screw the fork caps back down.
* I actually pushed the cap down with my right hand and VERY slowly turned the inner fork tube onto the cap. This seemed to work pretty well. I know this because on the first one I felt right away that the threads were not lining up. So I backed off a bit and was able to thread it back on just fine.
O - Make sure to torque the fork caps to 17ft/lb (per the Clymer manual).

STEP 7 Assemble the front end as usual!

STEP 8 Take the bike for a ride and see how it feels!

STEP 9 If all is good, go grab yourself 1 or 6 of your favorite refreshment and congratulate yourself on a good, hard job well done! Oh, and make sure you do STEP 8 before you do STEP 9! :thumbsup:

Hope this helps!!

P.S. If anyone sees anything that I should add, subtract, or otherwise change please let me know. And of course if anyone has any general question regarding this I'd be more than happy to help if I can. Just give me a holla!

Image Image

92 FZR600 - 3EN2 400 swingarm, Micron, DynoJet, Factory Pro, K&N, R6 shock, RT springs/emulators, R6 MC, Galfer, YZF calipers, Vortex, RK, YZF/R6 VR/R, Vortex, Zero Gravity

90 FZR400 - Sharkskinz, D&D, Sudco, DynoJet, Factory Pro, Ohlins, RT springs/emulators, JEM Machine, Woodcraft, NRC, Galfer, Vortex, RK, YZF/R6 VR/R, Vortex, Lockhart Phillips

89 FZR600 - Vance & Hines, DynoJet, Zero Gravity - sold in '91


!!! 400 & 600 Parts For Sale !!! http://fzronline.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=9971

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Re: Race Tech Gold Valve Emulator Install

Postby ragedigital » Fri May 15, 2009 4:26 pm

Fantastic! Thanks for sharing, Brandon. Well done!
Thanks for joining and participating in the most "active" FZR Community on the internet!

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