Motorcycle Suspension Development Using Ride Comfort Analysis with a Laboratory Test System 1999-01-3276
An analytical approach to developing motorcycle suspensions is presented. Typical uncontrolled and subjective evaluations that place limits on suspension development are curtailed through the use of a laboratory-based road simulation technique, which evaluates vehicle ride quality. Ride comfort is calculated using a specifically tailored NASA model after primary and secondary frequency regimes have been established for this type of motorcycle. Correlation between road and laboratory simulation is measured and compared to the road data variance. A designed experiment evaluates changes in ride quality as a function of suspension and tire pressure adjustments. Various suspension settings are repeated on the simulator and corresponding ride numbers are calculated for both environments. An analysis is performed to correlate ride quality improvements on the simulator with ride quality improvements in the field. Statistical limits are placed on the accuracy of this technique and compared to the variance intrinsic in road-based measurements. Finally, the overall merit and limitation of this technique is discussed.