F650 Lowering Kit FAQ

compiled & edited by Kristian #562
Please read the Disclaimer before attempting any work in this FAQ.
December '01

Lowering Kit FAQ

by Zigy
December ‘01


The Lowering Kit comprises:  


What you can do easily:  

Items that are a bit more difficult.


Lowering Kit Opinions

How do I know my Bike is Lowered
Most Grateful for the Lowering-Links Photos provided by Langlois

These suspension components are from 2 different 1997 BMW F650's, YMMV if you have a GS or a newer bike!

Standard Link, normal ride height

Standard link, center to center

Standard link on a complete suspension system

Complete NORMAL suspension (unlowered)

Long and short sidestand compared, note that the shorter one has a sharper bend in it.

Short Center Stand (on bike) normal one (dirty)

THIS is the lowering link IN the bike

Another view, note that the link is LONGER than the "normal" height one! I could not get a measurement (but will)

This is a '97 F650 on its Short (lowered) centerstand

A Short( I think) sidestand.


Q. My wife has a new to her 1999 f650. I ordered a used lowering kit and the 2 shock linkages appear to be the same length as is already on the bike. The distance between the holes is 2 inches. Can anyone tell me if this is stock or lowered. I am really confused now. Also what is the approximate length difference in the side stand. I am new to the f650 and I have read the FAQs but could not find this information. The person that I got the bike from said it was not lowered and the person that I got the lowering kit from said it was a lowering kit. Mike McSwain 99 F650 (Wife's)

Installation Instructions


Lowering Kit Installation Instructions. (This is a multi-page tif file, with all 4 pages in one file). Use a Graphics Reader like Irfanview or similar to read, and use the green down/up arrows to scroll between pages. (Thanks to Tom#654 & David#888)

Lowering Kit Installation:
by John#549

I lowered mine primarily so both feet would touch the ground at a stop. Before I was on tiptoes and sometimes off to one side. The slight loss in ground clearance and potential bottoming out was a good trade-off for more stopped stability and even ride stability. I'm not sorry I did it.

I bought the lowering kit parts here near Sacramento at A&S (really Roseville). The kit cost around $250 or so as I recall (276 list less 10% discount). Add to that a quart of fork fluid ($10), and $58 to put the spacer in the shock (as labor cost). Labor was going to cost around $240 or so -- I saved about $200 in labor costs. Kit includes:

- new lower shock linkage
- shock spacers (internal to shock pushrod)
- new side stand
- new center stand

Installation was fairly easy after decoding the instruction sheet with the kit and using the factory maintenance manual (both were used). Basic tools required: Metric combination wrench set, metric 3/8 drive sockets, torque wrench, and very important -- 3/8 drive metric hex wrenches. The basic steps:

  1. Place on center stand and remove rear wheel to gain access to shock.
  2. Replace new idler linkage to the lower shock (where the shock meets the suspension). Torque bolts to spec.
  3. Remove shock , upper shock mount access was easy by left panel, battery and right panel. Remove hydraulic shock adjusting knob and valve which is attached to shock.
  4. Take shock to BMW dealer to get spacer installed.
  5. Reinstall shock, connecting to new longer idler linkage.
  6. Reinstall rear wheel and adjust chain.
  7. Replace side stand with shorter stand.
  8. Put on side stand and replace with new shorter center stand.
  9. Loosen upper and lower triple clamp brackets under and over fairing (no body parts needed to be removed). Do this one and next 2 steps one side at a time!
  10. Allow fork tubes to slide in triple clamps so 50mm is now sticking out above top triple clamp on each fork tube.
  11. Remove fork tube cap. Add an additional 50ml of fork oil.
  12. Adjust front brake line in clamps per instructions (need to be moved down some).
  13. Test drive and enjoy setting both feet down!


Reversing a Lowering Kit Installation

Custom Lowering #1

Custom Lowering #2 - Koubalinks





For opinions of these on the GS/Dakar, see the Dakar Lowering FAQ

Custom Low Seats


Short Biker Opinions