Why buy a steering damper?
Whenever we are asked what a steering damper is, the best way we can explain it is this. Every bike has suspension to help you control the up and down movements of your front wheel. Well, a steering damper does a similar thing, it helps you control the side to side motion of the front wheel by dampening sharp or sudden hits that may want to turn your front wheel and send you in an unintended direction. So over the years we commonly explain to people that a damper provides "sideways suspension".
When people ask us why would you need that, we could talk for hours. The trial rider out after work can concentrate on how he is going to get up a snotty hill, rather than staring at his front wheel wondering what rock is going to throw him off and send him tumbling back down the hill. The road warrior out on country roads can accelerate with confidence from corner to corner without worrying that imperfect road conditions may send him offline and potentially into oncoming traffic. The adventure rider can hit that big patch of sand and rest easy that they won't be riding like a duck with two feet paddling.
But our products are not just for the weekend warriors, our steering dampers are the trusted brand used by race teams in offroad, and roadbike scenes such as KTM Desert Racing Team, SA Kawasaki BC Performance Superbike Team, Race Centre Yamaha and Branford Desert Racing. For more information regarding our sponsored riders please click here.
What is a steering damper?
So we've got you interested in a damper but you haven't got the foggiest as to what it is. MSC Moto and Ralle Moto steering dampers are a hydraulic rotary vane dampening system that basically sets the maximum speed your handle bars can go from full lock to full lock.
In the event of a sideways collision to your front wheel, the deflection will attempt to turn the handle bars in a sudden and potentially dangerous direction (A—> B). This is where your MSC Moto or Ralle Moto damper takes over.
“Deflection Dampening” (A—> B and D—> E)
The linkage arm connects to our solid billet steel paddle/rotary vane which pushes hydraulic oil through our 20 position adjuster absorbing the impact back to the frame instead of the rider’s arms. The harder you have it set, the harder it is for the oil to pass and the more it dampens the steering movement. With 20 different settings, there is a perfect setting for every situation.
In case you have already done some research on steering dampers in general, you might be wondering about the "Return to Centre" damping circuit that is often a big topic of discussion. Well the MSC Moto and Ralle Moto steering dampers lead the way with our new ACTIVE RTC technology.
ACTIVE return to centre is basically the best of both worlds in “return to centre” damping options. The Active RTC will work out from the riders input if the bike needs ZERO/NO Damping on return to centre, or if the rider needs FULL damping on return to centre.
For example if the rider is travelling at high speeds where steering is minimal but stability requirements are high, the damper will provide FULL dampening on return to centre to eliminate free play which gets rid of head shake. However, if the rider needs to make a fast counter steer movement back to centre, for example if they want to avoid an obstacle when a trial tightens up, or fast movements are required the oil will bleed off and bypass the dampening unit, so you effectively have a dynamic system that gives the rider ZERO damping on return to centre.
The ACTIVE RTC only works when needed and is pressure sensitive so no adjuster is used.
What makes MSC Moto and Ralle Moto dampers great?
•CNC Machined Solid billet aircraft grade aluminium body housings
•Stainless steel high quality fasteners
•Machine engraved not laser etched
•Durable black anodizing for better surface wear
•Special compound longer lasting seals
•Billet single piece tool steel vane NOT 2 parts pinned together
•Billet case hardened steel linkages
•Hand built in Australia by the guys who designed developed and manufacture the parts
Thanks for taking the time to explore our steering damper range.
For more information about each of the types of dampers click on the link below.
If you have any more questions, check out our FAQ page or give us a call on +61 2 4374 1655.