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I`m not sure which would be the best thing to do..buy the progressive shocks or rebuild the stock ones.I realise its $400 plus for new progressives,but rebuilding cant be near that amount.I`ve also found that parts may be hard to come by to rebuild.My question is whether or not you think the progressive shocks are that much better than rebuilt stock shocks.When I ride 2 up,my mudflap on the rear scrapes at certain areas/times and its annoying.



BTW,anyone looking to selll any intercom parts of any sort?
 

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What bike are you talking about? I've got an 83 Interstate that I replaced the stock shocks and fork springs with Progressives and love the way the bike handles. They are firmer than the old shocks and that's a good thing in my opinion.

Hobie
 

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Different bikes require different parts.. Some rear shocks can be rebuilt, some can't..

Like Hobie1 said... What kind of bike are you asking about? Year, make , model.?
 

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Sorry about not including the info before..Its an 85 Aspencade.
 

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85 Aspy.. Nice choice...

Yes, the rear shocks are rebuildable.. Do a search on this site for a mountain of information on how to do it quickly and safely... also, there are not too many parts available to do the job.. I believe you can still get the seals and boots, but piston and shell parts are not...

My advice would be to install Progressive springs and new seals. Re-fill the shock with the recommended oil... ATF... and test for leaks. Cost might be around $200 for everything.

Exavid has done the job more times than I have, (only twice), so give him a shout on some tips..
 

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Hi all. Has anyone actually compared rebuilt stock shocks to new progessives. I'm looking at rebuilding my stock ones also but not if it's a waste of time.
 

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gkiesel wrote:
Hi all. Has anyone actually compared rebuilt stock shocks to new progessives. I'm looking at rebuilding my stock ones also but not if it's a waste of time.
On my 1500 I've had both the OEM and Progressive shocks. There's no doubt in my mind that the Progressives are superior. With the Progressive 416s you get both air and springs on both sides instead of the 1500 set up with one spring shock and one air shock. The 416s are firmer and they really pay off when riding two up. I guess it just comes down to cost and preference. If you are fairly light weight (not like me) and don't ride with a passenger a lot, the OEM shocks will probably be fine for you. Rebuilding your old shocks with new seals isn't all that expensive so you might just rebuild you current shocks and then decide if they are right for you. You could always sell them if you decide to go with Progressives. I think the Progressive shocks make the greatest difference on the 1500 but they will make the twisties better on most Wings.
 

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The Progressives are the way to go, but they aren'teverybodies cup of tea. Some people find them too hard, although Progressives work better with more weight on the bike.
 

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OK This an 0ld post made new again. I've finally got the seals and new boots to rebuild my rear shocks. Also got new upper and lower shock mount bushings. My question is should I use ATF fluid or substitutesuspensionfluid and if so what weight? Iwould really like firmer rebound damping in the rear. The bike sort of pogos up and down as it goes down the road. Makes me sea sick. Thanks in advance. George.
 

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You're going to get more than one opinion on this one but I find ATF works fine for me. A lot of folks claim that ATF varies in viscosity and that motorcycle fork oil is better so take your pick.
 

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exavid wrote:
You're going to get more than one opinion on this one but I find ATF works fine for me. A lot of folks claim that ATF varies in viscosity and that motorcycle fork oil is better so take your pick.

Assuming ATF is approx 7-7.5wt, I was wondering if I should go with something heavier like 15-20wt.. I'm worried if I go too thick the shock might not stroke smoothly in colder weather.
 

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My bike rides fine down to 38 degree weather which is as cold as I've ridden it since changing oil. Don't see a lot of difference in 100 degree weather either for that matter.
 

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I rebuilt the stock rear shocks on my '86 Interstate last year and this is what I learned.

The oil you add to the shocks has no effect on motion damping. Unless you replace theactual damping units (they are a sealed unit and not available from Honda) you will not notice a change in damping.

The oil is there for 2 purposes. It lubricates and adds a thick liquid seal against the rubber seal to keep the air pressure inside the shock. Varying the amount of oil in the shock varies the volume of air you can put in them. More oil, less air volume and afirmer ride.

Shouldn't really make any difference whether you use ATF or fork oil.
 

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I'm wondering if the oil serves a two-fold purpose. In a standard shock, the oil passes thru an orifice to slow down the re-bound action of the weight of the body to balance the movement of the suspension. This is also prevelent in a standard shock absorber with pressurized air. I think it's called an OLEO Chamber where the dampening oil is actually mixed in with the airinside and lubricates all the moving parts. The rubber seals prevent oil from leaking past the piston and also retain the air pressure introduced from outside. When the piston is collapsed into the cylinder during compression, the fluid must travel to some remote location to prevent liquid lock. There is a two way orifice located between the oil resevoir and an empty space somewhere inside the shock.. (Usually on the outside wall of the cylinder and inside the outer shell of the shock itself). The pressured air will sit on top of the fluid until motion is introducedengaging the piston within the cylinder.. When that happens, the oil can sometimes foam. This will "Bleed out" with additonal movement and the constant vertical position of the shock housing.

The oil seal referred to here keeps the oil / air mixture inside the shock housing and prevents it from leaking past the shaft and cylinder outer shell, to the outside...

Shocks of almost all designs use a light weight oil to compensate for outside ambient air temperatures.. naturally, once a shock absorber becomes active, it will generate its own heat and keep the viscosity of the oil constant. Lighter oil equals softer dampening.. Heavier oil equals a more harsh dampening.

Shock absorbers do not affect the standing height ofa vehicle. That job rests on the springs. If air is introduced into the shock, it can affect standing height to a certain degree until additonal weight is added to the vehicle, then, at that time, the springs take over again.

The Honda repair manual also recommends ATF..

Hope this helps...
 

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NeedleNick wrote:
More oil, less air volume and afirmer ride.

Shouldn't really make any difference whether you use ATF or fork oil.
Is this true?

~teacher~~~
 

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I believe it has some truth to it.. Air is compressable, fluid is not..

Less air to compress equals more fluid which cannot be compressed,,, Hence,,,, Stiffer ride...
 

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The GL1200 shocks have a somewhat unique design since they contain an air chamber as well as the spring and damping unit. The picture shown should betterillustrate this.

While the damping unit does contain oil that is forced though orifices to control movement, it is a sealed unit and the oil in it is separate from and unrelated to the oil youput in the shock during a rebuild.

Hope this helps!

 

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actually, nick the 1200 shocks, do use the same oil as the seal uses to seal air pressure. there are holes around the circumference of the upper portion of the shock that let the oil migrate between the two areas (think of the outer area as a reservior) now, the progressive dampers that can be installed in the factory shocks ARE fully sealed units. they also take significantly less oil during rebuild than using the stock dampers.
 

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Hmmm, Never noticed the holes when I rebuilt mine. Guess it makes sense though.

Makes me want to tear down one of my shocks . . . NOT!

Thanks for the clarification.
 

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I'll try and post some pics when I replace my dampers (ordering on the first)
 
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