Bilsten Blackhawk 9300 Series Off Road Racing Shocks - Top Secret Race ShockPosted in Features on March 1, 2005
Off-road race trucks are not the fastest four-wheel vehicles in the world, but they are the only things on the planet that can go 100+ mph over rocks, sand, and 3-foot-deep washboard roads without killing the occupants. Want to race for 1,000 miles and jump a few dozen school buses along the way? Sorry, monster trucks, you aren't going to cut it! Nope, you're going to need a Trophy Truck or a Class 1 buggy for that kind of driving detail. And if you go, you're going to need some state-of-the-art shock absorbers to make sure that when you do get airborne your landing isn't lethal. To help you understand the technology that goes into high-end dampeners, we spent the day at Bilstein's West Coast facility to get a sneak peak at its newest race shock.
Code-named the Blackhawk 9300 series, the key difference between Bilstein's shock and everything else currently on the market is its extruded aluminum construction. Until now off-road bypass shocks had always been made with steel bodies that the bypass tubes are TIG-welded onto. They do amazing things, but even the biggest shocks heat up and start to fade after hundreds of miles at wide-open throttle across the desert. Bilstein's new Blackhawk shock could make the old technology obsolete with huge reductions in peak operating temperatures (more than 100 degrees lower) thanks to heat dissipation 30 percent faster than steel tube shocks. The 9300 series shock is also 25 percent lighter than similar welded-steel bypass shocks. But why should you care about a $2,200 shock? Simple. Race technology always trickles down to daily-driven vehicles. Consider this a look into the future. If one day there is a bolt-on aluminum bypass shock for your lifted 4x4 that gives you a good ride on-road, off-road, empty, or load down-you saw it here first!