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Rebuildable Shock Buyer's Guide

Posted in How To on April 1, 2008
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Photographers: Jordan May

Believe it or not, at one time there was no such thing as a rebuildable off-road shock available for consumer use. For many years, these units were for the dedicated off-road racer only -- the person who had the budget to afford them, the staff to rebuild them, and the knowledge to set them up for their optimum performance. As these items have become more mainstream throughout the marketplace, they have become more accessible to consumers for their daily drivers. Their performance, maintenance, and affordability have been able to keep up with their supply and demand, while continuing to improve the products for new applications and vehicles as well.

This month we have assembled a sampling of some of today's most popular rebuildable shocks, taking into consideration their construction types, features, and other key points that distinguish them from each other.


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: Application-specific
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: No
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-Customer rebuildable with simple handtools
-Nitrogen gas charged to 200 psi
-Application-specific lengths
-Reservoir provides additional oil for cooling and keeps nitrogen and oil separate for superior performance
-Critical internal shock seals provided in Viton for maximum sealing performance

For more information, contact: Pro Comp Suspension, (800) 776-0767, www.explorerprocomp.com


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 5/8 inch
Eyelet Type: Brass- and Teflon-coated spherical bearing
Adjustable: No
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-Radflo "Freeflo" racing piston
-Cadium finish for durability and aesthetics
-Available in a coilover configuration with aluminum-machined finish and Nylatron spring sliders
-Five- and six-stage velocity-sensitive independent rebound and compression

For more information, contact: Radflo Suspension Technology, (714) 965-7828, www.radflo.com


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2.5-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 9/16 inch without sleeves, 1/2 inch with sleeves
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: No
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-High-pressure cast shock ends
-Revalvable and rebuildable piston/shim arrangement
-Reservoir ensures consistent performance for demanding off-roading
-Buna-N seals that withstand temperatures up to 250 degrees F

For more information, contact: FOA Shock Absorbers, (760) 608-2188, www.f-o-a.com


Shock Type: Fluted Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2.625-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 1/2 inch with sleeve
Eyelet Type: Spherical bearing
Adjustable: No
Reservoir: Optional

Additional Features:
-Aluminum body
-Tubular shaft design
-8-16 inches of travel
-Fluted aluminum tubing body adds structure to body

For more information, contact: Pure Performance, (518) 270-9822, www.pure-performance.biz


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch-od
Eyelet Bore Size: 1/2-inch with sleeve, 3/4-inch without sleeve
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: No
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-High-flow piston improves ride quality
-Available as a standard body, without a reservoir
-Completely owner-rebuildable
-Available in application-specific lengths

For more information, contact: Bilstein Shock Absorbers, (858) 386-5900, www.bilstein.com


Shock Type: Coilover
Size (Body Diameter): 4.5-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: Application-specific
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: Yes
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-CNC-machined from 7075- and 6061-T6 aircraft-quality aluminum
-200-psi nitrogen-charged external reservoir
-1-1/4-inch nitro steel shaft for the ultimate in durability
-7-inch-diameter dual-rate coil spring
-Won Best New Product of the Year at the 2007 Off-Road -Impact Show

For more information, contact: Donahoe Racing Enterprises, (951) 279-8000, www.donahoeracing.com


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 1/2 inch with sleeve, 14mm, 5/8 inch
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: Yes
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-CNC-machined from 6061-T6 aircraft-quality aluminum
-160-psi nitrogen-charged external reservoir
-5/8-inch steel shaft

For more information, contact: Walker Evans Racing, (888) 933-7223, www.walkerevansracing.com


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 1/2 inch with sleeve, 5/8 inch without sleeve
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: No
Reservoir: Optional

Additional Features:
-14mm super-finished, hardened, chrome-plated piston rods
-Full chamber of high-pressure nitrogen gas with floating-piston technology
-Massive 46mm bore reacts faster to bumps and impact absorption
-Seamless tube design allows for more efficient cooling

For more information, contact: Doetsch Enterprises, (619) 442-7300, www.doetsch-shocks.com


Shock Type: Coilover
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 1/2 inch
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined, heat-treated alloy steel spherical bearing
Adjustable: Yes
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-Eyelets are 6061-T6 billet aluminum with blue or black anodizing
-Tunable velocity-sensitive valving
-Clear cadmium plating for durability
-Nitrogen gas pressurized to 200 psi

For more information, contact: Fox Racing Shocks, (619) 768-1800, www.foxracingshox.com


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 9/16 inch without sleeves, 1/2 inch with sleeves
Eyelet Type: Spherical bearing or urethane mounting ends
Adjustable: No
Reservoir: Optional

Additional Features:
-Designed for applications where a larger shock is physically too large to fit
-Available for lifted applications in the stock-shock position and multiple shock configurations
-1-3/4-inch-od billet piston
-Available in reservoir and nonreservoir style
-Outstanding dampening capacity for both on- and off-road

For more information, contact: Fabtech Motorsports, (877) 432-2832, www.fabtechmotorsports.com


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2.5-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 5/8 inch
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: Yes
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:

-Four completely adjustable stages
-Three externally adjustable compression stages
-One externally adjustable rebound stage
-No internal valve changes needed
-Aircraft-quality 6061- and 7075-T6 billet aluminum

For more information, contact: Revolution Racing Shocks, (619) 954-9722, www.rrshocks.com


Shock Type: Monotube
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 1/2 inch with sleeve, 3/4 inch without sleeve
Eyelet Type: Com10 Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: No
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-Ideal for off-road buggies, long-travel sand cars, extreme rockcrawlers, and performance trucks
-Shock travel ranges from 6 to 16 inches in 2-inch increments
-Nickel-plated cylinders
-High-strength 7/8-inch nitro steel shafts
-Shock bodies are threaded for both single- and dual-rate applications

For more information, contact: Sway-A-Way, (818) 700-9712, www.swayaway.com


Shock Type: Coilover
Size (Body Diameter): 2-inch and 2.5-inch
Eyelet Bore Size: 9/16 inch without sleeves, 1/2 inch with sleeves
Eyelet Type: Teflon-lined 4130 spherical bearing
Adjustable: Yes
Reservoir: Yes

Additional Features:
-6061-T6 billet-machined aluminum parts
-Fully threaded seamless steel cylinder
-Large 7/8-inch-diameter shaft and custom-wound coil springs
-Available in two and three tube configurations which allow for precise adjustments of rebound and absorption of the units
-Reservoir units are available as either piggyback units or remote-reservoir units

For more information, contact: King Shock Technology, (714) 530-8701, www.kingshocks.com

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