Motorcycle rear shock rebuild

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Have any of you owned a bike long enough to send off the rear shock for a rebuild? I bought my Triumph with 30K miles on it and now 10k later I think it's time to freshen the rear shock. A brand new OEM unit is $900 and I'm having trouble finding low mileage ones off of wrecked bikes. All the better aftermarket options are easily $1000+. I found a shop in the NE that can rebuild it for around $300 but haven't figured out how to find a local shop that can do it so I don't have to deal with shipping costs both ways.
 
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Stock stock not designed to be rebuilt. Only a few have that process figured out. That said it is still a stock shock, even rebuilt still bad ride. Get a aftermarket rebuildable shock. You will not believe the difference. Rod
 
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Originally Posted by ragtoplvr
Stock stock not designed to be rebuilt. Only a few have that process figured out. That said it is still a stock shock, even rebuilt still bad ride. Get a aftermarket rebuildable shock. You will not believe the difference. Rod
For the riding I do, I just can't justify dropping $1200 on an aftermarket unit.
 
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Originally Posted by ammolab
I sent the Nivomat self leveling shock from my BMW K75C back to Germany for a rebuild @ 130,000 miles. Came back good as new!
Glad to hear of a success story. I know those BMW parts are often more complicated for shops to work on.
 
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Does Penske have an application for your bike? I put one on my VFR along with Traxxion Dynamics fork spring and it transformed it. After many years the nitrogen leaked out so it's due for a rebuild. Traxxion
 
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Originally Posted by Reddy45
Have any of you owned a bike long enough to send off the rear shock for a rebuild? I bought my Triumph with 30K miles on it and now 10k later I think it's time to freshen the rear shock. A brand new OEM unit is $900 and I'm having trouble finding low mileage ones off of wrecked bikes. All the better aftermarket options are easily $1000+. I found a shop in the NE that can rebuild it for around $300 but haven't figured out how to find a local shop that can do it so I don't have to deal with shipping costs both ways.
Here's the thing with suspension. You bought the bike with 30k on the clock and rode another 10k so your concern with cost is absolutely legit. Is it fair to say you never rode that exact bike with prestine suspension? Most OEM suspension comes from the factory undersprung for like a 150# rider and you end up dialing preload just so you're in the meaty part of the spring under full rider weight. That's when you end up running out of travel and close to bottoming out resulting in a harsh ride. I do agree with other posters that aftermarket is the way to go having low/high speed compression and rebound damping along with ride height and typical preload adjustments for the $1000+ ones you already researched. Benefit is the spring is correct for your weight. OEM shocks also have crappy internals so even if you had the oil changed and recharged, it will still behave the same if it inherently was crappy to begin with. I think most modern day sport bikes have better suspension than decades ago so it does depend on your make/model triumph. I had my aftermarket shock freshened up and really liked how it absorbs the bumps and tracks the pavement when properly setup for like $150 back many years ago. The problem is now you have a well sorted rear shock, then the front end becomes a liability. Sometimes there's enough adjustment to get that taken care of but in my case, I had the front forks sent out and resprung and revalved. Yes, the difference was absolutely noticeable and would recommend for spirited riders and canyon carvers. It never ends! Not knowing the type of riding, this may better lead you to your decision. I would really try to find a used aftermarket shock and have a plan for the front suspension too. Not all aftermarket have the full bells and whistles so sometimes you can find a more "street" version offering that may be like a couple hundred dollars less than the "race" version. I used Lindemann Engineering out in CA back in the day.
 
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I've taken my stock Showa apart and decided it was not worth to rebuild... technically speaking the piston seal in the shock shock employs the cheapest material possible... that material is like a gob of RTV sealant and does not expand sufficiently enough over time and during hard use... so as the shock body ages and then heats up the clearances between the piston seal and body grows enough to allow fluid blow by... the result is the back end of your once planted RC45 begins to moves around a bit... After market shocks like Ohlins employ the best material possible namely a Teflon expanding seal around the piston that has the ability to grow consistently over time and during hard use... My Ohlins Rear Shock was only $680... [Linked Image from vfrdiscussion.com]
 
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What specific bike? A "Triumph" is pretty broad. Daugherty Motorsports rebuilt the stock rear shocks on my ZRX 1200. He said that the stock shocks are a good platform just the valving sucks. Puts their custom compression and rebound valving in along with springs for your weight. Full custom shocks and maintains the stealth stock look.
 
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Originally Posted by Brian553
'13 Tiger 800 I'm interested in this thread; I also have this bike and am curious if this can be done.
We have the same bike (unless yours is the XC?). Anyway if it's the non-XC then you can indeed have the shock rebuilt since it's a common Showa model. Expect to pay around $150 for labor+parts. Add another $150 if you want a stiffer spring swapped in if you're a heavier dude or ride with lots of luggage on the reg.
 
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Originally Posted by Reddy45
Originally Posted by Brian553
'13 Tiger 800 I'm interested in this thread; I also have this bike and am curious if this can be done.
We have the same bike (unless yours is the XC?). Anyway if it's the non-XC then you can indeed have the shock rebuilt since it's a common Showa model. Expect to pay around $150 for labor+parts. Add another $150 if you want a stiffer spring swapped in if you're a heavier dude or ride with lots of luggage on the reg.
I do have the XC. So they used different rear shocks between the two?
 
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I've done plenty of dirt bike shocks. Generally, the long travel suspension of non vintage dirt bikes wears out the internal bore fairly quickly on some models. So even with the installation of new seals and piston, it's damping performance is poor in the mid-stroke. I even had the worn bore of a Showa shock for my Husqvarna 360 Nikasil coated, and diamond honed to dimensional perfection. I then installed an aftermarket piston and valves (spring shims really) . It was cheaper than purchasing a new shock body, and worked out well. The bore was originally anodized aluminum, and the anodizing wore through quickly. In more general terms, simply replacing the piston's seals, the shaft seal and the oil/nitrogen results in good performance as long as the internal bore is not worn out.
 
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Originally Posted by Brian553
Originally Posted by Reddy45
Originally Posted by Brian553
'13 Tiger 800 I'm interested in this thread; I also have this bike and am curious if this can be done.
We have the same bike (unless yours is the XC?). Anyway if it's the non-XC then you can indeed have the shock rebuilt since it's a common Showa model. Expect to pay around $150 for labor+parts. Add another $150 if you want a stiffer spring swapped in if you're a heavier dude or ride with lots of luggage on the reg.
I do have the XC. So they used different rear shocks between the two?
Yours is a slightly longer shock and it has an external oil reservoir. Not sure if this would increase the rebuild cost, but you could also browse eBay since there's tons of used low mileage XC shocks on there.
 
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Just a couple bits, look on ebay, I just took a look and there are several shocks available both new and used. It tends to give you an idea of what's available. Also there is a shop in NJ called EPM Performance. They specialize in M/C shocks. Might have some info there. Cheers.
 
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FWIW I put Progressive 430 shocks on the back on my Harley and right away noticed a difference over stock. I rebuilt my front forks (Showa 49mm) and just the updated fluid (Harley E fluid) made a noticeable difference in how the bike rides.
 
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Like somebody said above - send it to Cogent Dynamics. They will service any shock and make it so you can rebuild it next time in your own shop. Good Luck.
 
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