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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Continuing my suspension quest, I have a line on a second-hand Fox shock. It's from a first gen SV racing bike.

The bad: The seller says he knows nothing about it, other than it might be a double-clicker and has an Eibach spring (maybe sprung for a 180 lb rider -- he's not sure). Doesn't know how many miles/races it has on it, or if it's ever been rebuilt. Says guy he bought it from used it to race the weekend before he bough it, though, and it looks to him to be in good condition.

The good: It's a Fox. I understand these are pretty good. He lives nearby; says I can come look at it.

The questions:

Any way to tell what weight it's sprung for?

If it is sprung for 180, and I weigh 220, any harm in trying it as is before I spend even more money on it? (I'm generally doing normal street riding -- no racing.)

If it's sprung for 180, would I need to respring and revalve, or just respring?

Any way to tell if it's been rebuilt recently, or will need a rebuild now or soon?

About how much would I have to pay to have it rebuilt? Resprung? Revalved?

What would be a good price for it, given the circumstances? If it needs servicing, I don't want to end up paying anything close to what a new high-end shock would cost me.
 

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If the seller can't tell you anything about it, I'd say that a good price would be:

(new price / 2) - cost of a full service.

So maybe $200? If you buy it, send it off to a good shop and tell them what you want to use it for, they can check it out, test the spring, fix any seals, recharge the gas, and change the spring and valving if necessary.

If it was sprung for a 180 pounder for track use, it might be OK for a 220 pounder on the street. But if you change the spring rate you certainly need to change the valving. Best bet is to lowball the seller and if he goes for it, leave the sorting out stuff to the pros.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
^^^Thank you. So a full service is $400; total cost, $600? Hmmm... a new Penske double clicker is only $100 more, and either is much more than I want to spend. I may need to rethink this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
"Full Service" Don't think this is a technical term. I think Syscrush is simply talking about a rebuild + reshock + revalve (i.e, "the works"). Traxxion quoted me $300 to do all this to a ZX shock. I've emailed them for a quote re Fox.

As I understand it, a rebuild involves dismantling, inspecting, replacing seals and gaskets, nitrogen recharge, lube, and reassembly. If hard parts are worn out, I beleive replacing them is extra. Recommended at the end of each racing season, or, if street use, after 10,000 - 15,000 miles.

Respring and revalve involves setting the shock up for a specific rider + bike weight, model bike, and type of riding.

I'm guessing Traxxion is quoting me approx $100 per each of the three services, including parts. Best price I've found so far.
 

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I'm guessing Traxxion is quoting me approx $100 per each of the three services, including parts. Best price I've found so far.

http://www.computrackboston.com/

send the shock to Peter Kates. He's highly recommended. A lot of the guys that race at Louden use him and he's a regular on NE forums. I found him great to work with.

He just rebuilt my Twin Clicker. $100 for the rebuild, $50 for the revalve. The shock is great! Peter can tell you what the spring rate is on the shock. he has a dyno, or you can try and get a part number with it. Rebuild kits are available from Linderman Engineering, but often they don't need them. Peter replaced a few seals on mine from his parts drawer. No charge.

I would take the Penske/Race Tech rates with a grain of salt. The recommended 650# for me and I am 180+. The bike is plenty stiff with the 600# springs I have. I am just not subjecting it to racing level forces. It's a hell of a lot better than stock. If you are not racing that shock could be really good as a street shock for you.

The Fox is not as long as the Penske, and a lot of people will freak out about that, but with the ride height adjustment it's longer than stock and about as long as the Ohlins. Again, maybe not optimal for racing, but for tooling around and a mix of fast riding, light touring and what not I want a bike that's also stable, so the Fox is fine for me. I have mine set at max height and I wouldn't want it any higher. Make sure it has the ride height adjustment.

You may want to get the shock and just install it, maybe it's fine as is. My shock is valved for a 600# spring, but Peter said that the valving would accommodate a 650# spring easily.

It's a very nice shock, and for my money the equal of anything out there especially with the custom valving.

I'd offer $150 pointing out that getting it revalved and resprung could cost you up to $250, and then you'd be getting into new shock territory. But really, try the shock as is. Take the Penske/RT rates with a grain of salt and if need be send it to Peter. He really is great and knows the Fox well.

Offer $150 but be prepared to go higher if that's what you want. It's a great shock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
^^^ Lots of good advice, here. I will contact Peter Kates.

EDIT: I just got a respnse to my questions from Fox technical support.

taxonomy, you were prophetic. According to Fox, the correct spring for me would be 7" and 600 lb/in., which is good for riders 180 - 230 lbs., and that the spring that's on the shock now should be labled somewhere as to what it is. Sounds encouraging. Although they said they'd recommend a refurbishing, since there's no real way to know for sure when it was last serviced without accompanying paperwork, the gist of their response was the same as yours: put it on the bike and see how it works.
 

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the gist of their response was the same as yours: put it on the bike and see how it works.
Have you ever ridden a bike with a good shock? If you've just ridden the SV or others with similar budget suspension, then you might ride quite a few miles on a clapped-out aftermarket shock believing that it's fine because it's so much better than your old stocker. :)

Just something to consider. ;)
 

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Have you ever ridden a bike with a good shock? If you've just ridden the SV or others with similar budget suspension, then you might ride quite a few miles on a clapped-out aftermarket shock believing that it's fine because it's so much better than your old stocker. :)

Just something to consider. ;)
This is true, and to some extent it's why I spent the $150 to have Peter rebuild my shock. It's also the middle of winter and I thought I would do it now rather than potentially loosing the riding time next summer.

You should be able, however, to tell if the clickers are doing anything. Even just bouncing the bike up and down in the garage should tell you if the damping is there at all. Go ride the bike over some square edge bumps with the compression damping turned all the way up and you'll see, both, if the oil has viscosity and if the washer stack is OK.

For me, at the moment I got the shock I was happy to send it out for the $150 and know that it's right, it's not a huge sum of money and it sure it a lot cheaper than a new Penske or Ohlins and, for my use, every bit as good.

FYI, you will need to take a small notch out of the battery box to clear the attachment point for the hose. It's not much, you could notch it with a file in 2 minutes. The battery and everything stays where it is, however.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I see your point, Syscrush. There's better than what you have, and then there's the best it can be.

Right now, I'd be content with "better." If I need to, I can wait a bit to achieve "best."
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Ha ha. Jim Lindemann at Lindemann Engineering was recommended to me by Fox for servicing this shock. He just responded that ideal spring for me s/b 650 lbs/in.; a bit lighter would be okay for cruising around, but not for spirited riding.

Gahhh!
 

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Ha ha. Jim Lindemann at Lindemann Engineering was recommended to me by Fox for servicing this shock. He just responded that ideal spring for me s/b 650 lbs/in.; a bit lighter would be okay for cruising around, but not for spirited riding.

Gahhh!
Really, do not change the spring yet. Stick with the lighter spring to start with.

Check the sag before you do anything. Ride the shock for a while. You can drive yourself crazy with internet "what if" scenarios but try the shock out actually. Those numbers are high from Penske and whoever. Linderman is prolly reading off the Penske RT chart.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
^^^ I agree with you. However...

Traxxion answered back -- sez I s/b on a 700 lb spring! (Guess I could always try to lose a few pounds.)

Still going to see it, in about an hour. If I don't go mad before then....
 

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If you can install the shock yourself, to keep the cost down,
I would as said before just ride it like it is.
Who knows it might even teach you to ride better unless it`s unsafe.
After I have seen how fast people can go on that "crappy" SV stock suspension it`s more up to you anyway.

Zoran might be still the one ask even it`s not a Penske.
 

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Zoran might be still the one ask even it`s not a Penske.
I even think Zoran is waaaaay to track oriented. He was for pushing the back end up really high. Maybe this is good for a track oriented, attack all the time bike but it's not what I want on the street.

My 600# spring (50 under Penske's recommendation) sits with less than 5mm static sag with just two turns of preload. Stock SV is 510#.

Yes, for you Penske Racing (notice the name) is going to recommend a 675 to 700# spring. Maybe when you are whacking open the throttle wide open right at the apex, that'd be something to consider.

There is a huge temptation to treat everthing like we're all running at 11/10ths all the time. See how the bike actually sits when you adjust for sag, then make a decision.
 

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I even think Zoran is waaaaay to track oriented. He was for pushing the back end up really high. Maybe this is good for a track oriented, attack all the time bike but it's not what I want on the street.
My GF (over 15 years of riding under her belt) had a different experience,
we give him all the info specially that`s not for a track/race and it worked out fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Wanted to update everyone on what happened last night, but first, thanks again to all who helped me out with this.

Went to the seller's house. Nice guy. He runs an air-cooled Ducati Superbike in CCS. (Used to run an SV, from which the shock was taken off for an upgrade to a 3-click Penske, but sold that to get the Duc. All of which he regrets, but that's another story.) He invited me to visit him in the pits and see him race this weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

The shock turned out to be in good shape, at least from what I could see. Only visible issue: the steel braiding around the hose to the remote reservior was frayed in one spot, but I'm talking about a few metal strands broken; the braiding still covers the the hose, and the hose is intact. Wasn't really an issue for me.

The issue was that the shock was sprung at 550 lb/in. Aaahhh... nuts! Well, the "try it and see" mantra that I headed over there with won out, and I bought it. The deal-closer was that he knocked the price down from $250 to $150, since I was there with cash-in-hand.

I rationalized the decision a few ways. It's still much better and stiffer than the stock unit. It's also better and stiffer, and not much more money, than any ZX shock, which several people have said I shouldn't bother with.

I don't push my bike too hard, so the shock might work for me, as is (or I might lose some weight... yeah, right), but even if I send it to be reworked, at $450 total investment, it's still a pretty good deal. Plus, the seller has a contact for me (a local guy, ex-GMD employee who's now freelance), that he said would do the work for me really cheap, as a favor to him.

My fallback position is that for what I paid, I should be able to resell it without taking a hit, if I just want to bail.

I hope to get it mounted tomorrow. I'll let you know how it turns out. In the meantime, any and all opinions are welcome.
 

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Awesome deal, even if the spring rate is light. Make sure you spend the time to adjust the length and such before you install it. Also if you have someone knowledgeable around, have them help you get close to proper sag numbers if you can.
 
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