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  #1  
Old 19 Jan 2010
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Replace rear and front shock/suspension?

Hi Hubbers

Planning a long distance (30 000km +) dirt/dust road trip all the way around Africa in 2011. I will replace my rear shock closer to the time with a quality and more reliable one, as I have heard they do take a beating on the rough African roads and tend to fail.

Will it be necessary to replace my front shock as well with a better quality one. I haven't heard of any people who's front shock failed on them, and I wont be putting much more than the normal amount of weight on the front.

All information greatly appreciated, and any recommendations for which quality rear shock welcome.

Safe riding
Rassie
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Old 19 Jan 2010
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It would help if we knew what sort of bike you had.....
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Old 20 Jan 2010
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Travel Bike year: 2008 Bike Model: Skygo GY6 200cc via Profile Champ
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Old 20 Jan 2010
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Front shock

"Rasman", hi there,

in my humbled opinion new fork springs (I assume that's what you are talking about) are always a good investment. I put Wirth progressive fork springs in my 1991 Honda TransAlp last year and it really DOES make a difference!!
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Old 22 Jan 2010
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Fork Spring

Hi there

Would you say it is a necessity to replace the stock fork spring with a better quality one, or would my current front spring last the trip. I believe it would be a good investment, but I'm on a small budget and can only afford to replace the rear shock. But I don't want to be halfway onto my trip and my front spring fails.

Thanks for the advice. If you can't find any info on my bike, its very similar to a Honda 200cc Bushlander.

Cheers
Rassie
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Old 22 Jan 2010
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Fork Springs

You can get the progressive fork springs for something like Euro 100 from the Wirth company in Germany. That's where I bought mine (much cheaper than in Japan) and got them installed by my local bike folks. Just google for the company.
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Old 23 Jan 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RasMan View Post
Hi there

Would you say it is a necessity to replace the stock fork spring with a better quality one, or would my current front spring last the trip. I believe it would be a good investment, but I'm on a small budget and can only afford to replace the rear shock. But I don't want to be halfway onto my trip and my front spring fails.

Thanks for the advice. If you can't find any info on my bike, its very similar to a Honda 200cc Bushlander.

Cheers
Rassie
I have never heard of fork spings actually FAILING

They usually tend to "wilt" maybe, but not heard of any breaking? If the front end is a bit soft, it may be worth replacing the springs & doing the fork seals & oil, maybe a silgthly heavier grade.
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Old 23 Jan 2010
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As above, you'd be pretty unlucky to snap springs in either front or rear suspension!

Most suspension problems are damping failure. The oil/gas seals fail and oil/gas pisses out and your suspension goes all bouncy. This is problematic on rear shocks as often they're manufactured so they can't be repaired. On front forks it's not normally an issue - Oil seals are normally generic parts cheaply sourced from any engineering stockists, and easy to replace.


If your front suspension is too soft, you could try preloading the springs by sticking washers/2p-coins under the caps at the top. Or sticking in heavier oil to harden the damping. Good forks, like on proper dirtbikes, often have adjustable damping and spring preload.


I wouldn't worry so much about front suspension failing, most of the extra weight when your touring is going on the back of the bike, so it's the rear shock(s) that need looking at. Good quality shock is nice, but most important thing is to have a spring hard enough for the weight you're carrying - Carrying too much weight for the spring(s) is what is likely to induce shock failure.
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