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I've spent a few days combing through the forums, including most of the stickied thread on shocks in this forum here. After going through it all, I feel totally overwhelmed. So many options to choose from at so many price points. So many opinions on progressive/linear springs. So many questions.

Here's my situation. I just want to upgrade from the stock suspension. I got a good deal on an unused set of Progressive Suspension front fork springs, and I'm looking for some rear shocks to complement them. I want them to be chromed. My Bonnie is mostly my commuter bike. Though I occasionally do longer rides 2-up with some luggage on the rack.

From what I gathered, I'm leaning towards:
Is having spring preload set by screw adjustment (the 7614/444) rather than fixed presets (7610) all that better? Is it more difficult to get both sides set to the same preload?

If you get the more expensive shocks (like the Ohlins) that have all the adjustments on it (compression/rebound damping, adjustable length, etc), is adjusting the suspension from solo riding to 2-up significantly more complicated? Or is it pretty quick once you know all the various settings for each type of riding?

For the front forks,
  • Is it worth it to add the Thruxton front preload adjusters?
  • For the riding I do, is switching the weight of the oil in the front forks something I should consider?
 

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Felt the same as you. Very confusing and the more you read you realize how little you seem to know! Focus on what you find wrong first and then look for the solution/fix. You don't say what is wrong with current set-up. My OEM rears where spine jarring over bumps and had excessive bounce on rebound for my 175 lbs. Weight makes a big difference, so depending on your weight, what you carry, and your flexibility in accommodating a pillion passenger, all important considerations in achieving the best upgrade.

After a lot of circling and exploration I found the all chrome Hagon 2810s fit the bill. They look very similar to the OEM and provide two way adjustment (compression and rebound). Had them built for my weight by the factory in England and shipped to the US. Expect a lot of input options, but first be clear on identifying the problem you are looking to solve and then consider the look. Ohlins are more sophisticated options that many like, particularly if you track your bike, but you may not need to go to the extra expense to be happy, as I have found with my Thruxton.

Good luck! Ride safe!
 

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I have an 08 T100 with Sonic linear springs up front and Hagon 2810's in the rear. The Sonics's are working good but still need a little adjusting to get right. The Hagon's still working on, so far I'm very happy with the results, but they to need some more fine tuning.

BTW I'm 5"9" and weight 200 - 205 lbs.
 

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I'm okay with the stock springs, Ricor Intiminators, and 5W oil (needed for the Ricors) in the front. Not great, but better than stock and very little brake dive, which I find very annoying.

I have Ikon 7610s in the back, and I'm not happy with that part of the ride. Like you, I don't know what to do about it. I'm not sure that I can even tell the difference between the Ikons and the stock shocks.
 

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I am in the same boat. I found some Ohlins for sale in the classifieds on here that I like but I don't know if they will work for my Thruxton. They are 355.6mm eye to eye, so they are slightly shorter than the stock and I don't know what the stroke on them is yet because the guy hasn't got back to me with a part number.
 

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OP look at Bitubo. Italian made, high quality and on par with Ohlins. They also can be rebuilt if need be. Been very happy with the rears I bought for $350. Going with traxxion dynamics AR-25 drop in dampers\springs for front forks as we speak.

I highly recommend talking to Dan Anderson at Traxxion Dynamics, very helpful and no hard sell. More $$$ does not always mean more performance. Dan actually talked me off more expensive reservoirs for rears.
 

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I've been eyeing up the Bitubo WMT for a long time now. I wish I took advantage when Carpi Moto was carrying them because they had the best price I've seen. It appears they stopped stocking them though.
 

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I've been eyeing up the Bitubo WMT for a long time now. I wish I took advantage when Carpi Moto was carrying them because they had the best price I've seen. It appears they stopped stocking them though.
Traxxion can source them and they beat CarpiM at the time I grabbed them. Talk to them maybe they can help.
 

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After reading your first post of this thread the impression i get is that you know very little about suspension, and that you don't know what you want from your suspension or how to adjust it to get what you want...... except that you want something better than what you have.

as you say you'd like chrome shocks, my recommendation is either the Hagon 2810 in stainless steel body/spring, or the Ikon 7610-sp8.
both of these shocks have cam type pre-load adjusters for simple, quick pre-load adjustment (don't bother with shocks with threaded pre-load adjusters, they are far to fiddly for your needs).

and both these shocks have a single damping adjuster dial (which reduces the possibility of you getting lost in the settings)

both of these shocks are excellent value in their price range, so of these two i guess it's the price, availability and look of the shocks that you should base your decision on.

as far as the forks goes i feel the standard springs with a drop in damper valve like Ricor intiminators or YSS pd valves and suitable oil would be a good direction for you to go (pre-load adjustable fork caps can be added if you feel the need).....i'm not a fan of progressive rate fork springs.

one last point i will make is.....whoever you purchase your chosen shocks from should ask you pertinent questions like.....what weight you are, how often do you carry a pillion, what kind of riding do you generally do (cruise, canyon carving etc) to make sure the shocks are built to suit you.
 

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I also did a lot of research trying to find what might be the best setup for my 2012 T100. After lots of reading and advice, I settled on the Hagon Classic Road Shocks, 10 mm longer than stock and setup for 175-200 lbs. I also got the Hagon Progressive springs for the front forks, along with the RaceTec cartridge emulators. Added the Hagon pre-load adjusters for the front forms as well, but I'm not sure if I'll need those.
The rear shocks were an easy swap. I haven't done the front end yet, but will have it done next week. I'll post my opinion on the new setup once I'm done.
 

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Since these bikes are never going to be top performance machines, I'm of the opinion it is a complete waste of money to buy high end suspension such as Ohlins. Even progressive vs linear fork springs seem to have little added benefit as per many opinions I've read on these forums over the years. The most bang for the buck will come from swapping out the rears as the stocks are low grade/not correctly damped for the bikes weight/performance character. I messed about with the pre-load spring positions on my stock 2013 T100 shocks for a bit but this either gave too soft/wallowy cornering or too harsh over bumps. I picked up a pair of lightly used Hagons (Classic III) at the Thruxton length and setup up for my riding weight range...BIG improvement! Bike doesn't wallow in heavy cornering, doesn't throw me up off the seat in harsh bumps. Turn tip in is more lively due to increased rear height. A buddy also wanted to improve his T100 ride and went with the gas-charged TecBike USA setup, at Thruxton length and achieved similar results to me.
If you do elect to go with increased rear height, note that sidestand/centerstand become a little too short and you either need to mod them/replace them with Thruxton spec or just live with the extra lean on SS and insufficient lift of rear wheel off ground on CS. Of course keeping improved rear shocks at standard length is also an option.

Yes, there's a ton of theory/details to be learned about suspension, but at the end of the day, these are old tech bikes with big heavy road weight and relatively low power engines. Find yourself some decent priced mid range shocks, for your weight range and just go riding!
 

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Traxxion can source them and they beat CarpiM at the time I grabbed them. Talk to them maybe they can help.
Awesome, thanks for the info!
 

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Speed Addicts had great prices when I bought shocks from them a few months ago.

I got the Progressive 444 shocks, which I am just getting around to installing.

I also got the Progressive front springs.

If I can get them installed this week, I'll post back my untrained opinion.

You're right, there is a ton of info on this forum, most of it very helpful.

It sounds like any suspension change to these bikes is going to be for the better. You could spend $400 or $1,400...

Slots
 

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Tagging this to keep track. I got a lightly used pair of Hagons and a very discount new pair of progressive brand progressive shocks with no change of fork oil weight recently. Trying to figure out how much preload to use on this setup while I get off my lazy ass and change the oil so I can go for a ride to see how this all feels.

Primarily I was not happy with how bone jarring the bike felt when hitting potholes and cracks in the road (one hit so hard my ezpass flew off and got run over)

I too shall return in a few weeks to report how it went so we can hopefully share some notes on setup and results.
 

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i use the bitubo WME's + their non adjustable except preload cartridge fork kit, works great. if you can deal with a taller shock the longer travel will allow lighter springs to work well. as noted built for you is best + mid priced will do well for most IMO
 

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I'm of the opinion it is a complete waste of money to buy high end suspension such as Ohlins.
Good advice Tornado99. I agree and it is such a personal choice limited only by budget to get the desire result (for you). I bought my first Thruxton with Gazi Hyper X which were phenomenal shocks and, when compared to my wife's Thruxton, made it feel like a performance bike (without the 200kph+ top speed).

I added Matris Spring Kit BSE up front and I could keep up with (most of) the pocket rockets through the mountains near my home. I was "invincible" and frustrated a few of the sports bikes when they couldn't shake me. Whilst I didn't have the exceptional top speed, the handling mods made it a great bike. All for about $2,000 AUD at the time. I could afford it at the time and wasn't too bothered by the cost as it gave me the effect that I wanted.

Fast forward 5 years and after totalling my Thruxton I bought another Thruxton with standard suspension :( .

I tolerated it for a while but pushing through corners gave me reactions that were less than optimal. Wallowing, unpredictable corners, way too bouncy for my liking - so i started again.

It was hard to justify $2K again so i compromised to Ikons (that I bought second hand and had rebuilt) and YSS emulators up front. I still have to fit the emulators as I am thinking of throwing in Progressive Springs as well.

The difference just with the rear is night and day already but if I didn't have the money I would have sufficed with the standard kit. So far I am up to $350 AUD and I know that I will not end up with suspenders that are as good as my first Thruxton but I will have to settle for what I am willing to compromise down to. It will still be good but won't be great.

Are these bike performance bikes? - no. Can they keep up with performance bikes with the right kit (even on 130 tyres) absolutely. With suspension the phrase is true - you get what you pay for. It depends on what you're willing to pay. FWIW Ohlins have always been out of my price range :)
 

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So....finished installing new Hagon shocks on the rear, along with complete fork rebuild with Hagon progressive springs, preload adjuster and RaceTech cartridge emulators. It was a relatively easy installation. I'd rather that the Hagon shocks had a steel insert in the rubber mounts, but they went on easily with a very small bit of lube. They are 10mm longer, but the fit was easy. The fork rebuild was not too challenging either. Drilled out the original valve as per the RaceTech instructions. Used the adapter for the emulators, so they fit properly on top of the valve. I filled the forks to a level of 120 mm air gap, with the spring out and fork collapsed (emulator in). I left the emulator at the factory setting (205 turns). Cut 60mm off the original spacer to account for the emulator, adapter, and preload adjuster. Note that the Hagon preload adjuster came with the small bolt on the bottom loose (the one that holds the spacer that contacts the spring). I actually ended up reversing the spacer, as it fit poorly on the existing spring spacer. This probably makes a preload difference, but can be compensated for with the adjuster itself. The hardest part of reassembly was getting the forks back up through the damn headlight mount!!
I finished up and went to take it for a short ride, because it was sunny and hot out. As luck would have it, my battery was toast, so I didn't get to ride until today after I installed a new battery. It's cool and windy today, so only took a short ride. Since I also put new tires on, I wasn't riding too aggressively.
Initial impressions though, are that this makes for a new bike! I can instantly feel the difference in ride and confidence in corners. Much smoother ride, very responsive. Great feedback from the front end. I can't wait until it warms up this week so I can really ride it hard and evaluate the change.
I've been told that the progressive springs are really enough to improve the front end, and increasing fork oil viscosity can improve the damping. But, I went with the emulators because I wanted an optimal change. I also went to 15W oil, to try to improve rebound damping. So far, very good impression. I'll post again once I get more time on the bike.
 

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Felt the same as you. Very confusing and the more you read you realize how little you seem to know! Focus on what you find wrong first and then look for the solution/fix. You don't say what is wrong with current set-up. My OEM rears where spine jarring over bumps and had excessive bounce on rebound for my 175 lbs. Weight makes a big difference, so depending on your weight, what you carry, and your flexibility in accommodating a pillion passenger, all important considerations in achieving the best upgrade.

After a lot of circling and exploration I found the all chrome Hagon 2810s fit the bill. They look very similar to the OEM and provide two way adjustment (compression and rebound). Had them built for my weight by the factory in England and shipped to the US. Expect a lot of input options, but first be clear on identifying the problem you are looking to solve and then consider the look. Ohlins are more sophisticated options that many like, particularly if you track your bike, but you may not need to go to the extra expense to be happy, as I have found with my Thruxton.

Good luck! Ride safe!
+1 on Hagon 2810's. I also added Racetech emulators and progressive springs to the forks and have been very happy with the results. 2 years with this setup and I haven't second guessed any of it. 5'10" and 175 lbs for reference. Also, Bellacorse gave me great advice and they'll size the Hagons for your weight and riding style.
 
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