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Author Topic: Bitubo Shock Upgrade  (Read 71264 times)

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Chief

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Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« on: May 30, 2007, 07:23:14 PM »

I went by Traxxion Dynamics and picked up the loaner shocks today. The part number of the shock is: HD004WMT03.

The install was very straightforward with no kinks. I noticed that one of my Progressives is leaking oil, so the timing is perfect.

I mounted the shocks so the resevoir is to the rear to avoid any possible interference with the wires for the saddlebag locks.

There is a generous spring preload adjustment range to give a lot more preload adjustment than the Progressives I removed.
« Last Edit: May 30, 2007, 08:00:08 PM by Chief »
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Chief

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2007, 07:24:59 PM »

Since the resevoir is large, there is not very much room between the resevoir and the back of the bag. The resevoir extends beyond the molded channel for the shocks.
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Chief

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2007, 07:26:42 PM »

The shock has a click wheel on top of the resevoir to adjust the compression damping.
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Chief

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2007, 07:28:04 PM »

..and a rebound damping ring on the bottom.
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Chief

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2007, 07:29:41 PM »

I plan on doing some riding soon and will be glad to share my observations.

From a point of asthetics, the Progressives are a better looking, more Harleyesque, shock than the Bitubos, but on a bagger, you can't see them, so who cares.
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Fired00d

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2007, 07:30:27 PM »

Since the resevoir is large, there is not very much room between the resevoir and the back of the bag. The resevoir extends beyond the molded channel for the shocks.
Any concern about them touching/rubbing paint off saddlebag? Looks awful close. :nervous:

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Chief

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2007, 07:34:03 PM »

Any concern about them touching/rubbing paint off saddlebag? Looks awful close. :nervous:

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Yes. As it is right now, there is about 1/8" of gap, but as soon as you stuff an overfilled saddlebag liner in there I'm almost certain they will hit. I can protect the paint with some paint film, but the aluminum on the resevoir will undoubtedly be marred. I will try flipping one of them around and relocate the saddlebag wiring to see if there is more clearance to the front side of the bag.
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110tHunDer

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2007, 07:57:35 PM »

Any concern about them touching/rubbing paint off saddlebag? Looks awful close. :nervous:

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Yeah, that looks a little too close for comfort.  The one thing that might make it OK, is that that part of the shock is stationary and would not be sliding up and down the bag, so the film idea seems like it would work.  Another alternative would be to put the fuzzy part of a piece of velcro on the bag and the shock reservoir so that you have some cushion there and protection on both the bag and the shock.  If flipping them around alleviates the concern, that would, of course, be the best, so I'll be interested to see what you find out there.

On a side note, I can't believe all the reports of leaky Progressives. :confused5:
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Chief

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2007, 08:06:29 PM »

Spinning the shock around to move the resevoir in front of the shock leaves about the same amount of space, although since it is closer to the bag support, bag expansion would be less likely. The problem with this position is that the wire exiting the bag on the '07s with the saddlebag locks now interferes with the resevoir.

I will mount the shocks as I did initially, and protect the bag with some abrasion protection film. Hopefully that will be enough. Another option would be to space the saddlebag brackets away from the frame with a few washers to move the bag our of harm's way.

I'll protect the bags for now and worry about the shocks later if I decide to keep them.
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Twolanerider

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #9 on: May 30, 2007, 08:30:18 PM »

Definitely high on the funky looking scale.  But since their hidden it's true, who cares.  So long as the contract or obstruction questions don't turn out to be harmful issues the questions will remain how they perform relative to the other common options.  Since I've got the Progressives will be quite interested in the comparative results.  Also will be interested to hear how the various types of adjustment are to manage.
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Chief

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2007, 09:32:51 PM »

Well, I took the bagless bike for a spin, and lightly loaded its hard to come away with anything worthwhile. I'll have to wait until later to get some worthwhile riding in. One thing I liked, is that I could reach back and dial in the compressoin damping while riding. With the resevoir mounted to the rear, the knob is up pretty high. I'm sure it's something a passenger could do. I was riding without the bags and it was real easy. I think the knob is high enough that you should still be able to access the knob with the bags installed.

On another note, when I got to about 2,500 RPM, I had this awful rattling coming from under the tank. It sounded like a loose bracket or something. When I got back, I checked it out and the front bolt of the horn bracket / engine mount is missing, and the rear bolt was loose. Evidently when having the head gasket replaced, they were not tightened. We wore full face helmets for the trip this weekend and that muffled out the noise.

I can take it to the dealer and I'm sure they would be happy to replace my polished stainless bolt with a stock Harley piece. No thanks, I'll fix it myself. I'll be certain to let them know what happened tho.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2007, 08:29:51 AM by Chief »
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Midnight Rider

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #11 on: May 30, 2007, 09:35:37 PM »

Glad you got to pick them up today, Chief.  I think on the pre-07's the best solution would be to place the reservoir close to the bracket as you suggested for less flex and potential rubbing.  Protecting everything might not be much of a problem.

If I'm not mistaken, you can get the part going from the top of the shock to the reservoir in chrome to match the spring.  The actual reservoir, if I'm not wrong, will be the aluminum, but I suppose it could be polished as well.  I will talk to them Monday about the options available.  Max also mentioned they have a good chrome plating resource as well (Don, same one who chromed the Vrod forks they have on display....show chrome).

Main thing now is to see how they perform compared to the Progressives and my stock Vrod shocks.

Thanks for the pics, Chuck.
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110tHunDer

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #12 on: May 30, 2007, 10:44:05 PM »

. . . Another option would be to space the saddlebag brackets away from the frame with a few washers to move the bag our of harm's way. . .

I thought about that, too, but you might play hell getting the pin to engage the wire if you take away any of the tolerance there.  Would be worth 10 mins to try, though.

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Chief

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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #13 on: May 31, 2007, 08:25:00 AM »

I thought about that, too, but you might play hell getting the pin to engage the wire if you take away any of the tolerance there.  Would be worth 10 mins to try, though.

The problem I've run into with this before is to move the rear hanger out, it needs to sit on top of the detachables bracket, and the space between the detachables bracket and the fender rail is filled with washers. This moves the SB bracket out about 1/4". When you move the rear bracket out 1/4", the front bracket needs to come out the same, and really looks like crap with 1/4" stack of washers under the bracket. A nice spacer might do the trick, because the washer stack looks like crap.
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Re: Bitubo Shock Upgrade
« Reply #14 on: May 31, 2007, 09:10:56 AM »

Most hardware store have chrome spacer in different sizes you may try that rather than stacking washers.
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