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Shocks...Different perspective


I wrote this up a couple days ago. For what it's worth...

1100 Shocks Vs 1150 Shocks:
The need for aftermarket shocks, IMHO, depends on which bike you own.  The
stock shocks on 1100 RTs are near rubbish compared to Ohlins.   The stock
Showa shocks on the 1150 RT, at least on my '04 1150 RT are pretty great out
of the box.

I had my 1100 F&R Ohlins converted to the 1150.  I paid about $350 for this
and it included complete rebuilds as well as a lot of new parts.   I'm very
happy with the "new" Ohlins on my 1150, but I was also pretty impressed with
the stock shocks, especially the rear Showa.  (No, it won't fit on your

If I'd not already had the Ohlins, I wouldn't have bothered.   The rear
Showa is a real nice shock.

Why Ohlins?
My thinking on the Ohlins purchase for the 1100RT was this.

1. My OEM shocks were giving me spinal compressions.

2. The Ohlins can be purchased from Wolf BMW in Canada for a lot less than
in the US.  No sales tax. No import duties Shipping is free on orders over
$500, but they take forever to get here from the factory.

3. Ohlins for RTs don't have compression damping adjustments, but the rear
has the remote preload adjustment just like the stock shocks...The adjuster
mounts in the same spot.  Rebound adjustment for both front and rear is
easier, requiring no tools.  One or two clicks make a real difference you
can feel.  (There are nearly 30 clicks of adjustment.).  Ohlins also has an
adjustable ride height adjustment.   I like this for sharpening the turn-in
on the RT without messing up the preload adjustment.

4. If I trade my bike, I'll have no trouble selling my Ohlins for a good
buck.  They are blue-chips.

Other Alternatives:

There are some other brands that offer MORE for less money.   WILBUR shocks
have full adjustability, front and rear, for preload, rebound dampening AND
compression dampening, just like a real sport bike.   (I mighta bought them
if I'd known about them before I made my Ohlins purchase.)   Contact a Klaus
at Run N Lites.  They have a web site.

Last night, I saw another brand in this month's ON that also offers full
adjustability on front and rear.  I forgot the name and there was no price
given in the ad.  My point is, there ARE other choices.

I didn't buy Works because I don't live near them and I don't like their
adjustments as much.  If you are among the short of leg, Works offers a lot
of good options for you.  Their quality is generally good and their service
is top-notch.  Works are rebuildable too and offer most of the advantages of
Ohlins and are good rebuildable shocks.  Resale on Works is not as good as
Ohlins, but OK.  I considered these carefully, but wanted the remote preload
adjustment and not the two-position preload adjustment.  Instead, I bought
Ohlins from Wolf BMW in Canada, got no tax and free shipping and came within
$150 of the Works price and I hadn't added freight from California to

I didn't buy Progessive or Fox because they are very hard to re-sell.  Not
much BMW market for these unless you're willing to give them away.

I didn't buy Penske (Adjustable for both High Speed and Low Speed
compression as well as rebound and preload and ride height) because they are
super-expensive and resale is only comparable to Ohlins.   They also don't
have the convenient preload adjustment.


End of oilheads-digest V1 #27