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  1. #1
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    Help with Super V rear shock replacement

    I've got a 1997 Super V 500 that came with a Fox Vanilla rear shock. I haven't been able to find the measurements of that shock to aide me in shopping for a replacement. Also, I'm not sure how to measure it myself. I've got the shock off of the bike. Should I stretch it out as long as it will go, or should it be measured while it's partly compressed?

    Doing a bit of online research, I found that Risse Racing shows that they make a shock that will fit 1996-1998 Super V Active bikes, but plain Super V's listed are only from 1993-1996. My swingarm does say Active80 on it, but I've got it in my head that the models that were actually called "Active" were DH race models. Am I mistaken? Either way, Risse does not list the physical dimensions of the shocks - they just say that what they build will give 4 inches (100mm) of travel.

    Can anyone help me out, either with how to measure the shock that came off the bike, or with a range of dimensions that I can use to shop with?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    So Risse says the overall length of the shocks they list for my model are 5.75" or 146mm. I guess that partly answers the question. I contacted Cannondale support, and they told me to check Risse. Go figure. I replied asking for frame dimensions, and they sent me a swing-arm tech sheet. Here's what it says.

    Application: 96' - 97' Super VA 80
    Type/material: Welded Alumnium
    Brake type(s): Cantilever only
    Travel: 80mm
    Shock eye to eye: 5.3"
    Derailer hanger: Std. Mt.
    Drop-out spacing: 135mm
    Bearing: 6052 A417
    Pivot 3-piece Gold A459
    Weight: 2.38 lbs.
    Max. tire width: 2.25"
    Front derailer: 31.8mm BP

    So I guess I could look for any rear shock in the range of 5.3" (shock eye to eye) to 5.75", since the Risse is that long. Maybe I've answered my own question. Any comments/advice?

    Does it matter that the swing-arm tech sheet says that it has 80mm of travel, but the Risse shock says 100mm of travel?

  3. #3
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    I have that same bike and the shock is 5.3 eye-to-eye. If you went with a longer shock, it would definitely steepen up the head angle. I don't know if that would be bad or not.

    You could look at the uber-v thread to see how others have modified the shock tab to accomodate longer shocks.

  4. #4
    PMK
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    FWIW, that entire bike was built around a DD60 headshock. The axle to crown dimension will be similar to a modern 100 fork.

    In the mid nineties, it was common for us to install a longer travel fork and the 5.75 shock.

    Got a Vanilla RX 5.75 long, from the Cannondale Moto style bike, I'll part with it for a reasonable amount.

    PK

  5. #5
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    Cane Creek will also be able to supply you with just about any dimension you'd like. They offer custom built stuff, very reasonably.....
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

    - FrostyStruthers



    www.mendoncyclesmith.com

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the advice and suggestions. I'll check out Cane Creek's offerings as well. PK, does your shock have a lockout? I had troubles with the one I'm replacing when I was going uphill. It'd bounce so much that my rear wheel would spin on a dirt road.

  7. #7
    All Lefty's, all the time Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canoman
    It'd bounce so much that my rear wheel would spin on a dirt road.
    Just FYI? Unless you buy a shock either with platform, or lockout, yeah, they bounce. People have dealt with it for years, by learning to pedal smoothly. A very tuneable shock will prevent some of it with low speed compression damping control, but single pivot bikes bounce when the shock is "open". They are VERY plush for it, which is sweet, but if you expect to be able to stand up and hammer without consequence, you'll never be happy.

    I'd look at a Fox RP23, or a Rock Shox Monarch. Both will get you where you want to be. CC doesn't offer platform tuning per se, and a straight lockout shock being run locked out all the time for climbs will be unhappy after a while......
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  8. #8
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    Thanks Mendon. I don't necessarily have to have a lockout - maybe just a little less bounce than what I've got. I'm not really sure - when I had the most trouble with that, my shock may have already been in questionable shape. I have no doubts that what you're saying is right - I'll just have to experiment to learn how to ride uphill most effectively.

    So far, it looks like most of the shocks I'm finding in similar sizes have considerably less travel than the 80mm provided by the original shock. The Cane Creek Cloud 9 (135mm) has 20mm travel, per this: http://canecreek.com/manuals/cloud_nine_worksheet.pdf The Fox Float RP23 (5.5") has 1.0 inches of travel (25.4 mm) per this: http://www.foxracingshox.com/bike/10/shocks/FLOAT. The Rock Shox Monarch's appear to only go as small as 152 mm (6 inches), which is too big, plus, they only have 31.75mm travel.

    The Risse Astro-5 has a setting that "mimics a lock-out, but is not a lock-out" and gives 100mm travel. MSRP is $298.

    So for an extra $53 over the $245 CC, I'd get a lock-out setting and 80mm more travel going with the offering from Risse.

    Thoughts? Would less travel be better for the bounce I'm talking about?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canoman
    Thanks Mendon. I don't necessarily have to have a lockout - maybe just a little less bounce than what I've got. I'm not really sure - when I had the most trouble with that, my shock may have already been in questionable shape. I have no doubts that what you're saying is right - I'll just have to experiment to learn how to ride uphill most effectively.

    So far, it looks like most of the shocks I'm finding in similar sizes have considerably less travel than the 80mm provided by the original shock. The Cane Creek Cloud 9 (135mm) has 20mm travel, per this: http://canecreek.com/manuals/cloud_nine_worksheet.pdf The Fox Float RP23 (5.5") has 1.0 inches of travel (25.4 mm) per this: http://www.foxracingshox.com/bike/10/shocks/FLOAT. The Rock Shox Monarch's appear to only go as small as 152 mm (6 inches), which is too big, plus, they only have 31.75mm travel.

    The Risse Astro-5 has a setting that "mimics a lock-out, but is not a lock-out" and gives 100mm travel. MSRP is $298.

    So for an extra $53 over the $245 CC, I'd get a lock-out setting and 80mm more travel going with the offering from Risse.

    Thoughts? Would less travel be better for the bounce I'm talking about?
    There's a difference between suspension travel and shock stroke. A Super V with 80mm travel uses a shock with about 25 mm (1 inch) of stroke. That suspension has about a 3:1 ratio.

  10. #10
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    Excellent. Thanks LarryG. That clears things up for me. I guess it makes sense that the wheel travel is longer than the shock stroke.

  11. #11
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    I replaced my Alps4 (air leak) and 5R (air leak) on my SV1000 with a Fox RP3 (5.5") and I like it. I'm only a recreational rider and this was a good replacement shock for me. The seat rides a little higher (reduced standover clearance) and I don't have any swingarm travel limit problems (i.e., swingarm doesn't bang into the frame). Seems like the Fox units in 5.5" are still around since the are used on some later Cannondales. Good Luck!

  12. #12
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    I swapped my vanilla with a Fox RP23. Propedal makes all the difference in the world. Its no joke. Bike used to bob like crazy whn pedaling, I went up to an 800# spring (I'm 240) and couldnt get one any stiffer and my bike still bounced too much. Like Mendon said, if you dont go with a platforming shock, youll likely bob. The RP23's are very reasonably priced too. Check Ebay.

  13. #13
    PMK
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    The shock I have is an Rx, which has rebound adjustment and is a coil spring style.

    I know exactly what you mean about the bikes ride with the straight Vanilla. We still have two Super V's in the house, both are 99's that came with a plain Vanilla rear. For a longtime both were fitted with Vanilla RC's, now one remains coil sprung while the other is on a ALPs 5r.

    Heavy riders benefit from air sprung dampers primarily because they can finally get enough spring to support them.

    SuperV's are very critical to proper sag. The suspension design does not welcome an undersprung chassis setting. This also is a huge factor in how much they bounce around.

    The guy posting about being 240 with an 800 lb spring is way undersprung. At 195 I ride a Fox 950 or Eibach 900, my wife had an 850 on her bike and she is way lighter than I am.

    So much about a proper performing bike is setup. Miss the mark and it compounds the bad traits.

    PK

    Suffice to say, I have owned Super V's since 94, on the triangle swingarm "active" types, you need adjustable rebound as a minimum to dial in low speed rebound. This makes the bike very ridable, it will however move slightly with each pedal stroke.

    If you ride a lot of fire roads, commutes, or climb on smooth trails, lockouts are nice, but ask any frame builder or suspension tuner and the honest answer is, you bought suspension to keep the tire hooked up, dial in the suspension for the riders weight, ability and terrain. The slight bob with each pedal stroke will not be noticed unless you are obsessed by it.

  14. #14
    PMK
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ride Free or Die
    I swapped my vanilla with a Fox RP23. Propedal makes all the difference in the world. Its no joke. Bike used to bob like crazy whn pedaling, I went up to an 800# spring (I'm 240) and couldnt get one any stiffer and my bike still bounced too much. Like Mendon said, if you dont go with a platforming shock, youll likely bob. The RP23's are very reasonably priced too. Check Ebay.

    At 240, I'm assuming this is birthday suit, add in all your gear and it may be closer to 255 with a Camelback.

    WWWWAAAAYYYYYY undersprung, and adding just the sprung will find the damper is not going to have enough valving to not blow through the travel in both compression and rebound.

    For this rider, in this application, the RP is a very good choice. I'd love to know what you ride on the front, hoping and knowing the stiffness of the frame, and size of the rider you are running a Fox 36 something with air springs, a Drop Off triple, or Super T with air, something non flexy and air sprung.

    No fork or rear damper is valved properly for this size rider, unless it has had some work done to the valving. It does make that much of a difference. This can be as simple as going to more viscous fluids.

    PK

  15. #15
    PMK
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    The Rx I have is now not available, I noticed a couple of pits in the shafts plating. I believe I have another shaft, but have no idea when I can get around to replacing the shaft and servicing the thing.

    My guess is I'll steal the shims and bottoming cushion for the DHX 5.0 Air going on our Ventana ECDM Tandem.

    Sorry for the inconvenience.

    PK

  16. #16
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    I have this same shock on my V. Mine is not dampening, it compresses very easily. I tried pumping it up, but it is not taking air. Is there some trick to filling it? I hope I don't need to replace it, because I can get a decent used bike for the cost of the shock.

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